Articles

Improve & Enhance your Relationship:

Sometimes it helps to get very pragmatic about this business of being a couple. Even if you are single, at some point you may find yourself in a relationship and find that some of the suggestions below can help your next relationship get off on the right foot.

1.    Make a point of saying hello and good-bye, good morning and good night. These are points of bonding and separation, and they count.

2.    Hold hands when you are out walking anywhere. At least part of the time you are together, hold hands. This reinforces that you are sharing an experience, part of the foundation of intimacy.

3.    Give little gifts. My husband is wild for anything chocolate and raspberry, So if I see something with this flavor combination, I buy it. It’s a little way of letting him know that I am thinking about him when he isn’t around.

4.    Important rule: Everything you say should help build the relationship, not tear it down. If you just follow this one rule, you should see your relationship get better over time. What this means: Think before opening your mouth. Be constructive with feedback. In fact, consider whether your opinion is really going to be helpful at all.

5.    No fighting in bed. Use the bedroom only for sleeping and making love. You  don’t want to associate your bed with something negative.

6.    Share labor. Figure out your strengths and weaknesses and divide labor accordingly. Don’t go by gender stereotypes. If the woman is better at remembering things, she can get the oil changed. If the man is better at details, he can do the dusting.

7.    No yelling. If you’re yelling, you are out of control. Try to recognize what happens in your body when you are getting upset and use those cues to calm down before things escalate.

8.    Speaking of escalation, don’t compete with each other in an argument. Instead of arguing, do problem-solving. You are working together to find an acceptable solution, not to persuade your partner to do things your way.

9.    Schedule time together. If it means grabbing coffee in the morning together on an especially busy weekend, do it. Don’t let more than a few  days go by without spending some time talking and connecting.

10.  Have sex. Couples that have regular sex are happier than couples that don’t. It’s what separates marriage from friendship.

On average, couples have sex between one and three times a week to twice a month. Now forget the averages and figure out what works for you as a couple.

 

 

Connecting Parent and a teen child:   Do you really know ???

1. What your teen is putting most of his/her energy into right now?

2. What personal issues your teen is trying to resolve?

3. What daily hassles irritate you teen?

4. Who has the most daily influence on your teen’s thoughts and behaviors?

5. The names of your teen’s three closest friends?

6. Who your teen would confide in first if there were a serious problem?

7. What your teen considers to be his/her greatest strengths?

8. What your teen considers to be his/her greatest weakness?

9. Who your teen considers to be his/her biggest enemies?

10. Your teen’s favorite time of day?

11. Your teen’s favorite movies?

12. Your teen’s favorite childhood stories?

13. Your teen’s favorite hobby or pastime?

14. Your teen’s favorite colors?

15. Your teen’s favorite foods or meals?

16. Your teen’s heroes?

17. Your teen’s favorite song, band or singer?

18. Your teen’s favorite books?

19. Your teen’s favorite television shows?

20. Your teen’s attitude about his/her body?

Diabetes and Sexuality:

 Just as you’ve found a way to live with the changes in your life that come with living with Diabetes, you may want to think about the ways your sexuality may be affected by living with Diabetes (or being in a sexual relationship with someone who lives with Diabetes).

The traditional medical approach to sexuality and disability or chronic illness can be very gloomy when it comes to sexuality. Often the focus is on what won’t work (and what will hurt). Well meaning health care professionals will sometimes discourage people living with Diabetes from thinking about the sexual parts of their lives. This is wrong.

Sexuality isn’t a simple matter of mechanics and bodies, it’s a combination of the way our bodies work and the way we feel, the changes you experience are unique to you, and professionals shouldn’t be telling you how to feel or what your sexuality is going to be like post-diagnosis.

When you begin any sexual exploration you never know where it’s going to take you. What starts off as a real problem can end up with surprisingly pleasant results.

For example, some people living with Diabetes find they have to start talking about sex with partners more, and the result is better sex, and more of the kinds of sex they’ve always wanted.

You may find that   there are a variety of impacts on your sexual life as a result of living with Diabetes. Changes can occur in  your desire to have sex , how the sex you have feels , what kinds of sex you want to have, feelings of being attractive and desirable

These changes may be a result of Diabetes itself, medications you may be taking, or the often intense and unacknowledged social pressures and anxieties that come with acquiring and living with a disability.

