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Happy Couples

10 Habits of Happy Couples

10 Habits of Happy Couples

 

In successful relationships, you can expect to find 10 habits of happy couples which lead to long-term commitments that will enrich your life. After all, having your partner by your side surpasses your relationship. They are your best friend, your go-to person when you’re feeling down, your partner in all the adventures, someone who already has dozens of beautiful memories with you, and most importantly, the person you see with yourself in the future.

Yet, we all know that finding such a person is not easy at all, not to mention that maintaining this type of relationship is even more complex. So, what do the happy couples which are still incredibly in love with each other do to keep the passion strong? How do they nurture their relationship? Read more below about the 10 habits of happy couples and start applying them from today. 

1. Practice Zero Violence and Aggression

We all know that physical violence and aggression are not acceptable, so what happens with other forms which are not that apparent? Violent verbal communication can also cause a lot of damage to your relationship, and it’s crucial to avoid it as much as possible. Don’t attack your partner just because you assume something. Always go with an honest and open conversation, and start with questions instead of accusations. 

When we’re feeling neglected in our relationship, we tend to make the other person feel as bad as we feel, yet it will never make you feel better. If you feel sad, frustrated or afraid, discuss it honestly with your partner by only focusing on your feelings instead of trying to put the blame on someone. 

2. Be Compassionate

It’s very challenging to love profoundly if you don’t possess compassion for that person. Most discussions in a relationship start because we want our partner to behave differently. We think we know better and that if they do what we suggest, our relationship will instantly improve. However, it doesn’t work that way. 

Practice being more compassionate. Think about how your partner feels and how he usually reacts in similar experiences. Comparing him to yourself will cause more stress, because, you’re two different people. So, the next time you feel like you want to change something regarding your partner, stop and think about it from their perspective. Offer support and love and you will definitely receive more of it in return. 

3. Be the Dream Team

If you’re in a relationship, this also means you two need to work as a team. And not just any team, this should be the best relationship you have in your life. Invest the time it takes to be the best partners you can be to each other. 

When making decisions, make sure you make them together. More importantly, ask for your partner’s opinion on various topics as it will strengthen your connection and help you understand each other better. 

4. Make the Most of Bedtime

Although this habit might sound obvious to you, sleeping together improves intimacy in couples. Use the time when you’re both in bed to reconnect after a long day, talk about the events that occurred, hug, kiss, laugh and make love. Have fun exploring other parts of your lives you maybe haven’t explored before.

Let the bed be your own world. Don’t treat it as just the place where you sleep. Whether it’s in the morning or in the evening, you should appreciate these rare moments when the outside world still hasn’t kicked in and you can be focused one on another.

5. Be Intimate

Sleeping together is just one of many ways you two can be intimate. Being intimate is what differentiates good relationships from the ones that end. Happy couples understand they need to work on their relationship to keep it interesting. Whether it’s through deep conversations, dancing or cooking together, hugging each other, making love or seducing each other, intimacy is crucial in a relationship.

Most people will think only of sex when talking about intimacy when in reality, it is so much more than just sex. Intimacy is about that feeling of safety that you can be yourself in front of that person, because you know they have already earned your trust. That way, you can laugh, cry or be afraid in front of them, and you’ll know you’re in your safe space.

6. Go on Regular Dates

When was the last time you went on a date with your partner? Dress up and go to your favorite restaurant. And, don’t just do it to share photos on social media. Really enjoy these moments, be present and talk about the delicious food and the atmosphere in the restaurant.

Avoid talking about responsibilities, issues or stress. You’ve decided to do something fun to step outside your everyday routine, so try to enjoy it as much as you can. Talk about fun memories you share, your first date, the first impressions you had about each other or anything else that will turn this night into yet another precious memory. 

7. Consider Reading Books Together

We usually talk about reading together when suggesting solutions for aspects of the relationship which are not quite working as expected. Proactively reading can provide couples with numerous benefits. 

Use reading as an opportunity to learn more about your partner and yourself. Talk about the potential areas of conflict and clear them out before they convert into endless discussions. Having a professional next to you when you’re tackling these issues can help you solve them quicker and more efficiently.  

8. Create Your Own Rituals

What makes you and your partner happy? Maybe it’s drinking coffee together on the terrace before going off to work, or cooking dinner together to relax after a long, stressful day. Whichever activity you two enjoy, turn them into your own rituals. Dedicate time to it as it will make you feel better and connected. 

