1. Complacency: Every relationship is a work-in-progress. It requires constant labour, designing and moulding. What usually goes (possibly) wrong is when laziness invades. And one may begin to think that it’s there, it’s available, andit’s not going to end or get over. FYI, it does get over. Relationships too expire, if not kept fit, strong and free of lethargy. Complacency, therefore, is the commonest contaminant in a relationship.
Forgetting that you have a life with your wife, poring over work in the office, or going out to have your customary glass of whiskey every day with your group of friends without paying heed to spending some private time with your spouse may seem regular parts of domesticity, but that’s how complacency begins, that’s how dissatisfaction sets in.
2. Performance Pressure: This adulterant is not just restricted to sexual competence. In the times we live in, everything about our lives is about performance and targets. We constantly lose our original and authentic self. We constantly strive on Facebook or on Instagram to be liked by people, to be validated and authenticated by them. It’s as if we must become a ‘certain someone’ if we are to be accepted and loved. This tendency may very well spread into a relationship and our presence in that relationship may merely become a way of performance, where we are clearly not ourselves. In a long-term relationship, this invariably needs to go. Try to be as original, authentic and absolute as possible in front of a partner with whom you might consider spending your life.
Related reading: No sex, please, we’re married
3. Out of the Body Experiences: Do you constantly find yourself outside the body, judging yourself and beating yourself up for not looking the way you’re supposed to look? Well, it’s time for those anxieties to leave! In a long-term relationship, you can’t afford to be outside your body and wondering how you look.
You need to come back to your body and start accepting that even though you may look like a broom in the morning when you wake up, it’s okay to show your face and let yourself be kissed. Body image issues are too lame for an LTR to survive!
4. Doubtful Behaviour: It takes time to have the kind of trust that would allow a relationship to flourish. It’s easier for love to come by, but trust may take its own time. But if you find yourself constantly wondering: Which friend did he go out with tonight? Is he really going to a house party or a night club, (I heard music when he called – maybe he’s lying, maybe he’s somewhere else)? Did she directly go home from my place? Why did she leave early today? She recoiled when I touched her phone, maybe there was a WhatsApp message that she didn’t want me to see? early in a relationship and don’t stop, then maybe it’s time to talk it out as honestly as possible and tell your partner how best you’d like to resolve it.
5. Utopian Ideas of Romance: Sex may fade. Love too may fade. What will not fade is company. We give ourselves to ideas of how our relationships will look in the future and we keep harping on the amount of love we feel from our partners, and how much we are capable of giving. Whether the sex is great or not, or whether it’s going to be that great five years down the line. Of course, love and sex are integral parts of being in a relationship. They bring compatibility. But that’s not what will let you and your partner survive in a long-term relationship. Companionship is the only thing that survives and helps two people either to remain under one roof or within the choice and commitment to be together.
Related reading: Are Indians ignorant about their bodies and intimacy?
6. Instant Gratification: This is again a byproduct of the times we live in. Replying to a WhatsApp message instantly, or seeing the blue tick and writhing in anxiety when the reply doesn’t come, the desire to be constantly connected, expecting a ‘love you’ at the end of each phone call, or getting upset when no ‘kiss’ emoticon appears in a text message – all of these need to be done away with if you plan to settle down in a long-term relationship. Such expectations are absolutely inconsequential, and they only make you insecure and rob both of you of your personal space.