8. Sex. Sex is a complicated topic. It is central to an intimate relationship but it can feel almost impossible to talk about. Sex becomes an issue in a relationship when it is either too intense or there is no intensity at all. For some, it can be overwhelming to look at their current sex life and think that it might remain the same for the rest of their lives. Without open lines of communication and the skills to devise a plan, you begin to doubt whether you can stay committed forever.
Again, it is communication and knowledge that are the keys to alleviating this stress. You need to know what "married sex" is and how it differs from "new couple" sex. Don't walk away until you can learn and discover more about your own and your partner's sensuality. A couples counselor or sex therapist is a good place to begin. I also recommend the "Better Sex Video Series - Sexplorations" by the Sinclair Institute to almost every couple I work with as a teaching tool about how to talk about sex.
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9. Illness. It can be terrifying when you find out that someone you love dearly has an illness. You may be flooded with so many difficult questions: How long will we have? How bad will it get? Will I have to be the caretaker and if so what happens to my needs, dreams and desires? Will my children inherit this illness?
If you or your fiancé has an illness and you are questioning if the relationship can work, you need more information. A joint visit to the doctors office can give you both a chance to ask questions and gather important information. Then a visit with a couples counselor can help you both fully express your fears and feelings and help you to listen empathically to the the other's feelings.
We all want to know how our stories will end and we want to know now. We want to know before the wedding if our marriage will last 50+ years. It is very scary to make any decision about the rest of our life when we don't feel we have all the answers. And when we feel jittery or anxious about a big decision we usually ask family members for reassurance. We ask if these feeling are "normal" and if they had these before they married. They will usually tell us this is all normal, to go ahead with the wedding and reassure us that everything will be OK. This rarely gets rid of wedding jitters.
The very best thing that you can do to alleviate the jitters is to get more information and open the lines of communication with your fiancé. Beginning this conversation may not remove all the jitters but solutions and paths forward will emerge. Also, consider using a couples counselor or individual psychotherapist to help. The best outcome would be that you gain:
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- The vision to know your needs.
- The ability to ask for your needs bluntly.
- The skills to express your feelings openly and be heard without judgement.
- The perspective to be able to see the truth of your relationship and not just the fantasy of its potential alone.
With these you will be able to choose your partner with confidence, plan your wedding with excitement and joy and have the marriage you want and need. If you have any questions please contact me at www.DCCouplesCounseling.com or through my YourTango Experts page.