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Sex with Dr. Jess


June 28, 2019

How to Prepare For Marriage, Get Over an Ex and Repair a “Broken Relationship”

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Jess and Brandon weigh in on listener questions related to breakups, rough patches, managing jealousy in the age of social media and wedding planning anxieties.

**Please find a rough transcript below for this episode.**

How do I not get jealous when it seems like everyone else is so happy – especially on social media?

First – know that your comparisons aren’t realistic.

Comparing your real-life relationship to the highlight reels that other couples post on social media will inevitably produce an unsatisfactory result. Photos, videos and other edited posts offer a momentary snapshot that is incomplete, condensed and/or scripted and your life is far more complex than one post can illustrate.

I don’t post about the fact that I ate a chocolate bar that I took from the plane for breakfast this morning, or that my tummy is hurting. I don’t post about the fact that the sex we had the other night was really weird and sort of uncomfortable. I don’t post about being constipated or the fact that I had a terrible night last night and came home pissy over traffic and my team losing in a sort of frustrating game of Ultimate.

So first and foremost, know that you’re comparing your regular life to less than 1% of someone else’s life.

Next, know that jealous is normal. Admit to it. Identify if there is something they have that you want. And then identify what you can do about it.

Some jealousy can help you to feel inspired, so when it comes to what you see on social media, calculated comparisons can be useful. As long as you realize that social media offers only one depiction of a multi-faceted relationship, it can be useful to learn from other couples. For example, perhaps you follow a couple who prioritizes health and fitness and at times it motivates you to to the same. Or perhaps you follow a couple who travels and you use their itineraries as inspiration for your next trip. Experiences of normative jealousy can be helpful if they help you to recognize what you want and how you can change your thoughts and behaviour to deepen fulfilment. If, however, feeling jealousy leads to distressful thoughts (e.g. feeling badly about yourself), they can be damaging.

Once you’ve acknowledged the emotion, you can examine why you’re feeling it and what you might do about it. What shifts can you make — behaviourally and cognitively — to learn from this feeling.

How can you use jealous feelings to look at what you feel you’re missing and make changes OR accept your circumstances in the case of things you can’t change. For example, if you feel jealous of another person’s financial success and you acknowledge this feeling, you may be able to take steps to improve your own confidence or make adjustments to your own finances.

You’ll also want to look at ways to build confidence overall. If you admire or covet something somebody else has, what can you do to achieve/embody this in your own life? You can’t have everything they have, but you can make changes to the way you think and the way you behave right now.

And finally, consider the evidence that supports your jealousy. Should you really feel jealous or is it an irrational emotional response? If a friend came to you with the same problem and feelings, what would you say?

I should note that envy often refers to negative emotions directed at another/others (e.g. resentment, malevolence) whereas jealousy often refers to longing for something that someone else has. If you’re feeling envious, you’ll want to really work to address the underlying jealousy because it’s exhausting to live your life directing anger and malevolence at other people.

My husband and I are going through a rough patch and it feels like we’ve been fighting for years. We barely even touch anymore. We had a heart to heart last week and agreed to spend the full weekend together next week when he comes back into town. He works over 500 miles away. We want to take this time to reconnect – it’s actually our 10-year anniversary —  but we aren’t sure where to begin.

You aren’t going to heal years of hurt and resentment in one weekend, but you have to begin one day at a time.

If you’re struggling in your relationship, you might want to begin by taking stock of what you appreciate about your partner and your relationship. Make a list of why you care about them and what is going well at this time. You may also want to consider elements from the past that you can re-inject into the relationship.

The practice of gratitude is associated with higher self-esteem, lower stress levels and more compassion; couples who practice gratitude are happier in their relationships and feel closer to one another, so start today. Once you have your gratitude list, being and end each day by reminding yourself of one thing for which you’re grateful. You might take a moment to reflect on your own or consider talking to yourself in the mirror if you’re really committed to the process.

If you’re going through a rough patch when it comes to sex, don’t feel pressure to have the hottest anniversary sex ever. Instead, see if you can just reach out and touch one another in non-sexual ways. If you’re driving, can you hold hands in the car? If you’re watching a movie, can you snuggle up? Don’t put too much pressure on yourselves to fix everything in one weekend. Instead, use the time to try and remember the happier times and recall some of those feelings and see how those feelings fit into the present. You can’t recreate what you had, but you can create a new version and it can be even better.

Take a social media break. You don’t have to cut him off forever, but staying connected on social media after a difficult break-up is a recipe for disaster. Keeping tabs on one another or broadcast passive-agressive posts will only fuel your anger, resentment and sadness and do nothing to motivate you to seek happiness. When you’re happy, you’ll attract other good people whom you can trust with little effort.

Change your daily routine. Sometimes the hardest part of a break-up isn’t the loss of companionship, but the major shift in practical routines. Did you used to go for coffee together each morning? Find a new morning ritual with a friend, co-worker or neighbour so that you don’t find yourself in the coffee shop reminiscing about the time you spent together soaking in your morning high. A longer relationship often results in more engrained behaviours and habits, but you can break these patterns almost immediately by making conscious decisions to change small daily habits one at a time.

