Friday, March 29, 2013

Being Apart To Stay Together.. for Married Couples!

One relationship advice that keeps cropping up for dating couples is: "Don't spend too much time together," with reasons like keeping the relationship fresh and exciting, preventing couples from taking each other for granted, and maintaining the joy of being in each other's company.  All well and good.

Which is why, I'm kind of freaking out at the prospect of spending soooo much time together with Fiance after marriage. Right now, the mindset is that, our time together is time to do fun things, get away from work, and recharge each other, which works awesomely. On the agenda when we see each other (outside of capoeira training & chiropractic session) : cook together, watch funny videos, make out, talk about work, night swim, yoga from youtube videos, trekking, try out new restaurants, make out..wait, did I just mention make out twice? Ah, heck ><

FYI, we see each other at least 4 times a week, mostly because we have capoeira training & chiropractic sessions and it feels natural to spend time together afterwards, so I feel what we have is very much enough and am sure that doing what we do right now for the whole week will just burn the relationship out.

Funny thing, the night I thought I'd tell the Fiance this and find out if he also thinks it would be a problem, he told me he wanted to stay over but he'd bring his laptop so he could work in my place. I told him, sure, I have things to do too, so for the first time in 2.5years relationship, we'd be in the same room but 'ignoring' each other haha..

It worked out great =) Having the freedom of doing our own things and not focusing on each other was kind of liberating, and at the same time the closeness of being just across the room is comforting. He even managed to fold a paper aeroplane and launched it to fly right to my workspace:

Yes, my Fiance is artistic ;p

Still, I thought of some ways of 'staying apart' while being married (or being in relationship for a long time) :

1. Set up 'couple time', 'alone time/friend time', 'work late time' and stick to them
E.g 'couple time' is Saturday (like for us), 'alone/ friend time' Thurs night , 'work late time' Tue night. Other days, it's flexible time. It works because your partner knows what to expect & planning is easier (To guys, this help girls feel more secure & important in your life, as they know you have set aside time for them.) Plus, spending time with Fiance on Saturdays becomes something I'm really looking forward to that helped carry me through whole week. Likewise, scheduling 'alone time' and making it known reduces the chance our your partner interrupting that time slot.

2. Consider setting up 'Miss You Days' (it sounds super cheesy, I know. Suggestions on the name? >< ) It just means, have time where you really won't see/ contact each other. For us, thinking of changing one Saturday a month from 'couple' day to Miss-You-Day.. the point being, to experience that feeling of being apart and missing each other again!

3. Get used to the mindset that we don't have to just do things together when we see each other. We can do our own stuff, just in the comfy company of each other
As of now, I'm pretty bad at this. Having my Fiance over just awakens all those 'girlfriend instincts' - want to cook for him, cuddle up to him, etc. Also, I tend to think, "Ah, but if I just do my own stuff.. who's gonna keep him company..? and he came over to be with me! that's so sweet of him, I can't just leave him alone...", but after our 'working together' experience, I'm actually looking forward to doing it more often

4. Squeeze some productivity out of our time together
In fact, the issue of 'our time together = unproductive time' came up before and my restless self told Fiance let's have a list of things we want to do when we see each other. Him being him, said sweetly, "When I'm not with you, I'm in the fast-paced work environment, so many things to do and think about... when we're together, you make me feel so relaxed.. you slow me down, recharge me, so why must we call it unproductive time?"
Huks >< So next best thing, is doing 'productive' BUT FUN' things together. Recently, we've started doing yoga together (using yoga videos), and watching financial youtube videos to bulk up on our knowledge.. which works awesome since I ..ahem.. wouldn't have done it if I'm just being myself! Other things you can do might be exploring parts of the city while brushing up on photography skills, taking turns using the camera, cook together - make healthy snacks that both of you can bring to the office for those late nights.

5. Set up your 'own space' in the house
This can be as simple as what we did, putting another big table in the room for Fiance to work (my room, but soon to be our marital room..) . It becomes his personal space, to be set up and stocked according to his liking, so he feels he has proper workspace in the house. Meanwhile, my work table stays mine and I don't have to feel that I have to make any concession to my working space when he's around.

Perhaps The Reader has any other suggestions? =) (Need advice especially from married people!)