Thursday, 25 October 2012

Proposing marriage - Make your proposal memorable

So you’re thinking of proposing to her…Just the fact that you’ve come this far says a lot about your relationship. You have decided to spend the rest of your life with this one special woman (we’re taking the sexist approach here and assuming it’s a guy’s prerogative to propose!) You might not be the romantic kind but most men like to take a little extra trouble when it comes to proposing to the woman of his dreams. It's almost like that first interview or a really important exam – you want to give it your best. After all, this is a story that might do the rounds for years to come and when she’s recounting it to your offspring or even their offspring, you do want to come out smelling roses!
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Before you start thinking of how you’re actually going to propose and consider some innovative ways of doing it, here are some fundamentals for the novice suitor.
In the unlikely event that you’ve never discussed it before, do at least find out if she’s amenable to the idea of marriage. Since you’ve got this far it's more than likely you know each other well enough, but do try and cover all key issues.
Even the most modern of women like some old-fashioned things. And one of them is asking her father's permission. There’s something very quaint about it and women love the notion that you took the trouble and plucked up the courage to do this.
And from the old fashioned to the traditional. Grace, now married for five years, still resents the fact that her husband Jeremy didn’t go down on bended knee to propose. According to her, "I feel cheated of a special romantic moment." Don’t let it happen to you!
It is often difficult for a man to pick a simple gift for a woman, unless you happen to be particularly good at it. And jewelry is even more mind-boggling. The ring has to be perfect. It’s best not to take chances with this one. So unless you’re absolutely sure of her taste, trick her into revealing it to you. Get a friend of her's to take her on a fantasy shopping expedition of ‘Which-ring-would-I-choose?’ If your lady is fastidious as far as her jewelry is concerned it's best to have all bases covered when it comes to the ring.
Do make it as private, personal and innovative as possible. You may want to shout it from the rooftops but leave that for later. When you do propose, it's probably best to pick a quiet place and choose an appropriate moment. But you know your woman best. If you think she’s one of those who will get a kick from the added attention and drama that a public proposal brings in its wake, do pull out all the stops.
Don’t make the mistake of proposing when you’re still in the initial stages of your relationship. There are some men who are commitment-phobic while there are others who are dying to settle down. If you’re in the latter category, don’t rush into proposing…you may scare her away.
Don’t feel rejected if she says she needs time to think. You may feel slightly dejected that after all your effort and the element of surprise, she didn’t just go with the flow and accept! In fact, this may be an aspect of her personality you never knew – that she likes to take time and weigh her decisions! Be happy you’ve learnt one more side to the woman you’re going to marry, and take heart! If you’ve been right about her, she’ll surely say yes!

1. Proposal Tips
Go all out and plan everything. From what you will wear, to where you will propose, what you will say and all the accompaniments. Do it with panache and flair.
You might wear what you wore on your first date and remind her of it (provided, of course, it still fits) or an outfit you know she adores on you. And while you’re at it, wear your heart on your sleeve! Women just adore men who are transparent about their emotions.
A few proposal/venue suggestions…
2. The site of your first date
There’s nothing more romantic than the place you had your first rendezvous. It brings back so many memories that can only add to another special moment you are going to create in your relationship…asking her to be with you forever!
3. On a holiday
A romantic break for just the two of you is the perfect opportunity to propose. It offers you the isolation and privacy you need to pluck up the guts to propose.
4. At a picnic for two
Kidnap her from her place of work and whisk her off to a secluded spot. Amid the chirping of the birds and serene atmosphere, ask her to be your's.
5. At the top of a ferris wheel
This is a cheap but novel option, especially if your woman has a little girl in her that loves amusement parks and the like.
6. At a romantic dinner for two
This is a tried and true option. It may not be the most innovative approach but you can’t go wrong with this one. Wine and dine her and if you want to really be clichéd, place the ring in the champagne glass but do be alert if she’s not the sip and savor kind. You might end up with an emergency on your hands!
7. With a lavish fireworks display
If she’s the kind who loves to be the cynosure of all eyes make it really spectacular. Let the sparks fly and watch her reaction as you get it done, the way they show it in the movies.
8. The Proposal
"It's only words and words are all I have to take your heart away." So goes a popular song. You may not have a big budget, and can’t afford the luxury of a lavish surprise proposal or a huge solitaire, but if you’ve got a way with words, your proposal is a done deal. Be eloquent or simply speak straight from your heart and she’ll be YOUR'S.
You may want to tell her how very much she means to you, how your life will be meaningless without her in it, the joy she fills you with, how every moment spent with her is special and how you would like to build a lifetime on such moments. This is one occasion when you’ve got to let your heart rule your head!

Dealing with a woman who's a tease

Women love to use their sexuality. It is one of their most powerful weapons to reduce normal, intelligent men to slobbering, salivating idiots. Sometimes it is a woman’s way of exacting payment for whatever grouse they have against the male species in general.
At other times, women may not even have any such devious motives. They simply enjoy flaunting their sexuality and reveling in the effect they have on men. It is a way of reinforcing their attractiveness to themselves.
But there is a certain kind of woman who uses her sexuality for the express purpose of toying with a man. She titillates and has him at her mercy, and just when he thinks he’s got her where he wants her, she withdraws. And leaves him panting for more. This is the tease.
To a lot of women, flirting is a harmless game that a man enjoys as much as they do. What is it that separates a tease from other women who are just flirting casually?
For one, a tease will be more brazen and use sexual overtures, coming on pretty strong. Her whole appearance will scream that she’s there for the taking and will lure a man to approach her. If not, she has enough ammunition to do it herself.
She will dangle the promise of sexual favors, which she knows is bait enough for any red-blooded male, and sufficient to turn him into putty in her hands. She uses her charming wiles to draw him closer and make him think he will get lucky before the night is through. She also has an uncanny knack of sensing the kind of man who will be most susceptible to her charms.
He will buy her drinks and dinner; cater to her every whim, but he will still find himself left out in the cold. And therein lies the catch. Once she has got whatever she is after, attention, money, a freeloading adventure, she will drop him like the proverbial hot potato. Leaving him wonderin what just happened.
Her whole agenda focuses on making empty promises that she definitely does not intend to keep. She builds up the expectations and has him making plans, which of course never come to fruition.
And often, nobody else will do. She has built up the man's hopes to such a level that he has to have her; anybody else is second best. And in his desperation, he is willing to do anything, at the risk of sacrificing his male pride and ego. And being skilled in the game, she knows it and is stringing him along for all she is worth, while secretly laughing at him. What is it that makes a woman a tease?
Is it a form of exacting vengeance because someone has hurt her in the past and she is afraid to trust again? For her teasing is safe, she knows it will never amount to anything on her side. She likes to unleash the passion in a man, while keeping a tight rein on her own emotions. She may be in some way appeasing her darker side, just enjoying the thrill of playing a dangerous game. Or she may just want things easy, content to let some poor sucker pick up the tab, and she will get away with giving nothing in return. And of course, sometimes, there are no deeper motives; just the simple fun that is to be had in leading a man on and making him squirm with discomfort when he has to come away unfulfilled.
But teasing can be a very deadly game, especially if taken too far. There are men who cannot be dangled too long, and when push comes to shove, they will make it clear they are not going away empty-handed. Things can get ugly, especially if he cannot tolerate being made a fool of and can resort to using force to get what he sees as his due.
To avoid landing yourself in this soup that is more trouble than it is worth, become an expert in identifying a tease and stay away. You have to hone your skills, and sometimes this comes from the sheer experience of having been toyed with before and come away a loser.
Or if you are up for it and have yourself developed considerable skill in this sport, take her on. After all, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. If you find yourself already in her radar and she’s set her sights on you, besides turning tail and running, you could try beating her at her own game. But make sure you’re absolutely capable of taking her on; else you might be biting off more than you can chew.
Never give her the pleasure of seeing she’s getting to you. Do not ever show her the effect she’s having on you, either physical or emotional. Flirt with her in return.
Or if you’re really an expert, and you know what you’re doing, let her think she’s having the desired results, and then do an about-face and leave her hanging.
And if at all you happen to have missed all the obvious signs or she’s perfected the art of being subtle (which is all the more dangerous) and you’ve been an easy target thus far, it’s not too late to open your eyes and realize you’re being taken for a ride. You should know you’re too far gone, if your friends tell you she’s trying similar tricks on them, and you refuse to believe it. Give them a fair chance and let them prove it to you. And when it’s confirmed, run as hard and as fast as you can - in the opposite direction.
But if she’s already milked you dry and you think it's payback time, you could take her for a fancy dinner. And on the pretext of visiting the cloakroom, you could discreetly get out…of the restaurant...and her life…leaving her to pick up the tab.

