Monday, September 10, 2007

Breaking out of a relationship slump

Alisha: The older I get, the more I realize life is about slumps and bouncing out of those periods of deterioration. Relationships are no different. Whether you've been married for one month and your sex life is lackluster or you've been dating for one year and you no longer get love notes, there are ways to break through. I'd define a relationship slump as a time when you're not feeling desired by your partner or you feel as though the passion has dissipated.

What are your ideas to break through the doldrums of a slump?

Deirdre: The first thing I'd recommend is to spend some time apart -- at least a week. I'd go so far as to say no phone calls or e-mails or texts, but if you're married with kids, that may not be possible. People often see things differently when they're away from the situation .... and absence really can make the heart grow fonder. But if that absence feels pretty damn good, then I think you know why you're in a slump. Maybe you shouldn't be together.
Alisha: I'd suggest doing something to spice up the love life. Take photos of yourself in sexy lingerie. Get a hotel room for the night, even if it's two miles down the road. Go salsa dancing or to a club where you have to dance close.
Deirdre: Our environment can contribute to the continuation of a slump, so I say change the scenery at the most basic of places: Your house. It could really up your mood. Paint a room a bold color. Rearrange the furniture. For the bedroom, splurge and buy really nice sheets. It'll make you feel decadent.
Alisha: Interesting. Not sure I'd ever think about changing the ottoman out, but what could it hurt? If it's a particularly bad time, maybe it's worth going to a counselor because that bold of a move should raise flags the slump needs to end soon.
Deirdre: I also think couples should revisit their hopes and dreams, what they want to accomplish together. If their plans for the future differ, that's a signal something is very wrong.
Alisha: Taking a vacation is one way to jump start those loving feelings again, and a way to at least momentarily leave behind the everyday routine. My husband and I went to the lake for a one-day getaway and it really worked wonders for us.
Deirdre: This should light some sparks: read erotica aloud to each other. Or on a workday, pick out each other's underwear. What a turn-on it could be, knowing that under your clothes you're wearing what your lover chose for you ... Rowr.
Alisha: Write a letter to your partner. Tell something you have never said outloud before or list every detail of how you fell in love. And no e-mail. A real letter.
Deirdre: Yes! And mail it! It's so nice to get something in the mailbox besides a bill. And I say revel in the senses. Get a couple's massage. Go shopping together for perfume and cologne. Blindfold your partner and feed them, a la "9 1/2 Weeks." (And if you've never seen it, rent it and watch it together!)
Alisha: Try cooking dinner together and keep the TV, the crackberry, the Internet and the cellphones turned off. And strive to keep the relationship exciting!


Anonymous said...

Somebody actually pays you to write this stuff?

No wonder I cancelled my subscription to the paper years ago.

rod said...

Bringing her flowers "for no special occasion" is a good way to start. An overnight getaway or weekend vacation has always worked for us as a way to set aside the daily grind and re-connect to each other.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 9/10, 1:30 pm, is clearly a grouch who isn't getting any...this is a blog about RELATIONSHIPS...of course they get paid to write this stuff! As for the topic, I'm with Alisha about spending time together alone, to rebuild that spark you used to have.

Anonymous said...

I like the idea about just changing something drastically in your environment. If anything, it gives you something news to keep talking about... of course, my boyfriend and I usually start conversations by me walking around complaining about his mother. He starts to laugh and we end up talking about anything for hours.