How would you describe/show unconditional love for your partner?

I'm in a relationship with my boyfriend for 5 years now. He says he loves me unconditionally, but I don't love him the same and I don't know how to love.

there's a few things he does that upset me and he says I shouldn't try to change who he is, I should love him for him being himself. that sounds one sided to me considering that he tells me the things about me that annoys him.

I've been researching this and understand the 5 love languages, that not everyone loves the same. I've looked up how unconditional love has no limitations, is forgiving and puts love above all things. but something just doesn't seem right

how do you describe unconditional love and how would you show it?

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  • True unconditional love doesn't exist. If someone ruined your life or cheated on you or tried to kill you or someone you care about you wouldn't still love them.

    There are the five love languages which explain how different people express love and what type of maintenance they need in order to feel loved, and then there are multiple different types of love. There's emphatic where you're in love with someone. It's the one where you're crazy about them and want to do everything for them and never leave them. There's maternal love, platonic love, and there is lust. Look up pathos, Eros.

    You both need to understand that you won't like everything about each other all the time. There's nothing wrong with that. I promise you that you'll miss every bit of it if you ever separate. The good and the bad. If you care about him and want to be with him no matter what, even if he loses his job, or his legs, then that loyalty is the best kind of love there is in my opinion. It's hard to find. So long as you both care for and support each other and respect each other, it doesn't really matter how you label it or what kind of arbitrary category it falls into.

    You just have to express the level of discomfort you have with what he's doing and ask him to please just try to change that one habit. If there's something he can't stand about you, then offer to do the same for one thing. Keep things fair and even. Even if it doesn't feel fair. Men are like children and we need treats to make us do anything we don't want to, and as humans we are not used to having a second party changing our own habits that we have never had to change before. If he loves you unconditionally then he will try to fix the issue because he cares about you, but it could be seen both ways. You have to give too.

    What's the issue anyways?

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    • I agree with everything you're saying. I've taken the "5 love languages" test and I've yet to ask my boyfriend to do it (I don't think he'll agree with it but I'm hoping it'll give me a better idea on things). And I know I'm not perfect. Hence why I'm here asking for advice before I speak to him, making sure how I feel about things is correct or whether I'm being unfair.

      So there's a few things that I find disrespectful; he leaves his clothes on the floor (for weeks) after I've washed them, I ask him to shower sometimes but I get ignored. He worked for my dad for a while and would come home and complain about him calling him an asshole and stupid, I told him that I understand venting, but not for validation, and it hurt my feelings the way he spoke about my dad. He brushed it of and stated that it was his boss and he'll talk about him any way he wants.

    • pt2. recently he told me that he doesn't find me attractive right now (I guess because I've been very low emotionally these last few months so I've been unmotivated, anti-social, sad). He goes to after parties and makes out with other girls as dares, I've told him this hurts me and he argued that I was trying to change who he is. He talks a lot about how you can't rely on anyone, but asks me to do things last minute and when I don't come through for him, gets annoyed. he's friends with two of his exs and has talked to them about me negatively, calling me a pmsing bitch and saying he doesn't think we'll be together for much longer. Has told me that I'm not on the same level of understanding as he is about unconditional love. Tells me I'm controlling and possessive.

    • Omg. Ambarlee, you need to leave him like asap. That's so far from overreacting as possible. Those aren't the things that someone who loves you does. Love is understanding, love is forgiving, love is kind, love is great and nothing about those thing is any of that.

      Someone who cares about you, who cares about your feelings, doesn't cheat on you and blame it on a dare. They don't dismiss your feelings and blame you for everything.

      I will be completely honest. I've been a terrible boyfriend before and have done some of those things. None of them are acceptable and I regret all of it, but he doesn't appreciate you and he never will until after he realizes what he's lost. This is coming from someone who was in his shoes.

      You clearly love him a lot, much more than he loves you, but this isn't a healthy relationship. You shouldn't tolerate anyone that puts you down, dismisses your feelings, cheats on you, or brings so much negativity into your life.

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  • Unconditional love is required of a parent. My daughter, throws a tantrum or says I hate you, my feelings for her doesn't change. I still love her and when her tantrum is over, our relationship is restored. My vision of a relationship is for selfless love. I think of my partners feelings before mine. In either case, we should be attempting to conform to our partner's needs as well which means he should be attempting to appease you even though you aren't demanding change.

