Unhealthy Relationship Warning Signs

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Unhealthy Relationship Warning Signs

Do you know the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship? You’d better or else you could be in one and not even know it. Sure you might feel deep down something is wrong. But you’d be surprised how many people chug along in a relationship that is weighing them down or slowly poisoning them psychologically and they don’t even realize it. Here are the warning signs, see if you recognize them in your own relationship. First, what is the lying situation like?

Are you lying about small things? Do you tell a web of lies, one to cover up another and so on? If you aren’t a pathological liar by nature, then it is likely serious issues in the relationship that are making you lie. What about your partner? Are they lying all the time too? If you suspect they are lying, even on small matters, or worse if you’ve given up on whether they are being truthful or not, your relationship is rocky at best. Once the bond of trust has been severed, it’s hard to restore it. The next warning sign is infidelity. If one or both of you have gone astray, not only has the trust bond been severed but you’ve both been hurt emotionally. And what caused the cheating to begin with? This is a serious warning sign.

Do you have a secret goal that you wish your partner would achieve? If you have secret desires for them you haven’t shared, then go ahead and share them. Sit down with them and see if they want to commit to accomplishing whatever it is you have in mind. But to harbor them and have them affect you, thereby affecting the relationship, is a poor way to conduct yourself and it hurts your partner without either one of you knowing it. When they aren’t living up to some imagined expectation you punish them, even though they have no idea why. Is there jealousy issues? If you or your partner try to cut the other down, say separate someone from their friends because they are popular, or trying to get them fired because they are successful, a toxic jealousy has crept into the relationship. This will drive you two apart if it isn’t dealt with.

Being overly insecure and jealous of the opposite sex is another red flashing, warning sign. When you aren’t feeling any emotional intimacy the relationship is down the tubes. Reestablish it by reconnecting, or drift apart. If there is no sex in the relationship, this is a big sign that problems are deep and profound. Do you or your partner set each other up for a fall, just to say, “I told you so”? This is a warning sign that things aren’t going well. Find ways to turn this relationship around or get out of it. For more advice read, Love Is a Choice: The Definitive Book on Letting Go of Unhealthy Relationships by Dr. Robert Hemfelt, Dr. Frank Minirth, and Dr. Paul Meier.

Can an Open Marriage ever really Work?

POLYAMORY

Can an Open Marriage ever really Work?

People come in all shapes and sizes. They have different wants and needs. Anthropologists say what was traditionally supplied us by a whole village such as warmth, guidance, financial sustenance, understanding, passionate love and eminent friendship we now seek solely in our spouse or significant other. But that’s a huge burden to carry. Due to the high divorce rate, the need for sexual novelty, the desire to try the same gender or emotional needs that their spouse can’t supply sometimes pivots them in the direction of an open marriage. It’s often when the needs of one person cannot be met by the other. It’s no one’s fault. Instead, it’s usually just a mismatch. For others, it’s a need to explore further with love, a mindset that requires free will, strong confidence, good communication and a non-jealous personality. Surely, there are dysfunctional open marriages as there are dysfunctional closed ones. But can an open marriage ever really work? Experts say there are such that can work but it takes the right kind of couple and the proper mindset. Open and honest communication is the most important aspect. An open marriage doesn’t mean a person can have sex with whomever, whenever. Instead, a certain set of pre-agreed upon rules are made and adhered to, with each mate’s preferences in mind.

According to psychologist Deborah Anapol an expert on polyamory— practicing intimacy with more than one partner, though many couples who in an open marriage struggle with jealousy from time to time, very few say they regret being able to share intimacy outside the confines of their relationship. There are many alternative romantic and sexual couplings going around nowadays. People are getting married later on in life due to the time it takes to get a proper education and work your way up. The new generation prefers lots of choice and not getting tied down. In the wake of the sexual revolution and the explosion of dating and hookup apps, people have freedoms and opportunities they’ve never had before in the history of humankind. That and the elevated divorce rate has non-traditional people looking for new ways to have their needs met, explore their sexuality and enjoy their life with others.

