What Qualities Will Help a Marriage go the Distance?
Relationships come in all kids of different shapes and forms, and people tend to choose life partners for a variety of reasons. Some prioritize a sense of humor and shared interests, others care most about intelligence and professional drive. Sexual attraction, shared values, cultural and religious beliefs, financial security, and friendship are among the qualities people prioritize in their search for a committed relationship. A marriage based on any combination of these qualities will often thrive. But life tends to throw some unexpected curveballs along the course of a marriage, and a particular quality that I notice consistently helps relationships through adversity or tragedy is mutual respect. Webster’s Dictionary defines respect as “considering worthy of high regard” and as “the quality or state of being esteemed”. It’s interesting to reflect on these definitions — we know that self esteem is essential to a secure and satisfied experience of one’s self, so it makes sense that a high regard for the esteem of one’s partner would be an essential shared quality in a lasting relationship, both in joyous and challenging times.