I was watching the TV show “Friends”. In one of the episodes Phoebe and Mike broke up because Mike never wanted to get married again and Phoebe did want a marriage someday. I started thinking: it often happens that people who are in a relationship sometimes don’t want the same things. At the same time, even if they do want the same things, the effort is often not the same.
What do you do when your partner doesn’t put as much effort into the relationship as you do?
This is a good question, if you ask me. Some people would say that if you put more effort into your relationship than your partner, you should split up. Or that you should make your partner jealous so he/she feels how much their life would suck without you in it. Obviously, this is the negative approach. A more optimistic or hopeful approach would be to think that maybe your partner isn’t as good at showing his/her feelings as you are. Perhaps your partner loves you even more than you love him/her, but you can just show it better. In my opinion, that’s a lame excuse.
It doesn’t take much to show a person that you care about him/her. If you can’t write poetry or you don’t have the money to spoil your significant other, you could, for example:
- Go to his/her workplace or home and just surprise him/her;
- Alternatively, you pick a flower from your (neighbor’s) garden and you bring it to him/her;
- Maybe you just plan a romantic dinner with candlelight or a movie night for the two of you so you can just be close to each other.
People often think that it’s the big things that matter, when in fact the little things make a big difference.
If you’re waiting for the right moment to do something, let me tell you something: there is no such thing as the right moment. Not to be negative, but who says you’ll even be alive tomorrow? Do the little things. Show your partner every day that you love him/her. This could be as simple as writing a text message saying “good morning beautiful” or “you are the light of my day”. If you don’t know what to write/say, Google “romantic stuff to say to your significant other. Trust me, you’ll find a lot of examples.
Don’t wait for the right moment, the right amount of money or the right anything. Show how you feel now. Don’t just say “I love you” but truly let the person feel that you mean it!
What if the effort is there but you want different things?
- Take it as it is and see if one of the partners eventually changes his/her mind;
- Talk about it and try to see where you can compromise;
- Accept that it will never change and break up.
I can’t tell you which of these is the best alternative for your relationship, because every situation is different. However, I think communication is very important and if you really love each other, you might be able to reach a compromise.