Why do some relationships last forever and others fall apart? Here are some ways you can make your partner feel appreciated again and prevent your relationship from becoming a casualty.
1. Think of ways you can do the unexpected and be thoughtful. Remember what you did when you wanted to win your partner over.
2. Pay attention to your appearance. Dress nicely; get into shape.
3. Spend regular time together alone.
4. Look for ways to compliment your partner.
5. Hug when you say hello and goodbye. It makes people feel loved.
6. Be polite. Just because you are married doesn’t mean you can forget your manners.
7. When you want something, ask and say please.
8. When your partner does something for you, say thank you.
9. When you ask a question, make eye contact and listen to the answer.
10. Ask open-ended questions to encourage your partner to open up and talk. Open-ended questions begin like this:
a. Tell me about….
b. What do you think of….
c. What was it like when ….
11. Have you become passive with your partner because that’s the easiest way to avoid conflict? Over time, this is not a good idea. You will inevitably begin to build up feelings of resentment because you are stifling your feelings, thoughts, and opinions.
If you think you are choosing passive behavior too often, think about discussing it with your partner and asking him or her to help you be more assertive.
12. Researchers have found that people whose marriages last the longest have learned to separate from their families of origin (their own parents and siblings) and have appropriate, healthy boundaries. They value and honor their own privacy and separateness as a couple.
This means they have regular appropriate contact with their extended family, but it is not excessive, stifling or interfering.
13. Make a list of your partner’s positive qualities. Share this together and say why you think each is true.
Joyce Kyle is a licensed specialist clinical social worker who is one of four therapists at Client Centered Counseling, 105 E. Kansas Ave., McPherson.You can reach her at 620-241-2300.