Things are always great in the beginning. You and your partner can’t get enough of each other. The sex is good. Recreation feels like a dream. And speaking of dreams, they seem to be aligned in all the most important places. Then some time goes by. Things aren’t quite as amazing as they appeared at the start. Your emotions begin to feel dulled out and you find yourself wondering whether you’re with the right person at all. Once solid, your relationship eventually takes a turn for the worse because you’ve tried building a bond on top of ideals that continually change. The foundation upon which your relationship is built means a lot, but so do the questions and conversations you have along the way.
Contrary to popular belief, love is not formed out of grand gestures and super romantic rendezvous. It’s constructed out of the tiny moments in our everyday rhythm – the notes in between. To make things stronger, you’ve got to learn how to read your partner’s sheet music like a compatible composer. After all, trying to strengthen your relationship using the unrealistic methods you learned from Hollywood isn’t a good idea, nor is reading a bunch of conflicting Self-Help books that tell you to completely change who you are. Love sparks through chemistry, so it’s your job to keep that chemistry alive and well so that it creates a symbiotic union between you and your intimate instrument.
Look, life isn’t a movie and your partner doesn’t come with a script. Nobody can tell you exactly how this will go, but what we can tell you is that open and honest communication has been proven to strengthen a relationship in more ways than you can shake a stick at. There are some incredible insights that can be found when you know which questions to ask (and which ones to avoid like the plague). You already know what it’s like to watch your love fall apart. Have you ever wondered what it felt like on the other side of the fence? Keep reading to find out ways to change the direction your relationship is going and strengthen it until it’s ironclad.
First things first, let’s try to approach this with a mature mindset because there are enough children playing with hearts already. It’s important to keep in mind that all relationships go through ups and downs. There are always going to be challenges associated with two completely different people trying to live a unified life. That’s just the way the cookie crumbles. However, you can still enjoy plenty of good times as long as you’re willing to work through the bad times with an open heart, a sound mind and an appreciation for your partner’s uniqueness. Remember, strong bonds don’t just happen. They’re the result of successfully navigating the trials and tribulations of everyday life. Don’t fuck up your chances because you’re looking at this the wrong way.
Great relationships are the ones that are continually improving – the ones that can handle changing alongside each partner’s growth in life. By understanding the basics of building trust and compatibility, you can strengthen your bond with a partner even when they’re going through trouble. Essentially, you’ve got to force yourself to move past the initial “butterflies in my stomach” phase and see your lover for who they truly are. And since this part of the process is vital for both people, a candid conversation has to take place eventually. So, what are you supposed to talk about and what’s the end game? That’s the fun part.
Building a strong foundation for your relationship requires customization on a very personal level. In other words, no two couples are exactly the same, so it’s okay if you don’t do things like the people next door. Still, there are some basic steps that any couple can follow to strengthen their foundation before attempting to conduct an intimate interview. Other sources might suggest jumping right in, but I think it’s crucial to lay some solid groundwork prior to prying. Relationships that are built on top of superficial ideals will not make it to the qualifying round anyway. So, going through this step is, in my opinion, the best way to determine whether the relationship you’re currently in is worth the effort or not. Passion may have led you there, but only a real bond will hold you together.
Here's how to create a legit connection to work with:
Your relationship is like a garden. A lot of time and attention is required for it to flourish. So, it only makes sense to invest in and nurture your bond throughout everyday life (and even when times get hectic). By making your boo a priority you establish precedence for the future and provide ample opportunities for both of you to bond. This gives you and your lover a chance to show off talents and work on shortcomings, plus it creates memories that can serve as reminders of your love and reference points for crumbling foundations.
It doesn’t matter how upset you are, it’s never okay to throw around derogatory remarks, belittling comments and insults. Having passion is one thing, but being a dick is something completely different. And don’t be a pussy either; stand up for yourself if your partner is acting a donkey but do it in a constructive way. In the meantime, don’t stonewall your lover with dramatic exits and silent treatments because those behaviors rip perfectly good foundations apart quicker than ignoring the problem altogether. By the way, playing the blame game is no-no as well unless, of course, you’re absolutely perfect and never make a mistake.
If you sit long enough you can probably come up with a fuck ton of issues you have with your current partner. Hell, even identical twins have fights from time to time, so what makes you think two totally inimitable individuals will agree on everything? On the other hand, you could sit for just as long and come up with all the reasons you love, admire and adore your bae. That’s almost always the better option when establishing and maintaining a good relationship foundations, especially if your qualms are with something as harmless as their innate personality traits or preferences. After all, you don’t have the best taste either and your book of fuckups is just as thick.
