Growing apart


Relationship requires attention and intention…

If you are constantly spending less time together, going to bed at different times, consulting each other less and less, keeping secrets, feeling lonely when together, not having sex, etc – these are all signs of crisis in a couple’s life, signs of growing apart.

It is incredibly easy to fall into this trap because we live such busy lives and we communicate less and less, we do not live consciously and are not committed.
Fortunately, things can get better and a couple can reconnect and grow together again.

We suggest you try the following:
Talk about your life and feelings. Try to find ways to reconnect and grow back together. Do not blame each other but work together. Find some time to spend it together, go away for the weekend, look for couples counselling, do things together…
Do not wait too much; do not wait until your relationship is too damaged.

It could be helpful to bring back old habits, things you used to do when falling in love, but forgot over time. What are the things you enjoyed doing together? What activities helped you grow together?
Do not forget to have time committed just for the two of you and to have regular days to go out together, to remember the past, to share something beside family life and responsibilities.

Sex is a good barometer for how healthy a relationship is. Talk about it, schedule it and practice it. Since everyone’s needs and desires are different, discuss them; find some solutions that will satisfy both partners.

Express your needs avoiding conflict using accusations and criticism. For example, if you think your partner spends too much time in front of TV you can say „You are always in front of TV!“ or you can try „I’d like to spend some time with you. What do you think about it?“ and invite your partner to a dialogue; do not incite your partner’s defensiveness.
It is important to keep things interesting and exciting in some ways. Visit new places, start a new hobby, do something unexpectedly, surprise one another, compliment each other’s appearance when going out…

Create a positive climate in your marriage. It does not necessarily mean you have to do some grand; no great gestures or sweeping changes are required. Here we talk about small things, easy to do throughout the day – greet you partner lovingly in the morning, hug him/her, tell him/her something positive, nice, stay connected throughout the day – send an e-mail, SMS or communicate in some other way, hug each other more often, touch each other, take one’s hand, compliment your partner, express your appreciation, do not take anything for granted, focus your attention on the things your partner does, not just what he or she fails to do.

To avoid growing apart couples must remain interested in one another. One of the ways to do that is a deep conversation, good and meaningful communication, one that allows us access our partner’s feelings and inner thoughts.

It is important to listen and avoid preaching and complaining, criticism, contempt, sarcasm, eye-rolling, distancing, etc.
Ask about other party’s feelings, about his or her opinion, plans, goals… Here are some questions for illustration:
You are frustrated about work? How does this make you feel? What would help you to get through this?
How can I support you as your partner?
What would you like to change in our life? What are your goals for next month/year/five years?
What would you like us to do much often? Less?
What would you change about me? About yourself?
What are you happiest with in life?

If you are new parents, talk about it – how it has changed you, what you like most about being a parent, how do you see family life, what would you change?
Relationship does not require hard work, but requires attention and intention. In order to stay healthy (and happy) a relationship requires daily attention and care.

If you are feeling distance in your relationship, your partner probably is feeling it too. Talk about it and seek for help. There are many things you can do yourselves; for some do not hesitate to ask for professional help.

“Couple Lying In Bed”- Image courtesy of Ambro / 

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