Tag Archive | passion

When Can We Have Sex Again? – Rediscovering Sex After Pregnancy

Rediscovering Sex after PregnancyA common question I’m asked after a couple has just had a child is: “When can we have sex again?” The short answer is: “When it feels right”. Sadly it is most often he who is ready before she is so when it doesn’t happen as he expects then this can lead to feelings of frustration and even alienation from the new mum and her baby.

Low or absent sexual desire is a very common experience after pregnancy; a reduction in sexual interest and activity, compared with pre-pregnancy levels, is really the norm during the first few months.

Studies have found that more than half of women resume intercourse at six weeks after delivery; By 24 weeks more than 80% of women were ready to be sexual again. The majority of the women even reported being able to come to orgasm by 12 weeks. And most studies indicate a gradual return to pre-pregnancy levels of sexual desire, enjoyment, and coital frequency within a year.

The return to making love is strongly influenced by the mother’s experience before pregnancy, her physiology, and her emotional and psychological make-up as well as by the culture she has been raised in.

The physical impact of giving birth is generally complete somewhere between four and six weeks. Research has shown that this differs little between those who have given birth vaginally as opposed to those who have had a cesarean birth. However the mother may still be weary for some time especially if the baby is not feeding well or is restless and taking time to settle down to a good sleep routine.

And then there is the emotional impact which may take longer to recover from. Here also every woman makes progress in her own time and in her own way.

Emotional disturbance very often takes the form of post natal depression, sometimes affectionately called, “post natal blues”. This can be as mild as feeling restless or as serious as contemplating harming the child or the mother herself.

Good old-fashioned Mother Nature is probably the greatest villain here.

While ensuring that the mother’s milk supply stays high, breastfeeding can negatively affect sexual desire whilst also guarding against a future pregnancy too soon. The reason is that estrogen levels decline during breastfeeding, which, sadly, also means that sexual interest also declines.

Vaginal lubrication also decreases which can lead to pain with intercourse which is also a way of ensuring that you don’t get into mischief while your new baby still needs so much of your attention.
The baby also makes sure that the mother’s attention is totally on her or him to ensure that this child has the best chance of surviving without having to compete with anyone else. This includes the father who, so far as this child is concerned, has fulfilled his part of the bargain.

So what does all this mean for the couple?

Firstly it means that as well as dealing with a new baby and all that entails it also means that you now have to patiently focus your energies on this child until you are not required 24/7 anymore.

In the meanwhile you can start to take any moment this child allows you to do some nice things for each other that are not necessarily going to lead to intercourse. Bathe together, massage each other, have a sleep in, if your baby will let you, and rest when your baby is asleep rather than trying to use this time to catch up on chores. Also take time out, as it is offered by friends and family, to go out and share a meal together or go to the movies.

Other forms of sexual expression, such as touching, kissing, and mutual pleasuring techniques, besides just being nice to do, can also help to re-establish physical closeness with your partner. So take your time getting to know each other again.

Whatever else you do go slowly!!

Then when the time is right, begin to reintroduce more sexually based activities into your schedule. The use of water-based vaginal lubricants can help reduce discomfort during intercourse. Vaginal moisturizer also can relieve vaginal dryness and pain.

And don’t be in too much of a hurry to get to intercourse. Masturbate each other or with each other until you are both sufficiently aroused to take it to the next step.

And don’t forget to use some form of contraception. Breastfeeding is not a guarantee against falling pregnant. And I should know as that is how I conceived my fourth child seven months after delivering my third and whilst still breast-feeding and feeling absolutely exhausted chasing after two other pre-schoolers.

Finally, take heart. Enjoyment of sexual intercourse will return, even if it is gradual, after childbirth. Give it time and enjoy the little bundle of joy you have created from your love for each other.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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What Happened To The Magic In Your Relationship?

Click on the flyer to see it in full size.
If you would like to attend the seminar please ring 02 99978518 or email admin@northernbeachescounselling.com.au with the words: “Yes I would like to attend the seminar”.

