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Men Are From Adam Women Are From Eve

Men Are From Adam Women Are From Eve

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Published by saad asad
Countless number of books has been written and numerous seminars have been arranged to teach men and women their differences and the solutions to their relationship problems. But it seems they are still wandering in a desert clueless and confused. Even though psychologists and researchers are doing more and more research on human behavior and we are constantly being updated in our understanding and knowledge of relationships but we still face a steep rise in men and women breaking up and ending up in a divorce, which is taking its toll on our society in terms of disillusioned kids and depressed individuals seeking refuge in drugs and alcohol. The uncontrolled use of alcohol and drugs in turn devastates their health and only adds fuel to fire.
Countless number of books has been written and numerous seminars have been arranged to teach men and women their differences and the solutions to their relationship problems. But it seems they are still wandering in a desert clueless and confused. Even though psychologists and researchers are doing more and more research on human behavior and we are constantly being updated in our understanding and knowledge of relationships but we still face a steep rise in men and women breaking up and ending up in a divorce, which is taking its toll on our society in terms of disillusioned kids and depressed individuals seeking refuge in drugs and alcohol. The uncontrolled use of alcohol and drugs in turn devastates their health and only adds fuel to fire.

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Men are from Adam Women are from Eve

By SAAD ASAD (MSc)

So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate. Jesus

A WORD FROM THE AUTHOR
This book became my inspiration after my own divorce and when for the first time I started looking for relationship advice. I read the famous book on relationships Men are from Mars women are from Venus .The book was amazing and exciting and gave me a lot of insight into the mechanics of a relationship. But the book lacked a certain charisma and I decided to share my own view on this subject with a more unified approach. I believe as a spiritual person that we are all sons and daughters of Adam and Eve, we all have a common parentage and a common ancestry and we all belong to planet Earth. The first relationship ever created by God was man and wife. That was the start of the human race and that’s why the relationship between a man and a woman is the most sacred one because it establishes the continuity of humanity. When God first created Adam he ordered the angels to prostrate Adam to prove the superiority of the human race over all creations. But one angel (The Satan who was once very pious) disobeyed and refused to prostrate Adam and became the enemy of the human race till the end of time. And from then onwards Satan plants the seed of discord between men and women so that there is chaos in this world. Adam was then allowed to live in the heaven and enjoy his life on his own but soon he got bored and felt an air of emptiness, even though he had everything imaginable to his disposal. He felt lonely and wished for company and partnership. Then one fine day when he was sleeping God created Eve. When Adam woke up he saw this beautiful woman besides him who was smiling at him. Startled he asked Eve “who are you?” and she replied “I’m your serenity and your tranquility”. After the original sin when both Adam and eve where sent down to earth they started the journey of life and subsequently other relationships came into existence. As the human race flourished and grew in number we travelled from the Stone Age to the Bronze Age and into the Iron Age, but in all those ages men and women had the same fundamental relationship problems which were faced by the first couple. Men and women to this date are trying to solve the mystery of their chemical bonding. They are trying to decipher the code of this intriguing complexity of their co existence. Countless number of books has been written and numerous seminars have been arranged to teach men and women their differences and the solutions to their relationship problems. But it seems they are still wandering in a desert clueless and confused. Even though psychologists and researchers are doing more and more research on human behavior and we are constantly being updated in our understanding and knowledge of relationships but we still face a steep rise in men and women breaking up and ending up in a divorce, which is taking its toll on our society in

terms of disillusioned kids and depressed individuals seeking refuge in drugs and alcohol. The uncontrolled use of alcohol and drugs in turn devastates their health and only adds fuel to fire. But like it is said “not all wanderers are lost” there is light at the end of the tunnel. We just need to understand that the basis of a happy and healthy life stems from harmonious relationships between men and women who become the foundation of a family and eventually become role models for their future generations. This book is not one of your run of the mill relationship books which talk about the same old tricks and tips of how to understand the opposite sex and how to communicate effectively with your partner to achieve superior relationship quality nor this book will talk about the caves and the waves as described by John Gray in his book men are from Mars women are from Venus. You won’t find this book sexist or patronizing; this book takes a very practical approach and addresses the issues from a neutral and unbiased perspective. I have personally read hundreds of relationship books and found them very interesting and full of useful information but they lack one pivotal thing and that is “real substance”. These books are written with a commercial point of view in mind. Their approach is rigid and talks about men and women speaking different languages. This idea of two different species really bothers me and makes me question the very basic premise of their whole idea. In this book I have taken a paradigm shift away from this divisive mindset and taken a step towards cohesion, commonality and familiarity between the sexes and not like a battle of the sexes. Therefore I have promoted the idea that we are all one source and come from the same background and hence the title men are from Adam women are from Eve. In this book I have gathered my extensive experience of human psychology and my understanding of male female relationship from my ten year counseling experience. My goal here is to lay down the facts and figures in a plain and simple language so that couples can internalize the concepts and can work towards a harmonious and blissful life.

Good luck!!!!

Having someone wonder where you are when you don't come home at night is a very old human need. Margaret Mead

CHAPTER ONE

What is a relationship? We all talk about relationships but we never tried to find out what a relationship really is? We never took the time to define a relationship and understand the importance and status of relations in our daily life. That’s precisely what I am going to do over here before we start off with any more discussion on this topic. We need to start off with the fundamentals and then build upon our understanding of these basics elements of a relationship. A relationship is something which defines us and gives meaning to our existence. For example Christianity is a relationship, not a religion. If someone says that he or she is a Christian then effectively they are defining themselves as someone who has a set of values and beliefs which gives meaning to their existence. And when a man and woman form a relationship they are actually defining each other as two human beings who have a meaning in their lives. The study of relationships combines the elements of sociology, anthropology and psychology. The level of relationship is directly proportional to the level of interdependence and proximity of a couple. Relationships are everywhere and without relationships we don’t even exist. Imagine if you were the only person on the face of planet earth how would you describe yourself? What would you say to yourself “who am I”? Where have I come from and where am I going? What is the purpose of my life? We are whatever we are because of our relationships because of our parents, our kids, our wives and girlfriends, our husbands and boyfriends, our friends and colleagues, our teachers, mentors, uncles, aunts, cousins and so on. They all define us and give meaning to our life. These are all our interpersonal relationships which range from intimate man and wife relations to more social relations like business associates and work colleagues. In this book we will limit ourselves to intimate relationships and will further define what an intimate relationship is. Intimate relationships refers to the union of a male and female on three different levels which are 1. The Physical Level 2. The Mental Level 3. The Spiritual Level If there is physical, mental and spiritual relationship between a man and a woman then we can call it an intimate relationship. That relationship is a durable relationship which contains all of these three elements and if even one of them is missing then we cannot call that an intimate relationship. For example if a man and a woman are only engaged on a physical level then we

would classify this as a sexual relationship or in modern terminology we would call them “fuck buddies”. If they are only connected on a mental level then that would be a relationship of male female friendship where they like each other’s company and share their experiences like a confidant. If it is just a spiritual interaction then I would call this a relationship of divinity or bonding through the power of oneness of God. And that’s even true for those people who don’t follow a religion. Here I would like to clarify one commonly misunderstood phenomenon which has crept into the minds of many couples and that is the idea of confusing dating with having a relationship. I cannot stress upon this enough that “dating is not a relationship” and not an intimate relationship by any standard or creed. Dating is just a process, it’s a process of selection where a person is evaluating a possible long term association with another person, it’s a mean to an end and by no means an end in itself. Dating is more like playing Russian roulette where you bet on a number hoping for a favorable outcome but the odds are very low. We will discuss more on this topic of dating in another chapter dedicated to this “social activity”. Our life revolves around our intimate relationships, finding a partner or a spouse is one of the basic needs of a human being. Abraham Maslow an American psychologist in his theory of “hierarchy of human needs“ explains the five levels of basic human needs in their order of importance and takes a bottom up approach. In his pyramid of basic needs he places physical needs like food, sleep, clothing and shelter at the very bottom and then moves up to safety needs and then belongingness needs which include our interpersonal and intimate relationship needs. Beyond the first three kinds of needs comes the esteem needs and self actualization. Here is a pictorial representation of the Maslow’s theory of hierarchy of needs where you can see the more basic needs at the bottom. Now after having established the importance of relationships in our lives we will further discuss intimacy and love in the next chapter.

LOVE IS SPIRITUAL AND SEX IS BIOLOGICAL Napoleon Hill

HEALTH FACT

Love is a wonder drug. Here's more good news about physical intimacy. During a sensual encounter, your body pumps out 200 percent more endorphins (those feel-good chemicals responsible for a runner's high), according to a recent Johns Hopkins University study. Other research has found that physical intimacy relieves headaches and zaps mild depression instantly. The adrenaline released can act as a natural antihistamine, clearing up the winter snuffles. One study even showed it was 10 times more effective than Valium at giving people a calm, contented feeling.

