Must Read on Pocket

This is one of the most-saved, read, and shared stories on Pocket.

Recommendations from Pocket Users

Rand Fishkin

Shared October 10, 2018

Wil Reynolds recommended this piece, and it's easy to see why. The stats and research paired with real letters from couples is powerful, and often humorous and engaging too.

Nicole Leffel

Shared December 11, 2016

💖

My sense is that these people, through sheer quantity of experience, have learned that communication, no matter how open, transparent and disciplined, will always break down at some point. Conflicts are ultimately unavoidable, and feelings will always be hurt.

And the only thing that can save you and your partner, that can cushion you both to the hard landing of human fallibility, is an unerring respect for one another, the fact that you hold each other in high esteem, believe in one another — often more than you each believe in yourselves — and trust that your partner is doing his/her best with what they’ve got.

Jason Huff

Shared December 10, 2016

If you're married or in a relationship that you're serious about, this is worth 30 minutes of your reading time.

Ben Mall

Shared December 15, 2016

“You can work through anything as long as you are not destroying yourself or each other. That means emotionally, physically, financially or spiritually. Make nothing off limits to discuss. Never shame or mock each other for the things you do that make you happy. Write down why you fell in love and read it every year on your anniversary (or more often). Write love letters to each other often. Make each other first. When kids arrive, it will be easy to fall into a frenzy of making them the only focus of your life…do not forget the love that produced them. You must keep that love alive and strong to feed them love. Spouse comes first. Each of you will continue to grow. Bring the other one with you. Be the one that welcomes that growth. Don’t think that the other one will hold the relationship together. Both of you should assume it’s up to you so that you are both working on it. Be passionate about cleaning house, preparing meals and taking care of your home. This is required of everyone daily, make it fun and happy and do it together. Do not complain about your partner to anyone. Love them for who they are. Make love even when you are not in the mood. Trust each other. Give each other the benefit of the doubt always. Be transparent. Have nothing to hide. Be proud of each other. Have a life outside of each other, but share it through conversation. Pamper and adore each other. Go to counselling now before you need it so that you are both open to working on the relationship together. Disagree with respect to each other’s feelings. Be open to change and accepting of differences. Print this and refer to it daily.”

Aslihan Ulutas

Shared July 11, 2017

But we noticed that the thing people with marriages going on 20, 30, or even 40 years talked about most was respect.

My sense is that these people, through sheer quantity of experience, have learned that communication, no matter how open, transparent and disciplined, will always break down at some point. Conflicts are ultimately unavoidable, and feelings will always be hurt.

And the only thing that can save you and your partner, that can cushion you both to the hard landing of human fallibility, is an unerring respect for one another, the fact that you hold each other in high esteem, believe in one another — often more than you each believe in yourselves — and trust that your partner is doing his/her best with what they’ve got.

Without that bedrock of respect underneath you, you will doubt each other’s intentions. You will judge their choices and encroach on their independence. You will feel the need to hide things from one another for fear of criticism. And this is when the cracks in the edifice begin to appear.

Santiago Suarez Ordonez

Shared December 13, 2016

Romantic love is a trap designed to get two people to overlook each other’s faults long enough to get some babymaking done. It generally only lasts for a few years at most. That dizzying high you get staring into your lover’s eyes as if they are the stars that make up the heavens — yeah, that mostly goes away. It does for everybody. So, once it’s gone, you need to know that you’ve buckled yourself down with a human being you genuinely respect and enjoy being with, otherwise things are going to get rocky

Dimitris John Raptis

Shared December 12, 2016

Τεράστιο άρθρο, το διαβάζω σε δόσεις, αλλά πέτυχα αυτό το κομμάτι και μου άρεσε -κι είναι κάτι που νομίζω ότι κάνουμε σωστά :)

"People who had been through divorces and/or had only been with their partners for 10-15 years almost always talked about communication being the most important part of making things work. Talk frequently. Talk openly. Talk about everything, even if it hurts.

But we noticed that the thing people with marriages going on 20, 30, or even 40 years talked about most was respect.

