Love Advice for a Good Relationship

Alabaster sclupture of clasped hands with hanging heart-shaped lights in the background |Male Sexual Desire is More Complex than You Think | Passion by Kait

When you’ve been with your significant other for a while, it’s always a welcome surprise to discover that there’s more to, well, discover. Anything that breaks you out of your regular routine (ok, rut) gives you a chance to reconnect deeply, catch up on sleep (let’s be real—this is most of the magic), and discover some seriously solid love advice.

For example, the beau and I took a staycation over the holidays.We made a list of things along the L that we wanted to see before it shutdown it was announced that it wouldn’t shut down, put together a few itineraries, and committed to exploring new parts of the city. For 10 straight days we slept in, did only what we wanted (and the dog required), and basked in each other’s company. This time and space to just be inspired a ton of thoughts about what makes a good relationship.

9 bits of love advice for a good relationship that lasts

  1. Take more moments to collapse, giggling over something so ridiculous you won’t remember it even as you cherish the moment forever.
  2. Believe them when they respond “nothing” to your inquiry of what’s on their mind. There are so many things I notice that the beau overlooks, likely a result of my being a woman raised to be hyperaware and take care of everyone’s needs. But after 14 years, with few exceptions, I believe—and envy—this truth.
  3. Balanced blood sugar is the real key to a good relationship. Throw a protein bar (these and these are my go-tos) in all your bags and save yourself an unnecessary argument.
  4. Find yourself in an arugment anyways? Check out these 11 tips to fight more fairly.
  5. Focus on shared pleasures, whether that’s delicious food, media, art, sports, whatever. It’s such a gift. Speaking of gifts…
  6. Appliances make the sexiest ones! For our anniversary it was an a/c for my office and for Christmas it was a bidet attachment. I’m *almost* looking forward to the next colonoscopy prep…
  7. Good communication is hard AF—do it anyway.
  8. It’s going to feel even harder as you practice good communication and boundary setting. Don’t be afraid to reach out for support, whether that’s from married friends of a sexuality professional like me.
  9. Your partner not having the capacity to meet a certain need right now is not a rejection of you. Boundaries are human, healthy, and normal. It still hurts. When you’re both calm, talk about it and make a plan for both of you to expand your capacity for caretaking AND your network of support. It’s not fair or realistic to rely on your partner to meet 100% of your needs AND ALSO all your needs deserve to be met.
  10. Gender stereotypes suck for everyone. The staycation illuminated how often I blame the beau for being a dude who grew up in this same patriarchal, misogynistic soup as the rest of us…even as he actively dismantles this and works his allyship. UGH
  11. Same for marriage and relationship expectations. All the comparing and judging and negative self talk is the biggest libido killer. Fuck the shoulds and choose whatever brings you freedom in pleasure.

Now it’s your turn! What’s the best piece of love advice you’ve ever received?

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