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9 Ways to Keep the Romance Alive When You're Chronically Ill

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Hey there, hi there, ho there!

So in my last blog I discussed how sometimes people forget that life for the chronically ill person is far more difficult than a carer’s. I briefly touched on how relationships can dwindle from lovers to a carer-patient relationship when your signifiant other is acting as your carer. So, with that in mind, let’s look at some ways you and your partner can keep things romantic even when chronic illness tries to intervene. A lot of the things I’m going to talk about can be applied to any couple that may have let the romance die out a little.

1. Kiss.

Kiss gif

When you’ve been with someone a long time, sometimes you genuinely forget to kiss – even if you’re not chronically ill.

“Even just a quick touch of the lips.”

When you’re so busy concentrating on your illness and/or family life, it can be easy to forget to just stop and have a moment together.

2. Do something together at least once a month.

Whether it’s getting in some alcohol-free wine/beer, watching a romantic movie or having dinner together, make the time to spend a couple of hours together not talking about family, the illness, etc. Even a gentle stroll on the beach or through the woods while holding hands can be just enough to keep that flame a-flickering.

lady and the tramp sharing spaghetti

3. Go back to where you first met.

If it’s possible, go back to the place where you first clapped eyes on each other. Try and remember how you felt that day. Recreate your first date. Go to your friend’s house and have them help you get ready.

“Have your partner pick you up or meet you at the place where you had your first dinner/drink together.”

4. Do something nice for each other.

writing a love letter

It doesn’t have to be a birthday or a special occasion to do something nice for your significant other. It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture or anything expensive. Write a love letter and leave it somewhere for them to find. Make a playlist of all their favorite songs or songs that remind you of them. Run a bubble bath, light some candles and let them have some time to themselves.

5. Massages.

Get some nice oils, light some candles and help get those pesky knots out. Please do be careful if you’re massaging someone with a hypermobility syndrome – the last thing you want on your romantic night is to end up in the emergency room!

6. Go on a weekend break/holiday.

If you’re like me and are seriously affected by low pressures and crap weather, you might appreciate getting away to somewhere warm (but not humid). A nice week away to the Mediterranean can give you and your partner a break from pain and all the other symptoms associated with your condition.

vows gif

7. Renew your vows.

You don’t need to recreate your wedding day – unless you want to. You can simply organize to renew your vows with your priest/registrar/humanist. You can do it alone or just invite your close family and friends.

8. I love you.

Those three simple words should be said every day. Whether it’s first thing in the morning or last thing at night.

“Let your significant other know that they are loved.”

Just like kissing, sometimes it can be easy to forget to say it. Especially when brain fog is a factor of your illness. Set a reminder if you have to!

9. Sexy time.

sexy time gif

If you can do it and want to, go for it. Ninety percent of the time, us spoonies don’t feel sexy or attractive. Sometimes you gotta make yourself look good on the outside to help you feel better on the inside. Help yourself feel sexy by having your hair/makeup done. Have a relaxing bath, shave your legs (if you want), get into a nice nighty or pajamas. Do whatever makes you feel good about yourself. Sometimes after all that effort the last thing you want to do is the horizontal mambo, but if you still have some spoons left and you’re not in too much pain, use that last bit of energy to make lurve. Remember, you don’t necessarily have to “go all the way” – sometimes some heavy petting can be just as nice.

Till next time,

The Zebra Mom

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Originally published: February 3, 2017
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