Q: I have been in a relationship for 6 years now. We get along well, but somehow the spark we had in the first year of dating is missing now. I don't want to upset her but am also not sure how to bring this up. Help, please.
Ans: Your feelings come from a place of genuine care, which means that you are not just getting along, you have real deep emotions for your partner. And 6 years? That’s really long for the times we live in, where people can’t even sustain 6 minutes of attention for someone.
The best way to bring anything up is to first express how you feel towards your partner. Tell them how much you care about them and how you want this relationship to last. They will feel safe hearing this and will be more open to any suggestions and plans.
Secondly, find out how they feel about the relationship. Remember that there is two of you in this. They might be feeling the same way – a little bored. If not, tell them you really want to love them more and make your relationship even better. Who says no to that?
Once you have them on board, go on memory lane together and pull out what made the relationship exciting back then. What feelings made you excited? Was it the novelty? Was there distance and time scarcity between you two? Were there restrictions and prohibitions? Was there more play and ambiguity? All these aspects and obstacles make the honeymoon phase (the first year) more exciting.
Sustaining the rush is often about understanding how you want to feel; honestly communicating needs and desires; visualising the playground together and also creating distance in order to experience longing. It is hard work, but it is also a very rewarding experience that creates deeper connections with our partners.
(The writer is an Intimacy & Relationship Coach and an Independent People and Culture Specialist focusing on relationships, sexuality, youth and social media in South Asia.)
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