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When You’re No Longer Sexually Attracted to Your Partner or Spouse

Falling in love can be both exhilarating and intoxicating, it’s like free falling with no bottom in sight. New love, entering a committed relationship, or getting married to a person you perceive to be your perfect fit is one of the best feelings in the world. However, when intimacy diminishes, and we are no longer sexually attracted to our partner or spouse it can feel like a death.

Sex is essential for many reasons in any healthy, committed relationship. It is ultimately all about intimacy, the pleasure, and sexual expression. Understanding these benefits will help couples recognize that sex in their relationships will not only help themselves but help bond their relationship further and create a broader sense of intimacy in a loving relationship. Sex is important when it comes to any romantic relationship. Whether this is a long-term relationship or one that’s just starting, sex is an important thing to consider for your overall health.

Notably, there is much more to a healthy relationship than sex, developing and enhancing intimacy is a major factor in maintaining a healthy, long-term partnership, or marriage. Unfortunately, couples that have been in a relationship or married for a long period of time may experience challenges related to an inconsistent sex life, decreased/non-existent intimacy, or difficulty maintaining their couple bond. Although, changes in sexual frequency is a normal part of the evolution that occurs in a relationship, lack of sex and diminishing intimacy can lead to negative consequences for partners.

Partners that are sexually attracted to each other are more likely to have a regular and consistent sex life, are more committed to each other, have better communication, enhanced intimacy, and better relationship quality. However, when individuals are not sexually attracted to their partner or spouse intimacy is affected, communication diminishes, sex becomes a chore instead of bonding the couple, and frustration builds. Mounting frustration can interfere with a couples ability to stay connected, get to the root of their sexual issues, join to resolve their problems and  Partners that lack sexual connectedness and diminished intimacy are more likely to experience diminished relationship quality, have difficulty communicating with their partner, and are more likely to seek sexual connectedness outside of the relationship. Seeking sexual satisfaction and connectedness outside of one’s relationship often leads to additional relationship issues up to and including the end of a relationship or marriage. It is important that we understand why sex is important in a relationship, what sex brings to a relationship, how intimacy is strengthened by sexual connectedness, etc.  

Sex has several benefits in the context of a committed relationship or marriage, such as, it can improve the connection between you and your partner, decrease stress, and has been associated with a longer lifespan.

Benefits of a Healthy Sex life in the Context of a Committed Relationship or Marriage:

·       A healthy sexual enhances the bond between partners

·       Decreases stress and anxiety

·       Promotes better communication between partners

·       Partners with a healthier sex life have better outcomes for a longer life

·       When That Connection Builds Over Time, it Continually Strengthens the Relationship

·       Provides opportunities for better sleep

·       Improves overall happiness

·       Boosts self-esteem

Reasons Some People Are No Longer Sexually Attracted to Their Partner or Spouse Include:

·       Decrease in attention to hygiene or poor hygiene

·       Unrealistic expectations of what their sex life should include

·       Sex has become routine, it no longer contains excitement

·       Infidelity in the relationship

·       You are no longer “friends”

·       You have difficulty communicating

·       The trust is broken in the relationship

·       Significant changes in partner weight or other physical differences

If you find yourself no longer sexually attracted to your partner or spouse try reminding yourself why you fell in love with your partner or spouse, include more couple activities into your relationship (log walks together, snuggling up on the sofa, cooking a meal together, working out, communicating more, or sexual experimentation might help). Decreased or lack of sexual attractiveness does not have to be a deal breaker, you can fall in love again, enhance your relationship bond, and become sexually attracted to your partner again. However, you must be willing to commit both time and effort into strengthening your sexual relationship, rebuilding intimacy, and improving your communication.  

16 Signs You’re Married to a Narcissist

As a psychologist and marriage & family therapist, I have worked with many people diagnosed and undiagnosed that exhibited significant narcissistic characteristics. Narcissism falls under the category of personality disorder. The clinical name for those with pronounced symptoms of grandiosity is called Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD). Personality disorders are conditions in which people have traits that cause them to feel and behave in socially distressing ways, limiting their ability to function in relationships and other areas of their life.

