Tag Archives: cohabiting

Should I See Shades of Grey?

Image by© Tetyana Stakhanova | Dreamstime.com

The book series 50 Shades of Grey was hugely successful – if you go by the number of books sold. But how do you measure success when it comes to the relational impact of the books? 

Do these stories of sado-masochistic extra-marital sex help those who read them in forming and sustaining healthy long-term relationships – or hurt them?

And now comes the movie version. Should you buy a ticket and fill your mind with the message of Grey? Continue reading Should I See Shades of Grey?

Loneliness and the Value of You

(Image by© Adina Nani | Dreamstime.com)

Loneliness is complex.

Have you ever been in the middle of a big group of people and felt all alone? Probably all of us have. Loneliness is not necessarily a matter of having someone around us – even happily married people sometimes drift apart emotionally and wind up sharing a bed together, yet feel desperately alone.

So when it comes to dealing with loneliness there are no simplistic answers. But probably all of realize there is a danger in being alone. Continue reading Loneliness and the Value of You

Too Physical Too Soon? The Dangers of Sex in Dating

The book Jane Eyre has as a central theme a scary mystery. Once the leading character, Jane, meets a man (Rochester) who finally seems to truly care for her – she finds that there is some darkly mysterious and dreadful serious problem which he is hiding in his house. She perceives there is someone there besides her who is involved with this man. And this someone seems terrifying. Continue reading Too Physical Too Soon? The Dangers of Sex in Dating

Is He or She the One? Part 2

The one may be closer than you think.
The secret to finding the one can be learned from successful couples…

In Part 1 of this discussion we saw that the idea of finding the one certainly works well for Hollywood movies and romance novels – but it is based on a fantasy view of life. It also tends to be based on a selfish motive – obviously a poor way to get into a long-term love relationship. Couples who buy into this idea and get together based upon the emotions and strong feelings of the moment tend to end up disillusioned – those romantically glorious breathless moments are just that; moments. They will not last. Those indescribable internal stirrings are insufficient to sustain a long-term love relationship. Continue reading Is He or She the One? Part 2

Sexual Compatibility – Take a Test Drive? Part I

Sexual Compatibility - Take a Test Drive?
Sexual Compatibility is an idea rarely challenged – but should you look more carefully into this concept and learn a better way to great sex?

Sexual compatibility is nearly an unchallenged concept. It sort of makes sense – sex is a big part of our lives. Before we get too serious about someone, shouldn’t we make sure we are sexually compatible? What if we were to get married and only then find out that things are kind of dull or awkward in the sack?

What is Sexual Compatibility?

Sexual compatibility is an interesting notion.It is much like the idea of the right-person. If you meet the right person the relationship will just magically work out. See this link to find out what is wrong with the right person concept, and this link to see how to truly find a person you can have a good relationship with.

Sexual Compatibility is the idea that if you are meant to be with someone, then the sex will pretty much be awesome from the very first time. Where did this idea come from? Certainly not from reality!

The media of our culture has handed us  the concept that good sex is a product that we shop for. You test someone out and they are either good at sex with you or not. In other words, a guy might meet a gal whom he finds very attractive and sweet. They have long talks and enjoy each other’s company immensely. But of course, although she seems really great – the question lingers in his mind; are they sexually compatible. So he pushes her on a date in a private location, and this sweet young gal is just kind of unspectacular in the back seat. She doesn’t seem to enjoy the experience, and is hesitant to engage him again on a future date. Game over. Continue reading Sexual Compatibility – Take a Test Drive? Part I

Relationship Skills – Learn Them

Study to acquire relationship skills
We study a lot of things in school – how about studying relationship skills? The payoff can be huge!

Relationship skills are critically needed – good relationships don’t just happen magically. I’ve known a lot of people who were successful by the world’s standards – good jobs, lots of money, and high social status. It has been amazing how many of these folks are miserable because their primary love relationship was faltering or had failed.

