Common Little Infidelities that Can Lead to Big Trouble

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Common Little Infidelities that Can Lead to Big Trouble

Most people wouldn’t dream of cheating. But often there are other little infidelities that can enchant us, leaving us oblivious to what’s occurring and lead us into big trouble. These romantic faux pas can cause a rift in our relationship, or even a blow up fight. For some these seemingly mild missteps can lead down the slippery slope of an actual affair. Little infidelities don’t occur in a vacuum. They are indicators that something is amiss in your marriage or relationship. Take a look and see if you are taking part in any of these. Do you flirt? Most of us do over the course of the day. But there is the kind of flirting that is polite, the kind that is just playful and fun—that makes you feel good, and the kind that feels like cheating, so wrong yet you can hardly stop. That’s the kind that could actually lead somewhere. If there is a deep, sexual tension that you don’t want to let go of, if you seek out this person just to feel this with them and lament that your primary relationship no longer gives you the same feeling, it is time to talk it over with your partner, and investigate ways in which you can reignite the spark. If you continue to follow this path, making little excuses for yourself along the way, you may end up in the arms of another and in one short embrace lose your primary relationship for good.

Are you confiding in someone of the opposite sex? When it is something light, a small problem perhaps, this isn’t a big deal. But if you are sharing your deepest, darkest secrets with someone other than your significant other, this is a surefire sign of emotional cheating. The reason is opening up in such a way is an act of emotional intimacy. In a long-term committed relationship, we expect our significant other to share such intimacies with us, and vice versa. If this is a close friend of the opposite sex that you are using as a shoulder to cry on, you could soon see the molten fires of jealousy in your partner’s eyes. Studies have shown that women find emotional intimacy more hurtful than physical intimacy. Men operate the other way around. Yet, no matter what form the infidelity takes, it can wreak havoc on the relationship. Why not give your significant other a call when you want to talk about something, rather than latching on to this other person? Of course in extreme cases, a death in the family for instance, immediate grief and the need to be consoled urgently is quite understandable.

Some people spend so much time at the office they often end up with an office-husband or wife. They may dish about everything to this person, feeling a strong bond with them from spending so much time together. Watch out. This situation can instill deep jealousy in your partner, even if you don’t see it on the surface. They may appear stoic on the outside, but are foaming over with hurt and grief within. It’s okay to have someone you are close to at work, but know where the boundaries are and where to draw the line. What makes this more complicated is, that line is different for different people. Have a conversation about it, and what they think is crossing boundaries in terms of interactions with a colleague of the opposite sex. With your office mate, don’t share intimate details of your love life with them, even if they share with you. There is a difference between dishing to your friends, or venting to them and doing so with someone of the opposite sex, especially if you are attracted to them. If you two have been hitting it off and feeling chemistry, they might even see this as an invitation. Finally, are you dressing more attractive than usual to impress someone at the office, PTA, social club or volunteer project? If you are wearing cologne or perfume when you don’t normally, and really turning up the pizzazz in your outfits when a certain someone is around, think about why you want to impress this person. What is going on in your primary relationship? How can it be changed to bring those feelings back in that space? Perhaps a date night, exploring fantasies together, or tackling your problems in a new way. Use this phenomenon as motivation to hone and rework your primary relationship to make sure the needs that are expressing themselves here are met where they are supposed to be satisfied. If it is too late, and you need to bring yourself back from the brink after your infidelity, or your partners pick up a copy of,  Not “Just Friends”: Rebuilding Trust and Recovering Your Sanity After Infidelity by Shirley P. Glass and Jean Coppock Staeheli.

Helping a Friend through a Divorce when you’ve Been There

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Helping a Friend through a Divorce when you’ve Been There

For anyone who has been through a divorce, it changes you in deep and profound ways, some good and some not so much. But being a veteran of one gives you insight that those who have never been there can’t hope to gain. When you have a friend who is going through the same thing, you certainly want to reach out and help, to be there for them and give them advice and comfort since you know how it is, as you’ve been there. Here are some ideas on how to make your efforts more impactful and focused so that you can help your friend the best you possibly can. A lot of those people who have been there, done that want to dole out all of their hard won advice on their friend without considering how the friend themselves may be feeling. Don’t give advice if your friend hasn’t asked for it. Not even a little. Ask yourself who this drive is benefitting, you with all of your knowledge, or your friend who isn’t ready to listen? If they are still in a raw stage they may feel like you are rubbing it in, being judgmental or criticizing. When they ask for advice then give it. But don’t give unless asked. You can also share your knowledge in other ways, like sharing your own personal experiences.

