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Should I Stay or Should I Go Now?

 

Many clients call and have concerns because their relationships are not “perfect”, and some may be striving for the “next level” and frustrated with what they perceive as a lack of progress. 

Perhaps they have been dating the same gentleman for 2 years and he has not yet proposed, or perhaps they are living together and he has not yet asked for marriage, or perhaps they are casually dating and he has not yet asked to be “exclusive” or defined the relationship at a level they are satisfied with, i.e. significant other.

Well, let me start by telling you that as an Advisor here on Keen.com, it would be totally unethical and unprofessional for me to tell you WHAT to do.  The best counsel I can offer you is what you can expect given your current path and what changes you would need to make if you are dissatisfied with the outcome.  The rest is up to you, your free will will define the course as you move forward.  If you like the outcome, of course, you are going to stay on that same path working toward that goal.  If you do not like the outcome, we can look at what (if anything) you can do to change that particular outcome……and work from there.

One of the primary reasons that progress slows in relationships prior to establishing the “next level” of commitment, no matter what step of the relationship ladder you are on, is the imbalance of masculine and feminine energies within a pairing.  Please read my blogs on the subject matter for further information.  Click here for some insight into the masculine and feminine energie of your situation:  Are You a Masculine or Feminine Energy Person?

In order to prevent copyright infringement, this blog has been condensed to an excerpt as it currently appears in Brigid's book "The Dating Game, Insights Into Affairs of The Heart" releasing in April 2010 and available at Amazon and fine book sellers everywhere.  Ask for it by name!

 

Copyright © 2007 Brigid Bishop

This content may not be copied or reproduced in any way without the express written permission of the author.  You are welcome to link to or bookmark this page, but please contact the author via Keen Mail if you wish to reproduce this article in whole or in part. 

 

Visit Brigid Bishop

Ok, this one is for the girls, women, divas, ladies out there.........especially those who are experiencing "Relationship Issues" and looking for some insight into what is causing these issues to arise.  This should prove useful to the men among our readership as well, as the male can be either a masculine or feminine Primary Energy as well, so I guess this is for just about anyone examining their relationship!

In all relationships there needs to be balance.  In all relationships there are multiple energies flowing.  One of the core energies in any romantic relationship is the anima/animus, the yin and yang, the masculine and feminine energies.

How do you know which energy is your Primary Energy?

First, let us examine what you want and expect from a relationship.

Do you want to feel a sense of  your partner being on your side, a sense of inclusiveness, a sense of protection, a sense of your feelings being recognized and validated?

In order to prevent copyright infringement, this blog has been condensed to an excerpt as it currently appears in Brigid's book "The Dating Game, Insights Into Affairs of The Heart" releasing in April 2010 and available at Amazon and fine book sellers everywhere.  Ask for it by name!

Copyright © 2007 Brigid Bishop

Revision One © July 2009

This content may not be copied or reproduced in any way without the express written permission of the author. You are welcome to link to or bookmark this page, but please contact Brigid Bishop via Keen Mail if you wish to reproduce this article in whole or in part.


For further insight, Read "See Dick Run"

Closure is Not a Gift


At least once per day, usually much more frequently, I receive calls from clients asking about exes from whom they wish to be "given closure".

Sometimes it is a freshly broken relationship and quite understandable that they would like to have a logical and mature discussion with the ex as to why the relationship failed, in order to learn from the experience and begin the process of moving on.

There are some clients, however, who are looking to be "given closure" for situations and relationships that are ancient history, perhaps having ended many months or even years ago. These clients tend to be stuck, they are unable to move forward into new relationships, forgoing any opportunities for moving on by waiting and wondering if they will ever "get closure".

They focus on wondering if their ex partner ever thinks about them, how they feel about them, even when the ex partner is obviously involved with someone new! They live in constant anticipation, regardless of how much time has passed, of the old flame making contact and some how, some way, "giving" them the "closure" that they need to move forward.

This is not only unrealistic, it is down right unhealthy. I find that the clients who have this insatiable need for the "gift of closure" are harboring the hope that the ex will see what a mistake they made and return to the failed relationship.

Some actually believe that unless they are "given closure" the relationship still has a chance of resurrecting itself, even if years have gone by.

Closure is not something you are given. it is not a gift.

Yes, some relationships do end with some very clear and defined energies of closure, most have been very long-term and committed in nature, such as marriages and engagements where social expectations are high, but clear-cut closure is the exception in relationships, not the rule. Closure is something that you TAKE.

In most cases, closure is an experience that you go through alone, not with your ex, but alone.

How do you "take" your closure?

There are many ways to do so.

Closure is simply an acceptance that the relationship you once had is now over. You are no longer partners. You are once again two separate entities who are now free to look for a more compatible partner. Closure requires letting go. Some people "take" their closure once their ex becomes involved with a new love, some take their closure after a month or two of no contact and no attempted reconciliation occurs, some take their closure when they meet someone new and feel a true interest in moving forward with the new person, everyone is different.

The people who never receive closure are the people who sit around waiting for their ex to "give" it to them.  They surrender all of their power to an  ex who has most likely taken their own closure quite some time ago, waiting for that "gift of closure" that never comes, from an ex who is long gone.

If you would like closure to your situation, reach out and take it, that's the only way to get it. It's all about acceptance. Accept the change that has occurred, you are not half of a couple, you are an independent individual and you can move forward, you don't need your ex recounting all the reasons the relationship failed to you. Will hearing your ex say "It's not you it's me" or "We grew apart" or "We fought too much" or "I just don't want to be in a relationship right now" really make you feel better? Will it make any more sense to you?

Does knowing with a certainty exactly why your relationship failed make it any easier to move on?  Perhaps, but waiting months or years for a "gift" that never comes is just wasting your time and energy.  In my experience, those who have an actual "closure" discussion rarely find comfort in it, it leaves them trying to argue the point/counter points of the relationship with the ex rather than freeing them to move on.

Instead look at it this way, we had a relationship, it did not work, think of the positives and negatives of that particular partnership and learn from them. Take the good into your next experience and leave the bad behind. Take you closure and move on! The sooner you do, the happier you will be.


Copyright © 2010 Brigid Bishop


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When You Fall In Love With a Married Man

It isn't ever planned or well thought out, but women can and do fall in love with married men on a fairly regular basis. It is by no means an easy situation, and like it or not, someone is going to get hurt, that's just par for the course.

Do women go out with the intent to find themselves a married person to fall in love with? Of course not. Attraction, destiny, soul mate connections, current life circumstances, physical attraction, discontent with current relationship, they are all ingredients in the recipe for an affair.

Being the other woman requires you to take a step back and take a cold, hard, analytical look at the realities of your situation. There will be serious limitations and you should consider them thoroughly before embarking on an affair or continuing your affair with a married man.

It is entirely possible that someday he may leave his wife, however, you live in the present, not the future, and you have no guarantees that his marriage will end.

What you can expect when engaged in this type of relationships are a lot of spontaneous changes in your ability to see each other. Expect last minute rendezvous at the drop of a hat, but also expect that even your best laid plans are subject to last minute cancellations.

Expect to be spending all major holidays alone. He will be in the company of his family, which does include his wife and not with you. Unless you are well socialized, you can expect to be very lonely during these times.

You will need to keep your relationship discreet. You will be unable to share details of your relationship with friends and family as you would in a normal relationship. This can begin to have an isolating effect on you. You will never get to know his parents, his siblings, his children or his circle of friends unless he gets a divorce in the future, which again, is not where you are now. That part of his life will be compartmentalized away from you, where it is entirely possible that he is fully integrated into your life, creating a major imbalance.

You will truly be living in the shadow of his life.

