Opinion: Relationships Can Be Exciting Even When They Are Long-Term

Stacy Ann

Photo byfrank mckenna/Unsplash

Recently I was watching Sex Life on Netflix, which infuriated me to no end for various reasons.

The part (and there were many) that baffled me the most is that the show claimed that you could not have excitement and thrills in a relationship and have security.

I know that this isn’t true because I will marry someone who gives me both even after years of living together and going through the mundane parts of life.

Trust me, as a former seeker of the butterflies, they always were short-lived and brought more pain than joy. It wasn’t until being with my fiance that I realized there was different kind of butterflies, ones that wouldn’t end in heartbreak.

These are the indicators that you are experiencing the “healthy” butterflies in your relationship.

#1. You feel comfortable and excited instead of anxious and unsure

Over cocktails with one of my best friends, Sarah, the topic came up of Steven's guy that she had been seeing off and on for a few months.

“When we are together, I am so into him, and I seriously get butterflies in my stomach when I see his name, but… it’s been such a roller-coaster.”

We continued to talk, and Sarah revealed that she felt anxious and unsure of how Steven felt about her when they weren't together. He didn’t want to be in a relationship, and she felt like she was only staying because of the rush she got.

Sarah’s situation is one that I knew all too well. It wasn’t until much later in life that I realized that the butterflies' anxiety and uncertainty were not a result. It was of being in a toxic relationship. You should feel comfortable and excited when you connect with someone at a higher level, not as if your stomach will fall out.

#2. You never feel like you have enough time together because it goes by so quickly

I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I still get butterflies every time that I see my partner because that isn’t true.

However, what is true is that after living together and working in the same house for years, there is something that I have never felt with anyone else and just thinking about it makes me feel emotional.

There is never a moment when I feel like I have enough time with him. The enjoyment and happiness that I get 98% of the time (allowing 2% for the normal bickering and stresses of life) is completely unprecedented.

If someone makes you wish that you could stop time over and over again so that you could fully hold on to every single moment with them… well, I’m going to say that’s the ultimate version of the butterflies.

#3. You are falling for your romantic interest at your own pace

My ex gazed into my eyes and said the most romantic words that I had ever heard. Instantly it felt like my heart burst into a thousand butterflies, and it was absolutely overwhelming.

The truth is that we had only been seeing each other for two weeks, and things were moving incredibly fast, a common tactic in the love bombing, and his words were completely false.

There were no other butterflies like that moment, and it was as if I had used them up all at once.

It wasn’t until later that I learned that butterflies could come at a steady pace as a relationship gains momentum and grows.

I’ll be honest and tell you that I didn’t feel butterflies the first time that I met my fiance.

If we are really going to get into it, I wasn’t into him at all and never would have dreamed we would be where we are today. The butterflies took their time, and I wasn’t looking for them.

They were a slow and steady build, and I don’t feel them every day. But as I am sitting here right now, watching him kiss our puppy on the nose and talking in his dog voice, I cannot do anything but smile.

Don’t believe that you can’t have excitement and butterflies in a healthy relationship. They exist, and I promise that they are worth waiting for.

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