Blog

30
Nov


Falling in love never grows old. Regardless of your age, a new romance softens the hardest of hearts and awakens long lost regions of the soul.

Clinical psychologist and couples therapist Ayala Pines reflects on the significance love plays in our lives:

Does romantic love ever become a lower priority for people?

I don’t think so. Romantic love is especially important for men and women in midlife. A number of women in their fifties find the great love of their lives. Forty- and fifty-year-old men are connecting to the female side of their personalities and long for greater intimacy with their partners. Even if your sex drive goes down (due to a decline in sex hormones), there is no reason why romantic love should have a lower priority at this age.

How can a couple rekindle a relationship?

When the love in a relationship dies completely, no amount of rekindling will help. But if a few embers are still smoldering, try and inject some adrenaline (the elixir of love) into the relationship by taking a trip abroad, hiking, taking a dance class or going on a spiritual retreat. Couples therapy can also help.

Why do you feel one of the best opportunities for personal growth is within the context of a romantic relationship?

We’ve all been in situations where the things that attract us most in the beginning of a relationship become a great source of stress later on. She loved his sense of humor but later complains they can’t hold a serious conversation, or he was attracted to her sensitivity but complains later that she is too sensitive. If you can control your urge to withdraw when things get tough — a great challenge and opportunity for growth — you can give each other what you need most (or complete the unfinished emotional business of your childhood), and also grow in the direction you need as an individual.

When the love in a relationship dies completely, no amount of rekindling will help. But if a few embers are still smoldering, try and inject some adrenaline (the elixir of love) into the relationship by taking a trip abroad, hiking, taking a dance class or going on a spiritual retreat. Couples therapy can also help.

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Category : Blog
16
Nov


The single most common question people ask me about sex is, “Am I normal?” Young and old, coupled and single, men and women worry that their desires, preferences, fantasies, body and curiosity are normal — that is, like everyone else’s.

I used to answer most people reassuringly, “Yes, lots of people are into that, you’re normal.” But if you define normal as what most people do, most of us aren’t normal. True, worrying about your sexual normality is normal. But most people go their own way after that. Sure, there’s an average frequency that people make love, an average position, an average penis size. But you’re not making love with the average person — you’re making love with a single, unique individual. Besides, averages aren’t always meaningful. Sampling men and women, you conclude that the average person has one testicle and one ovary — a meaningless statistic.

So what do we do that isn’t so normal?

Some of us are monogamous; many aren’t. Some of us are strictly heterosexual; many aren’t. There are about as many different sexual fantasies as there are people fantasizing. The arrangement of body parts during sex ranges from the predictable to the laughable and the improbable, and includes things you may not even consider sexual.

Some lovers wear costumes; some hide their bodies. Some people shut the door and turn off the lights; others seek high-exposure places like elevators. Some people like their sex polite; while others get nasty in language, lingerie or their fingers’ destination.

In fact, the number of ways people are sexually unconventional is so large, it can’t even be fully described. While you’re reading this, someone, someplace, is experimenting with new places to put their tongue.

That person may be worried that he or she is too kinky.

If only he or she knew what you do.

Don’t take all of this as a subtle statement that you’re a sexual freak, or that you’re isolated in your perverse eroticism. Anything sexual that you imagine, want, or do is being imagined, wanted, or done by someone somewhere.

You know, we’re each alone in this together.

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Category : Blog
9
Nov


No one can be in two places at once. Therefore, if you want to be present during sex, you have to let go of both the past and future. You may not want — or be able — to let go permanently, but you need the ability to let go for an hour. Let’s look at four things to let go of.

First, let go of how your body used to be. Honey, none of us is getting any younger, and I know our (fill in the blank) used to be firmer, higher, smaller. Well, it isn’t now, and both you and your lover need to accept that. Any energy you put into sucking in your belly, hiding your butt, or pretending you don’t look exactly the way you do is energy taken away from the good sex you could be having.

Second, let go of comparing yourself to your partner’s ex-lovers. Needing to be the “best” is almost as destructive as needing to be the “only.” During lovemaking many of us focus more on our partner’s ex- than on our partner, in a perverse mental threesome that nobody enjoys. Teach your partner to make you feel like the world’s most important lover, and learn how to feel that way when he or she does. Be gracious. It’s an art.

Third, let go of worrying what your partner will think of you later. We all look silly during sex — if we’re enjoying ourselves. And if we’re fortunate, and our partner is fortunate, we will squeal, beg, fart, suck, demand, drool and lose track of time, space, grammar and our hands. Decide before you begin that this is OK, or don’t bother taking off your clothes.

Fourth, let go of any trauma you have previously suffered around sexuality. Difficult? Of course. Perhaps the most difficult thing you’ve ever done. Possible? Certainly; the human spirit is incredibly resilient. Scary? Definitely, so professional help may be appropriate.

Make sure you hire someone who wants to get you over the trauma, rather than keep you in it. Time-consuming? Probably. So better get going right now. Good sex is waiting — in the present.

Popularity: unranked [?]

Category : Blog
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