Irrespective of what every male buddy of yours tells you, women don’t actually voice out problems as soon as they spot one. They drop massive hints through their behaviour in hopes that you’d notice, and usually, become frustrated when you don’t. By the time, they blow up, it is already too late for you to say anything and whatever you say will end up being the wrong thing because, for you, the problem has just begun to exist, while they have had time to analyse every aspect of it, including the solution probably.
Heavens save you when that happens, but here are a few things that will keep you from reaching there for a while.
1. Be in-tune with her.
Women have needs too — most of it, emotional. Pay attention to them and sometimes, try making the attention felt. Paying attention is not synonymous with expensive gestures. Sometimes, it is as simple as stopping your work when she is around and spending time with her. You only have to ask and really be willing to listen — just like that, she’ll tell you everything she’s been dying to tell you for weeks.
2. Gifts are not just for dating.
Here is what a special gift means: It tells her that you still think of her after being with her for so long. It tells her that she is worth being spent on. It tells her she is loved and valued. Everyone loves gifts — and they don’t even have to be overly-expensive or even routinely. Just enough to count, and just enough to be special. It could be something to add to her stamp-collection or it could be a new pair of shoes. Whatever the gift, it has to be her specific. Don’t try gifting her that hideous-looking Doremon T-shirt just to tickle your sense of humor, she might force a laugh, but you will have to pay for it later on. Yes, that is a fair warning.
3. Don’t fake it till you make it — relationships don’t roll that way.
Pretending self-assuredness, confidence, and other enviable traits work in most areas of life but not here. The right way to do it is by being yourself and your true self at that. If you are uncomfortable with anything, say it. If you don’t understand her, ask her — she will gladly explain. If you think she is The One, it might be a good idea to let her know. If she is not, that’s another good idea to clear it and save all the hassle for both yourselves.
Show her your real self — she will treasure the fact that you open up to her while you maintain a stoic exterior for most of the world. However, that’s not a ticket to douche-dom. Be nice. To everyone, but especially her.
4. Let there be space.
Yes, it is good to share your thoughts. Yes, it’s good to do things together. But it’s also a good idea to maintain a healthy sense of space in certain aspects. Have some activities that you have all to yourself, and most importantly, let her have the same kind of space to pursue her own individuality. Making her felt needed is really nice and sweet, but being needy will quickly annoy her and you will find yourself listening to crickets, all by your own, very soon.
Being a good partner does not mean you do each and everything as a cutesy couple. A healthy relationship begins with a healthy you and a healthy her — and a little space will go a long, long way.
5. Don’t try changing her.
When you fell in love with her, it was because of who she was. Most people in their relationships make the mistake of trying to “fix” what they don’t approve. Don’t ask her to tone down her laugh and loudness just because it attracts a lot of (male) attention. Don’t suddenly expect your quiet woman to miraculously turn into a party-throwing crowd-pleasing host just because all your friends’ partners are like that.
Similarly, it is expected of things to change as and how she navigates her life. Don’t expect her to still talk-and-walk the same way as she did when you first met her.
6. Accept the ever-shifting nature of your relationship.
In continuity with the above, as you accept her, you have to acknowledge what the changes in both of you mean for your relationship. She is not one of those passing-flings anymore — naturally, the rules of then don’t apply now. As time proceeds she might expect you to make her the biggest priority. You might decide that you are ready to raise kids. She might decide she wants to be with another woman. Things can change anytime — unless you accept them, they are going to roll you over and leave you alone.