Relationships

Dating Again

By Melessa

I was going to do a cute little Halloween craft post, but I kept thinking about this subject more.

This post is for those in a relationship, whether you’re younger or older, whether you’ve been dating forever or married for a while.

We all know couples that break up or get a divorce after 5, 7, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 years of being together, often when on the surface things seemed to be going well.  I know that every relationship is unique, and that as outside observers, we never have all the information.  Each couple has their own reasons.  It’s common to hear things like, “We have nothing to talk about,” “I’m not attracted to you anymore,” or “You’ve changed.”  But sometimes we may see a breakup and wonder if there was anything they could have done to save their relationship.

Before I share something that helped me save my own marriage, let me say that no one should feel like they need to stay in an abusive relationship (be it mental, physical, verbal, or emotional). So, if we take those awful situations out of the equation, what can we do when we are struggling to keep that flame burning? Whether it has burned out recently or things have been cool for a long time, how can we mend relationships?

I talked to a couple of therapists, and they both said the vast majority of divorces were due to lack of interest in each other, money, lack of sex, no attraction, partners wanting different things, having different goals… you get the idea.

This is a real issue.  All we hear about now is “treat yourself, be good to yourself, you deserve to be happy, you deserve more,” but do we also think of our partners?  Is there give and take?  Are we willing to share?  If we have kids, are we not able to be more flexible and accommodating to them?  Do we love our partners as much as our kids?  Do we love them more?  Should we love them more??

So, a few months ago I received a call from a friend who had been divorced for a year and a half and was ready to start dating again.  He asked that I give him a makeover and get him ready for the dating market.  So I did.  We talked about his diet, weight loss, an exercise routine, a new hair cut, brightening teeth, cleaner skin, outfits, all the way down to his fingernails!

After I styled him up, I thought to myself, “If I were going to leave my husband now, what would I do differently to make myself more attractive and feel better about myself?  How would I change my personality and the way I speak to others?  Would I be more aware of my mistakes and weaknesses and try hard not to repeat them?”  I thought about those questions and decided to take action.

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So, my hubby and I have been doing this for 6 months now.  And it’s been amazing.  We are each putting our best foot forward.  We lost weight, eat healthier, dress better for each other, and help each other out more.  And you know what?  I feel sexier, healthier, and sooo much happier.

We are making a conscious effort to date each other.  It’s made us so much stronger as a couple and an awesome example for our kids who watch and pay attention to how we feel!

Let’s do this in our relationships NOW.  This second.  We need to date our partners all the time. Right?

So, Friday night is almost here.  Get gussied up and go on a date.  Remember, it doesn’t matter what age you are.  Just do it!!

Maybe some of you folks are already doing this. We want to know your relationship tricks in the comments below! So spill it. 🙂  We want to hear from you!!

 

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17 Comments

  • Reply
    Natalie Douglass
    October 20, 2016 at 10:47 am

    This year was the first year I have ever stuck to my New Year’s resolution. It involved weight loss and an exercise routine. I am going on 11 months and finally feel like “myself.” With that said, I think that because I am finally comfortable with myself, I feel more confident and happy around my husband. I hated feeling sluggish and overweight. I didn’t like looking in the mirror. Now, it nice to get dressed up, go out, and enjoy each other.

    • Reply
      Laura
      October 20, 2016 at 1:22 pm

      Natalie, that’s fantastic! I know exactly what you mean about feeling like yourself. It’s an empowering feeling. And the fact that your self-image has strengthened your marriage is a wonderful perk!

  • Reply
    Monsieur Pantalons Intelligents
    October 20, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    All too often I allow life to get crazy, albeit filled with good things, but perhaps not the best things. It is heartbreaking to see relationships dwindle after many years. Such a great reminder that family is always top priority, especially our spouses, and that marriage is an active process that needs continual attention. Great article, thank you.

    • Reply
      Laura
      October 20, 2016 at 2:33 pm

      It’s so easy to overlook our spouses. They do need more attention!

  • Reply
    Sarah Hogan
    October 20, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    I love the part where you talk about marriage is about loving the OTHER person. I feel like I’ve come across a lot of media lately that sends the message that everything is about YOU. If you have “fallen out of love” it must be nature telling you to get out and I just know that these aren’t true paths to happiness! True happiness comes from hard work and accomplishment which can totally be applied to a marriage or dating relationship. Anyway, I could go on and on 😉 Thanks for the great reminder to date my husband, Melessa. Not to mention an excuse to go shopping!! yay!!! 🙂

    • Reply
      Laura
      October 20, 2016 at 2:02 pm

      Ha! Maybe you can go on a shopping date WITH your husband. I’m sure he’d love that. 😉

  • Reply
    Nate
    October 20, 2016 at 2:06 pm

    Love is spelled T-I-M-E. Putting time and thought into dating my spouse again (after quite a while of allowing our lives to fill up with other things) has been amazing! We both feel better than we have in years.

    • Reply
      Laura
      October 20, 2016 at 2:08 pm

      Nate, you and Melessa are such great examples. Marriage is hard work. But you have proven that when you consciously choose to work together, the work part is overshadowed by the fun part. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Jana Hogan
    October 20, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    This post was wonderful! I’m really grateful for your candor. Being honest about these subjects is a gift to your audience! My husband is by far the best example of apologizing and swallowing pride. (Even though half the time I’m the one who should apologize!) This makes me want to be more gentle and loving. His example of putting US first is so powerful and romantic.

  • Reply
    Karla
    October 20, 2016 at 3:37 pm

    Sometimes it is hard to find a babysitter so when we can’t get out, Mike and I put the kids to bed and one of us picks up take out and we bring it home to enjoy together. Sometimes we rent a movie as well:-) We have enjoyed this so much that a lot of times we prefer to do it rather than get out. I remind myself that in this season of our life, our home dates are perfect. Of course, some nights I feel like getting out of the house for a date is what I need as well:-)

  • Reply
    Melessa
    October 20, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    I really appreciate the support I get from Nate and Laura adjusting and editing my writing:). Many thanks!!

  • Reply
    Allison Teasdale
    October 20, 2016 at 10:43 pm

    I love this! So thought provoking… I never really thought about “dating your husband/wife”. Ill need to remember this advice for when I’m married 😉

  • Reply
    Karen B
    October 21, 2016 at 1:54 am

    So much great advice here! I read it to my husband, he laughed and said he is going to go work out… not sure the message sunk in. Well it was least a 3 min conversation 😉

  • Reply
    Martha
    October 21, 2016 at 2:07 am

    Love it, life can be extremely busy so we sadly forget how important is to simply date and remembered the begin of our story

  • Reply
    Bart
    October 21, 2016 at 2:41 am

    Thanks for the reminder to be more involved in what my spouses needs are and be emotionally present. With smart phones and other distractions it’s easy to share the same space as my wife but not be engaged. Dating is a good way to dedicate that time.

    Last year I wanted to do something active with my wife. In the past I’ve played sports or gone running. None of the things interested her. She said that she wanted to try Zumba because she like dancing. We started going to a Zumba class together. Although it isn’t my first choice to stay active I like to support my spouse, and I have come to enjoy it a lot over time as well.

  • Reply
    Denise
    October 21, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    Such an uplifting and positive article, thank you, Melessa. One is never too old to work on these things (that is, thinking of Mike and me!)

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    October 22, 2016 at 9:03 pm

    Good job “MA”…I am proud of you!!

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