How to Have an Active and Exciting Sex Life after the Arrival of Children

For every couple, to a greater or lesser extent, sex life undergoes a change after the arrival of children. Bodily changes, childcare and multi-tasking leave parents with little time and less energy to engage in lovemaking with the result their sex lives often end up monotonous at best or non-existent at worst. However it is possible to reclaim your amorous selves and bring back the spark in  your marriage. So here are few tips on having an exciting sex life even with kids.
For you and your partner to have a great sex life even as parents, it is necessary that you make it one of the priorities in your relationship. This means acknowledging that it is important to you as a couple and that you both are willing to invest time and energy into it. You may already be burdened with caring for the little ones, never-ending housework and an unhappy boss at the workplace and thus unwilling to put in any more effort anywhere. But remember, a happy sex life leads to a happy relationship which in turn makes you great parents and fulfilled individuals.
Learn to be more flexible
Plans are one of the first casualties of parenthood. As soon as you have tucked in the kids and are ready to snuggle up to your partner, you might hear your two year-old ask for a glass of water or wake up crying because of a bad dream. Rather learn to make plans as you go; for instance when your baby is napping during the day, get together with your partner for a brief romp between the sheets instead of worrying about the dishes piled in the sink. Or when your seven-year old is away at her piano lessons, invite your partner for a lovemaking session instead of rushing out to get the groceries. Also be open to different ways of making love like having a quickie every now and then instead of waiting endlessly for prolonged amorous encounter which you enjoyed when there were no kids.
Take the help of friends and family
Whenever possible, rope in family members and close friends to act as babysitters while you and your partner sneak away for some “us-time”.  Consider leaving toddlers and older kids overnight with grandparents – the latter are sure to have a great time pampering their grandkids while you both can look forward to a long romantic night.
Be open to love
Don’t assume that you have to be “in the mood” to be able to initiate or enjoy sex. Time was when you only had to exchange significant looks with your partner to get physically aroused or at least in an exciting frame of mind. But now with deadlines at work and dinner to prepare, your mind or your body may not always be so receptive to subtle signals. Instead be open to intimacy with your partner whenever the opportunity arises and let your physical arousal be part of the process. That way if sexual climax is prevented by any external exigencies, neither of you need feel frustrated or let down.
Teach kids to respect your privacy
As soon as your kids are old enough to understand that parents are different from their own selves, try to tell them about Mum and Dad needing some “cuddle” time too. Children are great ones for giving and receiving love and thus are likely to understand that parents need love from each other too. Once you are able to teach them that parents are a couple and need their privacy, not only they are less likely to interrupt you and your partner but can be easier to deal with if they do. For instance when your pre-schooler wants to play with Mum, you can ask him to watch Spiderman on his own with the promise to take him out for an ice-cream later.
Help each other
Exhaustion is one of the biggest causes of lack of sexual harmony among couples and more often than not it is the parent who bears the lion’s share of parenting duties who is too worn out to initiate or enjoy sex by the end of the day. No matter what age the kids are, they come with their own responsibilities. Babies and toddlers need to be fed, clothed, bathed and cleaned while school-going ones need to be dropped at school, picked up from soccer practice or have their homework supervised. How you and your partner share these responsibilities and who does how much are best decided by you both but you do need to be clear on who will do what and why. Or else there is bound to be too much burden on one person and the consequent building up of resentment, neither of which are particularly favorable for a happy sex life.
Be open to experimentation
The secret to having an exciting sex life as parents lies in modifying your lovemaking techniques according to the emotional and physical demands of that particular parenting phase. As parents of toddlers, time is at a premium so sharpen your skills required for a quickie. When kids are out for longer periods at school or a friend’s house, then rediscover languorous episodes of love-making which you indulged in as newlyweds.
Change your perspective
Women especially are victims of unrealistic body images which highlight only the skinny look as sexy. If you have been avoiding sex on account of changes in your body, learn to accept them as perfectly natural part of being a mother. If you are a man, make your partner feel desirable precisely because of a fuller, more rounded body. Once you begin to discard artificial notions of what is sexy and attractive, you will find your own body and that of your partner more desirable and consequently sex more enjoyable.

Friday, 21 September 2012

10 Signs That Tell you a Man is Serious About you

Popular culture has often labelled the woman as the more complex partner. References are often made about how it is difficult to understand what’s on a woman’s mind. This may be true when it comes to deciding on what she wants on her birthday or if she really is alright with you going out to get drunk with male friends. But the truth of the matter is that by and large, most women are open about a relationship and its future. They’re always open to discussions and find it easier to talk about their feelings. Unfortunately, most men, however serious, are at the other end of the spectrum and not as transparent about their feelings and intentions. So, how do you tell if the man is truly serious about you? Fortunately, there are certain signs that could be used to decode the man’s behaviour.
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1. He doesn’t play mind games with you
If he says he will drop in to see you, he does. When he makes plans with you for the weekend, he sticks to them. He doesn’t torment you by saying one thing and doing something else. He’s not cold one instant and warm and affectionate the other. If his ex-girlfriend calls him, he tells you about it for the sake of honesty and not in a way that makes you uncomfortable. When a man plays mind games, it’s typically because he doesn’t really care, or because the relationship is casual for him. If your man makes a special effort to be honest and open, that’s a sign of his commitment to the relationship.
2. He wants to know things about you
And it’s not just the regular stuff like “What are your hopes and dreams?” or, “What inspires you to paint?” or “What’s your favourite rock band?” He asks you questions about your childhood, your job, parents, etc. He wants to know what it was like to be the elder sister or, he always asks you how you cope with your long stressful work hours. He is genuinely concerned about your career and asks you about your plans. Even the best actor cannot feign an interest in mundane details such as, “What time did you wake up today?”. or “Did you get enough sleep last night?” If he’s serious about you, he will find all the mundane details interesting.
3. He calls you multiple times everyday
He calls you sometimes for no reason. Even if you’ve met at a coffee shop an hour ago, he calls you after he reaches home, or from the elevator. This behaviour is typically displayed in the first few weeks of the relationship, when everything is new and exciting. However, when you realize that he still calls you just to hear your voice and it’s been about a year since you started going out, you should know that he’s serious about you.
4. If he’s always punctual...
If he’s always punctual, he’s definitely into you. When a man is serious about his girlfriend, he will ensure that she doesn’t have to wait for an hour at the bus stop. He says he will pick you up for dinner and 8 p.m. and calls around 7.55 p.m. to tell you he’s stuck in traffic and will be 15 minutes late, he’s respectful of your feelings. He won’t ever have you hanging around the park for half an hour before he shows up. Most girls constantly find themselves waiting for their boyfriend’s phone call, or for him to pick them up. If you don’t find yourself in that position, you’ve got yourself a winner. 

