Is There Any Romance in Your Romance?
~ 2 min read
Couples often tell us that they have lost the magical feeling they once knew in their relationship. They want to reclaim the romantic charge that they once shared during the early days of their relationship.
Most of us will recall those early years as emotionally challenging and spiritually draining but full of tremendous personal and romantic rewards. In the beginning we made a lot of mistakes, but our relationship was thrilling and alive.
In assessing the state of their relationship, some couples have reservations about whether or not their relationship really needs help at all. Others have decided that help is indeed needed, but they are unsure exactly how much work they will need to put in to their hurting relationship. The first necessity for analyzing the state of your coupleship requires that you examine whether or not your romance has romance.
Here are some common challenges that can blindside partners who are trying to accurately analyze the state of their romance:
- Many couples are prevented from recognizing their lack of true intimacy because they view the frequency of their sexual encounters as proof and symbolism of a healthy romance. These couples are mistaken. Many couples have come to us for help with a relationship that was devastated by betrayal in which both partners would have sworn that a romantic or sexual betrayal would not be possible – given the frequency of their shared sexual encounters. We have found that regular sex is no more an insurance against romantic infidelity than infrequent sexual intimacy is a predictor of it. Neither is true.
- Other couples are prevented from acknowledging that their romantic relationship is lacking romance because they are afraid of the implications of this kind of admission. It is as if the relationship will be cursed or doomed to failure if a lack of intimacy is discussed. The truth is, that acknowledging that there is a lack of emotional intimacy does not mean that the love has died any more than frequent sex in a relationship symbolizes a healthy romance (see bullet #1!). Once again, neither is true.
- Lastly, unhappy does not mean divorce. Unhappy is merely an indicator light suggesting that a romantic tune-up in in order. You do not need to change the engine each time your indicator light goes on!
It is ok to admit that your relationship is hurting. Admitting this truth will be the first step towards your healing. Do not allow your concerns to convince you that love has died, it is not necessarily so. It is ok to hold on to hope that your relationship can and will recover if you are willing to go to great lengths to put the romance back into your romance.
A romance that is nurtured will bear the fruit of love. We encourage you to examine the unresolved conflicts the relationship has endured or the challenges it is currently facing with an eye toward rebuilding the magic in your romance. We would love to hear from you about the strategies you and your partner have used to GET ROMANCE. You can CLICK HERE to leave a comment.
This article was written by John & Elaine Leadem, senior supervisors of the Leadem Counseling & Consulting offices in Toms River, NJ and East Brunswick, NJ. The content of this article is based on their upcoming publication titled “A Decision to Be IN Love” (Leadem & Leadem, 2014).
In this next publication John and Elaine address the challenges associated with establishing or rebuilding romantic health and provide valuable tools for building romantic bonds.
This specific article is based on the chapter titled “GOT ROMANCE?”
About John and Elaine LeademJohn and Elaine Leadem are licensed clinical social workers whose combined investment in the field of addiction treatment spans more than sixty years. Their commitment to helping recovering families has provided the core inspiration for the development of a "A Decision to Be IN Love"© which has helped many couples move from the traditional parallel model of recovery to strong united core support group. They are both certified Sex Addiction Therapist and have co-developed a model for treating couples during the crisis stage of recovery. In addition to being the co-directors of Leadem Counseling & Consulting Services, Elaine and John are seasoned therapeutic retreat leaders in working with recovering couples. As a team they have thus far co-authored three books:
Leadem, J. (2014). Is There Any Romance in Your Romance?. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 4, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/couples/2014/06/is-there-any-romance-in-your-romance/