5 Ways To Save A Failing Relationship

I’m no expert, that’s for sure. I have however seen it all a million times before. On paper the perfect couple, you look good together, you live together, you’ve known each other for a long time, there’s a healthy mutual respect and attraction, but ultimately the spark has very much gone. Ideally if your relationship is failing you want to act sooner rather than later, but of course only save a relationship if it’s truly worth saving. With just a little bit of effort, however, your relationship could be salvaged easier than you thought possible.

1. Remember why you got together in the first place – This is easily the best time in a relationship, that indescribable buzz when you first meet, you like them and they like you back. It’s a special feeling almost impossible to recreate, but what you can do is reminisce (in a happy way of course). Revisit those old places where you shared your first date, your first kiss and relive stories of how and more importantly, why, you fell in love.

2. Never underestimate the power of ‘date night’ – Couples are often guilty of simply not making enough time for one another. Whether it’s work, friends or family, ‘life’ all too often gets in the way – which as many of us know can be detrimental to even the closest of relationships. Try and make the effort to have even just one date night a month, a night for just the two of you and no one else. Also, be picky with your location choices, don’t just go to the same old pub you venture to every Sunday afternoon. Mix it up and even try doing something completely different month by month.

3. Talk – You’d be surprised at how many couples are guilty of horrendous communication – no matter how long they’ve known each other. It’s bizarre just how bad most of us are at having a simple honest conversation with one another – perhaps we’re terrified of what we might hear? Generally though it’s so important that as a couple you’re both on the same wavelength. Kids, career, marriage…you need to know where one another’s head is at, otherwise you might just be engaging in one big time-wasting exercise. However, never fear ‘the talk’, it might turn out to be the weight off your shoulders you so desperately needed.

4. Invest in yourself – In an ideal world your partner will love you no matter what, but that’s no excuse for being lazy or letting yourself go. Life isn’t all about being the fittest or the best looking but you should at least try to make the most of yourself. The aim is that you feel good and if you can accomplish that as individuals then there’s a pretty good chance you’ll also feel happier together as well.

5. Never take your partner for granted – Often the one overwhelming feeling that sparks and even reaffirms a break-up. Sometimes the longer a relationship lasts the more we take each other for granted. My advice, take just one moment to really think about how grateful you are for everything they do for you and if you’re feeling really brave, tell them!

So there you have it, 5 key points that could save you from returning to ‘singledom’. Relationships are never straightforward, they require time, effort and compromise something I often found out the hard way. No two relationships are exactly the same so adapt my advice in a way that suits you and you won’t go far wrong. Good luck!

Be Careful Who You Sleep With

We’ve all had dalliances we’ve regretted and usually for very different reasons. Last week I had the pleasure of catching up with an old friend, Alice, who was back in town visiting from her new Barcelona home (jealous much). Naturally we got reminiscing about some of our old shenanigans from back when we were just a pair of emo kids living off KFC buckets, super noodles and Green Day.

At the time I was living in a ridiculously expensive flat that I couldn’t afford, I had no job, no money and even less furniture. I’d moved into the flat with a friend who had equally little money but a large inheritance with which he had agreed to fund us both for a couple of months until we found jobs. That agreement turned sour all too quickly when he blew all the money on turning his bedroom into an Ikea showroom to impress his new girlfriend (the things we do for love). Gradually the situation worsened and I came home one day to find he had moved out, I was heartbroken, no I wasn’t really it was quite the relief actually. I decided in the following days that before I moved out I would throw one last party.

I didn’t throw parties that often but when I did, I made sure it lived long in the memory. I turned the living room into a dance floor and later a wrestling ring, my friends and I took turns at both crowd-surfing and then later throwing each other across the room (oh to be 18 again). The next morning I woke up in my bedroom to find my plain white wall had been turned into a surprsingly detailed comic strip with nothing but a permanent marker. Alice waltzed in surprisingly fresh-faced telling me of two confessions she had to make. Firstly, my wall. Secondly, “Paul, I slept with your friend Ben”. If there was one person I would have reccomended she don’t sleep with, it was Ben. She hadn’t known, but Ben was engaged. They were both mortified, as it turns out bumping into one another in the bathroom had quickly turned into bumping uglies.

Over the coming weeks Ben and his fiance broke off their engagement after he reluctantly confessed. Then one night myself and Alice found ourselves at another party where I spotted a familiar face, it was a young guy who had been looking over at me quite sheepishly. I went over to him, patted him on the back and said “I’m sorry about Ben” before unintentionally leaving him alone with Alice. The young guy asked Alice, “so how do you know Ben?” Alice very casually replied “oh, I slept with him at Paul’s party, how do you know him?” After a long pause he replied, “he was engaged to my sister but he slept with someone else.”

To my surprise they both laughed it off (eventually), it helped that Alice wasn’t malicious in any way and hadn’t known of Ben’s impending wedding. That wasn’t the only story we reminisced about last week, but it was certainly the most memorable. Lessons learnt all around I guess.

PTB