But consider this; my youngest daughter recently received her drivers permit. To do so, she had to study the drivers manual for our state and learn the rules of the road, highway signs, regulations, and emergency procedures. Then she took numerous practice tests online. I took her to the DMV for an eye test and a comprehensive knowledge test.

Now, if she wants to get a license and drive by herself, she must get at least 50 hours of training behind the wheel or complete an approved driver’s education course. Driving a car isn’t that complex – but it has serious consequences when done wrong; thus training is required. Continue reading Relationship Skills – Learn Them

The Ideal Romantic Man In Chick Flicks

The romantic man.
Chick flicks may present an unrealistic image of what a romantic man can be – but we men can learn a lot about what women want in a man from them.

The romantic man – idolized in the film genre known as chick flicks.

I have a confession to make – I am a man and I watch chick flicks. Please don’t tell my manly guy friends.

Here’s the deal. I have a wonderful wife whom I just adore. I also have 3 daughters that I also love and they enjoy watching romantic movies. Over the years I have come to appreciate the film genre known as “chick flicks.”

As a romantically minded man who is involved in helping relationships thrive I watch these movies; but not just for the enjoyment of the film itself. I analyze them. As one definition describes this type of film, they mainly “deal with love and romance and are primarily targeted to a female audience.” That is exactly why I watch them; they have been a huge money maker for movie producers because they appeal strongly to something in the heart of the typical lady. So as I watch these romantic plots unfold, I try to discern exactly what it is about the romantic man in the stories that women find so appealing. As my wife and daughter sit beside me with dreamy tear-filled eyes, I am taking notes.

We guys can certainly learn a lot about how to love ladies through a chick flick. Continue reading The Ideal Romantic Man In Chick Flicks

All You Need Is Love? What Is Love?

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image20330668The Beatles sang “All You Need is Love.” The Captain and Tennille proclaimed “Love Will Keep us Together.” The J. Geils Band declared that “Love Stinks.” (You may have to research these bands of my youth, I suppose they are oldies now!)

It’s an interesting cycle, repeated every day the walls of my younger Facebook friends. One of them will suddenly declare themselves in a relationship. As the excitement grows, the words grow poetically dramatic. “I’m so in love! You are my everything, I can’t wait to see you again! It is agony to be without you.”

At some point, especially for lovers in their teens, the confused and angry posts begin, and the status changes to “single.”

Is love this fleeting? The subject of so many songs, books, and movies – can it just escape us in such a short time?

Of course, if you’ve been hanging with this blog for a while, you already know the problem. The problem, especially in our culture in America, is confusion over the feeling that is called love.

It happens like this. We meet someone at school, a coffee shop,  or at work – and there is this sudden attraction. We find ourselves drawn to them, and as we begin to talk with them, the excitement and enchantment with this person grows. It’s kind of a “whoosh” sensation in your heart, it just seems to happen to you, as if fate had drawn you together. We are definitely interested in them, and they seem to be interested in us. Our thoughts start to dwell on them, we start fantasizing about spending more time with them – could this be the one for me? There just seems to be a natural and exciting chemistry between you; surely this relationship was just meant to be. This has got to be love! Yes, I have fallen in love! Continue reading All You Need Is Love? What Is Love?

Shacking Up, Marriage, or What?

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image3292869The enchanting actress Diane Kruger of National Treasure fame put it this way:

“Without sounding pessimistic, I learned that I don’t believe in marriage. I believe in a commitment you make in your heart. There’s no paper that will make you stay.” (Glamour Magazine interview)

She expresses an understandable and widely held sentiment. A lot of people look at the failure of marriages around them and decide that maybe it’s time to try some other type of relational arrangement.

The question is; what really works? Can you, as Ms. Kruger implies, just trust your heart to guide you into a great, safe, fulfilling, and long-term relationship?

What this actress and many other folks in our society are recommending is cohabitation. This is also known as living together, shacking up, or other colloquialisms. Regardless of what you call it, we do not have to wonder – the statistics are in. Continue reading Shacking Up, Marriage, or What?