CHAPTER TWO Love and intimacy: Love is one of the most difficult words Human beings have ever invented and no one at this point knows the true meaning and definition of this word. The original root of this word comes from Latin lubēre or libēre which means to please. Merriam Webster defines love as a strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties or attraction based on sexual desire or affection and tenderness felt by lovers, a warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion and an unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another. Other people like the Sufi mystics also tried to define love in their own way like Rumi says and I quote

Let the lover be disgraceful, crazy, Absentminded. Someone sober Will worry about things going badly. Let the lover be. The minute I heard my first love story, I started looking for you, not knowing How blind that was. Lovers don't finally meet somewhere, They’re in each other all along. From Essential Rumi By Coleman Barks
Khalil Jibran a philosopher from Lebanon and the author of the famous book “The Prophet” tries to define love in these words

When you love you should not say,

'God is in my heart,' but rather, 'I am in the heart of God.' And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course. Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself. But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires: To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night. To know the pain of too much tenderness. To be wounded by your own understanding of love; And to bleed willingly and joyfully. To wake at dawn with a winged heart and to give thanks for another day of loving; To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy; To return home at eventide with gratitude; And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.
And I would describe love in these words

Love is Pain Love is Anguish Love is Ecstasy
I personally never use the phrase “falling in love” because it gives a negative connotation to this beautiful feeling. You can only fall from a desired state to a less desired state .love is something which fills you with positive emotions so I use the phrase” rising in love “. I once as a young boy asked my mentor and my teacher professor Qayyum the century’s old question of what is love and I got one of the most profound answers I could ever imagine. Prof Qayyum said and I quote “love is what is left behind when the fever of flesh is over” Love is patient, love is kind. It has no envy, nor it boasts itself and it is never proud. It rejoices over the evil and is the truth seeker. Love protects; preserves and hopes for the positive aspect of

life. In the past the study of philosophy and religion has done many speculations on the phenomenon of love. But love has always ruled, in music, poetry, paintings, sculptor and literature. Psychology has also done lot of dissection to the essence of love, just like what biology, anthropology and neuroscience has also done to it. Intimacy on the other hand is the closeness you feel with another human being. Intimacy develops through the knowledge and experience of the significant other. Intimacy can be divided into two types 1. Emotional intimacy 2. Physical intimacy In love the emotional intimacy develops after the initial physical intimacy because the union of the bodies triggers chemicals in the brain (dopamine) which create an emotional bonding or closeness. The amount of love which a person feels basically depend on three components which are best described in the triangular theory of love developed by psychologist Robert Sternberg. Now we will examine in detail what couples can learn from this theory and how they can indentify current relationship situation. Triangular theory of love: The triangular theory of love talks about three main components which describe the different stages and types of love. These three components are 1. Passion: I call it the animal attraction, the sexual derive 2. Intimacy: It’s the closeness of the couple as we discussed before 3. Commitment: It’s the mutual decision of a couple to remain together According to Robert Sternberg as a couple goes through the relationship the relative emphasis changes within each component and this eventually determines if their relationship will survive or not. A relationship based on a single element is less likely to survive than one based on two or three elements. Let’s look at this classical theory in the form of a triangle which will elucidate the theory more effectively

Nonlove: If none of the three components are present we will call this state a state of no love. Liking/friendship: If there is just intimacy and closeness among two people then this state will be called a state of liking or friendship and this does not include any long term commitment or passion. Infatuated love: If the basis of a relationship is solely based upon animalistic desires and passion then this state would be known as infatuated love which is usually short lived and fades away over a certain period of time. This kind of relationships develop mostly among young teenage boys and girls often in high school where the interaction is purely based upon hormonal activity but this is by no means limited to young people it can happen at any stage of life.

Empty love: This kind of relationship is mostly found in couples who have been together for a very long time; there is no passion or intimacy left in the relationship but the couple remains committed to each other due to various factors such as family and religious pressure or due to children of marriage. In my extensive relationship counseling

experience I have seen this in a lot of Asian and Muslim women who remain committed to the relationship and put up even with abuse or domestic violence because they are not financially independent or they are too afraid of being a divorcee due to the stigma attached to this title in the society. Asian and Muslim cultures make it very difficult for a woman to move in the society as a single divorced person.

Romantic love: This type of relationship has both passion and intimacy but it lacks commitment. Companionate love: This kind of relationship occurs between married couples who have intimacy and commitment but do not engage in a sexual activity very often or sex is nonexistent but they love each other because these couples just become a habit for each other and cannot think of living apart. Fatuous love: This is the kind of relationship which has passion and commitment but no real intimacy, this is a classical example of a man and a woman who are sexually attracted to each other there is a lot of sexual chemistry between them and they rush into a long term commitment and get married. The commitment is conditional upon passion and not real friendship and togetherness. These kinds of marriages dissolve within the first two years as couples realize they are not really compatible.

Consummate love: This is the type of love we all desire and this love represents the complete and the ideal relationship. Consummate love has all the three components of intimacy, passion and commitment. A couple who experiences this love in its totality remains in a happy union for years and enjoy great sex even after 10 years of marriage, but having said that one should keep this in mind that maintaining this kind of perfect love is very hard and requires a lot of open communication and tons of trust.

We are all looking for this perfect kind of love which will last forever and we will live happily ever after but in reality we never get that completely. Somehow the divorce rates have grown astronomically and the situation is becoming worse by the day. We initially feel that we have found what we were looking for and even feel the taste of the consummate love in the beginning but then it all ends up in smoke. Where are we going wrong? Why so many people are making this mistake more and more? What has happened of the concept of growing old together and spending the life till the day we leave this world? What happened to till death do us apart? I personally feel relationships have become disposable. Everything has become so commercial that love has just got lost in the labyrinth of today’s increasingly challenging

demands. Fifty years ago people were very happy in their relationships because there were fewer distractions and people used to spend a lot of quality time together and the emphasis was on quality and not quantity. Many couples today claim to spend time together by watching a movie or watching TV. This is not going to help; rather technology is creating a gulf between couples. The husband or boyfriend is spending more time on the internet and the girlfriend or the wife is busy chatting on the phone with a friend complaining and moaning. Couples in this era are living a very independent life the definition of the family unit has drastically changed over the years. Men and women are not in those stereotype traditional roles where the men used to go to work and the women used to stay at home looking after the kids and doing cleaning. People are more and more educated now in America. There are almost equal number of guys and gals in graduate and post graduate programs in various universities around the country. Women are more successful in business than men and more productive than men. This has been proven in the current recession because there are fewer women out of work than men and in most cases it is the male counterpart who is now doing the household chores due to unemployment and the women are the main bread winners. In our quest of the perfect consummate love we often make this particular mistake by not understanding the modern couple and the resultant is ill advice which does not produce results. First of all we have to change our orthodox thinking of separating the gender roles. A couple is like a singular entity and they complement each other none is complete without the other. In the coming chapters we will talk about the issues of a couples with a modern perspective so that we can harbor and nurture lasting and loving relationships.

Assumptions are the termites of relationships. Henry Winkler

No road is long with good company. Turkish Proverb

CHAPTER THREE Do it right the first time: the science of Dating Dating is a process of finding the right mate not just settling for anyone who comes along. You date because you want to get married someday and who so ever says they are afraid of marriage are basically lying to themselves. God created everything in couples and that is why every religion in this world stresses upon the institution of marriage. Finding the right partner is the utmost important task faced by men and women. Here I would like to lay down some of the fatal mistakes done by partners while they choose their partners. • Date within your faith: This is one of the most classical mistakes couples commit in a cosmopolitan society like America. There are many people living in America with different religious beliefs, I always tell my clients don’t try to experiment by dating outside your faith, you are bound to fail. If you are Christian then you should really look for someone who shares your religious beliefs. Couples tend to down play the effect of religion when it comes to their faith and act as if religion does not matter. This attitude has led to catastrophic amount of damage done to the relationship and the children of marriage. Date within your race: There is this old English adage once my dad told me “ birds of feather flock together” this does not mean that inter racial relationships are not sustainable but if you date within your own ethnicity there is a huge chance of a harmonious relationship. You don’t have to re-learn the whole culture or cultural sensitivities of a different ethnicity. Dating within your race makes your job much easier. Keeping in mind that maintaining a relationship sound is in itself is a daunting task you wouldn’t want extra responsibilities would you? • Date within your age: don’t try to change the laws of nature. Significant age disparity in sexual relationships has been and remains a feature of couples in many cultures and societies. Historically the most common pattern in heterosexual couples is an older man with a younger woman; however the converse (older woman/younger man) has increased significantly in many countries. Here I would like to introduce the "half-your-age-plus-seven" rule. The "half-your-age-plus-seven rule" is a rule of thumb used by some in Western cultures defining a mathematical formula to judge whether the age difference in an intimate relationship is socially acceptable. Mathematically speaking, the rule is:

Never be biased against one or the other form of dating: Dating is a crucial activity in marketing yourself and making yourself available for the right person. No one is going to knock on your door and present themselves for a relation relationship. Finding a partner is like finding a job. The more interviews you can get the more chances you have to land in the right job. Same principle applies to dating. Some people prefer one form of dating to another which is the wrong approach because you need to market yourself through different need channels of dating. In my ten years of dealing with single people I have noticed that the majority of people look to date within their comfortable zone i.e. their social circle. I call this the propinquity effect in effect, social psychology; propinquity (from Latin propinquitas, nearness) is one of the main factors , leading to interpersonal attraction It refers to the physical or psychological proximity between attraction. people. The propinquity effect is the tendency for people to form friendships or romantic relationships with those whom they encounter often, forming a bond between subject and friend. In other words, relationships tend to be formed between those who have a high propinquity. It high was first theorized by psychologists Leon Festinger, Stanley Schachter, Kurt Lewin and Kurt Back in what came to be called the Westgate studies conducted at MIT (1950). I always emphasis to break away from this tendency and look at other avenues as well, no channel is better than the other one .The probability of finding the right or wrong partner is wrong always the same. I encourage my clients to use various systems of organized dating such as

Online dating: Instead of using a traditional matchmaker, online dating uses specifically : uses targeted websites to meet new people. One good thing about Internet dating: you're guaranteed to click with whomever you meet. Unknown.

