Articles

Rebuilding Romance in Your Marriage: Advice from a Christian Counselor

By Erik Mildes, MA, LMHC, Seattle Christian Counseling, PLLC

Image-17I realize that romance goes both ways. It’s not just about the man needing to provide an adequate level of romance to satisfy the woman. But for the purposes of this article, I am writing from the perspective of the woman who is looking for more romance than her husband is giving her. Please, women, don’t assume that romance is only the responsibility of the man, because it is not. Romance is a two-way street.  Does your husband define romance as a hug before sex? Or maybe he buys you flowers on Valentine’s Day and expects that to suffice as his romance quota for the year? Many men seem to have abbreviated ideas of what constitutes romance.  Abbreviated, that is, when compared to most women, who often find the intellectual and emotional aspects of romance more satisfying than sex itself. So, if you’ve never really enjoyed a romantically rich relationship with your husband, but wish you did, or you’ve lost the romance as the years and distractions have piled up, here are a few steps you can take to begin rebuilding the romance.

Educate Your Husband

Have you ever actually told your husband what romance means to you? Have you taught him how to make you feel most romantic? Does he understand that sex, for you, begins well before the actual act of intercourse? Sometimes we assume that our partner knows these things, when he really has no idea. This conversation allows for an intimacy between one another, revealing your desires and inviting him to provide for you in that way. While this is usually not the only step, it is often the most important first step in either building romance for the first time or for bringing romance back into the relationship.

Create Time

Time is perhaps the greatest facilitator and inhibitor to romance. Busy schedules roadblock romance every day of the week. Designating time for one another, however, gives romance a place to dig in and grow. I have a friend who is a minister. His days are continually upended with unscheduled visits from parishioners. Several years ago, after seeing plans with his wife go up in smoke every time someone in his church needed something, he began scheduling a weekly date with his wife. It was in his calendar, so he couldn’t miss it. A coffee date here, a lunch there. Not big events, but they made clear to his wife that she came first. Anticipation for the weekly dates grew. She was reassured in her understanding of his commitment to her, and this increased their sense of intimacy, before ever getting to the bedroom.

Be Different

Image-27When you first met your husband, you both brought your unique personalities to the relationship. You were who you are, and he was who he is. You found joy, excitement and passion in the exchanges between one another. But if it seems now like you have lost that sense of individuality, like you have drained your relationship of each other’s uniqueness, and have simply become a big glob of blandness, then it is time to be different again. It’s called Emotional Fusion, and simply means that both people have ceased being the individuals they were at the beginning of the marriage. The result is a withering away of the glue that connects the two of you – namely the individuality that attracted you to each other in the first place – and the impact can be devastating to a relationship, both emotionally and sexually. Romance definitely takes a big hit when two people are emotionally fused. The third key, then, to regaining a sense of romance in your relationship is to regain a sense of your individuality, and help him regain his. The result won’t be a parting of the ways, like two people deciding to go in different directions, but rather a re-connecting of two people who lost their individuality and uniqueness along the way.  It will spark a new sense of individuality, and a greater ability within each of you to be fully in relationship. A relationship, that is, defined by two distinctly unique people, sharing your daily lives with creativity, joy, uniqueness and passion.

Christian Marriage Counseling Can Help You Rebuild the Romance in Your Marriage

If you are struggling to recover the romance in your relationship, you may want to consider speaking to a trained Christian marriage counselor. Reach out to Millcreek Christian Counseling today to get started on the road to recovering the romance in your marriage. In the process, you just might regain yourself too.

Photos

From www.freedigitalphotos.net



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