A perfect relationship with no rough times or hard moments is just like a unicorn — as lovely as that sounds, it doesn’t exist. Every relationship has to have its lows to have its highs. Heck, even Beyoncé and Jay Z have rough patches. Nobody is perfect, so therefore, no relationship is perfect. Even after all of the arguments, eye-rolls, and moments where you question everything, it’s those perfect kisses, amazing chemistry, respect for one another and deep love that will make it all OK, or at least, close to OK, at the end of the day.
Being a relationship expert who’s worked with couples in therapy, I know that each relationship will have moments that will make it or break it. It’s not always easy to come out on the other side of a rut. When you two are having days that turn into months of constant arguing, sometimes walking away sounds easier than fighting for the relationship. I’m not saying you should stay in a toxic partnership, but there’s something to be said for working hard with your significant other to make a happy and healthy relationship. It can’t be one-sided to get through a rocky road, you both have to want to make it better. But trust me, if you make it through, you’ll be closer and stronger than ever. Here are a few ways you can work to improve your relationship after some bumps in the road.
1. Take Some Space
Even taking a little bit of space can have a big effect on your relationship. When you love someone, it’s easy to want to see each other every day and spend all your free time with your other half. However, even the best of couples need time apart. Maintaining independence and alone time will allow for you to grow within yourselves and as a couple.
2. Confide In Someone
A friend or a loving family member can be the cheapest therapist you may ever find. Sometimes all you need is a glass of a wine and a nice venting session. Having someone who can listen to what you are going through and can offer you some helpful insight can make a huge difference.
3. Push The Refresh Button
Resentment and bitterness can be deadly in a relationship. Often, if you're holding onto past arguments and upset emotions, it’s likely you will burst one day. And the splatter will be all over your relationship. Things can get messy, so when they do, sometimes it’s OK to push the refresh button on your relationship.
4. Have More Sex
During a rough patch, having sex with your other half doesn’t always seem that enticing. However, it could be the thing you two need to feel closer and more connected. Hello, that’s what make-up sex was invented for. Through hard moments in a relationship, we tend to distance ourselves, which can be exhibited sexually, too. The more you distance yourself in this way, the harder it will be to for you two to come back together.
Getting into arguments and having silent treatments with each other can really make you miss the good old honeymoon stage days. The things that you once found so cute are now the things that are probably annoying you. So, rewind your relationship like you rewind your favorite episode of Real Housewives. Go on dates that you would go on in the very beginning. Do things that you somehow stopped doing as time went on. Rewind and refresh.
6. Do Something Nice
Even though you might be filled with resentment and frustration, sometimes you have to step up and be nice first. If you want to repair your relationship, somebody has got to make the move first. So put your pride down and make that gesture. Do something nice for your lover and see the positive impact it can have on your partnership.
7. Double Date
Seeing another couple and the way they interact can have a positive impact on your relationship. It's possible you will witness a truly happy and healthy couple and try to mimic things that they do to help your own relationship. Maybe they told you they go out on a date once a week and it starts making you realize you both need to do the same. Or maybe, you see that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side and cherish the partnership you are in.
Now just remember, rough times are ahead for any relationship, but it’s how you deal with it together that can carry you through anything.