It is not your spouse’s job to meet these “needs” any more than it’s your spouse’s job to take care of your physical body. Getting the validation you seek is your responsibility, and true validation is not something you seek from another; it derives from a strength of character within that allows you to serve another … without needing them to serve you in return.
And fully realizing such truth frees you and your spouse to live up to your vows. After all, you said “I do” to a number of commitments that require a lot of inner strength and self-validation. “I do promise to love and cherish you … for better and worse, through rich times and poor, through sickness and health … until death do us part.”
You said “I do,” not … “We do.” You said “I do,” not … “as long as you do, I do.” You said “I do,” for life. And that “I do” is what gets you through times when you don’t feel like it, when your spouse isn’t sharing the same spirit, when you’re tempted to run because your needs don’t feel met. The “I do” spirit is exactly what will lead you to grow as a spouse, and grow closer to your spouse, without waiting for him/her to make a reciprocal move. And that’s why this book is called The Self-Centered Marriage. The first word you said in marriage was “I,” and that is the word that will lead you to the type of passionate, lasting connection we all crave.
Runkel, Hal Edward. The Self-Centered Marriage (p. 44). Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale. Kindle Edition.
Runkel, Hal Edward. The Self-Centered Marriage (pp. 43-44). Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale. Kindle Edition.