Upon checking into a five-star hotel, guests are quick to notice the royal treatment they receive. Attentive service that provides a high level of comfort makes us feel special and important. That is why it is expensive. Similarly, we should treat our girlfriends and wives like queens. Maintaining the generous loving attention given to them during courtship shows a woman throughout the relationship that she is important. Simultaneously, husbands and boyfriends ought to be treated like kings.

When love relationships are successful, a key to that success is due to service. What we give and the attitude with which we give it either contributes to a loving environment between romantic partners or fails to do so. Yet each one of us, in part, believes that we deserve the best. Some call this entitlement, but it can also be called honoring the inner queen or king. Giving your spouse the royal treatment is not spoiling him or her as long as the giving is mutual. Service is about giving. The more attentive we are to our partner, the more we are likely to fully understand what will make our queen or king happy. Observing and studying our partner may help us better understand him or her.

Some become confused about service and confuse it with subservience — but being of service does not indicate higher or lower, better or worse. On the contrary, being of service raises up the one serving. Giving not only communicates that the other is important, it also expresses, “I am here to make your life better.”

Treating your wife like a queen or your husband like a king embodies the values of honor, respect, reverence, loyalty, and adoration. At first glance such treatment may appear to be too high of a standard, but wouldn’t you want to be treated this way? Living these values means that the best of us is given, which has the greatest potential to evoke the best in our partner and others in our lives. A couple’s deepest potential is generated when both partners simultaneously respect, honor, and adore each other. The best in one lover triggers the best in the other; lifting the loving bond even higher. A kingdom of love and peace, a space of security and harmony is created in a frantic, sometimes unsafe world.

Most spouses and partners don’t treat each other like kings or queens. The factors preventing us from building the harmonious and loving royal kingdom is that each one of us is unable to aim that high. Why? Because reality in relationships is that the more intimately you know your partner, the more clearly you see his or her limitations and flaws. The longer you have been together with your partner, the more you have been hurt or frustrated by his or her flaws. So, as long as we base our loving efforts on the degree to which the partner “deserves” our love, a pattern is established in which partners are treated like paupers or prisoners instead of royalty.

In its purest form, love is unconditional. When conditions are placed on love, such as, “I will love you when you when I think you are good enough,” the relationship will begin to devolve to a low state. Giving love at a high level lifts both partners up so that behaving in a regal way becomes increasingly easier. Offering attention at a high level requires great effort, but it may take less effort and pain than living in a poor quality relationship and trying to repair after it has fallen apart.

Kings and queens do not just receive lavish attention. Mutual loving actions are one way to maintain the status of royalty, but behaving in a strong and responsible manner is another. Royalty must manage well their sovereign domain in order to succeed; history is full of the consequences of haughty or insensitive leadership. Scared people do not adore their king or queen. The ability to verbalize the need for change, to redirect resources to a place of insufficiency, and to act as a loving leader all support receiving the adoration due a king or queen.

Reciprocal and simultaneous royal treatment is the “secret” to a lasting, happy relationship. So go ahead, honor and revere your queen. Don’t hesitate to respect and adore your king. Give each other the five-star service that lifts your love the highest level. Andrew Aaron, LICSW