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Wondering why you're feeling disconnected from your partner?

So, let me start with what I mean by ‘connected,’ so we’re on the same page. To be connected to your partner is to feel in tune with him/her. To feel close, to feel known, to feel seen, and to feel cared for by him/her. Connection is what makes you partners, rather than just roommates. It is borne of friendship, trust, and commitment. It's about knowing that this person is your person, that they have your best interest at heart, and want you to be happy. So, obviously, it’s very important to maintain it in your relationship, as keeping that loving connection helps to foster an atmosphere of positivity in the relationship. And that atmosphere of positivity helps a couple to weather all kinds of conflict and hardship.

So, here are a few things that can cause disconnection in your relationship:

Ignoring bids. Drs. John and Julie Gottman talk a lot about bids for connection in their work on couples therapy. A bid for connection is any attempt that a person makes to get attention, affection or any type of positive response from their partner. It can be as small as making eye contact when your partner talks to you, so responding positively when your partner "puts the moves on you." Ignoring these bids leads to disconnection. They are often small and frequently don't require much from the partner other than warm, kind acknowledgment. They literally cost you nothing.

Not being interested. Nobody wants to feel uninteresting, especially to their partner. Failing to take a genuine interest in your partner's life, thoughts, and feelings will lead to disconnection in the relationship. If your partner feels that you don't care about what's going on with them, they will likely just stop talking to you and get that attention elsewhere.

Not paying attention. Closely related to not being interested, not paying attention gives