I Love You Because

Page Highlights: really fun, build closeness, and helps if you are writing your own vows

We’ve all heard of married couples who reach the point where one will say to other “I don’t love you anymore.”

Ralph & Mary in Savannah, GA

The reasons that a husband or wife get to that point vary, but part of it is the loss of romantic love. Because that loss of love can come for different reasons, preventing its loss varies too.

But part of staying in love is remembering what you fell in love with in the first place, and often at the same time beginning to focus on the negatives.

The reasons that a husband or wife get to that point vary, but part of it is the loss of romantic love. Because that loss of love can come for different reasons, preventing its loss varies too.

But part of staying in love is remembering what you fell in love with in the first place, and often at the same time beginning to focus on the negatives.

I recall years ago a minister in a nearby town referring a couple to me for marriage counseling. I agreed to meet with the couple, but then only the husband showed up at my office.

Since his wife didn’t make the trip over, to help me get to know her better, he had written out a very long list of her negative qualities that nearly filled one side of a legal size yellow pad!

I glanced at the list and then asked him if she had any positive qualities. He then pointed to a corner on the sheet in small box where he had listed two or three of her positive points.

I’ve often related that story to make the point that I’m sure that when that couple first married, this husband’s list was surely just the opposite . . . that is, he had a long list of her positives and if he had a list of her negatives it was very short.

But somehow in life that list had gotten reversed. It may have just been the difficulties of ordinary life, or they had just become lazy had stopped growing in their marriage.

But clearly, the husband had forgotten

why he fell in love with his wife in the first place.

This exercise is intended to help this from ever happening in your marriage, and you never hearing those devastating words, “I don’t love you anymore.”

You might also enjoy watching the humorous video near the bottom of this page that I put together a few years back for the marriage prep course.

The Exercise:

Answer as much as you can below.

You can share your answers with each other now.

But you’ll also want to seal this page in an envelope and put it away with your other important pagers. Get it out on your anniversary and enjoy it all over again.

You will also want to look at it when your marriage hits a rough spot. When we are in conflict with our mates, we tend to magnify the negative and minimize the positive.

We also forget the past and what it was really like.

Your notes will remind you why you married this person.

  • I am marrying you because:
  • The things I admire / like about you include:
  • Our relationship is good right now because:
  • My favorite “memory” of us right now is:
  • We share these common values, beliefs and goals in life:

If you are writing your own wedding vows,

you might find that this exercise helps you with the “content.”

Resources:

There are some good books on keeping the romance in your marriage, including specifically a romance guide for men The RoMANtics Guide: Hundreds of Creative Tips for a Lifetime of Love and 2,002 Romantic Ideas: Special Moments You Can Share With the One You Love.

What are your best romantic ideas? If you would, leave a reply to share those for others who might want to try them.

Here’s the video mentioned above that I did for the marriage course:

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21 comments to I Love You Because

  • Lauren & Jon

    This has been my favorite exercise so far! It’s funny, Jon told someone the other day that one of the reasons that he loves is is because I am a “hard worker” – we work together, so he gets to see this everyday. I told him I was disappointed because what he said wasn’t very romantic, but he argued that to him, this is one of the best compliments he could give. When we were talking about our common values and goals in life, we both mentioned that working hard is a value we have and our goals involved our company we have together. It realized then how much I valued hard work, and that Jon’s compliment to me was meant to be important, it’s still romantic even though it wasn’t the old “because you’re beautiful,etc” – it’s important to both of us.

  • Connie Noward and Barry Thiessen

    This was a great activity. We chose to answer each question face to face with each other. It was a very sentimental moment for both of us. He loves me because I am forgiving and a wonderful mother to our son. I love him because he is a hard worker and very sensitive to my needs and the needs of his family. He is a romantic and I’m not. I love the way he keeps the romance going in our relationship, because I know I would miss it if he changed. Our favorite moment was the birth of our son Tyler 3 years ago, that is the one thing we always agree on.

  • Nancy and Adam

    We both really enjoyed this exercise. We aren’t writing our own wedding vows, but we are doing the wine box and love letters. The concept is that each of us will write love letters to each other before our wedding ceremony that explains what we love about the other person and why we fell in love. We seal these letters along with a bottle of wine into a box and open it on our 5 year anniversary. We read the letters and drink the wine and celebrate our marriage. However, if we are to hit troubled waters, we would open the box early and read the letters and drink the wine in hopes to rekindle the love we may have lost. This exercise reminded us a lot of our wine box and we are both looking forward to that 5 year anniversary.