5. When he listens to you talk
Several girls complain that they can’t talk to their boyfriends and that they just don’t listen. When you spend time with him, he really listens to you. He’s all ears about your problems at work. On the train, he’s not distracted by fellow passengers, but is listening to you intently. You have long chats on the phone where he hangs on to every word you say. You find yourself telling him things that you’ve never told any boyfriend before. He’s not constantly checking his cell phone for messages, when you talk about the day. If your man remembers that it’s your aunt’s birthday in a couple of weeks, just because you mentioned it in passing, understand that he’s listening to every word you’re saying.
6. When he wants to date you exclusively
You’re his steady girlfriend and he makes sure everyone knows it. He is faithful and expects fidelity from you too. He has had the conversation about being exclusive with you. He makes sure everyone knows that he’s your boyfriend, not only because he doesn’t want random men hitting on you, but because he wants to send a clear signal to all the girls that he’s taken. This is a big step and you should appreciate him for this.
7. He’s transparent about his routine
You know his routine and what his day holds for him, not because you’re a tyrant but because he volunteers this information. You know he’s in the gym in the morning and reaches work at 10 a.m., after making a quick dash to a coffee shop. You know that if he doesn’t take your call in the afternoon, he’s probably in a meeting or in the loo. If he’s missing for a couple of hours, there’s always an explanation that’s credible. You have never wondered, “What could he possibly be doing now?” or “Why hasn’t he called me?”.
8. He introduces you to his friends
He is keen that you meet his friends and not only because he wants to show off what a knockout you are, but because he’s so in love with you. He wants his friends to know you and like you. He wants you to get comfortable with them, because this paves the way for your initiation in the group. He makes an effort to be nice to your friends for the same reasons. He wants you to meet his family. This move is not to be underestimated at all. If there’s one thing common in men across continents, it’s the fact that they only take the girl home, if they’re taking the relationship to the next level.
9. He asks for your opinion and respects it
He wants you to accompany him while he shops for clothes, because he trusts your choice. When he’s confused about his career, he talks to you and listens patiently to what you have to say. He discusses things with you to seek your opinion.
10. He’s always there when you need him
He may be foul tempered and may say hurtful things from time to time, but he's always there when you need him. When your uncle passed away, he was there to hold your hand. When you lost a job, he took you out for ice cream and reassured you. He may have his faults, but if he really cares for you, he will always try to protect you. If a bitchy girlfriend keeps picking on you, he calls her bluff and shuts her up. If he genuinely worries about you because you have cramps during that time of the month, he’s definitely serious about you.

Sexual questions for couples - Intimate and fun questions about sex to ask your partner

There are many questions related to your partner's sex life that you could ask them. Answers to some of these questions can provide an insight into your partner's personality. You can also know what you have in common and where you differ in sex. These questions aren't meant to be asked one after the other in a rapidfire manner. That would intimidate anyone! Rather, try to get answers to these over a period of time. Some of these questions are open ended and can shed light on your partner's sexual habits and preferences, thereby improving your love life in the long run.
1) Have you ever fantasised about a person of the same sex?
2) Have you ever had sex with someone of the same gender or indulged in kissing/fondling?
3) Do you find yourself attracted to people of the same sex sometimes?
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4) Do you have any sexually transmitted diseases?
5) Have you ever had unprotected sex? When? With whom?
6) Do you have any fetishes - including foot fetishes, sadism and masochism etc?
7) How important is sex to you?
8) How important do you think fidelity is, in a relationship?
9) How would you react if you found out your partner were disloyal to you?
10) How old were you when you first kissed?
11) Are you a virgin? If not, how old were you when you lost your virginity?
12) Who did you lose your virginity to? What was the experience like?
13) Which are the three people of the opposite sex you consider the most attractive?
14) Have you ever been forced into having sex?
15) How many sexual partners have you had to date?
16) Have you ever used sex toys?
17) Do you masturbate? How often?
18) Have you ever forced yourself sexually on a person?
19) Have you ever had sex with a person significantly older or younger than yourself?
20) Describe a sexual fantasy you would like to fulfil someday.
21) Have you ever had a one-night-stand?
22) Have you ever had sex with someone related to you?
23) Have you ever picked up someone from a singles bar?
24) Have you ever had phone sex?
25) Do you browse porn on the internet or on television?
26) Which are the three people of the same sex you consider the most attractive?
27) Have you ever paid for sex?
28) Have you ever been paid for sex?
29) Have you ever provided sexual favors to get anything in return, money or some other benefit?
30) If your boss promised you the promotion you were very keen to get but insisted that you spend a weekend with him, pleasing him sexually, would you agree?
31) Is there anything you would want to change about the way you look through plastic surgery if you had the choice and could afford it?
32) Would you pose nude for playboy if they offered you $1,000,000.
33) Have you ever been part of a sex orgy?
34) Have you ever tied Tantric Sex? Would you like to?
35) Have you ever cross-dressed?
36) Have you ever wondered what it would have been to be born as the opposite sex?

Dealing with a cheating boyfriend

What if your relationship with your boyfriend has become an integral part of your life, a characteristic of your identity, then you suddenly discover that your boyfriend whom you had begun to love is cheating on you. It is extremely difficult and furthermore painful to deal with this bitter truth. This boyfriend, who left no stone unturned to express his ‘undying’ love for you was actually repeating the same words to another girl! The first and foremost thought that may enter your mind on discovering your boyfriend’s deceitful side is to walk out of the relationship. But an impulsive decision may not put a full stop to his cheating ways.
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It may take a while for you to absorb this reality. After investing your time, emotions and energy in this relationship, you should think of considering a few ways to deal with your cheating boyfriend rather than walk away from the situation without making him realize his mistake. How do you deal with a cheating boyfriend as well as the emotional upheaval that ensues? Here are a few guidelines that may help:
Self-doubt or Self-pity
Remember that your boyfriend is the one who has cheated on you and not the other way round. There should be absolutely no room for self-doubt or self-pity. "Was there anything wrong with the way I dressed or looked? Is this the reason why allowed himself to get attracted to another girl?" Self-doubt or self-pity can hamper your self-esteem and hinder you from thinking straight. The guilt and pain after being cheated by your boyfriend is no doubt intense, but wallowing will not improve the situation.
Accept reality but avoid hasty decisions
Getting cheated is undoubtedly a heart-wrenching aspect for a girl but it cannot be viewed as a factor to end a relationship. Repeated episodes of cheating by your boyfriend, inspite of warnings, is unpardonable. But if you have known your boyfriend for long and think he is a wonderful person, then you may reconsider the idea of abruptly ending the relationship. But make sure that he makes a solemn promise to remain faithful towards you.
Once you have discovered that your boyfriend is cheating on you, don’t keep your negative emotions bottled up within you. Confront your boyfriend with your findings. You do need to have a heart-to-heart talk with him to find out what is on his mind, how he views his relationship with you or what both of you can do together to ensure that this does not happen again.
Give an ultimatum to your boyfriend
You can issue an ultimatum, asking him to 'either end the relationship with the other girl' or run the risk of losing you forever. If your boyfriend agrees for the former, then mutually agree upon a plan of action. If your boyfriend is unfaithful again, then you are free to do whatever you want.
Seek professional advice
If you are unable to reach a consensus with your boyfriend, meet a counselor and try to get some guidance in dealing with the situation. Professional help in such a situation may tie up lose ends and help you in dealing with a cheating boyfriend with much needed maturity and discretion.
How to make your ex jealous
It has been just over three months since Jane broke up with Samuel. Being an ardent lover of theatre with a passion for acting, Jane and Samuel’s paths often crossed each other. At the weekly drama rehearsals Jane would turn all shades of red when Samuel rehearsed as Romeo with a pretty girl playing Juliet. Jane experienced a twinge of jealousy looking at them together. Though the wounds of their break-up was yet to heal, Jane was determined to make her ex jealous.
Making your ex jealous is one of the ways of letting him know what he missed out on! Here are a few easy-to-adopt ways of making your ex jealous:
Enjoy yourself
IWhen your ex is around, do not sit and sulk in a corner. There can be no other way of conveying that you are still mooning over him! Put on your best clothes and have fun, show him that you are really enjoying yourself. If you happen to meet him in a club or near a dance floor, make sure that you put on your dancing shoes and hit the dance floor with a vengeance! Your smiling face and ‘love for life’ attitude should make your ex realize just how fabulous and wonderfully you are.
Hang around with his friends
Make sure your ex notices you when you talk to his friends. Laugh loudly when a joke is being told. Your ex should hear the laughter in your voice when you talk to his friends and resent the happiness it indicates.
Ignore him
Try not to exchange pleasantries with you ex if both of you happen to move in the same social circles. Your are way past the stage of being amiable, just pretend that he does not exist when both of you are in the same room. Ignore him and this will surely dent his self esteem.
Flirt with different guys
If making your ex jealous is your sole aim, then why not adopt the time-tested method of getting flirtatious? Flirting with other guys when your ex is around is a sure-fire way of making him jealous, unwanted and unworthy.
Ignore him at every opportunity
Jealousy is a powerful emotion. It is often used to draw attention, especially by those who have broken up with their boyfriend/girlfriend. If the separation with the boyfriend was not cordial, then girls often resort to various ways of getting even with their ex. Making their ex jealous is one such method. If done within limits it is harmless. In many cases, if one succeeds in making the ex jealous, then one may get over the hurt or disappointment caused by the breakup.

