Should you have SEX on the First Date?

This is quite a controversial topic since everyone will tell you left and right NOT TO DO IT. To some extent, I agree. But on the flip side, there’s also that voice that tells you to QUIT PLAYING MIND GAMES and just do what you honestly feel. Women, in particular, are hounded by this. We women are always stuck with having to use our brain, our heart or our libido. Here, I will outline what you should consider before picking either option.

WHY YOU SHOULDN’T DO IT:

  • Because you have to get to know the person more before you decide to let him/her into such an intimate part of your life. For the ladies, you don’t want to give him a freebie for simply knowing you. You feel that he has to earn it. Besides, the chasing game can be fun, if you have a lot of time to spare.

 

  • Because sex comes with consequences. You don’t want to contract an STD (God forbid!) or get pregnant by/ father someone who is not invested in you or you’re not invested in. I know of a girl who slept with someone on her first Tinder date. She got pregnant and when she told the father of the baby, he completely disowned her and the child. This wouldn’t have been the case if he got to know her on a deeper level and really established (at least) a friendship with her. She’s now raising the child on her own, which is a brave thing to do… but also extremely difficult.

 

  • Because the age old adage may be true“Easy come easy go.” A lot of men I have talked to say that the easier it is to sleep with a woman, the easier it is for them to leave her. A male friend of mine said “If it’s easy for her to sleep with me, I can’t shake off the idea of how many others were there like me she had already gone to bed with on the first date.” The feminist side of me felt like arguing my way around this statement, but apparently, a lot of men agree.

 

  • Because you want to keep your reputation. If men sleep around, he’s branded as someone full of machismo. He’s considered as an idol among his male peers. But, put a woman in his shoes, and she’s immediately branded a slut. I am completely against slut shaming, but this is something that society hasn’t refigured yet. It’s just something we have to roll with, and protesting is out of the question.

 

WHY YOU SHOULD DO IT:

  • Because life is short and you wouldn’t want to waste your time. This is pretty self-explanatory. Who knows when you will meet this person again? By the time you do, you may not have the same feelings towards him anymore. Also, as some of my male friends point out, “Before you buy the car, you have to test drive it.” Same concept applies to sex. You don’t want to invest a whole lot of feelings for this person, and then find out months later that you’re far from being sexually compatible.

 

  • Because your attraction level is so strong and you just can’t help yourself. You may have known this person for quite a while, and you may be so physically attracted. When this happens, you chuck out the decision making struggle and just go with it.

 

  • Because you want to be true to yourself. Enough with the mind games. You want his person and you want him/her NOW.

 

  • Because it’s been so long. You’ve been out of the dating scene for awhile and the idea of someone coming on to you is just too irresistible. You tell yourself, just this once, like it isn’t gonna hurt in the morning.

 

  • Because you don’t care what people say. What you do is your business. Not theirs. In your mind, they’re just jealous because they’re not getting some. And you are!

 

A FINAL WORD. 

Whatever it is you decide to choose, just know that either option comes with its own set of benefits and consequences. Just always be SAFE. Wear condoms, take your pills, whatever floats your boat. At the end of the day, experiences, whatever they may be, influence our future in one way or the other. It’s all up to you what you make of it.

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EMAIL ME: breakupcoachonline@gmail.com

6 Reasons You Should Absolutely Delete All Those Photos With Your Ex

When The Weeknd deleted all hints of Selena from his Instagram, people definitely noticed. Compared to the fact that both celebrities immediately returned to their respective celebrity exes, this part of the breakup was by far the most relatable. Who hasn’t purged selfies with their now-ex? It can feel dramatic and cathartic.

But clearing out digital memories can also be complicated. According to Dr. Jesse Fox, Assistant Professor in the School of Communication at Ohio State University, “the hardest part about being on social media in this situation is that your business becomes very public [during] a time when most people would prefer to keep things private. Everything you do is going to be scrutinized or interpreted by people in different ways.”

