When it comes to love, it’s often the little things that speak the loudest.
Those teensy tiny actions that might seem trivial to an outsider…
But to you, they mean the absolute world.
They’re the actions that show your partner not only loves you but puts you first.
I’m talking about those little gestures like pouring you a cup of coffee in the morning (just how you like it) or always making sure you get the biggest piece of dessert.
But how exactly can you tell if your partner is really putting you first, or if it’s all a show?
To help you figure out where your relationship stands, I’ve put together a list of 8 actions that can help you figure out whether it’s true love…
Or all for show.
1) They remember the little things
It’s often the small details that carry the most weight.
Huge bouquets and fireworks are great, sure, but what’s my middle name?
Does your partner remember things like your favorite ice cream flavor (and it’s a weird niche like burnt butterscotch because strawberry is too easy an answer)?
Or, do they know exactly how you like your coffee – two pumps of sugar-free syrup and a dash of oat milk?
Seemingly insignificant details, you say?
Well, in reality, these little things are far from trivial.
These little things show that they pay attention to you. Those things show the colossal amount that they care.
So if your partner consistently remembers and acts on these little things, it’s a clear indication that they put you first in their lives.
Such actions might be small, but their impact on a relationship is monumental.
2) They value your opinion
Do you have:
A) a partner who steamrolls ahead and accepts a new job on the other side of the country without asking.
B) a partner who sits down and asks for your input in making a pros and cons list.
I sure hope it’s B, because asking for your significant other’s input shows how much you value the other person’s perspective as much as your own. It’s about treating their views with dignity and consideration.
When your partner consistently seeks out your opinion, they’re saying – in no uncertain terms – that your perspective matters. They respect you and value your judgment.
In addition, by including you in decisions, they’re showing that they see you as an equal partner.
They’re demonstrating that they want to share their life with you – not just live alongside you.
This behavior is a powerful sign that your partner puts you first. They respect and admire you, and they want to make decisions that reflect this.
It might seem like a small action, but its implications for the health and happiness of your relationship are enormous.
3) They give you space when you need it
Following on from our previous point, valuing your opinion also extends to respecting your need for personal space and time.
Now, this might sound counter-intuitive…
How exactly does giving you space show that they put you first?
The thing is, understanding and respecting personal boundaries is an absolutely fundamental aspect of any healthy relationship.
Your partner could be the most caring person in the world, but if they don’t understand when to step back and give you some breathing room, that care can feel suffocating.
When your partner recognizes and respects your need for space, it shows a deep level of understanding.
They understand that you’re an individual with unique needs and a separate identity outside of the relationship.
4) They cheer for your wins, big or small
Have you ever shared some good news with your partner, and their reaction was as excited, if not more, as yours?
They’re screaming louder about your promotion than they ever would their own.
And there’s something incredibly comforting and affirming about having a partner who roots for you. Someone who celebrates your victories – big or small – like they’re their own.
This could be anything from landing a new job, completing a tough workout, or even just nailing that tricky recipe you’ve been trying to perfect.
When your partner genuinely rejoices in your happiness, it shows they’re invested in your wellbeing and success. They put you first by prioritizing your joy and accomplishments.
In essence, they become your biggest cheerleader.
This isn’t about false flattery or empty compliments. It’s about sincere excitement and happiness for your achievements.
If your partner does this consistently, consider it a testament to their love for you. They want the best for you and delight in seeing you happy and successful.
This is yet another small action that speaks volumes about their commitment to putting you first in the relationship.
5) They make sacrifices for you
Love is not always about holding hands and steamy candlelight dinners. Sometimes, it’s about making sacrifices.
When your partner puts you first, they’re willing to make sacrifices for your happiness or comfort. This could look like deciding to eat noodles over pizza, because you fancy it.
Or giving up smoking because you have asthma.
Or maybe moving into the city so you can commute more easily to your place of work.
And the big question is whether they do it willingly. Without a fight. Without you having to cause a fuss and list out all the necessary reasons for these sacrifices.
Because it’s this willingness to sacrifice is indicative of a deep-seated love and respect for you. They value your happiness and comfort, even if it means giving up on some of their own interests or desires.
Such actions may seem trivial, but they’re fundamental in showing a partner who truly puts you first.
It’s about prioritizing your needs – sometimes even above their own.
6) They stand by you during tough times
Life isn’t always a bed of roses. There are times when we face challenges and go through tough times.
I believe it’s during these moments when a partner’s true colors shine through.
When your partner stands by your side through thick and thin, it’s a testament to their commitment to you. They’re not just there for the sunny days and fun times. They’re also there when the clouds roll in, and things get tough.
They put you first by offering a shoulder to lean on, a listening ear, or simply their presence during these challenging times.
And let’s be clear: standing by someone during tough times isn’t easy. It requires strength, love, and patience – all 3 of which are extremely important values to look out for and cherish in a life partner.
Check out Justin’s video below on what other sort of values to look out for in a long-term partner:
In supporting someone through thick and thin and forming a strong partnership, you’re showing each other that you’re not just invested in the relationship when things are easy.
You’re also committed to one another when it’s hard, messy, and complicated, as well as when everything is rainbows and sparkles.
Their support during these testing times is perhaps one of the most significant signs that your partner genuinely puts you first. It’s a small action with a profound impact on the strength and resilience of your relationship.
7) They support your personal growth
In a healthy relationship, a partner who puts you first will also prioritize your personal growth. They won’t hold you back out of fear or insecurity, even if they worry about some of your decisions.
No; instead, they’ll push you towards your dreams and cheer you on as you chase them.
Perhaps it’s encouraging you to take that painting class you’ve always wanted to try, although your drawing skills are quite dire. Or maybe it’s supporting you as you decide to change careers and initiating a big change within both of your lives.
Whatever form it takes, this support is a clear indication that they put your happiness and fulfillment first.
If your partner does this, it’s a sure sign they deeply care for you.
They want to see you grow, evolve, and reach your full potential, and are willing to stand by your side as you do so.
8) They express their love and appreciation regularly
And here we are, at our final point – expressing love and appreciation.
It might seem obvious, but it’s surprising how often this aspect is overlooked in relationships.
When your partner consistently expresses their love and appreciation for you, it shows that they genuinely cherish you. They don’t take your presence in their life for granted.
This could be through saying “I love you”, leaving sweet notes, or simply expressing gratitude for the little things you do.
It’s a small action, but one that has a profound effect on the relationship. It reinforces the bond between you two and fosters a deep sense of love and respect.
Moreover, it shows that they’re not just with you because they need you. They’re with you because they appreciate you. They value your presence in their life and aren’t afraid to express it.
This consistent expression of love and appreciation is a powerful sign of a partner who truly puts you first. And as we wrap up our list, it’s important to remember that these small actions often hold the deepest meanings.
In the end, it all comes down to love, respect, and a genuine appreciation for each other.
A partner who puts you first will show this in myriad ways, some of which we’ve discussed in this article.
These small actions listed above may seem insignificant on their own, but when put together, they paint a picture of a partner who truly prioritizes you.
But keep in mind; no relationship is perfect. We all stumble and make mistakes. The key is to keep growing and learning together, because love is a two-way street which involves a great deal of team work and cooperation.
May we all strive to be partners who put each other first, in both big and small ways.
Because that’s what love is all about, isn’t it?