Try something new without the goal of meeting a partner. Boosting your self-esteem is of paramount importance after a break-up —particularly if your ex cheated. In between crying sessions, movie nights and ice cream indulgences, promise yourself that you’ll try something new and challenging in the next two weeks. Book and pay for this activity in advance and if you can, sign up with a friend. Whether you take a dance class, learn to cook Indian food or take a rock climbing lesson, you’ll benefit from a boost in self-esteem and an increase in the desire to try new adventures — including dating.

I’ve got anxiety over my upcoming wedding. It’s not about getting married, but I find that I’m just getting stressed about the wedding itself with all of the work and planning. You said that your wedding wasn’t stressful, so how do I

A certain degree of anxiety can be a good thing, as it indicates that you care and can help you to perform at your optimal. However, your wedding day should be an enjoyable experience as opposed to a performance, so you’ll want to address the source of your anxiety.

If disagreements with your partner or their family about the wedding itself are a source of anxiety, it’s important to address these issues now. When you’re married, you tend to fight about kids, sex, money and housework; when planning the wedding, you tend to fight about money, family/in-laws and labour. The fights are similar with family subbed in for kids (in many cases). One of the big mistakes we make is assuming that the tension will dissipate after the wedding and the opposite is true. If you’re feeling resentment about money, family or division of labour during the wedding planning, these issues will likely intensify with time if you don’t work to resolve them now.

I suggest that you STOP planning your wedding now; instead, start planning your marriage.

Divert a set percentage (20%?) of your wedding planning time and budget to investing in your relationship. You might go to counselling or simply spend time together not talking about the wedding. Go take a course (perhaps study the language of the country you’ll visit on your honeymoon), go to a health spa, take a tour of your own city or take an unpaid day off work. As our emotional and intellectual resources are diverted to planning (and transition), we have less time to invest in ourselves and in our relationships. And if you’re planning a wedding, you’re likely experiencing tension with other involved parties (your parents, your partner’s parents, your wedding party members), so your patience may be depleted; don’t expend all of your energy on others or allow your tension from other relationships to get misdirected at your partner. Take the time and money NOW to work on your relationship.

You talk a lot about relationships, but I’m single. I feel like I’m missing out, but I also don’t want to settle. I want a relationship, but I’m also happy when I’m single. So what I’m asking is how do I reconcile this?

Rest assured that being single does not mean you’re unhappy.

If you’re happy when you’re single, you’re more likely to be happy if/when you decide to partner up. One person is not going to positively overhaul your constitution or overall mood — you have to take responsibility for your own feelings and how you live your life.

Being happily single might involve being open to new intimate relationships or it might involve a preference to remain single for a given period of time (or forever); how you define “happily single” is ultimately up to you.

Consider the benefits of being single:

Know that the latest research is falling on your side in terms of happiness: new research suggests that singles report higher levels of fulfilment, self-determination and personal growth.

  • You can still hang out with couples! When you do, you get the best of both worlds — social support as well as freedom to grow. You can travel, eat and explore with your coupled friends, but leave as you please when you need space. Self-expansion has been shown to be vital to healthy relationships and it’s one area in which many couples struggle.
  • You’re more likely to cultivate meaningful and intimate relationships with friends; when you partner up, your friend circle shrinks because you tend to invest more time into your romantic relationship. Because love and social support come in many forms, it’s important to maintain social ties with friends and family whether you’re single or partnered.

This podcast is brought to you by Desire Resorts.

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Rough Transcript:

This is a computer-generated rough transcript, so please excuse any typos. This podcast is an informational conversation and is not a substitute for medical, health or other professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the services of an appropriate professional should you have individual questions or concerns.