Do Men Like Overweight Women?

Among the many contradictions of contemporary culture is the curious representation of the reed-thin, almost anorexic female body as the most coveted female figure whereas in real life, obesity is emerging as one of the most common lifestyle conditions. So how do men want like their partners to be in actual life – skinny like the ramp models or with fuller figures like real women?
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Surveys and studies have again and again found out that a majority of men like their women to be curvaceous. One such research project led by Dr Steven Platek of Georgia Gwinnett College found that looking at a woman with a shapely body brought about pleasurable feelings in the male mind, similar to those induced by thoughts of beer and sex. As part of the study, researchers scanned the brains of fourteen young men as they looked at images of nude women before and after they had plastic surgery to give them fuller figures. The operation did not reduce their weight but merely redistributed it to areas like hips and breasts. The team found that the reward centers of the male volunteers got more excited when they viewed the post-operative images with the fuller bodies. The greatest degree of stimulation among the male research subjects was actually elicited by a high waist-to-hip ratio, more commonly known as “hour-glass figures”.
The widespread male preference for fuller female bodies that Dr Platek’s study underscored is actually grounded on evolutionary reasons. The purpose of a female figure is not, first and foremost, to gratify male desire. Rather the fuller breasts, rounded hips and a wide waist are indicative of the reproductive function of the female body which is why the female figure has over millennia evolved around the primary purpose of bearing and nurturing children. In fact, the continuing male desire for curvier women is a throwback to the primitive times when the ability to successfully bear and nurture children was a prime consideration for men choosing their mates. Since the very survival of the group and, indeed the species, depended upon the females successfully bringing up their offspring, men would choose partners with fuller figures which eventually indicated a greater success rate in bearing and nurturing children. While modern men do not need partners merely to bear their progeny, still the preference for the curvaceous female body seems to have been genetically wired into male choices.
However If the desire for the full-figured female body is so common then why are women repeatedly assailed with images of anorexic women claiming to represent the most attractive body type? The origin of this contradiction can be traced to the 1990s when the thin emaciated body made its first appearance on the ramps of the Western fashion world and quickly spread to Hollywood and other forms of popular media. Top models like Kate Moss and Hollywood actresses like Gwyneth Paltrow came to be regarded as style icons with their waif-like bodies.  The size zero culture was further popularized by TV stars like Calista Flockhart and international actresses like Keira Knightley. Few people saw or pointed out that primary purpose of models in the fashion industry was to hang the creations of the designers and not to set trends for real women of the world. The fact that even till twenty years ago, a majority of female models were a size eight was conveniently forgotten as size zero became the latest must-have on the fashion circuit. Interestingly enough, even Marilyn Monroe - who is still voted as among the sexiest women the world has seen -would have found it difficult to please today’s trend setters since she was a voluptuous size fourteen.
The saddest part about this fascination for reed-thin female figures is that it is completely oblivious to what is happening in the real world. In the last couple of decades the average American woman, who stands at around five feet four inches, has expanded from size ten to size fourteen. Being overweight is defined as having a Body Mass Index between 25 and 29.9 while obesity involves a BMI of more than 30. According to statistics provided by the Weight-Control Information Network1 in association with the US Department of Health and Human Services as well as the National Institutes of Health, over two thirds of adults in United States are overweight and as many as one-third of them are clinically obese. Women make up the majority of the numbers suffering from obesity at 35.5% while men are slightly lower at 32.2%. This is all more unfortunate since women bear the brunt of unrealistic body images in popular media which portray skinny anorexic figures as most attractive to men when in reality so many women are actually battling obesity.
Even more pertinent to the question whether men like overweight women is the fact that men make up the majority of the adult overweight population in America. According to the above resource, 64.1 percent of adult women are overweight or obese in the US whereas the corresponding percentage for men is far higher at 72.3%. This fact demolishes any justification for singling out the female body as the site for unrealistic expectations when in reality it is men who have higher numbers of overweight bodies. Perhaps because of this too, the average guy is not too particular about his partner’s figure when he knows that he is himself far from having washboard abs.
In the final analysis, all discussions of weight-related issues must deal with the health aspect. Whether affecting men or women, there is no doubt that being overweight is akin to inviting a host of health problems ranging from hypertension and cardiac conditions to infertility and inability to enjoy sex. So while the real flesh-and-blood guy continues to enjoy being able to hold on to the love handles or his curvaceous partner, being overweight and worse obese can not only make one prey to perceived notions of unattractiveness but worse, actual health and sexual problems.

10 Qualities Women Look for in a Man

Well, here’s the deal – no two women are alike. For every Veronica, there’s a Betty, and for every Rachael, there’ll always be a Monica (with snatches of the oddball Phoebe thrown in). However, beneath the myriad shades of moods, temperaments, whims and fancies that set them apart, there runs a common strand that joins the whole lot of women. At the end of the day, all women crave more or less the same qualities in men.
So what is it that the Venus dwellers seek in a man, really? Here’s the baffled guy’s guide to finding what makes women tick!
1. Honesty
It’s a no-brainer that women value trust and understanding in a relationship. When you lie, you run the risk of breaking that trust. Much as she would like to hear that she looks great in that dress, in her heart of hearts, she knows the answer and wants you to spell it out for her, loud and clear. Don’t fool around with her feelings under the pretext of “not wanting to hurt her”. Be honest with her, she can handle it. Tell her the truth, and as long as you take care not to hurt her feelings, she’ll be happy, even grateful for it.
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2. Sense of humour
Blame it on our hormones, but we women tend to sweat the small stuff and be upset at the drop of a hat. Cue for you to work that boyish charm, make her laugh and drive her blues away! A cocky sense of humour and flattering one-liners can also work in your favour. A word of caution – avoid juvenile pranks and crass jokes. Be your natural, genial self and you’ll definitely win her heart!
3. The ability to protect
Women can stand up for themselves very well, but deep down, all of them want to be protected.  Nothing pleases them more than the “you’re safe with me” assurance.  Offer to walk her home; if it’s late in the night, put an arm around her protectively if you sense other men making advances, and inspire confidence that she is safe with you. Do not hesitate if you have to take a stand for her. The safer a woman feels with you, the more she’ll respect you.
4. Intelligence
Women are attracted to men who are smart and can hold an intelligent conversation. When it comes to making important decisions, women expect men to be in charge and to make the right moves. Being with an intelligent partner, affords them a certain reassurance that their needs and demands will be well satisfied with better communication and understanding. Try and understand her needs and appreciate her point of view.
5. Loyalty
So you are commitment-phobic. That’s no big deal, and unless you are in a serious, long-term relationship, you are not bound to make the ‘till death do us part’ promise. However, a casual relationship doesn’t mean you can have a harem mentality. Be loyal to the woman you are dating. It’s insulting for her, if the man she’s with hits on other women. When out on a date with her, give her your all – pay attention to what she’s saying and make her feel like she’s the only one you care about, right there, right then.
6. Chivalry
Who says manners are for wimps? Truth is, it makes women feel special when guys go that extra mile. You don’t have to hire goons so you can do the rescue act to impress her. Even precious little gestures like holding doors, reaching for her hand to help her out of the car and offering to fix things around her apartment work like magic. Unless your date insists on going dutch, pick up the tab while dining out, and do it quietly, without making a big deal of it.
7. Manners and hygiene
While your rock star dreams, unruly hair and bohemian lifestyle might make school-girls drool, women prefer men who are well-groomed and...well, clean. Sloppy is not sexy. A filthy apartment and a junk-yard of a car is a big turn-off. Take trouble to dress smart and smell well. And please, do not leave the loo messy! Mind your language in front of women. Swearing ain’t cool. Not returning calls, and hanging up on her, is downright rude. If you are going to be late for a date, call her in advance and apologize. A word of caution – do not bad-mouth your ex and never, ever, break up over an SMS.
8. Respecting her space
While you might have serenaded her with “I’ll be watching you...” trust me, chances are, you’ll scare her off with your constant vigil. Your attempts at invading her space will only scare her and make her run for cover. Encourage her to spend time with her girl friends, or to do her own thing. Let her be moody and cranky once in a while and suppress the urge to ask her – ‘Are you PMSing?’ You’ll only infuriate her further. Give her time...and space. Let her be.
9. Being a friend first
“Part-time lover and a full-time friend...” goes the popular song by Moldy Peaches. Well, that best sums up what women want in a man. Express your affection through simple gestures and small gifts - an impromptu massage, a heartfelt note and hand-picked flowers may cost little, but they can make a woman fall in love with you all over again. Be a friend, talk to her without judging her and let her know you’re there for her, come what may.
10. Not being clingy and desperate
Take it from a woman - guys who try too hard to impress a girl, end up putting her off. Do not look too needy or act desperate. Women have special sensory powers to sniff out men who try too hard. The last thing a woman wants, is to have a clingy guy hanging outside her door. Be cool and confident, and trust me, she’ll want you even more!
Follow these basic rules and let your intuition guide you through the rest. Good luck!