Here are some common ways that sexuality and sexual functioning can be impacted by Diabetes, along with suggestions for dealing with these obstacles. Remember that these are only general comments, and your experience may be wildly different.

1.     Increased Likelihood of Urinary Tract Infections

Particularly when blood glucose is consistently high, these infections can cause discomfort for women during intercourse and for men during urination and ejaculation. An important preventative measure is to maintain your blood glucose as best as possible.

2.     Erectile Dysfunction & Prostate Problems

Some studies suggest that at least 50% of men with diabetes have erectile dysfunction. Erectile dysfunction also occurs at a younger age for men with Diabetes. Prostate problems related to Diabetes can also impact erections, as well as have an impact on pain experienced during sexual arousal and orgasm for men. At the same time, not all men living with Diabetes will experience erectile dysfunction.

While erectile dysfunction problems can often be resolved, when they do occur (as they naturally do for all men, regardless of disability) it can also be an opportunity to reconsider the absolute focus on penile-vaginal intercourse as the “ultimate” form of sex. There are many other ways of being sexual, and getting complete sexual satisfaction, without an erection. And having a body that is changing, and not always working the way it did in the past, can be an opportunity to explore this.

3.     Vaginal Lubrication

Nerve damage as a result of diabetes can cause reduced vaginal lubrication. This is a situation that is easy to fix with good quality water based or silicone based lubricant.

4.    Reduced Bladder Control

For many people loss, or even reduction of control over bladder functioning can have a huge impact on feelings of sexiness, and can create anxiety about loss of bladder control during sex. Making sure you empty your bladder before sex, and avoid drinking a lot prior to sex is one way to deal with these concerns.

5.     General Decrease in Sexual Desire

This can be caused by any number of things, including:

  • Medications to reduce blood pressure, for depression, and for pain,  reduced testosterone levels
  • Fatigue as a result of persistently high blood glucose
  • Pain experienced during sex, making sex less appealing
  • Changes in your body including weight gain. How you deal with this change will depend so much on the causes and you. If medication is a cause you may want to speak to your physician about changing the type of medication you are on. Fatigue may be making it simply more difficult to schedule sex, so planning a day around your energy level so you have time for sex when you’re energy is up can work well.

 

 

Let’s celebrate Life.

Do you think aging has made you less attractive? Do you have difficulty seeing yourself or your partner as sexy and desirable?

Then it’s time to challenge your own as well as society’s perception that only young bodies and unlined faces are sexy and beautiful.

Age is just a number…Being Sexy is just a state of mind and Sex has no expiry date.

We need to accept – no, celebrate! – our wrinkles and rejoice in all the pleasure these bodies can still give us.

Let’s join together and practice rejecting society’s youth-oriented view of beauty, keeping ourselves fit so that we feel happy with our bodies, and keeping a loud, buoyant sense of humor!

I love my 71-year-old husband Shridhar’s face and body. I look into his vibrant blue eyes and I see the young man as well as the older man. The older man is no less sexy than the younger man must have been (I didn’t know him then). In fact, he’s more sexy, because he has learned how to live joyfully and love completely in ways that a young man can’t know until he has lived a full life.

I look in the mirror, where new wrinkles seem to appear. I try to walk my own talk, accepting my own face as I accept Shridhar’s, telling myself these wrinkles are badges of living, laughing, and loving. I tell myself, this is the youngest I’ll ever be from now on!

Shridhar still loves his wife Malti 69 year old and excites her by telling her when she combs her hair or when she comes in the bed room or when they return home after a walk, functions etc that she looks very tasty, turning little sidewards towards her softly tells her that she is beautifully different than any other woman on this planet. They still go for walk twice a day with holding each other and swaying hands and always smiling.

I asked my 101-year-old great aunt what it felt like to be more than a hundred. She said, “I’m the same person I always was.”
So should we. Rather than trying to deny our aging — which is futile anyway — let’s celebrate it.