It can be literally anything, from showering together, watching a TV program together, going to a favorite sports game to walking your dog or home improvement projects. 

9. Prioritize Your Partner

When living together, you might forget that your partner has to be at the top of your priority list. Happy couples will always prioritize one another knowing that the other person will appreciate this and do the same.

For instance, if you were planning on going to the gym and your partner feels really bad after a business meeting that didn’t go as planned, why not go to the gym tomorrow? You can plan something together and cheer up your partner instead of letting them feel down and alone. After all, wouldn’t you want to be cheered up after having a bad day?

10. Plan Your Future Together

Happy couples are the ones that honestly believe they will stay together in the future. As much as you cannot predict the future, knowing that somebody wants to share with you more than just present moments is wonderful. Your plans don’t have to be something serious as buying a house, you can simply daydream about how you wish your future to look.

Also, this will help you two as a couple to move in the direction of your desired future. Keep in mind that quality relationships require work. A happy couple is a couple that is aware of this and invests their time and effort in it!

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

How To Break Up With Someone Over Text

How To Break Up With Someone Over Text

How To Break Up With Someone Over Text

 

How to break up with someone over text and not hurt their feelings? Sorry to disappoint you: it’s almost impossible to break up with someone, whether it’s in person, over text or a phone call, and not to impact the way they feel. With that being said, there are several approaches you can choose to break up with someone in a respectful way, even if it’s over a text message. 

So, if you’re currently in a relationship that is making you unhappy, learn here how to kindly break up with that person and give yourself a chance for a fresh start.

 

When should you break up with someone over text?

As much as you might think that this is not the best method to put an end to a relationship, there are many situations where it’s one of the most efficient and safest ways. For those who have been in a toxic or maybe violent relationship and their partner simply lacks comprehension and empathy, it’s almost naive to expect you’ll be able to break up with them successfully in person.

In general, if you have a partner that will not accept your decision on ending the relationship, you should always choose to inform them over text. Otherwise, you might get stuck in endless discussions which will lead nowhere. 

Also, if you went only on a few dates and you’re not sure whether this can be called a relationship yet you are certain you want to put a stop to it, text them about it. Making big announcements for something that is still in the casual phase of dating is a drama that everyone wants to avoid. 

If you have been in a long relationship with your partner and it’s no longer working out, don’t break the news to them over a text message. You can invite them for coffee or a walk in your text and do it respectfully in person. You wouldn’t want to be left by your partner of three years over a simple, plain text either, right?

 

How to craft your break-up text message?

If you have decided to break up with someone over text, you will need to be kind, yet straightforward. Don’t send an extra short or long text as they will not deliver the message properly. Instead, follow this simple break up formula:

  1. Start with a compliment. Say what you loved about the relationship or the person e.g. long talk, fun road trip or their kindness. Write it from your heart so your partner knows you were as honest as you could have been.
  2. Explain your reason. You are breaking up with them for a certain reason or more of them. Make sure you explain why that is the deal breaker for you.
  3. Wish them all the best. Consider that this is your last message to them and write what you wish for them. Avoid the sarcastic, angry or negative tone. It simply didn’t work out and that’s fine!

And what happens if you are trying to get out of a really unhealthy relationship? In reality, your text should follow the same structure yet instead of focusing on complimenting the person, you should firmly explain why you wish to end this relationship. Show you are not looking to discuss things and that you’re not expecting a reply.

 

Can you break up and still be friends?

This doesn’t depend so much on your chosen break up method as it depends on you and your partner. For instance, maybe it was a blind date that didn’t go well, yet you both decided to give it another chance. After three or four times, you decide to end it. If they agree there was no spark between the two of you, and they wish to keep you in their lives, there is a pretty good chance you two will stay friends.

If this is something you want, you should write it clearly in your text. This is a good example of how to break up and show you still wish to be friends:

Hi Alex, it was great going to your favorite restaurant the other night. I had so much fun, yet, from my end – there’s no spark. It seems like it’s the same for you, am I right? I would love to continue having fun as friends!

If you’re looking to be friends with them, make sure your messages are written in a positive tone and that you are not focusing on the breaking up part. Highlight what you really like about them and keep it light and breezy!

 

What do you need to avoid when sending a break up text?

Never broken up with someone over text before? Don’t worry, it’s actually not that difficult. From all those who are already experts in this field, these are the common mistakes we gathered that they wish never happened. Make sure they never happen to you!

