Archive | April 2016

Trapped by Love

images (8)Over the past ten years, I’ve worked in a predominately male environment, so I’ve heard one or two men mention the fact that they’d gotten “trapped?” by women. Trapped? I found it very interesting that grown men would use that terminology when describing a consensual relationship between two adults.

I thought that “trapped” was too strong of a word to be used by grown people who had entered relationships at free will.

One day I had what I suppose that you may call an epiphany, I was talking to the Animal Control Officer and he was having a hard time catching a pack of wild dogs. I asked, “Why don’t you put out a trap and catch them?” He shook his head in dismay and said, “I can’t catch them. I’ve put all types of food in the trap. They just will not get in the trap. As a matter of fact when I’m in the area that they are roaming in, as soon as I turn the corner, they look at my truck and run!”

I started laughing. I said, “Do you have your siren or flasher on when you turn the corner?” He said, “No.” I remarked, “Now wait a minute, from everything that I’ve ever read, dogs are color-blind and I doubt that they can read. If your siren isn’t on and you don’t have your lights flashing; how would a dog know your truck from anybody else’s truck?” He said, “I don’t know, all I know is that they do recognize it.”

That told me that even a dog can recognize a trap and once he recognizes that a trap is a trap; the trap no longer effective. Dogs have enough sense not to get into something that they know is detrimental to their freedom. Young men, old men do yourselves a favor and don’t ever tell anyone that a woman trapped or tricked you into doing anything!

That goes for women as well, I’ve even heard women use that lame excuse for relationships that have gone bad. Don’t be so quick to blame someone else for your poor choices. We are blessed with the power of choice. Exercise your power.

When grown people make bad decisions, they should be man or woman enough to be prepared to suffer grown folks consequences and not be so quick to try to put the blame on someone else.

Making Promises to Please People – A Nasty, Harmful Habit

images (7)I frequently give this example and it is potent.

You leave for a trip and your seven year old child reminds you that Friday is her big game. “Will you be back, Daddy?” She asks.

You promise her that no matter what happens, you will be there. You know full well your flight arrives late at night. Yet you promise her.

What just happened?

Three things. One, you made a false promise to someone who trusts you more than anything she knows. Two, you lied to yourself. Three, you felt nothing since the promise was not that important–and even if you did feel a tinge of guilt you are supremely confident you will “make it up to here.” I may add that a fourth thing that has happened is that you may actually feel good that you don’t have to think about it.

All three are devastating to a relationship and fatal to earning someone’s trust, even someone as innocent and immature as a seven year old.

You see, we make many promises that are worthless but may make us feel good momentarily. Like when you promise your wife you will take care of that little handyman job–and never give it a thought.

Why do we do it? There are many reasons.

  • We like to be liked. So it is hard for us to say no, even when it is staring us in the face.
  • We have the best of intentions of keeping promises we have made.
  • It get us away from the hard choices we have to make to keep the promise. Like in the case where you promised to come back early on Friday. You have to reschedule your meetings, rebook the ticket for an earlier flight, etc. etc. Much easier to pacify a little child with a simple lie.

How does it impact your commitment? You see promises that are kept and kept consistently become commitments. When it becomes a part of your lifestyle and your behavior, your word becomes a bond.

So here is my advice.

1. Take all promises seriously.

2. Do not try to “pacify” people with little white lies.

3. Treat unkept promises as a character flaw. Only then will you take your promises seriously.

4. Be discerning in making commitments—saying no may hurt, but it will do far less damage than a promise that is not kept.

Pay special attention to making promises to little ones. They are not only very sensitive, they are more mature in receiving and interpreting signals from their loved ones than we give them credit for.

Marriage and The Fear of Intimacy

download (8)Marriage and the Fear of Commitment

Many years ago my wife and I were surprised when a friend announced that she and her long time boyfriend broke-up. They were together for fifteen years. During that time, each lived in their own apartment, moving back and forth between apartments as it suited them. She asked that he move in but he never did. During that fifteen year period of time she discussed marriage with him many times. He always reassured her that they would marry but that, for one reason or another, they must wait. Finally, they decided to marry and set a wedding date. He then promptly broke off the relationship and she never saw him again. It was rumored that he married someone else but that was never confirmed.

