Learn to talk about “why”. There are good rows and bad rows but make no mistake – everybody argues. Ridiculing or humiliating each other is not a good idea, or a good omen. But if you can both talk honestly about what irritates or upsets you and why, you are more likely to understand each other better. It can feel easier to avoid being honest if we feel that could be hurtful, but it is only with honesty that trust is built, and trust is the essence of a good relationship. Many couples find their later years to be their happiest. To read the full article go to The Telegraph Relationship advice ‘
Set aside time without the children. Easier said than done, but important’ Forget trouble for a little while and laugh together. A good laugh is like good sex: spontaneous and uninhibited and an act that unites two beings as one. It’s worth going out of your way to have a good laugh, especially if things have been rocky. Go to a place where you used to laugh or where there’s a good chance of laughter. That moment when you exchange a look and end up laughing, often over a shared memory, is the best way to understand each other again. It can be pretty sexy in bed too – as long as you’re laughing together.
Shut up and listen. No matter how bad things are, give your partner a chance to speak. Given silence in which to speak or rant, they’ll say more than they meant to – even more than they knew they were thinking. It can be surprising and revealing and paves the way for honesty.
Invest in the relationship with your partner’s family. These relationships can be rocky. Keep yours smooth by remembering birthdays and anniversaries, by butting out of family disputes, and by never forcing your partner into the position of taking sides with you against their mother, father or siblings – those relationships go back a long way.
Don’t snoop. If you’re tempted to check your partner’s inbox or online history, stop…
‘Instead of “working” at your relationship, learn to “play”‘ it is through the mutual exploration of their imperfections, fears and anxieties that true connection occurs. It may sound counterintuitive but it’s true.
Learn to spend time alone. Developing a relationship with yourself, deepened by solitary pursuits, hobbies and taking time out from work and relationships, will pay huge dividends with your partner. You will come back to the relationship refreshed, more able to express your needs
Don’t be cruel. According to research, people who sneer, ridicule or talk down to their partner are on a fast track to relationship destruction. Those in successful relationships hardly ever speak to each other that way, even when angry. I
Be kind. Becoming a more effective partner is the most efficient way to assure a loving, intimate relationship. Kindness and having your partner’s back are essential. Using “argument enders” and “intimacy builders” will strengthen your connection.
‘Forgiveness is not a gift – it’s a transaction’
Work to rebuild intimacy. Becoming sexually intimate is often complicated and challenging, particularly after a troubled time. Both partners need to reach out with tenderness and compassion, recognising they may each feel vulnerable and raw.