Speed dating: Where a group of people get together for several hours in public; one is : given a set amount of time to sit and talk to a particular person before moving on to the next.

Mobile dating/cell phone dating: Where text messages to and from a mobile/cell phone /cell carrier is used to show interest in others on the system. Can be web based or online web-based dating as well depending on the company.

Virtual dating: A combination of video game playing and dating, where users create avatars and spend time in virtual worlds in an attempt to meet other avatars with the purpose of meeting for potential dates.

Singles events: Where a group of singles are brought together to take part in various events for the purposes of meeting new people. Events can include such things as parties, workshops and games.

Blind date: Where the people involved have not met each other previously. The match could have been arranged by mutual friends, relatives or by a dating system.

No one ever said dating was easy. First dates are awkward, second dates are expectant and the dates that follow that -- during which two people really start getting down to the business of getting to know each other -- present hundreds, if not thousands, of opportunities for missteps, faux pas, blunders and mistakes. That is to say nothing of the myriad chances for problems to which you could fall prey while arranging, planning and preparing for dates. We call too often or not enough, we're too available or never around, we wear sandals to fancy restaurants, laugh hysterically at bad jokes, show up with blue carnations, gab on our cell phones during dinner and commit countless other dating crimes, mostly without realizing we’re doing it. No doubt about it -- bad dating behavior is a rampant affliction, and it's time to cure it with some common sense advice. If dating is a game, then just like any other game, there are rules you need to study, learn and follow. After all, you wouldn't take the field without knowing where the base lines are, would you? (For those of you who are immune to ball field metaphors, the answer is "no.") While none of these do's and don'ts are set in stone and, as your mother told you, there are obviously exceptions to every rule. Here I attempt to equip you with an idiot-proof playbook for the fast-paced, intense, exciting, full-contact sport of searching for someone with whom to fall in love.

Whenever I date a guy, I think, is this the man I want my children to spend their weekends with? Rita Rudner

Dating Rules -- Do's 1. Do try to always look your best and be punctual. Showing up late or looking messy gives the impression that you don't care -- and, if that's the case, why go out with this person in the first place? 2. Do try to enjoy yourself on dates. Yes, finding your soul mate is serious business, and it can sometimes even be a scary endeavor, but keep in mind that this is supposed to be fun. 3. Do compliment your date on how he or she looks. Men and women tend to put a lot of effort into getting ready for a date, and it's nice (and flattering) to hear that all that energy paid off. 4. Do be interested and interesting. Ask questions, share insights and pay attention when your date is telling you what they like to do, read, watch, listen to, etc. 5. Do tell someone directly if you're not interested in seeing them again. Lying and stringing people along simply because you're too scared to tell them the truth is selfish and hurtful. If you don't want to go on another date with someone, let them down as gently -- but firmly -- as possible. 6. Do date only people you're attracted to, no matter what your friends say. Approval by your peers doesn't prove a thing. Attraction is not a choice. 7. Do stay positive, even when dates don't end well. It is most certainly true that you will date a few frogs before you find a prince. Along the way, you will probably meet some pretty nice people. 8. Do plan ahead. Dating is a creative diversion that requires concentration and energy, so make arrangements ahead of time and let your date know you put some thought into the evening. 9. Do be proactive about finding people to date. The man or woman you've been searching for your whole life is probably not going to come ring your doorbell and beg you to go to dinner anytime soon. Dating requires action, so get out there and meet as many people as you can. It’s a numbers game. 10. Do surround yourself with positive, like-minded people who are dating, too. Part of the fun of dating is celebrating, comparing notes and commiserating with your friends.

Surround yourself with positive people who are rooting for you to succeed at love and will be there for you if/when you need emotional support. Dating Rules -- Don'ts 1. Don't call, text message or email someone you've just started seeing more than once a day unless they reply (or in the event of an emergency). Desperation and instability are major turnoffs. 2. Don't date the kind of people who've hurt you in the past. Many of us are attracted to people who are bad for us, but it's important to break these patterns and seek out healthy relationships with matches who won't demean you or make you feel bad about yourself in any way. 3. Don't be late for a date. It's just rude. If you have to change your plans, give the other person as much notice and consideration as possible. And always apologize. 4. Don't lie to your date or about any aspect of your life, even if the truth isn't as sexy or you're worried they won't like it. It would be awful to ruin a potentially life-changing relationship with your perfect match because of some silly lie you told early on to impress him or her. 5. Don't be too available. We don't mean you should play games, but if you're free every night, you're probably not taking care of yourself, pursuing your own interests and spending time with your friends which mean you're probably not very interesting to talk to. People with full, exciting lives make the best dates. 6. Don't give away too much about yourself at the beginning. Revealing your innermost secrets on the second date can lead to rejection. Don't be scared to open up, but remember that getting to know someone takes time, and you should let your relationship evolve. 7. Don't check out other people when you're on a date ever. This is just tacky. You may think you are subtle, but while you're scoping the cutie in the corner, your date will be heading for the door. Extend your partner the courtesy of concentrating solely on them while you're with them. 8. Don't be rude or get drunk on a date. Courtesy and manners will get you everywhere. 9. Don't ignore your personal safety. Carry your cell phone and keep it charged -- and make sure to tell your friends where you're going and when you'll be back. First dates

should take place in well-lit public places. Don't ever let yourself be coerced into going anywhere or doing anything that makes you uncomfortable. 10. Don't give out personal information like your home phone number or address on the first date. Keep these details to yourself until you trust the person you're dating. 11. Don't have sex on a first date. If you like someone and are interested in getting to know them better (and possibly having a relationship), sex on a first date will likely ruin everything. It's much too soon, it's not romantic and it communicates to the other person that you're more interested in their physical characteristics than in finding out who they are. "Women need a reason to have sex. Men just need a place." Billy Crystal 12. Never date a married person. Statistically, it is very unlikely that they will ever leave their husband or wife for you. Dating someone who's married is the best way to serve yourself a heaping helping of misery, lies, deceit, sadness and heartache. If you are married, separate before dating. If you're single, don't be a shoulder to cry on -- you deserve better. Go out and find someone who's emotionally (and legally) available to you!

Dating is so insecure. My last relationship, I was always there for her and she dumped me. I told her about it. I said, "Remember when your grandma died? I was there. Remember when you flunked out of school? I was there. Remember when you lost your job? I was there!" She said, "I know -- you're bad luck." Tom Arnold

Dating behaviors to avoid: Don't talk negatively about an ex-boyfriend in front of a guy you're dating. Your ex is somebody you dated, invited into your life, and with whom you spent a lot of time. So, when a man or a woman asks you about your ex, you can politely say, "We are no longer together. It was a great relationship while it lasted, and I learned a lot." That's it. Don’t fish for compliments, true feelings will come from the heart. You don't need to do everything together. You're still getting to know him or her. If there are things he or she likes to do that simply don't interest you, be cool with it. Paranoia runs rampant. Here you are dating a man you really like, and the first couple of weeks are going well. Then, that first boys' night out happens. In the beginning, you send him a text that says, "Have a great time tonight!" As the night progresses, however, seeds of doubt start forming in your mind about what he's doing, and you start to think "Is he cheating on me? Is he flirting with other women? Where is he right now?" So then, you lob another text in to him asking "What's going on? What are you doing right now?" Even though he tells you he's just hanging out with his friends, you proceed to make a major blunder. You start checking up on him with continuous texts throughout the night. This paranoia will push a man away. So when you are dating a man and he's out with his friends, respect his "guy time" -- it will make you the cool woman he's always wanted to find.

Let's face it: a date is a job interview that lasts all night. The only difference between a date and a job interview is: not many job-interviews is there a chance you'll end up naked at the end of it. Jerry Seinfeld

No greater evil can a man endure Than a bad wife, nor find a greater good Than one both good and wise; and each man speaks As judging by the experience of his life. SOPHOCLES

Five Traits a Guy Should Have Before You Get Serious: As it turns out, not necessarily. "We often mistake a strong physical connection as a sign that two people are meant for each other," says Paul Dobransky, MD, founder of womenshappiness.com. Yes, chemistry is key to a lasting bond, but it isn't the final word. Other factors should be considered too, and they take some sussing out. New findings describe the characteristics in a guy that actually predict relationship success, some of which you may be overlooking. 1. He Knows What He Wants Any guy you're serious about should be able to articulate his long-term goals and passions (sorry, fantasy football and Xbox don't count). He can't ally himself with you until he has a sense of how he envisions his life in the future... and how you fit in. "If a man has no idea what he wants to be when he 'grows up,' then it will be impossible for him to commit to you," says Dobransky. Don't assume he'll work things out, because when he does, you may realize his ambitions don't mesh with yours. "This mistake has contributed to the starter-marriage phenomenon, in which couples in their 20s and 30s suddenly realize they're going in different directions and divorce at an early age," says Dobransky. "It's preventable as long as you're both clear about your plans." 2. He Has a Sunny Outlook A recent study led by the University of Oregon found that women who had upbeat partners felt more satisfied in their relationships and -- this is huge -- that the man's level of optimism determined the relationship's staying power. Not only is it nice to have someone help you see the silver lining of a situation that totally sucks, but cheerful guys are good at keeping things in perspective, so they don't let little conflicts get to them and can go with the flow. Along with having an optimistic POV, it's also crucial that the guy you're seeing can make you laugh. "It's an important stress valve for any couple," says Les Parrott, PhD, coauthor of "Trading Places." "Having a sense of humor helps you weather the rough patches that you'll inevitably encounter together." It shows that he is able to let loose and doesn't take things too seriously. Plus, you'll have a better time together if you can see the funny side of things.