People with NPD can present as arrogant, conceited, self-entitled, grandiose, boastful, etc. Those with narcissistic characteristics enjoy and indulge in being the center of attention, often dominating conversations, or steering the conversations back onto the topics perceived to be “more important” to the narcissist. Narcissists thrive in environments and relationships that appear to focus predominantly on them, fulfilling only their needs and interests.

A Narcissist Believes He/She is Truly Extraordinary

Narcissistic people have an inflated view of self, often erroneously believing no one can do things as well as they do, are as smart and clever as they are, or as engaging, etc. As mentioned previously, chronic narcissism is a personality disorder. Up to 30% of people who require mental health services have at least one personality disorder (PD) – characterized by abnormal and maladaptive inner experience and behavior. Personality disorders, also known as Axis II disorders, include obsessive-compulsive PD, avoidant PD, paranoid PD, narcissistic PD, and borderline PD, which can be very difficult and complicated to both identify and treat because its symptoms often overlap with other disorders. Personality disorders represent some of the most challenging and mysterious problems in the field of mental health.

Marriages and relationships can be a delicate balancing act for many couples as they try to juggle relationships, careers, and families. However, when you add a personality disorder and other mental health issues, relationship and marital issues can become further exacerbated.

16 Key Signs You May Be Married to or in a Relationship with a Narcissist

  1. Maintains feelings of entitlement
  2. Violates the persona boundaries of others
  3. Inflated view of self
  4. Conversation hoarder
  5. Charming or otherwise engaging
  6. Uses manipulation to get what they want even at the expense of others
  7. Often makes promises they do not keep
  8. Lacks true empathy
  9. Feigns concern or affection
  10. Overly concerned with both personal appearance and impressing others
  11. Embellishes stories or achievements
  12. Always giving advice even when they are not thoroughly versed on the topic of discussion
  13. Impatient
  14. Holds grudges
  15. It is never their fault, it is always someone else’s fault
  16. Manipulative or self-serving behaviors

Hard to Feel Loved or Safe in a Relationship with a Narcissist

Being in a relationship with someone who does not acknowledge or validate your needs can be very confusing. Narcissistic people often consistently ignore, dismiss, and explain away your feelings, wants, and needs, while complaining that you never do what he or she wants. It can also be very hard to feel safe, cared for, or even heard and considered in such a relationship. For partners married to or involved in a relationship with a narcissistic person, the pressure to live up to his or her “standards” and demands can be intense. Partners may feel under constant pressure to say and do just the right thing in just the right way to please her or him or just to keep the peace.

The pressure for perfection or to do the “right” things in the eye of one’s narcissistic partner can lead to feelings of depression, confusion, low self-esteem, anxiety, fear of making a mistake, low energy, and/or frustration, etc. Partners who base their self-esteem on the opinions of someone else are placing themselves in a very vulnerable proposition, but when you are married to a narcissist, it is devastating. A narcissist feels most secure when his/her partner looks really good but feels really needy and dependent. The narcissistic partner strives to keep their partner under wraps via constant criticism, impossible demands, withholding affection and love, insults, etc.

*This article originally appeared on divorcemagazine.com  https://www.divorcemag.com/blog/signs-you-re-married-to-a-narcissist/

17 Things Couples Tend to Over Share on Social Media

 

New relationships can be both fun and exciting, prompting a lot of couples to want to share their excitement with the world, specifically, via social media. Social media affords many individuals and couples the opportunity to share their happiness, sometimes unhappiness with not only family and close friends but everyone in the stratosphere. Most of us have been there, unable to contain our happiness about our new love and budding relationship, however, some things should not be shared with everyone. Advancements in technology and social media has really changed the way most people socialize, engage the world, and view relationships. Years ago, when you started a new relationship you would share the news with your best friend, opting to reveal your status to your family until it became “serious”. However, with the changes in the usage, users, and options to share, we have not only increased our usage, but what we reveal and how we reveal it on social media. Social media is not limited to couples, but single adults and children. We share both insignificant and significant, from what we ate on a given day to sickness, additions to family, and breakups.

