We live in dangerous times when it comes to our relationships because our society is organized around individualism, disconnection, productivity and consumption rather than connection and relatedness. While we are in search of achievement for ourselves and for our children, we cannot forgo the importance of love and connection in our lives.
I often meet couples who dream of recapturing the quality of togetherness they experienced while dating. These people yearn to feel close again. Yet when they talk about the lifestyle they have adopted, the way they resolve conflict and the way they support each other during tough times, their actions point to distance and disconnection.
Couples struggle. They know that it is difficult to maintain the intensity of their early romantic love. After many years in a relationship, it rarely feels the same as the first year of a new love. Yet people keep trying to recapture those intense and pleasurable feelings and become disappointed and disillusioned when they can’t.
Many couples come to work with me when they are so distant from each other that they have lost hope and have misplaced, if not lost, love. They often believe that it would be easier and even more fun to start with someone new. That could be true! But the danger is that unless they learn how to avoid creating an emotional gap with their partner, they may fall back into old habits once the new relationship becomes old.
Romance is exciting. Both young and mature relationships should aim to have romantic moments. The most important thing couples need to remain strong is the feeling of being connected to one another. Maintaining emotional connectedness is not something that most of us have learned.
Working with a professional who understands the value of connectedness and of rebuilding emotional intimacy in a couple is very important as they attempt to revive a relationship. Once the connection bridge is rebuilt, conflicts and problems become easier to overcome.