 

What Happened To The Magic In Your Relationship?

 

Some excerpts from my workshops.

Managing Long Distance Relationships

Long Distance Relationship

What is a long distance relationship?

I’m often asked about how to best manage long distance relationships.

Firstly let me try to define what a long distance relationship is. In this article/blog I’m going to define it as any relationship wherein the couple are not living together.

So by this definition it could be any relationship where one person resides elsewhere other than in the same house as the other person in the relationship. These separate residences could be across town or even across the world.

It could be as a consequence of one party having work commitments that means they need to live elsewhere, such as in the armed services or just by being a shift worker. This could even be as a consequence of one of the parties having been imprisoned. Or it could be that the situation they are in doesn’t allow the couple to live together; one party may already be in a relationship, or the relationship is not accepted culturally because of church or possible criticism from the rest of the community such as might be the case with same-sex couples.

There is also the possibility that the marriage has been arranged and due to cultural practices the couple are not able to meet until they have married.

And of course there are relationships that exist only across the internet – cyber relationships. These relationships can be just as intense as any relationship conducted face-to-face and even have the capacity to become sexual in their own way.

So how do couples manage these relationships?

Well firstly there is no doubt that these relationships can be more difficult to manage as each of the couple go about living their own lives. Having to make time to be with each other, however that happens, can be a difficult and challenging task.

There are also the challenges associated with sharing these relationships with other people in the life of the couple such as family, friends and work colleagues.

I’m also drawn here to think of situations where one party is in a totally foreign environment such as a prison or a war zone. The reality here is that the person who is living in a more “normal” environment really is not able to know exactly what the experience of the other’s life actually feels like for them and can only rely on their communication to even get any glimpse at all.

And yet with all of these things against them, couples still find a way to have and to maintain these long distance relationships. And the answer as to how they do it is not as difficult as it might seem.

The success of these relationships comes from an absolute and unparalleled commitment to each other and a total trust in the commitment of the other as well.

And just as with any relationship that makes the distance, if you’ll pardon the pun, it still requires lots and lots of ongoing conversations about how it’s going for you as well as an ongoing interest and curiosity in the day by day happenings in each others lives.

I would love to hear back from any of you in these kinds of relationships to speak about how it is for you and how you keep the love alive.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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Is Your Relationship in Trouble?

Don’t make any rash decisions until you have booked yourself in to this seminar.

“Lidy has helped thousands of relationships. Maybe she can help yours as well.”

In just 90 mins you will learn the 3 simple steps you need to take to get your partner to understand how serious things have become. The seminar will give you strategies that you can immediately put into practice to:

  1. Understand the problems couples are dealing with
  2. Determine the extent of your Circle of Control and Influence
  3. Communicate a message that you can be sure will get heard
Recharge Your Relationship

Walk out of this seminar with a plan to recharge your relationship.

  • VENUE: Club Redfern, 159 Redfern Street, Redfern
  • DATE: Tuesday 1 September 2015
  • TIME: 7.00 pm – 9.00 pm
  • COST: $10.00 for you and your partner or friend
  • CONDITIONS: Bookings essential

If you would like to attend please ring 02 99978518 or email lidyseysener@optusnet.com.au with the words:  “Yes I would like to attend the seminar”

Numbers are limited.

One lucky person will also win a FREE copy of my soon to be bestseller and for anyone who purchases a copy you will receive a beautiful gift as well:

Book Cover “Love, Lies & the Games Couples Play” valued at $27.95

Your Biggest Relationship Questions Answered

Your Biggest Relationship Questions Answered: a special 1 hour Q&A Webinar with

Your Biggest Relationship Questions Answered with Lidy Seysener and Frank Fava Your Biggest Relationship Questions Answered with Lidy Seysener and Frank Fava

Lidy Seysener

Frank Fava

Hi

A Colleague of mine Frank Fava and I are going to be presenting a webinar together next week so this is an invitation to join us and hear the two of us answer all your relationship questions, or as many as we can fit into an hour.