 

Passion Killers

 

1) One partner does all the sexual initiation.
2) All sexual initiation is done nonverbally.
3) Boredom from routine – familiarity – inability to explore.
4) Can only be sexual in the dark with quiet.
5) Distraction or interruption during sex: TV, telephone, kids, etc.
6) Acquiescence rather than responsiveness – (inability to say NO). Being sexual when one would rather not.
7) A wide discrepancy between partners in desired frequency within a sexually exclusive relationship.
8)Not being able to share fantasy material.
9) No sexual conversation outside bed.
10) Anger about nonsexual aspects of the relationship.
11) Wham, bam, thank you ma’am.
12) Fear of being sexually out of control (”sexual abandon”).
13) Constant focus on orgasm as a goal.
14) Leaving sex for when one is too tired.
15) Not masturbating or not being able to speak about masturbation with partner.
16) Jealousy.
17) Conflicts in sexual or nonsexual value system.
18) Strictly defined gender roles in the relationship.
19) Assumed sexual exclusivity.
20) Belief that sex should be spontaneous.
21) Having many children without sufficient spacing.
22) Intercourse in only one position.
23) Sex as serious business.
24) Aversion to or embarrassment by props or sexual dress.
25) Faking orgasm.
26) Sexual secrets.
27) Religious orthodoxy – sex as a duty.
28) Lack of physical or emotional safety.
29) Physical illness.
30) Sex traded for non-sexual goals.
31) Expectation of a woman having orgasm during intercourse.
32) Not liking oral sex and having a partner who does.
33) An undesired change in the personal hygiene or grooming of one’s partner.
34) Weight gain.
35) Power imbalance.
36) Sexual dysfunction – anorgasmia, painful intercourse, rapid ejaculation, erectile problems.

Talking about Sex:

Wouldn’t it be nice if your partner just knew what you needed all the time? If at precisely the right moment he would just be there with the perfect compliment or item or whatever without you even asking? Dream on. Even the most communicative of couples are unable to completely anticipate each other’s needs.

The desire to have one’s needs met, however, is deeply rooted in your past. The concept of mind reading may well be a vestige of childhood. At that time in your life, you expected your parents to anticipate your every need, perhaps before you were even cognizant of what you wanted. As adults, however, we must be responsible for our own needs. That’s part of what it means to be a grownup. But in that same vein, if our needs involve our partner, it is up to us to speak up. Unfortunately, we all-too-often don’t.

The problem is that within silence lives a major precipitating factor for relationship failure. While it may be commonplace in this day-and-age to gripe about communication problems, many couples influenced by the images of romantic love promulgated in our media-driven culture believe that they should be inextricably linked to their partner through an innate understanding and sensitivity. In effect, they say, You ought to know how I feel or what I mean if you really love me. Realistically, however, this is often not the case.

There is no doubt that talking about sex is tough. If it were a piece of cake every couple would have an amazing sex life. But on that same note, expecting your partner to just figure it out or automatically know what works for you is also totally unreasonable.

Still, when it comes to sex, most people tend to live by the credo “No news is good news.” In other words, if neither partner says anything, they tend to assume that their partner is okay with what is going on. Unfortunately, that is frequently miles from the truth. Sex is a highly intimate and vulnerable exchange. As a result many people are terrified to speak up about their needs for fear of hurting their partner’s feelings or possibly even worse, turning their partner off.

Women tend to have a particularly difficult time asking for what they need in bed because some women still believe they are supposed to focus on their partner’s pleasure rather than their own, and oftentimes their goals during sex are less about climax and more about closeness. So she just hopes and prays that by being sexually conjoined to her partner she will somehow get the intimacy she craves and that he will somehow figure out what would make her feel good without direction. Thing is, the phrase “different strokes for different folks” applies here; no woman or man comes with a road map. So what might have worked with one partner in the past won’t necessarily be pleasurable for a new partner. Unless there is a dialogue about the situation at some point, neither partner will know what is truly working and what is not.

Reading physical cues may give some couples information (i.e., if they seem to be sexually turned on then they assume things are good). One thing to keep in mind, however, is that there are a lot of good actors out there as well. People will frequently fake sexual pleasure in order to enhance their partner’s self-esteem or perhaps enjoyment of the experience. But this kind of behavior is usually to the detriment of one partner’s pleasure as well (the “acting” partner).

The basic point is, you’re an adult. Adults are responsible for their own needs. Likely, your partner is not going to be able to read your mind, so at some point, you’re going to have to get over it and talk to each other straight up about your sex life. By not doing so, you risk remaining unfulfilled. If you don’t create a road map, you’re likely to get lost. Always Remember Sex is to be used and not abused. My Guru who is a Brand Guru Jagdeep Kapoor in his Brand Management classes uses a mantra which is so true, in a lighter vein..

“Karo Sambandh verna Sab Bandh.”

