6 tips: Dont let retirement ruin your relationship
Yes, sooner or later this will happen to everyone: leaving work, retiring, having lots of free time and … the constant presence of a husband or wife at home with you. And this, as many people suddenly find out for themselves, can be a serious test. Psychologist explains what is worth taking to maintain a strong and warm relationship.
After many years of work, you can finally relax and not rush anywhere in the morning. You probably feel relieved, enthusiastic, anxious and a little sad. And you also understand that retirement means the prospect of spending much more time at home with your spouse. At first, it pleases, but week after week passes, and the picture of joint gatherings in the kitchen or in front of the TV ceases to be so rosy.
Retirement can really make marriage very difficult, even relatively tough. For many years you kept balance, and now suddenly the balance is upset. In my therapeutic practice, I have met quite a few couples who survived this difficult period. Here are the recommendations that I most often give to my clients.
1. BE PATIENT – Dont let retirement ruin your relationship
The last months before and the first after the completion of a career in terms of emotions can compare with real roller coasters. Even if you have been waiting for this moment for a long time, this does not cancel strong stress and the appearance of the most unexpected thoughts and feelings associated with it.
In fact, retirement is as significant a turning point in life as a wedding or the birth of a child. Joy in this case is always associated with anxiety and high internal stress. Therefore, show a little more sympathy for each other than usual, especially if you both retired not so long ago.
2. OBSERVE CHANGES IN YOUR THOUGHTS, FEELINGS, AND BEHAVIOR. – Dont let retirement ruin your relationship
Did you find yourself suddenly drinking more, shopping more often and getting upset over trifles? What about your spouse? These may be signs that it was too difficult for one of you or both of you to start a new life after retirement or, as a result of these events, your relationship is changing.
If you notice such changes, be sure to pay more attention to your usual healthy ways to overcome stress and / or try new ones: keeping a diary, meditation techniques or religious practices, field trips or visiting a therapist who will help overcome the crisis. Offer the same to your partner if you notice that he has similar problems.
Make arrangements to take walks during which you will take turns talking about how you feel and how you experience your retirement. It is essential to divide the time equally so that the first half of the walk is spoken by one partner, and the other on the way back. Do not interrupt each other so that everyone can speak out and be heard. Give advice and comments only when the partner directly asks for it.
3. DO NOT MAKE CARDINAL DECISIONS
During the period of emotional storms, it is very important to avoid sudden movements when making serious life decisions. You may start violent quarrels, they will occur one after another for several months, and then there will be a temptation to come to terms with the fact that marriage is not viable.
A sudden decrease in income can also scare one of the spouses, and he will probably want to radically change his lifestyle and / or move to a place where the cost of living is lower.
Such sentiments can become a source of serious conflict. Take your time to act and promise each other that you will not make important decisions for a certain period of time (ideally, from six months to a year). Over time, possible options can be discussed among themselves and with specialists in a particular field.
4. DO NOT EXPECT A PARTNER TO ENTERTAIN YOU – Dont let retirement ruin your relationship
Your spouse has his own activities and activities to which he has been devoting time every day for many years. Respect each other’s habits when you retire and both end up at home. Take some time to find out how the partner likes to spend his days and to understand what you like to do yourself. If each of you has an idea of your own preferences, it will be easier for you to find ways to coordinate your schedules so that they suit everyone.
5. RE-DISCOVER YOURSELF AND YOUR OWN INTERESTS
Many people are so absorbed in work for years that they forget how they like to spend their free time. Perhaps you once abandoned your favorite, but time-consuming or time-consuming hobbies (for example, baking, playing a musical instrument, gardening) for simpler activities that remain at the end of a long working day (for example, watching TV).
Now that you no longer need to work, it’s time to think about how you really are interested in spending leisure time. What pleases you, what have you always wanted to do? Look for actions that will be productive and bring you pleasure or a sense of meaning. Be prepared to surprise yourself, rediscover yourself. This is a gift for both you and your partner, whom your new activity can inspire – so much that he even wants to take part in it.
6. BE CURIOUS AND SUPPORT EACH OTHER
Husband and wife, who have lived together for a long time, can easily assume that they have studied each other thoroughly. Unfortunately, this leads to a loss of curiosity and openness, which ultimately strangles you and your marriage. It is boring and tiresome always to predict the behavior of a partner and assume that he or she will never change. Such an attitude may even be counterproductive, as our changes often go unnoticed and underestimated.
Give each other more space to rest. Remember that you spent many hours of life apart while working, and therefore there are probably many things in your partner’s life that you don’t know about. Assume that your spouse continues to change, cultivate in yourself a curiosity about what and how is happening to him or her. Look for ways to support and encourage each other to make your retirement years as happy as possible for both of you.