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Aug
24
Divorce Strategist Nancy Kay
Is your Marriage on Life Support? 9 Warning Signs
Family & Relationships, Love & Sex
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For better or for worse… but when it does get worse, you may find yourself trying to decide if your marriage can still be revived or if it’s time to disconnect the monitor that’s barely keeping the marriage alive- even knowing that it will cause pain, disruption and many changes to come.

How can you tell if things have reached a point where your marriage is flashing that  red now and now in critical condition?

Here are some questions to ask to assess the current state of health of your marriage:

  1. Is your partner self-absorbed and unwilling to accept responsibility for their part in your marital issues?
  2. Does your spouse often communicate with you while using a tone of contempt and disrespect?
  3. Is it more important to be ‘right’ in an argument rather than to compromise or negotiate with each other?
  4. Are you noticing that you spouse has altered their patterns of time away from you and/or become more secretive with their cell phone, computer or money?
  5. When your spouse becomes angry, do you feel intimidated when they block your path, make threats, limit your access to resources, act out physically or drive recklessly?
  6. Does your spouse use alcohol or drugs irresponsibly or have other addictions that are significantly impacting your relationship?
  7. Is your partner more concerned with ‘the image they present’ rather than dealing with the underlying dynamics of your marital and family relationships?
  8. Have you lost trust and faith in your spouse?
  9. Do you find that most of your conversations are about practical day-to-day small talk and you feel disengaged from your partner on an emotional level?

If you are discovering that your marriage is on life support, it is very helpful to get some guidance and support

Nancy Kay photo

Divorce Strategist Nancy Kay

from someone who has experience in these areas so that you can feel less stuck and more empowered to take back control of your life.

Whether you decide to stay in the marriage or make plans to separate or divorce, you’ll feel less confused and more confident about the decisions you are making right now and what direction you’ll take to move forward.

 

 

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Jul
12
Lisa Copeland, The Dating Coach Who Makes Finding Love After 50 Fun and Easy!
Dear Lisa- My Older Boyfriend Doesn’t Trust Me
Love & Sex
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Dear LisaDear Lisa,

I’ve had men write me online but I just don’t know how to answer them.  Any suggestions?  Margie

 

Margie,

I like to look at online dating as if it’s a virtual cocktail party.  How would you act at a party?  You’d be fun, flirty and cute.

Your flow of emails are the same as cocktail party conversation – light and fun.

To do this, take a few moments to collect your thoughts before answering a man’s letter.

Keep your answers short and be sure to ask a fun question he can respond to.

You’ll find if questions aren’t asked, email flow can end.

If he starts asking serious questions in his emails, then suggest taking your conversation to the phone.

See this as the fun/flirty phase of opening up a conversation to see whether you want to talk or meet a new man.

 

Dear Lisa,

I’ve dated off and on since my divorce.  About three years ago, I met a man named Steve.  After a couple of dates with a little bit of kissing and some minor touchy feely playing around, we realized we were not meant to be in a romantic relationship with each other.

Yet we enjoyed our friendship and began meeting for lunch once or twice a month.  When it comes to paying, we always take turns or we split the bill.  We both enjoy this friendship but have no desire for any more than that.

About six months ago, I began dating an older man.  I am 57 and he’s 68.  He thinks this friendship is wrong and I’m being disrespectful of him by doing this.  He believes men and women heading into a serious relationship should not be friends with a member of the opposite sex they once dated even if it was brief.

I’m having a hard time with this since my friend and I have known each other longer then this man and I have.  I don’t understand why this is such a big deal.  I’m not romantically interested in Steve at all. I’m not sure what to do about this.  I’d love to get your insights. Livia

 

Livia,

I’ve known many men and women including myself who have stayed friends with people they briefly dated.  Often a romantic relationship won’t work but a plutonic one does quite well.

It sounds like your boyfriend might have some trust issues.  There’s always the possibility a woman in his past cheated on him and he’s projecting his distrust upon you out of fear you’ll do the same thing.

Also, your current boyfriend is a member of the Silent Generation, the men and women born prior to Baby Boomers.

What might help you is to understand this man comes from a generation where honor, respect and doing the right thing are part of his core.

This man would likely lay down his life for you.  Think of men who, in Medieval times, would have dueled for your heart, believing may the best man win.