The topic for the event is “The Biggest Questions You Have About Relationships”.

For those who don’t know what a Webinar (Web-based Seminar) is it is an event that happens online where you will hear, in this one at least, Frank and I answering questions on what it means to be in a relationship in 2015. It is also an event where you can post (ie write down) questions as we go for us to answer.

This is the first time we’ve done this kind of event so I’m going to be learning as well.

The place to register your interest in this webinar is:

http://relationshipsrevealed.com.au/qa/

There you will find this introduction:

Introducing Lidy Seysener of Northern Beaches Counselling.
I have the privilege of having Lidy as a guest speaker and expert on a special 1 hour Q&A Webinar.
Change yourself and you change your relationship.
We’re going to be answering your biggest questions on being your best self in relationships and getting “Relationship Prepared”.
If you can’t join us LIVE: Register anyway, and I will send you the Recording of the session the following day.
See you there!
Frank Fava
Relationships Revealed

So just click on the link and RSVP directly there and I’ll look forward to answering your biggest questions about relationships then.

If you have any questions about this webinar feel free to reply and I’ll try to answer them.

Regards

Lidy

The Love Drug

Lucy & Dic-1

We all know when we are “in love” that our common sense seems to fail us as all we think about is the subject of our love and the delight there will be next time we meet. Even just thinking about them can result in that flurry in our stomachs as if they were with us in real life.

Why does this happen?

Well it can all be blamed on a little hormone that is produced in the pituitary gland called oxytocin. Sometimes oxytocin is referred to as the “love hormone” because it is when we are “in love” that oxytocin is most rapidly produced. It is also the hormone present in the body that marks the commencement of labour in a pregnant mother as well as being the active hormone that triggers the commencement of the flow of milk in the breastfeeding mum.

It is such a powerful hormone that for many mothers who are breastfeeding the experience can be akin to an orgasm and for some actually produces a real orgasm.

But back to the topic: It is when we are contemplating making love, or are actually making love, and are about to orgasm that we experience the full force of the delivery of oxytocin into our systems. And because it creates such a wonderful feeling in our bodies, as well as in our minds, the desire for oxytocin can become addictive.

So here’s how so often the story goes. You meet someone; you feel an attraction and want to spend time with that person. As you become more and more aroused oxytocin is released into your body and your want to be sexual with that person increases until it finds release some way.

Then as time goes by, and you are now in a full-time relationship, the attraction begins to wane somewhat as once a conquest has been made it no longer holds quite the same desirability. This is simply because it is no longer new and exciting as it was in the beginning.

This is especially so when you have known each other for some time and your availability to each other is no longer constrained. You are now able to spend more and more time together which also takes away the emergency of being sexual whenever you are given an opportunity.

So for those with an oxytocin addiction it may be that this relationship can no longer hold your interest and rather than going on to discover what else this relationship has for you the temptation is to let this go and find another person to fall in love with. Sometimes you can even convince yourself that this relationship wasn’t right for you anyway as you continue to seek your one and only “soul mate”.

And now even more than in past decades this seems to be happening. And not just in western countries and cultures but it many Asian and Middle Eastern Countries as well.

Maybe it is that we are all seeking a quick thrill as we want more and more “buzz” from our lives and once we’ve achieved that we want to move on to the next new and exciting thing there is to experience.

So what is there to learn from this?

Maybe it is as simple as this. That when the oxytocin production settles down and you find yourself facing “forever” then it’s time to look a little deeper for what might sustain the relationship for the long haul. Simply put that is real love not a selfishly sought after high for the moment but something that is based on a deep-seated care and commitment of one to another.

This is certainly not to say that there is now no room for romance and great sex. What this does mean is that you need to focus on creating the opportunities for great sex while ensuring you add lots of romance to your relationship.