My sense is that these people, through sheer quantity of experience, have learned that communication, no matter how open, transparent and disciplined, will always break down at some point. Conflicts are ultimately unavoidable, and feelings will always be hurt.

And the only thing that can save you and your partner, that can cushion you both to the hard landing of human fallibility, is an unerring respect for one another, the fact that you hold each other in high esteem, believe in one another — often more than you each believe in yourselves — and trust that your partner is doing his/her best with what they’ve got.

Without that bedrock of respect underneath you, you will doubt each other’s intentions. You will judge their choices and encroach on their independence. You will feel the need to hide things from one another for fear of criticism. And this is when the cracks in the edifice begin to appear."

ahmed abdul fatah

Shared December 4, 2017

this guy's articles are really great

Eric Mueller

Shared December 24, 2016

Great article by a great writer. Crowdsourcing at it's finest!

Barns HM

Shared December 10, 2016

Sharing because I'm not alone among my friends in standing on the cusp of marriage.

Fred Rocha

Shared November 18, 2018

And the only thing that can save you and your partner, that can cushion you both to the hard landing of human fallibility, is an unerring respect for one another, the fact that you hold each other in high esteem, believe in one another — often more than you each believe in yourselves — and trust that your partner is doing his/her best with what they’ve got.

Liv Simmons

Shared December 9, 2016

Very useful. Very. Nice to see some new information out there other than the regular.

Renee Chen

Shared December 14, 2016

Haha, classic.

Romantic love is a trap designed to get two people to overlook each other’s faults long enough to get some babymaking done.

Gergely Fügedi

Shared December 30, 2016

Well, this is one of the best and most comprehensive articles on relationships I've ever read. It's also especially valuable and trustworthy for me because it's based on a huge sample, not just on a few individual experience. Whether being single or not, read it. In the latter case, make your spouse read it, too.

Kevin Correnti

Shared December 28, 2017

Really good

Peggy Weicher

Shared December 9, 2016

F a c t s

“Shitty, codependent relationships have an inherent stability because you’re both locked in an implicit bargain to tolerate the other person’s bad behavior because they’re tolerating yours, and neither of you wants to be alone. On the surface, it seems like “compromising in relationships because that’s what people do,” but the reality is that resentments build up, and both parties become the other person’s emotional hostage against having to face and deal with their own bullshit (it took me 14 years to realize this, by the way).”

– Karen

Erin Drummond

Shared January 11, 2017

You must also respect yourself. Just as your partner must also respect his/herself. Because without that self-respect, you will not feel worthy of the respect afforded by your partner. You will be unwilling to accept it and you will find ways to undermine it. You will constantly feel the need to compensate and prove yourself worthy of love, which will just backfire.

Erin Drummond

Shared January 11, 2017

Shitty, codependent relationships have an inherent stability because you’re both locked in an implicit bargain to tolerate the other person’s bad behavior because they’re tolerating yours, and neither of you wants to be alone. On the surface, it seems like “compromising in relationships because that’s what people do,” but the reality is that resentments build up, and both parties become the other person’s emotional hostage against having to face and deal with their own bullshit (it took me 14 years to realize this, by the way).

shaena fazal

Shared December 29, 2016

awesome, comprehensive piece

Maciej Socha

Shared January 2, 2017

“When you commit to someone, you don’t actually know who you’re committing to. You know who they are today, but you have no idea who this person is going to be in five years, ten years, and so on. You have to be prepared for the unexpected, and truly ask yourself if you admire this person regardless of the superficial (or not-so-superficial) details, because I promise almost all of them at some point are going to either change or go away.”


– Michael

Michael (thisiswilson) Wilson

Shared December 8, 2016

Full of great, well-detailed points.

ricardo gaspar

Shared January 15, 2017

A great piece of advice!

Tina Nguyen

Shared December 9, 2016

relationship advice for the new year, and beyond

Brett Szmajda

Shared December 11, 2016

Approaching 10 years of marriage and 13 years together, and I would echo every single one of these points.