The married male who is seeking companionship outside of his primary relationship, (his marriage), may be a male who has absolutely no intention of divorcing his wife. It is possible that he does project himself into a divorce, however, he may have reasons that lead him to believe that the timing of a divorce is just not right for him at present.

The question you must ask yourself is, what kind of a relationship to you really want?

Has he ever stated to you that he is getting divorced? How much time are you willing to invest in waiting to see if he will end his marriage and move forward into a relationship with you? You need to be realistic, these situations can and do drag on for years. Set a time limit in your mind as to how long you are willing to wait on the sidelines keeping your own life on hold and stick to it.

Do you want a relationship that you don't have to hide? Do you want to be able to go out in public together without fear of discovery? Do you want to be able to introduce your partner to your friends and family and spend holidays and special occasions together? If these are things necessary to your happiness, you must take them into account when deciding whether to continue your affair or not.

Are you realistic in your expectations of how his current wife and any children he may have would react were your affair to be discovered? It is highly likely to be very unpleasant.

If you feel that you just cannot let go of your married partner and are willing to suffer through this uncomfortable situation, there are ways for you to cope.

Try to regain some balance in this totally unbalanced situation. Don't be ready to see him each and every time he can slip away because he suddenly is available unexpectedly. Although you may be tempted to take advantage of sharing that special, limited time with him, you will not allow this to occur as it shows him that he is your number one priority, although you are not his primary concern.

Never forget that these types of relationship contain high levels of romance and drama just by their very nature, whether real or imagined, this is so. Grand gestures and excessive professions of love are not unusual in these affairs. Why? Because he well knows that you are in a precarious position by being involved in him and he has to make it seem worth your while. Don't take everything he says at face value. Married men who have girlfriends lie. This is a cold hard fact. There is no way for him to maintain two honest and open relationships in this situation (unless he is part of an open marriage agreement, which is rare). If he is lying to his spouse, do not think for even one second that he is not lying to you as well.

The biggest and most common lie that married men who cheat utilize is that they no longer are sexually active with their wives. Many will even claim to have separate sleeping quarters, Don't believe that lie even for one fleeting second. If he is still married to her and they are still living under the same roof and she has no idea that your relationship exists, he is still sleeping in the same bed with her.

With that in mind, the biggest mistake a woman in this position makes is being exclusive to the married male in question. Until he files for divorce, a woman in this predicament would be wise to continue to date single and available men concurrently. The best remedy is to walk away from the married man and tell him to look you up after his divorce, but if you simply can't, don't limit yourself to being his woman on the side, continue to investigate other relationship options. If you can't bring yourself to do so, you are going to be very lonely at times.

Exercise caution in sharing information about your affair. People love scandal and gossip, and a secret is only a secret when only one person knows about it. Many, even close friends, will judge you harshly for dating a married man, so be extremely cautious about whom you discuss your situation with.

Set a definitive time limit for your affair.

Unless you want to spend decades as the other woman, as Katherine Hepburn did, only to have the married man you love die married to his wife, bring up the discussion of divorce early on in your affair.

If he does not give you an explicit time frame, you should leave him, this indicates he truly has no intention of divorcing.

If he informs you that he is waiting for his children to finish high school, seriously consider their current ages, if they are still very young, walk away. If you were to continue your involvement with him throughout their primary, middle school and high school education, what motivation would he have to leave his marriage if you were still with him?

In all of this, you must also ponder how he speaks of his current wife.

Are his references to her respectful and honest and definitive of why he no longer feels he wants to be married to her? If this is the case, he respects women and is probably being honest about how the marriage went wrong.

If, on the other hand, he runs her down and blames the failure of the marriage solely on her you need to be extremely careful. This may make you temporarily feel secure because it convinces you that he is no longer in love with his wife, but, consider that someday you may be in her shoes and would you like to hear him speak of you in that manner?

Remember, these relationships are full of drama and deception, he has to keep you feeling like your stifled relationship is worth it, and he will lie to do so.

It is a volatile and potentially painful situation you are in. You could very likely have your heart broken. He may stay married permanently. It does happen. Remember Katherine Hepburn. You could potentially spend years in the shadows of his life loving him and hoping for change only to find, in the end, all of your love was in vain.

It is best to avoid the situation altogether if possible, but if you find yourself in this predicament, you are not alone. There are situations like these that do work out, contrary to popular conjecture, each situation is unique, but you must assess the emotional risks you are undertaking and be realistic about them if at all possible.

The Dating Game: Are You a Masculine or Feminine Energy Female?

Explore Your Natural Tendencies.

Ok, this one is for the girls, women, divas, ladies out there.........especially those who are experiencing "Relationship Issues" and looking for some insight into what is causing these issues to arise.  This should prove useful to the men among our readership as well, as the male can be either a masculine or feminine Primary Energy as well, so I guess this is for just about anyone examining their relationship!

In all relationships there needs to be balance.  In all relationships there are multiple energies flowing.  One of the core energies in any romantic relationship is the anima/animus, the yin and yang, the masculine and feminine energies.

How do you know which energy is your Primary Energy?

First, let us examine what you want and expect from a relationship.

Do you want to feel a sense of  your partner being on your side, a sense of inclusiveness, a sense of protection, a sense of your feelings being recognized and validated?  Do you want to express yourself in terms of how you feel?  Is it important to you that your feelings are being considered?  Do you tend to look at things in terms of what you "Don't Want" instead of what you "Want".

This is a very simplistic boil down to a feminine energy being.

If, on the other hand you wish primarily for your partner to respect you, leave everything up to you, if you wish to have control over your relationship, the pace it grows at, the things that you do as a couple, the social circle you frequent, and more than anything you want your partner to look at you as a competent individual and you feel it is of primary importance that your partner respects your thoughts on any given subject and trusts you to make the right choices and you look at life in terms of what you "Want" rather than what you "Don't Want", then your primary energy is that of a male energy being.

Everyone is a mixture of both.

Which are you letting show to your partner or your current interest?

At the beginning of any relationship you are defining your primary energy and you are setting the tone for the life of the relationship.

If you are a Feminine Female then you want your partner to consider your feelings, so you must express yourself in terms of "I feel" and "I don't want....".  The feminine energy, like the Suit of Cups in Tarot is Passive and Receptive which means, if you want your feelings validated and considered you need to take a passive and receptive approach to your relationship.  Being a Feminine Female makes a Masculine Energy Male the correct "type" for you.  This is the man who wants to be respected and trusted and wants you to think him capable and competent.

For instance, if it is the beginning of getting to know a guy and he fails to call you within what you think is a comfortable amount of time you DO NOT pick up the phone and call or text him (or email him).  You wait it out.  It is uncomfortable, but that is what you do.  When the gentleman does call, your proper response as the feminine energy is something like this, "Oh, hi, I was feeling kind of disappointed when you didn't call me, I don't want to be assuming we connected if we didn't.  I'm glad to hear from you.  What's up?"  Your role in assuming your feminine energy role is to simply and passively reject or accept his behaviour.  Nothing more, nothing less.  By expressing how you feel you are putting your femininity out there for him to nurture.

This notifies the male that your feelings are important to you and his behaviour caused you to feel a little insecure, and a masculine energy male will "step up" and validate those feelings for you, without you doing a thing more.  He now knows what you don't want, and will try his best not to disappoint you again in order to gain your trust.

Now, if you are a Masculine Female and you find yourself on the waiting end of a telephone line, it is an entirely different scenario.  First of all, your match is a Feminine Energy Male.  These males tend to be the dreamy, creative type, not the traditional male.  They frequently are artists, writers, carpenters, creators in some way.  The Masculine Female wants her thoughts and opinions considered first, before her feelings, she is a "take-charge" kind of girl.  She knows what she wants and she goes after it.  The Feminine Male is the passive one.  He wants his feelings validated.  Although outwardly, he may be very masculine in appearance, his Primary Energy is feminine, which means, the woman is the one actively "in charge" of the relationship.