How to Prepare For Marriage, Get Over an Ex and Repair a Broken Relationship

00:00:05 – 00:05:06

You’re listening to the sacs with Dr Jess podcast sacks and relationship advice you can use tonight. Welcome to the sex with Dr jazz podcast. I’m your co host Brandon wear. Hey, hey, this is just a Riley here. Your friendly neighborhood sex and relationship expert. Thank you to desire resorts for their ongoing support of this podcast, desire has multiple locations on the Mayan Rivera as well as clothing. Optional couples only cruising in Europe. Check them out at desire experience. Now, Brandon and I are back in Toronto just for today. We came from Stratton, Vermont, we were at the wanderlust festival, and wanderlust is an outdoor yoga music meditation. Festival that’s focused on helping people to find their true, north, whatever that may be. And we were there with we’ve I’ve and womanizer, and we had such an incredible response to the sessions, especially the mindful sex session. And it was really cool for me to talk to people who already integrate mindfulness into their daily lived practice, but were simply looking to bridge, that practice and make sure that it was extended into their intimate relationships and sex lives, as somebody who’s not a Yogi or a yoga practitioner. I can tell you, I was a little unsure about the vibe before we went I thought to myself, my going to be doing yoga forest in. I dunno trying to stretch and not being able to maybe even granola and I’m down with the granola part, totally do love knows for Nola. But the rest of it, I wouldn’t say that I was intimidated, but it was unsure as to how the event was going to unravel. It was great. Is it because you saw forest bathing on the schedule is real man. It was forest bathing wasn’t it? Yes. So it has to do with, like walking through the forest and getting to know the plants and foraging. So it’s not as though you’re rubbing leaves all over your body will maybe they are I didn’t go to the forest bathing session, but they had really cool hikes hikes, for example, where you would hike to waterfalls, and they had a cellist playing at the top. So it was a really, really neat experience. And I bring it up because I wanted to talk for a moment about we’ve ibe and womanizer and many of you, because I talk about it often, you’re probably familiar with the we vibe suite of products. They started with couples vibrator designed specifically for penis in vagina sex, and they’ve sold millions of those, and they have a range of other products. My favorite is the we’ve I’ve touch, I know, Brandon’s favourite is the we vibe pivot, but I also wanted to bring up womanizer and I know some people are a little off put by the name. But this is all about. Reclaiming the language, the womanizer brand has some really cool and unique products. So each product has a little round opening that is designed to fit over the head of the clitoris, but you can use all along your lips and people use it on their nipples. And what it does is it creates a suction likes insane, but it’s not actually such sucking. It’s using what they call pleasure air technology, so tiny little bursts of air to create that, that overwhelming sucking sensation. And if you’ve never had an orgasm before some people are learning orgasm with the womanizer, and if you have had an orgasm or two before I remember the staff from good for her, which is a sex positive shop here in Toronto, saying that it felt like having their first orgasm all over again. Maybe I should try. You used it on your nipples. I mean listen. I’ll try anything almost anything, but it’s only your left nipple just the left his loved ones. Just so much more sensitive. How did you discover that babe? Well, it was during a forest bathing at the wanderlust festival, three. No just kidding. I don’t know. I just happen. Each figured learn your body man. Yeah. You gotta get to know your body in our forest or in the bedroom force bathing or not. Yes. Anyhow, so checkout wonder less festival really cool. And they have events across the globe. And checkout, we’ve ibe obviously online, if you haven’t yet, we’re going to be doing giveaway with them, and womanizer global is the handle for the womanizer toys. If you’re looking for something unique definitely have a look. Now we have a number of questions to get through today. Love me, some questions, some listeners. So I love that. You are sending in your questions. Some of them are really long. So I have to pair, some of them down this first person wants to know how do I not get jealous when it seems like everyone else is so happy, especially on social media.

00:05:07 – 00:10:04

Show media. I think we all struggle with this. And so I think the first thing to know is that your comparisons aren’t realistic comparing your real life relationship to the highlight reels of other people or other couples or other people in your field. It’s inevitably going to produce frustration and jealousy, and just general dissatisfaction, because photos, videos, edited posts, they offer this momentary. Snapshot that’s totally incomplete. It’s condensed, it’s scripted and your life in real life is just more complex than one post can illustrate when I think about what I post on social media. So first of all, I take a whole bunch of Vickers before I decide on one that I like, and then we’re filtering them, and then I’m writing the post, and I’m rereading the post, and sometimes I write a post, and I handed to Brandon, and I say, does this sound stupid. And he’s a. Yeah. That’s terrible. Never say that. But I think we do Dr everything that we’re putting out there. No one very few people have I seen that are completely honest all the time on social, like who’s going to be either crappy day today. It really sucked any sort of the last quarter or the last three months or five months. I don’t talk about the fact that there wasn’t any food in the house this morning. So I ate a chocolate bar that I stole from not stole that I took from an airplane for breakfast, this morning that I have a tummy ache. I don’t post about the fact that, oh, I don’t know if we’ll have time to talk about this today, we might have to do it another day. But the sex we had the other night was kind of weird, and it was a little uncomfortable. Speak for yourself line for me. Fine fine is Michael’s fine. It was adequate adequate is my goal. I don’t post about the fact that, you know, you’re constipated sometimes or the fact that I had a terrible night last night, I came home really cranky and Pissy over the traff. Iq in the city and I was playing in the ultimate frisbee championship game. And we lost championships pretty, you know it’s a championship in a league. So it’s not the end of the world, but I was I was Pissy. And so what did I say? You had you had a to I had about a two-day attitude, man. Terry crews. Right. Which is why I didn’t post on social media last night. And so this is the first step know that you’re comparing your regular life to less than one percent of someone else’s life. And then the second piece is jealousy is normal admit to it. Identify perhaps what you’re feeling. And can you identify? If you’re seeing something in somebody else’s life or on somebody else’s feed is something, they have that you want. Right. And is there anything you can do about it? If you see them and you, you know, they’re four inches taller than you or three inches shorter. There’s nothing you can do about that. But what’s that or face tune can’t you make yourself six feet taller than you actually are? Okay, yes, you can filter. Her. It up face Tunas an app that allows you to morph your body into anything, you know, I could use face tuned to make me look like Brandon vice versa. But in real life, there’s nothing you can do about that. But if they are working on a really cool project, and you are jealous that you haven’t had time or you haven’t had the motivation or the follow through. I think it’s a good reminder that jealousy can help you to feel inspired. So when it comes to what you see on social media calculated comparisons, can actually be useful, as long as you realize that again, social media is just one depiction of a multifaceted life or relationship, but you can learn from other people. So, for example, maybe you follow someone who really prioritises health and fitness, and maybe it motivates you to do the same or maybe you follow a couple who travels and you use their tanneries as inspiration for your next trip. And so I think it’s important to remember that experiences of normative jealousy can be helpful if they help you to recognize what you want. And how you can maybe adjust your thoughts or adjust your behavior to find more for film. And you brought this up recently during a discussion where you highlighted who following because if you’re following in your. Seeing photos of people that inspire you. It’s going to help with, you know how you respond is going to inspire you to act or do whatever it is in that positive direction. Whereas if you’re just going on and seeing things that bother you either make a conscious decision to reflect on Wyatt’s bothering you or don’t pay attention to, like I used to do that, where I think I would see what other people were doing get irritated that. I’m not doing it and it’s a reflection of how I feel about my own either inactivity or stagnation. And I realized that, that point I’m not gonna let a bother me. This is just how I responded, I’m not gonna let it bother me. I’m going to focus on what I need to do personally, professionally to feel great.

