Does Unconditional Love Apply to Destructive Behavior?

When you get married you are supposed to love your spouse until death do you part. You have committed for better or for worse. You have said I will have unconditional love for you. But what happens when your spouse exhibits destructive behavior? Does unconditional love still apply?

I recently read an article on YourTango that shared a story of a counseling session in which the woman didn’t believe the man was loving her without conditions. He responded he was trying to support her being healthy for them both. She felt that was a condition, and the disagreement continued until the counselor stepped in with a few questions.

The questions were intended to discover if they had truly shown unconditional love or were simply trying to have control over the other person. If it wasn’t just for control, were the behaviors truly destructive and in need of this type of tough, unconditional love?

Below are 8 behaviors that may require some tough, unconditional love. Do you agree that unconditional love does not apply in these circumstances, or does it?

  • Do these 8 behaviors void unconditional love? 1 of 9
    Fighting against yourself

    Click through to see 8 destructive behaviors that may make unconditional love null and void.

  • Laziness… 2 of 9
    Bored, overweight man sits on the sofa

    Is he unemployed, but lays on the couch all day and plays video games all night? He says the job market is tough, but you see very little effort.

  • Overspending… 3 of 9

    If your mate has an impulse spending problem or wants to live off more than you think is okay, your standard of living could be impacted in a very bad way. Does this void unconditional love?

  • Eating disorders… 4 of 9

    The disorder could be in the form of overeating, eating unhealthy, or not eating enough to maintain a healthy weight. Of course you won't kick them to the curb, but your unconditional love may not just be acceptance.

  • Alcohol or drug abuse… 5 of 9
    Drinking again

    An intervention as a form of unconditional love may be the solution here. How do you handle this type of destructive behavior?

  • Physical abuse… 6 of 9
    Used and abused; domestic violence concept

    When you are at risk of physical harm, the unconditional love may have to be thrown out the window. Acceptance is not the answer. What do you suggest?

  • Self-abuse… 7 of 9

    Not harming you, but harming themselves is a major destructive behavior. In some cases it can be as serious as physical abuse. Is the unconditional love void, or shown in a tough manner?

  • Disrespect of others… 8 of 9
    Laughing and pointing woman

    What do you do when your spouse disrespects others? That could be your children, your parents or his/hers, your friends, or people in general. Feeling uneasy every time you are around other people fearing what he/she may say or do is not ideal. How do you unconditionally love that behavior?

  • Self-criticism… 9 of 9
    Thoughtful man in the living room

    This isn't necessarily physical, but mental and emotional. You see it, but maybe they don't. How can you unconditionally love them through it?

Photo credits: iStock Photo

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More on relationships from Jackie:

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