  • Don’t swear or insult. Besides being rude, you will show that your decision is not rational as it comes from anger.
  • Don’t be sarcastic or cynical. Breakups are already uncomfortable without comments which will make the person feel even worse.
  • Don’t write essays. Writing long breakup messages can seem like you’re sharing your point of view and asking them to share theirs. Keep it short!
  • Don’t send multiple texts. Send everyone in one message. Sending a few in a row can seem like you’re not so certain in your decision.
  • Don’t block them. As much as it helps you not to know if they replied, be reasonable and don’t treat them immediately like your worst enemy.
  • Don’t finish with a question. You are breaking up with them so your message shouldn’t be an opening for a discussion. Be affirmative.

If this is your first time you will break up with someone over text, just think about the text you would prefer if someone was breaking up with you. It doesn’t have to be poetic, beautiful and with perfect grammar, it just needs to be from the heart and with all the respect that person deserves!

 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Sex Robots

Sex Robots Are A Thing of the Present – No Longer The Future

Sex Robots Are A Thing of the Present – No Longer The Future

 

For years, I have thought about what it would be like to love and be intimate with sex robots.

Would it be similar to an actual person or more like a sex toy?

Would sex with a robot be similar to sex with a human or more like a silicone surrogate? If you have seen the movie Lars and the Real Girl, you could imagine the companionship one could have with sex robots.

If you have noticed the advances in technology, especially sex toys, you will know that they can be programmed even when you are far apart from a partner.

Long-distance sex toys are quite popular so that one partner can decide the speed and intensity for their partner from afar!

I think to myself… What would Betty Dodson do?

Then, I think she would probably try it out. And if she would, so would I! For science! I have a strong inner field researcher of life within me.

 

What about you?

Would you ever have sex with a robot? What about loving a machine, like in the popular movie Her?

Artificial intelligence can mimic interpersonal relationships so that everyone feels they have a partner.

Some people have told me it is easier to be intimate with someone or something that does not judge them.

Even if humans were capable of radical acceptance and non-judgement, I still believe that sex robots would exist.

Just like a sacred intimate experience, sex robots have a place too.

Even if it feels awkward, I think many partners in monogamous relationships would rather have a virtual or surrogate partner than a sex worker or opening up the relationship.

I am incredibly interested in your opinions on sex robots and what you and your partner(s) think about the idea of intimacy with a machine.

The conference for love with robots is actually coming up and you can find more information here.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

How To Quit Porn: A Step-By Step Guide

How To Quit Porn: A Step-By Step Guide

 

Let’s be frank, we have all explored the world of sexual fantasies in our own ways, yet how to quit porn for good if it’s no longer serving your curiosity and creativity? You’ve probably consumed enough porn materials and now you feel like it’s time for a porn detox. 

However, this is easier said than done. As it is with all the habits, once you are used to something, it’s not that easy to just kick it out of your life. And don’t get confused, nobody is saying porn is bad! There are no good and bad sites to it, the only deciding factor about it should be how YOU feel about it. 

So, if you no longer feel the same level of curiosity when consuming porn content. Maybe it’s time to rethink it and create some space for other habits that will make you happier. Here are the things you should do to make your porn detox a bit easier for yourself. 

 

Embrace the Rollercoaster

You might think that once you decide something, all you have to do is stick to it until that habit disappears, yet unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. In reality, some days will be a success, while others will seem like a complete disaster. Once you try to get rid of any habit, your emotions will become very intense and it will be really challenging to feel in control. Therefore, you will need to let go of the need to control. 

Two steps forward and one step back is still one step forward. When you have a bad day, just embrace it as something that needs to happen and know that day will end. It will be difficult to stay away from porn content, however, once you accept that this is not a linear process, you will feel a bit relieved. 

 

Set Small Targets

Don’t think about how to quit porn forever, think about quitting it first for one week. Forever is a very frustrating concept when you are trying to either adopt or kick out a habit. Instead, set smaller targets for yourself. Why don’t you just quit porn for one week? And then one more? This way, you will also experience mini achievements with your habit project and feel good about it. 

The reason why this battle ‘person vs. habit’ fails is that there is nothing positive and encouraging for you during your habit change. You are trying to stop consuming porn content and giving yourself some credit on this difficult path is surely a motivating trick. 

