Five Things That Could Be Missing From YOUR Love Life

Isn't it interesting how we can become so invested in what we have that we fail to notice what may be lacking? It could be due to distractions, ignorance, or the fact that facing reality is sometimes a little too harsh to bear. So what do we do? We put our blockers on and try to manage the best we can with what's in front of us. Which is cool, for the moment. Eventually you will notice that you desire more for yourself and your environment. What was once acceptable becomes inadequate. You're not necessarily unhappy with the person that you're with, but the circumstances that y'all are in as a couple (or whatever you may be). I like to think that while some people are just plain out incompatible and probably even bad for each other, some relationships--if not most--must unfold rather than being laid out in plain sight from the very beginning. No matter the understanding or the bond, it should be agreed on by both parties that happiness matters on both ends. Even if that results in disagreements or parting ways. Before you put an expiration date on the person or the situation at hand, be sure that you have considered that the following factors that may contribute to the wellbeing of the relationship could be MIA:  

1.) Talk of the future

It seems simple, but it is an element that is often overlooked in relationships. Old or new, you should be able to talk freely and openly about the distant future with the one you're with. The scary part is how many question marks there are between now and the distant future. Just because we talk about it and plan it exactly how we want it to be, there is still no guarantee that it will play out that way. The purpose of including the person in future plans is not to make anything definitive, but instead to symbolize that you have intentions of having your SOS in your life months or years to come. And for those that are intimidated by talk of the future, ask yourself why. While it can be overwhelming, it should also be exciting. Especially if you have a good one on your side to help you combat all of the craziness to come!

2.) Boundaries

Sometimes you need to draw the line yourself and sometimes the other person does it for you. Either way, boundaries are important and also have a great chance of being glazed over because some people think that a relationship=all access pass. If that's the arrangement that you and your partner have made then fine, but do not assume that this is the case. And NEVER, and I do mean NEVER, base your current situation on past encounters. This is just a reminder that boundaries are not limited to all things physical. There could be boundaries as far as triggers, expectations, and even materialistic things like finances/belongings. As I previously stated, some relationships have to unfold and the more that happens, the fewer boundaries will be deemed necessary. Boundaries are not rules to be followed, they are points of restriction.

3.) The ability to ask/answer

I have come to realize that when you reach a certain level of comfort with the one that you love, great conversations are always on the horizon.  The simplest interactions can turn into the most revealing and eye-opening talks. Sometimes you learn new and exciting things about the one you're with just by asking the most basic question or answering and listening to their response. If you're intimidated by what they may say or do if you dig too deep or you're afraid to be honest in your own answers then maybe a reevaluation is needed. There are some topics that may be sensitive subjects or a little awkward, but that doesn't make them any less important. The point is that you are striving to get you to the point of ease and total transparency.

4.)  Intimacy

We're not just talking about sex here. That's a common misconception among people that haven't really experienced true intimacy. The kind that comes from getting to this place of such synchronization that nothing can interrupt the flow of your energies. Intimacy isn't just you and your person losing track of space and time, or laying body to body with no room in between, it's the trust that says "I'll let you tune me, like an instrument that's all out of whack." It is also the willingness to reciprocate and make your partner feel so warm and appreciated. And when intimacy is physical, it is not forced or aggressive, it just flows. It almost cannot be defined because that's how personal it feels like no one can quite pinpoint it without metaphors and similes. Relationships are beautiful, but not all are made up of beautiful moments, which is what we all long for.

5.)  Problem-solving skills

Elementary, you would think. But there is a huge difference in academic problem-solving skills, life problem-solving skills, and love life problem-solving skills. They are not transferable and people stop trying to master the other two once they think they have a good grip on one. If I weren't such an emotional being then I may react the same way, but being the way that I am has shown me how important distinguishing each area is. Adapting to your partner's way of dealing with barriers inside and outside of the relationship can feel like a game changer. It may seem that they handle things wrong, just because they handle things differently. But the most basic and non-negotiable part of it all is their openness to fixing whatever needs fixing. And it's not all about how you troubleshoot, but that you do it together. Cheesy sounding, yet so beneficial for a healthy relationship.

Isn't it crazy how all of the above listed require some level of communication? Some conversations will require a bit more vulnerability than others, but if you want a relationship that feels whole--without any gaps or ellipses--then you will do what is necessary to move forward with your person. Maybe this article will stir the pot a little, provide a certain amount of relief for you, or cause you to question what you have or want. In any case, it's healthy to evaluate your needs and establish standards in your love life. Even the bonds that are the happiest require constant work and tending to. Be encouraged by the possibility of betterment and the room for growth!