While getting rid of your ex’s photos on social media feels like it invites gossip, it’s actually a much healthier (and infinitely faster) way to get over the heartbreak. Here are seven reasons to absolutely do it:

1. Staring at your photos might make you forget why you broke up in the first place.

According to a study by Dr. Fox and Dr. Robert S. Tokunaga on “Romantic Partner Monitoring After Breakups,” keeping tabs on an ex on social media led to “greater current distress over the breakup, more negative feelings, more sexual desire, more longing for the ex-partner, and lower personal growth.” And even if you unfriended them, holding onto the flawlessly-filtered highlight reel of your relationship does you no favors.

“You have a higher desire to be back in the relationship because you’re looking at the best times,” says Dr. Fox. “You’re getting this rose-colored view of what your relationship was like, and if you’re constantly reminding yourself of it, it’s going to be harder to move on.”

2. It forces you to remember how much everyone else loved you as a couple, too.

Yes, your Eiffel Tower pic together is your most-liked Insta to date. It also needs to go. “There are other people’s recollections of your relationship that are really hard to avoid,” says Dr. Fox. “You get that social reinforcement when you’re in a relationship, so often seeing those comments and likes from friends, your partner’s family, or people you didn’t even know before you met your partner, can also be really stressful in the wake of a breakup.”

Hell is other people’s heart-eye emojis under your romantic beach grams. Delete, delete, delete.

3. Future partners might feel like you’re still into your ex.

According to Dr. Fox, “there’s such visibility of your former relationship to future partners” when you keep up old photos. Even if the breakup was a long time coming and ended mutually, your new Tinder date might worry when they see pics of you together from only a month ago.

“I would ask yourself why you want to keep them [on your profile]. What are other people going to get from seeing this information?”

4. It makes it so easy to creep on other aspects of your ex’s life.

Even if you unfollowed them on Instagram and spared yourself the unexpected updates on their lives, if they’re still tagged in your pics together, you’re only a click away from luring yourself back to their page. “It’s easily accessible – you go out and have two glasses of wine at happy hour and then it’s right there in your hand at any moment,” says Dr. Fox, who recommends taking the extra step of temporarily deleting the apps off your phone post-breakup. “If you take the apps off your phone, then you have to reinstall the apps, login, remember your password, and by the time you had to process and take all of those steps, hopefully you’ve gained a little mindfulness about the situation.”

Basically, when in doubt, block it all (at least for now).

5. If your ex is a remotely kind human, they’ll understand why you need to do it.

If your ex is capable of basic empathy, they won’t prioritize the optics of your past relationship over your emotional needs. “Have a conversation about it; maybe it’s better to de-friend each other or stop following each other for a little while,” says Dr. Fox. “And then when you’ve moved on and you’re not ruminating over the relationship, then you can make that connection again.”

And if your ex is the type of person who would gleefully screenshot your profile and brag about how hurt you must be if you deleted the pics: congratulations, you dodged a bullet. All the more reason to remove every trace of them from your phone.

6. There’s no good reason not to.

If you think you might want to look at the photos again someday, you can always save them on a hard drive that you don’t access right now. “It’s not that they necessarily have to disappear; you just need them out of your line of vision every day if you expect and want to get over the relationship,” says Dr. Fox.

Choosing to keep them up on your profile that you know you check multiple times a day is choosing to stall moving on – whether it comes denial that it’s really over, or denial that you maybe miss your ex, or just a general fear of people judging your post-breakup pain. If you truly want to live your life and reconnect with friends and one day be ready for a new relationship, the remnants of your old one only hold you back.

***

By:   for Cosmopolitan

10 Types of Sex People Who’ve Been Dating Forever Have

1. Angry Make-up Sex. Make as many arguments as you want for being perpetually single and free. You’ll never get to have make up sex where you simultaneously can’t wait to not be fighting anymore, but also let out any leftover aggression. There’s a very strong argument for this being the unequivocal best kind of sex.

2. Casual Masturbation. Sometimes, you can’t be bothered to go through all fanfare and hullabaloo of sex. So instead, you just rub one out through your pajama flap while you lay in bed together. Ah, romance!