Below, you can find a few useful tips for those who have decided to quit porn:

  • Create your calendar and mark the days you haven’t been consuming any porn content. Seeing it all in one place can help you see how much you’re accomplishing every day.
  • If you usually watch porn in the evenings. Plan something interesting at that time (going for a jog or cooking dinner).
  • Try to stay away from all devices in your home as this will remind you too much of your addiction. Use your computer and mobile phone only when needed. 
  • Celebrate your first week of being porn-free with something that will motivate you. E.g. dinner with friends, an expensive massage or a new pair of sneakers.

 

Reboot Your Brain 

If you’re addicted to porn, just like any other addiction, there is a chemical response in your brain when you are consuming it. The number of dopamine receptors is being reduced due to the dopamine attack which happens while watching porn. This chemical reaction is to blame when a person starts having problems such as erectile dysfunction, delayed ejaculation, anxiety, depression, etc. 

So, to reboot your brain would mean to allow your brain to restore those dopamine receptors which were lost during overconsumption of porn. The idea of rebooting is to get you to that point of your life where there was no pornography. The bad news is rebooting your brain takes more time than rebooting your mobile device or computer. Expect to spend weeks or even months to see an improvement. After the rebooting process has been successfully completed, you should also get your sex urge back.

 

Creating Your Own System

People are not equally addicted to, let’s say, smoking, drinking, drugs or even porn. This means that addiction triggers also differ from one person to another. In other words, a system that worked for your friend struggling with the same addiction may not work for you because you are addicted due to different reasons, have different triggers and consume differently.

When do you usually watch porn? On which occasions do you feel you need more of it? Deeply analysing your addiction will help you fight it and ultimately win it. For instance, if you watch porn in the evening because you are bored alone at home, find hobbies in the evening or schedule more events with your friends at that time. 

If you turn to porn each time something bad happens at work and you want to escape the real world, find a person you can talk to about the work situations. It can be a colleague who is going through the same thing or your friend who is simply a good listener. The key is to understand why and when you need pornography in order to quit it successfully. 

 

Action!

It’s very admirable if you’ve decided to quit porn, however, in the majority of addiction cases, it simply won’t be enough. There is so much porn addiction around us because it’s so easy to find and consume it. What can you do to make it harder for yourself to consume porn content? Is it maybe canceling the subscription to your prefered websites? Deleting all the porn content you have downloaded on your computer? Blocking the free websites where you used to go when you had porn cravings? 

Anything you can do to prevent yourself from watching porn, you should do it. It might seem exaggerated at the beginning, yet keep in mind it’s very easy to fall into the addiction trap again. It’s not easy to free your mind from pornography, you will have to be persistent. With time, you will think less and less about porn and find other things that will bring you excitement in life!

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

become an LMFT

How to Become an LMFT

How to Become an LMFT

 

How does one become an LMFT? 

Great question – and we get asked how do therapists become therapists ALL the time! 

I am often asked how to become a therapist and what path I took to become one. There are often a lot of assumptions surrounding the process. And so I wanted to offer some insight for people who either want to become one, have a therapist, or just are generally curious. 

There is not one way to become a therapist. There are several different paths to accomplish this. First and foremost, you have to complete a bachelor’s degree and at least a masters and in some cases a doctorate. By and large, most therapists have a Master’s degree in some specific type of therapy or counseling. 

 

Therapists who Prescribe

Although not as common, therapists that prescribe are usually Psychiatrists (MD) or Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) or Psychiatric Nurse. Some of these practitioners may engage in some counseling, but often it seems that they work in conjunction with a therapist to help support a client/patient in the medication therapy. In order to be in either of these roles requires various certifications and training and/or medical school (in the case of the Psychiatrist). Obviously time to accomplish these certifications varies based on trajectory but can be anywhere from 3 to 8 years. 

 

Therapists who Conduct Assessments

Most therapists conduct some level of assessments in their practice. These can range from intake assessments and ongoing assessments to identify appropriate diagnosis and course of treatment for their clients. 

Psychologists (Masters or Doctor of Philosophy) and Doctors of Psychology (PsyD or PhD) often specialize in various areas of standardized assessments or testing. This can include things like neuropsychological exams, learning disabilities, mental status and cognitive testing, etc. Commonly we see these types of therapists or psychologists connected with universities, school systems, or medical facilities (hospitals, etc). 

Psychology is a broad field, but in terms of therapy we typically see a Masters, Psychology Doctorate, or Doctorate of Philosophy connected to Clinical Psychology. Clinical psychology focuses on treatment and assessment of emotional, mental, and behavioral disorders. In order to engage in this type of practice, you must complete a masters degree of usually 3 years or a doctoral degree of 4+ years. 