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    • I thought the same. unconditional love is true through parents loving kids. not so much in relationships. if your partner threw a tantrum over something stupid would you not stick up for yourself and ask them to be reasonable? of course you'd still love them once the problem was resolved, but if it happens again and again would you start to distance yourself and wonder of they love you?

    • You certainly would need to protect yourself. In any case, love should be reciprocal. Each partner must commit themselves to the relationship and he should be equally invented. The trouble is once you begin negotiating love it seems less like love.

  • Unconditional love means you love that person no matter what. So tell me this the things your boyfriend does that u don't like does it really effect you? You got to ask yourself how would you feel if he wasn't in your life anymore? Would you be ok if he moved on and met someone else? Unconditional love means you love that person and younwould feel lost without them. If you don't have that for him then you're best to let him go and find someone that will love him the way he deserves to be loved

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    • he makes out with other girls at after parties as dares. he bags out my parents a lot, he doesn't put away his clothes after I've washed them (leaving them on the ground or a chair), doesn't bathe when I ask him to (he has no sense of smell, literally), he goes put every weekend nights until 1 sometimes 5am. these are just some examples.

      Yes I do feel that I'd be lost without him. he does do a lot of things for us. I feel I'm very understanding and have been patient with things. I uphold love in my mind before talking to him about things.

      the making out with girls for example, when I asked him not to because it hurts my feelings, he felt that was a restriction. and if I loved him unconditionally, I should be fine with it

    • Woooo he makes out with other girls at parties and you stay with him? No wonder you aren't in love with him , he doesn't respect you , get rid of him case closed u deserve way better then that someone that respects you not using you and walking on u

    • He ldoesnt love you you unconditionally he loves manipulating you

  • Unconditional. Without limitation. Under no condition does the love change. Does that mean i won't leave you if you cross me? No. It means I've determined; regarding the person in question, to love through the bull. You do things wrong I have no anger I just address it like its a simple issue. Does it change how I feel for you? The most minor of shifts in comparison to the drastic blowback other people might experience. I know your mistakes are my mistakes. More accurately our mistakes. I failed to make a preemptive act to make my feelings known on the matter in question. I understand you're not a mind reader and I have no right to have those dream filled expectations. I can address the issue directly in a calm sensible manner cause I love you and want you to know we can grow together through the problems we come to face.
    Now those are the life long minor mistakes. How do I react through the spectrum to say her cheating. I still understand there are a number of factors that lead up to the act. For the most part the reason is simple. Its just you. Whatever number of factors and things just happened. Things being her and her poor decision making skills. Whatever. She disgusts me cause even though we had something it would prove to be something less than solid. I do not become filled with malice and behave like a Neanderthal. I simply take my leave out of respect for myself. The love that i have will remain but so will the disgust. Cause that's the nature of the truth in this matter. Can we be friends, yes and no. I can be a shoulder to cry on over telecommunication. It will hurt too much to be near her. We can keep in touch, but to what length I do not know. However I will not want to see each other in person. I don't want to see her unless I want eye candy which is not up to her to determine for me but such would be life. If she says no it is what it is cause that would have already been the set understanding and I would have to accept. Unless I wanted to push but whatever. In the end I would still love her. Would possibly still go to her defense were her life in danger.

    So if one determines that there will be no factor to challenge the love residing in their heart. One can be unconditionally in love. It just depends on ones character.

    Just an opinion. I know nothing.

    Except the part where I currently love a girl who will be with everyone but me. And my feelings remain the same.

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  • Things can't be forced, how you love or how deeply you feel it should come with thinking about it and acting on both the small things that show it and the big things that wouldn't be wasted or considered for someone else, being open about your feeling like you can't show it will both let him know how you do feel and perhaps open options for learning, think about why you are here and the hard parts that have been overcome, now as with him changing it's hard, some traits are pet peeves or annoyances and they are more on you to overcome, (and if he's wanting to go above and beyond) my ex of 10 years hated me smoking, the smell, Taste in my mouth, made her gag, so I only smoked outside, stayed away while I did and usually kept some distance for abit just after I had smoked, I hated much of her taste of music so would give me a break and not force me to hear it, love is give and take, though if the behaviour is actually toxic or a big enough deal it needs to be delt with, when it goes to long you will explode and both act in ways you will regret

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  • I had to laugh when you wrote that he makes out with girls and in the next sentence talk about not putting laundry away? Like they are similar offenses? He is treating you like garbage and manipulating you big time. Dump him, you deserve better.