In this case, the woman should pick up the phone and give him a ring and invite him out, something like this, "I think we really should get together soon.  How's Friday night for wings for you?".  It's role reversal and it will work for the energies if you are both in your Natural Primary Energy roles.

Ok, so now you know you want to be the feminine energy, you feel it, and you believe that the man you are interested in is a masculine energy male.  You've started out okay, but now he is not initiating.  What do you do?

Nothing.

Sorry girls, but the moment you pick up that phone and call that masculine energy guy you are delaying any kind of commitment or progress by months, possibly years.

The conundrum you inadvertently create is that now you have two masculine energies interacting, you have "effeminized" yourself.  Now that man you are interested in thinks that your feelings do not need to be validated.  You are now "one of the guys" and fair game to ignore your feelings and not cherish them.  Is this what you want?  If you are truly a feminine energy woman, NO, you do not.

I don't know if this makes any sense to you at all, but it boils down to the very arcane (yet true) fact that men are hunters.  If they don't need to pursue you, they will simply take it for granted that you will be available to them whenever they are in the mood for your company.  They will not nurture the connection along, so ladies, PATIENCE is a virtue afterall!

If you are unsure of which energy role you have assumed or if you feel that you may have "messed up" a bit, give me a call and we can take a look at where your situation is at and I can assist you in getting it "back on track".

 

More on this, and the different ways masculine and feminine energies communicate and view sex and life in general in the next installment of "The Dating Game".

Brigid Bishop

Copyright © 2007 Brigid Bishop

This content may not be copied or reproduced in any way without the express written permission of the author.  You are welcome to link to or bookmark this page, but please contact the author via Keen Mail if you wish to reproduce this article in whole or in part.



 

For Further Insight, Read "See Dick Run"

 

Published Monday, April 02, 2007 10:51 PM by Brigid Bishop Edit
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Adolescent Media Usage and (Romantic) Relationships

Social Media, defined as cell phone usage, text messaging, and social networking sites such as facebook, have made our culture one in which we have immediate access to communicating with each other on a 24/7 basis. During adolescence, dating occurs while youth are experimenting and learning how to balance needs for autonomy with relatedness, (Sullivan, Erwin, Helms, Masho, & Farrell, 2012), social media allows for interconnection at a level that is unprecedented in any culture to date.

In generations past, the adolescent had to delay the gratification of communicating with friends and romantic partners. In the past, it was usual and customary to refrain from calling a friends’ home after ten p.m., to speak with an adolescent cohort. Parents had some control over limiting communication, and were frequently within earshot of conversations, allowing for an awareness of what was occurring in an adolescent’s social life. It was often necessary to first engage with the friends’ parent and ask to speak with said friend.

In today’s world, the majority of adolescents have a direct line of communication through a personal cell phone. This allows direct communication without parental knowledge or supervision. Frequently there are no time limits or boundaries as to length of call, and the adolescent has the luxury of privacy during a phone call, as they can easily move out of earshot of the parent.

Text messaging allows for discreet immediate communication around the clock, even when the adolescent is seemingly focused on other tasks, such as schoolwork, a part-time job, or spending time with the parent and family.

Social networking sites provide access not only to communications, but also to immediate knowledge of what a friend or romantic partner is currently doing, where they are, and whom they are with.

I hypothesize that social media will have made access to partners a source of immediate gratification for adolescents, removing the need for them to develop a sense of delaying the gratification of contacting friends and romantic partners, perhaps limiting the autonomy of today’s youth. My second hypothesis is that due to the public availability of social networking sites, adolescent relationships are now a very public and communal experience, where in prior generations, interpersonal relationships at this stage of development afforded more privacy, and slower revelations of developments in those relationships.

Technology is becoming an extension of the self. There is currently no consensus on social etiquette in the use of social media. Variances in media ideologies, beliefs about media use, and structures of communication, vary from person to person, (Gershon, 2010).

Incorporating technology into the adolescent intimate relationship is the norm. Cell phone use increases social inclusion and connectedness, two psychological benefits, (Walsh, White, & Young, 2007). Facebook interactions have been associated positively with adolescents’ friendship quality and feelings of comradery. Two frequently reported reasons for using Facebook are seeking new relationships, and nurturing and maintaining existing relationships, (Yang & Brown, 2012). Teenagers use technology to initiate relationships, from flirtatious messages to nude texts, (King-Reis, 2011). Teens address the need for a romantic partner more freely and frequently in a virtual environment than they do in the “real” world. Females are more likely to initiate romantic connections on social networking sites, engaging in flirtatious behaviors with interested parties online, (Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 2008).

Adolescents have a stronger interest in using Facebook to maintain relationships, than to initiate new ones. Those who reported pursuit of new relationships as a primary cause for Facebook use reported a higher level of loneliness than those who were motivated to use the social networking site for relationship maintenance, (Yang & Brown, 2012). In the 2001 Pew Survey, only 17% of adolescents reported using instant messaging to ask someone out, (Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 2008). Initiating relationships through Facebook is not currently the adolescent norm, it is used to screen people they have met in real life as prospective dates, (Subrahmanyam & Greenfield, 2008). It appears that social media use of adolescents does not include beginning a romantic relationship as a primary function, but rather, maintaining these relationships, once they are established is primary.

Once a romantic relationship begins, Facebook can play an integral role in establishing it amongst the peer group. Adolescents use the “Relationship Status” feature when their romance goes public, the adolescent changes their status from “Single” to “In a Relationship”, they must enter the name of the person they are in this relationship with, and then that person must acknowledge the romantic entanglement. This makes adolescent relationships public knowledge to their network of friends at the click of a button, where in bygone generations, relationships gradually became public knowledge over time, as an adolescent couple was observed by their peer group. Today, this public changing of relationship status has assumed the social equivalent of “going steady”, which in years past may have been marked by an adolescent male giving his girlfriend his class ring to wear, (Gershon, 2010).

Teenagers use technology to remain in constant connectivity with their partners. In a study conducted by King-Reis, from after school until 10 p.m. 50% of teens reported calling or texting their partners, nearly 40% reported that they were in cell phone or text contact with their partners ten to thirty times per hour. Nearly 25% of teens reported contact between the hours of midnight and 5:00 a.m., with one in six admitting to a frequency of ten to thirty times an hour during this timeframe. Texting is the most frequent form of adolescent social media usage (King-Reis, 2011).

Free access to each other not only increases interrelatedness in youth, but also increases the opportunity for conflict to arise. Cell phones can be used for fighting through calls and texts. The constant availability to communicate with each other prevents the adolescent from having a cooling off period, limits their ability to step away from a situation, a teen will likely desire the immediate gratification of resolving the conflict in the “now”. Jealous partners use cell phones to monitor calls and texts to determine the extent and nature of communications with rivals (Sullivan, et al., 2010). One study found that 17% of teenagers reported that their partners made them afraid to be unresponsive or slow to respond to calls, emails, and texts out of fear of what their partner might do, (King-Reis, 2011).

“Fidelity management”, characterized by ongoing monitoring of dating partners’ activities and interactions with others through social media, is a key area of conflict in adolescent dating relationships (Sullivan, et al., 2010). The ability to be omnipresent in each others’ lives feeds feelings of jealousy and insecurity. In generations past, when a young couple was apart, it could well be “out of sight, out of mind” until the couple was in contact again. In present culture, there is very little ability for time spent truly apart, as at the flip of a switch or touch of a button, the adolescent can see exactly what their partner is doing, and whom they are doing it with. The AP/MTV study found that 25% of teenagers reported that their intimate partners have checked the text messages on their phone without permission, and 10% reported that their partners demand their electronic passwords, (King-Reis, 2011).

