No relationship is perfect, most have a make it or break it point and all are damn hard work. Here are the most common reasons people fall out of love and ways to stop them getting in the way of a happy ending – or any ending at all. Even if the reason for someone leaving looks to be something else, it’s very likely that the falling away started because of one of these.
They don’t feel appreciated.
The emotional resources of a relationship are like any other – they need to be spent and they need to be replenished. The things that mattered at the start still matter and they always will.
It’s not enough to expect someone ‘just to know’ he or she loved. It misses the point. Being openly loving and appreciative is fuel for any relationship and makes an intimate relationship different to any other.
I’ve made this mistake myself – a few times. When my world has become too busy and hectic – kids, work, life – I’ve take the person I love for granted. Eventually, I’ve realised and have able to pull it back. Every time, my cue has been that feeling of missing him – but when he’s right beside me. I can see how easily it would be for a relationship to slide slowly and silently into the zone of housemates, or strangers.
Relationships have a rhythm. They ebb and flow. Sometimes they’ll be at the top of the priority list and sometimes they’ll slip further down. The most important thing is not to let it stay down the list for too long and to be committed to looking after each other and the relationship when the connection starts to run low. There’ll always be enough time for whatever you decide to put as a priority.
You deserve someone who thinks you’re wonderful. So does the person you’re with. Adore them. Appreciate them. Acknowledge them.
If one person is doing all the giving without getting anything back, eventually the well will run dry and so will the relationship. When one – and it only takes one – feels unimportant to the other, the emotional connection will wither – it’s just a matter of time.
It’s easy to take each other for granted when life gets in the way but try these to keep the sparks sparking and the person you love close:
- Notice the little things.
- Say thank you, often.
- Tell them they’re wonderful.
- Acknowledge what you love, even if it’s just the way they look in a white t-shirt.
- Listen with your eyes.
- Make them a cup of tea.
- Say ‘good morning’ or ‘goodnight’ as though it’s good because of them.
- Throw a ‘you’ on the end of ‘Hello’. It makes ‘Hello’ sound like you mean it.
- Be affectionate.
- Praise or compliment them in public.
- Send a text: ‘Missed you today.’
- Kiss slowly. And often.
It makes a difference.
There’s no emotional connection.
The friendship has gone, or perhaps was never there.
Studies have shown that the love and passion that comes with the initial boost of marriage wears off after two years, which is why the best relationships are the ones that have genuine friendship at their core.
When the initial passion cools, a mature, loving, compassionate, relationship takes over. That’s not to say it won’t sizzle sometimes, but being able to connect emotionally is what sustains a long-lasting relationship.
Here are some ways to fuel an emotional connection:
- Talk regularly.
- Call for the sake of it.
- Ask about their day, and listen to the answer.
- Notice when they’re upset.
- Notice when they’re happy.
- Listen when they talk.
- Just because something doesn’t seem important to you, doesn’t mean it isn’t important to them.
- Acknowledge what they are feeling.
- Laugh. At yourselves and with each other.
- Know what’s happening in their world. Don’t just assume that you do.
- Be responsive: When the world is driving them crazy, be the soft place, velvety place for them to curl into.
- Be vulnerable. Open up and let your partner be there for you too.