When it comes to relationships, how much time should couples spend together? First of all, there is not a mathematic equation or amount of days or hours that will be ideal for every couple.
Each and every couple is different. Some partners thrive off of every moment together and despise being apart. Others need their alone time and appreciate their independence. Some just need that perfect balance.
How new is your relationship?
As I said, each and every couple is different, from their preferences to their needs. It seems that newer couples and longterm couples have different ideas of how much time is right for them to spend together.
For instance, if you just started seeing each other, you may not want to jump into seeing each other every day. It could be a lot all at once and could be overwhelming to go from zero to one hundred that fast.
Of course, there are couples who become serious right off the bat, but that won’t work for everyone. It is important to talk to your partner and figure out what you both want.
For long term couples, spending time together may be second nature. You may cook, watch TV, and go grocery shopping together. Or you may only have time to see one another on the weekends. What really matters is how you spend that time together. [Read: Healthy time management techniques for couples]
How much time should couples spend together?
By adding the word ‘should’ in there, it seems like there is an answer that is one size fits all. But, there isn’t.
Finding the balance of how much time you should spend together versus apart can be tricky. And it will not be the same for everyone, possibly including you and your partner.
You may love doing everything together while your partner thrives on their alone time or time with friends. But how do you know? [Read: 11 signs you’re spending way too much time together]
How to figure out how much time couples should spend together?
In order to figure out how much time couples should spend together, specifically you and your partner, there are some questions you may want to ask yourself and discuss together.
#1 What type of couple are you? Are you happiest when you are together just lounging around and running errands? Or do you prefer to spend time together on planned out dates? Or do you love catching up with a phone call at the end of the day?
Where do you thrive? Do you like having time apart because it makes your time together mean more? These are things you should talk about and decide together. [Read: How to give space in a relationship and not drift apart]
#2 What are you like individually? This is something you must consider internally. Do you like your alone time? Do you need a lazy night in watching reality TV once a week? Or do you thrive off of being around your partner?
If you are very independent, you may enjoy your time to yourself and need that. But others like to depend on others and have others depend on them.
#3 Do you enjoy alone time? Personally, I love my alone time. If I spent a week straight with someone I was dating, no matter how much I liked them, I would be craving a lazy weekend alone.
So for me, too much time together could make me overwhelmed. If that sounds like you, maybe you shouldn’t spend too much time together. [Read: How to be a better partner to your introverted lover]
#4 Do you easily feel overwhelmed or figuratively smothered? Some people, like me, can feel overwhelmed if things move too fast or get too serious too quickly. It can be a lot to adjust to. And normally that happens when you spend a lot of your time with your partner.
That would mean as a couple you should not spend all your time together. Stepping back for space apart is healthy.
#5 Do you like a lot of attention? Do you feed off being around others? Do you love always having someone around to talk to and do things with?
If so, as a couple you should spend free time together. Maybe you don’t need to go on fancy dates, but just doing everyday things together could be best for you.
How are you spending your time together?
How much time should couples spend together? As I mentioned earlier, that depends on what type of time you’re spending together.
If you live together, your time might differ from a long distance couple. So rather than being so concerned with how much time you’re spending together, focus on how you are spending that time together.
#1 Relaxing. One of my favorite ways to spend time together is just relaxing. Whether you are watching a movie, laughing at YouTube videos, or just talking, having few distractions can be very beneficial to get to know each other best.
You create an intimacy and comfort level when you spend time together sort of doing nothing. [Read: Memorable things you can do together to strengthen your bond]
#2 Adrenaline-inducing. On the flip side, some couples like to push themselves to their limits together. This too can create an unmatched bond between a couple.
When you try new things together, especially risky things, you rely on each other for comfort, safety, and celebrate excitement.
#3 Exploring. Taking the adrenaline down a notch is where the majority of couples live. Trying new things like traveling to a new destination or a new restaurant is enough variety to mix things up, but not so intense that it could be panic-attack inducing.
These things let you learn and grow together. You see new cultures and are introduced to new people and ideas. These things are how many couples make the most of their time together. This is the ideal way to spend time together if you are in a long distance relationship too.
#4 Errands. Doing everyday things like running errands together may be more on the long term relationship end of the spectrum. When your regular lives take over, your date night might be a trip to Target rather than a carriage ride through the park. And there is nothing wrong with that.
Low maintenance couples thrive on these low-key times. But this can also get many couples into a rut, leading to resentment, and even cheating. If you or your partner is bored by repetition or a routine like this, it could be time to shake things up and make time to try new things together.
#5 Fighting. Now, if you are spending most of your time together fighting, space may be needed. When a couple spends too much time together, not only can the tension get high, but the passion and chemistry can take a back seat to small annoyances.
Time apart to see friends, family, and just be alone is healthy for couples. [Read: How to stop the codependency for a healthy relationship]
Why time apart is important too
As you can see, there is no golden amount of time that couples should spend together. It depends on your preferences, your needs, and what your time together consists of.
But it is important to always remember that time together is not the most important part of balancing a relationship. Making sure to focus on your time apart keeps you centered. It maintains your individuality and identity.
It is what keeps you confident and whole within yourself. This way your relationship can add to your life, not define it.
[Read: These healthy relationship expectations will help you define a good love life]
So, how much time should couples spend together? Use this guide as a reference, but finally, it is entirely up to you and your partner. If either of you feel smothered or need space, take a step back until you find the perfect sweet spot.
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