Relationships start with passion, but no matter who your partner is, that passion will always fade. At some point in a long-term relationship when this passion has fizzled out, at least one of you will become aware of it and it can actually make them miserable. This misery stems from sheer boredom, a feeling that the whole thing's become stale. But fear not! There are ways to reinvigorate a flagging long-term relationship. Check out our 10 tips for a healthy long-term relationship:
It's human nature to start tuning out things, and people, as we become more used to them. There's no malice in it, it's just what happens: these permanent parts of life are just so familiar to us that we start to take them for granted. The only way to counteract this inclination is to make a conscious effort to overcome it. Take the time to compliment your significant other. You may feel that it's unnecessary (after all you wouldn't still be with them if you didn't find them attractive, or at least you shouldn't) but a compliment is always appreciated.
You should still take the time to go on regular dates to stop yourselves from feeling like you're in a rut. If you find yourself spending night after night simply crashing in front of the TV with your partner, it can be pretty damn depressing.
8) Appreciate their interests
To pay no heed to their interests, or worse to belittle them, throws another spanner in the relationship works. It's like pointing at a big part of your partner's life and designating it as something as you don't give a shit about. I'm not saying you have to love Ultimate Frisbee as much as they do, I'm just saying don't dump all over whatever it is they care about. Try to indulge them at least a little.
Remember the name of the game is trying to keep things interesting. Don't be afraid to try doing strange new things with your partner, it can give a new lease of life to a floundering relationship.
6) Give them space
Partners smothering each other is another path to an unhealthy relationship. Give each other enough room so that things remain comfortable for both of you.
5) Take care of yourself
Don't just assume that since you've had yourself a boyfriend or girlfriend for awhile that they will just stick around if you totally let yourself go. To keep them interested, and to keep your own confidence levels up, take good care of yourself.
4) Share responsibilities
Just because your partner tends to take care of things a lot doesn't mean they want sole responsibility, it just means that they're picking up your slack. Show your appreciation by taking your share of the load every now and then.
3) Be up front
Even if you're still in your early twenties, being in a long-term relationship forces you to ask yourself some big questions. Namely, where is this going? Could I actually see myself marrying this person? Do I even want to get married to anyone? Do I want kids? Do they?! You need to find out where you stand with this other person because if you're both on two different wavelengths, you could be wasting each other's time. Just be completely honest.
2) Maintain a social life
Another nail in the long-term relationship coffin is dependency. You see it all too often; your mate gets into a relationship and you barely see them for years until they resurface as a singleton. To stop yourself from becoming an antisocial hermit, you need to make the effort to keep up with your friends. It will benefit your partner too when they feel more freedom to hang with their friends as well.
1) Have sex
A pretty important one. The passion between you will disappear completely if you don't try to keep your sex life alive. The lack of physical intimacy over lengthy periods can be devastating to a relationship, making the whole thing feel loveless, empty and pretty much dead. For everyone's sake, make a concerted effort to knock boots on a regular basis.