Love is a choice. When we married our spouse, we knew that we were marrying an imperfect person, yet we chose to love him or her. Despite his or her faults, we chose love. During the years leading up to marriage, our emotions are running high and we easily overlook all of their mistakes or imperfections. But when we come down from our emotional high, bit by bit, the little things that we overlooked start to get really annoying indeed.

In our attempt to ‘correct’ this person, we give constructive criticism. There’s only a few outcomes out of this… either your spouse chooses to listen and attempts to really change, listen but nothing changes, or blatantly ignores your comments. If you have a spouse that listens and changes, give thanks for that! It takes a lot of self-initiative and conviction to correct the behaviours we have lived with for so many years of our lives.

After all, we only had our parents to nag us when we were growing up…
“Pick up your clothes from the floor.”
“Stop playing games all night long.”
“Could you please think about your sister for once?”

Imagine, in the place of your parent, it’s your spouse that is saying those lines, except that it is done in an impatient and harsh tone. How would you feel if you are on the receiving end?

Imagine how the situation changes if you inject love, patience and kindness into the same message. How would you approach it?

The reality is, we can’t change people. People can only choose to change themselves. But we can certainly be a catalyst for that change if we choose to love over all weaknesses, even if that person is becoming really, really difficult to love. And that is what it means “to have and to hold for better or for worse”…