Why I Won’t Claim That My Boyfriend is the “Best Boyfriend in the World”

This piece of writing started out as a Facebook post that I began to create in my mind earlier this week. However, as my thoughts deepened on the subject, I realized that I needed to write a blog post to share more than I had originally intended.

What initially was going to be a few sentences about how much I appreciate my boyfriend turned into something else. And, no, it’s not because we got into another fight and I no longer wanted to tell the world how great he is.;)

My boyfriend is not the best boyfriend in the world

I have been thinking a lot about the gift I have in my boyfriend Jonathan. I can’t even begin to express my appreciation for this man.

When he comes to mind, I smile.

God knew what he was doing when he put us into each other’s lives. I count Jonathan as a gift and know that good and perfect gifts are from God (James 1:17).

Over the past couple of days I have been thinking about Wednesday night – how, we were having a nice evening until it happened. The “it” I’m referring to is a meltdown. It’s a common occurrence in the life of Emily Lofgren. Some may often see it (I’m sorry to my family and to Jonathan), others may never believe it, but complete meltdowns are a source of regular struggle for me.

After dinner, Bible study, and a quick stop to visit my family, we were on our way back to my place when Jonathan said the wrong thing. It shouldn’t have been the wrong thing, but because I was tired and already starting to fall apart piece by piece, it pushed me over the edge.

One innocent comment that wasn’t even about me left me feeling insecure about my role in his life. Without explaining unnecessary details of the scenario, essentially, I took something out of context and let my brewing insecurities overtake my thoughts.

When we got back to my apartment, I angrily trudged up the stairs and threw my new box of supplements on the kitchen floor before retreating to my room in tears. I was frustrated and tired of being sick. It felt like nothing in my life was going right.

Instead of telling me I was being irrational and that I needed to calm down, Jonathan quickly prepared my overnight oats for the next morning’s breakfast so that I would have one less thing to worry about. He then wrapped his arms around me and provided comfort as I poured out my frustrations, stuttering and all.

That night, Jonathan didn’t brush me off or return anger with anger. Throughout this journey of illness, he has turned toward instead of away from me and has sought to understand and love me through the hard times.

This week, I was having a severe Herxheimer reaction, which is a die-off reaction when Lyme bacteria dies and the body tries to detox. Symptoms can get worse during that time. My symptoms were flaring strongly on Wednesday when the meltdown happened.

Over the past several months, even with my severe symptoms and Herxheimer reactions, Jonathan has been incredibly gracious to me. Sure, he’s had times when he wanted to retreat, but I have to give him credit for sticking it out. We have not walked an easy road.

Not the Best Boyfriend in the World

I am beyond thankful to have Jonathan in my life and I want others to know how much I love him.

Something I will not claim, though, is that he is is the best boyfriend in the world.

I don’t say this because I don’t think Jonathan is good enough or that I wish he were better. Just like you and me, he has his downfalls, but he’s my guy and I like him a lot.

I say this because I believe we enter dangerous territory in our online lives when we share one-sided versions of ourselves and the people we love. We make claims that they are the “best” spouse or significant other during times when we feel good about things, perhaps after a romantic date or a great vacation. The feelings at the time are genuine, but what about the other 99% of the time?

If I make a claim that my significant other is the “best,” then I’m putting up a measuring stick for others to use for judging their significant other.

Even worse, it’s potentially another reminder to those who are single that they are missing out on something (even though they’re not – please keep reading, I’ll explain more).

Here’s the truth about relationships, dating, and marriage: there’s no “best boyfriend, spouse, or significant other.” We each enter into a relationship as flawed people, trying to make it work. By God’s grace, we’re gradually changing, growing, and becoming people who complement each other.

Because each person is unique, the way they connect with others is unique. This means that relationships are complex and connection matters. Jonathan and I connect well (but that doesn’t always mean we agree). In addition to having a shared faith and way we saw life, we mutually felt drawn together, which is why we entered into a relationship in the first place.

Jonathan and I each experienced many years of singleness because we were waiting for the right person to date.

Is he what I consider to be the the best boyfriend for me? Absolutely – but I don’t think he’s the “best boyfriend in the world” because there is no “best boyfriend in the world” no matter how we frame it.

We should stop trying to find the “best boyfriend in the world” and stop forcing our significant others into the “best” significant other category because it doesn’t exist. What exists are two people who are deeply flawed, but who deeply love because God, in his loving kindness, has given them grace.

Let’s just be genuine, love others well, offer grace, and most importantly trust God to guide us. That’s the recipe for a content life that’s not dependent on our relationship status.

Should we appreciate our significant others? Yes – but I think it’s wise to be mindful of the ways we portray that relationship online.

