The statistics remain grim: one in every two marriages continue to end in divorce. The speculation is that knowing these figures, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmesagreed to a very specific prenuptial agreement. Maybe that’s why TomKat was able to come to a divorce agreement so quickly. But given that you likely had other things on your mind before the wedding, let’s turn the tables on the celebrities and give our attention to preserving our own intimate relationships.
If you’re a Sandwiched Boomer your energies may often be sapped by your responsibilities to career, growing kids and aging parents – so reconnecting with your partner may take second place. Here are some more tips to reaffirm that intimate relationship and make yourselves the stars of your own romantic comedy:
Talk. Often. And make it real communication as you open up and honestly share your needs and desires. Use your active listening skills and send I-messages without criticizing your partner. You’ll be building a strong foundation of trust and caring as you do.
Be willing to apologize. When you’ve made an error, you don’t have to be defensive about it. Take personal responsibility for your bad behavior and be genuine when you say, I’m sorry.
Work hard to forgive. Remind yourself that everyone makes mistakes. Your partner may have done something that ended up hurting you without meaning to. When you let go of anger and resentment, it leads to a more positive attitude for both of you.
Fight fair. Provide a safe environment as you both avoid threatening behavior like name-calling and blaming your partner’s character or personality. Be empathic and look at the issue from your partner’s perspective. That makes it easier to cooperate, look for solutions and reconcile.
Resolve hot button issues or put them to rest. Use conflict resolution to reduce the stress between you so you can be more flexible and work towards a compromise. If necessary, allow yourselves to ‘agree to disagree’ on certain topics and then take them off the table.
Recall why you fell in love. Remember and focus on your partner’s positive qualities. Compliment your partner freely and let him or her know how much you care. Bring back the romance in your relationship and create real intimacy.
When you invest in your partnership, your behavior will reflect this deep commitment. You’ll make time for your relationship just as you would for any valuable asset. And you’ll reap valuable dividends in well-being that won’t be taxed no matter what changes occur in the codes.