Josel Duran

Shared December 12, 2016

What I can tell you is the #1 thing, most important above all else is respect. It’s not sexual attraction, looks, shared goals, religion or lack of, nor is it love. There are times when you won’t feel love for your partner. That is the truth. But you never want to lose respect for your partner. Once you lose respect you will never get it back.

Brent Zahradnik

Shared December 13, 2016

Great great piece even though I'm not married.

Ada OP

Shared June 4, 2017

"Your job as a committed partner is to simply ride the waves with the person you love, regardless of where they go. Because ultimately, none of these waves last. And you simply end up with each other."

Calvin Nguyen

Shared January 29, 2018

“You can work through anything as long as you are not destroying yourself or each other. That means emotionally, physically, financially or spiritually. Make nothing off limits to discuss. Never shame or mock each other for the things you do that make you happy. Write down why you fell in love and read it every year on your anniversary (or more often). Write love letters to each other often. Make each other first. When kids arrive, it will be easy to fall into a frenzy of making them the only focus of your life…do not forget the love that produced them. You must keep that love alive and strong to feed them love. Spouse comes first. Each of you will continue to grow. Bring the other one with you. Be the one that welcomes that growth. Don’t think that the other one will hold the relationship together. Both of you should assume it’s up to you so that you are both working on it. Be passionate about cleaning house, preparing meals and taking care of your home. This is required of everyone daily, make it fun and happy and do it together. Do not complain about your partner to anyone. Love them for who they are. Make love even when you are not in the mood. Trust each other. Give each other the benefit of the doubt always. Be transparent. Have nothing to hide. Be proud of each other. Have a life outside of each other, but share it through conversation. Pamper and adore each other. Go to counselling now before you need it so that you are both open to working on the relationship together. Disagree with respect to each other’s feelings. Be open to change and accepting of differences. Print this and refer to it daily.”

Kendra Chiu

Shared December 10, 2016

I sent out the call the week before my wedding: anyone who has been married for 10+ years and is still happy in their relationship, what lessons would you pass down to others if you could? What is working for you and your partner? And if you are divorced, what didn’t work previously?

The response was overwhelming. Almost 1,500 people replied, many of whom sent in responses measured in pages, not paragraphs. It took almost two weeks to comb through them all, but I did. And what I found stunned me…

They were incredibly repetitive.

That’s not an insult or anything. Actually, it’s kind of the opposite. Not to mention, a relief. These were all smart and well-spoken people from all walks of life, from all around the world, all with their own histories, tragedies, mistakes and triumphs…

And yet they were all saying pretty much the same dozen things.

Dominik

Shared December 11, 2016

“Don’t try to change them. This is the person you chose. They were good enough to marry so don’t expect them to change now.”

Scott Kodai

Shared December 11, 2016

Lots of wisdom here.

Michael Lim June Kiat

Shared December 23, 2016

This. This is what every couple need to know (and should consider reading together). Onward, to a new year of love!

Kayla Brown

Shared January 21, 2017

True love — that is, deep, abiding love that is impervious to emotional whims or fancy — is a choice. It’s a constant commitment to a person regardless of the present circumstances. It’s a commitment to a person who you understand isn’t going to always make you happy — nor should they! — and a person who will need to rely on you at times, just as you will rely on them.

Patrick Bross

Shared December 16, 2016

Important reminder

“There is no 50/50 in housecleaning, child rearing, vacation planning, dishwasher emptying, gift buying, dinner making, money making, etc. The sooner everyone accepts that, the happier everyone is. We all have things we like to do and hate to do; we all have things we are good at and not so good at. TALK to your partner about those things when it comes to dividing and conquering all the crap that has to get done in life.”

– Liz

AMYunus Yunus

Shared January 21, 2017

Worth to read

Olu Ola

Shared October 10, 2018

jook

Natsuka Sakanami

Shared October 18, 2018

It’s really good advice. And I’m not even in a relationship!

