As much fun as the first throes of passion in a relationship are, I must admit that the many-years-later part is pretty awesome, too. The decisions make more sense, the forgiveness comes more easily, and the laughter happens without ever saying a word.
Here are just some of the many scenarios in a relationship, and how they change from when you’re first together to when you’re like a pair of happy old gloves:
1. Picking a movie to see on date night
Back then: He said, “You pick the movie. A rom-com like Trainwreck? Whatever makes you happy.”
Now: He says, “Amy Schumer and Bill Hader would totally make a cute couple. Want butter on our popcorn?”
2. Forgetting your anniversary
Back then: She thought, “He must not love me as much as I love him!”
Now: She thinks, “That’s okay, I already bought myself something fabulous from him.”
3. Booking a vacation destination
Back then: She argued for most romantic while he argued for the best deal.
Now: They both want whatever place has the best kid’s club.
4. Home décor
Back then: You couldn’t agree on a single paint color.
Now: You both agree to let the interior decorator choose them all.
5. Ruining her white cashmere sweater in the laundry
Back then: He apologized a million times over and offered not to do the laundry anymore.
Now: He orders a duplicate sweater online before she even notices hers is now pink and pint-sized.
6. Lingerie purchases
Back then: She said, “Look honey, I bought new lingerie.”
Now: She says, “Look honey, I’m naked.”
7. Deciding on dinner
Back then: Restaurant reservations at an intimate table for two.
Now: Pizza for two on an intimate couch in the living room with your shoes off.
8. Going to his mother’s house on Sundays
Back then: She wore her Sunday best and made a side dish from scratch to try and impress.
Now: She helps with dishes, stays out of the way, and knows where the gravy boat goes.
9. Apologizing after a disagreement
Back then: Tears and flowers and lingering grudges.
Now: Homemade brownies and a promise to never speak of it again.
10. Sleeping in on weekends
Back then: Always.
Now: He occupies the kids by saying, “There are doughnuts on the counter!” to make sure you still can.
11. Divvying up chores
Back then: Sincere discussions about evenly dividing the workload.
Now: Let’s all agree to ignore the dishes until tomorrow.
12. After sex
Back then: Do it again.
Now: Do it right the first time.