Monday, 17 September 2012

10 Signs your Relationship is in Trouble

While most relationships begin with romantic hopes and promises of togetherness, time is unkind to many of them. Partners fall out over priorities, cheat on each other or simply drift away. The saddest part is that usually things can be worked out if issues are recognized and acknowledged early. So before it is too late look out for these ten signs which could indicate that your relationship is in trouble.
  1. You no longer hurry home Remember the time when you just couldn’t wait to meet your partner at the end of the day. You would count the hours and minutes before you could rush home to your love. But when things begin to go wrong, you may find your partner or yourself delaying coming back as much as possible. Either of you are likely to dawdle over the last assignment at work or join your co-workers for a drink. It is almost like you can’t face him or her or the prospect that there is nothing to look forward to in this relationship.
  2.  You don’t spend time together One of the surest signs of trouble in a relationship is the lack of quality time spent with each other. Shared activities and interests are what act as a glue in a relationship once the first flush of romance is over. But if you find yourself no longer going out or planning activities with your partner, it is a red flag. Initially this may be masked in the form of overtime at work or unavoidable lunches with family or friends. However with time, even the façade of other commitments may fall off and you realize that you simply don’t want to each other anymore.
  3. You're not having as much sex as before While sex is not the most important part of a relationship, not having it at all can signal an underlying problem. It is bad enough when one partner wants to make love while the other doesn’t. But even when both partners are alright with no sex, it indicates a loss of intimacy which cannot be healthy for a relationship. Lack of sex is not usually a cause in itself but a symptom of other issues wrecking a relationship like infidelity, differing priorities, insensitivity of one partner to another or health issues.
  4. You fight over money Together with sex, money ranks as among the top reasons why spouses go for a divorce. Not having enough money, different attitudes to saving and conflicting spending priorities can push a couple away from each other. Here once again fights over money can indicate other issues troubling a relationship. Your husband may not approve of your present traveling job and he may use your expenses as an excuse to mask his displeasure. Or your girlfriend may not like your friends and thus throw a fit when you decide to spend on hiking gear since she knows this means you are planning a trip with them.
  5. You make separate plans Being in a relationship means staying clued to your partner’s wishes, whether  in the short or long run. If you find yourself making plans for shopping or meeting friends which does not include your partner, it means there is a disconnect between you two. At the same time he/she may announce a desire for a weekend getaway knowing full well that you have an important presentation on Monday. When two people are in love, it does not mean that they always want to do the same things, but they give and take a little which ensures that they are in tune with each other. Whereas falling out of love makes couples disregard each other’s priorities and eggs them on to go alone.
  6. There is more intolerance Small quirks in each other which you may have found endearing at the beginning of your relationship may seem much more annoying now. This is because while couples are more understanding of each other when in love, they find it difficult to accept any imperfections, however little, as love wears away. So if your partner loved your way of whistling while you made coffee every morning, now the same action is enough to make him/her fly into a rage.
  7. He/she makes disparaging remarks about your family

    No matter how imperfect parents are, family is one area which demands respect in a relationship. You would never dream of beginning a relationship with a person who is disrespectful towards the people who brought you up. However when a couple cease to love each other, there may be snide remarks and sarcastic comments on families and by extension on particular ethnic, racial or religious backgrounds. This is as sure a sign as any that your partner no longer cares what you think of him/her and is likely to end the relationship.
  8. Your partner embarrasses/criticizes you before company This is yet another indication that your partner has ceased to respect you as a person and couldn’t care less about your feelings of humiliation and anger. This attitude may take different forms like flirting with someone else in your full view, ignoring your input in a conversation or putting you down before everybody else. Whatever the particular form of expression, public humiliation is one of the surest ways of telling that this is over.
  9. Your fight about everything Every couple has a fight now and then. But if the periods when you are mad at your partner are longer than when you are OK, it means you both have a problem in your hands. Often there is no rhyme or reason to your fights. Any excuse will do as long as it is a way of venting your anger and frustration at each other.
  10. You no longer talk about the future Time was when you both would eagerly discuss where to buy a house, what places to go vacationing or even when to have kids. But when two people no longer share the same dreams or even talk about them, it is definite sign that each is going his/her own way.
Ups and downs are normal phases in every relationship. The trick is to recognize the valleys before it is too late and prevent them from pulling your relationship downhill.

How to Get out of an Abusive Relationship

An abusive relationship is possibly the worst kind of situation anyone can get caught in his/her personal life. This is partly because getting out of such a relationship seems so difficult - the victim is often depleted of all self-worth and self-confidence and seems incapable to make a move out. If you find yourself in such a situation, recognize it for what it is and use this brief guide to get out of an abusive relationship.
Identify an abusive relationship
Healthy relationships involve respect, trust, and consideration for the other person. So if your relationship is devoid of all this, it is quite possible you are in an abusive relationship. Abuse can be physical, emotional, or sexual. While it is easier to identify physical abuse since it includes any form of violence such as hitting, punching, pulling hair, and kicking, it is often more difficult to spot emotional or sexual abuse. Emotional abuse includes actions like teasing, bullying, and humiliating the victim.  Apart from these threats, intimidation, putdowns and betrayal are all harmful forms of emotional abuse that can really hurt, both when it's happening and in the long term too. Sexual abuse sometimes masquerades as high libido, ‘angry sex’ or supposedly really passionate sex but it actually covers any type of sexual experience that you don't want and are forced into. In order to get out of an abusive relationship, it is necessary to identify it first because many times the abusive partner masks him/herself as a simply jealous lover or one who is extra concerned about the victim. Unfortunately victims in such relationships mistake the abuse for intense feelings of caring or concern and fail to see it for what it really is.
Stop living in denial
If you consciously realize that your relationship is abusive, it is easier to decide to get out. However many victims do not accept the reality of such a relationship and continue to believe that if they try harder, they might make things work and their partner would be more loving and caring. It is extremely important to stop living in denial since no matter how hard you try, you can never change an abusive partner on your own. It is important to realize that the abuse in the relationship is not about you. Abusive partners are extremely clever and adept at manipulating people and situations to fall in with their wishes. If your partner is one, then most likely you have been brainwashed into believing that you are incapable of thinking or doing anything right on your own and that the only way to do a thing is to do it their way. You may have acceded to your partner’s wishes a few times in the past just to avoid any unpleasantness. But your partner will point this out to you as evidence of your own weakness and continue to bully you to act in accordance with their wishes. However keep in mind that the very fact that you have sensed that something is wrong in the relationship means your faculties and intelligence are fine and not matter how much your partner bullies you into thinking that you are helpless without them, it is not so.

