When you were dating, you were excited. When you got married, you were excited. During the beginning of your marriage, you were excited. Now, things have become routine and things are just there. Whether you want more for yourself or are concerned that your husband will develop a seven-year itch and leave you and the kids, there are things you can do to change things and bring the spark back into your marriage.
Communication is one of the biggest problems in many marriages. Problems that remain unchecked are likely to lead to divorce, says Pamela Minelli of the University of Southern California, as cited on the Communication in Marriage website. Early in your marriage, communication issues may have been a problem because you found it difficult to really communicate with each other. Now, you have been together for years and you have talked about a whole range of things, so now you and your husband think you know where the other one is. It is important to check in with each other. As you change things around to bring excitement back into your relationship, it will be important that you know that you are on the same page.
2. Twist it Up
After being married a while, you and your spouse began to fall into certain routines. Predictable routines can lead to boredom, which can lead to long-term dissatisfaction with the rest of your marriage, as Irene Tsapelas and her colleagues have discovered, as cited in the journal "Psychological Science." Even though these routines changed when you had kids, but even without checking the juice carton, you know when your spouse’s orange juice will be empty. He knows when you will make meatloaf. A certain amount of routine can be essential, but routine doesn’t add spice to your life. So, twist it up and do something unexpected. Think back to when you were dating. This can be as inexpensive as creating a picnic on the living room floor or guiding him to bed with rose petals when your child is spending the night with a friend.
3. Realize Forgotten Excitement
Think back to the things you and your husband used to talk about wanting to do. Chances are, by now, you and your husband will not have realized many of these goals. Some of these past dreams may not seem so exciting now, but some of them still might excite you. As you plan to allow you and your husband to live or relive these dreams, you feel excited about the plans, and a certain amount of spice will come just the concerted effort that you two are doing for each other. The effort itself expresses commitment and love.
4. Overcome Challenges
As your lives have changed, barriers have developed that block some avenues for excitement. These external overstress contribute to conditions that lead to dissatisfaction, according to an article by Benjamin R. Karney on the American Psychological Association's website. One or both of you may have a stressful job or a job that uses up a lot of your time. Having children certainly makes it difficult to drop everything and go away for a romantic weekend together. It is easy to allow these challenges to stop you from treating your relationship with your husband with the prioritized importance it deserves. You have to find ways to not let these challenges stop you from feeding your relationship on a regular basis. It is important for you to carve out time for intimacy, including emotional, physical and sexual intimacy. The excuses will still be there, but work with your husband to bring the spice back into your marriage.
- American Psychological Association: Keeping Marriages Healthy, and Why It’s So Difficult
- Psychology Today: The Seven Year Itch: Theories of Marriage, Divorce, and Love
- Psychological Science: Marital Boredom Now Predicts Less Satisfaction 9 Years Later
- CommunicationInMarriage.net: Marital Communication Issues and Divorce
- Psychological Bulletin; The longitudinal course of marital quality and stability: A Review Of Theory, Methods, and Research; B.R. Karney & T. N. Bradbury
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