Marital drift is a common concept among marriage therapists. When couples aren’t proactive about securing their marriages, the stressors of life fragment the relationship and distance creeps in. Unfortunately, the distance places the marriage at risk for intrusive elements like extramarital affairs, and many couples are caught off guard because they have been too busy to notice how distant they have become.
I encourage constant and consistent attention and effort to the marital relationship. The holiday season is a great time to renew commitment with a gift you and your spouse can use together. Here are my 2016 picks:
Note: I have no affiliation in any way with any of these sellers and can’t endorse trade with any individual websites.
- My top pick is the Picnic Backpack. Picnics ooze romance—unless you happen to have a bunch of kids underfoot. I like the idea of going on a hike and finding an impromptu picnic spot. I may or may not recommend taking a picnic to a ski resort in the summer to listen to the symphony outdoors where your husband may or may not fall asleep and start snoring loudly in the middle of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 overture–with cannons–defeating the whole purpose of the outdoor concert (which just goes to show he may really not hear that baby in the middle of the night).
- While you are on your picnic, you can languidly lounge in your Double Hammock. For an added challenge, try getting in and out without poking each other’s eyes out or dislocating something.
- For rainy days, here’s the Double Umbrella, because nothing says love like walking side by side in a frigid downpour, armed with an unwieldy yet water-repellent implement. For the daring, try a romantically suggestive Heart Umbrella. I’m pretty sure my husband would only stand under this one if I am holding the handle–because masculinity–but I do think the red heart might liven things up (Read here for an interesting study about how red enhances men’s attraction to women, in another social science research installment of Whaaaa???).
- For literary nerds, I recommend the Fill-in Love Sonnets. This is perfect if you are married to someone like my husband, who refuses to pen a simple verse, but will play along in Mad-Libs fashion by filling in the blanks. To my husband’s credit, there was that one verse that one time on a card with flowers that read, “Roses are red, violets are blue, I don’t write poetry, so quit bugging me about it.” That’s true love, people!
- When I came across this Handblown Wishing and Gratitude Globe, I loved the idea of tucking away a weekly note of appreciation to a spouse and then reading them at the end of the year. Appreciation generates positive feelings for both parties.
- For a unique gift, consider the Personalized Connect 4 Heart Game. I have learned that my husband is always more interested if I can turn something into a friendly competition. Scoring several hearts in a row might not seem like the most compelling contest, but I can always think of some type of added incentive to maintain interest. My husband recently sent me a text that read, “You are so competitive and type A” which Siri interpreted as “You are so competitive in Taipei” (read more about Siri and her twisted communication antics here); only a competitive person would make such a comment, but that’s us keeping it real.
- Why not start the new year with the Date Night Bucket List, complete with prompts for date night ideas? Husbands, I’m looking at you—I promise you will score lots of points for planning date night, babysitter included.
- Now for my soapbox on the importance of physical affection: I ordered the Kisstixx a few years ago. The lip balms are designed to work together with two compatible flavors that mix when you kiss. I recommend the fire & ice variety, but mostly because “fire & ice,” sounds more passionate than “raspberry & lemonade.” If you want to get really crazy, give the gift of kissing along with the Car Travel Inflatable Mattress, because if we are being honest, the gear selector shiftie thingie is NOT AT ALL comfortable.
- I have mentioned before that I am the owner of several “love journals,” but this one is a favorite of mine because it is short and sweet.
- Dual Heat ANYTHING. I don’t have a link because these products can be found in so many varieties and locations, but these items have pretty much saved my marriage. When my husband says, “Let’s turn up the heat,” he is not referring to the thermostat. We are in a constant cold (hot?) war. Him: “It’s like a sauna in here!” Me: “Are you kidding me? I’m freezing!” Now, I can fall asleep on my heated mattress pad, under my heated blanket while my husband is luxuriating in his frosty paradise on the cool side of the pillow. Worth every penny.
Lastly, for the apathetic, there is a disturbingly realistic greeting card on Etsy that reads, “There is nobody else I’d rather lie in bed and look at my phone next to.” At least it’s a start.
And on that note, stay tuned for my next blog post entitled, “Mistress, thy name is cell phone.”
SHIFT THE DRIFT. HAPPY HOLIDAYS.
Copyright: innervisionpro / 123RF Stock Photo