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I've lost that loving feeling. Now what do I do?

Updated on July 17, 2013

"We've been together for 18 years & I don't know why anymore.

I hear this a lot. Many couples that have been together for a number of years, feel that they have nothing in common anymore. They are like two ships that pass in the night. The passion is gone and the kids are grown. And now they don't know why they are still together. So, what do they do with their lives now? How do you get that loving feeling back?

Well...It takes some work. But, it is possible to put the love and passion back into your relationship. In relationships, your attitude as well as your actions are important. Once you realize this and act upon it, you will be able to live your life with more enthusiasm, compassion, integrity and honesty. This in turn, will breath new life into your relationship. So, here are some steps to take to put a song back in your heart!

You own it.

Own your part in the relationship. You're not a martyr or a victim who is suffering in this relationship due to a partner who isn't good enough. Once you stop playing this role and realize that you are a powerful and competent force in the relationship, you can start to make a change for the positive.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Be vulnerable. Allow yourself to want, hope and dream. Lay your heart out on the line and dare to get what you want. Tell your partner what you need. Our partner's can not read our minds, as much as we would like to think they can or should. The alternative is to keep your heart closed (and your mouth) and never be open to receiving what you want. Don't let fear keep you from living.

Acceptance is the key.

Be approachable. Let your partner know that you are not judgemental and you are open to hear his/her feelings and ideas. When you meet in the middle, you make progress and have a better chance of keeping your relationship together.

Turn back time.

Get into that time machine and go back to when you first met. What was it that attracted you to each other? Focus on the good things about your partner and the qualities that you admire in him/her. These are the things that helped your relationship evolve to love.

You're better than sliced bread.

Find creative ways to tell your partner how great they are! Whenever you feel like being critical of your partner, stop and say something uplifting instead. By promoting his/her self-esteem you are creating an atmosphere of love and acceptance. And when that happens, your partner will want it to continue and will reciprocate!

Honesty is the best policy.

Let's be mature and act like adults. Too many times, we throw those words out the door and act like little kids when our feelings are hurt. Don't say hurtful things to your partner because you are in the heat of an argument. Stop and figure out just what it is that is aggravating you and communicate those things in a rationale way to your partner. Be honest about your feelings and concentrate on the current problem, not crap from 3 years ago.

A needle in a haystack.

Do you ever feel like your partner is just never happy with anything you do? Do they pick at everything and find something wrong? Many times our partners start arguments about one thing, and what they are really upset about is something else. You can help by remaining calm and asking a few clarifying questions. Like..."Are you really angry that I left the toilet seat up or is there something else bothering you?" Really listen to him/her and be open. You never know what you may find out.

What's more important? Right or Happy?

There is an old saying that goes like this...If you keep on doing what you've always done, you'll keep on getting what you've always got! That means, you can't keep saying the same old things, acting the same old way, and thinking the same old things and expect anything to change. If you do, that means you are insane! Instead of trying to prove over and over again that your partner is wrong, why not try something new like tolerance and compassion? Turn an understanding ear to your partner instead of a hostile one and show him/her you are receptive to hearing their thoughts and feelings. When you decide to be happy instead of right, you create a positive arena for change.

Set boundaries.

Don't make idle threats, when you argue. Trying to manipulate and control your partner to get your way in an argument is not allowed! We all say stupid things when we are angry. Make a promise to each other that you won't go there!

What you think about, you bring about!

When you let negative thoughts about yourself, your partner or your life consume you...that is exactly what you will get! If you expect your relationship to fail...then fail it will. Make a conscious effort to bring more positive thoughts into your life. Expect life to be good! Expect your relationship to be filled with love and passion!

Dream It! Believe It! Achieve It!


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    • Whidbeywriter profile image

      Mary Gaines 6 years ago from Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island, Washington

      Excellent hub - very powerful and helpful info. Blessings!

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 6 years ago from The Beautiful South

      I think also a problem we have all read about is men being jealous of their wife's attention all on the children and then too many women only live for their children, and never let go. No one could have loved their children more than I did and I was called over protective of them but I knew my life was with my husband and my children would grow up and leave and I didn't want responsibility of them forever. Marriages get harder as years go on but with the dangers of diseases I would think it would be worth while to work things out and make your second chance your best one.

    • profile image

      Justsilvie 7 years ago

      Excellent article, Lisa.

    • Lisa M Smith profile image

      Lisa Smith 7 years ago from Coupeville, WA

      Hello Brett,

      Thank you for your thoughts and opinions. I believe people can change IF they WANT to. But, sometimes people don't want to change. If your partner just doesn't "get it" then maybe it's time to move on. Life is too short to remain in a relationship that doesn't make you happy. If you feel that you have done everything you can to make it work from your side and your partner doesn't want to work on the relationship or make any changes, you shouldn't have to suffer through for years.

    • profile image

      Brett 7 years ago

      What if your partner just doesn't "get it". The partner thinks they have been a great part of the relationship when truly they have not contributed financially or responsibly to it. The only thing that was contributed was love and deceipt. How will sitting down and talking to this person about the same things year after year make a difference. PEOPLE DO NOT CHANGE! Best to move on than drag it out.

    • Lisa M Smith profile image

      Lisa Smith 7 years ago from Coupeville, WA

      Hello World-Traveler. I agree with you. I think too many people go into relationships and think that they don't have to work at them. In this day and age, many people think of relationships as disposable. If this one doesn't live up to their dreams, they just look for another. I've been married for 20 years and it has taken a lot of work, but it's so worth it.

    • World-Traveler profile image

      World-Traveler 7 years ago from USA

      For many guys, the passion goes out the window when the Testosteron count drops or is no longer existent at all because of the process of aging. The wisdom of remaining together is obvious to men with wisdom; companionship, a history of past experiences shared, and the future of many more positive experiences yet to be experienced- together.

      It is unfortunate that wisdom is lost in the education system of many of our middle and high schools. If both young men and women had a better understanding of biology and hormonal influences on thinking there would probably be fewer divorces and broken hearts.