3. “Let’s Get Out of Our Comfort Zone” Sex. It should be noted that “comfort zone” is subjective. Some couples might see it as buying a pair of fur handcuffs. Others might just want to introduce a few new positions or watch some porn together. Other couples might go to orgies. Who knows! But once you’ve been in a relationship for long enough, there comes a time where one of you says, ‘Hey, I think we should really switch things up.’

4. Incredibly Lazy Sex. There are days where you wake up hungover, or groggy. There are nights where you’re tired but horny. In a long-term relationship, it’s fine to just go at it with the bare minimum every once in awhile.

5. Rediscovering-sex Sex. In a long enough relationship, you go through peaks and valleys in the amount of sex you’re having. Any long-term couple has had a bit of a dry spell together followed by a tornado of intimacy.

6. We’re-Supposed-to-be-Ready-in-Five-Minutes Sex. Sometimes you just can’t help it and you wind up wildly late to that fancy dinner thing. It’s not his fault you look irresistible dressed up.

7. Vacation Sex aka They’re-Going-to-Have-to-Light-This-Hotel-Room-on-Fire-After-We-Leave-Because-They’ll-Never-Get-Rid-of-the-Smell Sex. Seriously, how is every hotel not a biohazard by now?

8. Baby-Making Sex. At some point in the relationship, couples might decide to have kids. And having sex with the goal of procreation in mind is a whole different beast with two backs. There are schedules to adhere to and menstrual cycles to keep track of, and it can sometimes even feel like an obligation. Like how you might love McDonald’s french fries, but if you worked there you’d get sick of them.

9. We-Actually-Have-Time-to-Ourselves Sex. As couples get older, their obligations change and pile-up. Promotions at work mean spending more time at the office. Friends and kids and the kids of friends and your kid’s friends all eat up your schedule. Sometimes, you have sex just because you actually have a few hours to yourself.

10. Sex. Sex doesn’t really change that much. Long-term couples are still having sex whenever they want. And while they’ve got more experiences together under their belt, they’re still just having good old- fashioned sex.

*******

By: Frank Kobola for Cosmopolitan

When your partner is also your best friend

It goes without saying, you don’t have to be “best friends” to have a great relationship (some people even gag at that idea). But while others might think of you as insular or clingy, you know better.

1. You started out as friends. 

Great things take time. Baked potatoes, fully mature redwood trees, and friendships that turn into relationships. First dates feel different than first hangouts. You really get to know each other’s personality when you’re not as worried about trying to impress the other person.

2. He makes you laugh all the time and you make him crack up. 

It’s not just about how he makes you feel, or how great the sex is, or how well you work together. When you hang out, you wind up cracking each other up so much you can’t breathe. Some of your favorite memories are the two of you doing the dumbest stuff and laughing about it nonstop.

3. He always wants you around. 

It doesn’t matter if it’s a “guys’ night” or a five-hour road trip; he wants to hang out with you. And it feels natural too. When he’s out with friends, you never get the vibe of “oh, he brought his girlfriend along.” You’re his friend, so you’re everyone else’s friend. Basically, all his guys just sees you as “that one friend he also has sex with”… which is a compliment, really.

4. You always know what he’s thinking. 

It’s not quite like you can read each other’s minds, but you’re so comfortable with each other that it really feels like that sometimes.

5. He’s seen you through your worst moments. 

He’s gotten you through some of your darkest moments, however you define them. Even when other friends drop off or stop calling, he’s there for you, and you’re always there for him.

6. You can spend a day just hanging out. 

It’s not that you both love being couch sloths all day, but you could be and still have a good time. You don’t need to be making Instagrammable moments constantly to feel like you’re having a good time. All you really need is each other.

7. Other couples hate you just a little. 

They might not say it to your face, but you can tell they’re insanely jealous of the chemistry you share. You can tell. Basically, you make other couples look boring and they can’t stand it.