Stand up for yourself
The most important step in getting away from an abusive partner is to stand up for yourself. Realize that you have the right to be treated with respect and not be physically or emotionally harmed by another person, no matter how much he/she professes to love you. This may be easier said than done since an abusive partner may have induced such fear and anxiety in you over time that you may no longer believe in your ability to make a difference. However you should realize that no matter how many times you give in to your partner’s wishes and how understanding you try to be, unless you do something to defend your own self-worth and self-respect, no one else will.
Prepare ahead
Unfortunately people trapped in long term relationships with abusive partners usually have had their independence and resources taken away from them early on so that they no longer have the courage to strike out on their own. A woman who may have succumbed to a whirlwind romance and quick marriage to a control freak may find herself a stay-at-home mom, unable to break out from an unhappy marriage due to lack of financial resources. If ever she gets the courage to express her misery, her husband may blackmail her into staying because of the kids or threaten to leave her without any money. Here the best way to go about it is to prepare yourself financially and emotionally to lead an independent life and then face your partner and force him to call his/her bluff.
Don’t isolate yourself
Avoid the tendency to withdraw into a shell by distancing yourself from your friends and family. You might feel like you have nowhere to turn, or you might be embarrassed about what's been going on, but this is when you need support most. People like counselors, doctors, teachers, coaches, and friends are in a position to help you, so let them.
Look for help
A relationship with an abusive partner is one of the most frightening experiences and so don’t rely on yourself alone to get out of the situation. Friends and family who love and care about you can help you break away. Always keep in mind that asking for help isn't a sign of weakness. It actually shows that you have a lot of courage – you are not only willing to stand up for yourself but also ready to get out of an abusive relationship. It’s also likely you will need help to break out of a cycle of abuse, especially in terms of practical resources like a place to stay, support network for your kids if you have any, a job as well as emotional resources like counseling. Go through your local phone book or the internet in order to find the contact numbers of crisis centers, teen/women’s help lines and abuse hotlines. These organizations have professionally trained staff to listen, understand, and help. In addition, religious leaders, school nurses, teachers, school counselors, doctors, and other health professionals can be sources of support and information. However if you have are a victim of physical abuse or believe that your partner can endanger your own or your kids’ safety, leave now. If been attacked physically, call 911, the police or medical help. Assault in all its forms is illegal and you should not have to live with the person inflicting it on you.

If you're Obsessed with your Ex-Boyfriend – Learning to Let Go

A breakup is hard to accept, especially when you have invested a lot of time and effort in building a relationship and nurturing it. There are times when you feel that if only that had not happened or this person had not come in between, your relationship would have been perfect. The two of you would have been blissful in each other’s arms and no force in the world could have driven your man away. Beware; these are signs that you are getting obsessed with your ex-boyfriend. When you replay the scenes of your break-up again and again in your mind or keep going over the reasons why he left, it is time to give yourself a mental shake.
Here are a few ways which will help you to let go of the shadows of the past and get on with the business of living in the present.
Accept the reality
You can start off by accepting what has happened. Easier said than done, you would say. But then whoever said that getting over a cherished relationship was easy! It takes time – a lot of it. Give yourself a few days to mourn the break-up but a few days only! During this period allow yourself to feel sad, angry and completely miserable, if you wish. But after the stipulated time, pull away the blinds, open the windows and let the fresh air from outside breathe new life into your room as well as your mind.
Get rid of any guilty
Be sure to absolve yourself of any guilt regarding the break-up. “If only I hadn’t told him about the incidents from college” or “if only I could lose some more weight”, you could go on till you’d be blue in the face and no nearer to the crux of the problem. Just accept the fact that you have split and that it’s none of your doing.
A learning experience

Extract one important lesson from the whole experience. If you believe that you have learnt something from a failed relationship, it is likely to hurt less. The nightmare will have seemed to be worth striving through if only to attain a single pearl of wisdom.
Get rid of everything that reminds you of your ex
Get up and about. A good way to let go of the past is sweep away all its reminders. This means not only emptying your bathroom cabinet of his aftershaves and toothbrushes but also getting rid of things like a joint credit card or a joint bank account. Remove him from your speed-dial and if he figures on your social-networking account, de-list him from your ‘favorites’.
Focus on yourself
This is the best time to come back to the person who matters most – yourself. Take time off from every other concern and focus on the person you are, your priorities, the goals you want to set for yourself and the person that you eventually want to become. Often a relationship makes us overly involved in another person so that we lose focus of our own selves. This is right time to start working towards regaining your own identity. Better still, see if you can translate your aspirations into something concrete – like learning a new skill, taking up a hobby that you always found interesting or even relocating to a new city with a new job.
A new routine
Follow up the mental spring-cleaning with a physical make-over. If within your means, go out and splurge on a new hairstyle or a new wardrobe. But if you have your pocket to consider, spend on that outfit you always wanted to buy but your ex thought you were too fat for it! However the best kind of physical change will be to go for a new workout routine. Not only will you be healthier than before, but your body will once again feel good about itself.
Can you remain friends?
Keep away from the “lets-remain-good friends-trap”. If you are going through a painful breakup, it is best to let go of the relationship completely. Your ex-boyfriend may feel he is making it easier for you by offering to remain ‘friends’ but this may only be his way of working off the guilt. So don’t be desperate to return his calls or meet him at the first chance. This will not only keep you tied to a dead relationship but also delay the healing process.
Avoid rebound affairs
Don’t be in a rush to find a substitute for your ex-boyfriend. While it is alright to meet new people and have a different social circle while emerging from a break-up, don’t charge headlong into a new relationship. These rebound affairs never work and in most cases they leave you feeling worse than before.
Making your ex jealous

Be careful not to indulge in things for the sole purpose of making your ex-boyfriend jealous. Flirting with others when he is around or taking up habits with the purpose of annoying him is not moving on. This only shows that you are still obsessing over him and are more concerned with his reactions rather than your own healing process.

Get support from close friends
Gather a support group of friends or co-workers who will help through this trying period. Call up or go to meet your family if you are close to them. It is alright to take help from people who care about you and more importantly it will help you to realize there are other relationships in which you are equally, if not more, important.
Get professional help
Finally if you feel that despite your best efforts, you cannot seem to let go of the thoughts of your ex, seek professional help. Don’t panic about being labeled a ‘nut-case’ if you need to go for therapy. That is what professionals are for – to help you feel better.
Human beings are internally wired to be active and happy. Remember that it is not in our make-up to mope and live in the shadows. So with a little patience and help from your well wishers there is no reason why you cannot let go of a failed relationship and leave thoughts of you ex-boyfriend where they truly belong – in the past.