Still, the reason for entering into such a relationship is important. One party should not be pressuring the other into entering into such an agreement. Another party should not be going along with it when they really don’t like the idea, just for the sake of saving the relationship. Instead, this is something that both parties have to be sincerely interested in. For some couples, it’s a way for a person who has a large sexual appetite for instance to have his or her needs met without disenfranchising their partner. For others, it’s a way to express their freedom. They believe the human heart has the capacity to love more than one person and in more than one way. They feel that commitment and fidelity are not synonymous. Besides intermittent jealousy, the potential for a stream of uncomfortable conversations and lots of chances to be tempted to lie to your partner, cause many to steer clear of the idea. Others fear the chance that no matter what rules are in place their spouse could run off with another. Really it’s all about how you feel about one another and your relationship. If it’s a way to renew the marriage or explore new dimensions of love and freedom, go for it. If it’s to placate someone or a last ditch effort to save the marriage, you may be setting yourselves up for a terrible fall. For more pick up a copy of the book, The Seven Natural Laws of Love, Polyamory in the 21st Century by Deborah Taj Anapol, Ph.D.

Ethical Non-monogamy or Polyamory

POLYAMORY

Ethical Non-monogamy or Polyamory

With so many options today and many professionals independent and not interested in settling down, people are looking for new romantic options that fit their modern day attitudes and lifestyle. Though it isn’t a significant part of the population yet, ethical non-monogamy, also known as polyamory, is a growing trend. So what is polyamory? It comes from the Greek meaning many loves. There is no hard and fast definition. The practice is having more than one loving or sexual relationship at a time, which all parties involved knowledgeable and consenting. No one should be pressured into entering into this kind of relationship. It should be an arrangement all parties are interested in. Another definition less often used, it could also mean a couple taking part in non-monogamous activities such as swinging. Many believe that the human heart is too wild and free to be tamed by a certain social construct. Outside of such expectations, no one can really say who they will love or how many they have the capacity to love, be it one or twenty. Though we have familial love and friendship, polyamory refers specifically to having romantic relationships that include intercourse. The point is to grow strong relationships, enjoy the powerful feelings and the act and have deep, profound intimacy in all of them. Everyone involved has to be consenting. These need to be open-minded individualists. But they also need to be good communicators.

It isn’t a competition. No one should be keeping score. Instead, it’s about making an emotional connection with others and not dictating to the heart who and how. Some believe that we have the capacity to love many others without constraints. They say this is a way to escape serial monogamy. In monogamous relationships there is the problem of the relationship going sour. Another problem is cheating, lying and hurt feelings. Here, those things are eliminated. Of course, there can be jealousy. But it’s how that jealousy is managed that counts. Really jealous people should steer clear of this sort of arrangement. There are all kinds of poly relationships. What most people are looking for is the freedom to love how they wish without hurting others, and the ability to determine what kind of arrangement works for them. How long does such a relationship last? Just like all relationships, it depends on the people that are in it and how they relate to each other. Some last for years while others only for a short while. Each person in any type of relationship brings baggage and pre-conceived notions. Communication is really what it all comes down to. You don’t have to be bisexual to be poly. Some couples are looking for an extra to form a triad. Some triads are open, others closed.

For those who live together, arrangements such as everyone having the same bedroom and bed, to each person having their own separate bedroom, to certain people maintaining a schedule where they sleep in a certain bed on a certain night are all well-known arrangements in poly communities. If it’s a closed triad, it’s important that each member relate to the other, and spend time with each other so no one feels left out. Each person’s relationship has to be strengthened. Sometimes a schedule is formed so each member can have quality time with each other. Some people practice polyfidelity or polyfi meaning their triad is closed. But others are more open. There is also a unique term called compersion in the poly community. This is when someone you love is being loved well and taken care of by another, and it brings you great joy. Certainly there is no test of whether or not you are poly. Most are of a very open-minded, progressive mindset and nonreligious and so not tethered to monogamy as such. Many are intellectuals and professionals. To learn more of whether or not polyamory or ethical non-monogamy is right for you read, More Than Two: A Practical Guide to Ethical Polyamory by Franklin Veaux and Eve Rickert.

Your Guy hopes you Don’t Ask These

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Your Guy hopes you Don’t Ask These

Lots of women have questions about their new guy when they first get together. But when dating it’s important to let people reveal themselves slowly, when they are ready. Lots of women can overload a man with questions when a relationship is taking root. But this can scare the man off. He wants to have fun and get to know her naturally. But if he’s overloaded with questions, it isn’t fun anymore.  In fact, he thinks it means that she is going to turn into a nag later, or else be controlling and manipulative. It’s good to get to know your man. And you don’t want to waste time with someone who isn’t right for you. But questions should show that you are interested in getting to know them and build a relationship.

