In new relationships, there is the “new” feeling that everyone loves.
There’s a scientific explanation for it. It’s a chemical released by the brain that gives us those warm, fuzzy feelings when we first meet someone new and the relationship gets off to a great start.
Unfortunately, those “new” feelings tend to wear off, especially when the relationship isn’t new anymore. How can you keep the “new” feeling alive, even after your relationship has passed the “mature” mark?
Dear Dan and Jennifer,
My girlfriend and I have been seeing each other for 3 years now. We were both virgins when we started dating. Well, about a year ago. I caught her seeing another guy. We broke up but still talked and remained friends. She went through 3 other guys after that and had sex with every one of them. I told her to take it slow with every guy she dated. After a while I asked her why she was rushing into bed with each guy she dated. She told me she was excited to have this “new feeling”. This worries me considering we have been back together for a month after working things out.
So my question is how do I keep this new feeling with her so she doesn’t find some one else again?
- Seth, Michigan
Keep it exciting
One of the biggest reasons that the “new” feeling is lost is that one or both partners start to get comfortable. This can be expressed in a variety of different ways, including wearing flannel pajamas instead of lingerie or burping in front of her after a cold beer. Some people stop working out or stop caring about their image as much, causing their partner to become less physically attracted to them.
Regardless of how it is expressed, however, getting comfortable can kill a “new relationship” buzz in no time. You can keep your relationship exciting by trying your best to avoid getting comfortable. Do everything you would do if you had just met your partner.
If you wouldn’t dream of picking your wedgie in front of a girlfriend you’ve had for two weeks, don’t do it in front of your girlfriend of six months or even a year. Would you buy flowers for your new girlfriend? Buy them for your girlfriend of three months too. If you’re a lady, would you dare let your brand new boyfriend see you without a stitch of makeup or after you haven’t shaved your legs for three weeks? Don’t let your boyfriend of eight months see you like that either!
Take the time and effort to do everything as you would for a new boyfriend or girlfriend and you can keep the relationship exciting.
Searching for the high…
Some people, known as serial daters, are in constant search of that chemical high they get when they’re with someone new. Unfortunately, serial daters don’t know this is why they date someone and break up with them, date someone and break up with them, etc. To a serial dater, each boyfriend or girlfriend had a legitimate reason or fault for the break up.
This usually is a destructive pattern and leads to the serial dater feeling like no relationship will ever work out for them. If you suspect you might be a serial dater, you can seek counseling to help you deal with the bigger issues at hand. If you’re the victim of a serial dater, especially if he or she keeps coming back to you after a string of other partners, you might want to move on.
Trying to get them to realize what is happening is a lost cause, because they won’t see it no matter how many times you point it out to them. If a serial dater breaks up with you, especially if it’s the third, fourth or fifth time, move on and find someone who can commit.
While it takes work, you can keep the “new” feeling alive for as long as you put the effort in. Try your best to stay on your toes and avoid getting comfortable. Treat your partner like you just met them last week and enjoy your relationship day by day.