3. He's Open to Changing for You It's true you may not be able to change a man, but a guy should want to change for you. If a facet of his behavior irks you (for example, maybe he's not attentive enough in certain circumstances),

he should be game to hear you out, listen to how you'd like him to do things differently, and then act on those suggestions. "When a guy is truly in love, he is more self-reflective and will work on the aspects of himself that bother you," says Diana Kirschner, PhD, author of "Love in 90 Days." "Studies have found that successful married couples change each other quite a bit over time." More important, a man needs to have the capacity to transform and grow with you -- e.g., he takes an interest in going to art galleries with you, even if he's more of a couch-and-ESPN kind of guy. "If he's not willing to expand his interests to mesh with yours, you're going to outpace him," explains Kirschner. "It's likely you'll grow restless, and the relationship will become stale." 4-He's Still a Little Mysterious The beginning of a relationship is always exciting because you're just getting to know each other. But even after the newness wears off, it's essential that a man keeps you guessing. "If you can never quite pin down what makes him tick, that's actually a healthy thing," says Kirschner. Although at first you might feel more bonded to a guy who shares tons of personal info with you, over time, you risk losing the intrigue that pulled you to him initially. You might start to see him as more of a friend than a romantic partner. Of course, you want him to open up about topics like his family, but he should keep some boundaries too. Relating every detail of his life (think updates on his nasty toe fungus) is relationship-killing TMI. A good gauge in the early stages of coupledom: He doesn't spill all about his pals. "It's an indicator that he understands how to keep things private," says Kirschner. 5. He's Responsible with Money Besides giving you a heads-up about money-related conflicts you might encounter in the future (one of the topics long-term couples argue about most), how a guy handles cash reveals a lot about his character. Positive signs: He keeps the receipt after paying for a meal, or you notice several credit-card offers in his stack of mail (it may indicate he has good credit). "A man who doesn't track his money shows a lack of patience and self-control," says Dobransky. "In fact, guys who are financially reckless share many traits with men who cheat." But you also don't want to be with a tightwad. If a dude doesn't splurge now and then, it may mean he'll be stingy in other ways, such as compromising during a fight. Most people who meet my wife quickly conclude that she is remarkable. They are right about this. She is smart, funny and thoroughly charming. Often, after hearing her speak at some function or working with her on a project, people will approach me and say something to the effect of, you know, I think the world of you, Barack, but your wife, wow!

Someone asked me why women don't gamble as much as men do, and I gave the commonsensical reply that we don't have as much money. That was a true and incomplete answer. In fact, women's total instinct for gambling is satisfied by marriage. Gloria Steinem

Understand men’s fear of commitment: You've been with your boyfriend for several months or years and you're sitting in a restaurant for girls' night out. The inevitable question arises as you bite into your first jumbo shrimp: "Why hasn't he asked you to marry him yet?" Cocktail sauce drips from the corner of your mouth as you defend your boyfriend from this barrage. Somewhere in the back of your mind you know your friends are asking a valid question. What is this guy waiting for? Is he stringing me along? Why does he run from engagement talk quicker than people in Pamplona from the running of the bulls? Today is your day for answers. Here are the top five reasons guys fear commitment and what you can do to overcome them. Reason #1: Saying "yes" to you means saying "no" to the rest of the world Let's say he asks you to marry him on a Saturday. Then on Monday he's walking to work and a beautiful woman approaches. As a swinging single, he had the freedom to drop a cute one-liner. Now this knockout is off limits. The bottom line here is your man wonders if you truly are the best person he'll ever meet or just the best person to date. This quandary can stop a waffling guy in his tracks. The Solution: Face this issue head-on and admit to your man that the world of women does not magically become ugly the moment he puts a ring on your finger. It's okay to find other women attractive, just like you could take note of a cute guy at the gym. The point is you're mutually agreeing to not act on these impulses. Reason #2: Women in magazines and on TV look so perfect Thanks to airbrushing and perfect lighting, women in magazines, movies and TV portray an unattainable look. Your man might mistakenly believe these Hollywood starlets wake up in the morning actually looking like this. He then takes one look at you in sweatpants and suddenly develops a new crush on the Revlon model in Cosmo. The Solution: All you need to do is find a magazine or website that exposes celebrities without their makeup. These candid photos, complete with skin blemishes, non-designer clothes and unkempt hair, will remind your man that celebrities are regular people too. Then book a romantic evening together where you both dress up elegantly. One look at you in your finest duds and your man will soon realize you too can look like a Hollywood starlet.

Reason #3: I'm not ready to give up guys' night out (i.e., my fraternity days) From college to the present, your guy has locked in Friday night with the guys. Sports and drinking dominate the night as does hitting on women. Suddenly Fridays transform into dinners with couples, movie rentals and family gatherings. Your man just might miss his high-flying single days and feel jealous of his unattached buddies. The Solution: Who says marriage means the end of male friendships? Let your man know he can still get together with the guys -- maybe not every Friday night, but certainly one or two times a month. You can do the same with the girls. Remove the need to hit on members of the opposite sex and you're good to go. Besides, these same-gender relationships are healthy. Reason #4: Relationships shouldn't require so much work "All we do is talk." We all know some guys have a penchant for avoiding deep conversation. Many guys have friends who claim they never fight with their spouses, or maybe he had parents who shielded him from marital tension. A few too many challenging conversations and your man may wonder if all the stress is a sign of a bad relationship. The Solution: Quality communication is all about picking the right moment. A long, difficult day at work is not the best precursor to a difficult conversation. Relaxing on the couch, in a lowstress moment, is a much better option. You can also seek out another couple who is willing to be honest about relationship tension that all couples face. Seeing this other couple deal with the same issues might help him realize you're not alone in facing relationship hurdles. Reason #5: I'm not sure if the things that bother me about you are deal-breakers Your man loves 38 things about you, but three things about you really annoy him. He can't decide if the 38 lovable qualities outweigh the three annoyances, or if ultimately those three things will drive him batty. The Solution: You've got to remind your man that sooner or later everyone has the potential to be annoying. Family, roommates, colleagues and spouses all have qualities that can grate on you from time to time. And here's a news flash: he has some annoying qualities too. Marriage is all about accepting a few flaws for the greater good of an otherwise healthy relationship.

However good or bad you feel about your relationship, the person you are with at this moment is the "right" person, because he or she is the mirror of who you are inside. - Deepak Chopra

relationships Some of the biggest challenges in come from the fact that most people enter a relationship in order to get something. They're trying to find someone who's going to make them feel good. In reality, the only way a relationship will last is if you see your relationship as a place that you go to give, and not a place that you go to take. - Anthony Robbins

Seven signs of a troubled relationship: When couples wait too long to ask for help, the relationship may be beyond repair. The sooner help is sought, the better chance there is of recovering, saving and actually strengthening the relationship. This includes issues dealing with affairs or other types of betrayal. The longer we wait, the more entrenched we get in destructive patterns and resentment and all hope for change is lost. At a certain point we don't even want change... we just want to be done. The seven warning signs that a relationship is in trouble are: 1. Fighting has become the rule rather than the exception to the rule. 2. You find yourself looking outside the relationship for comfort, care, and understanding. 3. You can't remember what attracted you to your partner in the first place. 4. There is little or no intimacy in your relationship -- sleeping in different rooms or different beds, lack of interest, anger, and hostility so that intimacy is out of the question. 5. Spending very little time together, friends seem to be more important than your partner. 6. Reactions to situations are disproportionate to the content of the disagreement (i.e., feeling your partner doesn't love you because she/he didn't like the meal you cooked). 7. Feeling helpless and hopeless to change anything. Feeling done with the relationship, but unclear as to where to go and what to do. Feelings of anger, resentment, pain, and desperation are predominant. If any or all of these describe you in your relationship, your relationship is in trouble and it won't be long before something more drastic happens, such as an affair, arguments get worse and inflate with intensity, increased jealousy, silence for longer periods of time, and sometimes even physical and/or verbal abuse. Before your relationship reaches that critical crisis point, look at the warning signs and do something before it's too late:

1. Seek psychotherapy 2. Read books 3. Talk to a spiritual/religious advisor Without help, the relationship will never get better with time; once a certain level of resentment, anger, and hostility hits, it will simply get worse and worse. Avoiding a total crisis and saving the relationship is done by knowing when you're in trouble and taking immediate action.

