Are You Starving Your Relationship?
My guy, Gary, and I were talking the other day about all the trips we’ve been on this year when I had a little epiphany.
Even though we are still in the “beginning” phase of our relationship with less than two years together, our trips have been way less “romantic” and much more “rush, rush, activity” centric. While we had one amazing vacation together in Jamaica where being together was the primary focus, our travels since then have generally revolved around work, trade shows and family gatherings. While it’s been a blast and we are both travel junkies who enjoy jumping on planes regularly, the fact is that while we enjoyed the shared experiences of those trips, neither of us can even pretend that we had the energy during them to focus on creating some exciting romantic opportunities.
Because, you know what happens when life is busy and too many things are demanding your attention. You get worn down and stop focusing on romance, even if your love is still new and thrilling. It can feel so damn good to have someone you love sharing your life with you that you figure it’s a fair trade, at least in the short term: calm and steady companionship instead of the energetic zeal of passion.
But, the joy of growing older is that we’ve both learned a lot. We experienced long marriages where the days quickly turned to months, and then to years without ever finding a “good time” to focus on reigniting passionate romance. Frankly, it’s also extremely possible that we had no clue how to do that, so there was no point in admitting that we wanted it.
I’m sure you know the feeling, anyone who’s ever been with someone for more than a few years does, even if they are still devoted to their partner. When you manage to take a vacation or getaway, the time flies by way too quickly because you are running around seeing sights, or socializing, shopping or just trying to have fun and relax for a little bit. If you are going at a reasonable pace you might have a few minutes each day to chill out before getting ready for dinner but emails, your book or a nap require less energy than a quickie and neither of you is overflowing with energy or lust. After all, you were crazy before the trip and so you are exhausted from the get go. Of course, then after dinner you’re full, probably a bit lazy after dessert, wine or drinks, and it’s late so your eyes are closing by the time you get back to your room. Even if one of you was feeling a bit frisky, a big yawn from the the other is enough to convey a very clear “not tonight, dear”. Or perhaps, if it’s been a long enough dry spell, or someone’s feeling guilty, you’ll stay up long enough for some BMS** before allowing a sigh of accomplishment, not passion, to escape. You exchange a loving, but rather perfunctory good night kiss; moments later one or both of you is snoring lightly.
To be clear, it’s not that you aren’t glad to be together, it’s not that you don’t love and want the other one, it’s just that your focus has been directed towards the world, not on your relationship. After all, we’ve grown up believing that all it takes for a good relationship is to “find the right person”. Lol. I’m an idealistic romantic and even I have to laugh at that fallacy.
But, I don’t want to deny the significant, comfortable and mature pleasure of being with someone you have and can count on without having to constantly attend to the connection. We need some sense of belonging to give us the strength and confidence to share our energy with the world instead of being obsessed with our love life like teenagers.
The only problem? Long term Complacency.
Being comfortable is easy. It feels safe. It’s what we think relationships aspire to. We get lazy without realizing it. Time flies by. Before we know it, we’ve lived great lives, had great times together, but our connection lacks the emotional, romantic depth it once had. The reserves have been drained and it’s thinned out because we haven’t spent the time and energy needed to refill it regularly.
We claim to be shocked and saddened when we finally emerge from our lethargy and are disappointed not to be “getting what we need” from the relationship. We blame it on “growing apart”, “life takes a toll”, “marriages aren’t meant to last so long” or whatever other story absolves us of the responsibility.
But the truth is, if we want our relationships to stand the test of time, we need to accept our responsibility for them and be responsible for the nurture and care they require. Relationships are like a garden, if you want either of them to grow and bloom and provide you with healthy sustenance, you have to spend time tending to it, nurture it with fertilizer and love, and protect it from the elements. If you ignore either, you can’t expect it to survive.
I admit that while Gary adores it, I hate gardening. It’s messy, requires commitment and the rewards aren’t worth it to me. But, romantic, passionate love? I’m all in. And Gary’s pretty keen on that too.
So far, we’re both still pretty crazy in love, thrilled to have found each other, and eager to do what it takes to make sure that our relationship always includes healthy doses of both calm, steady companionship and passionate romance. The truth is, it was seeing that possibility in the other when we met that drew us together. From our first meeting until now, we see the possibility of a lifetime of love, lust and laughter together. Isn’t that what brings every couple together? Is it greedy to want great love and romance for years together? If so, we’re ok with that. Why shouldn’t we all be greedy when it comes to savoring all the joys of love? I firmly believe that couples would be less likely to get divorced if they spent more time binging on passionate love together.
All of this has obviously been on my mind the past few weeks as I’ve been preparing for our upcoming Couple’s Camp. So, yesterday when Gary generously asked me what I wanted to for my birthday, suggesting all sorts of wonderful, exciting places we could spend the weekend, I said thanks but no.
I don’t want to be the barefoot shoemaker. I don’t want to wait until this wonderful connection we share is starving. I want to keep it healthy and blooming. I want to tend to it, nurture it, fuel it and watch it grow as much as it can. I want to relish our love; I want to be energized by our passionate connection. I want my love life to be just as exciting as my professional life, but I want him and our relationship to be the constant.
So, I took a deep breath and told him exactly what I want. What I need. What we deserve. What I offer my clients.
A weekend getaway that’s all about us.
A chance to intimately connect, talk and dream together without the distraction of work or family or real life worries. An opportunity to dig deeper together and learn even more about each other. A safe harbor to think about, ask for and receive honest feedback about what “MORE” each of us would like from our relationship. Time to love each other without rushing. The luxury of losing ourselves in love, lust and laughter together.
Our own Couples Camp*.
Because I want to invest in our relationship. The dividends are so worth it!
*If you also want to invest in your relationship while having as much fun as a kid at camp, CLICK HERE for more info and to apply for Cahoots Couples Camp, October 3-6, 2019!
**Boring Married Sex
Like what I'm Saying?
Cahoots Couples Camp is now accepting enrollment for the October 3-6, 2019 session. We will convene in a luxurious, spacious (12,000 sq/ft) private residence with a theater, game room, outdoor pool/hot tub, in Orlando. FL. Couples will wake daily to a decadent breakfast, an opportunity to enjoy a morning partner yoga, movement or meditation session before starting the day with interactive workshops, games and activities involving education, role play, risk taking, and relationship building exercises. We’ll finish the day with happy hour, dinner, conversation and free time. It is a curated experience crafted to allow rest, respite, connection and a romantic reset for your relationship.
No more excuses, it’s time to get sexy and reignite your passion for each other!
For more information please visit here
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