You know you are drifting apart in a relationship when the fairy tale first days seem like a thing of the past. The mushiness, the untimed phone calls, late night chai-pakodas – all seem like a distant dream. If you and your partner are reminiscing the old days (worse if you aren’t), chances are you’re going through a rough time in the relationship. The memories of the fairy tale first days, or, as we know it – the honeymoon phase- are all we have left. Feeling disconnected from each other, being out with friends more than being with each other are just a few signs that you are drifting apart in the relationship.
What Does It Mean To Be Drifting Apart In The Relationship?
Like soda bottles fizzles out after the cap is opened? Like that.
Think of your relationship as a bottle of Coke. While capped and unopened, the fizz is intact. The fizz is the wholesomeness of the relationship.
Drifting apart in a relationship happens when you do not reconnect with your partner. You no longer share the gory details of a colleague getting fired or no longer feel the need to hug or touch each other. You do not make eye contact or make date nights happen. You sort of just get into your jammies and hit the bed, with the occasional “What do you want for dinner?” . These are some subtle signs that indicate you are growing apart in your marriage.
The key is to not letting the drift get the better of you. Every relationship stalls at some point. Every long-term relationship gets to a point when you do not text as much, don’t spend time together, or take weekend trips together anymore. It’s not like you don’t love each other.
You’re sort of just hanging there, taking the relationship for granted and not willing to bring the fizz back in the relationship.
This is the time that makes or breaks couples.
What do you do when you feel you are drifting apart from your partner? You cannot force them to sit down with you to address the issue in the relationship.
But here are a few things you can do to make things better.
10 Things To Do When You Are Drifting Apart In Your Relationship
1. Start with the touch
If you were the kind of couple who held hands at the mall, chances are you have noticed that your relationship has drifted when you don’t hold hands anymore. The limited touch is scary because you were always the one to like it when she held your hands while crossing a busy street. Start with an occasional touch. Not the grab-her-by-her-ass kind of a touch, more passionate, less anatomical. A simple pat on the arm, a short hug before leaving for work can work wonders. Humans are built to feel connection in a touch and it is a sure way to again reconnect with your partner.
Related reading: Our marriage wasn’t loveless, just sexless
2. Take the first step
You can start to feel the drift in the relationship when you are there with each other but not really there. You might be busy with your phones and except the occasional exchange of information, you have nothing to talk about. So, take the first step. Instead of burying your heads in your phones or laptops, start the conversation about how you feel about not being that much connected anymore. If your partner is emotionally still invested in the relationship, they would not avoid the conversation. Let your gadgets not pull you away from each other.
3. Do not play the blame game
It’s easy to blame each other for the rut in the relationship. “You work too much”, “You spend more time with your friends”, “You barely acknowledge me anymore”. Replace the yous with us. Instead of placing blame on each other, try talking about solutions. You are not there to figure out who is responsible for the drifting apart scene. You are still with each other to get yourselves out of the rut you are in. Work towards it, not against each other.
Related reading: I blamed my husband for a petty issue. And I admit it!
4. Bring back the spark
Bring back the chai-pakodas at midnight. Or anything equivalent to chai pakodas. If midnight movies were your thing once, try doing that once a month. If role playing was your thing back then, surprise her with a sub-dom variation of cosplay. Not all your efforts might be well received, but at least it shows you are putting an effort. If your partner too wants to work towards drifting back to you, they will appreciate the effort. It opens up avenues to talk about what’s going wrong in the relationship.
5. Get your mood right
It’s okay to feel disconnected from your partner but if your mood is rotten because of it, your partner will pick up on it too. Instead of sulking in a different room, find ways to better your mood. If you are bit of an emotional person, the drifting apart in the relationship might make you anxious, sad and sometimes angry. Do not sit on it. Do not lash out on your partner. Nothing good would come out of it. Keep the complaints to a minimum. The key is to show the relationship that has turned sour is not what this relationship is all about. Think of happy days and show your partner the relationship can still get better than before.
6. Start a conversation
If she was the kind to text you during work hours (and you liked it) but doesn’t do it anymore, leave her a kind text. “I liked how we texted even while working. I miss it”. If you are both thinking about the same thing, it might be the start of working on the relationship. However, do not be clingy.
Related reading: How to make up after a fight
7. Treat your relationship like its brand new
Remember how much close attention you paid when you just started going out? Treat your relationship like that right now. Set out to re-woo your partner. If necessary, tell them you are out to re-seduce her again. It might seem a little odd at first, but it might help. Bring that honeymoon phase back.
8. Settle your priorities
While you are drifting apart in the relationship, you start looking for distractions elsewhere. That doesn’t necessarily mean you are cheating on your partner. You might go out with your friends too many nights in a row. Or bring work back home. If your relationship is drifting part, time to pull all stops to anyone beside your partner. Make each other your priorities. Even if that means cooking together on a Friday night. Let them know they are your top priority.
9. Revisit old places
Are there specific places you visited at the start of the relationship? Probably the cafe behind your college where you both talked about your feelings for the first time? Suggest going there. Did you first make out in a cemetery? Try going there again (leave the make-out part out though). While drifting apart in a relationship, you should reminisce about what got you together in the first place. Visiting the same places might jolt you back to the good times you have had and that getting back those times is possible.
Related reading: The good old desi ways to rekindle romance with your spouse
10. Make love, don’t just have sex
In a relationship stuck in reverse, or in a ditch, sex becomes more of a stress relief or a momentary revival of connection. But that rarely lasts. Don’t just have sex. Make love to each other. Talk about what you liked during the lovemaking session and what else would you like to do. Affection and passion play huge roles in bringing you closer in a relationship that’s drifting apart so cuddle and communicate afterwards.
Drifting apart in a relationship does not mean the end of the relationship. Know it’s temporary but treat it with a permanent solution. The rut might appear later in the relationship (which is common) but at least you’ll be equipped to deal with it.