Forever love: it’s the stuff that fairytales are made of, and no great love story is complete without the promise of ‘…and they lived happily ever after…’
Here are a few of the most important secrets to forever love:
- It’s essential that both partners declare themselves willing to make themselves vulnerable. They have to be willing to open their hearts to the other, and to be curious about how to fulfil each others needs.
- In forever love there needs to be shared relational responsibility, so that each partner is pulling their weight to maintain the love in the relationship.
- It really is the ‘small stuff’, the seemingly insignificant acts of kindness and gestures of thoughtfulness that create the most appreciation for each other in a love relationship. It’s important to say thank you, and to recognise the time and effort required to generate an income or to complete tiresome household chores.
- Regular surprise treats are also important, like gifting your partner with a box of chocolates, or even just making them a nice cup of tea when they’re tired. The small things we do for each other form the glue that keeps a couple together. They provide us with security and remind us that the other person is committed, and that’s an incredibly important part of feeling safe in a relationship.
- Non-verbal communication and physical affection, like a look, a hug, or a caress, is just as important as an intimate conversation, or those all-important words, ‘I love you.’ It’s important to maintain physical closeness and spectacular sex.
- Shared activities have a profoundly positive impact on couples, including exercising together on a regular basis, or reliving happy memories and having fun.
- Conflict isn’t a deal-breaker, unless it’s handled poorly. It’s important to air those everyday niggles before they build up into something much bigger.
- All couples experience stressful times, be it going through financial difficulties or illness, experiencing losses, or simply just trying to balance all the lifestyle factors that come with modern life. The happiest couples pull together in times of hardship. There seems to be a lot of wisdom in the old belief that ‘what doesn’t break you will make you’ in terms of external stressors on a relationship. Being there for each other through difficult times is something that makes relationships stronger.