The Whens and Hows of Re-Introducing
Romance into Your Love Relationship
By Susie and Otto Collins
As you and your partner begin to heal and rebuild trust
after infidelity has happened in your love relationship or
marriage, you might wonder when it's ok to lighten up the
mood and try a little romance.
After all, you probably don't want to give the impression
that you think flowers, candles and close dancing will solve
all of the problems that you two are sorting through right
On the other hand, if the bulk of your interactions with
your partner are all about "serious" stuff such as being
transparent and communicating more effectively and honestly,
the spark that might be
rekindling is not going to have a chance.
It can seem tricky to find that balance between doing the
"work" of addressing the challenges you two face AND opening
up to enjoying one another's company again in fun as well as
sensual and sexual ways.
We encourage you to keep striving to find that balance.
Paul and Jackie have been diligent about their relationship
for the past few months as they try to put their
relationship back together again after Jackie's affair.
They have been meeting with a relationship coach both
individually and together and they are
putting in practice the new skills they are learning.
They are both feeling more at ease in one another's company.
The infidelity seems to be fading into the past more and
more each day-- their emotional wounds seem to be less raw
But Paul and Jackie are still holding back. They have been
sleeping in separate bedrooms as they rebuild trust and
they've not had a purely romantic date night since long
before Jackie's affair.
While the idea of opening up to romance in their
relationship again is appealing to both Paul and Jackie,
neither is sure that it is the "right time" yet.
And neither knows when that time will be.
When to be romantic again....
There is no set in stone answer to the question, "When is it
time to infuse our healing relationship with romance again?"
This is why developing more honest and open communication
with your partner is so important. Keep the conversation
about romance, sensuality and sexuality ongoing.
Check in with yourself frequently about what you feel ready
to try and what you aren't wanting at this time.
Share this information with your mate in a way that makes it
clear that this is how you feel right now; it is not
necessarily how you will feel in the future.
Concern yourself mostly with what you want and what your
partner wants for your relationship in terms of romance at
this time and not with what you think is "appropriate" for a
couple healing after an affair.
Paul brings up the topic of romance with Jackie one
afternoon. He tells her that he'd really like to set aside
their "work" for an evening and just go out together and
This a welcome suggestion for Jackie to hear.
They both know that they will continue to use the techniques
and skills they are learning, even when watching a movie or
going dancing-- but the main intention will be to have fun
together and open up to romance.
As you talk with your partner about where you are in regard
to romance, sensuality and sexuality, be honest and clear
and stay open as well.
Allow the spark that might be rekindling for you and your
partner to glow.
How to be romantic again...
Once you and your partner have agreed that you are both
willing to allow your healing relationship to go to this
next level, you might find yourself feeling shy or awkward.
It may even seem like it's your first date all over again!
This can be a wonderful thing. Let yourself discover your
Look at him or her from a fresh perspective and appreciate
what you like.
Ask questions to learn more about makes your partner's toes
tingle and heart sing. This might have changed over the
You might revisit some activities or ways of being close
that you used to share, or you could experiment and find new
Let yourself be swept away in a moment of connecting.
Tapping into romance doesn't mean that you and your partner
won't continue to work on the issues you've been working on.
In fact, you'll probably find that your sensual and sexual
connecting is deeper and closer than before as you learn to
communicate more effectively and as trust grows.
Stay open and continue to tune in to yourself to listen to
what feels good to you.
Listen to your partner and let the romance unfold one moment
at a time.