Mental Health

How to Move Past the Room-mate Phase

If living with your partner has become more like having a platonic roommate, it’s time to spice things up. Here’s how you can rekindle the romance, if the roommate phase has creeped in your relationship.

By URLife Team
02 Nov 2023

Picture this: Imagine returning home after a tiring day at work. You find your partner sprawled on the couch, watching television. The only interactions you have mainly revolve around practical matters, like discussing finances, coordinating cleaning schedules, or managing household chores. Your connection feels more platonic than romantic, with personal conversations and shared moments becoming increasingly rare.


If this scenario is becoming a recurring pattern in your relationship, you may be experiencing a phase where you feel more like roommates than romantic partners.


Does your partner still call you sweet nicknames like they used to in the initial stages of your relationship? Or have you reached a point where you don't feel the need to be affectionate anymore because things have shifted, but you can't quite figure out why?


While it might seem unnerving to you, but all romantic relationships that involve living together do go through the roommate phase at some point or the other. It doesn’t mean that the love between you and your partner has vanished. In fact, it can be an opportunity for growth and reconnection of your relationship, while juggling other aspects of co-living.


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The roommate phase of marriage can happen when partners stop perceiving their relationship as something special and significant. They are bonded but not connected with each other. This is when that spark goes missing from any romantic relationship, and it may happen over a long period of time.


The roommate phase occurs because over time, the initial excitement of a relationship can settle, and partners start becoming more comfortable with each other, just like two friends sharing a living space. This feeling of comfort can result in a routine that lacks excitement, which eventually leads to a decrease in romantic gestures, intimacy and affection. Additionally, the toll of daily responsibilities often takes over, leaving less time for romance and intimacy.


The best way to revive the spark is by dedicating more time towards each other, communicating and putting efforts to bring your relationship back on track. If you’re missing the romance, and want ways to reignite it, we’ve got some tips on how to get out of the roommate phase.


Related story: How To Be A Supportive Partner


Tips to get out of the Roommate Phase

Rediscover shared hobbies

Rediscovering shared hobbies by taking a class with your spouse serves two purposes; it not only allows you to spend quality time together, but it can also bring the missing excitement element back to your relationship. You will have something new to share and discuss about. The science behind this is when our brain is trained to learn something new, it creates new neural pathways, which brings about more joy and excitement. Doing it with your spouse clubs the positive energy of your relationship and helps to rebound your relationship.


Get back to basics

When the roommate phase sinks in, plan a date and go back to the place where you used to date. Revisiting the same physical place can rekindle and refresh the cherished memories you have with your partner and the place. It serves as a beautiful reminder of the moments when your relationship was filled with sparks, laughter, and connection, helping you both rediscover the magic.


Related story: The Powerful Way Friends Improve Your Well Being


Appreciate and Validate

Appreciation can be a game changer for your relationship. Often with the passing years of a relationship, we tend to stop appreciating and complimenting, believing that our partners already know how we feel about them. Offering validation is also an important aspect of any relationship. By acknowledging your partner’s feelings, opinions and experiences you are fostering open communication and trust. It shows that you respect their perspective, even if you don't always agree, which can strengthen the bond between you and your partner.


Surprise your spouse 

You can break up the monotony and spice up your relationship by doing something unexpected. It could be something as simple as taking your partner out for dinner, scheduling date nights, going on vacations, shopping, a long drive or for a leisurely stroll together. These unexpected gestures can inject excitement and novelty into your routine, reminding your partner that you cherish and appreciate them and love spending time with them.


Open communication

Have a heart-to-heart conversation with your partner about how you both feel. Discuss what you miss in the relationship and what you'd like to change. Encourage your partner to share their feelings too. Through these discussions, you can gain a deeper understanding of each other's needs and work together to address them.


Related story: How To Revive Your Friendships


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The roommate phase is a common part of many long-term relationships, but it doesn't have to be the end of your romantic journey. By prioritising open communication, reigniting the romance, and spending quality time together, you can fix this phase and breathe new life into your relationship.



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