All Articles Tagged "communication"
Since the film Bucket List came out in 2007, most of us haven’t just heard of bucket lists, we’ve got one. Mine includes: traveling internationally, getting over my irrational fear of karaoke, and finishing a book I started writing years ago.
Bucket lists reflect our unique dreams and desires, which makes them deeply personal. They’re also inspirational: They remind us of what we want to accomplish and of the qualities we hope to honor more fully before we die. In my case, we’re talking about adventure, creativity and overcoming challenges, to name but a few. Viewed through the lenses of doing (what we want to experience) and being (who we aspire to be) bucket lists aren’t just a boon to our personal growth. They also benefit our romantic relationships.
Research shows that trying new things together reinforces relationship happiness. Novelty not only provides more ways for us to connect, it gives us a new, and renewed, perspective on our partners.
For couples, creating and checking items off a bucket list energizes your relationship.
How do you go about creating a couples bucket list? Start with these three questions.
- What new experiences and adventures do we yearn to have with each other?
- What do we want to create together as a couple?
- Who do I most want to be in our relationship?
Feel free to answer these questions jointly. Or you can respond separately and then compare notes, highlighting areas of overlap. Focus on the big picture if you notice differences. For example, don’t assume that your wish for more romance and your partner’s interest in a course on Tantric sex mean you don’t agree. My guess is you share a desire for more intimacy, maybe passion, too. So ask yourselves:
What might be possible for me, and for us, if I tried what my partner suggests?
Unlike items on our most common to-do list — buy milk, pay bills, etc — it’s easy to defer our relationship bucket list (and our individual one, too) to some vague future. “We’ll explore our sensuality after our kids leave home,” we tell ourselves, or “we’ll take a cross-country road-trip after we retire.”
Read more about relationships at YourTango.com
From Single Black Male
As of late, stories of side chick pregnancies and simultaneous engagements have become commonplace. I personally know a woman who was sexually involved with a man who later told her that around the same time they were sexually involved, he had gotten engaged to another woman. The latest story from Ebony editor, Jamliah Lemieux, compelled me to write about this issue.
Long story short, Lemieux was in a relationship with a man for two years. Although their relationship was “on the rocks,” they continued to engage in intercourse. Five months into her pregnancy, he became engaged to another woman. Can you say messy?! This story, coupled with my friends’ stories (more than one of my friends has experienced this), and Gabrielle Union’s and Eudoxie’s stories beg the question, is this the new normal?
These situations also led to further questions like…
1) If a man is in a relationship with one woman that he feels will lead to marriage, why not break it off with the other?
2) If a man is in a relationship that will lead to marriage, does he think it is ok to have sex with other women until or unless he is married? Does he not consider this cheating?
3) What makes a man decide to marry one woman and not another if he still obviously has the strong desire to be in relationship with both?
To put it simply, this is not ok. Men often justify this behavior by either saying the man was obviously not feeling the girl he did not propose to, or that the other woman wasn’t his “girlfriend.” What does a title have to do with it if the “other” woman is getting girlfriend privileges? Furthermore, simply avoiding a title doesn’t change anything in terms responsibility.
Many female commenters attacked Lemieux for not knowing she was the side chick, or that her ex was that serious about someone else. It is likely that Lemieux wanted to be pregnant by her ex, but if the ex did not want the same, why continue to have unprotected sex with her and give her false hope? He knew she was in love with him , so why not have enough respect for her (and your new chick) to say, “you’re not the person I want to be with,” and bounce?
Read more about men and condom less sex at SingleBlackMale.org
It all begins with the first contact we have with a man and we ask ourselves, “does he like me?” However, at this point, men are on a completely different page, and this is helpful for women to understand.
- If he writes to you, calls you, talks to you, asks you out, or is sitting across the table from you — this means HE LIKES YOU! Generally, men don’t shop, they buy. They walk into a store and buy a shirt or a pair of shoes. They know what they want quickly and go for it.
- So, yes, he likes you. But he’s not sure you like him. This is also good for women to know, because he may treat the first date like a job interview. (He likes you, so he wants to impress you.)
Men are very clear that women are in the driver’s seat when it comes to relationships. Think of men as being the car. Women encourage them and they step on the gas. We let them know our boundaries and they step on the brake. When I tell my female coaching clients these facts, they usually don’t believe me. However, over time, the women start to understand that believing these facts is empowering.