Commitment phobia or the fear of intimacy is all too real. The rate of divorce in the United States is estimated to be about fifty percent. While there are no statistics on how many of these are due to fear of intimacy, there is no question that at least some are. An interesting article in the Huffington Post explains some of the reasons for divorce.

Stefanie Stahl wrote a book entitled, Yes, No, Maybe: How to Recognize and Overcome the Fear of Commitment, that delves into the reasons why some people fear closeness. Stahl points out that marriage does not mean the absence of fear of commitment and that individuals who are married for years can harbor this fear, ultimately spelling the end of the marriage. She goes on to explain some of the many ways intimacy-phobes escape commitment. Here are just a few:

1. Escape through work: As Americans we respect the work ethic but fail to recognize that it can be easily be used to escape from serious relationships. This happens with some medical doctors, lawyers and other professionals. Simply, life can be filled with so many work and volunteer projects that there is no time for intimacy. It’s a good excuse for putting off dating, coming home early, truly being in a marriage, getting married or even getting to know available people.

2. Escape through infidelity: What better way is to get out of a marriage or a serious relationship than to cheat. In effect, it destroys the relationship. One has to wonder how many divorces happen because of just this strategy.

3. Avoiding any kind of relationship: There are those who never get close to intimacy because they make themselves utterly unavailable. For these people and many other commitment-phobes, being in a committed relationship feels too confining and even claustrophobic.

4. Escaping through illness: The “phobe” suddenly develops a toothache or some other problem when it’s time to meet so that the meeting with the supposed lover never occurs.

5. Escape through the loss in sexual interest: In this scenario the “phobe” starts off a relationship very passionately and then totally loses interest so that the partner becomes extremely frustrated and leaves the relationship.

These are just a few strategies that Stahl discusses in her book.

The Causes of Commitment Phobia:

The causes of commitment-phobia are as varied as the people who suffer from it. Typically, many people with commitment issues have complained of having experienced poor romantic relationships in the past or witnessed, first-hand, disastrous relationships such as their parents’ acrimonious relationship. Other common causes of commitment phobia may include:

Fear of, or having had, the relationship end suddenly, without notice or warning signs.
Fear of not being in the “right” relationship.
Fear of, being in an unhealthy relationship (characterized by abandonment, infidelity, abuse, etc.)
Trust issues because of past hurts inflicted by those close to the person.
Childhood trauma or abuse.
Unmet childhood needs or attachment issues.
Complicated family dynamics while growing up.

One of the most profound reasons for the fear of intimacy is what psychologists refer to as attachment. From the time we are born it is important that we are nurtured, held and caressed by our mothers.

However, there are mothers who bring problems to their infant that go back to when they themselves were infants and how they were treated by their mothers. For example, a mother who has been traumatized or is a very insecure and depressed person may not be able to provide the kind and type of nurturing that will help that infant grow into a secure and confident type of person. What this translate into is that this individual will not be able to attach to a significant other in ways that feel safe and assuring. Another way of stating this is to say that our childhood experiences stemming all the way back to infancy, determines how we interact with others and how well we can enter into committed relationships.

Going back to the situation described at the beginning of this article, it is safe to assume that both of these individuals feared intimacy. The boyfriend could sustain the relationship so long as they had separate apartments and had no final date for marriage. Once it was decided they would marry, fears of intimacy took over, probably having to do with loss of control, being swallowed up by the other, and being stuck in a “forever” situation from which there is no escape.

On the other hand, she also had commitment problems. Her’s were manifested in the fact that she could wait around all of those years in the hope that he would marry. As long as he was nearby, she could tolerate what seemed to be his logical reasons for waiting.

In the interests of being fair to her, many people like her are seduced by the promise of marriage at some time in the future only to discover that the future never comes. There are those people who break-up and come together again, always with the promise that they will make it permanent.


How to Know If He Loves You

images (5)So here you are, but before you get your hopes up… I need to tell you that there is a 99% chance that this guy isn’t in love with you if you haven’t had sex with him yet.

STOP! Hold your horses, this information doesn’t mean that you should immediately go out and sex him. Before you do that you need to assess a few things like:

– Is he compatible with you?
– Are you attracted to him?
– Is he attracted to you?
– Do you have an emotional bond/connection?
– Is he mature enough to commit?
– Can you see a future with this guy?

