Life as a couple can be as fun, as boring, or as desired by its protagonists. There is no Instagram-like algorithm to find the way to be “together forever”.
However, throughout these four years writing this column, I have found recommendations to make life as a couple a reality and not a utopia.
Today I will talk to you #sinrecato about the feared Coco monster in relationships. Do not be scared, this so-called monster is actually a simple recipe to live as a couple in a healthy way, and here I will tell you about it:
Communication: talking is one of the hardest walls to break in life as a couple. The point is to discuss, not to fight. As my mother used to say: “It is better to be red one moment than to be pale for the rest of your life”. That is why it is necessary to have uncomfortable conversations, it is the only way to resolve any situation; even if it is painful, it must be done.
Coherence: there is a very big difference between saying it and doing it. What makes us trustworthy as human beings is being honest and respectful. Be consistent and do what you say, otherwise, if you are not going to do it, do not say it at all.
Complicity: be husband and wife, spouses, lovers, partners, comrades. The most important thing about being a couple is to achieve together all those planned and unplanned dreams, and enjoy this journey that is called living together, with its gray and sunny days, otherwise, it makes no sense.
Irreconcilable differences: sometimes there are couples who love each other from the first day they see each other, although it sounds corny it is true. Yet sometimes that is not enough, and many circumstances separate them: a considerable generation gap (more than 20 years of difference), religion, economic position, culture and intellectual differences.
Perfect assembling: having good sex is not enough to be a couple; it is about connecting, innovating, surprising. I have always said it: sex is an amusement park with a VIP ticket to get on all the attractions and, best of all, it is free.
Details: in these times, being thoughtful has become synonymous with giving presents; being thoughtful is to be considerate, is to listen to each other, is to say the right word at the right time, is to flatter one another, is to congratulate each other for every achievement, for every effort. Being thoughtful is something priceless.
Reciprocity: initiative should not be one-sided, it should be demonstrated in an equitable way, because, inevitably, the one who insists will end up tired and the one who does not insist will be suffocated. It is necessary to learn to negotiate, because you will not always be on the same page.
Acceptance: if we accept virtues, we also accept defects, but it does not mean that this message is reduced to putting up with mistreatment, abandonment or humiliation. It is to recognize that human beings make mistakes, we are not perfect, but we can always change and unlearn everything that hurts the other.
Sometimes love is not enough, nor sex, nor economic stability to have a supposedly perfect life. Experts say that even when they meet randomly, couples are built.
The Uruguayan poet Mario Benedetti could not have said it better in his poem ‘Hagamos un trato’ [tr: ‘Let’s make a deal’]:
that you can count on me
not up to two
or even ten
but count on me.
If you ever
notice that I look into your eyes
And a streak of love
recognize in mine
do not alert the rifles
nor think that I am delirious
in spite of the streak
or maybe because it exists
you can count on me.
If at other times
you find me
unsociable for no reason
do not think ‘how lazy’
you can still count on me.
But let’s make a deal
I would like to count on you
it’s so nice
to know that you exist
one feels alive
and when I say this
I mean count
even if it is up to two
even if it is up to five
no longer for you to come to my aid
but to know certainly
that you know you can count on me”.
Traducción del español: Catalina Oviedo Brugés