Breaking up is a painful process for the adolescent to go through, the media used to execute the break up shapes the ending of a relationship. In a study performed by Dr. Illana Gershon, adolescent research participants viewed text as the most casual form of communication and inappropriate for severing a relationship. These participants stated that email was a more formal form of communication, and compared it to receiving a letter in the U.S. Mail. Older participants felt that it was only appropriate to end a relationship in person. Abruptly ending a relationship in public on facebook by deleting a relationship status was the most painful and embarrassing breakup reported by participants, (Gershon, 2010).

Social media usage presents even more challenges and potential for embarrassment when a relationship ends. When adolescents break up, they generally change their Facebook relationship status from “In a Relationship” to “Single”. This status change appears immediately in Facebook newsfeeds and in the partners’ status updates. In years past, when an adolescent couple broke up, they generally shared it gradually with close friends, and peers acknowledged the breakup gradually through observations. Relationships ending in the public arena of Facebook are a significant portion of research by Dr. Gershon. She wrote of multiple examples of how couples managed making the dissolution public. Endings ranged from joint decisions to notify close friends and family first, to abrupt endings by one partner with no forewarning that completely severed all contact permanently, (Gershon, 2010).

All participants stated that they felt pain and discomfort to a greater degree due to how the breakup occurred rather than why it occurred. The less opportunity a former partner had for a question and answer exchange when the romantic partner communicated the intention to end the relationship, the more distress they reported, (Gershon, 2010).

Text message breakups were the most frustrating, according to Dr. Gershon, because there was no way to ascertain when a response to a termination was received, and allowed no inquiry. Breakup by instant message allowed for immediate interaction. Respondents stated immediate response capability equates to face-to-face communication, (Gershon, 2010).

Cell phone and internet usage can be used to harass past partners, the ability to block one’s number allows for anonymity, and youth may at times use these technologies to repeatedly call a former partner and hang up to simply annoy them. In some cases adolescents have reported turning off their phone or changing their number to avoid unwanted contact (Sullivan, et al., 2010).

The Clairborne study documented that adolescents do not typically share information about their technology interactions with partners with their parents. Seventy-two percent did not inform parents that their partners were actively engaging in fidelity management, 77% did not disclose that they were afraid to be unresponsive to media messages, and 78% did not report when a partner harassed or embarrassed them through social media, (King-Reis, 2011).

Reasons given for failure to inform parents included believing it was not a serious concern, fear of losing social media access should the parent find out about the negative activities, and fear that parents would forbid continuation of their relationship, (King-Reis, 2011).

The implications of adolescents failing to report negative social media interactions can be foreboding. Parents being unaware of adolescents experiencing harassment, cyber-stalking, and threats through social media puts them at risk of physical harm. The widespread acceptance of adolescents that their dating partners have total access to their lives at all times is causing an entire generation to normalize “boundarylessness”. This trend puts adolescents at risk for domestic violence, as for those who are inclined to become batterers, the omnipresence in a partners life provides ample opportunity to exert excessive control and begin attempting to isolate a partner. Several of the documented behaviors in the Clairborne study involved using information on social networking sites to harass or intimidate intimate partners, including spreading electronic rumors and posting embarrassing pictures of the partner. In contrast to the sense that domestic violence has been a private matter, these behaviors are public, and if they are not identified by the peer group as being inappropriate, the silence of the community can normalize this conduct, (King-Reis, 2011).

The findings of the literature reviewed lend credence to my first hypothesis. Adolescents are using social media to stay in nearly constant contact with each other. Boundaries are becoming blurred, today’s adolescent does not know how to spend time alone, but requires constant social interaction. Technological addictions develop when people become reliant on the technologies to provide psychological benefits, such as improving mood, as adolescents use social media more often to obtain pleasurable outcomes, excessive use leads to addiction, (Walsh, et al., 2008).

During a study conducted by Walsh, White, and Young, it was found that the unpleasant feelings associated with withdrawal occurred when adolescents were unable to use their social media devices. When participants were asked how they would feel if they had to give up social media for three days, the respondents indicated that they would feel extreme distress, (Walsh, et al., 2008), confirming how integrated social media usage is in the adolescent identity.

Codependent relationships are characterized by an obsessive need to control the behavior of a partner, an inability to establish and maintain boundaries, over involvement in the life of the partner, and an inability to be alone, (Beattie, 1992). Adolescent social media usage has all of the characteristics of the codependent relationship, the constant communication, the blurring of boundaries, the incessant need to share innocuous life events, and the immediate gratification of having a connection with the partner that may only be at rest when the adolescent is asleep. My first hypothesis appears to be confirmed based on the literature reviewed. Adolescents are experiencing the psychological gratification of feeling connected to their partners on a nearly uninterrupted basis. The long-term effects of social media usage may be creating a generation of codependents who will be incapable of autonomy unless society begins addressing these issues now. Combining the codependent climate of social media usage with the addictive qualities of these behaviors is laying a foundation for a generation of relationship addicts who are incapable of unplugging from their electronic worlds. Further research needs to be conducted in order to understand where this trend is taking our society, and to begin devising proactive measures to ensure social media usage does not interfere with the emergence of a psychologically and emotionally healthy adult population.

My second hypothesis appears to have been confirmed as well, as the public announcements of beginnings and endings of relationships through social networking sites has been documented as being the current adolescent norm. The “imaginary audience” of the adolescent is no longer imaginary, but a very real audience of peers, friends, and family, on social networking sites. How is this constant revelation of life developments affecting the current generation? Research needs to catch up to social media in order to understand what effects living your life virtually on a stage are having on our youth.

Additional research needs to be done on the abuse and misuse of social media. In the literature reviewed it was found that social media is used as a weapon by some adolescents. How the effects of abusing a partner through social media translate into adult behaviors and increase the risk of domestic violence is an area of much concern.

Parental awareness of adolescent social media experiences is lacking, adolescents who are having negative experiences through these channels are not receiving the support a parent can offer to learn how to cope with difficult situations. The adolescent is hiding these experiences from parents. Our youth could be experiencing emotional and psychological harm during a critical developmental stage in these areas. Further research into how this affects adolescent development and methods to increase parental awareness of social media experiences are critical to furthering healthy adolescent development.

My advice to the parent of an adolescent is to have a locked storage drawer in the house where cell phones must be placed during "downtime", as in after 10 p.m., to ensure you are aware of when your child is using the phone. It would also be wise to limit the amount of privacy afforded a teen when using their media, although you cannot see what they may be texting, monitoring the texts on occasion should be a guideline for agreeing to allow your adolescent to have a cell phone. We need to be actively aware of our children's social lives, the facts uncovered here provide more than ample evidence of the need for closer monitoring.  Remember as well, that our teens will be modeling the behavior of their parents, so check your own media usage as well, are you following these codependent patterns in your own usage?  Unplug yourself to set an example!

References

Beattie, Melody. (1992). Codependent no more: How to stop controlling others and start caring for yourself. San Francisco: Harper

Gershon, Illana. (2010). The breakup 2.0, disconnecting over new media. New York: Cornell University Press.

King-Ries, A. (2011). Teens, technology, and cyberstalking: The domestic violence wave of the future? Texas Journal of Women and the Law, 20, 131-164.

Subrahmanyam, K. & Greenfield, P. (2008). Online communication and adolescent relationships. The Future of Children, 18, 119-146.