“You can work through anything as long as you are not destroying yourself or each other. That means emotionally, physically, financially or spiritually. Make nothing off limits to discuss. Never shame or mock each other for the things you do that make you happy. Write down why you fell in love and read it every year on your anniversary (or more often). Write love letters to each other often. Make each other first. When kids arrive, it will be easy to fall into a frenzy of making them the only focus of your life…do not forget the love that produced them. You must keep that love alive and strong to feed them love. Spouse comes first. Each of you will continue to grow. Bring the other one with you. Be the one that welcomes that growth. Don’t think that the other one will hold the relationship together. Both of you should assume it’s up to you so that you are both working on it. Be passionate about cleaning house, preparing meals and taking care of your home. This is required of everyone daily, make it fun and happy and do it together. Do not complain about your partner to anyone. Love them for who they are. Make love even when you are not in the mood. Trust each other. Give each other the benefit of the doubt always. Be transparent. Have nothing to hide. Be proud of each other. Have a life outside of each other, but share it through conversation. Pamper and adore each other. Go to counselling now before you need it so that you are both open to working on the relationship together. Disagree with respect to each other’s feelings. Be open to change and accepting of differences. Print this and refer to it daily.”

Emily Blake

Shared December 31, 2018

Really good

Alex Ernst

Shared December 11, 2016

One reader commented that at her wedding, an elderly family member told her, “One day many years from now, you will wake up and your spouse will be a different person, make sure you fall in love with that person too.”

Alex Ernst

Shared December 11, 2016

The man said something like, “relationships exist as waves, people need to learn how to ride them.” Upon asking him to explain, he said that, like the ocean, there are constant waves of emotion going on within a relationship, ups and downs — some waves last for hours, some last for months or even years. The key is understanding that few of those waves have anything to do with the quality of the relationship — people lose jobs, family members die, couples relocate, switch careers, make a lot of money, lose a lot of money. Your job as a committed partner is to simply ride the waves with the person you love, regardless of where they go. Because ultimately, none of these waves last. And you simply end up with each other.

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

Robin Williams used to joke, “God gave man a brain and a penis and only enough blood to operate one at a time.”

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

As a reader named Olov put it, “Respect yourself and your wife. Never talk badly to or about her. If you don’t respect your wife, you don’t respect yourself. You chose her – live up to that choice.”

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

Every relationship requires each person to consciously choose to give something up at times.

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

A healthy and happy relationship requires two healthy and happy individuals. Keyword here: “individuals.” That means two people with their own identities, their own interests and perspectives, and things they do by themselves, on their own time.

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

Give Each Other Space


“Be sure you have a life of your own, otherwise it is harder to have a life together. What do I mean? Have your own interests, your own friends, your own support network, and your own hobbies. Overlap where you can, but not being identical should give you something to talk about and expose one another to. It helps to expand your horizons as a couple, but isn’t so boring as both living the exact same life.”

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

Some people are afraid to give their partner freedom and independence. This comes from a lack of trust and/or insecurity that if we give our partner too much space, they will discover they don’t want to be with us anymore.

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 13, 2016

He has gone on and called these “the four horsemen” of the relationship apocalypse in his books. They are:

Criticizing your partner’s character (“You’re so stupid” vs “That thing you did was stupid.”)
Defensiveness (or basically, blame shifting, “I wouldn’t have done that if you weren’t late all the time.”)
Contempt (putting down your partner and making them feel inferior.)
Stonewalling (withdrawing from an argument and ignoring your partner.)

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 16, 2016

But the best way to raise healthy and happy kids is to maintain a healthy and happy marriage. Good kids don’t make a good marriage. A good marriage makes good kids. So keep your marriage the top priority.”

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 16, 2016

That was the first time I discovered a truth about relationships: sex is the State of the Union. If the relationship is good, the sex will be good. You both will be wanting it and enjoying it.

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 16, 2016

“There is no 50/50 in housecleaning, child rearing, vacation planning, dishwasher emptying, gift buying, dinner making, money making, etc. The sooner everyone accepts that, the happier everyone is. We all have things we like to do and hate to do; we all have things we are good at and not so good at. TALK to your partner about those things when it comes to dividing and conquering all the crap that has to get done in life.”

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 16, 2016

I think people give up too soon. You need to be the kind of person that you want your spouse to be. When you do that it makes a world of difference.”

