Sometimes, even the most loving couples go through times of trouble in their relationship. It’s a part of the landscape of any marriage or coupling. Most of the time, you can weather these speed bumps without any trouble, but, occasionally, things aren’t so clear. You may have noticed red flags that things aren’t what they used to be. Some of these might even spell out deeper issues that get you thinking about ending things.
However, if there is hope and still a flicker of love remaining, it’s important to explore how the relationship could get better. After all, you don’t want to throw away something you’ve invested time and energy into, especially if you have children. You don’t want things to get so bad you’re new past-time is researching child custody rights and one-bedroom apartments. Take time to pour back into your relationship the love and attention you once did and see what happens. Here are a few ways to reengage with your partner when you’re struggling.
Spend More Quality Time Together
Though you both have your own lives, it’s important to spend quality time together regularly. I do, however, understand that life can get in the way of romance, especially long after the honeymoon period ends. The key is finding a balance between all the tasks you have to perform loving on each other. I recommend putting special time on your calendars so dates and intimate time happen regularly.
Return to having date nights like you did when you first met. This alone will help you rekindle reasons why you fell in love in the first place. Talk through any problems or concerns when they arrive instead of letting them eat away at your love. It also helps to have at least one common activity you both can enjoy together. This can be anything from doing art to going to the gym.
And for the big one… you need to have intimate time when you can explore each other’s physical needs and desires. This is so healing to a troubled relationship that I can’t stress it enough. Listen to one another in the bedroom and don’t ever criticize your partner’s ideas.
Forgive One Another
You and your partner will make mistakes throughout your lives. It’s how you both handle these bloopers that will determine how long the relationship lasts. Forgiveness, tolerance, and understanding are all things that heal the core of a relationship. I am talking about the little things that annoy you or for things done in the past. One way to prevent small differences from ruining a good relationship is to never go to bed mad or with unresolved issues.
Find time to talk about resentments in a calm and kind way. Get them out in the open and give your partner the opportunity to share as well. Listen, apologize, and try to move on. Be mindful of your tone, volume, and your intentions during conflict resolution. If you’re too angry to talk calmly, choose another time within 24 hours to reengage the conversation.
On a side note, do also know that if your partner has done something that is not safe or endangers you in some way, it’s time to get to a safe place before you even attempt to work things out.
If things aren’t going well with just the two of you, consider seeking relationship counseling or coaching. There are likely many tips, tools, and activities that neither of you thought of that could set you on a fresh, happier path. The key to making counseling work is practicing at home what you learn at the office.
Alternatively, talk to a trusted mutual friend or family member if you believe their experience and persona could make things easier for you both. They need to remain unbiased and offer support for the relationship and not just one of you.
Of course, each relationship is different and will require varying steps to bring it to an optimal place. Just know that if you love each other and want to work things out, it is possible. Be patient and give it time to heal and adjust to any new things you try.