Enter 10 years of marriage. Sweatpants come on at 6pm, you pee with the door open, a night out means staring at each other in silence because you've already told each other every story you have to tell, flowers only show up on Valentine's Day and your anniversary, and sex is hard to find because you're so busy with everything else. Just thinking of him reminds you that you need to do his laundry and shave his back hair.
There are a whole bunch of reasons that relationships lose their spark. But all of them can fall under bigger umbrellas. Here are the 6 big reasons relationships start losing their momentum.
- Loss of Physical Attraction - When we look at the same person year after year, the lose some of the original attractiveness that first drew you to them. It's not that they became ugly or anything. But after you've seen someone scratch their butt 1,000 times or seen them covered in baby puke for the fourth time that day, some of the sexy disappears.
- Merged Identity - When you get married, you become joined. You are one couple. But, that's not always an awesome thing. When everything becomes "we" and "our", you can lose yourself and what makes you you. Having separate parts and things in your life is a good thing. It reminds you that you are choosing to be with your significant other.
- "Letting Go" of Yourself - We are all guilty of this one. We spent so much time getting that other person hooked, and now that they are, you start slacking. You were make-up less often, you pee with the door open, you fart in front of your wife because it makes you laugh, the small little gestures that meant so much before have disappeared.
- Failing to Share Activities - Along with with having your own independent life, you do have to make sure you are still spending time together. And not just watching Netflix for two hours after the kids fall asleep. You need to keep trying new things and share new adventures.
- Less Personal Relating - Have your conversations with your significant other changed over time? Of course they have. Conversations become less personal and more practical or informative. You talk to each other just to exchange information. Those personal conversations start to dwindle if not disappear altogether. And those "heart-to-hearts" are still very important.
- Hidden Anger - When we are with someone for a long time, we tend to notice and hold onto their negative traits. We subconsciously build up a case against based on "bad" things they've done (or felt they've done). Harboring that can lead to feeling cynical and angry towards our significant other. You have to talk about those feelings you have on a regular basis or all that build-up can lead to a regrettable outcome.
So, we've got all this stuff going on. One, two, or all of them can be in play at any given moment. It's overwhelming, frustrating, and can make life pretty miserable. So what's to be done?
- Make time for each other - Make sure you are leaving time to spend together, just the two of you. Mark time out in your calendar if you need to. But you need to be spending at least a few hours together every week.
- Communication - Communication is key to any and every relationship. Once communication breaks down, so does everything else. Make sure you are telling your partner how you feel, what you're thinking about, and plans you want to make. Talk about things that annoy you about each other and the things you adore about each other. It can be hard and uncomfortable at times, but this will bring you back together.
- Pillow Talk - Stop bring your phones, your laptops, and TV into your bedroom. Your bedroom should be a gadget free zone. This is the time you just spend together everyday. Snuggle, talk, have some awesome sex. But no gadgets!
- Get fit - Just because you are in a long term relationship and your partner had promised to love you forever and ever, until the end of time, doesn't mean you should let yourself go. You need to keep taking care of yourself. It's easy to become a bit lazy or concerned with 100 other things, but keep yourself a priority. Your partner will appreciate it and you will feel better about yourself as well.
- Surprise each other - Those little surprises that you did for each other in the beginning of your relationship if a big deal. Just because you've been together forever doesn't mean those gestures don't matter. Bring back the "just because" flowers, spending the whole day watching football with your man (even though you might miss Once Upon a Time or some other show you love), send a sexy little picture or text in the middle of the day, etc.
- Go on a vacation or long weekend together - If you are able to do this, DO IT! It's amazing what a long weekend away from any and all distractions can do for your relationship!
- Get naughty - Yup. I said it. Get naughty, dirty, and sexy. Sex is a big part of any relationship. Don't be afraid to try new things, buy new lingerie, and turn up your inner stripper. Make a list of random places to get down and dirty in your house, buy a new toy or outfit, or dust of those sex kitten heels for a night out. Your hubby will appreciate it!!
- Don't take each other for granted - After doing all that hard work to get your relationship a bit closer to where it was, you have to remember not to let it slip again. The best way to do that is to not take each other for granted. Remember that you chose each other. You wanted to be together. The second you take your partner for granted is when things will start going down hill again. Remember why you fell in love with each other, and keep doing those amazing things for each other.
Now, this list isn't a cure all by any means. But it's definitely a good place to start. Just remember that it takes time and effort from both sides to make a relationship work. But if you are both willing to put in that time and effort needed, you've already gotten past the hardest part.