Keeping a Relationship Alive and Interesting

Efforts to really know your partner continue throughout your lifetime. People do not change, but they do mature in their tastes, preferences, attitudes and feelings. What keeps a relationship alive and interesting is your desire to know your partner completely, yet never really attaining that goal.

There is no such thing as “enough” when it comes to knowing your partner well. Your partner will continue to develop new facets to his personality as time progresses and he has new and different experiences. You can know your partner well, but never enough.

You only have to think back over the past and reflect on the changes that have occurred in your own life. You are not quite the same now as you were in your twenties, thirties etc . . . . You change, you grow. So does your partner. It takes constant, loving vigilance to keep the “knowing” of your partner current and pertinent.

Some things about your partner will never change. He will take his coffee a particular way, have a favorite chair, prefer to sleep on the right side of the bed. Less concrete things, however, will continually change; his thoughts about life, his attitudes toward others, his preferences about how he spends his free time.

Life experience, professional fulfillment, relationships with friends, extended family and coworkers all leave their imprint on your partner’s psyche. Life is seldom stagnant and change begets change. Two individuals agree to make the life journey as partners for better or worse. You cannot predict the future so there will always be an unknown element to your relationship as you stretch and strive to meet the challenges life presents.

On a personal note, I have spent almost half a century getting to know my spouse, and even after all this time, he continually surprises me with new attitudes and preferences. He is basically the same person, however, over the years his tastes in music, food choices and activities have varied.

My spouse has become more sentimental and more spiritual with the passing of time. He has mellowed about many of his previously rigid beliefs. I don’t think I will ever finish “knowing” him, because as long as we live, we will both continue to grow and change, as will the world in which we live.

The word “enough” suggests completion, finished, done. You never want to feel finished with getting to know your partner. You want to continue to communicate to the end of time, and in the process, continue to learn new things about each other to share, to please, to enjoy.

Communication is the main ingredient for a fulfilling relationship. Communication is also the way you continue to learn new and exciting things about your partner.

Life is lived out in phases. There is the “getting together” phase, the “creating and bringing up a family” phase, the “pursuing our interests” phase, and ultimately the retirement phase. Through it all, communication will keep you on the same page as you share your feelings about the moments and memories which make up your life together.

If you reach the point where you feel you know your partner enough, that could suggest you are taking your partner for granted. Taking for granted that you know how your partner thinks and feels can potentially cheat you of learning new and exciting things about him. You never want to stop being curious to know more about the partner you love and respect.

Getting to know your partner is a continual work in progress; an ongoing, pleasurable journey through life and you can never know “enough.”