Seriously, let go of that compulsion to start fixing your partner. They’re not an automobile you can just take to the shop; they’re a human being with good reasons for being how they are. It’s your job to get to know that person and love them for what they can and can’t do – not use every waking moment trying to change it. In the meantime, understand that you can’t change anyone but yourself and neither can they. When you both get busy working on your own personal shortcomings instead of focusing on each other’s, a more enjoyable relationship with a stronger foundation is pretty much created out of thin air.
Knowing how to say you’re sorry is a very big deal in any relationship, romantic or not. We all have disagreements and misunderstandings but remaining angry over something small is a big mistake that can permanently damage your bond and change the way your partner feels about you. On the other hand, being able to forgive is just as important because it shows that you care no matter what happens, plus it proves that you realize your own faults and sets the stage for your forgiveness when it’s time. And while many assume forgiveness means giving permission for that person to hurt you again, that’s simply not the case. It only means moving on and giving your partner the benefit of the doubt that they’re trying to improve.
There’s no use trying to strengthen a relationship with a foundation that’s non-existent. That’s usually the state of affairs among couple’s who aren’t fully present for their beloved. So, what does full presence entail? Well, it involves not interrupting your boo when they’re trying to talk, not assuming you know what they’re about to say, and not ignoring them when something more interesting comes along. It requires asking leading questions and actually listening to the response without being a judgmental twat about what you hear. It’s a lot like the behavior you exhibit in an important job interview, only this time it’s with someone you care about and there’s likely some hot sex at the end.
Few things are more annoying than dealing with a partner who turns to badgering when there are unanswered questions afloat. And while you may have been that kind of person in the past, it’s never too late to change your tactics. The best way to encourage openness, honesty and commitment from your lover is to give them the space and respect you’d prefer if you were in the same boat. This is neither the time nor the place to be overly critical of your companion or of the speed at which they open up. Keep it loose to create a tight relationship – one where your babe can be real on their own time without the fear of rejection and ridicule.
Each and every one of us has a unique way that we give and receive love in a romantic relationship. Your way may not be the same as your partner’s way. In fact, chances are that it’s not similar as much as it’s complementary. Use that knowledge to your advantage. Keep in mind, however, that it’s impossible to benefit from your partner’s love language if you don’t know how to speak it. By now, you should probably know more than a few things that turn on your boo, but there could be a handful of favorites you’re missing. Pay close attention to how your lover reacts to certain stimuli and then give them more of what they seem to enjoy the most.
Bonds begin in one way and die in another. One of their causes of death is the absence of future plans. Think about it: Things can become incredibly dull and pointless when two people have no reason to be together, but strong, long-lasting relationships are almost always built upon an itinerary that involves enjoyable, enriching activities and experiences. And while you’re out filling up the calendar, try to include things that your partner has already expressed an interest in (you’ll need to “be present” for that information, by the way). Also, find stuff that requires interaction and/or produces tangible memories, keepsakes and stories for you both to reminisce upon later.
Nothing kills trust, romance and relationship strength faster than a lie. To make matters worse, it’s easier to break confidence than it is to build or rebuild it, so you’ve got be extremely careful about walking the fine line between being honest and being crude. Good bonds are created out of accountability, so don’t keep secrets no matter what’s going on. Always try to give partners a chance to process your truths and assimilate them into their opinion of you. This will provide you both with the opportunity to know things about one another that nobody else does, further strengthening your relationship and making the union ironclad. Just mean what you say and say what you mean. It’s that’s simple.
At no point should you or your partner expect anyone to be perfect, nor should either one of you assume that the other person’s execution of these tips will be flawless. It isn’t easy being an amazing lover. Indeed, rethinking the way you approach a relationship takes tons of energy and it’s a process that features many bumps in the road. However, as long as both people are willing to give it their best shot regardless of how difficult it gets, things will most likely turn out positively in the end. The key is to understand why strengthening a relationship is so important in the first place.
It’s hard to convince someone to begin working on their relationship when they feel as though everything is just fine the way it is. You can’t fix something that’s not broken, nor can you tinker with a project that’s controversial in your home. However, learning how to strengthen your bond is the best way to show someone you care, plus it comes with at least five different advantages that can drastically improve the quality of your love life.