Don’t be lazy and don’t be content with just making do as you get busy with life. Keep the fun alive, flirt with each other; make time for play and to explore your sexuality to ensure that the oxytocin keeps flowing.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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What Is Marriage?

What Is Marriage

I loved receiving this question as it’s something that we may expect that we all understand but in truth maybe we actually don’t.

So I started my research into answering this question by scrambling to the Macquarie Dictionary which defines marriage as “the legal union of a man and a woman for life including a legal or religious ceremony.”

This definition really doesn’t give us very much at all as marriage today in so many cultures, legally and through the various churches, is open to being dissolved on the wish of one or other of the parties. In most countries these divorces are even permitted without even having to prove that one party is in some way more at fault than the other.

So I thought that I should proceed in this article to discuss my thoughts on what marriage is and would welcome you to add your thoughts on the topic as well.

While marriage may relate to a legal process for me marriage is more about the commitment two people make to be there for each other come what may. I would also expand on the dictionary definition to include not just the communion of a man to a woman but also of either a man or a woman to another man or woman.  In my view they are as much a marriage as any marriage could be.

The sad thing here is that too many people enter into a marriage without really knowing what they are getting themselves into or without going through any preparation to ensure that their marriage will go the distance.

When I work with couples contemplating marriage the first thing I get them to consider and discuss with each other is this very question: what is marriage to each of them? How do they define it and are they ok with how their partner defines it or does it need some tweaking to make it something that both of the couple can live with.

As most of you might know I am in a relationship and have been for more than 20 years. My partner and I are not married nevertheless I describe him as my husband and wear his ring. He also describes me as his wife. It actually took us some time to acknowledge each other in this way as we were assessing our future together especially as I had four young children already as part of the package.

One of the first things we discussed in terms of our marriage was about whether we would live together and where that would be. We then had many conversations about how we would manage my children and whether we would have any more children. We then had to decide on the division of responsibilities both in terms of household chores and financial contributions. Finally we had some conversations about ownership of property and what would happen in the event that either of us predeceased the other.

And while this was not an issue for us as we are both of the same religious beliefs, for many couples there is also the question of what their particular religious beliefs are and how they might impact on their relationship and/or to any children of the relationship.

So while some of these issues are still conversations in progress for my partner and myself, the underlying promise is that we will be there exclusively for each other for the rest of our lives. In this we committed to never walk out on the other and to always raise it whenever we had an issue that affected us both and/or our future together.

This is how I define my marriage for me. It is a safe place to collapse into at the end of each busy day where I can feel safe and not be judged negatively no matter what I do or think. It is a place where I feel loved unconditionally and love in the same way.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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Why Women Cheat?

Recently I was surprised to hear news of increasing number of websites promoting affairs. So it maybe a bit of a surprise to hear that men are not the only ones who cheat on their partners.  It is becoming more and more common for women to be guilty of cheating.

And while years ago a woman cheating on her spouse was unheard of more recently the number of women who enter into affairs and cheat on their spouse is growing exponentially.

However while women may be cheating as often as men, the reasons why women cheat are very different to the reasons why men cheat.

Men Cheat for Physical Reasons and Women for Emotional Reasons

Research is showing us that the principle difference between men and women cheating are that men often cheat for physical reasons while women often have emotional reasons for cheating on their partner.

The reasons why women cheat include loneliness, revenge, and boredom or as an attempt to raise their self-esteem.

A partner who becomes excessively involved with his work or some pastime may no longer make time to spend with his partner. This often results in the woman feeling as if she is all alone. So if a woman is not receiving the attention she feels she deserves in a relationship, she may be tempted to seek that attention elsewhere and become involved in an affair.

Loneliness has amazingly become one of the primary reasons that women seek out affairs and cheat on their partner. Although it sounds contradictory that they should feel lonely while being in a relationship, it is because that relationship has simply become emotionally unfulfilling.