The secret to a good marriage, as far as I am concerned, is a joke I make: Keep the fights clean and the sex dirty. MICHAEL J. FOX,

CHAPTER FOUR The Four C's of a Long-Term Relationship: I am including in this chapter Debbie Seko’s article which she wrote in a superb style and did justice to the subject. Here is what she says about the four C’s of long term relationship. How many couples do you know who have been married to the same person for 20, 30, 40 years or more? How many do you know who have been at the same job for 15, 20, 25 years or more? Most of us could probably count on one hand the number of people we know that fit into one or the other of these categories. Why does it seem that long-term relationships are on the decline in America today? Why is it we can't seem to maintain personal and business relationships for any length of time? Statistics indicate that 40 to 50% of marriages today are ending in divorce. I believe the cause for failed relationships in today's society is due to a lack of what I call the four C's of marriage 1. Commitment 2. Communication 3. Compromise 4. Consideration. Commitment is like a contract. Whenever you sign a contract, regardless of what it's for, purchasing a vehicle, borrowing money, whatever, what are doing? In most cases you are committing to certain terms for a certain length of time. Like contracts relationships must have commitment. You cannot enter a relationship and expect it to last if you are not 100% committed going in. How many times have you heard or perhaps even said things like, "I've decided to get married and if it doesn't work I'll just get a divorce." Or "I'll give this job a shot, if I don't like it I can always quit." No matter what it is your entering into if you haven't made your mind up to be totally committed then your chances of it lasting is zero to none.

Then there's the myth that love can overcome anything. This is indeed a beautiful thought but unfortunately it just isn't true. Regardless of how much you love, your spouse, your job, your friend, love is not always going to be enough. Without total commitment there is no way you're going to make it through all the trials that are going to come your way. Just because you love your job doesn't mean it will last. The first time you get ticked off at the boss or a co-worker or someone gets a promotion you feel you deserved, no matter how much you love your job if you're not totally committed to doing whatever it takes to stick it out you are going to quit. It works the same way in personal relationships. When the going gets tough and it will, if you're not 100% committed you will soon find yourself looking for a way out. Take school for instance. How likely are you to complete a 2, 4 or 6-year college program unless you've committed yourself to doing whatever it takes? Without commitment most of us would drop out in first year. Commitment is the first step in achieving a long-term relationship, whether it is in business, school or in our personal lives, but commitment is not enough in and of itself. You must also be able to communicate. According to everything I've read written by psychologists they all seem to agree that one of the major problems with relationships today is lack of communication. Communicating involves much more than simply sending a verbal message. Communication also means listening. You can talk all day long but if your message is not being heard then you are not communicating. If someone else is speaking to you and you do not listen then you are not communicating. In order to maintain a long-term relationship we need to be aware of how we communicate, what we're communicating not only with our words but also with our body language and we need to learn and be willing to receive whatever feedback is returned. Think back to when you were first dating, or when you first got married, or when you first started a new job. It seemed you where always communicating. You probably talked in length about things like your likes, your dislikes, your dreams, your goals. And weren't you eager to listen and really hear what your partner had to say, or even your co-workers. Stephen Artburn listed several principles for good communication in his book, Winning at Work Without Losing at Love. Three of those rules are: Avoid name-calling and placing blame, be aware of your body language, and be conscious of when to use the word "I" and when to use the word "You". For example: instead of saying "Johnny you are such a slob. Why can't you ever pick up after

yourself?" Try saying something like, "Johnny I would appreciate it if you could help me out by picking up your clothes and putting them in the hamper." Sometimes simply by thinking before we speak and learning to phrase things in such a way that the other person doesn't feel put down we can resolve a lot of issues. The minute you start blaming someone, they automatically get defensive and communication stops. In order to keep communications flowing in a relationship you need to communicate daily; not just about the big things but the little things as well. How often do we tell our friends or even acquaintances about something our child did or something we saw or felt but never shared that same little tidbit of information with our closest partner? How often do you ask your friends or co-workers questions to find out little things about them that will help us to know and understand them better? We should use this same tactic with our partners. Don't assume just because you've been with someone for a while that you know everything about him or her. I've been married twenty years and though I believe I know my husband fairly well, I feel certain there are simple everyday questions you could ask me about him that I probably could not answer. The third thing I believe is imperative to any long-term relationship is compromise. It has been my experience that most men have a harder time with this then women. Maybe it's just in our nature to be more compromising then men, I'm not sure. But what I am sure of is, no relationship is going to stand the test of time without a willingness to compromise. No two people are exactly alike so all relationships from time to time or going to be faced with situations where one or the other has to be willing to give in. I'm not saying you should compromise your beliefs in order to maintain a long-term relationship. What I am saying is we have to be willing to analyze the situation and come to an agreement that both parties can live with. My mother once told me that the word Love does not include the letter "I". In the beginning of a relationship it seems easy to compromise. "Where do you want to eat? Oh, anyplace is fine with me whatever you want. Well I want whatever you want." Or, what movie do you want to go see? I want to see want ever you want to see. You pick." How far do we usually get into a relationship before these responses turn into things like? "We always go there I want to go here." Or I really hate science fiction movies I'd rather see a comedy." Compromise is probably one of the hardest things to maintain in a long-term relationship. Why? Because once

the newness of a relationship wears off, and it will, then compromise becomes work. Once you learn the art of compromising you'll find that when your partner sees your willingness to compromise he or she in return will also become more willing to compromise. The fourth C is consideration. Just how important is consideration in a relationship? Think about the people that we are considerate of everyday; our friends, our neighbors, or teachers, or employers, or co-workers, our fellow students. If we were not considerate of all these people in some way how hard would our life be? The majority of the time when ever you've been considerate of someone they usually try to show you the same consideration. Consideration seems to breed consideration. Being considerate means being thoughtful, respectful, thankful and willing to put the other person first. How often do we tell our partner's thank you? When your spouse or partner does something that is routine say like taking the trash out, or washing the car do you tell them thank you, or do you wait and save your thank-you's for the big things? How often do you take into consideration what kind of day your partner had before you bombard them with first one thing and then another. Sometimes when we receive negative responses from others it's simply because the timing was bad. I believe that in order grow a relationship must be sprinkled with consideration in order to make it grow and blossom.

Now that you know the four C's to establishing a long-term relationship, commitment, communication, compromise, and consideration, there is one more thing you must know. None of these are achieved by accident. It takes work. Sure you’re going to slip from time to time but the key is not giving up. So you have an argument with your spouse or co-worker and you realize, hey that could have been handled differently. If I had been a little more considerate or if I had communicated my feelings better things may have turned out differently. So do you throw in the towel? No. You vow that next time you'll take moment to think before you speak or act. Relationships are an ongoing work in progress. You just keep working till you get it right. I'd like to leave you with a quote by Ronni Lundy; "Onion soup sustains. The process of making it is somewhat like the process of learning to love. It requires commitment, extraordinary effort, time and it will make you cry."

How you end something as profound and important as a marriage is a reflection of how you live your life--financially, emotionally, and spiritually. SUZE ORMAN, The Road to Wealth

The dreaded D word or Divorce/Break up: Divorce lawyer Wendy Jaffe reveals the most common causes of marriage failure. She calls them the nine symptoms of divorce or break-up. 1. The first symptom -- you won't be surprised to learn -- is sex; we'll go back later and we'll talk about exactly how sex is a factor in divorce. 2. The second symptom of divorce is unrealistic expectations: people really have, in this day in age, still, this very 'fantasy' idea about marriage -- that love is all you need. Love is not all you need and there are a lot of unrealistic expectations of people who have that view. 3. The third symptom of divorce is money -- and this is a really interesting symptom because it's not what people think: people have this perception that couples that don't have a lot of money are the ones that get divorced. But I can tell you from practicing in a Beverly Hills law firm: the amount of money does not cause the divorce; it's how people handle that money. 4. The fourth symptom of divorce is communication. And, again that won't be a surprise to people, but we've heard really vague descriptions of communication in the past, and in my book I try to tell people exactly how and where the communication breaks down. 5. Symptom number five is control. This is really a big one, and I heard this from a lot of divorce lawyers. It comes from everything from your spouse controlling you to in-laws trying to control you. Wherever the power's not balanced in the relationship, it really causes problems. 6. The sixth symptom of divorce is what I call mental challenges and physical addictions. These include things like mental illness, when people get depressed, when people have other types of mental disorders or physical addictions. This is really a major cause of divorce, from alcoholism to drugs like weed, cocaine etc 7. Exactly. Depression. You really have a big secret in America: how many people have mental issues and how many people have drug issues and sometimes those two are related.

The seventh symptom of divorce has to do with people who are on a second, third or forth marriage. Think of Elizabeth Taylor here. And they have very unique symptoms of divorce because even though they've learned from their first relationship, they have a whole new set of problems involving stepchildren, exhusbands and ex-wives. Those really cause a lot of problems for a second or third marriage. 8. The eighth symptom of divorce is a real catchall: I call it growing apart. It's everything from what I call the 'kid-aholics' -- women who are nearly exclusively focused on their children and don't spend any time on their husband -- to having completely different goals and values, to having different hobbies and interests. 9. The ninth symptom of divorce is one that a lot of attorneys mention: a simple lack of commitment. Many divorce attorneys feel that people get divorced today for reasons that are … at the drop of a hat. Things that are just so minor that cause people to walk away from marriage. It's this whole 'grass is greener' feeling in America today that is just not the case.

Relationships-of all kinds-are like sand held in your hand. Held loosely, with an open hand, the sand remains where it is. The minute you close your hand and squeeze tightly to hold on, the sand trickles through your fingers. You may hold onto some of it, but most will be spilled. A relationship is like that. Held loosely, with respect and freedom for the other person, it is likely to remain intact. But hold too tightly, too possessively, and the relationship slips away and is lost.”

