I blogged about The Princess Bride a few weeks ago in my post, 5 Things You Should Always Say to Your Spouse. After that post, I realized that The Princess Bride has more to say about love and relationships. Here are a few things that we can learn about love from Westley and Buttercup.
Performing acts of service for your spouse is a great way to say “I love you.” Westley lived out this principle and earned Buttercup’s abiding love. Incidentally, the book (by William Goldman) tells us exactly what Westley was saying to Buttercup through his act of love:
“I've been saying it so long to you, you just wouldn't listen. Every time you said 'Farm Boy do this' you thought I was answering 'As you wish' but that's only because you were hearing wrong. 'I love you' was what it was, but you never heard.” (source)
2. Recognize the gift of love.
When you have met the one your heart loves, recognize the rare and special gift you have been given and nurture it. And remember, our feelings can be directed by our thoughts and actions. So if you find that “true love” fading and are tempted to start looking for greener grass, remember that the greenest grass is the grass that gets the most nourishment – so start nourishing your own lawn!
3. Be encouraging and lift up your partner.
Focus on the positive and use words to speak life. There will be times when your loved one is discouraged — lift them up with your words. On a related note, another benefit of having a partner is that if you fall into lightning sand, your loved one can lift you up.
4. Seek to understand.
Conflict often arises from miscommunication. Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification. This is particularly if your loved one is about to surrender to her “pig fiancé” while simultaneously turning you over to the six-fingered man!
5. Stay committed to your partner.
Challenges will come to any relationship, but if you are wholly committed to each other, than nothing–whether internal or external forces–can pull you apart.
6. Appreciate your partner’s beauty, inside and out.
Westley and Buttercup both illustrate the importance of appreciating the unique physical attributes of your loved one. Compliment your loved one, not only directly, but also praise your partner to others (or, in Buttercup’s case, to someone in costume who, as it turns out, happens to be your loved one).
7. Married men: your wife is the most valuable thing in your life.
Your wife is a treasure, worth so much more than fine jewels, so treat her accordingly.