“The greatest gift that you can give to others is the gift of unconditional love and acceptance.” – Brian Tracy
Falling in love is an exciting experience. When you’re with someone that you love, your whole outlook on life can become more positive and wonderful the longer that you’re together.
Couple’s expert and author Stuart Fensterheim says that unconditional love is “so freeing and transformative because it lets you stop trying to change or control your partner. You’re free to work on yourself and find even better ways to live together in joy and love.”
Every once in a while, we can ask ourselves how we know if our partners love us unconditionally. Even if feels like everything’s going well, curiosity can get the better of us. If you want to make sure that your partner really does love you unconditionally, there are plenty of signs to look for. When you see them in your partner’s behavior, you’ll know that they’re in it for the long haul.
HERE ARE 7 SIGNS YOUR PARTNER LOVES YOU UNCONDITIONALLY
1. THEY WANT TO GROW OLD WITH YOU
When you make jokes about growing old together and chasing kids off your lawn, they have a certain look in their eye. It’s almost as if they can see themselves growing old together with you. Not only that, but they’re excited about it.
But how do you know they mean it?
Dating coach Patrick Banks says, “Do you remember that little tingle you felt in your stomach the first time you saw your significant other? The great thing about being in a relationship that’s meant to last is that this feeling only gets stronger over time. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been together for two years or twenty, when you’re with the person you’re meant to grow old with, you want them as badly each day as you did on the first.”
If you can see yourself growing old together with your partner too, it’s probably a sign that their love for you is unconditional and you feel safe and complete with them enough to start a life together.
2. YOU TELL THEM YOUR SECRETS
Telling them your secrets means that you trust them, which means that they have been trustworthy enough for you to do so. When you tell them all of your secrets, or the things you’ve been too embarrassed to tell anyone else, they don’t look at you with shock or disgust. They accept you in all that you are, embarrassing secrets included. Not only that, but they don’t even think to tell anyone, even their best friends.
3. THEY’RE PROUD OF YOU, AND THEY TELL YOU
No matter what your accomplishments are, big or small, they make sure to let you know that they’re proud of everything that you’ve accomplished. Even if you do something as small as clean the living room, or something as big as getting a promotion at work.
Terri Orbuch, Ph.D., professor at Oakland University and author says, “When people feel recognized as special and appreciated, they’re happier in that relationship and more motivated to make the relationship better and stronger.”
Whatever you do is something amazing to them, and they’re always ready and willing to tell you how proud they are of you for all of your successes – and even the things that you tried your best at, and failed.
4. YOU DISAGREE, BUT ALWAYS MAKE UP
All couples have arguments or disagreements. That’s not something anyone can avoid. But when the both of you disagree, you don’t let it fester into resentments. They are always willing to discuss and communicate and come to a compromise or the end of an argument. You never have to worry about an argument causing contention in the relationship, because you know that in the end you’re going to make up.
5. THEY’RE ALWAYS CHIVALROUS
Even if the two of you have been together for twenty years, when your partner loves you unconditionally, they’re always going to go out of their way to make sure that you’re comfortable and happy. They’ll still pull your chair out for you, or get the door. They’ll always make sure to help you unload the groceries or simply get up to get you a glass of water when you’re thirsty.
Licensed social worker, certified life coach, and author David Schroeder, LMSW, CPC points out that, “Love is more than a feeling or emotion, it is a conscious action and choice to aid the well-being of another. It’s the willingness to give love, affection, and admiration with openness, acceptance, and appreciation.”
Unconditional love is making sure that you’re happy and healthy.
6. THEY’RE PROTECTIVE OF YOU
This doesn’t mean that they’re going to be jealous if you go out with friends. Rather, they’re always going to want to make sure that you’re safe. They’ll go out of their way to make sure that you have a ride home if you go out, or make sure that you can catch a ride home if they can’t. That protective streak will never go away, either. If your partner loves you unconditionally, they’re always going to want to make sure that you’re safe and sound, no matter what.
7. THEY’RE EMOTIONALLY VULNERABLE IN FRONT OF YOU
A lot of people have a hard time opening up emotionally. Even if that is the case, your partner will have no problem opening up to you and showing that emotional vulnerability.
“Showing unconditional love means being vulnerable, authentic and honest. Trusting each other enough to show all of yourself to your partner. To be their safe haven, the one person in all the world that they can be raw with, to invest all of their trust and hope in,” adds Fensterheim.
They’re going to tell you their hopes, dreams, fears and secrets – and each time you’ll know that they love and trust you more than anyone else.
Being in love is a wonderful experience, and when your partner loves you unconditionally, it’s easier to let go and let yourself be more open and vulnerable than ever before.
“Unconditional love is not an unhealthy codependent relationship where one person compromises everything to please the other. You both compromise and treat each other with kindness. Showing love means you’re in this together no matter what. You are the other person’s champion in life,” says Fensterheim.
If you see the signs in your partner and yourself, congratulations! You’re in a relationship that will surely stand the tests of time, and all the stress and curveballs that life has to throw at you.