My relationship has become a little mundane- advice?


#1

Hey everyone :slight_smile:

I have a small request for some advice from you that are seasoned and experienced in relationships. My boyfriend and I are both 20 and have been dating for over 3 years. We go to the same school, and actually live down the hall from each other in our dorm(completely by coincedence). Something I’ve noticed recently is that our relationship has become really mundane and… boring for lack of a better word. I know infatuation doesn’t and really shouldn’t last, but I think passion and excitement are really important in a relationship. I just feel like that’s away for the moment.

We obviously still love each other, and I was wondering if anyone has any ideas/advice for getting it exciting again. We are chaste, so the secular world’s advice of “spice up your sex life” obviously doesn’t help much =/ Thank you everyone!


#2

I actually always have this problem.

Are you spending all your time together? Maybe try to do some more things independently, and do things that make you more interesting/impressive. I find that when a guy has a life of his own, and is interesting and impressive that I find him more exciting and attractive.

Infatuation hasn’t lasted for me in relationships either, but I don’t agree that it “shouldn’t last”. Relationships are really boring without it.


#3

Maybe try to do some more things independently, and do things that make you more interesting/impressive.

That’s a really good suggestion. Like I said, we live down the hall from each other, so we may be on overload with each other. I did the Disney College Program last semester, so I was in Florida and he was here in Arizona. It was for 5-months, so when I got back, we may have clung to each other to much. Thanks for the advice :slight_smile: I’ll definitely take it to heart.


#4

That’s really good advice to pursue your own interests here and there. Being in a couple doesn’t mean you abandon your own interests. Not in a healthy relationship. This phase is a good test to see if you both are ready for a real commitment because marriage is not all moonlight and butterflies and about 3 years is when some people’s sell-by date passes and they get itchy feet and are out the door. It’s good to see if your BF is one of these. Find out now. It’s really horrible when you find out AFTER the wedding.

Life isn’t always spice and a trip to Disneyworld. Sometimes it’s slogging through day to day monotony. And the people slogging with us make it bearable. Maturity means you don’t demand moonlight and butterflies every day. It also means you don’t panic and think it’s over because that butterfly sensation in the pit of your stomach is gone. Or fleeting.

Sometimes those butterflies are really uncertainty. And the thrill of the chase is because you don’t know how it will end. Sometimes it’s nice to be able to depend on a person even when it’s sometimes dull.

Which isn’t to say they’re dull.

When your whole world becomes all about one person, that becomes a very small and boring world. A better relationship is when you bring the world to each other and see it through their eyes.

Good for you keeping it chaste! :thumbsup: Some people unsuited for each other get lost in the physical and never go through the “doldrums.” Then they marry and the doldrums come along and they quit. Because they never found ways to find each other interesting outside of bed.

Because really, eventually you have to get out of bed and deal with who the other person really is. You’re doing it right. Smart girl!
:thumbsup:

Just be sure you’re on the same page when you decide to do other activities. So he doesn’t think this is the beginning of a very gentle dumping.

Maybe it’s time to go do volunteer work together… You would see a different aspect of each other’s personality as you maybe worked at a soup kitchen or helped build a house for Habitat or something. You’d be doing something different, somethign to give you more to talk about, and you’d still kind of be together, and doing something that benefits others.


#5

[quote="Liberanosamalo, post:4, topic:189754"]
That's really good advice to pursue your own interests here and there. Being in a couple doesn't mean you abandon your own interests. Not in a healthy relationship. This phase is a good test to see if you both are ready for a real commitment because marriage is not all moonlight and butterflies and about 3 years is when some people's sell-by date passes and they get itchy feet and are out the door. It's good to see if your BF is one of these. Find out now. It's really horrible when you find out AFTER the wedding.

Life isn't always spice and a trip to Disneyworld. Sometimes it's slogging through day to day monotony. And the people slogging with us make it bearable. Maturity means you don't demand moonlight and butterflies every day. It also means you don't panic and think it's over because that butterfly sensation in the pit of your stomach is gone. Or fleeting.

[/quote]

I don't know, some women on this forum have said that their husbands still give them butterflies/chills after long marriages.


#6

They are very lucky. But that's an extra in life. I wouldn't rate a good man on whether he still gave you chills and be dissatisfied if he didn't if he were 100 percent good in other areas.

I think our society has been sold a bill of goods on what "love" is supposed to feel like and when the Hollywood version fades, people think it's time to move on.


#7

I don’t think you need to sell chemistry and passion to people. It’s the commitment in the absence of that that needs to be sold, and is often a hard sell.


#8

I agree with what Liberanos says. It is important to realise that love is more than just chemistry, passion, excitement. In fact, there are people who seem to love each other genuinely without those things (imagine people who share lots of affection but virtually no things like flirting etc. and they live routine lives that seem mundane to others, you'd call them lovey doves or something like that, but there would be no explosives, just maybe the "butterflies").

