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Why Do You Love Me? – Not Something My Husband Can Answer

Why do you love me?

I’ve been married a while, dating my husband even longer, I’ve been known to ask him Why do you love me?

You’d think that love and all its facets would be yesterday’s news to people once they are married. There isn’t anything you cannot talk about. It’s all out there, you love each other, the world knows! I assumed this when I was single, love got more relaxed, more known, more adult when you get married. You can just talk about it, it’s safe and understood.

Ha. Just because you live in the state of love (which is one thing marriage is, among other things), doesn’t mean you want to put words to it. I’ve found this with my ever so lovely but moose-like communicator husband of mine.

I really cannot think of anything (besides snakes) that makes him freeze in terror more than me asking him: Why do you love me? 

So yes, of course I do it all the time. Ask him this. Wouldn’t you? We have a laugh. And then he retaliates by asking me to organize and book airline tickets – which is my complete nightmare.

When I ask him Why do you love me? I don’t do it with myself in a figurative, fancy wedding dress, waiting for a vow, a promise so I can relax and love him back. Or with my self-esteem on a pedestal which needs his words to buttress it.

I know he loves me. He just can’t access the words. He can access the feelings.

It generally goes something like this.

Me: Why do you love me?

Husband: Hmmm?

Me: Why do you love me?

Husband: You know I need a week before I can answer this.  You know I’m not good on the spot.

Me: Fine

9 days later. Because I know ‘a week’ means more than a week.

Me: Why do you love me?

Husband: What?  Why are you asking me this?

Me: You said you needed a week.

Husband: A week for what?

Me: To answer it.

Husband: This is ridiculous.  Don’t you remember when I proposed?

Me: Yes.

Husband: Didn’t I say something then?

Me: Yes…

Husband: Well, that.  That is why I love you.

Me: You don’t remember what you said, do you?

Husband: Do you remember?

Me: Not really.  Something about charity?

Husband: Cherish!  I said I cherish you.

Me: Nice.  But why?

Husband: Why what?

Me: Why do you cherish me?

Husband: I just do, isn’t that enough?

Me: I cherish you too.

Husband: Why?

Me:  Because you’re a beautiful man who has love in his soul.

Husband: Oh, fuck off.  You’re just saying that to make me feel stupid.

I’m a writer. I deal in words. My husband, doesn’t. He’s an economist by nature, not a wordsmith.

When I left the love and immediacy of my marriage to solo hike the Appalachian Trail, something that any spouse would have panic attacks were their spouse to announce they were going to do it, without them, my husband gave me a present. A small, laminated card, at the top written “Why I love you” and on the front and spilling over to the back were 10 reasons why he loved me. 

It was laminated so it wouldn’t be ruined in the rain. He pointed that out specifically. You don’t have to talk about something to make it real.

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