Archive: December, 2013

December 27, 2013

Our Relationship Challenges Help Us Grow


You know that scene in the movie where the new love-struck couple first finishes each other’s sentence and she realizes that he truly gets here and he realizes she is perfect and they are excited to live together happily ever after with lots of laughter and bliss and super hot sex??? They start doing everything together and he picks up her hobbies and she loves his hobbies and pretty soon there is no me or mine, just us and ours. He adores her quirky habits and she swoons at his goofy ways and they adore how different and similar they are.

This is where the movie usually ends. Perhaps we get a sneak peak at their future children and their children’s children and more laughter, smiles and happily ever after.

What happens when her quirky habits drive him bonkers? What about his goofy ways embarrassing her and turning her off?
Have you ever noticed that sometimes the very things that draw you to someone eventually annoy you? Remember when his lack of schedule felt fun and carefree rather than careless? Remember when her love of structure seemed responsible rather than suffocating? What changed? Him, Her, You, Both?

And what do you do now? Is it time to call it quits? Do you grin and bare it? Accept your lot in life or try to change your partner?

When things become challenging in a relationship most people either walk away or grudgingly move forward. What if there is another option? Certainly there are times to end a relationship. Certainly there are some challenges that are just too much. And sometimes we have skewed expectations of what relationships are “supposed to look like.” And sometimes we forget (or never learned) that challenges can be an opportunity for growth.

Numerous times in my office I have heard, “If I only lived alone, I could finally learn to _____.” (pay my bills, clean up after myself, be on time, take care of the kids, love myself, etc.) Or “Once I find a new partner I will finally be able to _______.” Or “If I was single I could ________.” And yes, sometimes that is the case and sometimes it isn’t. It’s similar to the “Next year I will finally _______.” (lose weight, go back to school, quit my job, clean my house, etc.) Here is where the opportunity for growth comes in. It may seem impossible to learn how to finally clean up after yourself when your wife does it all the time, but this is a great opportunity for you to learn. It may seem challenging to be financially responsible when your husband is so good at finances and will just do it for you, but you can both be financially responsible We love to just start fresh. Clean Slate. “If I’m on my own I HAVE to learn to clean the house.” “If I’m single, I HAVE to pay my bills on time.” Do you? Or will you be single with a messy house and late charges? You may be thinking, “But my partner won’t let me grow. He or She insists on being in charge or parenting me.” And perhaps that is the case. I also speak to a lot of partners who would love for their partner to shift and grow in the relationship. I’m not saying it’s easy. I’m not saying it won’t be challenging. But let’s be real – leaving a relationship is challenging. And if you leave so you can learn to do something on your own, it’s possible you will not learn to do that thing and then end up in another relationship with the exact same dynamic and the exact same challenges. We choose our partners for many reasons (compatibility, chemistry, connection, love, financial support, similar beliefs, etc). Sometimes we choose partners that remind us of our family or previous partners. Sometimes we choose partners that allow us to heal past wounds or show up in new ways or grow or shift or change. If you are used to chaos, it makes sense that on some level you might choose someone who is calming. It also makes sense that you might believe on some level that you will not be able to learn to be calm in this relationship (since that is your partner’s role). The truth is, you can learn to be calm even if your partner is used to being the calming one. You can learn to be organized even if your partner is the organized one. You can start being more responsible even if your partner is the responsible one.

You just need to decide how you want to address your relationship challenges. You just need to decide how and with whom you want to grow.

Filed under: Communication,Relationship — admin @ 8:05 am

December 18, 2013

Vaginas Are Like Snowflakes!

vagina roses

  • “But my other girlfriends always liked it when I touched them like that.”
  • “I don’t look like other people, down there.”
  • “I should be able to have an orgasm that way.”

Where did you learn about your anatomy? What did you learn? Where and what did you learn about other bodies?

Just like sex is not one-size-fits all…our bodies aren’t either.

Our sexual preferences are personal and our genitals and erogenous zones are unique.

If you are trying to touch your lover the way you’ve touched every other lover, it may not resonate. If you are trying to adapt your idea of beauty or your body to what you see elsewhere, you may feel “less than.”

