Are You Roommates or Romantic Partners? Reigniting Romance in Your Marriage
As time goes by and you grow more comfortable with each other in your marriage, you may find that both you and your partner put less effort into the relationship. The demands of parenting and work often leave partners feeling exhausted, diminishing their motivation to try new things together. Relaxation takes priority over seeking adventure or spending quality time alone with each other. Eventually, you find yourselves resembling roommates rather than romantic partners, no longer engaging in late-night conversations due to fatigue. Your busy schedules and responsibilities with the kids cause your relationship to feel disconnected, like two ships passing in the night.
In some cases, couples create so much distance that they start sleeping in separate bedrooms and no longer attend events together. While one partner may be more aware of this change and bring it up, the other may make excuses or deny the state of their marriage altogether. This stage of marriage, which occurs as children grow and couples have less time alone, often goes unspoken.
However, if left unaddressed, one partner may begin feeling increasingly alone and withdrawn. If you're experiencing this stage in your relationship, there are simple steps you can take to reconnect with your partner and revive the romance. Making an effort to compliment your partner or surprising them with enjoyable things can make a difference. But if you feel that nothing has helped you reconnect, the following five suggestions, when consistently practiced, can help you and your partner reestablish your romantic connection and get back on track.
Spend time apart from each other: If you spend all your non-working time together, your relationship may become dull and monotonous. Set aside some time to invest in your individual interests and then share what you've learned or experienced during a date night away from the kids.
Date your partner as if they were a stranger: Dress up, put effort into your appearance, and treat yourself the way you used to on dates. Buy a new dress or borrow one from a friend, style your hair, and pamper yourself. Return to the place where you first met and do everything you can to make the night romantic for your partner.
Schedule time for intimacy: It's difficult to feel intimate and connected when you're sleep deprived. By scheduling time for sex, you are also scheduling time for relaxation, ensuring that the kids are taken care of by a sitter. Embrace physical affection such as touching, hugging, kissing, and dancing with your partner – all the connections you may have relinquished due to a hectic schedule.
Hit the road: Going on an overnight trip or a weekend vacation can breathe new life into a lackluster marriage. Couples who get away from their routine often gain fresh perspectives and feel more motivated to invest energy, romance, and time into their relationship.
Take a class together and practice appreciation: Participating in a new class together provides a common goal and fosters positive energy and a sense of connection. Whenever you see your partner doing something kind for you or others, let them know and share it with the world. When your partner hears you praising them, they feel validated and supported, which are crucial for a sense of connectedness and romance.
The roommate stage may happen, but you don't have to remain stuck there. By practicing these five steps, you can break free from that stage and rediscover a fulfilling partnership with your spouse, where you'll find yourselves engrossed in deep conversations long into the evening before you know it.