In a perfect world, our loved ones would know instinctively how to love us in a way that fulfills our needs. Unfortunately, our world is not picture-perfect. Sometimes, our loved ones express their affection for us in the best way possible. The issue arises when it is not in the desired form. Instead of searching without success, we should develop the skill of asking. Here are some ways to initiate a conversation in which you both learn more about each other in order to ask for the love you need.
Before you ask your partner for the love you require, you should take your concerns to God in prayer to ensure that you are requesting something that your partner can reasonably provide. For instance, if you need love because your parents did not provide it, your partner cannot provide it. Instead, it is something that God must first heal in your heart. If you need the kind of love that will make you feel worthy, valued, and important, that’s a need that perhaps only God can satisfy, as everyone else may consider it impossible.
Take your problems to God first and ask Him to reveal whether you desire to embrace and receive His love. As your love for God grows, you will come to understand who you are in His eyes and be able to accept the love of others. Knowing how much God loves you will also give you the confidence to ask your partner to love you and treat you according to your desires and God’s will.
With due respect
Women feel they cannot live without love, while men feel the same way about respect. Possibly for this reason, the Bible instructs husbands to love their wives in Ephesians 5:25 and urges wives to respect their husbands in Ephesians 5:33. Men and women must maintain mutual respect when discussing sensitive issues.
Respect your partner by speaking without accusation or sarcasm, which will only cause the other person to become defensive. Ephesians 4:29 reminds us to speak only what edifies others based on their needs and benefits those who listen. Focus instead on remaining respectful and building up your partner, rather than tearing them down.
When a partner requests something we believe we’re already providing, it’s natural to assume we’re doing something incorrectly. Your partner probably believes they are already providing you with the love you seek. Therefore, you should do your best to avoid making them defensive by using affirming, positive language in your request.
Instead of beginning with what they’re doing incorrectly, begin by praising what they’re doing well and who they are. Instead of using sarcasm, initiate the conversation with compassion instead of complaint and criticism. Instead of telling your partner that they no longer prioritize you, express how much you miss them and inquire about how you can begin prioritizing time together. Instead of presenting the issue as the other person’s problem, a surefire way to affirm your request is to focus on something you can both work on.
Concerning your partner
Asking anyone for anything is humbling. Therefore, we cannot enjoy the position of humility that asking for something places us in, and we can request something without considering how our partner will respond. When requesting the love you require, consider Philippians 2:3, which reminds us to act with humility, regarding others as more important than ourselves, as opposed to acting selfishly or out of vain pride.
Put yourself in the other person’s shoes and consider how you would react if your partner asked you the same question in the same manner. This may prompt you to reconsider your approach to the situation. Utilize phrases that you desire to hear or that you know your partner desires to hear. When you ask a question with your loved one in mind, you can avoid being self-centered or accusatory. Ask your partner what they need from you in order to avoid making a demand.
Consider the appropriate manner, time, and location before posing your question. When and how you ask can sometimes make a significant difference. For instance, it may be best to discuss potential concerns with your spouse after they have settled in at home, eaten, and changed into comfortable attire. When they are calm and have nothing else on their minds, they are more receptive to what you have to say.
God is on your side when it comes to seeking wisdom for this discussion. James 1:5 reminds us that if we lack knowledge, we should turn to God because He will give us insight generously and without criticism. Ask God for insight, then use it to request the love you require.
With equanimity and reason
It is easy to let your emotions get the best of you when requesting the love you desire. It is difficult to verbalize one’s feelings when they are muddled and confusing. However, if you begin the conversation logically rather than emotionally, you will have a greater chance of being respected and heard.
Your loved one may believe they are already providing you with the love you require, so avoid expressing negative emotions such as resentment, sarcasm, or anger; they will only make a difficult topic more awkward. Choose a suitable time to discuss your situation after immersing it in prayer. If you are feeling frustrated, angry, or stressed about something, your negative emotions may bring out the worst in you.
Also helpful is being specific about your desire to feel loved. If you restrict your request to ambiguous phrases, your partner may have trouble understanding what you mean and what you require. Communicate to your loved one what they can do to make you feel loved, and be understanding if they are surprised by your request. It’s not easy to ask your partner for the love you want, but maintaining the relationship without it will be even more challenging.