8 You don’t feel like you need time apart from each other. 

You know how to prioritize “you” time when there’s something you want to get done just for yourself, but everything you do just feels somehow better when you’re with them.

9. He trusts you deeply. 

Not just in the basic ways, like trusting you not to cheat on him when you go out. That barely even counts; that’s just assuming you’re not going to be a garbage person. He also trusts you with things he’s never told anyone, like his embarrassing secrets.

10. It still feels like you just started dating. 

You still have this energy that’s stuck around even though you’ve been dating for years. That “honeymoon phase” never really ended for you.

***

From: Cosmopolitan by Frank Kobola

17 Signs You’re Into Someone More Than They Are Into You

Finding out you’re putting everything into a relationship or casual thing, and the other person isn’t, can be utterly heartbreaking. It’s a truly horrible feeling knowing that you’re crushin’ on someone harder than they are on you. But do you know what? Figuring that out and accepting it is a whole lot easier, healthier, and better for you in the long run than flogging the dead horse that is your relationship.

Everybody’s different and has totally varied relationship expectations. So just because your bae is guilty of a few signs, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not into you (it could be their personality that makes them not touchy-feely or romantic). But if you’re consistently finding a lot of the below signs to be spot-on, it’s best to have a long hard think about whether the feelings you have are truly requited.

  1. When they don’t answer right away when you call them, you find yourself trying again before they return your call.
  2. They seem unenthusiastic to hear from you (or are always preoccupied) when they do pick up.
  3. When you do speak, they either keep it short and sweet or don’t seem engaged in the conversation. Maybe they’re happy to talk about themselves but switch off when you’re talking.
  4. When they consistently take ages to reply to texts on a regular basis and offer no excuse or apology.
  5. When you meet up, it’s slightly awkward and almost cold when they greet you.
  6. Your attempt at a passionate “hello kiss” when you greet them is returned as a peck on the cheek.
  7. Your PDA attempts are always met with a side swerve of the lips or hands, or they never initiate physical affection. Obvs, some people are just not into PDA, so don’t rely on this too heavily.
  8. The natural warmth and easy-going vibe you put on when you hang out seems to be returned with a stilted and somewhat awkward attitude.
  9. When you go to sleep at night and reach out to show affection, they consistently don’t respond or they show a lack of interest.
  10. They do little to participate when you’re having sex and it feels like you’re merely going through the motions. The obvious physical and emotional distance creates an overall lack of intimacy.
  11. While you’re willing to be generous with your time, money, and resources, they’re cold and stingy.
  12. You show your partner off and include them in family and friend gatherings but they seem reluctant to include you and it feels like they’re keeping you at arm’s length.
  13. When you express your feelings about them, it’s either returned with little to no enthusiasm, or awkwardness.
  14. They don’t show much (or any!) interest in you and your world, but you have all the time for them no matter whats going on in your life.
  15. When it comes to special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries, you make an effort with the present to make them feel special. But they make little or no effort, and nothing about their attempts screams attention to detail.
  16. You’re happy to be romantic, but they treat and talk to you like you’re a friend—doing things like talking about their attraction to others when they’re around you.
  17. Your gut instinct tells you they aren’t as into you, but rather than raise the issue, you ignore the feeling because you’re afraid of what they might say or that you’ll lose them.

****

From Cosmopolitan UK by Paisley Gilmour

On Ending Your Relationship by Christmas

Has something about your relationship changed? Can you put your finger on what it is? Sometimes it’s obvious: perhaps your partner has cheated on you or their behaviour has become unacceptable, which makes it clear to you that the relationship needs to end. Other times, it’s more a subtle shift in the way you feel, which has happened over a period of time and you find yourself questioning whether you can really see yourself with them long term. It’s often the latter situation which is the hardest to deal with and can come as a surprise to your partner when you tell them it’s over.

When I trained to be a relationship counsellor, I was told the key in any relationship is communication. Good communication generally leads to good relationships, poor communication will likely lead to a poor relationship. We often avoid communicating how we feel for fear of hurting our partner’s feelings, feeling guilty or not wanting to deal with potential confrontation. So, we ‘drift’ on and for a while it seems ok. Nothing bad is happening, but nothing good is happening either.

