Every relationship is different, but sooner or later true love shines through.
When it’s real love grows and when it’s not it dies and that’s just the way it is.
Here are the top signs that somebody is really in love in a relationship.
1) They go out of their way to help their partner
The first sign that somebody truly loves their partner is that they go out of their way to help.
This does not mean that they are a simp or a doormat.
But they will go out of their way to help their partner.
That’s because true love is not a transaction.
True love wants to serve and help the loved one no matter the cost or the outer calculations.
If that means driving two hours to pick up his girlfriend or going out of her way to spend time with her boyfriend in hospital, it’s going to happen.
Love doesn’t count the cost.
2) They give up the need to always be right
By the same token, another of the signs that somebody is truly in love is that they give up the need to always be right.
This is harder than it sounds.
From a young age many of us find it hard to admit when we’re wrong, but also to not argue when we know we’re right but it’s not being recognized.
Part of being in love is sometimes allowing your partner to believe he or she is right when they insist.
Part of being in love is allowing your partner grace from time to time.
This doesn’t mean being a pushover or always giving your partner their way.
But it does mean surrendering your ego somewhat and having a bit more easygoing attitude about needing to be proven right.
3) They always see the best in their partner’s actions
The next of the signs of genuine love is always seeing the best in their partner.
A person who is truly in love will not only give their partner the benefit of the doubt but will actually perceive their partner’s actions in the best possible light.
Of course, this has potential upsides and downsides depending on the situation.
For example, if their partner is cheating, a person’s perception of their weird statements and behavior as simply exhaustion or nerves would ultimately turn out to be naive and obscure the betrayal.
But in a situation where their partner really is just exhausted and needs support, perceiving their odd behavior and statements in a forgiving way could turn out to be correct and save the relationship by not overreacting.
4) They love their partner in the good times and the bad
When somebody is truly in love they don’t put conditions on their love.
While there are likely lines they will not allow to be crossed such as abuse or cheating, nobody who’s truly in love says “I love you completely, except if that happens,” or “except if you end up becoming part of that political party or religion.”
Love isn’t a contract like signing up to rent a car, or it certainly shouldn’t be.
Real love isn’t about the outer labels or agreeing on everything or enjoying only great times together.
Life is full of ups and downs, and when somebody is truly in love then he or she signs up to navigate those peaks and valleys with the one they love.
That’s the deal! And there’s no place they’d rather be, anyway.
5) They tell their partner the truth even when it’s hard
The next key behavior of a person in love is that they tell the truth to their partner.
It’s easy to lie in a relationship, but lies always have a cost.
Even if lies are small or never end up being discovered, they erode the foundation of the relationship and the intimacy and bond of trust that exists.
It could just be lying about indulging in an addiction to smoking when you said you’d quit, or watching pornography once and then claiming you didn’t…
But the person who is truly in love will open up about his or her behavior.
They will tell the truth even if it’s ugly.
They will risk a breakup even if they are scared.
Because true love could never live with lying to the most important person in the world.
6) They make an effort to meet their partner’s family and friends
Let’s face it:
Being in a relationship is one thing, but meeting somebody’s family and friends isn’t always easy or fun.
Yet somebody who’s truly in love will go out of their way to meet and appreciate the friends and family of their partner.
This is because they are so much in love that they put aside their own disinterest or even dislike enough to go out of their way and meet those important to their loved one.
This is definitely a big sign, and avoidance of meeting those close to their partner can be a strong signal of lack of commitment or deep interest.
7) They care about and respect their partner’s values and beliefs
The next of the signs of somebody being genuinely in love is a real respect of their partner’s beliefs and values.
This doesn’t necessarily mean agreement, but it does mean respect.
There’s a caveat here that’s really crucial to mention, however:
Respect is the right word, not adoration or almost always agreeing.
The habit of somebody always agreeing with their partner or seeking their approval to the extent of lying and pretending to agree with them is incredibly disempowering and toxic.
It prevents a real relationship and is a sign of lack of self-love.
When you truly love somebody you care about what makes them tick and you want to hear and understand their experiences.
But the idea you automatically agree with them is completely wrong.
You listen and respect, but you never lie about where you stand or your own experiences either.
After all, it’s better to break up than to be loved as somebody you’re not.
8) They miss their partner when he or she is away for a while…
The next of the signs of true love is when somebody misses his or her partner when they’re away.
This is a balance of course.
Codependency in the sense of getting extremely depressed or shutting down when one’s partner is away is not healthy at all.
But a healthy sense of sadness and fond desire for the return of one’s partner is indeed a sign of love.
If somebody’s partner goes away on a business trip for a week and they don’t think of them once when they’re gone or only occasionally regarding practical stuff like who’s taking out the garbage while they’re gone?
9) …But they’re ever possessive or controlling of their partner
At the same time as the person truly in love misses their partner, they are not controlling or possessive.
True love allows freedom and allows the other person their time and space to live their own life.
True love is not trying to control and define everything about the relationship between two people.
It allows spontaneity, it allows the other person to have a social life, it allows time apart.
For better or worse
Marriage vows famously contain the promise for spouses to love each other “for better or worse.”
This means that love is not transactional. It doesn’t end when your wife gets ill or when your husband loses his job.
This is deeply true. Real love doesn’t come and go like the tides.
But love also can’t be forced. It’s the ultimate voluntary and free act.
That’s why looking for the above signs is so valuable. If your partner is doing these things or you are doing these things, then it’s clear that the love is genuine and enduring.
If not, there may be other stops along your love journey to bring you toward love that’s more meaningful and deep than what you’re currently experiencing.