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Courtship and Commitment

March 26, 2012

Some days, I just hate to hear the pop culture news as it seems that so many famous folk just can’t keep their commitments to each other for an extended period of time. Keeping a commitment amongst us mere mortals is hard but, fortunately, it has been reported that the divorce rate is on the decline and that is a very good thing.

Sadly, our culture and society is heavily influenced by popular cultural icons with dysfunctional lives.  We “see” famous people getting away with living a life free from anything permanent and “see” them being rewarded with fame and fortune and we want to be like them.  But do we? Really?

Let’s assume that you are looking for someone with whom you can spend your life – someone whom you trust is capable of making the same commitment to you as you desire to make to them. How can you be sure that you each understand the importance of commitment in a long-term relationship in the same way? Well, that is where what I discussed last week comes into play – communication

It is critical and necessary to learn about each other’s character (yes, it does matter), values, beliefs, etc. in order to determine whether or not you are both on the same page. Some people see commitment as transitory – they can only commit to anything for as long as it (whatever “it” is) “feels” good or is “right” for them. For others, commitment means something much more permanent – a solemn oath, vow, etc. Commitment to these folks is about honor and duty. It isn’t viewed as something impermanent. The only way to discover how another person views commitment is by observing and listening.  Do their actions match their words? Are those actions and words in alignment with your own?

Regardless of what celebrities are doing or how they live and conduct their lives, for most of us, there is a hard-wired desire for the security and stability that comes with the permanence of a mutual commitment between two people. Commitment is important in a relationship because it is actually the “glue” that bonds two people together more than sex ever will. It’s the knowledge that the other person is there – for you – and you for them, no matter what life throws your way or what challenges arise. And, when all is said and done, commitment is the fruit of a successful courtship – one born of a healthy connection and nourished by great communication.

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