It may come as a surprise, but nearly one-third of all adults and teenagers post their relationship statuses to social media outlets, such as Facebook. Unfortunately, with the sharing of personal, intimate details of our lives also comes with scrutiny and judgement. Seeing someone’s life and relationship updates can be a welcome distraction from our own less interesting or challenging lives. Would it shock you to know that more than half of social media users lie about or exaggerate their statuses online? Often, users will report their relationships or partners in a fantastical way with everything “being great”, having the “perfect partner” or the “perfect relationship”, when their partner or the relationship is far from perfect. Keep in mind no one and no relationship is perfect, every relationship has its ups and downs, every person has both good and bad traits. Consider this, most people watching our lives play out online we barely know, do not remember, or have never met. However, that does not seem to stop our social media or “Facebook” friends from weighing in on the changes and or updates we report. Every time an update or status is reported we have potentially invited another person into our lives and relationships.

In addition to the limitless opportunities to share, some users utilize social media to keep tabs on or spy on current and former partners.  Keeping tabs on current as well as former partners can lead to breakdown of a current relationship or inability to move on from a previous relationship. Using social media to spy can lead to insecurities, self-doubt, or unwarranted suspicions. Rather than providing updates on our lives and partners we are encouraged to live life, not write about it, engage in it both selflessly and feverishly.

Although, you may want to cast yourself and your relationship in the best light possible, you may also be setting your partner and yourself up for unrealistic expectations. Relationships and people are not without fault or imperfections; therefore, they should not be depicted that way online or anywhere else. Relationships that are exaggerated online can lead persons viewing your posts to question their own relationship quality. Those that play out negatively online can lead to onlookers taking sides, speculating about the future of your relationship, reveling your relationship challenges, pitying your relationship, etc. Once you put something online you cannot take it back, it is out there, and it is out there to stay.

 

17 Things Couples Tend to Over Share on Social Media

  • Their relationship status
  • Overly mushy exchanges
  • Relationship challenges/fights
  • A cheating partner
  • Intimate or sexual details
  • Sexy/scandalous pictures of a partner
  • Criticisms of a partner or former partner
  • Comparisons between themselves and an ex-partners new partner
  • Mean spirited jokes
  • Breakups
  • Pregnancy announcements
  • Challenges with conception
  • Flaunting of personal items or gifts
  • Multiple pictures
  • Jealousy comments
  • Friends or families dislike for a partner
  • Vacation photos with your partner

Every relationship goes through a period of ups and downs. The good, the bad, and the ugly. However, the things that strengthen a relationship and enhances the bond between partners is their ability to communicate directly with each other, rather than communicating through social media, or sharing personal details about their relationship online. The urge to share can seem overwhelming, especially, in a budding relationship. However, to preserve intimacy and keep your relationship private you need to resist the urge and keep the details of your relationship between your partner and yourself.

As you spend more time with your partner and keep private things private the trust in the relationship builds, you become closer as a couple. Notably, when you overshare on social media you open yourself and your relationship up for criticism and negative feedback that can affect your thoughts and actions in your relationship. When partners overly share details of their relationship, those lending their advice can say things or make recommendations that are less than positive. This advice can lead to self-doubt, pressure to escalate the relationship, and cause tension in the relationship.

Female Orgasmic Disorder: 4 Types

Female Orgasmic Disorder refers to significant or marked difficulty experiencing orgasm and/or reduced intensity of orgasmic sensations among women. Women that suffer from this disorder often experience difficulty or inability to reach orgasm during sexual stimulation. Unfortunately, many romantic relationships will suffer as a result of this disorder as it typically leads to negative feelings of frustration, anxiety, embarrassment, resentment, and shame. Interestingly, a lot of women that suffer from this disorder do not recognize or even minimize many of the challenges associated with the delay or absence of orgasm during sexual stimulation. In order of a diagnosis of Female orgasmic disorder to be made disturbance must cause marked distress or interpersonal difficulty for it to be diagnosed.

