Dear Dr Eve,

My long term partner and I have drifted.  In the beginning of our relationship we spent hours talking, sharing our past lives and our future dreams.  I felt so comfortable and happy with her.  We built a business together and adopted 2 kids as we are a gay couple and neither of us wanted to be pregnant.  Naturally we spent less time together but it was still fun and constructive.  We continued to have a good enough sex life, until more recently.  We have nothing to say to each other, we go our own way socially, we are like ships passing each other in the night.  I really miss her and feel as if I don’t know who she is any more.  We need your help!



Hello Helga,

I appreciate you noticing the loss in your heart and body and reaching out to manage these feelings of sadness and confusion.  Many couples live side by side, missing each other, yet do not have the energy nor courage, to address the heartache and health consequences this brings.

As humans, we are relational and social beings.  We cannot function without interaction with others, most specifically without the eye-to-eye, face-to-face contact with another.  And when one loses that with a beloved, it feels deeply distressing. Your entire physical body becomes restless, dysregulated and if this is ongoing, over time, it may even manifest in symptoms such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, diarrhea, and other gut problems.


Emotional symptoms may appear with this long-standing disconnect such as depression, anxiety, loneliness, and sadness.


And because these feelings can become so overwhelming, we humans find ways to soothe them – we use alcohol, drugs, work, exercise, gambling, gaming, risky sexual activities to try to get rid of these horrid feelings. 


I encourage you to take the risk of reaching out to your partner and inviting her in for a conversation. Not a “we need to talk” conversation!

Rather, an “I want to get to know you again” conversation.  Agree on a day and time that best suits you both, meet in a safe and comfortable place, free of kids and external noise, and glaring light.


I have put together a few conversation starters for you.  Please feel free to add on your own.  You will notice that the questions show curiosity about your partner in a very personal way.  She will really feel your interest in her experience of an event, not just the event itself.  This brings magic to connection J


  1. What is the most impactful movie you have seen and how did it affect you?
  2. Tell me about one of your proudest moments?
  3. If you could have dinner with any person of your choice, who would it be, and why?
  4. What is your favorite type of music to listen to and why?
  5. If you chose to write a book, what would it be about?
  6. If you were to live on a desert island, what would you take along with you and why?

Take care

Dr Eve

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“Dear Dr. Eve” is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice, and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician, mental-health professional, or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical or mental condition. By submitting a letter, you are agreeing to let DR EVE use it—in part or in full—and we may edit it for length and/or clarity.