00:10:04 – 00:15:20

And but even recently changing the people that I follow me too big difference. I don’t know who to credit for this term, but I can I can look it up. They use the term digital diet change your digital diet, so shift up who you’re following don’t just follow. People who you know, are one type of way or who look a certain way, make sure even when it comes to your body image that you’re looking at all sorts of beautiful images, not just a one dimensional portrayal of what beauty can be. And so when we’re talking about jealousy once you’ve acknowledged that you’re jealous, you can examine why you’re feeling it and what you can do about it. So what shifts can you make to learn from the feeling? How can you use feelings of jealousy to look at what you feel you’re missing or make changes or in some cases, except your circumstances, because you can’t change everything? So if you feel jealous, because somebody else has financial success that you don’t have maybe you can take steps to improve your own confidence or make adjustments in your own finances. And I want to knowledge that not everybody has the same opportunity. It’s not like you can look at what I’m doing a necessarily do exactly what I’m doing and get the same result because I probably have some advantages over many people just like other people have advantages over me. Although I’m pretty I know how lucky I am. I know how much privilege I live with. And I think the other pieces look at least to build your confidence overall if you admire covet something somebody else has what can you do to embody this in your own life? You can’t have everything they have. But you can again change the way you think and change behavior right now. And then Finally, I wanted to just Chuck briefly about envy, you know, envy, often refers to negative, emotions actually directed at other people. So when you begin to feel resentful or malevolent whereas jealousy tends to refer to longing for something that somebody else has. So if you’re feeling envious, that’s when you really wanna work to address the underlying jealousy because it’s exhausting to live your life, directing anger, and resentment levels. At other people you can’t really survive, it, it wears on the body and the mind in the spirit. If you believe in soul so onion, leave you just with the reminder that you might also want to consider the evidence that supports your jealousy, should you really feel jealous or is it more of a, an emotional response that isn’t as rational as it could be not that an emotional responses inevitably irrational? So if a friend came to you with the same problem and feelings, what would you say, right? Are they really being realistic? Or do you have a great life as well? Group is point. Also, you can follow dog accounts, just follow dogs and animals awesome. That, though, that lifts your mood that might not live someone else’s juice me. Yeah. All the people in our lives love dogs. If you want go on Brennan’s search page on Instagram. It is nothing but dogs just look dogs. That’s it. It’s awesome. You feel jealous dogs fool jealous. Immune makes me feel a little sad, but also happy, yet does. So let’s, let’s move onto another question. This person wants to know questions like this all the time. How do I get over? My ex it has been three months, and I feel like I’m not any better than I was the day after we broke up and I’m sorry. I know this sucks break-up suck waiting for the time to pass sucks. But I do wanna challenge you and ask. You are you following them on social media, because it is really difficult to get over something. If there. Still a considerable part of your live life and social media as a part of your life. So can you take a social media break rather than you don’t have to cut them off forever? But, you know, can you try not keep tabs? Can you try not post about them and again remembering that everything you see on social media’s curated, and then a couple other kind of I guess, I don’t wanna say quick fixes because it’s not going to be a quick fix but can you change your daily routine? Because sometimes the hurt is part of a break-up isn’t the loss, only of companionship, which, of course, is difficult, but the major shift in your practical routine. So, for example, did you used to go for coffee together every morning on the way to work? So can you find a new morning ritual with a friend, or a coworker or neighbor or on your own, so that you don’t find yourself in the coffee shop reminiscing about the time you spent together kind of soaking in your morning, high? And, you know, the longer you are in the relationship, the more ingrained those behalf. And habits become. But you really can break these patterns almost immediately by making conscious decisions to change. Small daily habits one at a time. So a challenge you today, or tomorrow to pick something that perhaps was part of your relationship routine, and break, it do something entirely different, and then the other pieces, we’re often focused on moving on to meet someone else, but I think after a up, it’s a good time to just try something new without the goal of meeting partner.