Sometimes I think marriage licenses should be like driver's licenses. They expire after a number of years, and in order to keep going you have to renew. Wouldn't that be kind of genius? It would force you both to look at the relationship, and if it's not working, the marriage would expire so you could go on your merry way, or on the positive side of it, you could look at each other and say we really want to renew. What a way to keep it fresh!! JENNY MCCARTHY,

CHAPTER FIVE Coping with a Breakup or Divorce: It’s never easy when a marriage or other significant relationship ends. Whatever the reason for the split – and whether or not you wanted it – the breakup of a long-term, committed relationship can turn your whole world upside down and trigger all sorts of painful and unsettling feelings. But there are things you can do to get through this difficult time. Even in the midst of the sadness and stress of a divorce or breakup, you have an opportunity to learn from the experience and grow into a stronger, wiser person. Why do breakups hurt so much, even when the relationship is no longer good? A divorce or breakup is painful because it represents the loss, not just of the relationship, but also of shared dreams and commitments. Romantic relationships begin on a high note of excitement and hope for the future. When these relationships fail, we experience profound disappointment, stress, and grief. A breakup or divorce launches us into uncharted territory. Everything is disrupted: your routine and responsibilities, your home, your relationships with extended family and friends, and even your identity. A breakup brings uncertainty about the future. What will life be like without your partner? Will you find someone else? Will you end up alone? These unknowns often seem worse than an unhappy relationship. Recovering from a breakup or divorce is difficult. However, it’s important to know (and to keep reminding yourself) that you can and will move on. But healing takes time, so be patient with yourself. Support from others is critical to healing after a breakup or divorce. You might feel like being alone, but isolating yourself will only make this time more difficult. Don’t try to get through this on your own.

Reach out to trusted friends and family members. People who have been through painful breakups or divorces can be especially helpful. They know what it is like and they can assure you that there is hope for healing and new relationships.

Spend time with people who support, value, and energize you. As you consider who to reach out to, choose wisely. Surround yourself with people who are positive and who truly listen to you. It’s important that you feel free to be honest about what you’re going through, without worrying about being judged, criticized, or told what to do.

Get outside help if you need it. If reaching out to others doesn’t come naturally, consider seeing a counselor or joining a support group. The most important thing is that you have at least one place where you feel comfortable opening up.

Cultivate new friendships. If you feel like you have lost your social network along with the divorce or breakup, make an effort to meet new people. Join a networking group or special interest club, take a class, get involved in community activities, or volunteer at your school, synagogue, or church.

Make time each day to nurture yourself. Help yourself heal by scheduling daily time for activities you find calming and soothing. Go for a walk in nature, listen to music, enjoy a hot bath, get a massage, read a favorite book, take a yoga class, or savor a warm cup of tea.

Pay attention to what you need in any given moment and speak up to express your needs. Honor what you believe to be right and best for you even though it may be different from what your ex or others want. Say "no" without guilt or angst as a way of honoring what is right for you.

Stick to a routine. A divorce or relationship breakup can disrupt almost every area of your life, amplifying feelings of stress, uncertainty, and chaos. Getting back to a regular routine can provide a comforting sense of structure and normalcy.

Take a time out. Try not to make any major decisions in the first few months after a separation or divorce, like starting a new job or moving to a new city. If you can, wait until you’re feeling less emotional so that you can make better decisions.

Avoid using alcohol, drugs, or food to cope. When you’re in the middle of a breakup, you may be tempted to do anything to relieve your feelings of pain and loneliness. But

using alcohol, drugs, or food as an escape is unhealthy and destructive in the long run. It’s essential to find healthier ways of coping with painful feelings.

Explore new interests. A divorce or breakup is a beginning as well as an end. Take the opportunity to explore new interests and activities. Pursuing fun, new activities gives you a chance to enjoy life in the here-and-now, rather than dwelling on the past.

Learning important lessons from a divorce or breakup In times of emotional crisis, there is an opportunity to grow and learn. Just because you are feeling emptiness in your life right now, doesn’t mean that nothing is happening or that things will never change. Consider this period a time-out, a time for sowing the seeds for new growth. You can emerge from this experience knowing yourself better and feeling stronger. In order to fully accept a breakup and move on, you need to understand what happened and acknowledging the part you played. It’s important to understand how the choices you made affected the relationship. Learning from your mistakes is the key to not repeating them. Some questions to ask yourself:

Step back and look at the big picture. How did you contribute to the problems of the relationship?

Do you tend to repeat the same mistakes or choose the wrong person in relationship after relationship?

Think about how you react stress and deal with conflict and insecurities. Could you act in a more constructive way?

Consider whether or not you accept other people the way they are, not the way they could or “should” be.

Examine your negative feelings as a starting point for change. Are you in control of your feelings, or are they in control of you?

You’ll need to be honest with yourself during this part of the healing process. Try not to dwell on who is to blame or beat yourself up over your mistakes. As you look back on the relationship, you have an opportunity to learn more about yourself, how you relate to others, and the problems

you need to work on. If you are able to objectively examine your own choices and behavior, including the reasons why you chose your former partner, you’ll be able to see where you went wrong and make better choices next time. Rebound relationships: A rebound relationship is one that occurs shortly after the break-up of a significant love relationship. If you are in a relationship but have distanced yourself emotionally from your relationship partner, you may begin a rebound relationship before you even leave the relationship you are in. If you move quickly from a long lasting relationship into another relationship then you are probably in a “rebound relationship." A rebound relationship is a distraction. It is a connection to another person that keeps us from having to experience the full extent of the emotional pain of our resent break – up. It is a misguided attempt to move on with our lives. Many people will jump back into the dating scene because they fear being alone. It’s a quick fix, one in which we can drown out our pain by reveling in the emotional intensity and passion of a new found love. It can be a a lot more fun that dealing with the misery of a recently broken heart. If you handle them like you have some sense, rebound relationships aren’t necessarily bad things; however, if you DON’T handle them correctly, they can be nightmares. Chances are, you and your girlfriend have just broken up and you’re keen to avoid anything that could lead you running into another relationship – especially a potentially disastrous relationship. So, it’s only natural you want to learn how to avoid rebound relationships. Some women are down for one-night stands; others, not so much. You might think that by telling a woman you’re just in it for one night is going to turn her off, and, it very well might; however, it’s better to turn off the ones who are likely to get clinging and lure you into a rebound relationship than it is to lie about it and find yourself in that very situation. The best thing you can do to avoid getting involved with someone who’s all wrong for you is to stick to your dating standards. In fact, go ahead and raise them a little just to add a safety buffer. If the person you’re thinking about dating is less kind, less intelligent, less anything at all, that

you’d normally want, stay away. These people don’t make for good relationships, rebound or otherwise.

Spirituality is a domain of awareness. Deepak Chopra.

Relationships and Spirituality Our relationships with others provide many of the most satisfying and frustrating moments of the human experience. On the one hand we are instinctively driven to seek the companionship of our fellow beings, indeed such is the complexity of the modern world that out very survival depends on cooperating with numerous others. But conversely our dealings with other people force us to sacrifice, compromise, inhibit our liberty, and are an endless source of disappointment and anger when our partners fall short of our reasonable expectations. Our relationships take many forms. Family, friends, neighbors, business, acquaintances… Some of these are of our choosing, others just come with the territory. Understanding how to handle each of these relationships effectively will yield a smoother and more fulfilling journey through life. Why are relationships important? From the Spiritual perspective our dealings with others is of the utmost significance and a major part of our raison d’être. The fundamental nature of Spirit comes from Gods ever loving nature Who is the most beneficent and the most merciful. It is who puts love in the heart of even a wild animal for its off springs. The eternal quest of Spirit is for the growth of human race who that there are more and more people on this world who are worshiping the creator, this growth that comes from the interaction between a man and a wife which cannot happen without difference of opinion. Hence we are born as separate entities in physical form that we might play out our roles, ultimately furthering the growth of the children of Adam and Eve. My new found meaning of Marriage is a place where you can be yourself and has breathing space to grow personally and spiritually as and when I want without having to consult my partner about my changes. It is a beautiful place without suffocation, a place where you

can learn and teach each other, a place where you do not feel prohibited and a place where you do not have to log in and log out. JEANETTE DE JONK The paradox of relationships Our relationships with others are hugely paradoxical. The highest emotion of which we are capable is unconditional love, to place the welfare of another higher than our own – no matter what. To experience unconditional love, either towards or from another being is possibly the highest privilege in this world. We may hold it for our nearest and dearest, our parents, our partner, our children… A few more advanced souls may hold it for larger groups, or even the whole of humanity. But this is too tall an order for most. Towards the majority, for whom we sadly don’t hold unconditional love, we are often fiercely competitive. We want the better job, bigger house, faster car etc. than the guy across the street. Sometimes, as a species, we’ll resort to the most heinous acts to further our welfare at the expense of others. But for all the bad stuff, acts of altruism towards strangers greatly outnumber those of hostility, as witnessed by the level of charitable donations, or the level of response to natural disasters such as earthquakes or tsunamis. Even holding the door for someone to enter a building demonstrates our basic kindness. Darwin highlighted the merits of competitiveness in his theory of evolution. The comforts of the material plane are available in proportion to worldly success, and by implication this means doing better than the next man. But being the “higher” species carries with it the concept of noblesse oblige. Most obviously in developed societies this comes in the form of progressive taxation – the more you earn, the more tax you pay! But consider how many wealthy folk voluntarily support numerous good causes. The conflict between our underlying and eternal brotherhood and our limited individuality and rivalry is the cause of much difficulty in relationships. Awareness of this conflict, along with that

of our innate feeling towards others, is the first step to building and maintaining successful and fulfilling intimate relationships.