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 16, 2016

Exercises like this always amaze me because when you ask thousands of people for advice on something, you expect to receive thousands of different answers. But in both cases now, the vast majority of the advice has largely been the same. It shows you how similar we really are. And how no matter how bad things may get, we are never as alone as we think.

Evandro Junqueira Figueiredo

Shared December 16, 2016

“You can work through anything as long as you are not destroying yourself or each other. That means emotionally, physically, financially or spiritually. Make nothing off limits to discuss. Never shame or mock each other for the things you do that make you happy. Write down why you fell in love and read it every year on your anniversary (or more often). Write love letters to each other often. Make each other first. When kids arrive, it will be easy to fall into a frenzy of making them the only focus of your life…do not forget the love that produced them. You must keep that love alive and strong to feed them love. Spouse comes first. Each of you will continue to grow. Bring the other one with you. Be the one that welcomes that growth. Don’t think that the other one will hold the relationship together. Both of you should assume it’s up to you so that you are both working on it. Be passionate about cleaning house, preparing meals and taking care of your home. This is required of everyone daily, make it fun and happy and do it together. Do not complain about your partner to anyone. Love them for who they are. Make love even when you are not in the mood. Trust each other. Give each other the benefit of the doubt always. Be transparent. Have nothing to hide. Be proud of each other. Have a life outside of each other, but share it through conversation. Pamper and adore each other. Go to counselling now before you need it so that you are both open to working on the relationship together. Disagree with respect to each other’s feelings. Be open to change and accepting of differences. Print this and refer to it daily.”

Terry Li

Shared January 6, 2017

Trust is like a china plate. If you drop it and it breaks, you can put it back together with a lot of work and care. If you drop it and break it a second time, it will split into twice as many pieces and it will require far more time and care to put back together again. But drop and break it enough times, and it will shatter into so many pieces that you will never be able to put it back together again, no matter what you do.

lerilerileri wify

Shared February 2, 2017

p

Maria Elisa Franke

Shared July 22, 2018

That dizzying high you get staring into your lover’s eyes as if they are the stars that make up the heavens — yeah, that mostly goes away. It does for everybody. So, once it’s gone, you need to know that you’ve buckled yourself down with a human being you genuinely respect and enjoy being with, otherwise things are going to get rocky.

Alex Ernst

Shared January 15, 2019

“Because a love that’s alive is also constantly evolving. It expands and contracts and mellows and deepens. It’s not going to be the way it used to be, or the way it will be, and it shouldn’t be.”

Alex Ernst

Shared January 23, 2019

Remember that being “right” is not as important as both people feeling respected and heard. You may be right, but if you are right in such a way that makes your partner feel unloved, then there’s no real winner.

Remember that being “right” is not as important as both people feeling respected and heard. You may be right, but if you are right in such a way that makes your partner feel unloved, then there’s no real winner.

Alex Ernst

Shared January 25, 2019

The key is understanding that few of those waves have anything to do with the quality of the relationship — people lose jobs, family members die, couples relocate, switch careers, make a lot of money, lose a lot of money. Your job as a committed partner is to simply ride the waves with the person you love, regardless of where they go. Because ultimately, none of these waves last. And you simply end up with each other.

The key is understanding that few of those waves have anything to do with the quality of the relationship — people lose jobs, family members die, couples relocate, switch careers, make a lot of money, lose a lot of money. Your job as a committed partner is to simply ride the waves with the person you love, regardless of where they go. Because ultimately, none of these waves last. And you simply end up with each other.

Ivan Andrian

Shared January 13, 2017

As Robin Williams used to joke, “God gave man a brain and a penis and only enough blood to operate one at a time.”

Amith Raravi

Shared October 13, 2017

This is definitely worth your time, people in relationship!!!

