When you are married, especially as a newlywed, it feels like your love can do no wrong. But the banalities of life slip in eventually, and you have to be prepared to face them. That means that you should have a sense of who you are ahead of who you are in your marriage.
Maintaining a sense of individuality in marriage only happens when you are able to have relationships outside the marriage, such as friendships or mentorships; an extramarital affair would not be appropriate, of course. Stereotypically, women are more inclined to enjoy time with their spouse if they have also spent time with friends and relatives on a regular basis. And men tend to depend more on a wife for a supportive type of relationship.
The argument for time apart? Well, birth rates increase after war veterans return home. And primates celebrate the return of the hunter to the group after a long absence. This can't just all be a coincidence! There is something to the idea that separateness can be good for relationships. Plus, if you foster close relationships with friends and family, you can have outside support during times when your spouse is emotionally unavailable to you, for whatever reason that may be.
How To Know You're Spending Too Much Time With Your Spouse
Couples who spend too much time together:
- Have less to talk about
- Have less intimacy
- Are rarely motivated to go out together
- Take each other for granted
- Don't get the opportunity to miss each other
If you find that you have nothing to talk about on your date night, use that moment to understand what the problem is. By shifting your perspective slightly, you can see your relationship in a new light, which can revive your spark.
After a couple of years of marriage, intimacy may come to a grinding halt. It's hard to maintain sexual interest in someone who is standing there every time you turn around. When your spouse becomes your sure thing, you can start taking them for granted, and the relationship can quickly go down the tubes when that happens.
Spending time apart promotes an appreciation for your marriage and each other. It means not losing yourself, your hobbies, and your friends, and that, in turn, leads to happier people who come together after being apart and form happy marriages. You're more attractive when you're leading a full life for yourself, after all.
Is it time for you and your spouse to start taking time apart? To start taking the opportunity to go out with friends and do things you enjoy separately? It could be. And if so, you'll surely enjoy the rewards that this time apart can bring. Of course, every relationship is different and should be treated as such, but you know what they say: Distance makes the heart grow fonder.