00:15:20 – 00:20:01

And this can really boost your self esteem, and rather than just focusing on the relationship, try something that’s new and challenging, maybe book yourself into a workshop or a session, or a class pay in advance, so that you have to go, whether it’s a dance class or like an Indian cooking class, or a rock climbing session, or I don’t know what are people’s other interests languages. New course music laurel arrangement forced bathing going back there today. Yes. Oh, can you try something new without the goal? It’s not that you’re going to this group to meet a partner. But hopefully you meet new people and it just expands your network. So those are kind of my three approaches take a social media break change something about your daily routine and try something new new and something that may be makes you a little bit uncomfortable losing anything anyone is difficult. And I think we had this advice in the past when I’ve experienced that, but going through it just sucks, like you said and time heals, but I think diving into a new challenge would be a way to shift your mindset away from the focal, the focal point being your partner and how you’re no longer with them. So, yeah, I wish you. Well, I hope. That it gets better and it will have course against her own. Yeah. And people say that, oh, it takes time. And, you know, I’m guessing maybe this is one of your first breakup, but after one or two use start to realize that it really is just time that heels. And more questions. I wanna power through as many as we can this person says, I’m getting married and I’ve got exiled over my wedding. It’s not about getting married, but I find that I’m just really stressed about the wedding itself with all the work and all of the planning, and I heard, you guys talk about the fact that your wedding wasn’t stressful. So how do I reduce the stress and the executive in, in this wedding planning? So I mean I you know, a little bit of exiled, he can be a good thing because it indicates that you care, and we experiencing Zaidi in part to help us perform at our optimal. But of course, your wedding day is in a performance you wanted to be an enjoyable experience. So really you probably want to look at the source of your anxiety, and I’m gonna say this said it before I’ll say it again. I think you should stop planning your wedding in instead plan your marriage. So whatever time you are dedicating to this wedding, please divert. Twenty percent of it, twenty five percent of it of your time and money, whatever’s going into the wedding take twenty percent of it out and invest in your relationship. So this might be involved going to premarital counseling just to talk about what lies ahead. It might just be taking time together to hang and not talk about the wedding. Maybe you go take a course, for example, if you’re going to Greece on your honeymoon go take a Greek a crash course in the Greek language if you’re going to Spain go study Spanish, go to a health spa, take a tour of your own city. Take an unpaid day off work. You know, our emotional in our, I think our, intellectual resources are diverted when we’re planning a wedding, and also because there’s a big transition coming up, and it means that we have less time to invest in ourselves, and in our relationships, and if you’re planning a wedding, you’re probably experiencing some tension with other parties who involved, whether it’s your parents or their parents, or your wedding parties. So you’re. Patients can be really depleted. And you do not want to expend all of your energy on other people, and allow that tension and energy depletion to get misdirected in terms of the way you behave toward your partner. So please stop with a wedding and take a fifth of it a fifth or a quarter are eight of the time and financial resources and just hang with your partner spend time with your partner because we spend all this time planning for the wedding and not planning for the rest of your lives. And I know with many people the stress comes from disagreements about the wedding itself. So, for example, what do you spend what you buy help big is it who do you invite? And you know, it’s, it’s different because when you’re planning the wedding, you fight about the wedding. And when you’re in a marriage, you tend to argue about kids, sex, money, and housework. And I think one of the big mistakes we make with it. We assume that the tension around wedding planning will dissipate after the wedding and the opposite is true.