Sullivan, T.N., Erwin, E. H., Helms, S.W., Masho, S.W., & Farrell, A.D. (2010). Problematic situations associated with dating experiences and relationships among urban African American Adolescents: a qualitative study. Journal of Primary Prevention, 31, 365-378. doi: 10.1007/s10935-010-0225-5

Walsh, S.P., White, K.M., & Young, R.M. (2008). Over-connected? A qualitative exploration of the relationship between australian youth and their mobile phones. Journal of Adolescence, 31, 77-92. doi: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2007.04.004

Yang, C.C. & Brown, B.B. (2013). Motives for using facebook, patterns of facebook activities, and late adolescents’ social adjustment to college. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 42, 403-416. doi: 10.1007/s10964-012-9836-x

Are You Being Lied To?

There are many ways to tell if someone is being dishonest with you and I am going to give you just a few tips that should help you separate out fact from fiction.

Eye Contact

There are two distinct traits used by someone who is trying to deceive you when it comes to maintaining eye contact. One is to avert the eyes away from yours, perhaps they focus on your mouth when they speak rather than your eyes, or they drop their eyes to the left or the right, this is a signal that they are not confident in their ploy and that they may be afraid of discovery.

The second trait is entirely the opposite, they go out of their way to maintain eye contact, the eyes are opened up just a little bit too wide, and they don’t blink. This is a tactic used by one who is used to being believed when being deceitful and they are the “more practice” liars among us. They believe the old adage that people do not look each other in the eye when being deceitful so they go out of their way to maintain the contact, because they are concentrating so hard on keeping the eye contact with you, they forget to blink!

Too Many Details

Everyone has events happen that may delay them or keep them away from time to time, but a classic tactic of the liar is to fill in so many details that you will be astounded by the richness of their story, after all, who would take the time to fabricate the color of the shirt their buddy was wearing and how he had a mustard stain on it???? It’s fabricating an alibi……….the more details, the more believable, so why would you double check? Usually these “details” are fragments based on fact, but if you get a six paragraph, detailed explanation of an event, something is up, (or covered up).

Outrageous Stories

Prevaricators tend to hold to the premise that the more details, or the more outrageous the story, the more likely it is to be true! After all, if a loose alligator in the state of Ohio showed up on their lawn, then traveled around the property snapping phone and power lines with its’ mighty jaws, and then coming to rest on the front porch blocking the only exit route, how on earth could they have called you when they said they would? They were trapped in their own home for God’s sake!!! Didn’t you see it on the local news??

Righteous Silence

OOOOOOH, this one is hard to spot, you must be very careful just in case it is a “righteous silence”, typically this is used early on in a relationship before any lies have been “caught”. When you question your subject, they take the stance of “I’m not even going to qualify that with a response”. Righteous silence lies are very difficult to root out, as, perhaps the subject truly was honest, but if the hints above preceded the righteous silence, well, then, you know that it is an act to manipulate you into believing their story. You usually find out that righteous silence lies were fabricated long after the lie is told because of the high risk of negative confrontation if the subject is actually being truthful. Keep your eyes open for this behavior, if it happens every single time you have an innocent question, the person who is being this self-defensive could well be telling you fibs.

Copyright © 2007 Brigid Bishop

This content may not be copied or reproduced in any way without the express written permission of the author. You are welcome to link to or bookmark this page, but please contact the author via Keen Mail if you wish to reproduce this article in whole or in part.  This is an excerpt from "The Dating Game:  Insights Into Affairs of The Heart" available at fine bookstores everywhere and also on Kindle!

Why do People Cheat?


Let’s start with women.

There is a misconception out there that men cheat more frequently than females.  In my personal observations I find this to be untrue.  I receive just as many calls from women who are being unfaithful to their husbands and significant others as I do from women who are involved with a man who is either married or seriously involved with another woman.

I do find that when women cheat, they are prone to cheat at a higher percentage due to dissatisfaction with the current primary relationship in hopes that the new lover will provide them with what is missing in that primary relationship.  More women than men seem to venture into cheating situations to find their next serious relationship.

Some women, a minority, cheat for the pure excitement and recreational sex, but these are women with very strong masculine energies.  They look at the extracurricular relationship as just that, and have no intentions of turning into a real relationship.

Personally, I believe that it is best (and healthiest), if you are looking for a new relationship, to end the primary relationship before becoming involved with a new lover, and this is simply to avoid the complications and obstacles that the cheating itself brings about.

When a man has a relationship with a woman outside of her marriage or primary relationship a lot of factors go into why he is doing it.  Of course, it is possible that he is falling in love and that he wants a relationship with you as much as you do with him, but, again, this is a rarity.

If the “Other Man” is single and fully unattached, he may want more with you, he may be one who wants you to end your primary relationship and launch a full-blown relationship with you.

How can you tell?

He will pressure you to leave your partner, he will ask you straight out “When are you going to end it so we can be together”.  It’s that simple.  He will also be there for you in other ways, perhaps he encourages you to move out of your home or provides financial assistance.  If you lover wants to become your number one, you will not have to ask, you will know.

If he is not exhibiting any of the aforementioned behaviors, then he is most likely enjoying the convenience of having a woman in his life without the obligation or commitment a normal relationship would require, and if you truly are looking for your next “real” relationship, stop wasting your time with this particular guy as he is not going to be there for you when and if you do exit your marriage.

What if your lover is also married?  This complicates the situation even more as you are not in a relationship triangle  you have now entered into a relationship square. 

Of all the different forms of affairs, this is the most complicated and most likely to fail in transitioning into a dedicated relationship between the two of you.

First of all, you are both cheating.  Why are you cheating?  You may be looking for an outlet for your sexuality and your personality and want nothing more, if that is the case, you know what you are doing and have no high expectations of the affair changing into something more.  However, if you are looking for more, you may be in danger of being extremely disappointed if he is not also looking to change partners.

In this case, it is very important to find out what his motivations for cheating are and what his expectations from the affair are.

Let’s look at why men cheat.

Some are also looking for their next serious relationship and are not comfortable leaving the marriage until they have secured a new partner, this is very unhealthy and reeks of codependency, however, it does happen.

Some men just succumb to the biological predisposition and their animal instincts.  They aren’t looking for a new partner, they are looking for pure recreational sex outside of their primary relationship.  They may be fun and charming, but their heart lies with their primary relationship, even if their body doesn’t.

This may be very hard for some people to comprehend or accept, but a very high risk time for these types of men (the biologically weak), is when their wife or life partner is pregnant or has just given birth.  Naturally if you are the other woman you may want to believe that he is cheating on his pregnant wife, or newly maternal girlfriend because he suspects that the child is not his, but in the majority of instances, this is not the case.  Sexual experience outside of the primary relationship in this instance is usually due to the male having a Madonna/Whore complex OR because the wife or girlfriend is incapable of having sexual relations due to the trauma of having just given birth or the discomfort of a late-term pregnancy.  If the man you are cheating with falls into this category, you are probably having an affair that is purely sexual in nature.

How can you tell if your affair is “just sex”?

The time you spend together is limited to sexual activity.  The primary goal being sexual gratification, no dating, no dancing and dining, just hooking up for the physical release and nothing more, is a dead give-away.

Some men cheat because they actually fall in love with another woman.

They didn’t plan it.  It just happened.

There was something innately missing in their primary relationship and the other woman comes along and possesses the spirit and personality required to evoke feelings of love and attraction within the man that may no longer exist with his wife or significant other.

Sometimes the man does not even realize that his marriage is lacking until he meets this other woman.

How do you know if this is the case with your affair?

Absent the fact that he is married or committed elsewhere, your relationship is caring and passionate.  He is attentive to you and your needs, he makes time with you, and he spends time with you doing a lot of things besides the horizontal bop.  He will tell you straight out that he is going to leave his marriage and he will tell you when, but the most important thing is that when the time comes HE DOES IT.