Know thyself Some of us are more inclined to pursue relationships than others. For some socializing is a pleasure, for others it ranges from being a chore to the painfully unpleasant. The insightful psychologist Jung categorized these types as extrovert and introvert respectively. Knowing where you stand on this continuum and adapting accordingly will assist greatly in your inevitable dealings with your partner. The golden rule Remember, ultimately we are all human beings the best of creation, but while incarnate we assume the role of competitive individuals. Your role on earth is to try your best in your chosen field, but in your dealings with others let your conscience be your guide. Ultimately, the ethic of reciprocity should form the foundation of your relationships. Expressed by Jesus as: “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.” This ethic recurs throughout all major faiths and philosophies. The focus of all Americans continues to be the extraordinary event of the global financial crises we face. These are not the only experiences that continues to weigh upon so many of us. Divorce, business failure, loss of a job, sickness, the death of a child, and every unexpected or painful circumstance in your life is a difficult experience. The impact from any one of these events can surely strain even the very best relationships. This is an age of Transformation and Awakening to our often hidden yet our fullest potentials. We are all being called to look deeply at our lives and to make a commitment to discovering what it really means to be a human-being; a Parent; a Spouse; a Partner; a Business Owner; an Employee; a Friend; or a Neighbor, and work toward creating and supporting a more sustainable future for ourselves and for our children.

This chapter emphasizes on the possibility for creating and enjoying fulfilling and sustainable relationships. Through the development of skillful and effective means including new communication and awareness skills, and achieve wholeness and spiritual growth. If we focus on viewing relationships as a spiritual practice. In the process, we will develop the innate spiritual potential we all possess for creating fulfilling and sustainable relationships. Like Edward Ericson said “Ethical Humanism is primarily an attitude about human beings, their worth, and the significance of their lives. It is concerned with the nature and quality of living; the character and creativity of our relationships. Because of this concern, humanism spontaneously flowers into a spiritual movement in its own right”.

The focus of all Americans continues to be the extraordinary event of the global financial crises we face. These are not the only experiences that continue o weigh upon so many of us. Divorce, business failure, loss of a job, sickness, e death of a child, and every unexpected or painful circumstance in your life is a difficult experience. The impact from any one of these events can surely strain even the very best relationships. This is an age of Transformation and Awakening to our often hidden yet our fullest potentials. We are all being called to look deeply at our lives and to make a commitment to discovering what it really means to be a human-being; a Parent; a Spouse; a Partner; a Business Owner; an Employee; a Friend; or a Neighbor, and work toward creating and supporting a more sustainable future for growth. We will focus on viewing relationships as a spiritual practice. In the process, we will develop the innate spiritual potential we all possess for creating fulfilling and sustainable relationships.

Sex is like snow, you never know how many inches you're going to get or how long it will last

Sex is an emotion in motion

CHAPTER SIX The rules of engagement: KEEP THE FIRE BURNING AND KEEP IT SIMPLE AND STUPID Yes everything has a language and the language of love is sex. Great sex can guarantee a happy relationship and I felt compelled to scribble a few words on this topic before we reach towards the ending of this book. As human beings we are very adventurous and curious creatures and try to experiment a lot but I would say don’t try to re invent the wheel. Keep it simple and stupid and you will never have any problems in your marital life or PMS (partner’s marital stress). Here I would list the rules of engagement which I call the sexual etiquettes. Guys: Great sex starts in the kitchen! Wash the dishes, takeout the trash, give her a break, let her know she's appreciated. Romance and exhaustion do not mix -- think about it! (Besides, standing there, side by side, washing and drying those dishes, hands could get to roamin' and motors could get to tickin' ...the most amazing things do happen!) 2. Gals: Tell that old fool just exactly what you've been waiting for! Most males are notoriously poor mind readers, they just don't "get it". So tell him! "A little softer" or "let me show you" goes much further than, "How come you never know what I want?" 3. Guys: Take time! Sex is about fun, relaxation, laughter and love -- this is not a competition or a 50-yard dash to the finish line! Start slow, let it build, then finish strong. A glass of wine, maybe some music, a backrub, even a few minutes of silence can shift the mood and make things verrrry interesting!! 4. Gals: Make Time! How often does sex happen last thing at night, with two exhausted people trying to find each other in the dark? Or, first thing in the morning, half asleep, with bad breath? If sex is important, why not treat it like getting your haircut or picking the kids up after school? In other words, schedule time, put it on the calendar and treat it as a key part of keeping yourself and the family running smoothly.

5. Guys: Think about your 4th date with the woman you love, after you were well acquainted but everything still felt new and exciting. Remember thinking about it, scheduling it, making dinner reservations? Remember being on time? Did you bring flowers; maybe plan something romantic or special? Remember taking a shower and using cologne? Well, guess what -- she's still special and she's still waiting! 6. Gals: If you want great sex, seduce him! This is not rocket science! Most guys are sooooo easy. They're "visual" -- show him what he what he likes. They're easily flattered -- whisper what he wants to hear. Touch him right there, or if you prefer, you prefer, right THERE!!! Tease him, just don't be a tease. 7. Guys: Surprise her. Women love that. And, the beauty is, almost anything will work. Surprise her with flowers, with a card, get a baby-sitter for the evening, put a note on the windshield of her car. Even surprise her by cleaning the bathroom! Almost anything will work, just be kind, be gentle, and put a little thought into it. 8. Gals: With all the talk about "size", remember that a man's biggest sex organ is his imagination -- so use your own! Everyone has fantasies -- some romantic, some kinky, maybe even a few that are slightly dangerous or outrageous. What are yours? And, what are his? Why not play dress-up? Why not go on a date with someone "new"? 9. Guys: I just told the gals you have a great imagination -- don't make me a liar! Use it! How long has it been since you had sex in the back seat of a Ford? Would she enjoy a date with a spy? Being seduced by a plumber or "the cable guy"? Is your shower big enough for two? Ever done it at the office -- how about her office? 10. Gals: Take time to add variety and spice with tasteful magazines, toys, movies and beautiful lingerie. For most people (including men) pornography quickly turns into a turn-off, but a little satin and lace, maybe some sensual pictures or using common household items in a whole new way can sure add delight to the old routine. Explore, experiment, lock the bedroom door and play some brand new games! As they say, "Just do it!"

For some couples the importance of sex in a relationship is completely subjective. What one person might consider a crucial factor, another may dismiss altogether. How much sex matters within your own relationship is something only you can decide. Generally, the longer a couple has been together, the more important sex become - for a number of reasons. However, some women and men think it’s the key to a great connection. While many women joke that sex is more important to men, this is not always the case. There are many, many women who are ready to go at any moment, willing to share an intimate moment with their partner whenever possible. If you and your partner have sex frequently, you may consider it a huge part of your lives. Sex is not just physical; it can also be an emotional and mental adventure that brings you closer to your partner. On the other hand, if you and your partner rarely have sex, it may sit at the bottom of your priority list. If this works for the relationship, then there’s nothing to worry about. However, if infrequent contact is causing a problem, then sex may be more important to you than you think. Even though you may steer clear of the issue, it might be time to raise these concerns with your partner. In many cases, you may discover that something is bothering your partner, leading to a decrease in sexual contact. Unfortunately, many women are pressured by peers and society to have sex x-number of times per week or per month. Imagine yourself among a group of friends, divulging your deepest of secrets. One friend reveals that she and her partner find time for intercourse at least once per day. You soon start to worry about your weekly adventure and go home with your timeframe weighing heavily on your mind. It’s a very common situation. Friends, authors, and experts all have their own ideas about what constitutes a healthy relationship, but their opinions are simply that: opinions. If you’re happy with your sex life, then you have nothing to worry about. Even if you and your partner are practicing abstinence, or you are saving yourself for marriage, the choice is yours. While sex may not be a significant part of your life now, it will likely gain importance as time goes on. Let your own conscience be your guide. If you and your partner are content with the situation – no matter what that is – then you may have already found your answer.

The husband who wants a happy marriage should learn to keep his mouth shut and his checkbook open. GROUCHO MARX

CHAPTER 7: The final word: No matter where you are where you live what religious beliefs you follow the effects of a healthy and harmonious relationship between a man and a woman will have lasting effects on themselves their children and the society as a whole. Strong positive relationships are essential to achieving our success. We are in almost constant contact with others and we should make every contact an opportunity to strengthen our social skills and reinforce our relationships. We can benefit a lot from healthy long-term relationship. Healthy relationships are fun and make you feel good about yourself. You can have a healthy relationship with anyone in your life, including your family, friends and dating partners. The relationships that you make in your teen years will be a special part of your life and will teach you some of the most important lessons about who you are. Healthy relationships are essential to our happiness and emotional health. They also have a positive effect on our physical health. It will influence everything from heart health to agerelated health issues. Maintaining healthy relationships is not easy but it can be done. In healthy relationship, we trust each other. Once we experience trust with others, we can be honest about our weaknesses and shortcomings because we know that we will be accepted for who we are, without judgment or criticism. If you maintain a healthy relationship, you can get support from your partners. Our lives go through many changes and difficulties. In either case, they often make us uncomfortable and challenge us to grow and become more than we were before. Healthy relationships give us the support and encouragement we need to rise to new and different challenges. Having someone who are willing to listen silently when you are feeling down or frustrated and want to 'vent' gives you the freedom to express yourself. Sometimes you just need to get something off your chest without feeling like you have to watch every word you say.

