With short-lived marriages becoming the norm, Mirror draws long-term relationship lessons from celeb couples
The story of boy meets girl and they live happily-everafter seems to be a tale of yore. Times are changing. Relationships are shortlived, divorces are common. While some blame the lack of time couples spend with each other, a few believe it's because they are no longer financially-dependent on each other. In the absence of a universal handbook on how to maintain relationships forever, Mirror draws a few lessons from celeb lives.
Move in and learn
Whether it is a preference for a particular TV programme, the AC temperature, food choices, or toilet habits, the inability to adjust in a marriage is cited as key reason for divorce. Perhaps, moving in together will help you learn a thing or two about your potential spouse before you decide to settle for good. Actor Saif Ali Khan not only advocated the 'live-in relationship' concept in his 2005-film Salaam Namaste, he followed it in his personal life too. Before he tied the knot with lady love Kareena Kapoor in October last year, the two were in a live-in relationship for many years. In an interview with a lifestyle magazine, Kapoor revealed that Khan told her that he isn't a 25-year-old and couldn't possibly drop her home every night. After which, he met Kapoor's mom Babita and told her that he would like to live with Bebo as he wished to spend the rest of his life with her. Surprisingly, Babita allowed Kapoor to move in with Khan. Today, the two are happily married. There are few things you learn when living-in together that'll help you in the long run. It teaches you to be a team player and share belongings, and figure each other's quirks. In fact, both Khan and Kapoor have often stated in their interviews that things after marriage haven't changed much for them.
Dress to match
While you may be intellectually compatible, paying attention to your physical appearance, will keep the attraction alive. Relationship counsellors advise couples to make an added effort to exercise regularly and eat right. That way, you will always be eyecandy to your partner. Spruce up your wardrobe for those special social gatherings, and dress up your best. When compliments come your way, or when other couples confess that they wish to look as good as both of you, it will make things even more exciting when you get home. Married for 15 years, actor Arjun Rampal and model Mehr Jesia rarely look mismatched when they are in public together and always make for a stunning picture.
While indulging in the fun stuff like, salsa, sailing, paragliding and bungee jumping on weekends will help you bond, working together professionally will make you depend on each other. While some couples would like to avoid facing each other in office and at home, one can certainly take a cue from the co-owners of the IPL cricket team Rajasthan Royals, Raj Kundra and Shilpa Shetty. If your profession allows you, team up for a common project and bring your unique skills to the table. Since you understand each other well, you'll know how to keep you partner motivated and bring out the best in them. It will work wonders for the business too. Kundra and Shetty should know. The couple, now married for five years, have not only been involved in making key decisions for the team, like the choice of players, they stood by each other during the recent match-fixing controversy.
Maintain your identity
If you devote all your time and energy to your partner, you might end up becoming too clingy. Let your relationship be a priority, but make sure to set time aside for your college gang and those giggly girls' night outs. Actors Katrina Kaif and Ranbir Kapoor set a good example of maintaining independent identities. Yet they make sure that they spend quality time with each other after long shooting spells. Recently, they were spotted holidaying in Ibiza. Both have given each other space to be in touch with their former lovers without making a big deal about it. Kapoor even worked with ex-flame Deepika Padukone in a recent hit flick.
Age no bar
While some women are better off calling the shots, a few need older and wiser men telling them what to do. The older man's experience and a younger woman's enthusiasm for life often makes for a good mix. Actor Sanjay Dutt, 54, and wife Manyata share an age difference of 19 years. Although initially, Dutt's sisters, Priya and Namrata were unhappy with the alliance, the birth of the couple's twins, Iqra and Sharaan changed things. Close friends of Dutt insist that they have never seen the actor so stable and calm in a previous relationship.