Saturday, November 18, 2006

Keep the Home Fires Burning

Last week I asked for your ideas on how to keep your relationship alive during periods of forced separation. This is particularly relevant for military families given that last Saturday was Remembrance Day. Here is what Cathouse Teri had to say:

"I know the answer to this question. It is without a doubt what has already been mentioned. Communication and OFTEN. Phone calls, letters, emails ~ all good solutions. The more personal, the better. We tend to think that we shouldn't bother them (especially if they are at war) with the little silly things of our daily lives, but the truth is that they want nothing more than to hear about your day. If you communicate every day, you will tell about some mundane things, but it really is important to share all of it in order to stay close. I've lived it. I've seen it. I know it's true."

I agree, I agree, I agree. As I have said many times before on this site, relationships are strengthened when couples share positive experiences. Hearing about your "mundane" home life is very welcome for the person who has to be away. I might add, though, to be careful not to make the communication a constant stream of complaints and problems. Sure, share the challenges that are going on in your life as well, but try to make the experience a positive one for your partner.

I also love what NavyBride had to say on the subject:

"The key for us is that we never go to bed alone. During the day, both of us are so busy that it's easier not to miss each other. But when the time comes to turn out the light and fall asleep alone, that's the hardest. So, we got into the habit of tucking each other in, via email. For example, if I know that he's still awake when I go to bed, I'll send an email saying goodnight and promising to leave the covers turned down and the pillows fluffed for when he decides to join me. When he is finally able to sleep, he writes me back, telling me he's come to bed now, "kissing my cheek", and falling asleep.

It helps me to know that our normal bedtime routine is not interrupted by something as silly as thousands of miles. Even if it's only in our minds, we still tuck each other in every night. He feels cared for in an environment that is not typically nurturing, I feel protected even though I'm alone. Both of us know that we never, ever sleep alone."

What a great idea! Thanks again to everyone for contributing to this discussion.

1 comment:

  1. I agree, going to bed together is very effective in nurturing intimacy between a couple. In a previous post, some argument was made about separate sleeping spaces. It does seem to work for some.

    Some of the reason that I am so adamantly admonishing couples to remain in communication while separated is because I was a Navy wife. When we were separated, my husband only called (the situation was such that I couldn't really call him) when he had a problem to discuss, etc. Our relationship was already very strained and this very nearly slammed the door shut on it.