Although I am young, I am engaged to be married, and I have been in a monogamous relationship since I was 18 years old. Many people turn their noses up at me and question my devotion to my partner and his for me. For awhile, I was blindly agreeing with them, feeling that there is no possible way two people in their 20’s can get married, stay married, and stay happy. But through fighting, counseling, and reading a lot of self-help books, I have come to realize that although those people have some basis in their judgement, it is very possible and I am living proof.
Whether you are 20, 30, or 80, I don’t believe you will never be “prepared” enough to handle certain issues. Issues are trying and difficult which is why they’re called issues. It’s all about working, and working hard. No matter how old or young you are, in my opinion, it’s always going to be hard, and it’s always going to be work. But if it’s worth it for you, go for it. As long as both of you are open and vulnerable, you can overcome any obstacle. Here are some tips that I have come across thus far that have helped my man and I be happy, sexually fulfilled, and fresh in our long-term, monogamous relationship.
My first tip is to make time for connecting between just you and your loved one. No TV, no cellphones, iPads, Macbooks, Androids or iPad minis. Just the two of you. Even if you hang out regularly or live together, which you probably do if you are in a long-term, monogamous relationship, pinpoint a certain time every week or even in the day for just the two of you. Even if it’s only for 10 minutes at a time, you should dedicate time for the two of you to sync up and reconnect after running around in your busy lives. For example, my fiancé and I do something called “Soul Gazing”. My fiancé is the one that actually came up with it.
Basically, you stare into each others eyes. But instead of “just staring” you are trying to ‘look into your partner’s soul,’ hence the name, “Soul Gazing”. I see it as a type of meditation, but instead of trying to center yourself within yourself, you are attempting to center yourself with another person. It truly is an amazing feeling once it’s over and you fall asleep in each other’s arms. Even if I get home at 12:00 AM, we will try to do this for 5 minutes or so, just so we can reconnect before bed. But sometimes this exercise is so powerful we don’t even end up sleeping. If you catch my drift.
2. DON’T BE NAKED ALL THE TIME
This one may sound a little silly, but hear me out… When you have lived with someone for a while you see EVERY SINGLE INCH OF THEIR BODY and it’s totally fine. You are no longer embarrassed and you feel like you could walk around naked all day everyday for the rest of your life. Most times? That’s exactly what ends up happening. But what happens when you’re about to get down with your significant other and there are no clothes to take off? It kinda loses it’s excitement. Now don’t get me wrong there is nothing wrong with being naked all the time, but when we make a conscious effort to keep your clothes on most of the time, it’s a lot more exhilarating and sexy to undress each other. It’s like unwrapping a gift; if the gift is handed to you with no wrapping paper, you don’t get the opportunity to tear it all off. Just think it over, I think you will come to agree.
3. BE SPONTANEOUS
Spontaneity is the one thing that keeps ANYTHING in life from becoming stale. When my fiancé does something spontaneous, I instantly feel more in love with him. When you are with someone for a long time daily life becomes routine, and the days just seem to fly by. The same things happen every single day; you get up, take a shower, get dressed, eat breakfast, drive to work, etc. Obviously this is a normal and natural part of being an adult and having a busy life, but you shouldn’t let the monotonous routine of daily life ruin your beautiful relationship.
Surprise each other now and then! Almost everyone loves surprises. Even if they say they don’t they are probably just trying to spare their own feelings for when you don’t surprise them. Then they can say “Well, I don’t like surprises anyway.” But everyone likes surprises.
Bring her flowers, give him head in the shower when he’s not expecting it, take her out dancing on a Friday night, put a new dress on the bed with a note saying you will pick her up at a certain time, buy him that video game or those pair of shoes he’s been eyeing, get dressed up in lingerie and surprise him when he comes home from work. The options are endless. There are many ways you can bring spontaneity into your relationship, and they don’t all have to include sex or sexual acts. Sexual surprises are fun, but so are sweet gestures that signify how much you care about, and adore the person you’ve chosen to spend your life with. These things can help you become closer and keep that spark in your relationship.