  • Michael and Terry

    We seem to be one of those sappy couples….we love each other, love our children and just love our life together. Again, another great exercise that makes us feel even closer than we did before we started this journey!

  • Taryn & Andy

    We really loved this one! Very cute way to remind each other later down the road of why were love/married each other. Rough patches hit and little reminds such as these lists tucked away will help a ton when we may need a little reminder. I like the wine box idea a few of the other couples mentioned as well. The combo could make for a lovely evening, one anniversary down the line!

  • Jackie & Mark

    We loved this exercise! A great way to pause during the wedding planning process to reflect on why we are doing all of this. While we both communicate and show each other that we love each other often I think we forget to articulate why we love each other sometimes. It is one of those things that just does not come up in everyday conversation – but perhaps it should come up more often. We also loved the idea in one of the comments above about the wine box! We are definitely planning to do that as well.

  • Andy & Stacy

    It sounds silly, but we send each other texts that say “I love you more than…” and we fill in the blank with whatever is going on at the moment. i.e. vacation, laying on the couch watching movies, entertaining family, our favorite food, etc. Without discussing it, we also tend to compliment each other in front of others and do unexpected little things for each other i.e. run an errand, cross something off the honey-do list, etc. My favorite way to show affection for each other is taking the time to plan special events for just the two of us–we love country music and attend a few concerts every year and take turns every year choosing a mini vacation for just the two of us. On date nights we find ourselves discussing our top 5 memories of all time and try to dream up new ways to top the list! I like the exercise of printing out the list and reviewing it years from now.

  • Katie and John

    We love each other, our life, and love the idea of what we want our life to be. I couldnt ask for anything or anyone else. I dont think he can either. Even though my O.C.D does annoy him at times. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Dustin and Katie

    Dustin especially found this one funny because he referred to it as “arguing with yourself”. Sometimes we get upset about something one another has done. Those negative emotions do sometimes cause you to over look the positive things about that person. But you’ve written these things down in advance it’s harder to ignore what you are telling to yourself.

  • Lindsey and Rhett

    Fun activity to remind us why we fell in love and the journey we’ve taken so far. One of our favorite memories together is moving from Arizona to Tennessee. One might think a 1700 mile road trip isn’t a glamorous love story but that’s one of our favorite memories and times together.

  • Kelly and Larry

    We love each other, and we love what we are planning for our lives together. Reminiscing about our relationship has been great; it just excites us more about our future together.

  • Mary Ann and Christoper Griffiths

    It seems the most common between us is the admiration in each others strengths. Our goals seem to meet up. We love each other for different reasons and our favorite memories of each other shows that. We can’t wait to add to those memories.

  • Maggie and Jason

    Jason and I had similar answers to each other. We both support each other and are grateful for our family values and positivity. This exercise also helped bring up some of our fun memories we’ve had together.

  • Dawn and Mike

    This exercise served as a reminder to us about all of the things we see and love in each other. How much we respect each other and value our relationship and the importance of comunciating all of this on a daily basis.

  • Brooke & Lucas

    We really liked this exercise because it was nice for each of us to hear why we are loved and getting married. It reminded us that we are perfect for each other! We have the same goals and attributes that make us admire one another. It was also sweet to reminisce about our favorite memories over the last seven years.

  • D & S

    This was the easiest exercise yet. It was so nice to talk about our likes, our dreams and special moments together. It was a chance to affirm each other and our love.

  • Amanda & Nate

    This was a great exercise, and a real sentimental tear-jerker! It’s a great idea to save these responses and to pull them out when the everyday hectic events of our lives obscure the real reasons for our love for each other – reasons that haven’t changed since the day we first fell in love.

  • Alan and Alyse

    I’ve asked this of Alan before, and the answers have changed slightly over time. We are now each others’ best friends and most solid support systems.

  • Thomas & Tiffany

    We chose to answer these questions face to face instead of writing them down. It was a really sweet moment to share, getting to hear the other say things that we don’t normally hear on a daily basis. We noticed our reasons for loving one another are true and sentimental, not superficial. This was definitely needed, yet so easy.

  • Aaron & Chelsey

    As with the previous respondents, we chose to answer these face to face, but we typed up our answers and saved them to look at later on. We enjoyed discussing our favorite memories and the values and goals that we share. We agreed that, in the future, we will refer to these answers to see where we started, remember why we fell for each other, and look at how much we have grown in our relationship.

  • Maelee Wells

    This was a really sweet exercise. We each answered the question then shared with the other one. It really helped remind us of the good, especially after a few tough days. It was a great reminder that we balance each other so well.

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