Some women also export all of their issues onto their men. Questioning is a way to have him validate her and alleviate her insecurity.  But if she keeps doing this he will put space between them thinking that she is too needy. Here are some questions your guy hopes you don’t ask, at least at the beginning of the relationship. The first is whether or not he thinks other women are attractive. All men find other women attractive. It doesn’t mean they will act on a fleeting impulse. And thinking someone is attractive and being in love with someone are two different things, both for men and women. Too much staring is inappropriate no question. But a quick look isn’t an offense. It’s natural.

It’s nice to ask your man what he’s thinking from time to time. But if you are asking all the time, it feels like an invasion of privacy. Every relationship needs borders and a romantic one is no exception. Certainly no two people should know what the other is thinking all the time. This phrase is acceptable if your guy has trouble sharing his emotions and you want to try to get him to open up, particularly if he is a total enigma or you think something is bothering him. But if you are just asking all the time out of some anxiety you are having, examine that anxiety. Are you the jealous type? Are you insecure? These are issues to work through. Showing interest in someone is one thing, but trying to know their every thought another.

Don’t ever ask if you look fat. No man ever knows how to answer in a way that will satisfy you. The best he can do is go over the top and hope you are satisfied. Instead, go shopping with and ask one of your girlfriends. Send her a photo real quick on your smart phone. It will save your guy a headache. Lastly, don’t ask about past relationships unless you want to hear the answer. And be ready to talk about your own. With these questions in mind, your man will be a lot happier, more comfortable with you and willing to open up. For more advice read, Relationship Advice for Women: Roadmap to His Heart- 8 Steps to Attracting & Keeping Mr. Right by Anthony Floyd.

Guys, are You Cheating and Don’t Know it?

infidelity

Guys, are You Cheating and Don’t Know it?

If you are in a committed relationship, you probably have a good idea of what the delineation between physical cheating and being faithful is. But there are lots of gray areas in social contexts that while it may not seem like cheating to you, your lady may view things far differently. So are you cheating, in her eyes, and you don’t even know it? It’s a scenario that can spell disaster, at best a big blow out and at worst a change to your Facebook relationship status, nights crying into your pillow and a whole lot of questions from your family and friends. So how can you fend off relationship disaster? Have a clearer picture of how the fairer sex views infidelity.

Do you have a female colleague or friend who you are close to? Do you discuss personal details about your relationship with her? Whether you are complaining that she hogs the bed or that she’s a little timid in the bedroom, you may be crossing the line. Daniel Kruger, Ph.D. is a University of Michigan psychologist who studies differences in gender, specifically in how they view infidelity. “Informational infidelity” is the term he uses for this phenomenon. A woman could read this situation as emotional bonding. Females find this a bigger threat than even sexual intercourse. Kruger says, “If he’s fooling around on the side, she still has the relationship—the investment. But if a guy is falling for another woman, he might abandon her.”

Have you ever checked your ex’s Facebook page or other social media site? If you are friends or you are just curious to see what she is up to, you may see no harm. Human sexuality professor Justin Sitron, Ph.D. at Widener University says, “Socially, we’re primed to think that men don’t care about emotions and feelings—that all they care about is sex.” So you may be innocently checking out your ex’s page, but what she’s thinking is you don’t have the capacity to do so. Sex must somehow be on your mind. Another problem can occur when you are out socially with the people from work. You may saddle up to the bar and buy a drink for a coworker’s main squeeze or a colleague. But even fitting the bill for a cocktail could be overstepping according to Kruger. “It could be seen as being generous and nice,” he said. “But it could also be construed as hitting on someone, especially if you’re buying a drink just for the woman—not, say, a round of beers for everyone.” Buy a round or just your own and your lady’s drink. If there is a special place that you always go to, or the restaurant where you had your first date, do not take another female there. You are putting your life in your hands. Those places have serious sentimental value and so are off limits. Finally, be careful when saying something nice about another woman’s hairdo or getup. It could mean you’ve been paying some attention to her. Think about the compliment you are about to pay before saying it. Mull it over and if it sounds like something that could get you in trouble, silence may be a better route. For more advice read, Boundaries in Marriage: Line between Right and Wrong by Jeffery Dawson.