Back to my first comment of “does he like me?” I tell my coaching clients that the first question they should ask instead is, “do I like him?” Remember… he already knows he likes you or he wouldn’t be there. So, how do you know if you like him? To figure this out, ask yourself:
- What traits do I like in men?
- What do I want and need from a relationship with a man?
- What traits do they have to have?
- What traits would be deal breakers?
- The answers to these questions start out with asking yourself:
- What’s important to me?
- What am I passionate about?
- What turns me on? What turns me off?
In my five years of coaching, I often ask new female coaching clients to define who they are (mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually) and what they bring to a relationship. Many women don’t really know because they haven’t thought about it. And when I ask them what they want and need in a man in these same categories, they often don’t know that either.
Here’s an important truth: Men fall in love with us when we’re being our authentic selves.
Have you ever had this experience? You meet a man and he makes your heart race, your body run hot, and your thoughts turn to mush? And then you start thinking you can’t talk about your true feelings around him, you can’t laugh, eat, and behave like the real you? Is it then a surprise when he ends up not attracted to you?
Read more about love at YourTango.com
Have you ever thought that the city you love in has something to do with your love life? Finding a scapegoat for your unhappy love life can just feel good. Who doesn’t want someone to blame, so why not the city you live in?
A recent study by CreditDonkey.com assessed cities across America to see where love goes wrong most often. Four factors were considered by city in this report:
- The average length of marriage by state is a sign of how happy people are in their committed relationships. The national average is 19.4 years, which isn’t bad. And the shortest marriages are found in our nation’s capital, Washington DC, with just 12.4 years. Maybe politics and love don’t make such good bed fellows.
- The Gallup Healthways Well-being Index assesses healthy behavior, as well as emotional and physical health among other things for people in 152 cities across the US. If you’re happily married or in love, you’re more likely to rank well on this index.
- The number of dating services shows the demand for singles services in a city. It might also point to one way to cope with breaking-up, as the newly single search for love again.
- The number of gonorrhea cases reported by the Center for Disease Control was looked as a reason why people break-up. When you think about it, if you’re in amonogamous relationship, you aren’t likely to contract venereal disease that spreads through multiple partners.
Read more on dating and location at YourTango.com
1. Not real. Nice guys are too nice. No one can always be that nice unless they’re a saint. They are busy being nice instead of being real and women instinctually don’t trust that. Bad boys “keep it real.” Nice guys don’t want to upset the apple cart.
2. Respect. No one respects a doormat. Nice guys don’t set boundaries or make any real demands. A bad boy doesn’t let a woman walk all over him or control him. Women can’t respect a man they can control. No respect equals no attraction.
3. Predictable. Most people lead boring, predictable lives, so they’re attracted to people who are exciting and a bit unpredictable. Bad boys are always a challenge. Nice guys are never a challenge. Predictable plus no excitement plus no challenge equals I prefer a bad boy.
4. Mother Nature. Women are designed to nurture. However, instead of doing this with children, they often end up doing it with bad boys. They think their love will save them. Nice guys rarely need to be saved. Why Women Aren’t Attracted To Their Sons
Read more about dating bad boys at YourTango.com
Last year, Susan Patton, alum and mother of two Princeton sons, shared her dating tips on finding a husband while still in college in the Daily Princetonian newspaper. Her opinion on how coeds should spend more time looking for love than working on career sent shock waves through women of all ages.
This year, the rewritten op-ed piece appeared in the Wall Street Journal on Valentine’s Day. As a dating coach for women over 40, I can see what caused the fury. Here are six of Susan’s most annoying points for college girls:
- Insinuates that women should marry early. Over 30, single gals will likely compete with younger women and fail to land a decent husband
- Don’t fall for the old P.C. feminist line that educated ambitious women can’t have it all — great jobs and a family.
- You could marry a man who isn’t your intellectual equal if you wait, but what will you talk about if he doesn’t know Norwegian playwrights or medieval tapestries?
- Don’t have casual sex with a guy who could become your husband because men still don’t buy the cow if the milk is free.
- College is an environment teeming with like-minded, age appropriate single men and you’ll never find this concentration of single guys again.
- Women invest more in planning for their careers than their personal happiness.
Point #1 — Marry Early Or Else
Huffington Post shared an angry rebuttal written by Emma Gray who, at 26, says, “Thanks, but no thanks”. Like most of the response pieces, Emma’s hackles were raised by the idea that eating sushi and watching Downton Abby shouldn’t be enough for today’s young, career-minded women. Instead, they should work on getting a husband.