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    • Too bad I can only give this one vote. This is the answer. This guy is emotionally abusive and you need to get out of this.

    • Thank you!

  • Would you drive 5 hours one way to your significant other during work hours if they locked their keys in the car and you had the only spare? Would you drive it to help them or just tell them to get a mechanic to jimmy it open?

    Selfless actions are one of the greatest indicators of unconditional love.

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    • I have actually done this, he works out at the airport so I'm often taking this to him last minute like lunch or tool kit keys when he forgets.

      thank you for this example of expressing unconditional love

  • It's the small and simplest things that show unconditional love. The first one is free. Listen to your lover. Don't just hear her or listen to her. Feel her feelings. I never made any major decisions regarding anything without sitting down discussing with her. I knew I was going to buy something already but, I felt better including her in making "our" decision together as a team,.

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  • i dont think you can give someone your unconditional love except for a child or parent. for anything else you must find the one you live unconditionally. i am not too familiar with the large body of thought that has been done on love but i think much of it is quaint and not quite hitting the nail on the head

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  • Unconditional love is love without agenda. It is an absolute and largely I believe conceptual from a human understanding as there is no duality in it IE there would then have to exist unconditional hate/disdain. It differs from ‘man made’ ego driven love / hate. In a relationship mutual understanding, compromise, respect, self sacrifice and control is needed to strengthen this relationship. If he cannot or chooses to ignore your concerns this is not unconditional love it is rude, selfish, and arrogant at best.

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  • Does unconditional love mean you can do absolutely anything - anything at all - and they'll still love you? I'm not sure that's true for most people

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  • Respect, affection, spending quality time together, understanding each other.

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  • I don't like my partner. I'm dating her 'cause she's rich.

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  • He clearly has no love or respect for you. The one word that differentiates unconditional love from any other type of love is fidelity.

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  • Love is above all,!! If he kisses others he's using you for sex and as a maid

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  • nu trusting sum 1 once you get to know their personality

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  • I would jump in front of that trolley.

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  • I don't believe that unconditional love exists

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  • there's no such thing wtf

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  • What are you trying to get him to change?

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    • one example was I asked him to stop making out with other girls at after parties, even if it is a dare. his argument was "don't try to change who I am" referring to taking the dare no matter what it is. I said that he could take alternatives and ask to be given another dare. he still disagreed.

    • If he can't control himself making out with random woman at parties he's not ready to be in a relationship

    • well I am his 13th girlfriend so that's probably a decent point

  • i could die for him if its necessiry

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  • I read that as well. I totally agree on them as the foundations. Above everything, I find my most necessary love language is physical touch. If that is not there I can’t live with just the others. It is so vital and imperative to me. If I get that, the others certainly follow. I show that in the forms of gifts and surprises. I put her above no other and I show that to her mentally and physically and I will put her needs always first above my own. I need that form of validation and I certainly can feel or not feel her love via just her touch.

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  • Unconditional love is what parents often feel for their children.

    All romantic love is conditional.

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  • What does he do that upsets you? Now think of why it upsets you.

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    • because I feel disrespected. and start to not trust him because of his actions

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    • @FitNerd this has crossed my mind, but I think he doesn't realize he's doing it. Is that common? Are there people that are abusive to their partner and even realize what they're doing?

    • As someone who was abusive I can say that they don't realize they're doing it. They are negative people that react to things. They're overly defensive because they anticipate criticism and make themselves the victim unintentionally because they've lived spoiled lives where they've been able to do, say, or get whatever they want. They don't know how to treat a woman right because they weren't raised right, and regardless of fault or intentions the problem here is that what he is doing is so wrong. Staying with him will only make things worse because in his head he knows you won't leave, and if you try to confront him about any of it he will try to convince you that he is right as he's convinced himself. And because he knows you won't leave he will push your boundaries more and more until either he can do whatever he wants, or it destroys you.

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