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The Unrealistic Romantic Myth

A toast to lasting love
A toast to lasting love
Getty Images Ariel Skelley photographer

It has been stated time and time again that it is natural for romance and passion to fade in long-term relationships and marriages. Nonetheless there are books and workshops geared toward helping couples rekindle passion. This suggests there are a lot of people who do not want a relationship devoid of passion and romance. Are they being unrealistic?

Reality check

In all of my travels and experience, I have yet to come across a couple that woke up one day and said together, “Let’s stop being romantic!” Generally speaking, what happens is one person makes him or herself less available to the other for romance and intimacy. Couples also often shift their priorities with the addition of children and fail to set aside time to pamper one another. If you neglect anything it’s only natural that it will die.

Mixed Matched Pairings

It’s not uncommon for one person in the relationship to be a “natural romantic.” This person naturally remembers key dates and events the couple experiences and is always ready to do something special. However their mate who may consider him or herself to be “practical” looks forward to relaxing in the relationship. One speculates what life would be like if two “natural romantics” got together. The reason there are so many mixed matched pairings is because practical people behave like romantics in the beginning of new relationships! After there is an emotional investment they tend to revert back to their authentic selves. Eventually the romantic stops making the effort to keep passion alive after a series of rejections or unenthusiastic responses from their mate. What can be done?

Heart to Heart

The couple must have a heart to heart discussion about the state of their relationship. No one person can keep the romance alive in a relationship. Both people have to want to make changes in order to bring about change. If you are the romantic you will have no problems coming up with ideas. On the other hand if you are not naturally wired that way you may require some help.

The Secret Lover’s Calendar

If you are the “practical” person in the relationship, you may want to create a Secret Lover’s Calendar to help you stay on track. Take a calendar, and circle all the special dates that apply to your relationship as well as the Hallmark holidays and long weekends. These are all ideal dates for doing something special to show your appreciation for your mate. It can be something as simple as leaving a love note on the bathroom mirror, a sexy voice mail or a greeting card; giving a massage; a surprise seduction; or planning a getaway. Your only limitation is your imagination. Make a note of what you did, and try to be unpredictable.

It’s easier to maintain a fire than it is to reignite a spark!

It’s not unrealistic to expect to have a lifelong romantic and passionate relationship. It just requires making it a priority in your life.