How much time should you spend together?

Kirsten Dunst

Kirsten Dunst and Garret Hedlund reportedly spent a lot of time together at the Sundance Film Festival. But when they get back to a more regular schedule, the co-stars of the upcoming movie “On the Road” might be faced with that question all new couples must deal with: How do we mesh our worlds without giving up what is important to us individually and possibly losing ourselves in the process? In other words, how much time should we spend together? It is a tricky question, and the answer might not be the same for each partner.

If one person wants to be together but the other is pulled toward something else — a scheduled appointment, a night out with friends, a quiet evening at home — the first might feel rejected and the other might then feel guilty. You might be able to avoid that if you are clear from the beginning about your boundaries.

Let them know you are excited and looking forward to spending time with them and wish you could make all these other responsibilities disappear, but both of you have things that need your individual attention. As long as you understand that, it will give you the room to do what you need to do and not feel you are neglecting your relationship. The important thing is to emphasize that choosing to do your own thing does not mean you don’t want to be together, and if the other person makes the same choice it doesn’t mean they don’t care about you.

You can be considerate and reassuring by letting each other know when you are free to spend time so that you can both make your separate plans and still preserve time to be with one another.
Ultimately, you want to honor your own needs in tandem with theirs. Hopefully, once Kirsten and Garrett settle into a routine they will be able to do just that.

— Relationship expert Dr. Jane Greer is creator of “Shrink Wrap” – national commentary on what we can learn from celebrity relationships – and host of “Let’s Talk Sex” at Healthylife.net. Her book, “What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship,” is available nationwide.

Metro does not endorse the opinions of the author, or any opinions expressed on its pages. 


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Memorial held for Sean Collier, MIT police officer…

More than 1,600 people gathered at MIT on Friday for a memorial service for Sean Collier, the police officer shot to death a year ago in the aftermath of the…

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon preview: Elite American, International runners…

2014 Boston Marathon: Elite American, International runners to watch

NBA

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams…

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams have the best shot at a championship. The Thunder, Clippers, Heat and Rockets lead the way.

NFL

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.