Think about divorce situations that are relevant, and that your friend is currently experiencing. If for instance you hit a snag in your custody case and your friend is having a similar issue, or your ex-spouse was hiding assets and your friend believes their ex is doing the same, let them know what you learned and what happened. Discuss what worked and what didn’t in your divorce, but only if and when your friend is ready to listen. Ask things, framing it in “Did you think of” or “Have you thought about.” There are a lot of resources nowadays for those going through a divorce such as support groups, women’s support groups, dating after divorce groups and more. The Transition Network for instance gives emotional and social support. Meetup has many of these which you can find in you or your friend’s area. There are also symposiums, workshops and guest speakers who talk about getting one’s finances, emotional situation or legal situation in order. Why not help your friend find these if he or she is in need of more information or support? Divorce nowadays is so draining financially and emotionally, and such a complex situation that we often need all the help we can get, and in different realms of the issue.

Go out with your friend to take their mind off of their problems. They may want to sit and wallow for weeks and months on end in the house, but ultimately that isn’t going to make them feel any better. Buy them a latte. Take them to the spa, a movie, a night out, a meal, a concert or a comedy club. Treat them extra specially, they’ll need it right now for what they are going through. Give them little gifts or cards on holidays or their birthday. Bake them something, make them dinner, do something special to let them know how much they mean to you, that they will get through this, and that you have their back. Be there for when they need to vent. Don’t judge, give advice or explain, just listen. Sometimes nothing is better than having someone listen and validate your feelings without any commentary or judgment. Statements like “Of course you would feel this way,” can do a lot to help your friend feel better. If someone you know who went through a divorce helped you, and passed along words of wisdom, why not share them with your friend? Let them know that sooner or later things will get better. If you are dating again, let them know that when they are ready you can help them with that, too. Since you’ve had the same experience, your friend is more likely to lean on you. Be there for them. Hollow out a little time for them. Treat them how you wanted to be treated when you were in their situation. But realize, too, that everyone reacts differently to divorce and allow them to grieve and heal in their own unique way. To help your friend or anyone else you know through this trying time, pick up a copy of Growing Through Divorce by Jim Smoke.

The Kinds of Friends to help you Through a Divorce

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The Kinds of Friends to help you Through a Divorce

When a marriage ends some people want to hole up and never see the light of day again. It’s true that everyone has their own grieving process. But this is a time when you could use the support of family and especially friends. Close friends will validate your feelings, comfort you, make you laugh and give you some insight. They can really help you endure those hard, dark days and aid you in reaching the bright, shining day at the end of this terrible storm that’s settled over your life. Don’t be too shy or too proud to reach out to those close to you. That’s what they’re there for. You’d be surprised how much people want to help if just given the chance. And if the roles were reversed, wouldn’t you be happy to do the same for them? There are different kinds of friends that can help you through a divorce. See if you have any of these in your social circle and be sure to reach out to them in your time of need. A divorce can drive you nuts. What you may need is a friend who’s logical that can show you how things work and tie the loose ends together for you. If you have sudden revenge fantasies, the logical friend will bring up karma. And if you suddenly want to get a face tattoo to celebrate your new singlehood, your logical friend is sure to talk you off of that ledge. This is a good friend to have when the tempests of emotion rock your inner core. Be sure to have one logical friend you can reach out to.

Next, you want the confidant and conspirator. This is the person who will back you up, and throw in a few things when you really need to badmouth your ex. They’ll take you out for a few drinks, maybe even introduce you to some cute singles they happen to know. This is the person you can get loud with, have adventures with, and find reasons to love your life again with. Divorce can feel like part of you was ripped out. It’s important to explore your past and other sides of yourself. That’s why the old friend is a good one to reach out to. You can sit and relax, reminisce with them and get insight into who you were, who you are and who you want to be. The old friend has probably known you a long time and can talk about your other relationships and what patterns emerge, helping you to see what perhaps you brought to the relationship that you should work on to make your next one spectacular. If you met a new friend, why not spend time with them? They can help you develop your new personality, post-divorce. If you have a friend of the opposite sex, don’t steer clear of them. Hang out with them. When you’re ready a little harmless flirting as practice can lift your self-esteem. They can also provide insight from the other gender’s point of view. The fuzzy friend is a great one to have. Dogs and cats know instinctively when we hurt. The gestures that they do and the unconditional love they practice can help heal your heart. Finally there’s the tried and true friend, the one who may be all of these friends combined, the one that’s always at your side. You know they’ll be there when you call. Definitely reach out to that friend. They’ll have you feeling better in no time. For more advice on getting over a divorce, read Chicken Soup for the Soul: Divorce and Recovery: 101 Stories about Surviving and Thriving after Divorce by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, and Patty Hansen.

