PEOPLE CHANGE. Count on it! If you want to stay together, you must change together.
It has been said that change is the only constant in life. This is more true than most of us locked into our “comfort zone” want to admit. Nowhere is it more true than in marriage. We all grow and change every day in small undetectable ways at the beginning, then more so as time goes on. If we did not change, everyone would think there was something wrong with us. All living things grow and change with time. This is the process that leads to the thing called “maturity”. No one in a 40 year marriage thinks as they did at the beginning or wants the same things they did at the beginning.
Human beings are programmed by their creator for variety, discovery and adventure. This is why we do not eat the same foods every day, every week, or even every month. This is why our clothing fashions evolve with the seasons and our changing bodies. This is why we crave to go to places we have never been, and try new things we have never done before. This is why it is exciting to meet new people.
This is also the reason that explains why the number one justification for divorce or accepting a life of boredom is…. “we just grew apart”. This is where popular culture tells us that if “you no longer “FEEL” that common connection” to your spouse as you once did, and that you are no longer “happy”, well it is time to dump the old and look for the new. But, the problem with this solution is that the “new” will soon become "old" too. Then what? Another change of partners and new adventures on repeat?
It is easy to “grow apart”. This is the guaranteed result of two individual people living their individual lives with each other. As they change, they change differently, and “grow apart”. The secret is to grow together. Decide on life direction together. Stop doing the same old things in the same old way. Always look for new things and new ways to do things… BUT do them together! When you spend time together, you grow together AND at the same time you grow “together”. [Not a typo… think glue]
No matter how busy life gets with kids, mortgages, jobs, spending quality time together in new ways is crucial to the survival of your relationship. There will always be a less important thing to leave undone. Spending time together EVERY day must be a priority for every couple. This is even more true if you are apart for any length of time.
It is always easier to make a new marriage with the one you are with, than it is to waste time looking for some "one" new to start all over again with. Don’t ignore each other and think you will make it last. One of you will be in for a surprise.