My boyfriend is not the “best boyfriend in the world,” and that’s okay.

26 thoughts on “Why I Won’t Claim That My Boyfriend is the “Best Boyfriend in the World”

  1. THIS! It’s one of the reasons why I don’t really share about my fiance on social media. If I am feeling like I want to compliment him for the great thing he’s doing, I’ll shoot him a text, an email, give me a call, or tell him in person. I think it’s wonderful to celebrate your significant other on social media, but I think we should be mindful that we aren’t doing it to the point where it comes off as either humble-bragging (the my significant other is so awesome and always does sweet things… he’s sweeter than yours) or giving off this sense of perfection in a relationship that isn’t there (i.e relationship goals, people idolizing other people’s relationships). I try to be really mindful when I share things about my fiance, where as well as the purpose for posting it.

  2. Yeah “best in the world” really doesn’t make sense as a way to describe spouses. There can be no qualified ‘best’, because humans are all different and pair up with each other differently! I always tell my husband/call my husband my “favorite husband”–sure, I’ve only had one husband, but I can see a lot of other husbands out there and he’s my favorite. Doesn’t mean he’s better than anyone else, just that he’s mine.

  3. Awesome post! I always like to tell my hubby “you’re the best!!”, but I generally don’t say that to others about him. :-) I do like bragging on him, but I get your point! The important thing is that we build up our men without putting others down.

    1. Thank you, Bethany! Yeah, I totally get what you mean. :) Telling your husband that he’s the best isn’t the same as making a blanket claim that he’s the “best husband ever” to other people. It’s more of a “you’re the best for me!” Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great to celebrate our loved ones, but some of the ways I’ve seen people do it have felt more like a competition.

  4. I love how you say, “He is the best boyfriend for me.” Because that’s all that really matters right?! Great perspective!

  5. This post was really inspiring and I have to agree with you too. I don’t like using a measuring stick to determine who is the best and who is not. You said it well!

  6. This is so true! I completely agree about not using the “measuring stick” of how great our significant other is because then we perpetuate the judging of others and then we have to deal with anger when they “fail” to meet our expectations.

  7. AMEN Emily! Thank you so much for sharing this. As someone who is still single I praise God for this testimony, ‘What exists are two people who are deeply flawed, but who deeply love because God, in his loving kindness, has given them grace.’

    God’s love and grace and scriptural wisdom flows through this. It is so incredible how God made us all different and unique and showers each one of His children with incredible amazing grace.

  8. Your guy really does seem like a sweetheart of a boyfriend. I’m glad you two have each other. Perfection is such an impossible standard anyway, I’m glad you’re not holding him to it. :)
    xoxo, erin | sandsunandmessybuns.com

    1. Thank you so much! Yeah – it’s hard when the world tells us we should strive for perfection, but the truth is that we’re more content when we seek to appreciate what we have!

    1. Grace! Aww! Thank you. I miss you, too, and our good times in China. Hope we can reconnect again sometime soon!

    1. Thank you! I am definitely blessed. I’m thankful for how God’s worked in our relationship because, honestly, it hasn’t been easy. We have had more fights than I can even count.

  9. I love this post so much! I subscribed to a blogger who later posted that her husband “is the best husband ever and that no matter what your [the reader] husband will never be as good.” Of course I instantly unsubscribed. Bloggers should be encouraging others, not making them feel insecure! I hate that idea that we need to compare our significant others against one another. My boyfriend is a great fit for me. But is he perfect? No! Is he perfect for everyone? No! But as two imperfect people, we work so well together! Thanks for showing us how to show to have an honest, healthy, and encouraging view of our relationships!

    1. Thank you so much!! I really appreciate your reading this post because it’s something I feel quite strongly about. I love that you also recognize the way your boyfriend is a great fit for you, but isn’t perfect! ALSO – I totally would have also unsubscribed from that blogger as well! Let’s help build each other up instead of tear each other down!

  10. Emily I love this. I will now look at things differently. And like you said no one is perfect. I feel sometimes there is a pedestal I have to keep Josh and I on and its not always that way. So when its not it is hard to express that to ANYone. I loved this read and loved your expression for it all. (:

    1. Aww, thank you, Tessa!! So glad you read it and that it resonated with you! I hope you and Josh are doing well – I miss your smiling face! It’s been so long since I’ve seen you!

  11. Beautifully said! Your boyfriend is the “best boyfriend ” for you! I will tell it over and over again, my husband is the best one for me! There is no way that I could be married to someone like me. God does put us together with people he knows will be a good fit! Sometimes we have to figure that out on our own .

    1. Aww, thank you so much, Laura! Yes – your husband is definitely the best one for you. It’s cool to see how God works relationships out. :)

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