“What disturbs people’s minds is not events, but their judgments on events.”
In China, parents once bound the feet of their daughters in pursuit of beauty. In parts of Africa, both men and women elongate their earlobes and decorate their skin with minerals to look attractive, and this trend may be found in the United States now. At one time in this society, we found plump, rotund people to be the epitome of beauty.
Old movies show us that the Tarzans and Supermen of past decades would hardly pass muster in today’s gyms. Today we define beauty as a thin, youthful, and muscular look. Today we go under the knife and on extreme diets to achieve a socially acceptable appearance – not to mention tattoos and body piercing – all practices that are similar to the early Chinese custom of binding feet.
Although changes are taking place, strong social standards have dictated, especially through the media, how we should look – and if our own bodies deviate from these expectations, which is the case for almost all of us, we can feel inferior and ashamed. We hide. We cover up. We don’t like an important part of our selves. We feel depressed. We feel anxious in front of other people. We feel powerless – and we are apologetic when we show the world who we are.
When we commit ourselves to a relationship with another person, we rightly expect to experience a sense of fulfillment that we didn’t have before. Humans, as social beings, seem to have a universal desire to find a partner. Sexual attraction often serves as the motivator for making initial contact with the other person, and this is usually replaced over time with a deeper sense of commitment and intimacy.
It comes as a terrible disappointment to some people when the sexual phase of their relationship fails to lead in time to something deeper. The task, then, is to understand the forces which block the development of a deeper sense of intimacy – and to do something about it. Fortunately, with some work – and it’s often hard work – couples can learn to move into the stage of deeper sharing and more fulfillment in their relationships.
It’s not uncommon to fall out of love with someone.
Even though you have been close for a long time, you may feel that now is the time to end the relationship.
The question then becomes, what’s the best way to go about it?
Even if you feel that you’re no longer in love, you probably still care for your partner to a degree, and you want to break up on as best of terms as possible.
Here are some tips on how you can end your love relationship with grace, dignity, and compassion.
Have you felt like you and your partner are more like roommates than intimate companions? Watching Netflix in your sweatpants while your partner plays a game on their cell phone sounds like a hot date, right?
There is not a lot about that scenario radiating romance. What it does portray is a mutual level of extreme comfort you and your partner have embraced.
Of course, nothing is wrong with feeling comfortable around your partner. Actually, you want to be comfortable with each other. But you also want to nurture the intimate connection you have and acting like roommates simply doesn’t do that.
If you feel stuck in the ‘roommate rut’, try these suggestions:
Researchers have studied the effects of birth order for nearly a century now, but learned only within the past few decades about the influence of birth order on our behavior and the nature of relationships with our partners. We now know that the strategies we learn in childhood for dealing with our parents and siblings has a lasting influence on our behavior, often in ways we barely recognize.
Porn has become a household subject within the past few decades. While most people aren’t sitting around the dinner table discussing it in detail, we are more aware of its existence now than ever. In fact, many people have invited porn into their lives “just for fun.”
Maybe you thought viewing a little action to “spice” up your own libido wouldn’t hurt anything. Now, you’re hooked. You can’t get enough.
When you first started watching porn you may not have intended for this to happen. As life plays out, though, it’s easy to see that porn is anything but harmless to a romantic relationship.
Is it fair that you have to work on your relationship alone? Many couple counselors would probably say no, it isn’t, but they would probably encourage you to consider the alternatives. For example, you can choose to stay stuck in a relationship stalemate, but then each of you lose the potential benefits that can come from the work that you do – for example, a healthier and more supportive commitment in your relationship. Or you can let the relationship end.
But working alone may not be a realistic option if the situation is unbearable or abusive or if you’re completely mismatched. However, if there is a chance that your relationship can work, it might be well worth it for you to keep trying until you have tried using all of your ideas. Otherwise, you may regret ending your relationship too soon, and this would be unfair to you.