Two very common complaints which couples have about their relationships after some period of time has gone by involve sex and romance. “The romance has died,” or “the passion has gone out,” are such widespread complaints as to be almost ubiquitous. There are a couple of reasons that this happens. The first is that many people experience an initial head-over-heels plunge when they meet someone exciting. Everything about that person is new and mysterious. Romance can be defined as encapsulating the feeling of excitement or mystery surrounding love. It can also be defined as encompassing the activities which couples engage in to court each other.
The initial surge of excitement we feel when we meet someone can fade with time; the reason for that is partly chemical. Our bodies just can’t exist with all those racing hormones all the time—life is not a permanent high and never will be. The other reason however is pure laziness. In our society we’re taught to value the new over the old, and to expect our relationships to get dull with time. Not only that, but many people think that once they’ve got something, they no longer need to put effort into keeping it, and that includes love. That means courtship rituals fall aside; couples stop exchanging significant looks or compliments, and the intimacy can slip away. With the loss of intimacy comes a loss of physical and emotional connection, which generally can lead to a stale or even an absent sex life.
Be Realistic, Not Lazy
No amount of romance or sex is ever going to make your life into a permanent high. You’re going to have comfortable routines and stability in any healthy relationship. This is not a bad thing—much of what gives long-term relationships meaning transpires in the day to day, the ordinary, the routine. Instead of letting that get you down, learn to integrate that into your relationship in a positive way. In other words, be comfortable in your relationship, not stagnant.
How to Bring the Romance Back
While for some couples romance and sex are not deeply intertwined, for most they are. Those feelings of excitement and mystery may fade as you get to know your partner, but losing intimacy is the result not only of those raging hormones settling down but also a lack of effort to engage with your partner. This is especially common after marriage, since marriage is typically seen as a “goal” of a relationship. Once that goal is met, what then? Most couples stop putting the same level of effort into making signs and signals of their affection, which reduces intimacy. Here are some ways to reach out to your partner:
- Give your partner an unexpected gift. If you’re trying to reignite your passion for each other, why not make it a sexy gift, like some new lingerie or a nice evening dress? Sex toys are also good gift ideas.
- Drop more compliments. When you’re dating someone, compliments are a way to signal that you’re interested. Why not signal that you’re still interested? Compliments show you’re paying attention, and that you still find your partner attractive, and are willing to make effort to show it. Back when you first met your partner, you probably mentioned how much he or she meant to you pretty often. How often do you do it now?
- Slow down. This may sound like an odd one, but think about it. How much of your time is wrapped up in getting stressful things done which are related to work, your budget, and other un-romantic things? Take some time to really look at your partner when you talk to him or her. Spend more time cuddling and enjoying each others’ company. Replace perfunctory kisses with long, enjoyable ones.
- Communicate. Most people, if they’re going to be honest, can probably come up with a list of things which are lacking in their sexual or romantic lives. Consider simply asking your partner how you can be more romantic or whether he or she is looking for anything new in terms of sex. Hopefully your partner will ask you too. This can be a great way to show you care and to reconnect!
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