 

Therapists and Counselors

When we think of therapists we more commonly think of therapists who received Masters or Doctorate Degrees in Social Work (LCSW),  Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), Clinical Psychologists (PsyD or PhD) or Professional Counselors (LPC). Each of these specialities focus on providing clinical services, therapy, and counseling to their clients. Many of these therapists have different specializations and certifications to support their practice whether that is in substance abuse treatment, trauma treatment, sex therapy, couples therapy, etc. Although, each may have specialties, generally, each degree allows for therapists and counselors to be able to practice individual, group, or relational therapy in a clinical setting. In addition to case management and assessment. 

Below I have described the most common types of therapists noted above. 

  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) 
      • A LCSW is someone who has completed their Masters or Doctorate degree in Social work. A licensed clinical social worker focuses on the clinical aspects of social work rather than other concentration areas of community organization, case management, or other social work tracks. Simply completing a social work degree does not necessarily mean that they are therapists or clinicians
  • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)
      • I am totally biased on this one because this is what my degree and specialization is in. A person who is a LMFT has a Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy or in a related area with a concentration in MFT. This training focuses specifically on relational therapy and systemic thinking. This degree is predominately clinical and is often connected to family therapy or couples therapy.
  • Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC)
    • A person who is an LPC may have a Master’s Degree in various fields (school counseling, general counseling, psychology, etc). LPC’s are trained in a variety of clinical practices depending on their base degree, but are predominantly clinical professionals. Often specializing in individual, group, and substance abuse treatments. 

These tracks vary in requirements, however on average Master’s Levels Programs take about three years to complete and an additional two years to become licensed. In addition to our degrees, licenses, and certifications we are also required to take a certain number of Continued Education (CE) courses each year to be sure we are remaining up to date with our clinical practice. This is not the case for all practitioners. 

 

Typical Requirements to be a Licensed Practitioner

Although this varies state to state and is also dependent on the type of clinical degree you have. Generally the following criteria has to be met: 

  • Completion of Masters or higher degree
    • Practicum (supervised clinical experience)
    • Internship (a clinical experience unpaid in the field)
    • Specific amount of clinical hours (sometimes specified by individual, group, relational, and/or case management)
    • Specific amount of supervision by licensed professional
    •  Usually somewhere around 50-60+ credits hours
    • Coursework in clinical, developmental, and theoretical models of treatment
    • Thesis or Capstone presentation on your therapeutic methods and/or research
  • Post graduate Clinical Hours (usually about a year or two of clinical or case management experience)
  • Post graduate supervision hours (supervised by a licensed clinical practitioner within your field)
  • Successful Completion of Exam (Licensure or Board Certification) with passing score

 

State Licensure

Each state has different requirements for licensure and are also dependent on the type of clinician/therapist you are. Some licenses are more transferable than others across states. It is important before getting licensed in specific state that you research what your state requires in way of credits from masters, hours, and Continuing Education Credits, etc (see above). 

In Connecticut, we pay $320 per year to maintain a license and need a specific amount of Continuing Education Credits (CEs) per year. There are also certain types of CE’s that we are required to have. For instance, in MFT we need to get a certain amount of CE’s surrounding veterans and diversity. 

 

Insurances

As with other medical providers, in order to accept insurances therapists have to be paneled with each specific insurance company. Each insurance company has its own contracted rate for each provider based on credentials and area of service. Credentialing with insurance companies can be time consuming and arduous for therapists. 

Therapists can choose to contract with different insurance companies based on their access to patients, reimbursement rates, etc. If therapists do not want to contract with a specific company, they do not have to. They are still able to work with clients with that insurance company but charge a private pay rate and the client can bill their insurance for full or partial reimbursement or bill towards their deductible if they have one.

 

Associations

In addition to licensure and insurances, therapists also usually associate with various associations which require their own benefits and memberships. These can be general based on educational/certifcation background or specializations such as sexuality, trauma, addiction, couples, etc. 

Some of the most common ones are:

There are also associations for people based on their specialities, some of these include: 

These are some examples above, however there are many that have more specifications and more general. Each association allows various benefits, resources, and membership requirements. As therapists, we maintain various certifications and associations to support having the most up to date information within the mental health field. 

Obviously this is a broad overview on how to become a practicing therapist and clinician. Basically, we do a lot of work to become therapists and maintain our abilities to practice clinically. 

