Many people feel distant from their spouse or partner at times. It can be a struggle to reconnect in our busy lives. While date nights may work to help some couples rekindle their connection, others find forced conversations to be awkward and disappointing. Many times, writing a text message, an email, or a quick Facebook message when you feel inspired throughout your day can be less stressful than scheduled face-to-face conversations. Writing allows partners to tackle sensitive topics on their own time, without worrying about being interrupted or shut down.
Emails are just one way to use your computer to connect with your partner. There are many other ways, too. Since so many of us spend several hours per day in front of our computers, it’s easy to spend just a few minutes on something that can help you build intimacy within your relationship. Here are five ways (besides emailing) to strengthen your connection from your keyboard:
1. Share your calendars
Many couples include a partner who feels anxious and distressed when the other partner’s schedule is unpredictable. A shared online calendar can be used to prevent arguments that arise when one person feels out of the loop.
2. Interact on social media
Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and other social media sites and apps are a way for many couples to connect when not physically together. Many couples joke around on social media with each other, or write romantic captions to pictures, even though they may be too wiped out to interact this way at the end of their workdays.
3. Exchange articles
So many couples feel that their relationship devolves, over time, into small talk or logistical planning.Sending each other links to interesting articles about what’s going on in the world can be a way to bond in a more intellectual way than you may have time to do in person.
4. Research fun activities
Going to the same place for your monthly or weekly date night may be comforting, but research shows that experiencing novelty together is more likely to trigger the dopamine rush associated with feelings of passionate love. Use your downtime at work to look up new restaurants, activities to do together, or future vacation destinations. Share these with your partner, or use them as surprises.
5. Get creative with gifts
When there is an upcoming anniversary, birthday, or no occasion at all, try to find your partner the most creative gift possible by using all the online tools at your disposal. EBay and Etsy have handmade, vintage, and one-of-a-kind gifts for very cheap. You could even commission a drawing of your partner on Fiverr for $5.The world is your oyster when looking for gifts online, versus the selection at the mall.
Instead of focusing on the ways that spending time on your computer can create distance in relationships, why not focus on all the ways that you can use your online time to bond with your partner on a deeper level? Share this article with your partner and discuss these ideas together as a first step toward rekindling your connection.
Dr. Samantha Rodman, founder of DrPsychMom.com, is a clinical psychologist and practices in Maryland. Preorder her forthcoming book 52 Emails to Transform Your Marriage for a year’s worth of emails to help reconnect with your partner.