Affairs of the heart are complex and complicated, much more so than affairs of the body alone.  When the heart is involved, the intensity is there, the sharing is there and the man and the woman are both there.

It is a myth that all loves that begin while one partner or another or both are committed elsewhere are doomed to failure.  There is no blanket formula for love affairs that begin with cheating.  If it were true, when some say that “men never marry the woman they cheated with their first wife on”, there would be very few second marriages indeed.

I look at it this way.  Back in the olden days, when people truly expected to be married for life, people married very young but their life expectancy was much shorter than what it is today.

It is also a fact that as technology provides the human race with more and more leisure time and less time required to focus on utter survival, we have more time to examine relationships, to choose to renew or end or begin again.  People grow at different paces.

If two people marry in their late twenties, will those two people grow at the same pace and in the same direction?   Sometimes yes, sometimes no, we are not the same person at forty-five that we were at twenty-five or thirty-five, and neither are our spouses and lovers.  The person we loved ten years ago may have evolved (or failed to evolve) into someone we no longer want for a life mate, and so we move on.

Of course, it is always best to begin a relationship one-on-one, but there are times when this just doesn’t happen.  We can’t judge a book by its’ cover, nor can we project that a relationship is doomed to failure because of a less-than-perfect beginning.  In the same vein, we can’t project that a relationship will last because of love and passion, that goes for first marriages and relationships just as much as it does for subsequent ones.

Why do people cheat?

The list is endless.  This is just the tip of the iceberg and the most frequent causes that I have seen in my personal and professional experience.


Copyright © 2007

Brigid Bishop

This content may not be copied or reproduced in any way without the express written permission of the author. You are welcome to link to or bookmark this page, but please contact the author via Keen Mail if you wish to reproduce this article in whole or in part.


 Other Subjects Included in "The Dating Game"

Cheating and Affairs

The Relationship Limbo

The Geometry of Relationships

Masculine and Feminine Energy

Codependence, Independence and Interdependence

He Left His Wife.  Now What?

Need Help Sorting Out Your Relationship Concerns?

Visit Brigid Bishop




HAVE YOU PICKED UP YOUR COPY OF "THE DATING GAME" YET? A must read no matter what your relationship status.









Look for it online and at fine book stores EVERYWHERE! Ask for it by name!

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RELATIONSHIP COACHING AT YOUR FINGERTIPS!!!

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The Dating Game by Brigid Bishop

The Dating Game
Insights Into Affairs of The Heart
Authored by Brigid Bishop


Social networking sites, cell phones, texting, online chat and dating make it easier for us to access each other, but more difficult to form solid emotional bonds.

The 21st Century has life and relationships moving at a pace never before realized in earlier cultures. People are plugged in and connected on a 24/7 basis, yet, many still struggle with establishing healthy relationships.

The Dating Game provides insights into modern relationships and provides the reader with strategies for coping with dating, breaking up, affairs, divorce and codependency issues.

Find dating tips and relationship strategies that will help you build the healthy connections you want and begin making your relationships work for you.

Written with a sense of humor and true understanding of what the single person is facing today.



Copyright © 2010 by Brigid Bishop



I wrote this poem on May 30, 1997, just 23 days after becoming involved with Frank.  In many ways it was a self-fulfilling prophecy.  I think it is the greatest poem I have ever produced.  It has been published and copyrighted, you may or may not see yourself in here:

There Will Be Wolves
by Brigid Bishop

She looks up to meet his stare - she knows this is no answer to her prayer.
She lays back, gives it up again.
Holds tight, contaminates her heart again.

He knows his way around a woman.  He knows some secrets just unfold.  He knows that lies belie compassion.  He knows his heart has not grown old.

She always chooses the windy road.  He always takes the wrong turn.  Without a challenge, her imagination explodes.  He knows he's driving away.  She can laugh, say he's her friend.  He knows that truths belie compassion.  She spends the night playing pretend.  He knows he'll give it one more day.

He knows she's just a daydream.  She rides around remembering his touch.  He hears the fear inside his mind.  She knows he can't care too much.  He sometimes hopes she'll disappear.  She decides - she chooses.  He wants her to unwind.  She knows there will be wolves.

She looks at him, she feels his eyes, sees the smile in his desire.  He knows he can't stay too long.  Life awaits him back at home.  She lays back, revels in his arms, let's him in to her rebel heart.  He drives away thinking of her scent, and, did she meant the words that she said?

She knows that lies belie compassion.  She knows that boredom breeds contempt.  Did she waste her night tonight:  Or was it time well spent?  She wonders if she's seeping in, she shouldn't see anymore of him.  Confusion and collusion, the mist falls over her judgment.

She decides - she chooses - she has to play, she never loses.  she knows the rules and she laughs them off - she knows there will be wolves.  They're running down that darker path, laughing in the face of the aftermath.  They decide - they choose - they know there will be wolves.

He knows that desire's it's own emotion.  He knows his way around a woman.  He smiles his best disguise, ladens his lies with compassion.  He decides - he chooses - he has to play, he never loses.  He knows the rules and he laughs them off - he knows there will be wolves.

She lays back, gives it up again.  He smiles, he's her best friend.  She smiles, gives it up again.  She contaminates her rebel heart again.  They know desire's it's own emotion.  They run down the darker path.  The wolves are running beside them, they see the wolves and laugh.

They love to run with the wolves.  They love breaking the rules.  They know that lies belie compassion, they love sharing their truths.  They're racing down that darker path, laughing in the face of the aftermath.  They run faster, because they know there will be wolves.  They know - there will be wolves.



Copyright © 1997 Bridget J. Delfine
No Part of This Poem May be Reproduced without the Express Written Permission of the Author

Please contact me for permission to reproduce through my Keen Account, Thank You!
 

Hello all, thank you all for your kind messages concerning the recent loss of my son Zachary to a senseless murder.  He was only 27 years old when he died on September 11, 2014.

I am returning to work after nearly a full month off, due to necessity, but also to provide some distraction from my grief.

I am starting a movement in my area to try to combat the violence our local community is experiencing as well.

I hope to hear from you soon.

Brigid Bishop
Senselessly Murdered
September 11 

Sorry I have not been available this past week, and this is why.  I will return slowly, as I can.  Please be patient, I have some healing to do, and will start coming back to work soon.

My Son Zachary died a Hero.

He was staying at the home of an acquaintance, so that he could catch the bus to work in the morning, his car was broken down. He lived in a nearby town with no bus service.

Zach was protecting the people in the house, and died by a stab wound to the back.

Zachary was the gentlest, sweetest soul, he would never have believed such anger and cruelty would exist in this world. One of his quotes "Love me or hate me. I stay hate free. They say you learn from your mistakes, that's why they mistake me."

His family and friends will try to follow that advice, and love him dearly.

As his mother, I want him to remember the nightly blessing I gave him when I tucked him in when he was a little boy, "God Bless you, and keep you safe, and watch over you always." God Speed Zachary. I love you with all my heart, you will be with us every day, we know that.

#showzachyourlove #stayhatefree
Wondering if the gentleman that you are interested in developing a relationship with is sincere about wanting to get to know you?  Is he just interested in you in a "casual" way?  There are several key indicators of what a man's intentions are toward you that are easy enough to spot.

Understanding the short-term and long-term relationship strategies that men implement is an easy way to know whether your new interest is "worth the wait".  Applying this knowledge to your personal relationships is not a difficult task, it just takes a little critical thinking.

First of all, you have to understand what attracts men.  Looks.  Yes, men are shallow beings.  Attractiveness is measured psychologically by a person's symmetry.  If you are a pleasant looking individual, who has a face that is well-balanced, clear skin, and a decent appearance to your hair, you are probably considered reasonably attractive.  Body shape needs to lend itself to a "fertile" appearance.  A well-defined waist line, not anorexic, but a slimmer waist, with hips a bit broader, and a defined bosom are considered signs of fertility.  Well proportioned, balanced, symmetry again.