Men Who Lose Sleep Misinterpret Women’s Cues

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Men Who Lose Sleep Misinterpret Women’s Cues

A new study states that guys who are sleep deprived don’t judge a woman’s desire for sex accurately (hindustantimes). 29 women and 31 men took part in this study. They were asked to fill out a questionnaire where they had to gauge a woman’s interest in commitment and sex. They took the same test before and after an evening without sleep. Here is a sample question, “When a woman goes out to a bar, how likely is it that she is interested in finding someone to have sex with that night?” When they slept well, both sexes rated a woman’s interest in sex lower than a man’s. But, after a sleepless night, men rated women’s interest in sex much higher than before. In fact, they believed a woman’s interest in sex was equal to a man’s. Women however never changed their answers, sleep deprived or no. Commitment levels were the same for both sexes regardless of how much sleep they had.

The implications of this research are that sleep deprived men may make decisions and miscalculations that their well-rested brethren wouldn’t do. It’s important when evaluating a dating situation to do so accurately. The results of this research can be found in the journal Sleep. Coming on too strong when you are sleepy is not a good idea. In fact, it’s important to make sure you accurately assess the situation. Some people are often overconfident in their prowess with the opposite sex. Others are too intimidated. Most people are somewhere in the middle. Understand how you regard the opposite sex and how well you read them. When a person enters your personal space, holds eye contact, smiles and laughs a lot in your presence, touches your arm or some other part of you, they are interested in you. If you are unsure give the person more space and seek to find out more. If you are a bad judge of the opposite sex, ask a friend or a confidant how they felt about the behavior of the person you are interested in. For more advice on women’s cues, read the book Read Her Signs: An Essential Guide to Understanding Women and Never Getting Rejected Again by Stella Belmar.

Wife’s Nagging can lead to Husband’s Early Death

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Wife’s Nagging can lead to Husband’s Early Death

When a man tells his wife she’s nagging him to death, he may not be exaggerating. According to research out of the University of Copenhagen a wife’s nagging can lead to a husband’s early death. Spousal worries and demands lead to about 315 deaths per 100,000 says the National Post. Those men who had very demanding spouses were 150% more likely to die early. Going to work helped some husband’s de-stress. Those who were unemployed and home with a nagging wife all the time had a higher chance of kicking the bucket early. Women are socialized to talk about and communicate their emotions with friends and family. Men however are socialized to hold things in or deal with them themselves. Instead of friends, men generally have their spouse or lover as their confidant. Lead author of this study Dr. Rikke Lund in an interview with The Daily Mail said, “Men will limit their conversations with friends and family. The one person they have as a confidant is actually the one putting the worries and demands on them then that could be making them more vulnerable.” Men’s bodies react to stress by releasing cortisol, the stress hormone. This isn’t good for cardiovascular health such as blood pressure.

Children and spouses who were demanding were the ones that put men into early graves. In-laws and neighbors didn’t have the same effect. It could be out of a sense of love, duty and social responsibility that makes men more susceptible to the stress placed upon them by their wife and kids. Women have stronger social networks and therefore aren’t affected by nagging the same way men are, according to the Telegraph. Certainly men should make sure to pay attention to the woman they plan to marry in this regard. He should however notice his own behavior. Does he increase her likelihood of acting this way? Does his wife believe he isn’t listening or paying attention to her? Or is she just a complainer who exports all of her happiness in a selfish and demanding way? In terms of nagging women, wives should first evaluate what she is going to say to her husband. Are you giving him more stress or helping him through it? Sure, couples do have to discuss uncomfortable situations. But is this something you can handle yourself? Are you making things positive, secure, happy and loving for your man or are you making his home life worse? Find different ways to communicate and see how best to reach him. Try to couch things in a positive manner. Make sure, instead of putting the burden on him, you two are going to tackle problems together, as a team. For more information on this study, you can find it in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health. To learn about communicating in a more positive way, read The Dance of Anger: A Woman’s Guide to Changing the Patterns of Intimate Relationships by Harriet Lerner, Ph.D.