Just because you're married doesn't mean you have to share everything with your spouse, Rabbi Shmuley says. "Creating a bit of separation and privacy in the home can actually bring couples together," he says. Rabbi Shmuley talks about maintaining privacy when married and offers advice on how to rekindle the intimacy in your relationship. Keeping an aura of mystery and privacy is one of the most important ingredients in creating a long-term, passionate relationship, Rabbi Shmuley says. "When husband and wife are one and the same and act like best friends or roommates, it can only bring about one thing: boredom," he says.
If your spouse is becoming more of your roommate than your lover, Rabbi Shmuley offers some tips to recreate the erotic spark:
Try pulling back a little bit. For example, if you walk around the house naked, try wearing more clothing. "When you see something too much, it isn't special anymore," Rabbi Shmuley says. "Remagnetize your relationship by being modest, even if it seems silly. Work on creating a greater zone of privacy, so when you do see each other's bodies, you can't keep your hands off of each other."
Maintain active social interests and interesting activities outside of the marriage. For example, if your husband loves to go play golf with his friends and you like to go play tennis, it's fine too. Rabbi Shmuley says.
Get back to the basics of what it means to be a man and a woman. "Gender roles have been redefined so quickly over the past 30 years, but sometimes it's good to act like proper ladies and gentlemen," he says.
At the same time, try not to extend the privacy zones to the point where you lead separate lives. "If you're never together, that's a problem to work on," Rabbi Shmuley says.
"Sexual attraction between husband and wife is predicated on erotic differentiation. When men and women morph into each other in marriage, boredom sets in. Eroticism requires sexual polarity, and in this sense, privacy zones in marriage are a good idea. Husbands and wives should certainly not tend to hygienic issues in each other's presence, and there is nothing wrong with each having friends and hobbies which they independently pursue. However, care should be taken to ensure that most of what the two of you do is done together in marriage so that you foster real intimacy."
Printed from Oprah.com on Tuesday, December 10, 2013