To your boyfriend, Steve is being disrespectful of his territory, which he sees you as a part of.

Boomers view life differently than many from the generation before them.  They grew up with free love and give peace a chance.

This is the reason for the conflict you have in your relationship.

So where do you go?  If your relationship with this man is something you want to continue, you will probably have to give up your relationship with Steve.

I’m not saying its right, but it’s likely the only way you’ll have peace with your boyfriend. It sounds like there’s no room for compromise here.

Or you can find a man who may have female friends of his own and will be fine with your friendship with Steve.

Your heart is a great guidance system.  Check in and see what feels best to you to get your answer.

If you still aren’t sure, set up a Complimentary Discovery Session with me.

Tell me what you think below in the comments!

Much love and joy to you, Lisa

 

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Jul
8
Marcia R Reich
In search of the perfect panties
Fashion & Beauty
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I learned about French women and their underwear many years ago when I traveled to Paris for ten days with only two pairs of panties. Mind you I had enough pairs of shoes to walk 10,000 miles but only two pairs of panties. For the life of me I can’t understand how this could have happened. You can leave your toothbrush at home but never, never leave home without enough underwear!

I ventured out to a couple of department stores thinking (naively) that finding underwear in Paris had to be ridiculously easy, if not incredibly fun — NOT REALLY. Hours later, I trudged back to my hotel room having stopped along the way to buy some detergent. It seemed that I might be relegated to washing and praying. I’d be praying that the pair I washed at night would dry fast enough to wear the following day. It doesn’t always happen. Walking around Paris in damp underwear is really not fun.

French women seem to be very serious about their underwear. While my mother always impressed upon me the necessity of clean underwear, French women go above and beyond. A salesperson in one particular store literally gasped when I revealed myself to be wearing a colored bra and panties that didn’t come close to matching. Unthinkable!  As I remember it, I was escorted out in record time. “No, Madame, we have nothing for you.” Needless to say, humiliation followed me around for the rest of that day.

Not one to give in to a challenge, I pushed onward, facing sales person after salesperson, relinquishing all my armor, grace and pride in the pursuit of a few pairs of basic, clean underwear. I have a working knowledge of the French language. Enough to get me directions, order food, use the ATM and pay for a thing or two. I do not have nearly the vocabulary to explain or ask where I can find a more substantial pair of panties. All I found were thongs— silk, lace, V’s, C’s & G’s. I went from store to store without finding a single pair of panties that covered at least an inch of my buttocks.

And then an “older” woman (my age now) rescued me. Seeing my distress and hearing me speak what was at best a ghastly version of the French language, she offered me a pencil and a piece of paper. Somehow I understood that she was asking me to draw what I was looking for — oh how I wish I had that drawing now.

Somehow, bad illustration and all she was able to discern my desperation for panties with just a tiny bit more coverage. I was on the third day of my hunt by then and I was willing to compromise with anything greater than a string. She went into a back room and returned with a handful of lovely lace panties—with backs. As it turned out she spoke more English than she let on at the beginning. Do French women not own or wear bikinis; high cut briefs or even those cute boy shorts?  “Bien sur, Bien sur, mais ne s’affiche pas.” In English: Yes, of course, we sell them AND wear them, we just don’t display them. But matching, I learned is serious business.

While this was at times a rather uncomfortable experience, it also led to some interesting cultural revelations — French women like pretty, sexy, sensuous lingerie but they seem to want it and buy it for the way it makes them feel about themselves. One woman told me that it made her smile to know she had pretty underthings on even though no one can see them. As for their bodies, a French woman I got to know a little better shared, French women aren’t all thin, we don’t have perfect bodies— we’re just a little kinder to ourselves.

So how did we as American women get here? How is it that we came to judge ourselves so harshly and continue to struggle to live up to media images that have little in common with real, live, healthy women? I returned  home with some lovely lace panties and a passion for helping women learn to love themselves a whole lot more.

