This was written by Stephanie Jullien, a bourgeois woman in the 1830s. It shows me that human concerns have never changed. She was writing to her brother about what she expected from her future marriage. She did not want romantic passionate love, the kind that makes one do stupid things but:-
" A feeling that makes one want to see someone, that makes his absence painful and his return desirable, that makes one interested in what another is doing, that makes one want another's happiness almost in spite of oneself, that makes finally, the duties of a woman towards her husband pleasures and not efforts. "
Whilst women today are not beholden by duty to their husbands or partners, her words sum up the feelings on should feel towards your significant other. It is an interesting way of defining love, far removed from the romance sold to us by Hallmark and romcom films. I cook tea for Chris, not out of duty, but because it is a pleasure to see him eat food I've prepared and the happy satisfied look on his face. I miss him when he's not there, and want to ask about his day. I suppose this is a parallel to the famous bible verse from 1 Corinthians 13 that gets brought out at weddings, and has resonance whether you are religious or not.
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.