If a man is interested in a long-term relationship, he will pursue a woman who has symmetry, appears "fertile" (even if beyond child-bearing years), and has a relatively healthy appearance. 

If a man is only looking for short-term connection (casual sex), he will not really put a high value on the female's appearance, as he does not value her as a potential permanent partner.  So check out the quantity and quality of his short-term partners if you can.

Age does matter.  Men are drawn to fertility (yes, even if you are beyond child-bearing years).  Rarely does a younger male seek the companionship of a significantly older female.  Generally males pursue females who are an average of 3 to 5 years younger than themselves for long-term relationship formation, although this is the average, the older a male becomes, the larger the age gap.  If you are older than him, the odds that he is looking to you to form a long-term relationship go down, exponentially with each year that you are elder to him.  If you are 5 or more years older than him, unless you are extremely wealthy, or have some other type of material security to offer him, he is just looking for a casual, short-term experience with you.

Cougars are a myth.  They exist only in Hollywood and on TV shows, and remember, a real cougar is only using the younger man for HER pleasure, not building a "relationship".  So be realistic.  You may have a fun time with "Mr. I am 8 Years Older than Him", but that's all it is likely to become, don't expect a lot.  There are exceptions to every rule, but you would save yourself a lot of heartache if you learned to realize these relationships seldom develop and behave accordingly.

So, men are looking for symmetry, youth, and fertility for long-term relationship building.  What are they looking for in the short-term?  Anything goes.  In the short-term, men are unconcerned with symmetry, they may only be with you one time.  They have no concern about your age, you can be a suitable sexual partner regardless of being his senior, and perhaps an enjoyable one at that, until he finds someone he has a more committed interest in.  Body shape?  Short-term, men are usually unconcerned with whether you are too thin, too heavy, or perfectly symmetrical, they have no intention of sticking around once they have had enough pleasure from you.

A key indicator is also how your appearance matches up to his.  Tens attract tens, nines attract nines, and fives attract fives.  If you have a realistic self-awareness of your attractiveness level, and you believe yourself to be a six, and a gentlemen who is a nine begins showing an interest in you, be careful...he is probably only looking for a short-term connection (unless he views you as a 9 or 10).  Saying "you're hot" to you does not mean that he believes you are superior in attractiveness, it just means that he wouldn't kick you out of bed, not until he was done, anyhow. 

So, if you are looking for a long-term partner, keep in mind that he should be someone who is similar to you in level of attractiveness, age appropriate (+/- 5 Years is a stretch, usually plus 3 to 5 (or more if you are older), and -3 for the reach toward the youthful men), and shows a consistent interest in you.

What do I mean by consistent?

Regular, intentional interest and communication initiated by him, toward you.  If he only approaches you at the bar, at midnight, on Friday night, and you don't hear from him all week, that's not consistent.  If he likes your facebook posts, but never calls you to chat or asks you out, that's not consistency.  If you only see him at a class you both happen to enjoy, that is not consistent.  Direct and personal contact indicates interest.

Don't invest your time, or your heart, until he has built consistency.

Evolutionary Psychology teaches us these facts, and these facts are scientifically valid.  Evolutionary Psychology also states that men will wait to become physically intimate with a mate that they perceive as having long-term potential, but with short-term partners, they will want physical intimacy quickly, and very quickly find another short-term, once they are satisfied.

So, pay attention to the "Science" in love.  Take your time, let the male pursue, and do not become intimate until you feel he has a vested interest in you.

 

Has that horse dropped dead right underneath you and are you still standing there hitting it trying to make it get up and go?  Perhaps you need to check and see if your relationship has a pulse as well?

You've been involved with this guy for a good, long period of time, perhaps even a year or two, and yet, it feels uncomfortable for you to pick up the phone and call him, you feel like you might be bothering him, you don't want to upset him yet again, so you don't call, but you are anxious about when you are going to hear from him again.

You haven't had any fights, you just feel like something is wrong, a general feeling of anxiety comes over you when you think about the relationship.  Despite the fact that you have been seeing each other for at least a year, you feel just as insecure about when he is going to call you again as you did during that first month.

Even though you have been in some sort of relationship for sometime now, you still don't feel any sense of commitment from him, if you don't call him he might not call you. 

Why?

(To gain more insight into making your relationships work for you, purchase a copy of Brigid Bishop's The Dating Game, Insights Into Affairs of the Heart, available on Amazon and Kindle).

When you leave a few things at his house he reminds you that you have belongings there to take home with you, he goes to parties with friends without you, when he spends time with his family, you are not included. 

Why?

He says things like "let's not make more out of this than it is" when you get up out of bed with him and ask him if he wants you to stay over. 

Why?

He goes for days and days without contacting you. 

Why?

Since you are unable to absorb any of the above hints, I will tell you straight out why your man is behaving the way he is.  He does NOT want a relationship with you!  It's over dear!  Bury this poor dead horse and move on!  No matter what you do at this point, you are not going to get the commitment or the relationship you want with this guy, you are NOT in a relationship, you are single!  This guy is just spending time with you on occasion because he has not yet met the person he is going to REPLACE you with!

Your relationship is dead, please have the common sense and courtesy to bury it and let it rest in peace.  Further pursuit of happiness here will only end in disaster.

At times I receive calls from clients who are experiencing this type of relationship necromancy, and frequently they just don't want to hear the cold hard facts, and persist in trying to bring the dead back to life.

The most frequently asked question is "Why"?

Well, does it really matter "Why" he no longer has an active interest in you?  What matters is how this prolonged connection with the dead relationship is affecting you.  You are unhappy, you feel anxious all the time, you never know when or if you will hear from him so you are constantly "waiting" for his next move.  Let go!  Move on!  Find someone who really does care for you and be happy instead of miserable.  Get back into life!

I know of a woman who has been trying to make a situation like this work for over two years.  This man frequently breaks up with her, usually around a major holiday or a special day for her, like her birthday or their "anniversary", and yet she just won't let go!  Whenever he breaks it off with her, she chases and chases and chases him, literally throws herself at him, and then, when he takes advantage of what she offers and does nothing else, she asks me why.  I tell her the cold hard truth, he is not interested in a relationship with her and although they have been seeing each other for two years, it is not going to develop further and she really should seek her happiness elsewhere, yet she won't let go.  She stubbornly holds on, and says "well I don't understand, we've been together for two years".

No, they have NOT been together for two years, they were together for a few months at the very beginning and it has been a battle to stay "together" since then.  Nothing but on again, off again, and she is the one that always makes it seem to be "on again".

I truly cannot comprehend how some women waste their time, energy and emotion in situations like this.  When in the past it became apparent to me that a man no longer wished to share my company, I had no qualms about saying "Ok, well take care, good-bye" and moving on to someone who actually WANTED to spend time with me.

One woman I know had a few items she had strategically placed in her on/off boyfriends home, and he actually said to her "You need to take your things home with you, let's not make more out of this than it is" and she STILL persists in trying  to "make this work".

My lord, if a man ever said that to me I'd pack my stuff up and be gone from his life in about two seconds flat, change my phone number and immediately begin seeking alternate companionship.  Not this woman, no, she took her things home alright, but she is still there, on hold, waiting for the next "on" phase to begin.

It's sad really, time and emotion just wasted away that could be so much more well spent.

If a man is into you, you will know it, he will seek out your company, not avoid it.  If a man is avoiding spending time with you, TAKE THE HINT and spend your time wisely with those who enjoy being with you!

