The vows after the vows.
By Jordan Gray
Dear (THE NAME OF YOUR PARTNER),
I promise to be gentle with you and your heart.
I promise to allow you to have access to my heart.
I promise to tell you the full truth even when it's sometimes scary to do so.
I promise to put effort into learning how you most like to be listened to and then listen to you in that way as often as I can.
I promise to love and support you when you need it, and lovingly push and encourage you when you need it.
I promise that I will make myself as emotionally fulfilled as possible in my own life, in order that I can show up as my best self for our relationship.
I promise to be aware of, and own, my own emotional triggers and to never hold you responsible for my emotional response to things.
I promise to not waste precious time or energy worrying about who to place blame on. It gets us nowhere and it distracts from our collective goal of coming back to a place of love and connection.
I acknowledge that you are not your parents … and I am not my parents … and although we likely have some residual habits that they passed on to us, we can choose a new way if their way doesn't work for us.
I promise to assume that you have the best of intentions.
I promise to assume that you are always coming from a place of love.
I promise to love and accept every side of you and all of your emotions, moods and insecurities.
I promise to support you in your career, hobbies, passions and anything else that makes you happy.
I promise to continually put effort into our relationship.
I promise to make distractions-free connection time a priority on a regular basis.
I promise to have a one-on-one date night with you at least once every month, no matter how busy or stressful life becomes.
I promise to always be open to talking about our sex life, no matter how challenging certain conversations might be to have.
I promise to always look for how you might be hurting in the moments when you try to push me away.
I promise to never hold the relationship hostage. I will never say "Then why are we even doing this?" or threaten our partnership in any way.
I promise to always cherish our relationship and celebrate it as the safe container for growth that it is.
I promise to always make you feel as safe, comfortable and seen as possible.
Regarding all of the aforementioned statements, I acknowledge that when I say "never” or “always." I will inevitably make mistakes. I am human, and I am not perfect. But I promise to always do my best and to promptly acknowledge when I have messed up.
And above all else, I promise to love you.
This article was originally published at The Good Men Project . Reprinted with permission from the author.