Menu
Psychology articles
Why divorcees make great partners
Is your relationship past its expiry date?
What does it mean if he keeps photos of his ex?
Is your man in love with you?
Perfume as a seduction tool
Facebook and divorce
How to mend a broken heart
The thin line between love and hate
12 things men think we know
How to deal with a bipolar family member
4 signs that you're too dependent on your partner
Get serious - not serial
Is he more likely to cheat during pregnancy?
Are you a love addict?
Surviving sports fever
EX-cruciating exes
The friends you don't want
The key to a balanced relationship
Does your man have “Peter Pan” syndrome?
Five tips to get out of a relationship rut
Get married, stay married, live longer
Together for love or convenience?
How to be your own best friend
Staying sane when living with family
Bonding activities for couples
What often happens in relationships, especially those which last for a long time, men and women tend to become comfortable with and around each other. This doesn’t sound like a bad thing.

But what happens when they become too comfortable?

According to sexpert Julie Elledge, when men and women become too comfortable in a relationship, they try to pull the bonding into their favoured style.

During the first stages of a relationship, one usually tries to impress the other and the other way around. For example: a woman won’t mind to go and see a movie like Terminator with her man since she wants to make him happy. Elledge states that once a woman begins to feel more secure and comfortable, she regards his choice of movie as a failure to think of them first.

Once a couple commits to each other, the woman expects her man to put her needs and desires first. Elledge says that bonding preferences can lead to unnecessary misunderstandings between couples when they struggle to accept that men and women are not the same.

There is a reason why “men are from Mars and women from Venus” is a cliché.

Different sexes: different bonding preferences

Elledge reveals that most women prefer to bond by simply looking at her man’s facial expressions and body language in order to understand and recognise his needs. In other words, face-to-face bonding.

On the other hand, a man rather prefers to do things with his girlfriend. He wants to share experiences with her. A woman is an emotional being by nature, so she wants to be understood.

As men and women are extremely different beings, Elledge says that to love another person requires that each person in the relationship stretch outside his or her comfort zone so that the connection between them will continue to grow.

Don’t just watch television together, do fun things!

Stretching outside the comfort zone isn’t always easy. But if you and your man are stuck in a bonding rut, and tired of watching Masterchef together as a way to bond, try to do the following things instead of simply watching television or dining together:

Play games

Like Twister, card games, Monopoly and poker...maybe even strip-poker? Playing a game means you speak to each other, spend time with one another, instead of just passively being on the couch together.

Learn to cook

If one partner always does the cooking, try to cook a fancy dinner together. Try out new recipes and take charge of one course each. This can even lead to a romantic evening with candles, wine and strawberries and cream.

Volunteer at a nursing home or an animal welfare society.

Plant flowers and plants or simply water the garden together.

Make an effort to visit nearby tourist sites

Never been to the top of Table Mountain? Or had a picnic in Durban Botanical Gardens? Now’s the time to explore together. If your budget is tight, try museums; entrance fees are usually minimal if not free.

Go for a picnic or walk the dogs.

A woman doesn’t always have to shop alone, take your man along and shop for both of you.

If you live at the coast, go to the beach and take a long stroll.

Join the local gym and try to exercise regularly

If gym fees are too high, start by jogging together – it’s a great way to get to know your own neighbourhood.

Try to take a bath or shower together, even if it’s once a week.

Go for a massage

But make sure you book a couple’s massage so you and your man are being massaged simultaneously. It will help the both of you to relax and get rid of stress.

Decide on one night during the week where there will be no television

This will ensure that he will not be glued to the television remote and the two of you will be able to communicate without the intervention of reality shows, sports and soaps.

Join him in the things that he enjoys even if you really don’t want to

Bonding opportunities are endless and many of them won’t cost you and your man a cent. If your man really wants to watch an important rugby match on a Saturday instead of walking the dogs with you, stretch out of your comfort zone and join him.

He will be pleased and the connection between the two of you will definitely grow. Who knows, maybe next time he will accompany you to do shoe shopping!

Print
How to have a fight-free holiday
How to deal with an obsessed ex lover
Living together before marriage
WIN! with The Bedroom!
She asked ME to marry HER...
How to identify an abusive relationship
Help, I'm afraid to leave my abusive man
When jealousy turns scary
Dealing with a jealous sister-in-law
Make your partner feel special
The tao of relationships
WIN! with Virgin Pleasures!
Relationships: the chemistry myth
When your partner has intimacy issues
The art of letting go
Relationships 101
How to cope with a moody partner
Relationships: cutting the ties
Sexy Ever After
Why is he different around his friends?
Friends like these...
I want kids but my partner doesn't
Relationships: making it work
Relationships: weathering the storms
A 30-something’s take on dating
What we can learn from men
The Ex-Files
How to handle a toxic friend
Menu
How to handle a bragging friend
When your mother-in-law moves in
Frogs or princes?
Are you qualified for a relationship?
At what age should you get married?
Help! He cheated with my best friend
Lies men tell us
10 Signs he’s a keeper
Why married women have affairs
Guy friends: the other kind of boyfriend
Are you involved with a narcissist?
Women's surnames - keep hers? Take his?
Can you have too many friends?
What DO men want?
Helping a friend through cancer
Bonding activities for couples
How to get more help at home...
Help! I think he might be gay
How to help a suicidal friend
Five little white lies we tell men
How to know when it’s time to go
He was abused - will he be abusive too?
I kissed a girl
Should you take an ex back?