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Childhood Sexual Abuse & Adult Survivors

In the United States alone millions of the reports made alleging a child is being sexually abused are substantiated. The prevalence and frequency of child sexual abuse (CSA) is difficult to determine because it is often underreported. However, experts agree that the incidence is far greater than what is and has been reported to authorities. To add to the mounting uncertainty surrounding the prevalence of CSA, it is also not uniformly defined, so statistics may vary. Survivors of childhood sexual abuse often experience challenges establishing, maintaining, and trusting others. Opening up to others, exposing vulnerabilities can be terrifying for most survivors. Trying to form an intimate relationship may lead to frightening missteps and confusion. Not surprisingly, survivors often believe no one can be completely trusted and a loving attachment is not possible. Unfortunately, following a sexual assault many feel they are somehow damaged or flawed in some way, unworthy of truly being loved. Thoughts like these can wreak havoc in relationships throughout life.

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Erectile Dysfunction: 8 Risks

Erectile dysfunction is characterized as the inability to get and sustain an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse. However, experiencing challenges related to achieving and maintaining an erection from time to time is not necessarily a cause for panic or concern. Erectile challenges can be related to excessive alcohol or drug consumption, medication side effect, an underlying medical condition, blood vessels, loss of interest in partner, stress, emotional conflict, etc. ErecNeedless to say, increased stress, physical, as well as mental health can cause or worsen erectile dysfunction.

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Habits of Happy (and Healthy) Couples: 29 Tips

Establishing and maintaining a healthy romantic relationship is certainly not an easy task as most relationships start off with giddy optimism and plans for the future. However, as with most “honeymoon” periods and life itself, there will be moments of both happiness and sadness. All healthy relationships will include times of both triumphs and failures, happiness and sadness, as well as give and take. Although, there is not one discriminate type of healthy relationship most will agree in order for a relationship to be healthy it must include communication, respect, empathy, and compassion.

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Bipolar Disorder: Age of Onset and Associated Risk factors

Bipolar disorder, formerly called manic depression, is a mental health condition that causes extreme mood swings that include cycling of moods associated with extreme emotional highs (mania or hypomania) and lows (depression). Persons that struggle with mood instability may experience intense feelings of sadness, helplessness, or hopeless and lose interest or pleasure in most activities. However, when mood shifts to mania or hypomania (less extreme than mania), the sufferer may feel euphoric, full of energy or unusually irritable or creative. Mood instability can affect the way in which the sufferer engages and relates to others, process information, behavior, judgment, eating/sleeping patterns, energy level, etc.

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Importance of Collaborative Approaches to Care Coordination for Persons with Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is characterized as a severe mental health disorder in which people interpret reality abnormally. Schizophrenia may result in some combination of hallucinations, delusions, and extremely disordered thinking and behavior that impairs daily functioning, and can be disabling. Schizophrenia is a cyclical disease characterized by multiple psychotic relapses. Unfortunately, schizophrenia is a chronic condition, requiring lifelong treatment.

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Handling Criticism: 10 Steps

Accepting criticism can be a very difficult process for many people. Criticism can trigger insecurities, force us to doubt ourselves and our abilities, lead to negative feelings, and cause us to become fixed on any perceived personal inadequacies/shortcomings. For persons struggling with mental health concerns, criticism can be especially damaging. Criticism can trigger psychiatric symptoms for some individuals who interpret feedback in unhealthy ways. Criticism, even that which is well meaning can be viewed as personal attacks, demeaning, or even threatening. How you handle criticism can have an impact on your personal perception of yourself, how you view the world, your self-esteem, how you engage with others, behave in a relationship, view opportunities, etc.

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