This is a collaborative post.
One thing that often comes up when discussing long term relationships and marriages is how do you do it? I am often amazed that my grandparents have been together for over fifty years and my mum and step dad will be celebrating their own 20 year anniversary this year. I think the best think you can do to keep your relationship alive is communication. I think right now everyone is feeling a bit overwhelmed and on top of each other so communication in these times is key.
Making each other laugh every day. A good sense of humour, someone that makes you belly laugh until it hurts, the same as they did when you first met, is a great way of connecting. Adam and I still laugh together and even in an argument he can say something so rediculous that it stops any confrontation in it’s tracks. Having funny memories to talk about is a great way to remember good times.
Discussing each other’s interests and passions. Even though we might disagree from time to time with the bigger issues talking about them really strengthens your connection with another person. Adam will patiently sit there whilst I rabbit on about the books and worldbuilding I love whilst I’ll nod along when Adam talks about his university assignments – although actually I love talking about those too because most of the subjects are really interesting. I think it’s important to have these passionate, sometimes a bit heated, discussions because you learn so much about the other person.
Having hobbies or interests outside of the relationship. This is important because it gives you a little bit of yourself. We both love to read but I’ve taken this a bit to the extreme with giving my instagram a strong bookish focus and wanting to write my own novel. We both love video games but different types which gives us something to talk about, show each other and sometimes play together. As we have similar interests it means we give each other equal time to persue those. Outside of the home I love to swim and it’s something I want to do more of when I’m able to again. Adam has work and university so has more to focus on, university particularly has kept him busy and researching topics important to him.
If you’re having trouble with communication than there are therapy options you can explore. These range from current online therapy, talk therapy, and face-to-face. These options would encourage you to both attend together and have someone help you to work through any issues, particularly communication issues that you might be having. You can find out more about marriage counselling here.
Though it may not be the ideal situation, there are also times when you have to learn that you are not the right person to be doing the communicating and that you should have someone stand in as your proxy. This includes hiring family lawyers if you are going through a separation and you are looking to solve things as amicably as possible. When it comes to the future of the marriage and especially the custody of any children involved, you don’t want to go in without the support you need.
Ultimately, everything comes down to communication and if you’re with someone you love and trust, nothing should be off the table or veteod for discussion.