Who initiates romance in a marriage?
I was not the romantic type when I got married to Carol. During our courtship, we had discussions on the pet name we should call ourselves. “Darling” was the pet name we finally agreed on. After our wedding on a Saturday in Benin City, Nigeria, we went to a holiday resort at Miango in Plateau State for our honeymoon. During the first two days of our honeymoon, if we wanted each other’s attention, one of us will say “are you there,” as if we were nameless people. On about the third day, Carol decided to break the ice; she called me for the first time “darling.”
To be frank with you, I did not enjoy it. I was very uncomfortable with it. I started saying to myself that if we do not call each other “darling” won’t people know that we are married? But you see, a romantic man would have been so happy to hear that word “darling” for the first time. But I was not naturally a romantic person. Instead, I was sad. But there was no reason for my being sad.
Each time she called me darling, I would say, “I am here.” Yet I loved her. It was after she had called me “darling” for two days without the energy of love being released from me that I knew that something was wrong with me. I felt I needed to help myself. One day, I made up my mind to do what was right. I made up my mind that the River Jordan of my mouth must part “thither and thither.” I forced myself to call her “darling” for the first time. To be frank with you, it was not easy at all, but I kept struggling to call her “darling” whether I liked it or not. I felt I needed to FORCE myself to do what was right.
After about a month or two, calling her darling became a part of my nature and I also loved to hear her call me “darling.” After some months of marriage, I started to overtake Carol as the initiator of romance and romantic moments. After thirty years of marriage, I initiate over eighty percent of our romance and romantic moments. When we stroll, it is me that initiates holding her hands or her waist and she responds. I initiate most of the kisses. I initiate her lying on the sofa with her head on my laps while watching television. Thank God she responds.
From what you can see, Carol was the more romantic at the beginning of our marriage. But she was never offended that I did not respond each time she called me “darling.” When I now overtook her as the initiator of romance, I tried not to blame her for my being more romantic than her. She never gave up on me and because I am not giving up on her, she is beginning to initiate some romantic moments again.
The problem with some couples is that when they make the first or second romantic moves towards their spouses and their spouses ignore them as I did to Carol, they will flare up or give up. They will keep blaming their spouses for not being romantic enough. No, that is not the best thing to do. The best thing is for the more romantic spouse to keep initiating romance and romantic moments. The patience of the more romantic spouse is likely to admit the unromantic spouse into the school of romance. Patience is the key. Be patient with your unromantic spouse. Love you.
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