You would think this one would speak for itself, but for me it never did. Obviously I know that communication is crucial in every aspect of life, whether it be at work, with family and friends, in relationships, or even in school; but that doesn’t mean that I or anyone else was born with the communication skills of a poet or a scholar. Most of us are pretty stupid, and it’s mostly due to Facebook and texting and all of that nonsense. We have lost the social skills we once had when we were younger, and now we don’t know how to express our needs in a kind, non – damaging way, whilst still getting what we need to feel valued, loved, and understood.
This has always been a huge problem of mine. I am a great communicator when it comes to work, poetry, and helping when friends are in need; but when it comes to matters of the heart I have a tough time expressing my distress without blame. I also have a hard time hearing someone else’s distress without feeling like they are attacking or blaming me. This is a common problem among relationships both young and old, but I vowed to myself and to my mother that I would not end up a divorcé.
I tracked down a study that Dr. Orbuch through the National Institutes of health decided to conduct. He interviewed divorced people and asked them multiple questions about their past marriages. One of the questions was what they wish they could have done differently in their past marriage(s), and what they will do differently next time. A poor communication style was the Number 1 thing that divorced people said they would change.
With that being said, there are many ways that you can become more connected and communicate more effectively with your partner. The tool that helped us the most is this awesome book called “The 5 Love Languages” written by Gary Chapman. After reading this book, or taking their online quiz, you will discover what your love language is. Most of the time, people who are in a relationship have the same love language, and that’s why it is hard for them to communicate. It’s hard to communicate something to someone else that you want for yourself, and that’s where a lot of conflict arises.
Kissing is beautiful. Kissing is something that helps two people feel connected, loved and sometimes even horny. This is something that a lot of couples take advantage of. For me, I always felt that when my fiancé and I made out, that meant we had to have sex. There is nothing wrong with kissing leading to sex, but sometimes it would stress me out because I just wouldn’t be in ‘the mood’ so I didn’t want to kiss at all for the fear of it leading to sex. I don’t know if I’m alone on this one, but either way I think it’s an important tip to include.
The way couples, or at least in my relationship, take advantage of kissing is by not kissing simply for the sake of kissing. A lot of couples don’t just kiss to show love, or kiss to connect briefly. Most couples seem to kiss to initiate sex. When I think back on my past relationships, besides my first boyfriend when I was still a virgin, I don’t remember kissing any one of my boyfriend’s simply because KISSING feels good. We kissed because what kissing led to, felt good.
When I think about this subject I remember a time where kissing for fun went right out the window. When I was about 16, I went to my second Prom. A boy that I had known since elementary school who attended a different high school invited me, so I obliged. After dancing all night, and consequently having sex with my prom date (clichè I know) I decided to head back upstairs. Upon my exit I leaned in to plant a sweet kiss on my date, and when I did he looked at me like I was a complete psychopath. After this, I don’t believe I ever kissed for fun again. Traumatizing events like these, whether you remember them or not, can put a damper on your current relationship and make it hard for you to enjoy certain aspects of it.
Now, I’m relearning and understanding what it’s like to be kissed with love again. So kiss each other and refrain from having sex. You will most likely be surprised by the results. After a few hot make out sessions once sex finally does peer its lovely head, it’ll be a lot hotter and all of that built up sexual tension can be released and it is quite spectacular.
So in closing,
Being in a monogamous relationship can be a beautiful thing, but it is constant, day-to-day work. It’s not easy, but when you’ve found that person you can truly be yourself with, and trust completely, it’s worth it to try! Gives these tips a shot, and do it wholeheartedly. If they don’t work, maybe it’s time to seek outside help. But I’m thinking they will at least reignite that bedroom flame! Are there any tips that you and your long time love use to stay connected? Weigh in below!