14 days from now, we’ll be subjected to every Rom-Com ever made on every channel, loved up doe eyed couples fawning over each other in sickly sweet PDA’s, champagne will double in price, and roses will see a surge in popularity.
But that’s only one day of the year, and no one’s relationship is that Disney-esque. We all bicker and quarrel, bitch about our other halves to our friends and argue when things get too much. Even over the most banal of things.
However, if this is a consistent part of your relationship, there are fractures that need to be assessed, and one day a year is not going to magically heal them. One of the most important things to human nature is routine, and when you get stuck in a rut, it can seem quite hard to get out of it again. But there are some simple things you can do to give yourselves the best chances of success.
The main one is to talk, be open and honest about things, what is it that’s bugging you both? How can you address it without resorting to throwing things at each other and hurling insults so profane even I won’t write them down?
Look at your routine, we all have to work, so there’s no escaping that, but you don’t live in work 24/7. There are 24 hours in the day, a good 5 or 6 of these are spent ‘spare’. Work out a new pattern. ‘Date Night’ is an increasingly popular thing. Maybe once a week you get out of the house together and do something nice. If you have kids, get someone to look after them so you can have some couples time (kids are one of the main reason couples argue).
Put up a united front when it comes to decisions. It doesn’t matter if it’s your in-laws, disciplining the kids or marching into school to demand an explanation as to why Little Timmy has been suspended for fighting but the other kid hasn’t. Standing strong together not only strengthens your bond, but will give you comfort in knowing that someone has your back.
Put down the gadgets. Simply put, you don’t have to be glued to your phone, tablet, games console or the TV every minute of the day. Set aside family time, ideally meal times where you eat at the table. Good food often goes hand in hand with good conversation, and these one hour slots allow you to reconnect if the sparks are dwindling.
Pull your weight and help the other out. No one likes to feel put upon, and in all relationships one person is better than the other at some things, and vice versa. Work out your strengths and weaknesses, and then divide chores between you. Not only will things be done in half the time (giving you more time to relax together), but neither party will feel like a modern day slave.