00:20:01 – 00:25:06

If you start to feel resentful. About money or family or division of labor during the wedding planning stage. These issues will only intensify if you don’t work out now. So I people don’t listen to me when I say this, they’re so hung up on their wedding planning and making sure that the, the cake icing is the right color and the napkins match the bows, on the back of the chair and, you know, they’ve got the right videography and they’re getting the right angles. And none of that will matter. If you don’t take care of the relationship I reflect back on our wedding. I can say that it was slightly stressful but not very stressful. And I think they’re two reasons that I felt that we number one is the I am not wearing this with a with any degree of pride. Or it’s not a badge of honor. I didn’t do much for our wedding either. Did I more than I did? And we certainly again, I wish I had been more involved. I also think it was a little bit oblivious, as to what needed to be done. But I do feel that we had a good foundation before we I mean, I was the one that wanted to get. Married. Yes. That’s true. I didn’t you didn’t. I wanted to have a party you wanted to have party. I wanted a formal will not a formal, but I wanted the ceremony. And now I’m indifferent as to whether or not, we had that or not gone to city hall, but, I didn’t know what the wedding involved and now I see everyone and how much there’s the all the party’s leading up to it all the different people who have a CEO as to what’s being spent who’s invited. You can see how all of this conflict can arise and it just seems like if you’re not constantly communicating with your partner about what’s working, what’s not why you’re irritated. Why you got a bad attitude? While you got a bad a tude that day, the resentment grows and then post wedding when everyone thinks that marital bliss will begin and continue for the rest of your lives. You have this. This carryover. Yeah. The hanging over your head. Yeah. I’ll tell you running. You say you didn’t do much for our wedding. I don’t feel. I did much. I think this comes back to our support system, and I posted about this on Instagram the other day, and I don’t know if I’ve spoken about this briefly on the podcast, but I was on my flight home from somewhere couple months ago. And I sat next to this guy, and he was a big business guy in Canada businessman. He’s not a businessman. He’s a businessman. And he you know, we just got to talking, casually than had mentioned Brennan was picking me up at the airport. And he said, wow, he’s coming to get you during rush hour. I said, yeah, he you know what he always does and said, we, you know, we actually gonna go to my mom’s and have dinner and he said any, we got to talking, and he said, you have an incredible support system because he was asking me how I how I manage the trouble how a manage the time how I have so much energy how I can land and give three speeches in a night and it really is only because I have these people who tend to my garden. So this Instagram post was talking about a literal, or figurative garden and not only does my mom, do my actual garden in my house, ’cause it would be just weeds without her. But my mom does a lot to support us in. You do a lot to support me. And my neighbors been do Shelley and other folks offer so much support. And I think if I look back to our wedding Helen ago, is it nine thirteen years ago? Thirteen years ago. It was my aunt failure who brought the or kids to go on the tables. It was Mike and Denise my cousins who carried everything down from Florida to get it down to Jamaica for me as well as d it was anti-gay who helps out and did all the flowers. It was my mom and Luigi, who were behind the scenes, making sure that, you know, the Paracels in the fans and everything got to the people will tell you, I didn’t think of any of it, and it’s partly because we were a little bit young and had never produced in event before. I think it’s also because we’re we’re a little chill, but I think the biggest pieces that were so used to having so much support. And we’re so fortunate to I when I posted that post I said to Brennan, does it seem braggadocious? Is it seem like I’m saying, I have the best network. I think I’m just really lucky. And I hope that I give back to all these people that I just named in a similar way or a in a way that says meaningful to them, as they they’re gestures and their support is to me, and I think. That’s really what, what makes life so great. Yes, I’m really happy in life, and I have a cool job and have a nice husband we’ve life. But it really is the people in our lives that give so much, not just emotional support, practical support. And I do, of course, hope it’s a two way street that I’m giving as much as I’m taking over the course of a lifetime. I think you are a no that you are going back to the question about the wedding and the investment. I couldn’t agree more with you. I see these people, excuse me jumping into relationships and focusing so heavily spending thousands, tens hundreds of thousands of dollars on this single day.

