We acquire our values from different sources. In the beginning our values are taught to us by our parents – Always speak the truth, do unto others, do this and don’t do that and things like that. As we mature, we acquire more values from our education. We also read about values of great people and try to live by some of them. Our religion gives us many values. How to live, what is right, what is wrong and what is allowed, what is not allowed are some values that we get from the religion. Today if you observe the difference between pro and anti-abortion lobbies, you will find a values conflict. In your relationship, have you found out values of your partner? Have you spelled out your values?
For some of us, values are very dear. They are principles or standards of behavior; one’s judgement of what is important in life. It is found that some people even give away their life to safe guard their values. No matter how attracted you are to your partner, value contradiction can play havoc with your relationship. For instance, some of us sympathize with the poor and try to help them, while others opine that poor need not be helped, as it is their karma that is giving them this pain. Let them suffer. This singular value difference can kill your relationship, especially if you are both not ready to compromise on them.
Talking to your partner about your values at the beginning of the relationship helps clarify things. Spell out your values very clearly and be honest that you will not compromise on any of them. Let your partner do the same. Compare the values and discuss the differences, try to find a common ground. Decide at that point about the relationship.
You should both be aware that the differences in values can kill the relationship in future and take conscious steps to safe guard against this.