If you need help finding a therapist for you, feel free to reach out and we are happy to help you here at LCAT! We are a staff of LPC, LCSW, and LMFT’s (now you know what these mean!). 

Learn more about CE for therapists – learn unique couples counseling and sex therapy methodologies to help you with your clients.

If you have any questions, or for clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized sessions on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do.

non monogamous meaning

Non Monogamous Meaning Explained! 

Non Monogamous Meaning Explained! 

 

Please raise your hand if you are confused about the non monogamous meaning of romantic relationships. 

When asked about what non monogamous means, there are a variety of responses. 

In general, a non monogamous relationship means that individuals, single or within a couple, are able to love and / or connect sexually with more than one person. 

There are various types of non monogamous relationships with various meanings, and it’s important to know what they mean because non monogamous romantic relationships are complicated. 

There are a variety of non monogamous meaning definitions to learn: 

  • Monogamish – (brought to you by Dan Savage) which means mostly monogamous with some wiggle room in terms of their fidelity. So basically, it means monogamous with exceptions. 
  • Polyamory – more than one committed or love based relationship. This is also called “poly” or “polyam” in the community. 
  • Solo-Poly – more than one committed relationship with no hierarchy or primaries assigned. Primary relationship would be with oneself.
  • Kinky Play Partners – partners agreeing to a negotiated commitment of time, service, and an exchange of some sort. It can be once, yet often this term means it is ongoing. This arrangement can be based on love, friendship, and / or shared interest in some type of kink. 
  • Intentional Community – known as “communes” at times. A planned community designed to have a degree of cohesion and teamwork, where they share resources. This design may include non-monogamous relationship structures where individuals sleep in different bedrooms on different nights of the week.

What Do These Have In Common?

Non monogamous meaning to relationships includes communicating openly and honestly with all partner(s), even if you would rather avoid it. 

non monogamous meaning

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Transgender Teen

Supporting A Transgender Teen and Family in Transitioning 

Supporting A Transgender Teen and Their Family in Transitioning

 

Part of our work at Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is supporting transgender teen clients and their families to adjust. Coming out as a transgender teen is a process.

Often, it is complex for teens and their families, because it is a transition for the entire family system.

 

Basic Terms

Identifying as transgender is when someone is born as male or female and ascribed a gender of boy or girl at birth based on their genitals. When someone is transgender it means that they do not feel the gender ascribed to them at birth is accurate. 

Non-binary, gender creative, and gender expansive individuals are people who do not ascribe to the gender binary of male/female or man/woman. These individuals typically see gender as fluid or do not ascribe to one gender at all. 

Dead name refers to the name the individual was given at birth, not the name the individual chooses as they come out. 

Pronouns  are the way a person identifies. The most common pronouns are: she/her, they/them, he/him, ze/zir. When someone misgenders someone it is when someone uses the incorrect pronoun. This happens often when people come out as transgender or non-binary. The deliberate misuse and misgendering causes significant harm to the individual coming out.

Due to our society adjusting our perspectives on the LGBTQ+ community, we have made head way in seeing the people are able to come out earlier in their life (usually in adolescence where identity is a primary developmental task) thus allowing them to lead healthier adult lives. I will say it 10000 times that these outcomes are based on how the community, family, and close individuals around the person coming out respond or react to them coming out. 

If you are a close friend or family member of someone in the LGBTQ community, especially within the gender non-conforming or transgender population, it is incredibly important for you to learn and understand how your response can cause harm to the individual coming out. 

 

Transitioning the Family

For the family, adjusting to their teenage family member using a different name and pronoun can be incredibly difficult. Even in the most supportive environments this is complicated. If you had any beliefs that may make the circumstance less supportive it can result in massive issues for the teen themselves and the family. 

One of the most important things to do as a family member is to work through the grief you have. Grief is a normal part of any major changes in someone’s life, this is no different. What I see most in families is the need to grief what they expected and how to integrate that with who the teen is and the memories they have with them. 

The most common thing I see in families is people not addressing their grief and projecting (putting it on) those around them, especially the transgender teen who is coming out. This looks like making it about themselves, arguing about what pronoun is appropriate, using the teens name vs. dead naming them, or misgendering. This makes someones coming out experience about you rather than the person coming out, which is a problem.