I Want It All, And I Want It Now!

 

Great Song by Queen!  One of my favorite bands, by the way.

I certainly understand the sentiment behind the song, and it is perfectly fine to want it all and want it now, but, my dearest, sometimes Patience truly is a Virtue.

I have had many, many clients over the years, with situations at varying degrees of difficulty, and we have worked through them successfully together.  There were times when a learning curve may have slowed or delayed progress, but we got through the toughest times with a high degree of success.

The learning curve seems to always come with my clients when it comes to communication.  Many do not and will not simply wait out a situation to allow it to change.  As discussed in my multiple blogs on  Masculine and Feminine Energy, it seems that a large percentage of female clients cannot self-discipline themselves to the feminine (passive) energy when it comes to communication.

Despite our work together, they decide not to follow the advice of the cards, and the natural balance between Masculine and Feminine Energy, and they initiate contact with the object of their desires first (masculine energy).  All is not lost, however, any progress that was made during their self-imposed silence has now been erased and has lost any and all effectiveness in allowing the male to feel their absence and grow uncomfortable.  Now the male does not have a motivating factor (discomfort) to produce any change in his behavior.

By initiating contact the female has now condoned whatever his unacceptable behavior was and basically trained him that it is okay to treat her like this (inattentively).

So although the woman now has the immediate gratification of having communication and contact with the object of her desires, she has now, inadvertently, taken a few steps backwards into establishing her feminine energy and has most likely delayed any significant change in the males’ behavior.

Why?  Because now, you have reassured the male in question that yes, indeed, you are still actively interested in him.  So why change his behavior?  If he doesn’t feel like calling you for another week or two, you don’t mind, you just trained him that you will reach out to him if he doesn’t reach out to you, you will do all the “work”, and if he feels like being accessible to you he will, if he doesn’t, he won’t.  You have taught him that your feelings don’t matter, you don’t warrant his attention because on the peripheral, you will still be there.  He has absolutely no fear (motivation) that your attention will wander, after all, it’s been two weeks since he called you and here you are ringing him up telling him that you miss him!!  He knows he has you, has no fear that you will go away, so why would he change?

Now, you’ve made the contact, expressed your feelings, he was glad to hear from you, the phone call has ended, and guess what?  He goes silent again.

You have, in effect, told him in no uncertain terms that he can go about his busy life and when he has the time or the need for your companionship, you’ll still be over here in limbo waiting…no worries for him.

The need for immediate emotional gratification is the same need that throws the timing of most relationships off when you succumb to it. 

What is immediate emotional gratification?

It is infantile in nature.  Immediate gratification is the “immediate” fulfilling of a need, as in when an infant cries because they are hungry and the mother rushes to feed the child.  This is good, this is responsible motherhood and necessary to build a sense of security within any newborn child.

We are not babies, sorry to say.  We are grown men and women and we should be able to discipline ourselves to reap the benefits of delayed gratification.

What is delayed gratification?

Delayed gratification is being able to wait to have your needs fulfilled at a more permanent and stable level, for example, the student who wants to become an attorney and works through four years of college and then attends law school and delays the “gratification” of going out and working full time in order to buy the nice car they have their eye on.  The goal is not to have a nice car at the age of 22, but to have a good career and an even nicer car (and overall lifestyle) at the age of 25 or 26 or so.  Delayed gratification is a sign of mature and responsible adulthood.

How do these two differing types of gratification work into the Geometry of Relationships?

Ok, immediate gratification leads you to make those phone calls to the object of your desire and having that immediate relief that the contact may bring.  It feels good, your needs are satisfied, your thirst for his voice is quenched, for now.  As discussed above, you are now most likely going to go back into the waiting mode and either reach for immediate gratification again or suffer it out and wait for the delayed gratification.

With the delayed gratification approach you will suffer now, in the immediate, you will be uncomfortable, you will be wondering why he doesn’t reach out, but you do not reach out to him, you wait it out.  As discussed in multiple other blogs found under my category “Brigid Bishop, Relationship Coach”, you busy yourself with other matters, other dates, and you do not reach out at all.  It is not easy and it takes self-discipline, but it can be done.

In order to prevent copyright infringement, this blog has been condensed to an excerpt as it currently appears in Brigid's book "The Dating Game, Insights Into Affairs of The Heart" releasing in April 2010 and available at Amazon and fine book sellers everywhere.  Ask for it by name!

Copyright © 2007 Brigid Bishop

This content may not be copied or reproduced in any way without the express written permission of the author.  You are welcome to link to or bookmark this page, but please contact the author via Keen Mail if you wish to reproduce this article in whole or in part. 

 

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 *Reposted at the request of Alicia!   7/23/08*

This is for you my dear friend!

 

Tarot Tips by Brigid Bishop:  Timing and the Tarot

When?  When?  When?

The most difficult skill in interpreting tarot is pinning down time.  Many querents fail to realize that the timing of events is static to begin with, many factors can change or “adjust” the timing of predictive readings.

The first and foremost factor that affects timing is any action that is taken by the querent that was not premeditated at the time the reading was given.  For instance, the most common question asked is “When will he/she contact me next?”

We do a spread and it looks like a one week to ten day period.  First of all, in the divulging of timing, if I say “one week to ten days”, it may actually be day ELEVEN that the contact occurs in, I am NOT a pinpointed timing reader.  Anyway, we get a read with this timeframe and the querent gets “antsy” and picks up the phone, calls and leaves a voicemail or sends a text……the Free Will of the querent has changed the situation and the reading is no longer valid.  Yes, at times, taking the bull by the horns like this may push things to happen more quickly, but, more often than not, it pushes things back.  (See my blog on Masculine and Feminine Energies for more info):  The Dating Game, Exploring Masculine and Feminine Energies

Anyway, to calculate timing in a reading, I use a combination of several different methods.  First of all, I generally use a spread that divulges timing based on the position of the cards.  The positions give me a “guesstimate” of the timing.  We have positions that include, but are not limited to, one to two weeks, three to six weeks, three to six months, and six months to a year.  The cards themselves relate to timing as well, certain cards indicate immediate action, certain cards are passive and hint at delay, etc.  Where they land in the spread aids in the interpretation of “when”. 

I also take into consideration the parochial version of tarot, which assigns Wands to Spring, Cups to Summer, Swords to Autumn and Pentacles to Winter, and then, secondarily, the Aces are the first week, the Twos are the second week and so on, this is taken into consideration as well.

The general intuitive or “psychic” interpretation I get when looking at the spread as a whole is also a key factor in calculating timing.

There is also a method that I can use, but rarely do over the phone unless the querent requests it (it is not “quick” and you are paying by the minute, so I only perform upon request).  This is where they want to count off the days or weeks or months until an event.  The question is asked, such as “How many days until he calls?”, I shuffle and cut and begin flipping over and counting out the cards until I hit an Ace, that is your answer.  Obviously, there are 78 cards in the deck, and the first Ace could possibly be card number 74, this is not a quick method when reading by phone, but if requested, I will perform it for you.

So, calculating timing is a complex process and it is very difficult to pinpoint to an “exact” day.  Usually, in my readings, if I see an event in days, I am only off by a day or two, if I see it in weeks, it may vary by a week or two, if I see the answer in months, it may vary by a month or two, but the event will ultimately happen, it’s just difficult to pin down, it’s like sticking your hand into a bucket of water and wanting the hole to remain after you pull your hand out……water seeks its’ own level, and events happen in their own time, I can give you my best estimate through Tarot, but I do not claim to be exact.

Generally, the closer in the event is, the more clearly it comes up in the cards, and the more "exact" the timing is.

Please be sure to visit Brigid Bishop to receive an ethical and professional tarot consultation.

 

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