They say love is a choice, but love is an attitude rather. That means it's some predisposition towards the other person but more than that. Friendship and commitment are pretty much the substance of it, while the sympathy, the feelings etc., give it some temperature and it's hard without those things... A good thing to rekindle them, to think of ways to rekindle them, but it would probably be an error to think that there is something wrong with the match if the relationship isn't particularly exciting some long time into it. In my opinion, chances are very much that the same problem would appear in a relationship with someone else.

I'd probably try to remember what brought you two together, reassure yourselves (as far as it is true) that you want to pursue that relationship, find something to do together because as Saint-Exupery (the author of the Little Prince) said, love is not about looking at each other, it's about looking in the same direction, perhaps appreciate more the things that keep you together which are other than sensations of whatever kind; whatever makes you want to age and have grandchildren with that person. Then again, I'm just a single dood with lots of failure under his belt, so. ;)

[quote="flyingfish, post:7, topic:189754"]
I don't think you need to sell chemistry and passion to people. It's the commitment in the absence of that that needs to be sold, and is often a hard sell.

[/quote]

Flyingfish, commitment is something on a different level from that passion, chemistry and excitement. Yes, it still has some inexplicable parts to it... You never know what makes you want to take a bullet for somebody, but that certainly isn't chemistry or excitement, it takes much more and much different. The "dying" part is the man's role from Ephesians, but embarking on a bit of speculative extrapolation, what kind of man would you have the impulse to risk your life for (or entrust your own life to)... some guy that were brilliant, mingling, sparkling, causing chills and so on, or someone you respected, admired, saw the value of? I believe the latter and that's the part with commitment. Chemistry and excitement are good (in the right context, otherwise, I'd say neutral), but without that commitment part, they are so empty.


#9

Three years is a long time to stay "idle" in a relationship.

Why are you not married? I agree with Catholic family teachers, like Steve Wood, that dating should be a year then if you discern this is the person to marry, engagement should be no longer than a year after that.


#10

[quote="kage_ar, post:9, topic:189754"]
Three years is a long time to stay "idle" in a relationship.

Why are you not married? I agree with Catholic family teachers, like Steve Wood, that dating should be a year then if you discern this is the person to marry, engagement should be no longer than a year after that.

[/quote]

I agree... Have you talked about the next steps in your relationship? Are you making choices NOW in college that will lead and guide you both to places that would make a future marriage something that is possible (meaning career-wise in what you're studying)...

But as for practical stuff to keep your relationship interesting... start making MEMORIES NOW! LEARN something new together! Take up mountain biking... scuba diving... rock collecting... whatever. DO SOMETHING that takes the stress off "the relationship" and puts it on LIVING. Believe me... if/when you do get married, you'll want to look back at your dating years with smiles and longing for the "good old days"... so make it FUN!


#11

[quote="kage_ar, post:9, topic:189754"]
Three years is a long time to stay "idle" in a relationship.

Why are you not married? I agree with Catholic family teachers, like Steve Wood, that dating should be a year then if you discern this is the person to marry, engagement should be no longer than a year after that.

[/quote]

I don't think there is any official path one must follow while dating. Time frames may vary significantly between couples. What is right for one may not be right for another. The majority of people I know in there 20s have dated 3 years-ish before getting engaged. I do know some who dated shorter/longer. As long as the relationship/marriage lasts, then they probably took the right course of action.


#12

I agree... Have you talked about the next steps in your relationship? Are you making choices NOW in college that will lead and guide you both to places that would make a future marriage something that is possible (meaning career-wise in what you're studying)..

Yes to your questions ;) We're not married because we started dating when we were 16, and now we're 20 years old and sophomores in college. When we do get married (something we are serious about and actively working towards), we have agreed: openness to children and no contraception. Would it be beneficial if we were to be married now and we did become pregnant? Probably not, since we're not even half way done with our education and are not financially stable enough to support that life. We are actively planning to get married when we're done with our undergraduate studies.

As for career and studying choices, it is minorly complicated. He is in Army ROTC, so he will have a 4-year commitment as an officer after he graduates. After that, he can choose whether he stays in or not. He will go where the Army tells him. What makes it complicated is that I, an engineering student, have lots of options available to me that would take me to other places (grad school, internships, etc). (If anyone has any advice on that one as well, I would much appreciate that as well, ha. :thumbsup:) I'm actually considering also getting a license to teach because a) it is something I have always been interested in and b) it's a job that exists everywhere, allowing me to "follow" him wherever he has to go.


#13

By the way, thank you EVERYONE for your advice :)


#14

NOW we can relate! :smiley:
What kind of engineering are you studying? I’m an EE… its a tough field of study so I know you’re working hard!! :thumbsup:
I’ve been working in EE for 8 1/2 years… through all 3 of my pregnancies… it’s tough work, very stressful. It’s still my dream one day to go into teaching as well, but the pay cut would be tough… hopefully one day! I think its an excellent career path for a working mother having the vacations on the same schedule… so definitely keep that in mind!

