The goal of marriage is unconditional love.
That means ‘I love her, without any ‘because’s’ (i.e. “because she’s pretty”, “because she’s cool”, “because she does X,Y, or Z for me”. Or even “because she loves me”.)
Now she may well be pretty, cool, an X,Y,Z doer, and she may love you; which is great. (Or maybe she’s not.)
But it shouldn’t affect your love for her one iota. Because those are all conditions, and marriage is about unconditional love.
Unconditional love (or UL, as in electric) is a sublime spiritual state. Someone who’s reached it lives in perpetual bliss.
But how can we possibly get there?
Through practicing the acts and attitudes of unconditional love.
Giving – without any calculations of what you are, or are not, getting in return.
Acceptance – allowing her to be who she is without trying to control or change her.
Priority – showing her through words and, far more importantly, actions, that she’s the most important person (or anything else) in your life, bar none.
Loyalty – never siding with anyone else against her, even in private.
Being a sanctuary – making yourself entirely safe for her, someone she knows will never, ever criticize her (even obliquely, even when you think it would be ‘good’ for her).
Fidelity – not only not committing adultery, but not flirting with, or even gazing at any members of the opposite sex (live or in images).
Positivity – leave your daily (or lifetime’s) resentments, anxieties, fears, and insecurities outside the door and project an aura of calm and cheerful equanimity. (There are other healthy places to process your gremlins – don’t dump them on her.)
Commitment – being present in the relationship for the long run. Not even considering divorce, except in the genuinely most extreme of circumstances, no matter how uncomfortable or unpleasant seeing things through would be.
The guidelines are all simple, but not at all easy.
But a man who practices unconditional love is virtually assured a peaceful, stable, and spiritually shining home.
One who doesn’t is virtually assured the opposite. (Nor will the ‘next time’ be any different.)
It’s a choice.