Then a significant event, or significant time of the year is approaching and the quality of our relationship comes into view again. You may start asking yourself: Do I really want to spend Christmas with them, pretending everything is ok when it’s not? What about New Year’s Eve? Do I want to celebrate seeing the New Year in with them, when I know that I’m just about to dump them?

So, is there ever a good time to end a relationship? I don’t think there is a straightforward answer to that question. For myself, I would rather know that it’s over, than find myself questioning and reflecting afterward, whether they only stayed with me out of pity. Some however, would say that it’s cruel to break up just before Christmas, as it would spoil it for everyone. Whenever you choose, it’s never going to be easy. Breaking up is painful and emotional for both parties. There can be regret, sadness and guilt.

If you are considering ending your relationship before the festive season there are a few questions to ask yourself first:

1. Why did you fall in love with your partner in the first place?

Figure out if there are remnants of those feelings that can be rekindled if you focus on them.

2. Has the ‘love light’ switched off?

I think that love is like a pilot light, sometimes it is strong and vivid and you can clearly see it glowing. Sometimes it is low and subtle, but still burning. If the love light for your partner has switched off, it’s unlikely that it will switch on again.

3. Have you been sending subtle messages that your feelings have changed?

We are sending subliminal messages all the time, so perhaps your partner is far more aware than you think they are about your feelings, and it won’t be a surprise when you tell them you no longer love them.

4. What have you valued from your relationship with them?

All relationships help us learn more about ourselves and what’s important in a relationship to us. You clearly loved them once, share with them what you will always remember about the relationship, along with helping them understand what has changed and why your feelings for them have changed.

Remaining with someone when you no longer love them is unfair to them and to you. Everyone has the right to be happy and to be equally loved in a relationship. Ending a relationship is never easy, but it can be done with consideration, honesty and empathy… even if it’s just before Christmas.

What to do if you decide to break up

Rebecca McCann, a relationship therapist from Click For Therapy advises, “When you know your relationship has ended you know, and there’s very little you can do to convince yourself otherwise. The holiday season is difficult if you are in a relationship you don’t want to be in. So firstly be 100% sure that it’s what you want, otherwise if you end up getting back together this will be forever linked to Christmas.

“If you are totally sure then be honest, and think about the logistics. Think about where you will go for Christmas, what you will do, have a plan in your head before you end the relationship so that you don’t get pulled back in by logistics or your partner convincing you to stay just because its Christmas for example.

“A plan will help you to stay firm in your resolve. The other thing is make sure that you have someone you trust to spend the holidays with, this is part of being kind to yourself. You deserve to enjoy the season as much as you can, but you will need to extra TLC to do this so give yourself a break.”

***

From: Cosmopolitan

We Were Never Together, So Why Can’t I Stop Thinking Of You?

You were never my boyfriend. Sure, we flirted, dancing together in your living room and exchanging back massages in your bedroom. Sure, we cuddled, pretending to watch television while our bodies were pressed together in an act more intimate than sex. Sure, we kissed, your lips against my mouth and neck while your hands cradled my hips. But we were never together, so why can’t I stop thinking of you?

You snuck winks at me when you realized everyone else was glancing away. You kept your arm around me when you saw them staring straight on. We had a connection that was more than casual. Real friendship mixed in with our flirtations. Laughter and inside jokes tangled in with the sexual tension. But neither of us did anything about it, so why can’t I stop thinking of you?

I can still hear your voice, lightly singing along in my car, hoping I couldn’t hear. Can still smell your cologne, with the scent that grew thicker as we hugged for a few moments too long. Still see your eyes, flicking down to my lips, waiting for another kiss we would pretend meant nothing. But it’s been months since we’ve actually seen each other, so why can’t I stop thinking of you?