Revenge has also become a growing factor in why women cheat. The modern woman is no longer willing to sit back and accept the fact that their partner may cheat on them. If a woman confirms or even just holds a suspicion that her partner is cheating on her, she may be driven to engage in an affair of her own as an act of revenge.

An Eye for an Eye

They may be extremely hurt by their partner’s actions and seek a way to hurt them in the same way.

Boredom may also factor into why women cheat. Their current relationship may have fallen into a rut and lost the excitement that it possessed in the early stages of its existence. They may feel that their relationship has become dull and predictable so rather than trying to bring excitement into their current relationship they may pursue affairs in the hopes of rediscovering the excitement they felt when they first became involved with their partner.

While an affair may bring about a temporary solution of making the woman feel excited about love again it may ultimately destroy both their current relationship as well as their cheating relationship.

An affair is exciting not only because it involves a relationship with a new person but also because it involves sneaking around and ultimately getting away with doing something wrong.

To many women this is very exciting and they are willing to risk losing their relationship over the affair.

Another reason why women cheat is a lack of self-esteem. Women may feel that they are not getting an adequate amount of attention from their partner and they may be tempted to cheat to confirm that they are still attractive and desirable.

Being found desirable by another compensates for the lack of appreciation they feel from their partner which helps to boost their self-esteem. While women with a healthy self-esteem are more likely to remain happy in a relationship, and do what needs to be done to find it, those who lack self-esteem may be more driven to cheat on their partners.

So if you are finding yourself lonely, bored or feeling like your self-esteem is failing you think twice before embarking on an affair. Maybe there is a better way out. This might be to seek some counselling and then to find a way to confront your partner about what it is you’re experiencing.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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Rediscovering Sex after Pregnancy

Rediscovering Sex after PregnancyA common question I’m asked after a couple has just had a child is: “When can we have sex again?” The short answer is: “When it feels right”. Sadly it is most often he who is ready before she is so when it doesn’t happen as he expects then this can lead to feelings of frustration and even alienation from the new mum and her baby.

Low or absent sexual desire is a very common experience after pregnancy; a reduction in sexual interest and activity, compared with pre-pregnancy levels, is really the norm during the first few months.

Studies have found that more than half of women resume intercourse at six weeks after delivery; By 24 weeks more than 80% of women were ready to be sexual again. The majority of the women even reported being able to come to orgasm by 12 weeks. And most studies indicate a gradual return to pre-pregnancy levels of sexual desire, enjoyment, and coital frequency within a year.

The return to making love is strongly influenced by the mother’s experience before pregnancy, her physiology, and her emotional and psychological make-up as well as by the culture she has been raised in.

The physical impact of giving birth is generally complete somewhere between four and six weeks. Research has shown that this differs little between those who have given birth vaginally as opposed to those who have had a cesarean birth. However the mother may still be weary for some time especially if the baby is not feeding well or is restless and taking time to settle down to a good sleep routine.

And then there is the emotional impact which may take longer to recover from. Here also every woman makes progress in her own time and in her own way.

Emotional disturbance very often takes the form of post natal depression, sometimes affectionately called, “post natal blues”. This can be as mild as feeling restless or as serious as contemplating harming the child or the mother herself.

Good old-fashioned Mother Nature is probably the greatest villain here.

While ensuring that the mother’s milk supply stays high, breastfeeding can negatively affect sexual desire whilst also guarding against a future pregnancy too soon. The reason is that estrogen levels decline during breastfeeding, which, sadly, also means that sexual interest also declines.

Vaginal lubrication also decreases which can lead to pain with intercourse which is also a way of ensuring that you don’t get into mischief while your new baby still needs so much of your attention.

The baby also makes sure that the mother’s attention is totally on her or him to ensure that this child has the best chance of surviving without having to compete with anyone else. This includes the father who, so far as this child is concerned, has fulfilled his part of the bargain.

So what does all this mean for the couple?

Firstly it means that as well as dealing with a new baby and all that entails it also means that you now have to patiently focus your energies on this child until you are not required 24/7 anymore.

