Reviving an Old Friendship

Regaining the Spark in Your Marriage

The next of six articles focused on fulfillment in life talks about reviving an old friendship. In this article, we’ll be examining how we can best regain the spark in our most important “old” friendship, the one with our spouse. Relationships go through cycles and changes and that is very normal; no one expects to stay in the “honeymoon phase” of a relationship forever, but what are spouses to do when a piece of their relationship has become like an old friendship and they feel out of touch.

Taking Inventory

The article starts by suggesting that you examine why you and the friend first fell out of touch; did one of you move? Your interests changed? It became more and more difficult to find the time? Unfortunately, when you feel distanced from your spouse it can be more difficult to put your finger on exactly what is different. Every relationship is unique, so figuring out the special things that make yours tick can be a challenge. Start with retracing your steps, what were the circumstances around the last time you remember really enjoying time with your spouse; was it planned or spontaneous? Something normal and “everyday” or was it a vacation or a special night out? Remembering what worked in the past can give you clues on how to move forward.

Manage Expectations

A sudden change in your approach to the relationship or your behavior can be off-putting, even alarming to your spouse. Communication and managing expectations are both critical. If your surprise date night happens the same day your spouse had a bad day at work and got stuck in traffic you may need to be flexible. Springing “I want to talk about our relationship” onto your spouse can make your spouse feel sensitive or defensive. Just understand that making changes and breaking habits, while rewarding, involves some level of risk as well.

Availability & Honesty

Whether you are trying to simply have better conversations or surprise your spouse with a second honeymoon, be open, honest and ready to work for what you want. Investing in your relationship with your spouse can feel difficult and even scary, but a commitment to constantly improving your relationship will pay off in the end.