We stopped talking out of nowhere. Lost contact on every platform in a world overflowing with ways to connect. We never said goodbye, and I still can’t figure out why that is. But if we ever ran into each other again, we wouldn’t acknowledge the lack of closure. No, we’d act like everything was normal, like we were two platonic friends, just like we always did. But nothing ever happened and nothing ever will, so why can’t I stop thinking of you?

I’ve been spending more time with myself, learning the ins and outs of my brain and body. Trying to find out who I am without you and what I want besides you. Realizing that enough “me” time can cure the loneliness you’ve infected me with. But I’m happy now, so why can’t I stop thinking of you?

I’ve met a new man who has stolen your title as the love of my life. He holds me like you did and kisses me like you did. Except he exists in the present tense while you’re just an exhausting memory floating around in the back of my brain. He’s never going to ghost or say goodbye. He’s nothing like you, not in the good ways or the bad. But he loves me, and he’s helped me learn to love me. He’s helped me learn a lot of things.

And that’s why I’ve finally stopped thinking of you.

***

From Thought Catalog by Holly Riordan

Why you’re doing your relationship wrong

 

Having come from an 8 year abusive relationship, I would have to say that the one I have right now with my current squeeze is refreshing. What makes it more beautiful is that prior to its inception, I had read Neale Donald Walsh’s Conversations with God, as recommended by a friend. The words that he wrote, as he claimed were told to him by God Himself, blew my mind.

In the book, he says that WE ALL GO INTO RELATIONSHIPS FOR THE WRONG REASONS. We always ask ourselves prior to getting in one, “What can I get from this? What can he/she give me in return? What’s in it for me?” 

And if you really think about it, if this is your frame of mind, the relationship is bound to FAIL. Because if you keep asking yourself what’s in it for you, you’re bound to have EXPECTATIONS. You want the person to be perfect. You want him/her to fulfill all your needs and wants etc. etc.

But what if he/she doesn’t? Then what?

Then you get disappointed. Then you start throwing a tantrum. Then the fights start.

In the book, Walsh says that we have to go into the relationship telling ourselves “Okay, this is the person that I want. And this is the love that I have to give. I am going into this relationship because I have all this love that I want to share.

It sounds pretty simple, but it spells a world of a difference!

When you have such a positive perspective and you think about love as something you GIVE and not something THAT HAS TO BE GIVEN TO YOU, you create a partnership. You create a real bond that’s not always looking for a return on investment. 

I got involved with my ex-boyfriend at the age of 19 and we were together till I turned 26. Looking back, it was silly of me to have been involved with someone so seriously because those were my developing years. I was so determined to marry him even though he would treat me badly. (Thank God I dodged that bullet!) But at the time, I forged on because in my head, “I’ve gone this far, I can’t give up now!” This resulted in many years of depression and loneliness, even though I was attached. I was waiting for my return on investment.

And when I didn’t get it, I was at a dead end.

There I was expecting that he would change. But he never did.

I learned later on that the kind of love I was giving him even when I was unhappy wasn’t love at all. I felt like a vendor who didn’t get paid. It felt like I was staying because he was indebted to me.

Fast forward to years later and after having read that life changing book, I now know better. Love now has become more of a want rather than a need. I want to be with him because I love him. Because I have all this love to give and he deserves it. I don’t mind if he doesn’t reply back within 5 minutes of receiving my text because  he may be driving. Before, I would dramatize scenarios in my head that the reason why he may not be replying was because he didn’t love me. But now, it feels so light to love this way. When you love and love and love and you don’t care about your return on investment. It just feels good to give it away. Now that infamous Bible quote really makes sense.

[“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.- 1 Corinthians 13:4-8]

I know what you’re thinking. How can I stop myself from expecting from him/her? If you think that this perspective is so one-sided, because it’s human nature to always look for how a situation can help you…

Then it’s simple. It isn’t love. It’s love that you seek from someone else but only you can give yourself.

What you have may not be love at all (in the complete sense of the word), but attention.

Before you enter a relationship, I think that it is vital that you are completely whole and that you completely love all parts of yourself before you can give it away. That sounds cliche but it makes the most sense when you think about it this way.