00:25:07 – 00:30:03

Assuming or the way, I interpreted is the belief that if this day goes perfectly the rest of my life will follow suit. And I look at it, and I think to myself, have you had some of these conversations with your partner about the things that you’ve commented on before about money or family? Or sex or kids or career, those are the important things to do when you’re planning for marriage. It’s not really about the food or the decor, the music those things are fun. Of course, you on the party to good, you know, I love good party. I love good party. But if the party was a disaster, if something went wrong. I mean a bunch of things went wrong in our wedding. I mean I remember like they didn’t bring out the grill and they, they were supposed to grill the meat fresh and they didn’t they just put it out. And then we had a cigar roller and they started charging my guest for cigars. I mean, I remember it this many years later, but I was able to rectify it. They set up the tent in the wrong place. My wedding planner didn’t come because it rains. But that’s normal in Jamaica. I thought it was ridiculous at the time. But then the more you learn about the infrastructure of a place like Jamaica. So you know she didn’t have a car in the us what we call robo taxis to get around. Meaning they’re just people who drive through the neighborhoods, and the roads are flooded out right the roads, the gullies overflow. So she couldn’t get there. So the wedding planner didn’t come the. That was in the wrong spot. They told us we had to close our early. The lamb was not the lamb was overcooked the somehow my guess ended up having to shell out cash to get cigars, give them their money back. Yeah. And somehow the marriage worked out. Despite all of these wedding day, gaffes the one piece of advice that was given that day was that this is a great day stuff’s gonna go wrong. But just enjoy the moment, who told you that it was James who’s that? Diane Diana, Jane. Oh, sorry. We have a really big family. So there are many James is in the names. I don’t even know if he remembers this, but he was the one that kind of pulled me aside and just said, if you do this rate, you’re going to do it once and stuff is gonna go wrong. But just enjoy the day, enjoy the moment. And I did. And that’s the only piece of insight if somebody asks that I share with them about your wedding. Daze stuff’s gonna go wrong. It’s not the end of the world and to be fair chains. Who married my cousin? Diane, they were married in Jamaica, two years before us. And we basically just muddled our wedding after their. Probably knew this stuff was going to go wrong as it does with every wedding. Yes. And there’s I think was even bigger than ours. We only had about one hundred people, I remember his wedding or their wedding and some people at late at night. Stripping down to almost nothing and running into the water me. I still have a bruise on my foot because we went it was pitch dark. I didn’t actually strip down the guys strip down, but we ran into the water and you’re running, and there are rocks, of course, on the bottom, and, you know, when you get a bruise that never heals, this is two thousand four I feel like my foot has never been the same although Varsha Mykhailo practical would say that all the problems come from my heels. Absolutely. They do rut, you constantly constantly, walk around five inch Hugh. He’ll call instantly walk. I’m barefoot right now. I wear heels at events and we call them sitting shoes. So if you ever see me on TV and high heels, the truth, is that I literally carried them to set showed up in flop. And I just put him on for the shot it’s all smoke and mirrors. Anyhow, if you’re getting married. Congratulations. I really hope you enjoy the day and really prepare for the marriage because that’s what it’s all about, right? It’s all about I, I don’t have kids, but I make jokes. Okay. I wanna get some one more question. And so moving from somebody who is new to marriage to a couple who has been together for a while. And she says my husband and I are going through a rough patch and it feels like we’ve been fighting for years we barely even touch anymore. And we ended up having a heart to heart last week, and we agreed to spend the full weekend together next weekend when he comes back into town. He works over five hundred miles away. We want to take this time to be connect. It’s actually our tenure anniversary, but we aren’t sure where to begin especially with the healing. So this one’s a bit longer. Some leave it at that. I mean I it’s important to remember that you’re not gonna you’re not going to heal your. Of hurt and resentment in one weekend, but you really can begin one day at a time. So if you’re struggling in your relationship, I always think it can be helpful to formally take stock of what you appreciate in value and Meyer about your partner, and your relationships.

00:30:03 – 00:35:07

So can you actually write down make a list of why you care about them why you admire them? What is going? Well, what do you love about them? And so you can consider even elements from the past because even if you’re not feeling it right? At this moment, it’s still exists right there and John Godman. For example, often talks about the fact that if you can still recall fund memories. It’s a good sign. Whereas if you go back to happy moments in time, and all you recall, for example, your wedding day, all you recall, is that the lamb was overcooked. Then, you know, that’s when you’re in trouble now got men’s research can be really useful. He’s got a great. Framework for relationships that very marketable some of his research is super problematic, in my opinion and insufficient. And when you ask for the data comes from his lab, but it’s not necessarily peer reviewed. So I do caution you to take some of it with a grain of salt. But I do think it’s important to think back to those happy memories. And, and if you can, that’s a really good sign, and this park partially. A practice and expression of gratitude. Right in, and we know that the practice of gratitude is associated with more likability, higher self esteem, lower stress levels, more compassion and couples who practise gratitude are simply happier in their relationships, they feel closer. So it’s worth starting today. And once you have your list, let’s call it a gratitude list. You know, maybe you share it with your partner, and maybe you commit to big inning each day for the next week with a reminder of one thing that you love about your partner, one thing that you’re grateful for, and you might take a moment to reflect on your own or you might talk to yourself in the mirror. You might write it down as a reminder, but I think if you have the weekend together, you’re not gonna spend the whole weekend, formerly investing in your relationship. I think this is a nice way to start. And you can spend some time doing this over breakfast, one day or you can come prepared you know, you can do this in advance and I also. To add, you’re going through a rough patch when it comes to sex, you said you, haven’t you barely touch anymore. I don’t know what that means with regard to sex, but don’t feel pressured to have the hottest tenure anniversary sex ever. I say instead, just see if you can reach out and touch one another in non sexual ways. So if you’re driving can you hold hands in the car? If you’re watching a movie, can you snuggle up a little supplies? Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to fix everything in one day or one weekend. Instead, just use the time to try and remember the happier times and recall some of those feelings and see how those feelings fit into the present because you can’t recreate what you had, but you can create a new version, and it can be even better your couple of group points, the idea, I think expectations is huge. If you’ve been having years, or prolonged period of time that you go through a rough patch, the idea that you’re going to go away for this tenure anniversary and have. A mind blowing weekend of connective and you’re gonna come back. New couple, I don’t think is, necessarily realistic whereas doing a thinking about what you want the outcome to be and being realistic with that. Oh, come may be a more positive approach to that. We can like we’re not gonna have the, you know, the most mind blowing sex, but we’re going to just simply like success would be feeling better about touch after the weekend or something. Like, I’m gonna make an effort to hold hands more often or I don’t know whatever something along those lines so that you are not disappointed when you come back in, you didn’t have the best weekend of your life. Yeah. That’s a good point at even the language of success has become so one dimensional. Right. So when we say he’s very successful, we tend to be talking about money when we talk about, you know relation. Ship being successful. We often talk about just staying together. Right. And we know that there are people who are together, but it’s not really a successful relationship, and we know people who have split up, and it was a successful relationship. Sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself and for your partner and for your relationship is to not be together in a committed intimate way and sexual success is usually like mind, blowing orgasms, or a whole bunch of orgasms coming at the same time and all of those. Standards or goals really detract from what we’re looking for, which is a pleasurable oftentimes connected experience. So I think that’s a good piece to add that, you know, adjust your expectations so that they’re a little bit more realistic. You can really enjoy your time together without being goal oriented, the other thing that I’ve found difficult when you and I have been in arguments is a willingness to try.

