Stop blocking passion and romance by doing this...
This very word can bring up strong reactions in people.
It might bring up irritation because your partner expects you to be romantic and it's just not your thing. It may trigger sadness and regret at the kind of relationship you'd like to have, but don't. It may cause you to feel nostalgic for earlier times in your relationship when your partner swept you off your feet but that doesn't happen anymore.
If it seems to you that there is no romance in your love relationship or marriage, this could be a cause of bitterness within you and conflict between you and your mate.
Here's what you might be thinking...
“My partner is incapable of being romantic.”
“I'm not worthy of being romanced or treated the way I really want to be treated.”
“There is a lack of love and spark in my relationship.”
“We're too old and we've been together too long for romance.”
We maintain that none of these statements are completely true.
Even if you're with a guy who seems to be 100% clueless about what romance is and even if you're with a woman who keeps you at arm's length, these statements are most likely not accurate all (or any) of the time.
Everyone has the capacity to be romantic and loving. What that exactly means is going to vary and this is a key thing to remember.
Here are 4 reasons why it might seem like there is no romance in your relationship and what you can do about it...
#1: You and your partner are stuck.
If you feel stuck and in a passionless place in your relationship, you're probably not making it up. You've probably got real and legitimate reasons why you believe that there is no romance.
The thing to do when you feel stuck is to get curious. Stop looking for who is to blame and try to get clearer about why you feel stuck and what habits-- that you AND your partner have-- are contributing to this.
For example, it could be that you two have become entrenched in a routine that is very busy and leaves little time for connection and to be alone. This is particularly so for couples who have young children or even teenagers living at home.
The more you can figure out how you and your partner are stuck and the more you can get creative and make more time to really BE with one another, the easier it will be to bring back the romance.
#2: Resentment and/or anger are in the way.
There's no bigger passion killer than resentment and anger. Both build up and can be a dangerous pair. If you recognize either of these emotions dominant within you or in your relationship, trace it back to the source.
What events are you still holding onto? What conflicts remain unresolved?
Take steps to make peace with the past, to resolve divisive issues that linger between you and your partner and to live more fully in the present moment.
It's not going to encourage your partner to be more romantic when you are still angry about how badly he (or she) handled a past Valentine's Day, anniversary or other special occasion, for instance.
You might need to do this letting go of the past by yourself or in conversation with your partner. If you do need to communicate about your lingering anger, do so in a way that allows you both to be heard and to move forward-- together.
#3: Either or both of you are afraid to trust.
Another block to romance is mistrust. When you don't fully trust your partner (or yourself), you hold back. You aren't as open and intimate with your mate and this can be felt.
You might have good reason for holding back or mistrusting. It is important that you address your doubts and hesitations and get clear about whether they stem more from past experiences or from things going on now.
There simply isn't room for romance when the foundation of trust is shaky or nonexistent. Make a conscious effort to rebuild trust if it feels broken or missing and notice it when your partner follows through and keeps his or her word.
This will help you know that it's wise to trust and open yourself up again.
#4: You have different ideas of what romance and love are.
It happens all of the time. Both people in the relationship have completely different preferences and ideas of love and romance.
One might believe that he or she is expressing feelings of love while the other person doesn't see it.
While it's helpful to know how you want to be loved, try to be flexible too. Be willing to communicate to your partner what feels romantic to you, but don't go so far as to dictate or micro-manage a romantic experience that your mate might be trying to provide for you.
It can be a bit of a balancing act. Give information about what your preferences are AND invite yourself to appreciate the efforts that your partner is putting into loving you and making you feel special-- in his or her unique way.
Receive the love that's being offered to you...even if it comes in a slightly different “package” than you had in mind. This will open the door to even more romance to come.
Susie and Otto Collins are relationship coaches and authors who help couples communicate, connect and create the relationship they desire. Click here to get their free ebook, Passionate Heart-Lasting Love.