As human beings we all need to feel important—to feel that we are somebody and that what we do matters. This is especially true in intimate relationships. It meets our needs at a basic level to know that our partner sees us and what we do as important. During a communication exercise in a Marriage Preparation Class that we teach, where couples practice talking through issue, one groom-to-be brought up the issue of feeling that the bride-to-be was not interested in something that he had spent a good deal of time making. He thought she felt it was silly and not worth her time. He wanted her to take time to look at and possibly appreciate things that he had put time and effort into doing.
Robert Gordon Menzies said, “More good things in life are lost by indifference than ever were lost by active hostility.” We may not be putting our partner down, but if we are indifferent to their successes and discount what is important to them, we are giving them the message that they do not matter to us.
Pay attention to the ways that you may be giving your partner the message that he or she is not important to you. Remember that something that is of great importance to your partner should be important to you, simply because it is important to your partner.
Give your partner the gift of your excitement for their accomplishments and successes, whatever they may be. Don't let your relationship dwindle because of indifference.