Love is patient and love is kind, but it can also be pretty darn gross sometimes. Seriously, once you're past the honeymoon phase of a relationship, things start to get shockingly real. But as it turns out, there are plenty of gross things that are good for your relationship as a couple. It's all about getting to know the real you, farts and all.
As much as you'd like to be first-date perfect all the time, life intervenes. Catching a cold or dealing with digestion issues at some point is inevitable. It's just a part of being human. And on some level, it's nice to drop the facade and just be yourself.
So if you find it weirdly romantic when the SO brings you extra tissues or listens to your gory tale of period pain, just know that that's OK. There's a certain level of intimacy in sharing the less-than-perfect parts of yourself with a partner. To learn more about this idea, Romper spoke with a variety of relationship, health, and wellness experts to get their take on the topic. Here's what they had to say about the embarrassing, vulnerable, and sometimes disgusting things that health couples do. Basically? There's no reason to feel ashamed about taking on your partner's back acne.
1. Eating A Messy Meal Together
Can you and your partner tuck into a giant plate of BBQ or slurp down noodles without a care? It's a great sign. "Activities that you can do together that may not be instinctually 'sexy' like eating a messy meal also signal to your partner that you are comfortable with them and more importantly, with yourself," as Jeannie Assimos, Chief of Advice at eharmony and host of The Love Show, tells Romper. So go ahead and order that overstuffed burrito.
2. Taking Out The Garbage
Sure, it isn't the sexiest chore. But taking the initiative to empty the garbage or clean the bathroom can demonstrate how much you care for your SO, as Assimos says. It's a way to demonstrate your love without saying a word.
3. Popping Pimples
Well, maybe Dr. Pimplepopper is really on to something. "Even though it's gross, I swear by couple's self-care routines (even if that means popping your partner's pimples or pulling out the long hairs on their back- I know, cringe, but if your partner gets them, they'll need their woman to help out with the hard to reach places)," says Olinda Hassan, Partner in the Strategy & Innovation team at Twitter. Hey, sometimes being in a relationship means zapping those back blemishes.
4. Working Out Together
Invite your SO to the next sweat session. "In the same regard, even if it means we're sweating together, or all red and puffy or hearing your partner's natural body sounds, exercising together can be really positive for us," says Hassan. It's a bonding activity that can also boost your workouts.
5. Leaving The Bathroom Door Open
As relationships deepen, privacy tends to go out the window. "Therefore, even something as simple as keeping the bathroom door open can signify a deep trust in situations where one is at their most vulnerable and exposed state," says Samantha Morrison, a Health and Wellness expert for Glacier Wellness. Simply bathing with the door open means you trust the other person.
6. Passing Gas
Hey, this topic had to come up. "Not only does it show that you’re comfortable with each other, but it could also be beneficial for your physical health," says Caleb Backe, a Health & Wellness Expert for Maple Holistics. "Stay with me here. Scientists recently discovered that smelling your partner’s farts may actually help lengthen your life." Thank the hydrogen sulfide, which might protect cells and fight illness, as Backe further explains.
7. Caring For Them During Illness
Chances are, no one feels super sexy when surrounded by used tissues and cough drop wrappers. That's why it's such a big deal. "Caring for one another in their time of need, no matter how gross or disturbing it is, can bring two people closer together," says Mackenzie Riel of adult romance company TooTimid.com. "It shows you're willing to run the risk of potentially even getting sick yourself in order to help your partner." Really, the partner who shows up with hot soup when you're battling a cold is beyond wonderful.
8. Sharing Personal Info
Find someone who doesn't mind when you share too much information. In fact, being able to talk about periods or constipation shows a huge amount of trust, as Riel tells Romper. Whether it's divulging a little TMI or asking for some help with your back hair, these gross tendencies can bring couples closer.