One of the main reasons why relationships suffer or ultimately fail is because people become way too complacent in them. They stop doing the things that they did to attract the other person in the first place. That includes everything from staying fit and dressing nicely to being romantic and surprising your partner with little gifts.
Thankfully, my relationship with my wife is still going strong after 10 years. (We've been married for close to two years now.) Still, it's evident we've become comfortable in our relationship. For the most part, the "cutesy" things we used to do for each other have taken a back seat to the responsibities of married life -- bills, laundry, and so on.
That doesn't mean we don't love each other. It means that our relationship has evolved and matured. And we each still do nice things for each other, if sparingly. For example, I might surprise her with a romantic dinner at a charming restaurant, and she might cook my favorite meal out of the blue.
People should not neglect their appearance once they become comfortable in the relationship. It's important to continue eating healthy, exercising, dressing well, and all the other things you might have done in the early stages of courtship.
Unfortunately, far too many marriages end in divorce and relationships in ruins because one person takes the other for granted. Once you and your partner establishes certain comfort level, it can be tempting to simply "cruise" in the relationship and no longer put as much time and effort into it as you used to.
The neat, tidy perfectionist suddenly becomes a lazy slob who leaves clothes lying all over the place. The smooth romantic turns into an argumentative crank who does nothing but complain about his partner's shortcomings. I'm sure you or someone you know has been there.
The fact if the matter is that we usually don't know a person's flaws right off the bat, given that in the early stages of a relationship, people are trying to put their best foot forward.
But in order for a relationship to endure, both people have to learn to love and accept each other for who they are -- flaws and all -- while making a conscious effort to continue doing those little things that won the other over.
If you went on mini vacations when you first got together, keep taking them, even sporadically. If you gave your partner surprise massages in the first years of the relationship, why not pamper him or her every once in a while?
The bottom line is that a relationship is doomed to fail unless both people put their part. Keep doing the things you did to draw your partner to you -- and come up with new ways to reinvigorate the relationship, especially if you've been together for several years. You'd be amazed at the excitement spontaneity can inject into a relationship.
Do you agree?