To be extremely clear, I am not saying you should not address your own personal feelings, grief, and experience – in fact I am saying the opposite. HOWEVER, this should be done NOT with the person who is coming out. The person coming out has enough of their own stuff to deal than trying to help you manage your experience and reaction to this. I would suggest finding a therapist or joining a support group where you can process your feelings and experiences safely without causing harm to the person who is coming out. 

 

Progress not Perfection

It is okay if you are having a difficult time with your teen transitioning. However, it is not okay to take that confusion out on those around. 

Family and friends do not have to be perfect. Yet, if you mess up – OWN IT. Owning can look like a simple “I am sorry.” Or owning it means asking clarification! Similarly, it could be learning more about transitioning through finding helpful resources. 

This does not look like making it about yourself or justifying why you did what you did. Please, do not have the individual coming out teach you before you do research.  

  • taking accountability
  • asking for clarification
  • apologizing
  • doing your research.

 

Please, try your best to respect someone’s name and pronouns. 

Think about how as a culture we shift last names of those that are married or when celebrities change their name. Therefore, an individual can use the same cognitive shifts for those in their life.

If you are finding it challenging or difficult please seek support from a professional to deconstruct why that is.

You are not perfect, I do not ever expect perfection from my clients. I do expect progress tho. Progress not perfection.

If you have any questions, or for clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized sessions on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

May Mental Health Awareness Month

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

 

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. 

The purpose of Mental Health Awareness in May is to create opportunities to advocate about mental health and why it’s important.

I cannot say enough the importance of building more awareness, education, and compassion around various aspects of mental health. 

 

Mental Health Matters! 

Every person has mental health. Mental health does not only matter for those who fit into specific categories in the DSM. For many years, mental health and therapy have been stigmatized in our society resulting in inaccurate information and harmful stereotypes.

Many of the clients I work with are focused on deconstructing these narratives that there is “something wrong with them” for seeking therapy. We often explore where these beliefs came from, where they learned it, and provide education around what mental health is. 

Mental health matters!

And if we ignore our own mental health there are higher likelihood of engaging in maladaptive strategies to deal with our emotions, within our relationships. And usually increases likelihood of physical health issues. 

When we do not acknowledge the person as a whole (mind, body, and spirit) we miss opportunities for healing and growth physically and mentally. May reminds us of the importance of focusing on our mental, emotional, and psychological needs rather than just our physical selves. 

 

Mental Health and Trauma

A large component of mental health is trauma. Trauma is “an emotional embodiment hangover” where an event or events occur resulting in the stress being stored in your body. And brain resulting in a variety of symptoms (re-experiencing, avoidance, depression, anxiety, nightmares, paranoia, hypervigilance, etc).

Trauma is NOT just extreme events like car accidents, death, gun violence, war, etc. Although these events certainly are traumatic, trauma is much more broad than what we have stereotypically acknowledged before. Acknowledging the depth of what trauma can be is necessary to engage in supporting people’s mental health. With the limited definition our society has worked within, it  minimizes and dismisses how trauma has impacted much of the population thus minimizing our ability to recognize and acknowledge mental health in each individual. 

As a therapist who does much of my work through a trauma lens, I see how significant trauma impacts people’s mental health. If we look at Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) we can see how trauma is a public health issue. 

Our brains and bodies get stuck in these events and often cannot differentiate between what is currently happening and the trauma that we experienced. This lights up pathways in our brain to tell us something is not right. When someone has experienced chronic trauma or has lived in “fight, flight, or fawn” for an extended period of time. People’s brains are more apt to respond as if the trauma is occurring again. 

 

Tips to Help Your Mental Health

  • Drink lots of water, staying hydrated actually helps you mentally as well as physically
  • Sleep the appropriate amount for your age (usually somewhere between 7-9 hours for the average adult). Sleep increases our emotional resources and functioning
  • Meditate! Meditation or other mindful activities has been shown to greatly aid people’s ability to self-regulate. Improve their mental and emotional well being. Increases Mind/Body connection
  • Deep breath… if you can practice deep breathing (diaphragmatic) you are finding the most accessible coping skill you can use anywhere. Breathing helps us calm our bodies in order to calm our minds
  • Move your body… emotion requires motion… moving our bodies allows us to move energy and emotion within us
  • Set boundaries for yourself around time to focus on your emotional and mental needs
  • Set boundaries in relationships and identify ways to communicate your needs to those around you
  • Find a therapist, life coach, or religious or spiritual support to aid you on your journey of healing and/or growth

 

 If you have any questions, or for clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized sessions on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do.

say no

Best Tips to say NO to Someone Without Excuses

Best Tips to say NO to Someone Without Excuses

 

Say No is a complete sentence, and “no” can be said in a kind tone and with loving intentions. People can be polite and gracious; “no, thank you. It doesn’t meet my needs.”

