When you have the ‘right’ partner, everything seems better. Your partner becomes your best friend, your support system, your only true confidante, and the person you expect by your side through all of life’s adventures and challenges.
But no matter how wonderful your relationship is, there is a delicate balance between closeness in the relationship, and maintaining your own separate lives and interests.
Closeness Tips for Successful Relationships
Many couples struggle with the idea of being apart. They see their relationship as only a single entity, rather than two unique individuals who have come together to be in a relationship with one another. Spending time apart, however, can actually be useful for the relationship:
- Maintaining Your Own Friends – Having your own friendships allows you to have a support system that isn’t just your partner. There is far less negative pressure on the relationship when a person has his or her own friends to turn to irrespective of what happens in the marriage.
- Personal Grown – Some independence in a relationship is useful for developing yourself as an individual. Relationships are made up of two unique people, each with his or her own unique goals and personality. Your independence can actually add to the relationship by making you a stronger individual partner.
- Exacerbating Challenges – When a couple is too enmeshed, your partner’s behavior and moods affect your functioning in an excessive, almost exponential manner. When you have your own interests, friendships, and activities, your happiness is not solely dependent on what your partner does with you and for you.
None of this is to imply that activities should be done in secret, or that you should spend all of your time apart. Indeed, this is not about creating distance between you.
Partners that maintain some independence while in the relationship, however, can bring the benefits of those independent experiences back into the relationship, creating a stronger connection between you and your partner, and helping you feel more confident in who you are as a person.
For more information on couples counseling, therapy, and tips for Long Island couples, please give me a call today.