Your partner shouldn’t be the one having to call you beautiful all the time or singing you praises all the time. If he/she can’t, then let it go. Give it to yourself. The things that you expect him/her to do, do it for yourself. Do your best to fill all the voids so that way you won’t have to NEED anyone. And it would feel TEN TIMES MORE AMAZING to feel that you WANT to be with this person.

I have made this mindset my advocacy to share it with anyone who will listen. Believe me, that it makes a HUGE difference in how you perceive everything. If you’re reading this, I hope this post changes your life somehow.

xoxo,

Cristine

Is It Normal to Have a Crush When You’re in a Relationship?

Certain (annoying) people love to brag about how they tell their partner everything, as if a 100 percent disclosure rate is the key to a perfectly healthy relationship (it isn’t). There are some things you don’t necessarily need to tell your partner — like, for instance, how you think the guy who always spells your name wrong on your Starbucks cup is actually really cute. A spoiler: Having little crushes on people, even when you’re in the happiest relationship of your life, is both very common, and very normal. But if the feelings persist or you feel tempted to cross a line, those feelings are a sign that you need to ask yourself how happy you actually are with your current partner.

To ease everyone’s general concern about which feelings you’re allowed to have when you’re in a relationship, Rachel Sussman, a New York-based therapist and relationship expert, cleared up the air when it comes to the very messy territory of navigating extra-relationship crushes.

Drawing a line between crush and Crush

The definition of “having a crush” is extremely broad. A crush can be something as simple and light as a flittery feeling in your chest when you notice the cute barista is working at your local coffeeshop, or a deeper feeling of near-infatuation you feel for your “friend” in class who you’ve been studying with on a more frequent basis.

Sussman said the first definition, or having a light crush on a stranger or near-stranger, is perfectly harmless. “As human beings, we’re very visual,” she said. “We love a beautiful piece of art, we admire beauty. There’s nothing wrong with admiring a beautiful person on the street.” She even added that there’s nothing wrong with some mild flirting, as might be the case with the aforementioned cute barista. It’s fun to flirt! It’s a confidence boost! Go for it!

But, of course, flirting can cross a line if you’re in a monogamous, closed relationship with someone. Like, let’s say you start feeling like you have a crush on a coworker, or someone you know relatively well and see almost every day. It’s one thing to notice someone else is hot and want to flirt with that person almost as a sport, but it’s another for a crush to deepen into feelings that may cause distress in your relationship.

Sussman’s rule of thumb is that if it’s causing you distress, and doesn’t feel like a fleeting thing, you should take a step back and examine your relationship. Are you as happy as you say you are? Did something shift recently that caused the dynamic to change. Sussman mentioned things like a new job, starting grad school, moving to college, etc. can often cause a partner to feel neglected, or like they’re receiving less attention than they once were. Or if this is a relationship you’ve been in for a long time, maybe the crush that won’t go away is a sign that your tastes or personality has changed, and you and your partner are no longer fitting together like you once did.

“Oftentimes, the crush is just the tip of the iceberg,” Sussman said. “If you’re developing feelings for someone else, there may be something broken with your relationship.”

The case for not disclosing your crush

All this said, you shouldn’t rush home and immediately tell your partner about the cute barista (unless you’re in a relationship where discussing sexual fantasies like that is totally cool), or the actual crush you have on a coworker or someone more serious. Sussman’s advice is to figure out your own feelings before disclosing everything to your partner.

“Don’t go home and vomit this information unless you understand what’s behind it,” she said. “Oftentimes, these things can be very innocent, and once you put that out there that there’s someone you have a crush on, it’s very hard for the person that you give that information to to process it and let it go. You might be able to work it out and move on, but your [partner] might not be able to.”

If it turns out that the crush is actually something serious — like you have real feelings for someone else that you feel compelled to explore, or you realize that the crush is a sign you aren’t happy in your relationship — then that’s the conversation you should have with your partner. As Sussman said, the crush feelings for this other person are just (in some cases) the visible symptom of a deeper issue with your relationship.