In the event that you do have sex with him you need to have ticked all of the above boxes especially the emotional connection box. If a guy doesn’t have an emotional connection to you and the sex is bad to average he will hit the road like Road Runner – beep beep!

He loves me, he loves me not?

It is always hard to tell and the signs vary from man to man but some of the most common ways he will show that he is in love with you is if he…

Replaces I with we.

If you are featuring in his future projections then something is definitely going on.

Treats you with respect.

It may not seem like the most vibrant sign but respect is King to a man. If he respects your opinion and doesn’t belittle you, he values you and your opinion.

Shows you that he cares.

A man who is in love with you won’t make you wonder if he is in love with you he will leave no room for doubt. If you are reading this article, it’s probably a sign that he doesn’t love you.

He introduces you to his friends and family.

If a man doesn’t invite you to meet or socialize with his friends and family then he isn’t at that stage where he wants to be in a relationship with him. Men usually take longer to get to this point than women do.

He wants to protect, provide and take care of you.

He isn’t a PDA (Public Displays of Affection) phobe.

He let’s you know that he is thinking about you. A man who is in love with you will call and text you on a regular basis.

He tells you he loves you. Pretty obvious right!

4 Easy Ways to Capture His Heart

images (6)If you’re a woman who loves your man too much, what are the things that you can do for him to reciprocate your feelings? Or if you are the type who has the tendency to be obsessed with a man, how can you be in a healthy relationship and finally meet you’re Mr Right? These are the questions that women who love too much asks every time. Although they seem really complex and difficult, there are actually a few things that we can begin doing or practicing to get the lifetime partner we desire. And it all begins with ourselves.

Here are 4 easy, realistic ways to capture his heart and make him love you forever.

  • Analyze yourself. Your traits and attitude towards men in general.

Face the mirror and ask yourself, are you desirable? If your answer is No, then your answer is Incorrect. Ask yourself the same question over and over until your answer becomes a YES. Because you are indeed desirable. The problem for women who love too much or at least for those who thinks they are, is the big word Confidence. We tend to cling to men because we feel that nobody else will love us when they leave us. Little did we know that they leave us because we push them away with our possessive attitude. No man would want to be with a girl who thinks they are ugly.

One trick that I learned from a former colleague is to face the mirror as soon as you wake up in the morning. Tell yourself YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL several times until you really feel beautiful with your messy hair, hanging eye bags, puffy cheeks, pale skin, bad breath… Imagine if you can feel beautiful with this look then no other look or situation can mess up your attitude towards the day. DO this and notice change.

  • Analyze the traits of the man you desire. His education level, his likes, and basically what will take him to look up from his phone and take a good look at you

What does he do? What are his hobbies? His family background? Is he the macho or sensitive type? Is he closer to his mom or dad? You might think I am kidding but this is really important. My husband is closer to his dad than his mom. Good thing his dad puts his family first that’s why my husband is the family man that he is.

I believe this is an important question as it might also make you rethink on the “man that you want now” compared to “the ideal man” that you want to spend the rest of your life with. This will also make you in a sense “adjust” your values, your hobbies, your likes with him. If he likes watching basketball like my husband, then you might want to read/research on basketball stuff. If he’s a gamer, you might want to install the same game app in your phone. Sometimes you must meet him halfway without changing yourself completely.

  • Show him you need him while keeping your independence.

The Yin Yang of a woman in a relationship. How to do this exactly is the biggest question. I came to know this after I begin to notice that my guy friends marry single mothers. What is it with single mothers? One, they have a child/children who completes their being. In short, they don’t need a man who can complicate things. So they are very, very independent. But then someone nice will come along. Maybe a guy who accepts her, her situation and her children. And so her happy ever after has arrived. A woman must be independent enough to identify herself as an individual apart from the one she loves too much. And yet make him know that her life would be more meaningful when he’s on it.

  • Make him realize that you “complete him”. Only YOU.

This is the last advice that I have, and this is also the easiest. Being a woman who love too much, this will come naturally for you. I assume that when you say that you love a guy too much means that your favorite song is Cater to you by the Destiny’s Child eh? If you don’t know it then this is part of the lyrics: “Let Me Help You