Relationships are as individual as you and your partner, and it’s up to you to find the type of relationship that meets both your needs. There is often a magic which is undecipherable but which intuitively draws two guys together. It’s the heady stuff which makes us feel so alive when we fall in love and can also help to keep the relationship fresh and alive years later. Underpinning the emotional stuff are practical things we can do to give the relationship the best climate in which to grow.
All relationships are risky, there is no guarantee they will work but this should never stop you trying.
Not all relationships are meant to last forever. All relationships have a timeline: sometimes that’s until the end of your life, sometimes it’s for three days, sometimes it’s for three months, sometimes it’s for three years. Whatever your age, recognising that is important.
I say potato, you say potarto…
You should have interests that are similar or complement each other, but accept that there will be differences between you. Trying to change someone into what you would like them to be will drive you apart, so acceptance of who he is is a pre-requisite. Fortunately, differences are often part of the attraction and so trying to smooth off the rough edges can dull the magic which brought you together.
For example: gym bunnies and couch potatoes, opera queens and disco divas, vegans and carnivores are not necessarily going to work out – but stranger things have been known to happen. Sex is often an important (but not obligatory) factor in a healthy relationship but, all too often, it is the instrument against which we measure compatibility.
The penis issue
It’s been said that sex is 90% of a bad relationship and 10% of a good relationship. Think carefully before dismissing out of hand a man who has everything except a truncheon knob; equally, beware of starting a relationship with someone’s dick (it might be all he is).
You only have to read problem pages (gay or straight) to see that many relationship problems hinge on an inability to communicate honestly. Misunderstanding, conflict and mistrust are the staple diet of many a soap opera and invariably stem from partners not being open about their feelings.
A relationship where partners are honest with each other makes it much easier to face up to problems and find solutions and, as an added bonus, you will learn to understand each other better. This can sometimes be difficult where someone close to you is concerned – but it will be a testament to your abilities that he won’t feel threatened, betrayed or hurt.
Love and respect between two people cannot exist if niggles, gripes, tensions, frustration and resentment are allowed to fester. In short, if you can’t be honest: you’re screwed.
The Conversation | Three Flying Piglets for MEN R US | 2017 | 33s
Support and sharing
When a guy gives a damn about you, life’s little arsewipes become that bit easier to manage. Equally, when you succeed in life, having your man there to share it with you is a big part of why guys get together in the first place. If you’ve been there already you’ll understand, if not: it comes highly recommended.
Successful relationships are based on mutual support and sharing. He’s there for you and you’re there for him. You’re sick and he cares, he’s sick and you care. He’s sad and you hold him. You cry and he doesn’t go clubbing. Bless.
However, If you make all the effort in the relationship, he may soak it up like a sponge and in a short space of time you’ll be drained, angry and resentful... or vice versa. He’ll wonder what the fuss is about while you’re making his thousandth cup of tea… he’ll tell you not to be so stupid… and he’ll say he loves you... and tears and dramas may follow.
Safe and sound | Kitchen Films | Alejandro Ibarra | 26 Jan 2018 | 19m 9s
Like everything in life, relationships change. Be grateful: it would be a sorry world if Westlife were still in the charts ten years from now or flared jeans were permanently fashionable. The first year or so of a relationship is usually very special: you still want him all the time, you’re fucking like rabbits, and you’re both very happy.
Over time this changes and usually not for the worse. You will still want him but it’s okay that he’s not attached to your hip, the sheets are changed less often but the sex has got better through trust, experimentation and familiarity, and the happiness has found a home inside you.
As the relationship grows you will need to be willing to accept change, be flexible in your approach and in some cases, take the initiative before you get stuck in a rut. As you and he grow as individuals it’s likely that expectations and priorities will also change. Your lives together may become predictable, safe and dull and – while this may be okay for some – there is ample room for resentment, disappointment and missed opportunities.
Being your own man
Being in a relationship should not mean that you give up who you are. You are both individuals with your own personality, friends, and interests – some of the very attributes that attracted him to you in the first place. The differences between you should be appreciated and save you from becoming two archetypal clones with matching clothes and whiny lovey-dovey voices. Get the picture?
We all need that 20th century cliché ‘space’ where we can be by ourselves and enjoy some privacy. It’s perfectly natural and gives us an opportunity to chill out and relax. Relationships can be fantastic but are also hard work. Time alone is essential to re-charge the batteries. It may mean a night apart or an evening set aside to see respective friends. Whatever you decide remember that you’ll be doing this because you care for each other not because you don’t.
If you can’t leave your partner alone, it’s a sign that you are feeling insecure and/or jealous. You may have good reason but that’s no reason to behave like this. It’s a real killer and a sure-fire way to drive him away. You need to look at why you’re doing this and take it from there. If, on the other hand, you feel trapped, suffocated or resentful then you also need to examine the root cause. You need to sit down and talk things through before you get angry and upset. If not, you’ll get on each other’s nerves: one will feel that the other doesn’t love him while the other one runs away from his ‘clingy’ boyfriend.
Relationships run the risk of becoming too comfortable, easy and predictable. You start to take each other for granted, make assumptions and become lazy. All relationships need a work-out occasionally. It doesn’t have to be anything major but it does need to blow away the cobwebs away and get your hearts beating again.
Surprise him with a weekend break or a holiday (then both panic when you can’t find the passport). Tell him how you’ve longed to be strapped to the shower head. If you’re used to cinemas – go to a theatre. If you go to theatre – go to a gallery. If you always go to one club – choose another. Do stuff on the spur of the moment. If you’re used to lying in bed on a Sunday, why not visit a market or jump on a train and while you’re there – suck him off.
7 Things You Learn in Your First Gay Relationship | MTV | 29 Jun 2019
Gay Men’s Relationships: 10 Ways They Differ From Straight Relationships | HuffPost | 26 Jul 2016
Ageless | Heath Daniels | 28 Mar 2014 | 3m 42s
Gay Relationships | Mark E Miller | 13 Oct 2013 | 6m 25s