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23 May 2024

How to…plug a draining relationship

By Bindu Suresh Rai

Right, are you battling the post Valentine blues? Where a disappointed day of romance has resulted in a sulking partner or worse?

“The New York Post” reported on data compiled by Awo.com - a site that offers free ratings and profiles for lawyers and licensed MDs – which indicated that the divorce rate post Valentine’s Day has increased over the last two years.

Founder and CEO of Awo Mark Britton was quoted as saying: “Over the past two years we’ve seen an average increase of 40 per cent in the number of requests for divorce lawyers around Valentine’s Day, compared to the previous six months.

“Furthermore, the number of questions about divorce has soared 36 per cent during that same time. Indeed, there’s definitely a major Valentine’s spike when it comes to divorce.”

If you too don’t want to be a statistic, here are top ways to unplug a draining relationship.
Admit to the leak
You cannot salvage any relationship if neither partner is willing to admit there is a problem. Lay all your cards on the table and point out if you are feeling upset, humiliated or victimised, let your partner also do the same, giving both of you a chance to speak your minds.
Open lines of communication
Over 70 per cent of divorces occur due to lack of communication on both ends.
Start talking once again, confiding in each other, clearing up misunderstandings (if any), and even admitting if neither likes any quirky habits of the other. Once you start talking and defining the problem, you can jointly sit down and think of a solution.
Stop the blame game
If you want to solve your relationship issues, blaming each other for every minor problem will only breakdown the talks even before they begin. Admit that both are equally to blame and have been hurt in the ordeal. What you need to do is think of solutions to the problems, ensuring that they are not repeated in the future.
Compliment each other
As difficult as it may be to find good points in your partner when they appear to be the root cause of your hurt, complimenting them will not only make them easier to approach with your problems, but will also work as a reminder why you fell in love to begin with. Once both of you are at ease, neither person will be on the defensive and will be willing to work things through.
Rebuild trust
One of the first things that occur when a relationship hits troubled waters is loss of trust on both parts. Learning to trust each other is never an overnight project, which is why it’s important to mend bridges a step at a time. Find situations that will help you grow closer together and build from there. Once trust is regained, things go a lot smoother from there.
Take the patience pill
We all know that patience is a virtue, and getting frustrated with your partner is hardly a step in the right direction when things are already unsteady in the relationship. With patience, you can keep your emotions in check and give yourself time to think before making hurtful remarks in the heat of an argument and worsening the situation.
Be open to changes
After months, maybe even years, of emotional detachment, you are finally moving in the right direction, but this means that you have to change for the better. Put forth suggestions for one another where each can improve and make the effort to incorporate said changes without completely losing your identity.
Add a bit of romance
There’s nothing like a bit of romance injected to spice things up a bit and remind you why you got together in the first place. Take your partner for a romantic dinner for two, or better yet, spend the night in complete with candles and a relaxing massage — believe us, the morning after will breathe a new lease of life into your relationship.
Escape for the weekend
Sometimes it’s difficult to have a serious conversation with repeated interruptions with your phone ringing incessantly, work problems plaguing you and even something as simple as readying the evening meal. Escape from it all for a weekend, giving each other the much-needed undivided attention and a chance to communicate at peace.
Seek help
Sometimes you reach a point in the relationship where even lines of communication break down. In such instances, admit that you need help and seek the help of a marriage counsellor who can help distinguish problems and allows each of you to overcome personal hurdles.