When you Google “How to keep the romance alive,” millions of options show up. So why do people still have so much trouble in relationships? How can you be romantic in a time when romance seems difficult and sometimes forced?
The first thing to note is that every relationship is different. What works for Jane and Dick won’t work for Jack and Jill, and vice-versa. Another thing to be aware of if you’re struggling in a relationship is that it shouldn’t be all on you. Think of a relationship like a shelf. The more you are together, the more things you can place on the shelf, but the heavier the shelf gets. If the shelf doesn’t have two equally stable and strong supports, it will fall. Even if it has the strongest support known to man on one side, it still needs another support on the other side.
With all that’s going on in the world, some relationship shelves have fallen or weakened. It happens! The majority of the world is at home right now and for the foreseeable future. If you’re living with a partner, you might have learned things about them that you truly never needed to know. You might have been married for years before quarantine, but yet you’re still amazed by how much you didn’t know about your opposite half.
So how do you keep your relationship alive in times like this? Well, here are a few things you can apply to your love life.
1. Ask Questions
Life right now can seem monotonous and boring. Some days, the most exciting thing you do will be eating dinner. Something to keep in mind is that you have a full, complete, complex human with you who is full of life. You might have known each other since second grade or have met in the past year; either way, keep asking questions and getting to know your partner. More than likely, you don’t know everything about them and you never will. See this time spent together as a time to grow in your knowledge and love for each other by asking questions! If you are having a hard time thinking of questions, just Google them. Here is a list of fifty questions about your partner.
Remember, showing interest in them and curiosity also blesses them and lets them know you care. You also don’t have to get personal with the questions. The world now is full of interesting stories. Watch the news together, talk about your opinions on it, or find videos on YouTube and watch them together.
2. Plan Some Date Nights
I know the pandemic might not allow for too many nights out on the town, but start getting creative! Make dinner together, rent a movie online, get some food and do an indoor picnic. If you have kids, set them up with a movie too. Stay at home date nights are sometimes the most special because you can tailor them to your personal needs. Our Editor in Chief’s kids created a whole restaurant in her house for her and her hubby to ‘go’ on a date night during quarantine!
3. Keep Up The Effort
Remember what I said about the shelf? Maybe show some of that support more than you usually do. I like to make a conscious effort to ask my boyfriend at the beginning of every week, “How can I love you this week?” This question allows him to tell me if anything is concerning him about our relationship or his life and lets me know how to love and support him through that. Ask your partner how you can help them or support them if they have something that seems daunting in the next few days. Sometimes just sharing that with you lessens their load and helps them know that they have a support system. Read about the 5 love languages and talk to your partner about them. Finding out how to properly love someone during this time is more important than ever and will help your partner feel loved, heard, and supported.
4. Don’t Stop Celebrating
Even though not many things seem celebratory in everyday life right now, find the small victories and go crazy on them. My friends made American themed cupcakes on Election Day. I went to go get cookies last night to celebrate the end of a great weekend. My boyfriend doesn’t know it yet, but he’s going to take me out to dinner to celebrate my new job. There are a million little blessings you can find in your day and when you reflect on them, you’ll have a more positive outlook on life. Also, when you include your partner in the victories, they can be excited for you too!
5. Keep Communicating
You might not live with your partner and that might make this pandemic a whole different issue for you. Keep communication up. Have a FaceTime date once a week where y’all both order dinner to your houses and then have a Netflix party. Send voice messages instead of texts — sometimes hearing the other person’s voice is more helpful than you can imagine. If you can, try to go out and take a walk together so you can see each other in a pandemic-safe way. We live in an age of technology that has made staying in touch during the pandemic much easier than it would have been even five years ago — take advantage of that.
6. Take Time For Yourself
I know, this is an article about relationships and togetherness, but one way to keep the time you spend with your partner special is to not have that time be all the time. Take breaks. If you live together, maybe go out and do some things on your own. Remember that the only way to properly love someone is by fully loving yourself first. Take yourself on a date every now and then. Be selfish with your time and really focus on what makes you happy. That way, when you do come back together with your partner, you can know just what you want to do.
7. Do One Thing A Day That Blesses Them
This might be writing them a sweet good morning text. It could be sitting down and watching the football game with them. It even can be making them coffee. Do something that is selfless and shows that you’re thinking about them. A little effort goes a long way, especially when you’ve been in the relationship for a while. The little things that you did to get that person have long since been phased out, so maybe reintroduce them into the relationship.
Relationships can be hard, and life seems a little harder right now too. Something to remember, though, is that you have a partner for a reason. You love them and they love you. Let them be your cheerleader, let them be your support system when you need it, let them love you. There are a million ways to be romantic with them, so do it. Take advantage of the love y’all share and work on fostering and growing it. Life is a little crazy and unstable right now, but your relationship doesn’t have to be. Have fun bringing a little romance and spice back into your relationship.