I have seen too many bright, talented and kind people decimated by relationships with narcissistic partners. The trauma inflicted by the abusive is subtle but it can hang on for quite a while and really disempower the target. Even when the abusive relationship is mercifully short, the effects can linger.
Last week was an unusual week for me. I coached two couples (from different parts of the U.S.) on how to transform their marriages from “traditional” to a “Parenting Marriage.” Normally, these calls for help are more spread out. Two in one week is a new record for me. Both of these couples told me they want to stay together in the legal sense, but not in the romantic sense; they want to continue to provide a stable, co-parenting partnership for their children, and they want to renegotiate the terms of their relationship.
I was just a young girl barely old enough to have a job when I met and encountered one of the most beautiful women over 40 I would ever meet in my life. I met her during my early years of interning for the city government. I mean when she walked in the room, men knew she was there. She always had a smile on her face or a chuckle as she laughed. She was the star of the show and everyone around her knew it. But she was never arrogant, just confident and it always showed in her demeanor. Only years later would I learn that this wasn’t always charact
No matter what you believe (or don’t), many people find it helpful to connect with a higher power, a Source if you will. It helps to know that you are more than an infinitely tiny speck, living on a tiny clod of dirt and water, hurtling through space around a rather ordinary star on the fringes of a generic galaxy. It helps to feel known and loved, especially when you are single. So, whatever you call it, call on it. Often.
One of the biggest mistakes we can make when we are single is to settle with the wrong person because they are close to what we want or because we feel have too. That is the worst thing you can do, it never works out. There is always that niggling doubt at the back of your head saying is he “really what I want”? I think everybody at some point navigates most of these scenarios, I know I did!
For Ladies: Cyber sex can be safe and fun when used responsibly, LOL. Seriously though, there are times in a woman's life when sex for sex's sake can be just what the doctor ordered. Whether you are recovering from a divorce or other breakup or you are a soul satisfied single, a good old fashioned orgasm can still be yours. On websites such as literotica.com, you can find willing partners and test the waters.
Is there anything a marriage therapist can really do when one of the partners is one foot out the door? Maybe both people are not sure staying married is the best idea. Or, what if one spouse simply refuses to attend counseling? An estimated 30 percent of couples presenting for marriage therapy actually have a “mixed-agenda.” This means they both have differing desires as to save the marriage or not. One (or both) may be seriously considering divorce or, in other words, “ambivalent” about saving the marriage.
I read an article recently about a couple that shared their marriage story. In the story the author (the husband) told the reader how his wife came to him one day and asked to talk with him. She talked about their two lovely girls, their fun social life and then she threw him a “verbal bomb” he didn’t expect. She said her life at home was hopelessly unhappy because he wasn’t the friend she’d hoped and needed him to be. She went on to say if he didn’t get his act together their marriage would be over.
When it comes to love, it seem like we spend a lot of time sucking in our bellies and tightening our belts. We spend a lot of energy pretending to want less than we want, pretending our appetite for intimacy, connection, sex and love is not as great as it actually is. In truth we are ravenous. We are just trained to be very careful about how much we consume. We find ourselves in a "race to the bottom," competing to be the one who can survive on the least love... all because we are afraid to show just how desperately we want one another.
My moment came in 2009 standing in the front hall of our home as early Canadian winter began to close in around us. I didn’t realize in that moment that so many things in my life were waiting to break, needing to change and ready to grow. That my heart was going to be broken open or that I had the strength to put it back together after the dust settled.