So, if your partner is dead set on keeping things the way they are, maybe light a fire under their ass by mentioning one (or all) of the following perks:
Truth be told, there are probably about a thousand other advantages to being hooked up with someone you love but we don’t have that kind of time. If the benefits mentioned above aren’t enough to convince your lover that the relationship is worth working on, then it’s possible that nothing ever will. At this point, it’s a good idea to reassess the boundaries and expectations of your current relationship to determine whether it’s worth building upon or not. Hopefully it is, because being single isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
FACT: According to recent studies, people involved in a healthy relationship are generally happier than people who are not. Interestingly, single people suffer from an increased risk of anxiety and depression. However, it’s important to also point out that most folks were content before entering into their current relationship, which means they brought a lot of great qualities to the scene when they showed up in the picture.
They say communication is the key to a lasting relationship and they’re not entirely wrong. Granted, there are numerous other factors that contribute to the longevity and quality of a romantic union but having open and honest conversations about important matters can help solidify intimacy and fill in gaps without cutting corners or making you miss out on the awesomeness that your beloved offers. Ask the right questions with the right frame of mind and watch as your relationship goes from coal to diamonds. You know diamonds are forever but do you know why? Because they’re reinforced by nature itself - virtually unbreakable and equally as beautiful, especially when the right light is shone upon them.
If you don’t mind, I’d like to stop for a second to remind you and your partner of a few things before we proceed with the Qs and As. First of all, some of the questions will feel corny and awkward because they use language that’s not commonly associated with casual conversation. Moreover, some of the answers to those questions might be hard to swallow. I suggest thickening your skin beforehand so you don’t suffer the consequences of wearing your heart on your sleeve. Yes, the person sitting next to you means a lot but your feelings for them should not get in the way of openness and honesty. Don’t make me tell you twice.
Also, this might be a good time to clear your schedule a bit. Good question and answer sessions with a romantic partner can take several hours, if not longer. Hell, it may even take a couple of rounds, so don’t rush through it like it’s a post-dinner survey from your waitress or something. The candidness and sincerity you exhibit here will be reflected in how comfortable your partner feels about opening up, so let them be your mirror. In fact, your behaviors and responses could change their answers and/or switch the focus from your long-term problems to your less important temporary upsets. Be cool and get through this without a bunch of scars.
Meanwhile, start the conversation off casually and then, when you feel the time is right, pose the very first question: “Do you mind participating in a little F.A.Q. before we F.U.C.K.?” If their answer is yes, proceed. If their answer is no, give them time. The thought of saying something wrong may cause severe anxiety, and it’s always a good idea to think before you speak anyway. When you’re ready to go, here are the 20 most important inquiries to make (in no particular order):
Before I leave you to your own devices, I think it’s important to address the risk factors that can threaten all the hard work you’re about to put into your relationship. The following actions and behaviors basically undo everything good in your love life and cancel out the progress you make faster than you can make it. They’re relationship killers and they’re more common than you think. People are lured into popping their bubbles for this sort of nonsense and then the slow leak begins. After a while, a couple can begin feeling cold, distant or completely out of love because their foundation has been deflated. Yikes.
Don’t let the light go out on your love as soon as you establish it. Give your union every opportunity to flourish like the gorgeous garden that it is. Be mindful of these sneaky ways in which your relationship can become compromised even if it’s the strongest thing in the world:
Moral of the story: The likelihood of suffering a breakup is significantly minimized when you work on strengthening your relationship while trying your best to avoid the common pitfalls. Remember that nobody is perfect and there are bound to be disagreements when you’re spending large amounts of substantial time with another person. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you came from, or what your intentions are, learning how to work in a symbiotic fashion with your partner is the key to enjoying a lasting love and many years of happiness.
Blake Parker makes Ron Jeremy look like Mother Theresa. His honest take on allthings pertaining to pleasure and relationships has made him a household name that’s synonymous with sexuality. Blake’s unique perspective on toys and techniques prepares the mind and body for more than just an incredible orgasm. Hisentertaining sex toy reviews, buyer’s guides, and How-To articles inform consumers of what nobody else will say. His readers demolish emotional/physical strongholds, tear down social taboos, and become more comfortable in their own skin as he and his partner enlighten the world one sex toy at a time. Notoriety isn’t the goal with Blake; satisfaction is.