#Love & Sex
How to Stop Being Taken for Granted in Your Relationship
by Jennifer Lafferty
When you’re in a long-term relationship, it’s likely that at some point you will start to feel taken for granted. Don’t bail just yet; there are a bunch of easy ways you can get your partner to appreciate you again, whether it means being a little less available or developing your own distinctive identity. Here are 10 simple tips to avoid being taken for granted by your partner.
Before we dive into this list of easy and creative ways you can get your partner to start paying attention again, let’s not forget the most obvious one: Talk to him. It’s not always easy, but if you can sit down and actually communicate your concerns, you may resolve the issue without playing any games. But, if you’re not quite ready to have the talk, try these simple approaches:
Don’t break plans to hang out with them
While you shouldn’t constantly ditch your SO, it’s important to make it clear that you’re not at their beck and call. If your partner asks you out on short notice, when you’re not feeling up to it, or when you already have other plans—let them know you’re busy, as a subtle reminder that your life doesn’t revolve around him or her. Just because you’re in a relationship doesn’t mean you can’t still play hard to get. If your partner assumes you’re always available, occasionally turning them down for a date reminds them that they don’t own you or your time. This is especially valid if you’re the kind of girl to cave in and go to things you aren’t really interested in for the sake of your SO’s ego.
Have your own interests
Whether it’s classes, volunteering or simply spending time with friends and family, having your own priorities demonstrates that you are busy and independent, two things that are sure to keep your partner interested. Get involved in projects that will put you in the spotlight, such as community theater, singing lessons, developing artistic skills, giving speeches or hosting a big event. It’s a great confidence booster, and developing your own hobbies and interests is vital for a healthy relationship.
Take a trip with your friends
Sometimes, spending entirely too much time together or letting relationships with your friends suffer can lead to your partner taking you for granted. Leaving your SO behind while you go on a trip with pals is a good way to remind them that you’re company is a privilege, not a right. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right?
Get dressed up for yourself
Listen, we’re not straight-up advocating making your partner jealous, but going out of your way to look nice when you don’t have a date with him or her is sure to catch their attention. Not only is it a reminder that there is a whole world of people to appreciate your beauty, but making an effort to look your best is a great way to remind yourself you’re worthy of all the love and affection.
Take time for yourself
If your partner is preoccupied in bed, playing video games, watching YouTube videos, etc, do NOT go out of your way to initiate a snuggle-fest. Nothing kills your vibe faster than trying to be sexy or fun with somebody who just really isn’t feeling it right now. Finish the book you’ve been reading, catch up on whatever TV show you want, or take a nice, long bath. Sometimes putting your needs first is the best way to catch a negligent partner’s attention.
Let them initiate physical contact
If you’re in the habit of initiating physical contact, try to let your partner make the first move for a while. This also goes for other non-physical forms of intimacy—if you’re the first to call, the first to text, the first to apologize, hold back for a while.
Know your worth
At the end of the day, if none of these work, it may be more than a communication problem or the usual ups-and-downs of relationships. If you feel like you’re not getting the attention or treatment you deserve from your partner, it may be time to call it off and take some time to spoil yourself.