Emma goes on to point out that young women like her are looking for love, working on careers that are not a waste of time, enjoying sex without preventing them from finding love, and still value marriage and motherhood. As a dating coach for women, that’s good to hear. Of course you can find love and marry after college! Women do not have an expiration date. See point #5 below.
Read more about dating advice at YourTango.com
From Single Black Male
Black women are destined for a life of singledom. Haven’t you heard?
It’s been estimated that 42 percent of us haven’t married. That’s twice that of white women. Eeeekkkk!
And if we wanted to get married, 1 out of 12 of us wouldn’t, even if every black man in America married a black woman today.
While there are a myriad of reasons attributed to this bleak outlook (i.e. black men don’t make enough, aren’t tall enough, aren’t out of county jail long enough), one that is not often explored is girl code.
Girl code is that asinine set of rules that preclude a woman from dating a man. A friend woman I’ve spoken to twice in the last year dated had a few sexual encounters with over the course of the month a man five years ago; therefore, he’s off limits to me. Feeling pressured, women avoid pursuing relationships with men that have a past – and limited – history with friends of friends or even a close friend for sake of a code that leaves them desiring a relationship.
Why voluntarily sabotage a chance to have a meaningful relationship for the sake of a rule that is nothing more than a cockblock in disguise?
While I don’t advocate dating your friend’s ex-fiancé or baby daddy, everyone else has the potential to be fair game. Rules are meant to broken, and here’s when you should consider breaking the girl code:
1. The person is an acquaintance, not a friend.
Yes, there are levels to this sh*t. I often loathe quoting rappers, but if the shoe fits…wear it. There’s a difference between an acquaintance and a friend, and all too often we use the two interchangeably. Attending happy hours at the local bar and grille and discussing the latest episode of Love and Hip Hop qualifies one as an acquaintance. Eating Sunday dinner at one another’s home and helping plan one’s pending nuptials qualifies one as a friend. Therefore, if an acquaintance dated a man a few years ago or even a few months ago, you are perfectly well within your dating rights to also date this man. Allowing someone you have no depth of a relationship with to significantly impact your dating life is a missed opportunity if you truly desire to be in a serious relationship.
Read more about Girl Code at SingleBlackMale.org
I’m totally confused about what to do in my relationship. “Alex” and I dated once before a few years ago and it didn’t work out. I wasn’t where I wanted to be professionally and neither was he, so we broke up. He has three children (all from his ex) and I have a son. My son doesn’t care for him, but I’ve fallen in love and I can’t figure out why. He never finished college and I have two degrees. He makes a good living but it’s manual labor and it’s taking a toll on his health. I love that he accepted me at my worst and still loves me when I’m thriving and succeeding. The thing is, I feel like I’m settling. His manners are subpar, he dresses like a 9-year-old boy, and he never helps in the house when he’s over, unless I nag him. I don’t know if I want to raise three more children, and again, my son can’t stand him. I don’t know if I’m with him because the sex is amazing and because he loves me or if I just don’t want to be alone. I do love him; I’m just not sure if it’s enough to overlook his flaws. Help.
Confused in California
Read more Dr. Sherry’s response at Essence.com
According to an L.A. Times article that references results from a Pew Research Center study, a record number of American women are “marrying down.”
Yes, apparently women in America are hooking up with and saying “I Do” to men who are less educated than they are.
Read more about marriage at EurWeb.com
I hate writing this. I’ve been dating a really great dude for about five months. We met online and we were feeling each other from day one. He’s Idris Elba fine, real smart, tall, funny, good job and no kids. This brings me to the problem.
Have you ever heard of a micropen*s? First he said he wanted to wait until we were sure about each other to have sex and I thought that just went with his thoughtful personality.. Then after four months he confessed that he had condition called “micropen*s”. And if I had a problem with it I could bounce and he’d understand. Basically, he said he was really, really, really tiny. I’ve experienced different sizes so I told him that I didn’t care.
We finally got naked and OMG. I was thinking a regular small pen*s but NO. Apparently a micropen*s is in a class by itself. Google it. A micropen*s is practically no pen*s and unfortunately he can’t enter me or anybody else. Yup. We can’t have sex.
Now I don’t know what to do. It was like being in Middle School. We can do everything else sexually speaking except intercourse. I’m sorry but sex is important to me and I never dreamed that I would ever look forward to a life without sex.
Should I cut and run or am I being shallow?
Read Abiola’s response at Essence.com