Vaginas and vulvas and labia and clitorises come in different shapes and sizes and levels of sensitivity. That is fantastic. Part of self love is truly getting to know your body.  Part of a relationship is getting to know how to reach your partner. Part of sex is connecting with your lover.

What if you forgot what worked in the past and took the time to learn what works now. Is that scary? Starting with a blank canvas. Is it liberating?

It pains me to hear about women who are getting surgeries to change their genitals and then still feeling like they don’t look quite right. It pains me to hear of women who feel betrayed by their bodies because they don’t react the way their partner suggests they should.

What if the problem isn’t with your vagina…but with our lack of sex education or the way vaginas are portrayed in our culture.

And if you are frustrated with your partner’s vagina…what if the frustration really stems from your difficulty giving her pleasure? Perhaps instead of trying to do the same thing over and over again, you can take the time to try something new and find a way to reach your lover and plug into their arousal.

Vaginas (and vulvas and clitorises and labia) are like snowflakes. Beautifully unique.

You are not broken. You are unique and lovely and beautiful. Take the time to appreciate your body and get in touch with what works for you.

Filed under: Body-Image,Self-love,Sexual Being,Sexuality,Women — admin @ 1:04 pm

December 11, 2013

Unconditional Love

unconditional love

❝Dear Human: You’ve got it all wrong. You didn’t come here to master unconditional love. That is where you came from and where you’ll return. You came here to learn personal love. Universal love. Messy love. Sweaty love. Crazy love. Broken love. Whole love. Infused with divinity. Lived through the grace of stumbling. Demonstrated through the beauty of… messing up. Often. You didn’t come here to be perfect. You already are. You came here to be gorgeously human. Flawed and fabulous. And then to rise again into remembering. But unconditional love? Stop telling that story. Love, in truth, doesn’t need ANY other adjectives. It doesn’t require modifiers. It doesn’t require the condition of perfection. It only asks that you show up. And do your best. That you stay present and feel fully. That you shine and fly and laugh and cry and hurt and heal and fall and get back up and play and work and live and die as YOU. It’s enough. It’s Plenty.❞
Courtney A. Walsh

Filed under: Love — admin @ 10:40 am

December 4, 2013

Alone for the Holidays

sad holiday

  • Break-ups are hard.
  • Losing someone you love is hard.
  • Feeling alone is hard.

Add the holidays into the mix and things can feel unbearable.

What should you do if you are alone on a special holiday?

  • You can skip the holidays all together – If the thought of carrying on as usual this year feels too painful, perhaps taking a year off from the holiday season will serve you. Check in with yourself. Are you depressed? Are you afraid? Are you avoiding something? Or do you legitimately want to take this year off?
  • You can use special rituals or recreate special memories – If this is your first holiday after losing someone you love, it might feel comforting to honor that person. Make his favorite foods, embrace his favorite rituals, hang a stocking in his honor, share your memories and let your loved one live on through your intentions and love.
  • You can create new memories. Are there things you always wanted to do but you weren’t able to in the past? Maybe there is an event you wanted to enjoy or a certain decorations you used to wish you could hang or perhaps you wanted to travel on the holiday but couldn’t. What is stopping you now? Let yourself create the kind of holiday you are yearning for.
  • Surround yourself with love and support. Reach out. Call. Ask. Ask again. It’s easy to feel forgotten during this time of year. People are busy with their own lives and rituals and traditions. Don’t assume they are too busy for you. They may not know you need support. If you don’t have friends or loved ones near; find a group, volunteer, find a place where you can go and feel less alone.
  • Let yourself feel your feelings and then move on. Pretending you aren’t sad or hopeless or lonely isn’t going to make those feelings go away. Have a good cry. Look at pictures or ornaments and feel what comes up. And then dry your eyes and find some support or create new memories.
  • Give to yourself. Are you going to miss the presents you used to receive? Does seeing your empty stocking on the mantle tug at your heart strings? Fill it yourself. Is it the same? Of course not, but it’s better than being taunted or reminded of your alone-ness every time you walk in the room!

The holidays can be magical and they can be heartbreaking and sometimes they are both in one moment. So up the self-care. Surround yourself with love. Honor your wishes and your wants. Be your own best Santa Claus this year and take care of yourself!

Filed under: Grief,Holidays,Support — admin @ 12:52 pm