Article by Maya Vukovska

Without a spark, your car won’t start or go anywhere. Most often, the outdated spark plugs are to blame for the loss of spark. You change them, and voilá! - the car is back in motion. If only broken relationships were cars, it would be so easy to fix them! Alas, when the chemistry between two people starts to fizzle, and the sparkle is lost, a new plug won’t be able to bring your relationship back to “normal”. You realize you’ve entered the monotonous stage of a relationship when you more often opt for sleep over sex, and when your boyfriend stops shaving his balls on a regular basis. Of course, these are the signs that only float on the surface. There are other, more alarming symptoms that should make you consider an intervention in order to save your relationship.

You still love him, and it feels awkward and painful to just turn your back to a love in which you have invested so much. But although the situation may seem as grim and grey as a rainy afternoon in London, we are to help you fix the things.

Trouble No 1. He doesn’t prioritize your texts anymore

It shouldn’t come as a surprise when communication between you two slows down at some point, and eventually turns into an exchange of only informative messages, like “I won’t be able to pick up your jacket from the cleaner’s” and “The dogs need a walk.” You start suspecting him of sexting with people. But instead of spying on his phone, consider the possibility that he might have got tired of receiving tons of random links to articles, or brainless gifs from you.

How to fix it: Stop texting him THAT MUCH! Another solution could be to agree on deleting social media accounts, or at least some of them. It’s unacceptable that he shows more interest in a picture of a stupid egg some anonymous moron posted on Instagram than in you.

Trouble No 2. He is reluctant to do the things that you used to enjoy doing together

And I don’t just mean picking up the right color for your designer sofa. Even the small, insignificant things you did together, like catching a movie in an unusual hour, or playing the Fuck, Marry, Kill game with actors from popular TV gay shows, used to be great.

How to fix it: Find yourselves a totally new, unconventional hobby. Think big. Think adventurous. Enroll in a Japanese/Dutch/Russian course for beginners. Or start stalking celebrities, do food-eating competitions, or pick up long range shooting, (Well, this last one is a bit problematic in certain parts of the US, and you must inform yourselves in advance if you are to undertake this particular activity).

Trouble No 3. He looks bored 24-7, and hardly ever touches you.

Having less sex is definitely one of the most disturbing signs that your relationship might be going downhill.

How to fix it: Plan a Henry David Thoreau kind of vacation: in a cabin in the middle of the woods, by a lake, no wi-fi, no nothing. You can grow a beard, hunt for squirrels, and play Papa Bear likes it rough. With nothing else to distract you (besides the insects and the snakes), sex is going to get back on the daily agenda with unprecedented velocity and ferocity.

Trouble No 4. He acts like a buddy, or a roommate, and not a partner

Intimacy is still there, but he’s started to see you as someone he can cuddle with and confide in rather than a full-blooded life partner. Hellooo, painting each other’s toenails and crying over heart-breaking movies is something he can do with his girlfriends!

How to fix it: If you are not OK with this companionship-slash-relationship situation, then show him some old school moves! Bring a third party into the picture. I am not suggesting you should start screwing around just to make him see you as a sexual creature, and be as jealous as he used to be in the beginning of the relationship. On the contrary. Surprise him by suggesting a threesome. The guy from the gym you both fancy can change the status of your current state of cohabitation from ‘friendly cuddling’ to ‘steamy showering’.

Trouble No 5. He’s cheated on you

Well, this is bad. A lot worse than just having stopped holding hands, and feeding each other ice cream in bed. Probably it was a one-time thing, and you shouldn’t worry that much. After all, you are not exactly an angel yourself! But what if your body doesn’t excite him anymore, and he on purpose looks for entertainment elsewhere?

How to fix it: You need a second first date! Make him see you as a totally different person, a person that he will desire. If necessary, play a little, pretend, put on the best act you’re capable of. Of course, you can’t change your entire outer appearance (unless you undergo a procedure like in Face/Off, the movie, and swap faces with, say, Matt Bomer!), but you shouldn’t underestimate the power of revealing the unseen sides of your personality. If this doesn’t help bring the fire back, then only one conclusion can be drawn: The guy is not the one for you, so you’d better let go of him.