Feeling distant from your partner can happen to anyone. Understanding the contributing factors and opening up a conversation can help you feel more connected. Various factors can cause you to feel further away from your partner; it can also signal that your relationship has moved into a space that’s negatively affecting both of you individually and your relationship. Whether you’re in a new relationship or have been with someone a long time, there are ways you can approach conversations with your significant other when you aren’t feeling connected.

Lack of trust
Lack of trust may lead to feeling distant from your partner, especially if you previously had trust for them and lost confidence in them. Losing trust could come from not abiding by agreed rules for the relationship, such as infidelity, or it could be that your partner has suddenly been less open than you. Lack of trust leads to emotional instability, conflict, and the intent to break up in romantic relationships. Trusting your partner is essential for a sense of safety in relationships.

Not being present
We live in a world where a variety of things can be distractions. For example, going out to dinner but scrolling on your mobile instead of talking with your partner can be a missed opportunity for connection. Conscious attention to the here and now can help improve communication in your relationships and your overall well-being.

Physical distance
Long-distance relationships present unique challenges. If you’re in this type of relationship, physical and sexual intimacy may be less common. It may be challenging to be apart from your partner for long periods without an in-person connection, but that doesn’t automatically mean long-distance relationships are negative situations with negative outcomes. You may need to find creative and unique ways to connect with your partner. This may look different than couples who live together or are closer to each other.

Different schedules
Having different schedules can be hectic and take a toll on your time together. For example, if you work nights and your partner works the day shift, it could be difficult to find those right moments for quality time together because of your sleep schedules. If you have different work schedules, intentionally carving out quality time together can provide moments to connect.

Lack of intimacy
Most people may think of intimacy as sex, but intimacy also involves feelings of openness, connectedness and vulnerability with your partner. Sex can be part of intimacy but so can being emotionally connected with your partner. Sharing your feelings and thoughts without judgment is part of intimacy as well. Without some level of intimacy with your partner, you may likely feel distant.

Violence or abuse
Any violence or abuse in a relationship will likely leave you feeling distant from your partner. Violent and abusive behaviour isn’t conducive to a trusting, open or positive relationship. If you’re in this type of relationship, you may likely avoid your partner at all costs out of fear and for safety reasons. If you’re in an abusive situation, consider seeking professional advice.

Feeling disconnected from your partner may be caused by a variety of factors. You might consider engaging in open and honest conversation about the problems you face in your relationship to help you feel closer to your partner. Our Couples Communication Workbook may assist you in this process: https://eapassist.com.au/treatment-workbooks/