Friday, January 13, 2012

Love & Respect

A few years ago, when Josh & I had first started dating, my mom gave me the book Love and Respect as a Christmas present. We had been together not quite six months, but we both knew by then it was going someplace serious. And I think my mom knew too, which is why she gave me a book for married couples.
 As I do with most books, I started to read it almost immediately. And as I do with most nonfiction books, I got distracted a few chapters in and it got forgotten on the bookshelf.

The book's main theme is pretty self explanatory- that wives desperately need to know their husbands love them, and husbands desperately need to know that their wives respect them.

Well, duh.

When I first read the book, as I said, Josh and I were just dating. Many of the points addressed in the book didn't necessarily apply to us, because we were still in the "honeymoon" phase.
Look how cute we were!
Fast forward a few years later, and we are quickly approaching our second wedding anniverary. While I will say our second year has been significantly easier than the first, we still have our moments where we want to strangle each other. And at the end of many of our fights battles disagreements, I am left feeling like we're going in circles.

Not long ago I picked up the book again to see what advice it would offer. This time around, I am proud to say I made it all the way through the entire book, and loved it.

One of the things that struck me the most was how often I, as a wife, fail to show my husband that I respect him. I'm really good at showing him I love him, because that's what comes naturally to me. But so often, especially when I am frustrated, I don't act like I respect him. I make sarcastic comments and roll my eyes and let the little things bug me. Then, because he feels disrespected, he is not particularly loving towards me, and the cycle continues. This handy infographic explains it better than I ever could:

I'm not doing a great job of explaining this, but trust me, when I read the book, a light bulb went off in my head. I've been trying to be more aware of how I speak to Josh, and to make it obvious how much I do respect him.

If you're married, or in a serious relationship, I can't recommend this book enough!

Now, your turn... what books have positively affected your relationships? Please share!

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