As of this writing, I have been in a long-term relationship for exactly seven years. And, I’ve always heard people throw around the phrase seven-year-itch. This refers to a point in a relationship where one or both partners start to feel dissatisfied in the relationship. But, truly, I don’t believe in that. A relationship takes commitment. It has cycles connected to major life changes. And, I believe that communication isn’t key — comprehension is. There are people who question the so-called spark and how we maintain it in a long-term relationship.
For a lot of people, the spark refers to that kilig feeling that we all feel. And, at this point, I admit that I still do feel that despite the years that we’ve spent with each other. I still look at my man and feel so lucky that I have him. Sometimes, I don’t even physically see him and the thought of having him in my life actually makes me tear up a little bit. We transitioned from that passionate to compassionate love where we just forged a deep emotional attachment with each other.
Maintaining the spark in a long-term relationship
There are so many reasons why people lose the “spark.” There are couples who are in long-distance relationships, contradicting schedules, and so much more. They lose that chemistry or particularly strong connection.
But, the truth is, even in the best relationships, romance will definitely dwindle if you don’t work on it.
That’s why I believe that communication is not just the key to a working relationship, comprehension is. If you talk and talk and talk but you don’t understand what the other is trying to convey, then it’s really not going to work.
Date night every week.
Whether you’ve been together for a few months or twenty years, make sure your date nights don’t decrease. It could be after work on Fridays or during the weekends. Work harder and make those date nights happen at least every week or every other week. My partner and I probably spend a significant amount of time fanning the flame and getting to know each other. Although we haven’t tied the knot, we want to make sure that we maintain the dating game well into our married life.
Trying out new things.
Being in a long-term relationship means it has become easy to grow complacent and lose sight of what made you enjoy being with each other, to begin with. But, the thing is, a strong relationship is also fed through experiencing new things together. Keep your relationship fresh, happy, and exciting. Together, achieve new goals, explore each other, and spend time looking at and doing new things together. It doesn’t have to be a traditional dinner or a movie. You can go hiking, roller skating, or on a simple vacation in a place you haven’t been to. These will help release endorphins and that “spark” in your brain and it will make both of you more likely to want to do it again.
Giving each other random surprises is a good way to keep the spark alive. At some point, relationships will become stale and routinary. But, that doesn’t need to be the case. Sure, a routine is good. However, when it comes to relationships, it gets boring. So, inject some fresh things into your romantic life and find ways to surprise your spouse. It doesn’t have to be a very costly surprise. You can stick a love note or put a letter in their bag before they go to work. You can give them a romantic at-home massage or buy them a simple gift. Aside from that, you can also spend some relaxing time with each other, especially after a busy week handling life’s responsibilities.
Daily reminders of why you love them.
Just as mentioned above, you can put notes in their bags before they go to work. This reminds them of why you love them. Or, just a simple I love you message every single day and every single night could work. Personally, my partner has given me a jar filled with little pieces of paper of “50 Things Why I Love You.” It was endearing to receive and when I feel down, I read at least one piece of paper just to make myself feel better. Or, you can do something else that will remind you how you love each other. It’s just a simple thing to do but it works every single time.
Do I even need to explain that? Affection goes a long way, especially when you do it according to their love language. For example, mine is physical touch and quality time. But, I do appreciate every single love language. However, I love the simple kisses, hugs, or even that normal hand-holding. I especially love it when he puts his hand over the small of my back. It makes me feel so small and petite even when I’m not. So, just make sure you do affection to each other in a way that they will recognize it.
Overall, communicate with each other and try to comprehend what they are trying to convey. Listen to each other’s needs and give in to that desire of reassuring them how much you love them. But, at the end of the day, having fun together is the best way to keep and maintain the spark alive.
Angela Grace P. Baltan has been writing professionally since 2017. She doesn’t hesitate to be opinionated in analyzing movies and television series. Aside from that, she has an affinity for writing anything under the sun. As a writer, she uses her articles to advocate for feminism, gender equality, the LGBTQIA+ community, and mental health among others.