In the meanwhile you can start to take any moment this child allows you to do some nice things for each other that are not necessarily going to lead to intercourse. Bathe together, massage each other, have a sleep in, if your baby will let you, and rest when your baby is asleep rather than trying to use this time to catch up on chores. Also take time out, as it is offered by friends and family, to go out and share a meal together or go to the movies.

Other forms of sexual expression, such as touching, kissing, and mutual pleasuring techniques, besides just being nice to do, can also help to re-establish physical closeness with your partner. So take your time getting to know each other again.

Whatever else you do go slowly!!

Then when the time is right begin to reintroduce more sexually based activities into your schedule. The use of water-based vaginal lubricants can help reduce discomfort during intercourse. Vaginal moisturizers also can relieve vaginal dryness and pain.

And don’t be in too much of a hurry to get to intercourse. Masturbate each other or with each other until you are both sufficiently aroused to take it to the next step.

And don’t forget to use some form of contraception. Breastfeeding is not a guarantee against falling pregnant. And I should know as that is how I conceived my fourth child seven months after delivering my third and whilst still breast feeding and feeling absolutely exhausted chasing after two other pre-schoolers.

Finally, take heart. Enjoyment of sexual intercourse will return, even if it is gradual, after childbirth. Give it time and enjoy the little bundle of joy you have created from your love for each other.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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Love versus Infatuation

Body Language

When we first meet someone we can sometimes confuse a very strong feeling of attraction towards them, one that we might think is love, for what is actually infatuation.

We might then notice our attraction towards that person decreasing and we realize that if we act on this feeling too quickly we may have made a mistake. So, how do we avoid such a mistake? The difference between love and infatuation is not so obvious, especially for those who develop this infatuation which, by the way, is the prelude to all loving relationships.

If you want to know if you are in love or if it’s just infatuation, then think about how long you have felt this feeling and what the reason was for this feeling. The person might have helped you with something and you felt strong gratitude towards them. You were impressed by them, and thought of the feeling of gratitude as an attraction or even to be love.

Sometimes the very fact of someone paying us some particular attention can be grounds to convince ourselves that we are loved and thereby happy to return that love.

I even quite often hear people say that they feel they have found their ‘soul mate’. And they honestly believe this to be so even if they may have only known this person for a short time.

A Trick of Nature?

Of course when we first meet someone we’re all on our best behavior. It is very easy to fool ourselves into believing that this is who the person really is.

In truth the only way we can really assess whether what we feel is love, or just infatuation, is to allow time to be the judge. Get to know this person as well as you can to assess your compatibility with them. And maybe the only sure test is to watch them when they’re under extreme stress as this will naturally bring out the best, or worst, in each of us.

So before, telling anyone that you love them and want to be in a relationship with them, be patient, and wait for some time to pass. Wait and see if the feeling that you think is love, decreases or if it stays somewhat the same over time or even grows.

Take off the rose-colored glasses and notice their flaws because you must love this part of your partner as well. Ask yourself: Would you still be able to love them knowing all their weaknesses and shortcomings?

Then if you get into something serious with them, and/or into marriage, then it would be a well thought through decision, not one based on impulse, and would truly become the best decision of your life.

The Lesson

So take some time before making that decision as it will be so important for your life, and the life of your potential partner and children.

And if after all this, your feelings towards this person remain the same, then it will be important to check that the feelings are reciprocated. You should see if they love you or not, and if they do then there is no reason not to be in a relationship with them.

Love Is Blind!

Love is a strange feeling; sometimes it makes us do things seemingly so insane that we might not otherwise have done them. But, if we all had our full faculties present, maybe none of us would ever even attempt to go there for fear of what might happen.

Yet, love is the most beautiful of all the emotions known to man and it makes life more beautiful and lovely; and well and truly worth the risk.

But, before making the decision to spend the rest of your life with a person you need to know whether what you feel towards them is truly love or just infatuation.

So until next time – Relate with Love

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