True friends are forever. It is amazing how long we keep true friendships. From primary school age and across oceans, we take a feeling of belonging and connectedness with us and maintain friendships.
Divorcing is actually the end of a very special friendship. It is a friendship between partners and lovers. If we remember to treat our partners like we treat those special friends, it would probably make life much easier.
Friends are God’s way of taking care of us
We may have misunderstandings, disagreements and conflicts with friends, but we never forget the bond we have between us and we are always willing to work out our problems. Just like any friendship, marriage is a way for two people to complete each other.
In order for marriage to work, the couple needs to master the three functions of marriage: partnership, love and friendship. These three functions are fundamental to the success of every marriage. We talk a lot about sharing responsibilities, we talk about increasing the love, but it seems that often, the friendship is a little neglected. In fact, surveys reveal that if there is one thing that will enable a couple to weather even the toughest of times, it is friendship.
Life is partly what we make it and partly what is made by the friends whom we choose
– Tehyi Hsieh
If you want to stay married for a long time, find a way to be your partner’s best friend.
The first step to success of the friendship in any marriage is to make sure you align your definitions with your partner’s. Here are some questions couples should ask themselves and then discuss with each other if they want to grow their relationship.
- What is love?
- What is not love?
- How do I express love?
- How would I like to be loved?
- How do we successfully combine love and marriage?
- What is partnership?
- What is not partnership?
- What am I willing to sacrifice for the partnership?
- What I am expecting my partner to sacrifice for the partnership?
- How do we successfully combine partnership and marriage?
- What is friendship (humor, open communication, tough times, trust, support)?
- What is not friendship?
- What do I expect from a best friend?
- Who is my best friend?
- What is a best friend?
- How many best friends can I have?
- How do we successfully combine friendship and marriage?
When you finish answering these questions, share your thoughts with your partner. You will not believe how many divorcees never discussed their expectations with their partner. It is important to remember that discussing such important things when you are happy, in love and with a willingness to share is much easier to do than when you are upset, angry and fighting with each other.
True friendship requires maturity mixed with responsibility.
The most beautiful discovery that true friends can make is that they can grow separately without growing apart
– Elizabeth Foley
Friendship is EVERYTHING!
Friendship: a building contract you sign with laughter and break with tears
If there is true friendship between husband and wife, the marriage can avoid landing on the rocks. Instead, it becomes a rock-hard marriage, which no individual or circumstance can shake.
Friendship in a marriage means that the marriage will be pregnant with memories of sharing, caring and happiness.
Here is a list of different definitions of friendship. Which one of them is yours?
True friendship is like sound health; the value of it is seldom known until it be lost
A new friendship is like an unripened fruit – it may become either an orange or a lemon
If you judge people, you have no time to love them
– Mother Teresa
Grief can take care of itself, but to get the full value of joy you must have somebody to divide it with
– Mark Twain
Friendship is the golden ribbon that ties the world together
What is a friend? A single soul in two bodies
My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me
– Henry Ford
A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words
A friend is one who believes in you when you have ceased to believe in yourself
Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival
– C. S. Lewis
Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you help them to become what they are capable of being
There is no hope of joy except in human relations
– Antoine de Sainte-Exupery
A friend is like a rainbow. They brighten your life when you’ve been through a storm
You are married to three people
For me, having my partner as my boyfriend for 28 years (last month) means I am married to 3 people. Gal is my partner, with whom I share my house, my kids and my finance. He is also my lover, with whom I share my bed, and he is my friend, with whom I share my joys and my sorrows. In many ways, we are so different but we still compliment each other, much like two feet. Having two different feet makes us stable and strong. This means that in marriage, the differences between us can be embraced to make us better people. Try walking with two right feet – it does not work.
Friends are like pillars on your porch. Sometimes they hold you up and sometimes they lean on you
Many times, the same qualities that attracted couples to each other are the same ones that cause them to separate. Many people say that their partner is not the same person anymore, forgetting that they have changed too and that true friendship lives beyond changes.
The best friend in us should keep wanting the other to have a good life and should keep supporting him or her no matter what happens.
Here’s to friendship,
This post is part of the series Save Your Marriage:
- Self-Regulation in Your Marriage
- How to Save Yourself from Divorce
- Marriage and Divorce Statistics
- The Marriage Institution
- Marriage is the Foundation of Families
- The Unpleasant Side of Divorce
- How to Get Things Wrong in a Marriage
- Marriage and Self Talk
- More About Self Talk
- Facts vs. Meaning in Marriage
- All Men Are… All Women Are…
- When Two Do Not Become One
- Marriage and Money
- Be Your Partner’s Best Friend
- Relationship Between Two Onions
- The Greatest Gift: Staying Married
- Marriage of Singles
- The "Right" Trap
- The Intention Trap
- Best Marriage Quotes
- 10 Rules for Civilized Dialogue
- 10 Tips for Re-Building Trust
- The King and His Servants
- The Nitpicker
- Expressing Feelings in a Marriage
- Don’t Be On Guard
- Don’t Clam Up
- Have Good Sex to Save Your Marriage
- Trust (or The Boy Who Cried Wolf)
- Emergency Relationship Coaching Essentials
- Save Your Marriage with Better Time Management
- Choice Theory Can Save Your Marriage