Keep up the good work… sounds like you’re making wise choices with your boyfriend. I know it feels like time in standing still… 2 years left of school before real marriage plans can be made… but it’ll be over before you know it - so definitely try to think of some of those new “memories” you can make while you have the freedom of being a college student. Learn something new together and find a mutual hobby that will keep your interest focused on fun togetherness.

God bless!!!


#15

Oh... and another thing...
Consider doing something bigger than yourselves... like maybe join an active volunteer group on campus? Work at the local soup kitchen? Teach Sunday School together?

Just some more ideas!


#16

Now I'm taking over your thread... sorry...

I just wanted to say... I see you're joining the Church at Easter! Congratulations! :)

One thing to keep in mind - sort of a common theme with a lot of converts - that sometimes that "conversion high" (falling in LOVE with the faith) can sort of make everything else in life seem... well... dim. :o
Take it in stride. Not everything in life is going to be this HUGE. It's going to sometimes feel like there are some "valleys" in your life compared to these "highs" you're probably feeling now. Try to keep in mind that this is normal. Also, don't give your boyfriend too hard of a time if he can't help you sustain that "high" forever. Sometimes the mundane day-to-day living can be tough... so don't give up on the good fight. :)


#17

:smiley: lol Emily. I’m studying Engineering Physics with an emphasis in ME. EE was my second choice and from what I’ve seen from other students, WOW, so much computer work! Although I’m now kinda considering going over to CE… I think I’m more interested in statics and stand-still things than motors and machines. We’ll see! :slight_smile:

As for volunteering, we have a CareNet here in our town that I want to volunteer at once I get Safe Environment training, etc. My boyfriend already volunteers at the elementary school in our town’s main parish and again, once I have Safe Environment training, I’m going to see if they need any tutors in math or science.


#18

You kind of remind me of my fiance and I. We’ve been together for 5 years so I’ve been there :slight_smile:

As for the marriage talk, yes, for many people a year of dating is normal, but it isn’t the only way of doing things. As you can see, my fiance and I definitely did not do the 1 year of dating to marriage. I think that a long dating period can work out good in some cases. For us, dating for a longer time allowed us to mature and learn to appreciate each other more.

But anyways, that’s not what your thread was about…

I really think that all relationships go through stages, even dating ones. I think it’s natural to go through kind of a comfortable and boring (for lack of a better word) stage. I like other’s suggestions. Perhaps try doing something bigger than yourself like helping the poor. Volunteer at a pregnancy center. Something that will leave you feeling good but having done it together you’ll both grow from it.

Perhaps take up a new hobby? For instance, my fiance and I learned that we both really enjoy camping together so that’s something that we now try to do in the summers. And I also think that special date nights are also still important in relationships. So if you find that you tend to always do the same things together, try and go somewhere new for a date.

And that’s awesome that you guys are being chaste, I’m always happy to read about others that are devoted too! Seems like you’re always reading about the other side of it, so good for you guys! :thumbsup:


#19

I don’t make the kind of distinction you do. Someone I respected, admired, and saw the value of (etc.) would give me chills. I wouldn’t be attracted to a male model without much more to him than his looks, for example.

I just think without that something, the man becomes a friend rather than a mate. That is my problem, and has always been. I just don’t think I would want to be married to someone I only saw as a friend and the chemistry was gone, I think I’d want to stay friends and continue to value that person as a friend but move on with the search for a mate.

I don’t know about the whole die for/entrust life to. The only people I’ve ever felt I could entrust my life to were my parents, and maybe only my mom for that matter. I don’t really see myself dying for anyone either. I would risk my life (acceptable risk, not jumping into a volcano on the off chance I could save a friend) for people I care about, but straight out dying for someone? I don’t see it. But things are different now that I no longer believe in an afterlife.


#20

[quote="flyingfish, post:19, topic:189754"]

I don't know about the whole die for/entrust life to. The only people I've ever felt I could entrust my life to were my parents, and maybe only my mom for that matter. I don't really see myself dying for anyone either. I would risk my life (acceptable risk, not jumping into a volcano on the off chance I could save a friend) for people I care about, but straight out dying for someone? I don't see it. But things are different now that I no longer believe in an afterlife.

[/quote]

I definitely would risk my life to help a close friend in need or my future significant other. However, I think I would also take some sort of risks to save a random person if they were in danger. Granted I've never encountered a situation that required me to risk serious harm to save someone else, I still think I would. It is just how I am.

Sparing all the details....while camping many years ago as young adult, my small group helped save several people who were in really bad shape in the 'wilderness' and bordering on hypothermia because they were ill-prepared (I was not in danger though). There was a newspaper story or two written about it. I think this is only the third or fourth time I've talked about this experience.


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