Yikes - it's been so cold here in Christchurch over the last couple of weeks - I don't remember a winter this cold. And it seemed to arrive suddenly, following a summer that went on and on, and seemed to skip autumn completely.
One thing about the weather going bad is that we are likely to wind up spending more time in close confines with our significant others. Hopefully that can be a good thing. So if the cold snap continues, make the most of the situation. Or if your relationship is not that important to you, work your way through the points below - and you can be sure that you'll likely wind up out in the cold, as you'll have wrecked your relationship well and truly.
1) Don't prioritise your relationship. Attend to everything else first: career, kids, friends, hobbies, sports, chores. Then maybe if there is still a little bit of time left, spend it with your partner. But keep any conversation brief and superficial.
2) When you really have an issue with your partner about something? Really go after them, be angry, use "The Tone," be defensive and don't show any real interest in hearing their perspective. Then, just to be really sure, throw in some sarcasm, and even some eye-rolling for good measure.
3) Then, when you recognise that things are going bad between the two of you, don't actually signal this to your partner. When the two of you are together, act as though there is nothing wrong. If they want to raise this with you, "I'm fine, thank you" is a good come-back, but it's best said crisply, and with no eye contact. Then, if you haven't already,
4) start to turn outside of the relationship for emotional support - start confiding in someone else (someone that you work with is usually good for this - it's convenient, you don't have to look too far), and be sure to tell them frequently how hard things are at home for you right now. Secret texting with them is a good way of keeping the support going outside of work hours. And if you wind up having sex with that person because "they really understand me", hey, even better....
4) When there has been an issue or some point of conflict between the two of you, and it's not resolved, give them the silent treatment. Even if they talk to you, pretend they don't even exist - keep this going as long as you can. Then you'll be really showing them, and let's face it, maturity can sometimes be a bit over-rated.
5) Blame your partner for all the difficulties in the relationship, to them personally, but also to anyone else who will listen. Sure, we know there are two of you in the relationship, but your partner just has so many more issues than you, right?
6) Threaten to finish the relationship. Do this a lot - no matter how minor or workable the issues might be. Who really wants to go the distance anyway - it's just easier to start again. And again....
Hopefully you're not doing any of this stuff - but you'd be surprised how common these behaviours are. If even a couple of these are sneaking in, it's time to both roll your sleeves up, and start to seriously address things. Even with some of these going on, relationships can usually be salvaged and repaired, if both partners are committed. And of course, getting yourselves into therapy might be an important part of the repair process.
Please feel free to contact me if you need any help with these issues, or any others.
"Some occasional thoughts about families, relationships, and other things that distract us...."