Nana Darmadji

Shared February 10, 2018

💗

Chuck Alexander

Shared April 18, 2018

“You are absolutely not going to be absolutely gaga over each other every single day for the rest of your lives, and all this ‘happily ever after’ bullshit is just setting people up for failure. They go into relationship with these unrealistic expectations. Then, the instant they realize they aren’t ‘gaga’ anymore, they think the relationship is broken and over, and they need to get out. No! There will be days, or weeks, or maybe even longer, when you aren’t all mushy-gushy in-love. You’re even going to wake up some morning and think, “Ugh, you’re still here….” That’s normal! And more importantly, sticking it out is totally worth it, because that, too, will change. In a day, or a week, or maybe even longer, you’ll look at that person and a giant wave of love will inundate you, and you’ll love them so much you think your heart can’t possibly hold it all and is going to burst. Because a love that’s alive is also constantly evolving. It expands and contracts and mellows and deepens. It’s not going to be the way it used to be, or the way it will be, and it shouldn’t be. I think if more couples understood that, they’d be less inclined to panic and rush to break up or divorce.”

Chuck Alexander

Shared April 18, 2018

Romantic love is a trap designed to get two people to overlook each other’s faults long enough to get some babymaking done. It generally only lasts for a few years at most. That dizzying high you get staring into your lover’s eyes as if they are the stars that make up the heavens — yeah, that mostly goes away. It does for everybody. So, once it’s gone, you need to know that you’ve buckled yourself down with a human being you genuinely respect and enjoy being with, otherwise things are going to get rocky.

Chuck Alexander

Shared April 18, 2018

“Everyone says that compromise is key, but that’s not how my husband and I see it. It’s more about seeking understanding. Compromise is bullshit, because it leaves both sides unsatisfied, losing little pieces of themselves in an effort to get along. On the other hand, refusing to compromise is just as much of a disaster, because you turn your partner into a competitor (“I win, you lose”). These are the wrong goals, because they’re outcome-based rather than process-based. When your goal is to find out where your partner is coming from – to truly understand on a deep level – you can’t help but be altered by the process. Conflict becomes much easier to navigate because you see more of the context.”

Chuck Alexander

Shared April 18, 2018

“Children are worshipped in our culture these days. Parents are expected to sacrifice everything for them. But the best way to raise healthy and happy kids is to maintain a healthy and happy marriage. Good kids don’t make a good marriage. A good marriage makes good kids. So keep your marriage the top priority.”

Chuck Alexander

Shared April 18, 2018

That was the first time I discovered a truth about relationships: sex is the State of the Union. If the relationship is good, the sex will be good. You both will be wanting it and enjoying it. When the relationship is bad — when there are unresolved problems and unaddressed negative emotions — then the sex will often be the first thing to go out the window.

L Y

Shared September 6, 2018

Read this and refresh your thoughts every noe and then

sonal tewari

Shared January 10, 2017

n the site because I

Nelvin Dicen

Shared December 12, 2016

True love — that is, deep, abiding love that is impervious to emotional whims or fancy — is a choice. It’s a constant commitment to a person regardless of the present circumstances.

Tom Swerts

Shared March 29, 2017

Normally how-to's about relationships aren't my thing. But I was trapped into this article because of the funny meme that caught my eye. Now, 13 chapters later I'm at the end and I'm glad I read the article. I definitely am going to read it again, sometime later.

P

Shared December 11, 2016

Always learning.

Don

Shared December 16, 2016

the other hand w the jt my free

Milan Krystek

Shared January 10, 2017

Remember that being “right” is not as important as both people feeling respected and heard. You may be right, but if you are right in such a way that makes your partner feel unloved, then there’s no real winner.

Katie Leon Guerrero

Shared January 23, 2019

Respect that they have an equal say in the relationship, that you are a team, and if one person on the team is not happy, then the team is not succeeding.

Katie Leon Guerrero

Shared January 23, 2019

Learn to discern your partner’s own shady behavior from your own insecurities (and vice-versa). This is hard and will likely require confrontation to get to the bottom of. But in most relationship fights, one person thinks something is completely “normal” and the other thinks it’s really grade-A “fucked up.” It’s often extremely hard to distinguish who is being irrational and insecure and who is being reasonable and merely standing up for themselves. Be patient in rooting out what’s what, and when it’s your big, gnarly insecurity (and sometimes it will be, trust me), be honest about it. Own up to it. And strive to be better.