Running out of the things to talk about in your relationship may seem like a strange fear to have. When you've been with someone forever, you know them inside and out, and you see them pretty much every day, what else is there to talk about? While it may not be as tragic as cheating or as bad as falling out of love completely, it can still cause you some concern. But according to relationship experts,
running out of things to talk about with your long-term partner is totally common. The best part is, there are effective ways to keep things fresh when you do eventually run out of things to say.
"I think people put too much pressure on their partners to deliver every single ounce of support and entertainment," Noelle Cordeaux, relationship coach and CEO of
JRNI, tells Bustle. "Humans are [social] creatures and only in recent years has such a hefty social burden gone to the primary relationship. It's OK to just live in the moment. Sometimes that means that there just isn't anything to talk about."
In other words, it's not as big of
a relationship problem as you probably think. It only ever becomes a problem if running out of things to say to each other stems from boredom. But if you know you're both still in love and the only thing really lacking is good conversation, have no fear. Here are some effective hacks to keep things fresh when you've run out of things to talk about, according to experts.
Find New Shared Interests To Partake In Together
shared interests and hobbies are a great way to keep things fresh, Cordeaux says. Do you both like to hike? Then discover some new trails together. Do you love to cook? Then tackle a crazy-difficult recipe together in the middle of a weekend afternoon. You can even find a new show to binge watch together. "Experiences that are shared are the building blocks of connection," she says. "Learning and exploring new aspects of life builds capacity for teamwork." Besides that, doing new things together builds memories, which you can keep talking about.
As Cordeaux says, you shouldn't rely on your partner to be your source of entertainment. That's putting a lot of pressure on one person. "If you feel that you don't have enough to talk about with your partner, work on diversifying your activities and interests and see what happens," she says. One of her suggests includes calling your mom, or talk to your friends, neighbors, or co-workers. You can even catch up with an old friend you found on social media. If your partner is the only person you really have meaningful conversations with everyday, shake it up. That way you can have something to bring up whenever you don't have anything to else to say.
Get Together With A Group Of Friends
If you’re struggling to come up with things to say, relationship coach,
Jenna Ponaman, CPC, tells Bustle to try getting together with a group of friends. "Not only does it take the pressure off of the two of you to start a conversation with each other, but having people around you will give you something to talk about afterwards," she says.
Ask Silly And Random Questions You've Always Wanted To Ask
"Ask a question that you haven’t asked your partner before," Coach
Andi LaBrune, Relationship Expert & Mentor, tells Bustle. Make them "silly, but thought-provoking." For example, "How did you feel the first time I agreed to go out with you," or "Try to guess what’s on my bucket list that I would only want to do with you."
Just be sure to stay away from "conversation killers" like past relationships, she says. There's a time and place for that. When you're attempting to bridge a communication gap in your relationship, awkward conversation topics may have the opposite effect. So just be sure to keep your questions light, fun, and playful.
If you want to keep things fresh, keep talking about your dreams for the future together. "When you find yourself in the same old routine, you tend to forget your first ‘flutter-my-butterfly-dreams’ you had together," LaBrune says. So make it a point to revisit your dreams together and see if it’s something you still both want. Keep it light-hearted, friendly, and loving, she says, especially if you still desire to fulfill them. If you've been wanting to go on a trip together, talk about how excited you are to make it happen. If you've been fantasizing about kids together, talk about possible names. If you want to just talk about your date night for next weekend, that's OK too. "Nothing is too menial or insignificant if it matters to you and who you wish to experience it with," LaBrune says.
Communicate Through Your Love Languages
According to Dr. Gary Chapman, the author of
each person The 5 Love Languages, processes love and affection in different ways. "It can be the physical words we say to one another, but it can also simply be quality time, gift giving, acts of service, or physical touch," Ponaman says. "In fact, I can even tell you from personal experience that my relationship with my partner became more enriched when we spoke about less things." Maybe a lack of conversation in your relationship has nothing to do with major hidden issues. Sometimes figuring out your partner's love language and applying it can turn things around. According to Ponaman, getting clear with her partner on their love languages helped them better connect in ways a simple conversation couldn't. "Get intuitive with your partner's language," she says. "You’ll never run out of conversation after that."
Don't Overthink It, Just Be Willing To Talk About Anything
When you make the realization that you have nothing to talk about with your partner, the tendency is to overthink everything. According to LaBrune, you have nothing to worry about. "Running out of things to say is really an unjustified fear couples have," she says. If you're just sitting together in bed before you go to sleep, just start talking. Bring up something funny that happened to you that day. Share a piece of office gossip that you heard. "Next thing you know, you’re in a newfound chit-chat, all-night chatter frenzy," she says. "Just be willing to talk. If you aren’t willing to open up, share, and allow some vulnerability, the communication gap can widen beyond a bridge that’s able to cross."
It's scary to think you and your partner will hit that point in your relationship when you have absolutely nothing to say to each other. Even if you do get to that point, there's really nothing to worry about. If you both find simple ways to work at it, running out of things to say won't be a problem at all.