"I'm on your team."
A few years ago, I heard one of my best friends say this very sentence to her husband. They were talking about something... yadda yadda yadda... and he felt like she wasn't on her side. She said to him, "Honey, I'm on your team." He smiled and said, "I know."
Since that day, I've heard her say this many more times. It expresses her commitment to their bond and it let's her husband know that in the end, she's always got his back. If you take a minute to think about it, it's actually a really important sentence to say every now and then. In fact, I think that this sentence is so important that it has become one of my relationship mantras over the last few years.
At a certain point in a relationship, partners begin to integrate their separate lives into a shared life. You start combining your lives physically, emotionally, and communicatively. You may use "we" language, plan your days (and nights) around each other's schedules, develop joint attitudes, or even move-in together. Once you enter this stage, there is usually some sort of understood commitment between the two of you. This is where being on the same team becomes evident as an important relationship maintenance behavior.
Understand that it's not enough to just say it. I mean, it helps, but you want to also show your partner that when it comes down to it, you're always going to be on his or her side. To play on the same team, you should have your partner's back whenever he or she is sad, in trouble, arguing with someone, complaining about work, parenting your children, or the like. Making an effort to play on the same team is vital to your relationship stability and satisfaction.
So the next time your boyfriend feels like the world is against him or when your wife is in a heated discussion with one of your friends, stand by your mate. Showing (and telling) your partner that you play on the same team is a great way to reinforce your love and dedication.