Dating is fun, but after a while, most folks want to know if their date is going to commit to them for a relationship. The commitment question does not however end when they do enter into some kind of relationship, even when they are boyfriend/girlfriend. I can't even begin to tell you the many times people in long-standing relationships worry about their mate not committing. Without going into all the details of the different kinds of relationships that are out there (sex buddies, friends with benefits, monogamous/exclusive boyfriend-girlfriend, live-in lovers, common-law marriage, legal marriage), I am going to describe the three types of commitments that can occur in a relationship, and what they look like.
This is where partners are friends with each other. They get on well, understand each other, enjoy each other's company, and socialize together. They usually share a lot of things in common, and have common interests. They do a lot of things together and are a good fit. They are also very forgiving of each other faults, and are willing to overlook slights. They tend to stick with each other through the ups and downs of life, and are there for each other through the good times and bad times.
Soul mates are like friends but they are mirrors of each other. They see themselves in each other. "I see you in me and me in you." Soul mates are very comfortable with each other, and they complement each other. What one lacks the other makes up for, and together they function as a whole. Apart they are strong, but together they are stronger. They complete each other.
Marriage is a legal contract, where two people commit to take care of each other for the rest of their lives, "for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, 'til death do us part." Because it's a legal contract, it is enforceable by law, and the two parties cannot get out of that commitment unless by court action - a divorce. Ideally, you only want to enter into a legal contract, such as marriage, with someone who is at least a lifetime friend or your soul mate. Entering into a marriage contract with anyone less, is signing up for spiritual/emotional disaster.
As a spiritual counselor I teach people how to identify the qualities within their relationship that are for or against commitment. In many instances, couples do love each other, but their love do not rise to the level to cause any of three commitment levels - lifetime friendship, soul mate or marriage. In my love coaching program, I explore all three levels of commitment that can occur in a relationship, and help you lay the framework for being in a loving committed relationship. For more information about my love coaching program, and to contact me, please visit my website.