Dealing with women who're insecure

Insecurity is not a trait limited to women. There are many men who are also insecure, especially if they perceive themselves to be the lesser partner in a relationship. But most often, it seems to be women who are the more insecure of the species.
Insecurity is damaging to a relationship especially when it is totally unjustified. If a woman is insecure and constantly finding fault with her partner as a result, there will come a point when he will get fed up trying to placate her and prefer being with someone who is more deserving of his affection.
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But if insecurity is one of her only failings (and you could do worse), it might help to assess the extent of the problem and conduct some damage control. If you are in a relationship and you notice some of these tell-tale signs, without ever having given her reason to feel this way, you are dealing with an insecure woman.
  • She is always needy. She depends on you for everything and makes you aware of it. She is clingy and wants to be around you all the time.
  • She is often plagued with doubts about her self-worth and suffers from low self-esteem.
  • She is suspicious of your every move and you feel you have to account to her for everything.
  • She often wants access to all your personal communication, cell phone messages, etc.
  • She makes you feel on edge because you have to be on your guard or defend yourself to her.
  • She often accuses you of being tempted to cheat on her or of actually being unfaithful and you have never done anything to warrant it.
  • She complains of being neglected or feeling left out of your life.
While most of us are insecure about something, be it our looks, intelligence or popularity, we tend to deal with it and get on with our lives. We are aware that we are lacking in a certain department, but also reassure ourselves that we compensate for it in another area. Insecurity becomes a problem when it assumes larger-than-life proportions and verges on paranoia. It is worth examining the problem and getting to the root cause of the insecurity, just as any paranoia can be traced to certain deep-rooted fears.
Most often, insecurity stems from a basic lack of confidence. A feeling of just not being good enough and not being able to measure up to expectations, more from the woman herself, than from any external source. It could be early childhood experiences like a harsh growing-up environment, being orphaned, negligent foster care, an abusive parent or being denied love and still craving it.
Sometimes a woman becomes insecure due to severe criticism, either from parents or siblings, that she’s too lazy or inefficient or totally lacking in looks for anyone to ever be attracted to her. Or she may have become insecure more recently when a relationship went sour and she got dumped, or found out that her boyfriend was cheating on her.
If you are not able to get to the root of the problem yourself, seek help. In order to get her to commit to seeking help, she has to first admit that there is a problem and it is not you. If you point fingers or try to assign blame, she will withdraw. And accuse you of having something to hide after all. Even if you do not ascertain a cause, the important thing is to get her to acknowledge in the most subtle way possible that there is a problem and you are willing to tackle it head-on and support her through it. Be patient and tolerant of her uncertainties.
In order to get her to open up and confide in you about her deepest fears or allow you to get somebody to help her if you can’t, she has to really begin to trust you. And once she really trusts you, not just says she does but actually believes it, a lot of her insecurities will vanish into thin air. But in order for her to reach even this halfway point, you have to sit down and communicate.
Show her that your life is an open book. Tell her that you are willing to answer any questions she has at that point or account for any time that she thinks you were up to no good, but it ends there. Tell her about your past relationships and bad experiences and ask her if she would like to share some of hers.
Reassure her that you are with her because you like her as she is, except for her unjustified and uncalled for accusations. If she is under the impression that you are after someone who is better looking, sexier, more intelligent or all of the above, lighten the situation by telling her you wouldn’t know what to do with a woman like that and might be intimidated at the prospect.
Remind her that you enjoy your relationship and her presence in your life and the only reason it is stopping short of being perfect is because of the unhappiness she feels and the hurt you apparently cause her. And that makes you miserable too. Let her know subtly that her accusations are irrational and you would never contemplate doing what she is accusing you of. And say it only if you mean it.
Be absolutely honest and upfront. In order to completely gain her trust, you have to work doubly hard than you would with someone who is not insecure. That means avoiding telling her even tiny white lies or deception of any sort. If she finds out the truth, it will be sufficient to undo all the success you have had thus far in getting her to trust you.
Be appreciative of her good qualities and reinforce them so that she too starts feeling good about herself. Seek her opinion and let her know it matters to you.
Support and encourage her to take up new endeavours and pursue activities that will creatively engage her energies, thus leaving her with less free time to obsess about or ponder over her insecurities. As difficult as it is to deal with a woman who’s perpetually insecure, it can be done. First you have to be convinced of your dedication and commitment to the relationship and once you surmount the problem together, you will be a stronger couple for it.

Women who scare men away

There are those women who men just love to love. They are feminine, humorous and delicate and know how to make a man feel like a man. And then there are those women who send out certain signals, loud and clear, which tell a man he’s better off staying away. He somehow knows that he’s going to be out of his depth trying to handle her. Or he’s going to burn his fingers trying. Do you see yourself in any of these women?

1. The high-maintenance gal
Everything about her screams designer wear. From her Armani suit to her Gucci shoes. Her styled hair and French manicure speak about hours spent at the salon. While she’s gorgeous to look at, a lot of regular men prefer leaving it at just that. Unless a man is rolling in it, he kind of figures his entire paycheck will be going up in smoke just to keep her in the style she’s accustomed to.
2. The aggressive woman
While a lot of men concur that they like a woman to be aggressive and take the initiative in the bedroom, they somehow don’t feel the same when women take over in the boardroom. The high-flying career woman pretty often finds it really hard to get a decent date, either because she’s so busy with climbing the corporate ladder or because the men find her success too intimidating. Even some of the more successful men prefer a woman who can be there for them, not someone who has her own stress-filled career and can give them a run for their money in the brains department.
3. The bra-burning feminist
This kind of woman somehow shakes the male bastion to its foundation. Men like to be with a woman because of just that, her womanly virtues. Once women start talking about equal opportunities and spewing venom about men doubting their skills in various departments, it puts a man on the defensive. And that is not a place many people like to be, man or woman. It makes a man feel good to be able to take care of a woman, after all, that is what makes him feel like the strong one. To have that taken away and make him have to justify wanting to enjoy a woman’s femininity, gives him a feeling of being backed into a corner, and somehow he doesn’t quite feel like coming out of it!
4. The social climber
If there’s one thing a man hates, it is being dragged around by his woman at a social gathering and forced to hobnob with the who’s who and not being able to even enjoy his drink in peace. This kind of woman wants to meet everyone there is to meet and make just the right kind of impression. The superficial takes over from the reality, and in the process any chance of having a decent conversation, or a pleasant evening, is totally ruined.
5. The gold digger
If a man figures that you’re trying to find out about his net worth before getting to know him as a person, you’re out of the game before you’ve even begun. He would rather you admire him for his physical assets rather than his material ones. For a man, finding out that a woman is an opportunist, or has her eye on the main chance, is the surest way of ensuring she’ll never see him again, unless she's already done a number on him and he’s too far gone to realize.
6. The calculating shrew
With her, nothing is as casual as it seems. There is an underlying motive to almost everything, and suddenly a man gets the feeling that he’s being manipulated against his better judgment and he’s helpless to do anything about it. Her schemes are devious and he often finds himself caught in the middle of it. She manages to connive and talk her way out of situations while already plotting her next move. She can be formidable in her cunning and crafty ways.
7. She wants a commitment
And then there’s the woman who’s just waiting to sink her claws into Mr. Right. She doesn’t wait long before talking of weddings, bridal gowns and first dances. A man feels the noose tightening around his neck and can’t wait to make good his escape. After all she’s sounding the death-knell for his freedom!8. The insecure woman
Her clinginess drives him insane. Her possessiveness is guaranteed to drive anyone up the wall. And what about her jealousy and mistrust of anything he says or does? He feels she’ll only be happy if he’s around her all the time, maybe with blinkers on.
If one or several of these characterizations accurately describes you, it’s not too late to take a good, hard look at yourself and plan how you can make some subtle (or drastic as the case may be) improvements for the better!