Foreplay tips

Foreplay includes a range of activities such as undressing, kissing, petting, and oral sex; but you can add your own thoughts to the list. Sensitive foreplay is so important to good sex because it will help both partners enjoy sexual intercourse more, and it will especially help women reach orgasm more often. Most woman need prolonged stimulation in order to reach a complete arousal, and foreplay will provide them with the required encouragement.

There is no such thing as the definitive foreplay; it is not about pressing the right buttons in the right order. It is about understanding what makes your partner tick and supplying those things that make the experience exceptionally pleasurable. There are many ways to give your partner extreme pleasure, and it all begins in the brain. Compliment their appearance or other attributes, especially if they have a low confidence level; show them that you care about them and what they enjoy.

Creating the right environment for sexual intercourse is all about paying attention to the details, which is especially important at mature stages in the relationship. For example, make sure the room is warm, the lighting subdued, and the appropriate music is playing. Once the mood is right, take the time to undress each other slowly, because the act of removing your partner’s clothes can be an important part of successful foreplay. Many find that undressing increases the eroticism – stimulating and intensifying the feeling.

During foreplay, go slow; begin by kissing and caressing. A kiss is usually the first physical expression of love and desire, but it is also often forgotten during sexual intercourse. During intercourse, kiss the different parts of your partner’s body, and don’t be restricted solely to the mouth. Most women complain that their partners don’t kiss long enough and rush the movement directly to the genital area. Don’t be shy to experiment on every part of the body (for example, many women enjoy particular kissing and nibbling attention to the neck and shoulders), and remember to prolong the foreplay with more kissing and caressing.

Another reason foreplay is important is for the learning experience. Foreplay is the perfect time to spend time understanding what your partner likes because without that, you will never understand what they really need to be fully stimulated. Don’t be shy; ask for feedback and also give your own. Both partners gain from good communication during foreplay and lovemaking. If words fail you, either SHOW or GUIDE your partner in the direction you want, and encourage them to do the same.

Remember that only by communication can we understand what is required to improve, and that practice makes things perfect!

The PLISSIT Model of Sex Therapy

 

 
In 1974, the American psychologists developed a simple model illustrating the fact that most people with sexual problems do not need an intensive course of therapy. He used the acronym PLISSIT for four basic forms of sex therapy: Permission, Limited Information, Specific Suggestions, and Intensive Therapy.  Each successive level is designed to provide increasingly deeper levels of treatment.  (The expanded version includes reflection at each level.)

Permission. Since many sexual problems are caused by anxiety, guilt feelings, or inhibitions, it follows that therapists, using their professional authority, can simply “give permission” to do what the client is already doing, thereby alleviating much unnecessary suffering. (Example: Guilt feelings and anxiety because of masturbation.)  The idea is for the therapist to reassure clients that their behaviors, thoughts, feelings, fantasies are normal, as long as the behaviors, of course, do not negatively impact the other person.

Limited Information. At this level the therapist may give clients correct anatomical and physiological information sufficient to improve or restore their sexual functioning.  It is not uncommon that clients have erroneous notions about the functioning of their own body and thus fall victim to unrealistic expectations.  In such cases little more than factual information and education are necessary.  Or, still at this level of intervention, the therapist may provide information regarding the client’s concerns about the sexual response cycle, size of one’s penis, sexuality and aging, clitoral response, orgasmic responses, effects medication might have on sexual activity, etc.

Specific Suggestions. The third stage, specific suggestions, is comprised of homework assignments such as the use of the stop/start technique for rapid ejaculation, masturbation exercises for women who haven’t yet experienced an orgasm, communication exercises for couples to get them starting to talk about sex, or techniques to reduce anxiety.  Specific Suggestions are practical hints or exercises tailored to the individual case.  The pleasuring exercises (“Sensate Focus”) developed by Masters and Johnson belong in this category.

Intensive Therapy. The final phase, intensive therapy, is required when the first three phases do not resolve the sexual problems, and this is where the services of a specialist in sex therapy might be helpful.  This is where the sex therapist addresses complex underlying causes, in addition to the simpler behavioral approaches previously described.  however, these cases are relatively rare.

Thus, the whole PLISSIT model represents “a graduated system of therapeutic sieves,” in which the easy cases are caught and eliminated first, while the more difficult cases sink to the bottom in steadily diminishing numbers. This, pragmatic model is a useful reminder for all therapists and their clients that not every sexual problem requires the whole therapeutic arsenal.

  1. No comments yet.
  1. No trackbacks yet.