00:35:07 – 00:40:03

I feel like there may be some posturing, who’s gonna make the who’s going to extend their arm. I right. Who’s gonna make the first move to be more. Intimate, or who’s gonna make that first move to try and initiate conversation when it’s awkward, and that I move often isn’t about being intimate or being physical. It really is about being vulnerable that. Yeah. That’s what I was gonna say who’s willing to be a little bit vulnerable. I because when you’ve expressed some vulnerability to me if we’re having an argument and then you tell me I feel this way because of this or something along those lines immediately, the walls come down for me. And it I will do a one eighty in terms of how I’m responding to you on the spot because all of a sudden, you’ve told me how you feel. And I’m empathizing with that, and it really helps me change the trajectory of the conversation or whatever it is were doing so my opinion on what I’ve done is just be willing to make that first effort. I think there’s a line that goes a long way. And maybe my language isn’t your language. But the way I see it is, if you say or express, in some terms, I really wanna work on this. I think it breaks down barriers. I think it helps you both to become disarmed and acknowledged that this is going to be a bit vulnerable. So even when I’m so mad at you and I’ve talked about the fact before that I get so riled up, and I can get lost in the moment. I can forget the big picture. I can just be so focused on, on either being right. Or on. Demonstrating something to you, or even teaching you a lesson, which I know sounds really condescending. But in the moment, that’s how I how I get. And I remind myself just to say those words, not only for you. But for myself to say, listen, I really wanna work on this. And sometimes it says, I, I actually say, like I’m so pissed at you. I can’t believe you did this and I really wanna work on this. So that’s my line. That doesn’t mean that it needs to be your line. But I find that, that works for me as a reminder, but also helps to remind you that I’m still in this because I do think you have a little bit of a fear when we get upset at each other that I’m not as committed as you are. Do have that fear. I still have that fear in, it’s hard to break habits in it’s hard to break the way your mind works. And I think part of the problem is that I can be an all or nothing person. So that cognitive distortion of all or nothing thinking I bring it into the relationship, especially during times of argument intention, and so that only fuels your fear. So it’s not I don’t know that it’s necessarily something you brought in, I’m sure it’s something that I’ve had helped to, cultivate, and I have to help to dismantle, but also modeled behavior that I had growing up, and I’m not faulting my parents for this, but I’m silent. The way the way that I saw the arguments on Ravel. I eventually get to the point where I’ve. I I’ve taken enough, if you will, and then I blow a gasket and I had to change that in call myself out. And that was a really hard thing to learn to do it, and I still struggle with it, but the empathy the vulnerability component. When you tell me I feel this way or I’m really hurt. Or this is this, I’m hurting because of this all of a sudden it changes it gives me more room in the tank before I blow up and I’m aware of it, and I have to work on it. And there are some techniques like that, that definitely helps so be willing to, to be the first to take that step. So, you know, we wish you a happy tenure university in hope that it’s a good weekend away, and that you get something really like something positive out of it. Whatever it may be. And again, no pressure to fix everything in one weekend. Sometimes it’s not a specific moment in time or a specific incident or a specific. Con. Sation that functions as a turning point it sometimes as a little bit more gradual and a little bit more nuanced than that. So happy anniversary. I hope you have a great one. We’re gonna stop there and I really appreciate all of your questions. Please. Keep sending them in because the topics that you come up with are often more interesting to me than the topics I can come up with so really appreciate that. Follow us online at sex with Dr Jess at Verity, Brandon and make sure you check out at desire experience. We’re going to be heading out on a cruise with them in September or prepping for that. And we are we’re going some really cool places. We’re going to my orca we’re going to we’re going to pheno. We’re going to Valencia which is beautiful Barcelona.

00:40:03 – 00:40:33

And they have a number of cruises. So make sure your check them out. Thank you so much for listening. Thanks for being here, Brandon if you like this podcast. Please subscribe, and if you wanna show your support, we’d certainly appreciate any reach rates. En- shares as well as reviews online, they really help. So thank you again, have an amazing week wherever you are. You’re listening to the sex with Dr Jess podcast improve your sex life improve your life.