Married but Available - Married Men who Cheat on their Wives

Today infidelity is the leading cause of divorce in most advanced societies. Some people may argue that infidelity is just a symptom of deeper problems which are actually responsible for unraveling a marriage. But whether couples separate or not, few dispute that infidelity is a rising and destabilizing trend in contemporary society. In fact statistics provided by Atwood & Schwartz in the 2002 Journal of Couple & Relationship Therapy reveal that that 45-55% of married women and 50-60% of married men in United States engaged in extramarital sex at some time or another during their relationship. This means that more than half of married men are cheating on their wives.
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Married men signal their availability most often by lying about their marital status and modern technology has made only made this easier.  The popularity of internet dating sites and online chat rooms is proof of the vast number of men and women looking for partners in the virtual world. Here the anonymity and ease of accessibility makes it convenient for people to lie about themselves and in case of men, about the fact that they are already married. According to a recent study conducted jointly by researchers for the University of Chicago and MIT, while women on dating sites lied mostly about heights, weights, and ages, the number one lie that men told was about their marital status followed by their jobs and educational qualification.
This is evident not only from the popularity of casual affair sites but also from statistics provided by internet dating sites. The Online Dating Newsletter for instance reports that as many as 30% of married men disguise themselves as single guys and use online dating services meant for their single counterparts.
However this is not to say that in real life men seldom lie about their marital status. A woman may come across a smart, charming guy in a coffee shop almost every day and notice that he does not have a wedding band. It is only a matter of time before they start chatting and then a couple of weeks later even begin dating each other. But all the while she may be unaware that this attractive and interesting man actually has a wife and kids tucked away in his suburban home. Psychologists say that men lie to avoid a crisis. This probably means that married men lie so that they can get to keep their extra-marital partners and continue with their marriage at the same time. But why carry on this double life? Here are some common reasons why married men date other women by lying about their marital status.
Very often extra-marital affairs are perceived to be about great sex and mistresses who are femme fatales. According to family counselor, rabbi and best-selling author Gary Neuman, it is rarely about sex. In a two-year study of 100 men who had sexual affairs and 100 men who were faithful, Neuman found that only 8 percent of cheaters said that sexual dissatisfaction was the main cause of their infidelity and only 12 percent said the mistress was better looking or in better shape than their wives. On the other hand an overwhelming 48 percent said that they cheated because they felt emotionally disconnected from their wives.
The number one reason causing this emotional disconnection is under-appreciation, according to Neuman who has compiled the findings of his two-year study in the book, The Truth About Cheating: Why Men Stray and What You Can Do To Prevent It. When men feel that they are not being valued in their marriage, they begin to seek the validation from another relationship. This happens primarily because men are more insecure as compared to women in a committed relationship like marriage. It is as if they like to stay in the game as long as they are getting to win and making a difference. As soon as they find that their gestures are no longer appreciated or in other words, they are not winning, they want to exit the game and look for another game to win. In all probability, these men are doing things that make it difficult for their wives to appreciate them but the very fact they are feeling undervalued in their primary relationship will make them seek appreciation from lovers and mistresses.
Many men cheat because miss the excitement of the early days of their marriage and want to be experience the intensity of attraction again. These men are not able to mature in a marriage and feel that a successful relationship is one which always exists in a state of heightened emotions or frenzied passions. Rather than explore the reasons why their marriage does not satisfy them and address those problems if any, they figure it is easier to find someone else to stand in for their partners. Interestingly these men get tired of their lovers soon enough and then move on to newer objects of desire.
Again there are some men who, married or not, are compulsive cheaters. They will lie about their marital status and cheat just for the sake of cheating. In his study, Neuman found that 12% of married men will cheat on their wives, no matter what. For these men it is a game and one they figure they might as well play as long as they can get away with it.
While there may be as many reasons for cheating as there are married men, the easiest way to go about this is by lying about their marital status. In fact when confronted by their wives, the same men will also lie about their affairs. In his study, Neuman found that a whopping 93% of married men who cheated will not admit to having an affair when confronted by their wives. According to psychologist Bella M. DePaulo of the University of Virginia, men usually lie either to build themselves up like claiming to have topped his class in college or to conceal something, like the fact they are married when they are dating other women. Lies of the second type are unfair to all three parties involved and destructive not only of the primary relationship but ultimately also of the relationship that the same lies are seeking to build.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

The 10 laws of dating for men

When a man is dating a woman, it is usually all about impressing her. Women also feel inclined to put their best foot forward, but often, the onus is on the man. Quite often, women are a mystery. One woman’s food is often another woman’s poison. A man is never really sure what women go for - what one likes, another may detest. But there are some universal dating laws that would hold true for most women. Read on.

1. Smile
An open, friendly smile says a lot about you. It can be a good indication that you feel good about yourself and that reflects in your expression. It can be contagious and make your date feel like smiling too, which can only be a good thing. If you’ve been told you have a cheeky grin, don’t hesitate to flash it. Sometimes a tentative one works too, women often like that shy, little-boy look, and it makes them feel very protective! And don’t forget, if you’ve got dimples, let them show!
2. Pay her a compliment
When you are dating a woman, you can be sure that she has taken considerable trouble over her appearance. Let her know you’ve noticed. Compliment her on the attractive dress she’s wearing or just tell her how good she looks. Exclamations that sound genuine include "wow" or "amazing" or a simple "you look fantastic". As you get to know her better, make the compliments less superficial and more intense. For instance, if you realize she’s knowledgeable about art or is a great cook, tell her "I love that about you" but don’t be phony. Make sure whatever you compliment her on, it’s legitimate and you mean it.
3. Don't boast about your conquests
The worst thing you could do is to brag about your skills as a Casanova. Even if you are, she doesn’t really want to hear about it. It will only serve to make her feel like one in a long list of exploits. That’s not what you’re aiming for. One of the biggest turnoffs can be to have to sit through the boring monologue of a braggadocio and having to stroke his already considerable ego.
4. Don't run down your ex
And this is the next worst thing you could do. What you’re saying about your ex won’t matter as much as what is being conveyed about you. That you cannot master your emotions and handle a break-up is one thing. But the bitterness that spills out does not set the right note and will cause considerable discomfort to your date. Also consider her feelings. She will realize that if things don’t work out, one day, you will be talking the same way about her to another woman. And if there’s one thing women hate, it’s to be discussed in a negative light with another woman, however unknown. It will hardly make her empathetic.
5. Personal hygiene is very important
Your date will really appreciate it if you make the effort to look neat and smell good. A woman adores a man who smells divine. It will in all probability encourage her to lean in, and use any excuse to get closer to you. Just so she can get a whiff of your sexy aftershave. Pay attention to your grooming and your appearance too. A well turned-out guy is a visual pleasure and you will find her eyes staying on you in genuine appreciation.
6. Be a good listener
Don’t feel like you have to talk all the time to keep the conversation flowing. If you think she’s hesitant or not an equal participant in the conversation, draw her out. Ask about her interests and work, what she does in her leisure time – general topics which she will feel free to open up about. It takes a skilled conversationalist to avoid awkward silences and yet manage to steer the conversation back to your date. If she’s happy to talk, be an attentive listener and store relevant details for future reference. She’s sure to be touched that you remembered such apparently trivial details and made a note of them.
7. Make her laugh
Use humor to charm her. That doesn’t mean you have to have her cracking up for a better part of the evening. But if a woman spends her date with you truly enjoying herself, she’s certain to let her guard down enough to let you get to know her better. And she’s definitely going to be up for more dates in the future.
8. Display good manners
Treat the lady well. There is something charming about a man who respects a lady and isn’t afraid to show it. Don’t make the mistake of using foul language or cracking smutty jokes. It rarely serves any purpose other than to indicate your lack of maturity. At the same time, don’t bow and scrape too much and hang around like a puppy dog that’s too eager to please. Keep your self-respect intact.
9. Don’t be pushy
The key is subtlety. Don’t push her for anything more than she is ready to reveal or to give. Also, don’t be aggressive and insist on getting her another drink, paying the entire bill or having coffee at your place. Give her the liberty of making her own decisions and while you may like to foot the entire bill, if she isn’t comfortable with it, don’t be boorish and persist. And just because she lets you buy her dinner, don’t expect sex as a natural outcome of it. In fact, the golden rule is not to have too many expectations at all, especially of the first few dates. Give her space, don’t crowd her and pursue her too much.
10. Be honest
Or at least as honest as you can afford to be. Act as naturally as you can and don’t pretend to be anything you’re not. It will be hard to always keep up appearances and eventually your true colors will show. The more at ease you are, the more comfortable she will feel with you, and that’s the best guarantee you have that she will want to see you again.