You don’t have to make excuses. The best tips to say no work when you are in a place where it is safe to do so.

In other words, you can say “no, I am not able to commit to that right now.”

Saying no can be challenging at first, yet knowing your priorities can make it easier. 

 

What If Someone Wants To Know Your Why

Others often want a justification or an explanation, yet no one has a right to that information. 

Protecting energy, time, and peace is vital for all individuals to live harmoniously. 

Actually, the intention behind a “no” is a place of love. The way that other individuals respond is not your responsibility.

If others benefit from being around you because it meets their needs, your job is to protect how it affects you. 

You have to be true to yourself and how you want to feel. 

For example, saying “thank you for the invite, and I cannot be there” is a boundary. 

A boundary is the distance between how much I can love you and myself at the same time. 

Sometimes those you set boundaries with will not understand. On the other hand, some may start to respect you for having set the boundary, and give themselves permission to do so, too. 

 

No is Allowed

What the other person thinks about receiving a “no” to their request is on them. 

This is not in the control of the person who said “no,” nor are their feelings.

For example, if your family invites you to a conversation or an event, you can say no. 

If your coworker asks for you to do them a favor, you can say no. 

You are at choice, as an empowered adult. If others think that you are selfish, they are wrong. It is everyone’s individual duty to engage in self-love, create their space, and decide who gets to come in and out of those boundaries. 

Even though it may seem like your family benefits from your time with them…if it’s ultimately doing damage to your energy, your spirit, your mindset…then where does that leave YOU?

It’s not selfish to create your space and protect it.

If you have any questions, or for clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized sessions on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Demisexuality

What is Demisexuality? 

What is Demisexuality? 

Demisexuality is a broad sexual identity that focuses on sexual attraction being strongly linked to someone’s emotional bond with someone. Someone who is demisexual does not [often] feel attraction without emotional connection. 

Someone who is demisexual can be attracted to any gender or person and may identify as straight or same or all sex or gender attracted (LGBTQI+). 

When working with demisexual people, often I hear that they do not identify physical attraction to anyone UNLESS they have an emotional bond and connection. Therefore, for them, there isn’t love at first sight. Demisexuality is an identity where connection is where sexual energy comes from. 

Demisexuals rarely report that they have attraction to someone they have only seen in passing. 

Emotional bonds are emotional connections between people. 

There are a variety of people who will not have partnered sex with someone until they feel like time has passed and they “have gotten to know someone”. However, that is different from what demisexual people’s experience may be. 

Demisexuality Explained

People who are demisexual do not feel attraction to someone else unless emotional connection happens. People who choose to wait to have sex with someone usually still feel attracted to someone much earlier in the process. 

For example, with clients who do not want to have sex until they feel comfortable while online dating they still are able to “swipe right or left” based on their initial response to people’s profile (pictures and information). 

My clients who identify as demisexual have reported having a much harder time online dating in “swiping.” 

Luckily, they begin to know as they start messaging or dating someone rather than just based on pure attraction.

Demisexual individuals value sex as important to them. The common thing in my clients who identify as demisexual is that it matters about the person. And their connection and that that connection is of primary importance. 

People who are demisexual often report the following: 

  • Rarely feel sexual attraction to strangers or acquaintances
  • Felt sexual attraction towards people close to them (friends, romantic partners, etc)
  • Emotional connection determines the level of attraction (sexual, romantic, platonic, etc)
  • Limited interest in engaging in sexual activities regardless of the way someone looks
  • Want a variety of romantic, platonic, etc. relationships because emotional connection is a primary need they have
  • Often need increased levels of emotional bonds (communication and connection) from those in their life

This does not mean that demisexual people do not have sex with people that they are not attracted to. People of variety of identities choose to have sex or not have sex with people regardless of their attraction. Or just because someone feels sexual attraction to someone does not automatically mean they will have sex with them.

I think it is important to recognize that people’s choice around who they choose to have sex with is their own. Allow the individual to identify their own identities rather than others trying to define what someone else’s identity is. 

If you do not understand, please seek to understand and be curious rather than engage in behavior where judgments occur. 

If you have any questions, or for clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized sessions on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do