Individuals in long-term relationships have a history of shared experiences that build a mutual understanding so they 'get you' without a lot of explanation. If you have a healthy relationship, there is always someone to call on when you need a hand. Everyone, from time to time, needs a hand from a friend, colleague, peer, or family member. This can be in the form of advice, a new job, or assistance with a particular project in which you need to call on another peoples' expertise. Sharing your life with friends who you trust, who accept, understand and support you reduces stress because you have camaraderie and, therefore, less potential for interpersonal conflicts. Good relationships bring about the best in work teams and families by reducing the anxieties that cause stress and, at the same time, good relationships cultivate a sense of well-being and emotional security. Having good relationships mean that there is a mutual like for one another. Being around people you like and who like you create situations that are harmonious, supportive, and well, happy. You have an overall feeling of satisfaction in your life. In a relationship (be it romantic or business), there will invariably be times where you disagree about things. Before you argue about it, think about whether it matters enough to have this particular conflict resolved. Does it really matter whether he’ll pick his mother or you if you’re both drowning in a river? When was the last time that actually happened? In general, if a conflict doesn’t kill you or limit your freedom or diminish your existence too much, then it’s really not that important (yes, most things aren’t that important). The main point to realize is that the other person is not you. Therefore, there will always be some differences. As long as those differences don’t really affect you that much, why get angry over them or make your partner feel bad about them? Remember that two people enter into a relationship because they have something to offer one another. Figure out what that is and focus on that. You can explore other areas to see if you’re compatible, but if not, just leave that new thing alone, and go back to the parts that you have in common! No need to get angry, or sad, or kill each other over it .After all, it’s nobody’s fault that we are different individuals.

Before I say goodbye to you guys I wanted to include this article by dating Editor Brenda Della
Casa for Glamour. I love this article personally because Brenda has addressed the core issues of a modern twenty first century couple. She calls them the:

8 Habits That Wreck Your Relationship
#1. Having an affair with his "potential" Wanting your man to be the best version of himself is admirable, but approaching his looks and personality with "Extreme Makeover" ambition will do little more than erode his self-esteem and leave you both frustrated and resentful. "If you and your partner believe that love means acceptance, pushing him to change and criticizing him is going to send him the opposite message. What he hears is 'you aren't good enough,'" says Nina Atwood, M.Ed., L.P.C., author of "Temptations of the Single Girl: The Ten Dating Traps You Must Avoid." How to rebuild: This is where the old 80-20 rule can be used to the benefit of both of you. Spend at least 80 percent of your time together letting your partner know all the things you adore and appreciate about him, so that when you mention something you don't like, it doesn't feel like another item on a long list of failures. #2. Major mood swings We're living in some pretty anxiety-inducing times, and when life takes a stressful turn, it's not uncommon for couples to start taking out that stress on each other. While the occasional mood swing can -- and should -- be forgiven, being in a relationship with someone whose bad moods outnumber her good ones can make a man run for cover. Wouldn't you do the same? How to rebuild: The next time you catch yourself taking a downturn, take a moment to consider what kind of impact your moods are having on your man and the relationship. "If a woman is too moody, we start to walk on eggshells because we just don't want to deal with the drama," says Matt, 31, of San Diego.

#3. Gossip Talking to pals about your love life is a normal part of friendship, but if you're calling your BFF, your sister, and your mom every time your man pisses you off, you're not only going to wind up embarrassed when the storm passes, you'll also find yourself in a relationship with someone who feels violated and judged. "As a couple, private information should stay private or you risk damaging your reputation as a couple, which in turn may isolate you from others and sever your relationship," says Dan Schawbel, personal branding expert and author of "Me: 2.0." Remember that word of mouth is a powerful force, and it can hurt your reputation if your mate or others brand you as untrustworthy." How to rebuild: The next time you log on to his computer and find an improper download, resist the urge to get on the phone and vent to your top five. Instead, sit down and talk things out with the one person who can help you work through it. If you're not sure how to approach him about a certain topic, sit down and write him a letter. (Helpful hint: Sit on it for 24 hours to make sure it says what you really want to say and isn't just filled with angry words and blame.) #4. Melodrama If you're calling him in tears every time your coworker irritates you, deleting him from Facebook during every argument, and threatening to end the relationship over him leaving the toilet seat up (again!), he might start looking for a new leading lady. "Men have a tendency to really like lowmaintenance girls when it comes to relationships," says Kristian, 35, of New York City. "We're pretty lazy in general, and it's exhausting when you need to work so hard to make someone happy and calm them down every day." How to rebuild: Save the details of your office drama for brunch with the girls, and the next time you feel your inner Heidi Montag moving center stage, take a deep breath and rate the situation on a scale from 1 to 10. If it scores below a 5, let it go and save award-worthy performances for anything above a 9 (cheating, insulting your boss at your holiday party, etc.).

#5. "Mom-ing" him Your man loves his mama and he loves you, but when you're the one telling him to stop playing Guitar Hero, scoffing at his lack of manners, or informing him he can't go out with his pals because he has a "big day tomorrow," it's anything but appealing. He'll not only resent that you're trying to control him, but he'll also likely do what all children do when they're being reprimanded -- rebel. "Scolding your mate creates an unhealthy dynamic of parent-child relationship, which automatically puts your partner into a child role and you into the role of mom," says Jeannine Estes, M.A, a marriage and family therapist and author of "Relationships in the Raw." "Children often do the opposite when they feel as if they don't have a choice, and this is similar for couples." How to rebuild: "Instead of scolding or telling him what to do or not do, try to ask for your needs in a clear and respectful way and avoid using the 'mother' tone," says Estes. "Share with your partner the importance of your needs rather than demanding or scoffing at what he has or hasn't done right. Also, scolding him like you are his mother can put you in a parent role, carrying the relationship without any assistance or partnership." #6. Too much together time Spending time with your guy is one of the best parts of being in a relationship, but there's a big difference between bonding and being joined at the hip. "Many men are attracted to secure, independent women," says Stacey Rosenfeld, Ph.D, a New York City psychologist. "Once in relationships, women may tend to become more dependent, to demand more time and attention of their partners. This can represent a problem, as often men need more space than women." How to rebuild: Remind your guy of the independent and fabulous woman he was initially attracted to by indulging in your favorite pastimes and enjoying your friends without him every once in a while. By flashing your independence, you'll not only give him a chance to miss you but also have interesting things to share with him when you meet up.

#7. Jealousy He lets you know how much he loves you constantly, but that doesn't stop you from checking his phone when he's in the shower or sending every pretty girl he talks to eye-daggers. Although a tiny bit of jealousy in a relationship is normal, accusing your man of cheating and questioning his whereabouts every time he walks in will have him feeling controlled, manipulated, and insulted. "Jealousy in a relationship, or even personally, is the spiritual equivalent of dumping hydrochloric acid on the person," says 33-year-old Marc from Los Angeles. "Just sit back and prepare for the disintegration." How to rebuild: Unless your man has said or done things to make you suspicious, your jealousy is more about your relationship with yourself than you two as a couple. Back away from his computer and check out your own history. Were you betrayed in the past? Did you grow up in a household where the fidelity vows were broken? There might be ways in which you are allowing unresolved issues from your past to dictate your present behavior. If you don't feel you can overcome the green monster on your own, don't be afraid to reach out to a qualified counselor who can help you identify the sources of your insecurity and work through them. #8. Getting too comfortable In the beginning of a relationship, both parties make sure to look and act their best, but as time moves on, the sweatpants come out and routine takes over. "People tend to get lazy in their relationships, and while it's good to be comfortable, no one wants to be boring or to be bored," says Lissa Coffey, author of "What's Your Dosha, Baby? Discover the Vedic Way for Compatibility in Life and Love." How to rebuild: Men love to be seduced and romanced as much as we do, and part of what makes the courtship phase of relationships so fun is the experience of uncovering the mystery of another and trying new things together. "When a woman stops making an effort to look nice for her man and expects him to take care of all the stuff in the romance department, a man begins to feel taken for granted and thinks that she doesn't care about impressing him anymore," says Brian, 30, of New York City. Show your guy he's still worth the effort by surprising him with a break from the ratty T-shirt you wear to bed, a sweet note, or planning a special night out for him

"just because." He'll not only appreciate it, he'll also reciprocate -- and that's a give and take to get excited about

Marriages are always moving from one season to another. Sometimes we find ourselves in winter-discouraged, detached, and dissatisfied; other times we experience springtime, with its openness, hope, and anticipation. On still other occasions we bask in the warmth of summer-comfortable, relaxed, enjoying life. And then comes fall with its uncertainty, negligence, and apprehension. The cycle repeats itself many times throughout the life of a marriage, just as the seasons repeat themselves in nature. GARY D. CHAPMAN,

It has been my pleasure presenting this book to you, I Hope through this book I am able to continue my cause towards harmonious and lasting relationships. If you want to give me your feedback you can email me at soothingsoul_13@hotmail.com or saadullah26@yahoo.com

I do check my emails and reply regularly!!!!!!!

Thanks a lot for reading SAAD ASAD

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