So, let's chat for a few minutes. I'd like to tell you about the last month of my life.
My amazing boyfriend and I have been together for six months. We dated off and on for five years before deciding to move past ~just friends!~ back in July. In that time, things progressed quickly. We moved in together in October and since then have been trying to find the best way to cohabit. He struggled a lot with the decision to move in with me because of his moral beliefs. He had told me previously that he would only ever live with someone he was married to, or was about to marry. He also wants to wait for marriage to have sex. All well and good, but at some point he decided he wanted to move in.
We've had some issues over chores. He doesn't make doing them a priority, but likes tidiness. It makes him crazy when I leave my clothes on the floor. He hates cooking and would much, much rather pick up takeout on the way home or eat a bag of chips, however would very much like to lose weight.
Before implementing RP values into my life, we would battle over these things. Never fights, just always picking and picking and picking. I will admit, I did the majority of the picking and he would just pick in response. One day, after I had been picking about something, he turned to me and looked so sad as he said something I found profound.
"I never criticize you. Why are you always criticizing me?"
It was a good question, one I had never really thought about before. The answer, of course, was simple. I was focused on the handful of things I was feeling resentful for, the things I felt he wasn't doing. Leaving the dishes for me to do, not cooking more. It was around this time that I found the RPW subreddit and everything clicked right before everything changed.
I realized that change needed to come from me. I was the one unhappy and arguing with him wasn't going to make me feel better. I care about having a clean home because it makes my mental illness and physical illness easier to manage. It matter so to me, so why not take control of my happiness and just clean the house? Who cares if he helps out on his own? It just doesn't matter.
I started meal prepping. I make him lunches. Healthy food but always something sugary because he loves sweets. I shut up and listen, rather than wait to tell him why he's wrong. I didn't complain about visiting his parents or going out with his friends and had a really good time when he told me that's what he wanted to do.
We did have a hiccup with a female friend of his that I had posted about here, but we worked through it like adults and he was assertive about resolving the issue. I appreciate that about him.
Just as importantly, my efforts were returned. He listens more to what I say. Our physical intimacy is amplified a thousand times. When faced with two big decisions recently he truly took into account my feelings, but had the final say. Both decisions he made were ones I felt good about and not having the pressure of making them was the biggest weight off my shoulders. I ask his opinion on things, big and small. When deciding what rental car company to go with for an upcoming trip, I asked him what we should rent. I could have searched online, but I wanted his opinion. He seemed to value that I asked.
I've started working out more, as much as can be done with a chronic illness. I wear makeup. I dress nicely. I bought a pair of heels to learn to walk in since he has a thing for girls in heels. As a result, I don't ever feel like I have to "fish" for compliments, he pays them all on his own and I knows he means them since I didn't have to ask. I stopped putting myself down. This was a huge one. I realized that putting myself down and calling myself ugly implies that he has poor taste. I certainly don't think that about anything else and he chose me. I don't need to worry about why or how, it's enough that he did.
Our issues were small, but I'm so glad I was able to learn the things that I have before our issues became large. I'm very much in love with him and I want to see this last a long, long time. It would appear that now he does too, since this past weekend he told his mother he was going to marry me! He joked with his father all weekend about giving him grandkids and though he looked at me with love before, I can feel it radiating from him now.
I'm going to keep working, keep trying, for us. For the way I feel right now. I don't ever want to get lazy or complacent. By being the best version of myself, I'm giving both myself and my boyfriend the best shot of us making it to the other side.
I am the happiest I've ever been.