Sussman also said these little crushes happen all the time — both with couples who’ve been together for decades, and with couples who’ve been together for a month. For the latter category, she would prompt you to ask yourself if you’re still in “singles mode,” and just aren’t yet used to being in a monogamous situation. Or maybe it’s that, a month in, you realize a closed relationship isn’t what you want. If that’s the case — don’t be in one! Her advice is to “play the field,” keep dating, and have as many crushes as your little heart can handle.

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From: Cosmo India by Hannah Smothers 

 

The 10 Habits of Long-Lasting Couples

We’ve all swooned at the adorable stories of couples who spend their whole lives together, and are just as much in love with each other in old age as they were right at beginning. But what is their secret? How do they manage to maintain, and strengthen, their love through the years?

Well, psychiatrist Mark Goulston has published his advice. Read on to discover his 10 tips for lasting relationships:

1. Go to bed together. This doesn’t mean go have sex every single night, but rather go to bed at the same time. Dr. Goulston reckons that “happy couples resist the temptation to go to bed at different times” even if one gets back up shortly after. There’s nothing like a bedtime cuddle!

2. Work out your common interests. It’s fine if he loves rugby while you’re into painting, and you shouldn’t even worry if the thing you find most boring is what really gets him going. But Dr. Goulston reminds us that the initial passion won’t last forever, so you need to make sure there’s some substance behind your relationship.

“If common interests aren’t present, happy couples develop them,” he says. “Don’t minimize the importance of activities you can do together that you both enjoy. At the same time, be sure to cultivate interests of your own; this will make you more interesting and prevent you from appearing too dependent.” Got it.

3. Hold hands. Next time you’re out together, make sure you’re in sync by holding one another’s hand. A public sign of affection, Dr. Goulston advises that it’s a sign of real comfort. “It’s more important to be with your partner than to see the sights along the way,” he tells us.

4. Always trust and try to forgive. Obviously this depends on the severity of your disagreement, but as a general rule Dr. Goulston thinks it’s key to make “trusting and forgiving, rather than distrusting and begrudging” your default setting after an argument.

5. Focus on what they do right, not what they do wrong. Positive reinforcement is an age-old concept used with children and even the training of animals. But it’s still important for fully grown adults too. So compliment your partner when they deserve it and try not to look for things they do wrong. “You can always find something,” Dr. Goulston says.

But that works both ways; “If you look for what he or she does right, you can always find something too. It all depends on what you want to look for. Happy couples accentuate the positive.”

6. Don’t forget to hug. Dr. Goulston urges us to hug our partner every single day (if circumstance allows). “Our skin has a memory of ‘good touch’ (loved), ‘bad touch’ (abused), and ‘no touch’ (neglected),” he explains. “Couples who say hello with a hug keep their skin bathed in the ‘good touch,’ which can inoculate your spirit against anonymity in the world.”

7. Say “I love you” and “have a good day” every morning. Seems obvious, but it’s an important one. Saying something caring like that first thing will set the other up for their day. “It’s a great way to buy some patience and tolerance as each partner sets out each day to battle traffic jams, long lines, and other annoyances.”

8. Say good night, every night. Regardless of how you feel. Never go to bed on an argument. According to Dr. Goulston, even the gesture of saying good night “tells your partner that, regardless of how upset you are with him or her, you still want to be in the relationship. It says that what you and your partner have is bigger than any single upsetting incident.”

9. Check in with them throughout the day. Calling your partner to see how their day is going is “a great way to adjust expectations so that you’re more in sync when you connect after work.” So if your other half has had a nightmare of a day, you know what to expect. And you can probably get the Ben & Jerry’s, in an attempt to cheer them up.

10. Be proud to be seen together. We know there’s a line between a sweet show affection and blatant PDA, but Dr. Goulston reminds us that a display of tenderness in public is important. “It’s not showing off, but rather just saying that they belong with each other,” he tells us. And that’s quite nice.

By: Catriona Harvey-Jenner