By Ghadeer Habash, Internationally Certified Career Trainer

Many couples wait for occasions like anniversaries, birthdays and Valentine’s Day to express love. Sure, who doesn’t love to receive a gift or be taken out to dinner? But, for me at least, there is no greater gift than that which outlasts a box of chocolates and a bouquet of flowers.

Love is lived 365 days per year and not only celebrated once! I want my partner to:

Respect my time

I love my husband deeply, but I also have other important things in my life – my extended family, friends, hobbies and work. He is not a partner who keeps ringing my mobile phone while I’m at work or constantly asks what time I’m leaving the office as this does not respect my time and space. Love is not about ownership and control.

Respect my family and friends

Yes, I need my husband, but I also need my extended family and friends to be in my life and this would be difficult if I had a partner who tried to pull me away from my dearest ones or is always at odds with them.

Respect my interests

My husband and I share some of the same interests, which is great of course, but I also have interests that don’t align with my husband’s. That doesn’t mean I should abandon those interests, tolerate him mocking my interests, or making me feel that they are not worthwhile.

Respect my work choices

I’m a career woman and my husband respects my choice. Asking anyone to quit a job for you is not genuine love; it’s selfish and controlling. I’m thankful for a partner who supports me all the way, helps make my life easier and wants me to shine; that is TRUE LOVE.

I may go out to dinner, accept jewellery, flowers or chocolate but what I appreciate far more are the everyday gestures of love; when my husband:

 
Says he is proud of me, my contributions and achievements

 
Shares responsibilities, from housework to cooking and raising our children

 
Encourages my personal and professional growth

 
Is supporting me as I become the best version of myself in every aspect of my life

Here’s how I add it all up…

Flowers, dinner and chocolate: JD150

The gift of respect, acceptance and understanding: priceless.

You can contact Habash at habashghadeer@gmail.com

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