Since I find myself in the position of giving relationship advice to one who is near & dear to me lately, I thought I'd record it here...for posterity, I guess.
---> TELL the other person what it is you want & need. Don't expect them to read your mind. They can't do it. I promise.
---> Following from the last piece of advice, VALUE what the other person does "even though" you needed to tell them what you wanted/needed. It is the highest honor to have someone love you enough to do what you asked them to do. It means they have *listened* and they care.
---> Every relationship is a little like a cross-cultural relationship, even if you're both from the same culture & you speak the same language. You grew up in different families where words & actions have their own unique sets of meaning. Every person has their own unique sets of experiences & expressions of personality. This means you have learn the other person's "language."
---> Speaking of languages, I am a fan of the Love Languages concept. I believe that what speaks love to one person may not speak love to another, or, at least, it may not speak as loudly or as deeply. Different people have different needs in order to feel loved, cared for & respected. Briefly, the 5 primary love languages cited by Gary Chapman in his book are: words of affirmation, acts of service, touch, quality time, and gifts. Whatever you tend to do for other people is probably your primary language. It is one of the highest expressions of love to learn the language your partner speaks, especially if it isn't your primary language.
---> Allow yourself to be loved, even if it embarrasses you. It's really ok to let people love you and for them to show it in big, romantic, sentimental, and extravagant ways.
---> When it the presence of someone who loves you and whom you trust, there's no need to be embarrassed about expressing how you feel. They LOVE you, and they just want to know that you love them back.
Any questions? ;)