Reciprocal romantic service acts


Romantic act = one is surprised (and hopefully delighted) by the other, and usually a one-off or very rare event

Couple Ritual = both know about it, and it recurs/happens over and over again; both generally directly benefit

Service = doing something for another in which one does not, or only slightly/tangentially benefits

Romantic acts of service are generally NOT considered a couple ritual.  And, in regards to a repeated service, the act can very often or always be in the spirit of work instead of warming one’s and the other’s heart.  When both people in the relationship engage in these reciprocal acts of service for more everyday tasks, it’s sweet that the other is though of.

If the romantic act of repeated service does warm BOTH, and CONTINUES to have that feeling to it,
then it is a rare and useful couple ritual.



  • Opening door of car or building
  • Doing laundry
  • Plugging in cell phone/tablet/laptop
  • Filling partner’s car with gas
  • Cleaning a meal’s dishes
  • Doing the grocery shopping
  • Making the bed


Principal Purposes Served

  • Create stable touchstones
  • Foster trust
  • Manage conflict
  • Help to accomplish tasks
  • Emotional money in the bank