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Jun
22
ShirleyF
For those who have left a loveless marriage, have you subsequently found the affection, satisfaction and perhaps even romance that you thought you were missing?
Love & Sex
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I left my 29 year marriage 4 years ago after years of loneliness/no affection. Tried hard to save it, but his mind was elsewhere and he just didnt want to try. My ‘dating’ adventures since then could be the subject of a novel (that only I would read) but the one thing I have discovered is passion…didnt know I had it in me. And this, all post menopause. While I would ideally like to make that passionate relationship last, it takes two to tango, and so Who knows what the future holds. I’d like to hear other womens’ views on the best compromise — to be forever single, with lovers on the side, to get hitched again, or to just abandon male/female adventures. The one thing I find difficult is keeping platonic male friends because they always want more.

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May
29
SusanOrlins
Casey at the Window: My Dog’s Quality of Life
Family & Relationships
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Worrywart dog

How do I measure my dog’s quality of life against life itself? A dog whisperer on TV whispered a guideline for when to euthanize your dog: when bad days outnumber good days.

Some say the dog lets you know when he’s ready to park in Paradise. Last year, at 13 years old, Casey began to have a ratio of 0 good days to all bad days. The pain in his neck was so severe that even if I walked three feet away from him, he cried.

Confession of a worrywart: Though Casey has arthritis, I caused his neck suffering by yanking on his leash, which was linked to his collar. (I now yank on his leash attached to a harness.)

Adding to my guilt, the vet pointed out that because dogs are pack animals, they do not admit to pain as readily as we do; Casey’s anguish was more acute than I could imagine.

It was unbearable to watch my Angel Cake endure so much. I took him for xrays and exams. One vet said he must remain as still as possible; she advised carrying him outside to relieve himself, so he wouldn’t have to descend the single step from our stoop. And she advised keeping him in a crate indefinitely.

Honestly, what would be the point of that?worrywart dog

At risk to my own neck . . . and back, I did carry all 32 pounds of him up 16 steps to my bedroom each night. I was prepared to move a bed downstairs so I could continue to sleep with him, as I had done for myself while recovering from hip replacement surgery.

Thankfully, a friend suggested acupuncture.

The holistic vet came to us and sat on the floor sticking pins all over Casey’s back, while I fed him treats to keep him from bolting. Before leaving, she gave me a bottle of Chinese herbs, to mix with his meals.

Within a day or two, my Caseminster Abbey was back to himself, barking at the mail carrier and flying up the stairs at night, apparently pain-free.

During the day, a child safety gate prevents him from mounting the steps; climbing stairs, they say, willworry wart dogexacerbate his arthritis. Yet his favorite activity is gazing out the window at the second-floor landing. When a neighbor and her labradoodles prance by, his thrill is palpable.

His joy is also my joy, but I worry I will be cutting his life short by allowing him to use steps more than at just bedtime.

After my hip replacement, a physician’s assistant told me that biking would shorten the lifespan of my hip prosthesis. At first I thought,Oh dear, I guess I’d better bike less.

But then I decided, no way—what would be the point of limiting something that gives me more pleasure than getting a foot massage while eating chocolate ice cream and has its own health benefits?

As for my little Pot Pie, I am inclined to compromise with part-time access to the stairs. This raises questions.

Do I let him roam freely to the second floor when I am home, which would bring me the pleasure of witnessing his pleasure? Or, do I let him roam freely only when I am away, to compensate for my absence? How much are our pets here for our pleasure?

It’s an easy decision for Casey to have window access when I’m away, since I like having him by my side when I’m home. The only time I pause by that window is when he breaks loose and I find him there; I then sit beside him and wrap my arms all around his torso for one of the best hugs ever.

Speaking of hugs, ever since I read that eight hugs a day stimulate production of oxytocin in a quantity that results in greater happiness, Casey and I have been hugging more often.

And, by the way, how much inconvenience are we willing to put up with for our pets? If your beagle has more life in him but requires a lot more effort and expense to keep him alive, what do you do?

I often wondered what the cut-off dollar amount would have been if Casey had needed an operation when he was younger. Now that he is nearly 15, I consider it moot and wouldn’t put him through a surgery. Or, am I just saying I wouldn’t put him through it to protect myself against vet bills and the inconvenience of his recovery?

Lately, Case has been as energetic as a teenager, and recently I heard a vet refer to dogs living to age 25! So I hope to have a lot more years to worry about this. Despite the questions I raise, he feels as essential to my life as air.

(If I hadn’t already ruminated for so long, I would question why we allow mercy killing of pets but not humans.)

I’d love to hear from you about caring for aging pets (and/or humans)!

 

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