What Is Breakup Sex?

What Is Breakup Sex? Breakup sex is the bittersweet, passionate sex you have with your partner shortly after or shortly before breaking up with them. Some people consider breakup sex to be even better than make-up sex. The exciting nature of “goodbye” sex is due to its unique circumstances: This is the last chance to enjoy sex with each other. Sometimes breakup sex can be the best sex ever. In other words, “one for the road,” “the last hurrah.”

goodbye kiss

Couple kissing during breakup sex

The psychology behind breakup sex reveals why this questionable decision can feel super hot and awesome in the moment. Sex is exciting when their are no other expectations than arriving at an orgasm. Breakup sex can also be some form of denial that the relationship will actually be over. Having breakup sex can be seen as an implicit way of saying the relationship is not over.

Breakup sex as one facet in the drawn-out process of ending a relationship. Most people think relational collapses are an immediate event when in fact, they aren’t.  Instead, breaking up is part of an ongoing process.  And having sex one last time can be an important part of letting go of that person. Sometimes it helps couples find closure in a healthy way. Breakup sex helps a couple move past feelings of sadness and literally feel better. It can be healing because it has the power to validate certain parts of the relationship that may have once worked well.

Sometimes breakup sex can be a last ditch effort to save the relationship. If the decision is to terminate their relationship break up sex could be a means to engage in sex after their breakup. And to have what is also known as “friends with benefits” and “hook-ups.”

With the release of Dopamine, people can feel close to their sex partners.  It’s important to understand that sex with or without an emotional connection can weigh heavy on our psyche.

For more information about breakup sex contact me at CouplesCounselorSanDiego.com

What Exactly Is MakeUp Sex?

What Exactly Is MakeUp Sex? For some couples sex after arguing/fighting is almost like verbal foreplay. Makeup sex is sexual intercourse after conflict in intimate relationships. Conflict can range from minor arguments to breaking up. Sex under these circumstances can be emotionally charged and gratifying. Emotional significance can be conceived as a physical expression of reconciliation and rediscovery of a partner’s cathartic experience of a fight (psychological relief through the open expression of strong emotions). Often times makeup sex can resolve underlying conflicts.

Makeup sex

Makeup sex:

  • Can make you feel more connected because you survived a challenging situation (fight)
  • The anger/aggression after fighting is energy that fuels high emotions turning good sex into hot sex
  • Sex can be used as an apology, the wronged partner overcompensates and makes sex a great experience
  • Is a band aid in dealing with the underlying issues
  • Restores the feeling of connectedness due to the release of Dopamine 

Couples therapist

Romantic conflict can increase feelings of sexual desire. Increased sexual desire is high due to the fear of losing the relationship. The experience can be psychologically threatening. Feeling threatened activates our biologically-based attachment system. This system keeps our important relationships intact. It motivates us to increase our sense of closeness and security with important people in our lives, such as our intimate partner.

The difference between couples who feel like roommates and couples who feel intimacy is the ability to share thoughts and feelings, ask for what they need and want, and avoid being conflict avoidant. Expressing feelings makes for being vulnerable and being vulnerable makes for intimacy. Fighting takes a lot of energy. That energy is a range full of emotions. When couples tell me they never fight I find their relationship suspect. Being cordial suppresses emotions that need to be expressed. The lack of sharing those emotions keeps couples from feeling intimacy.  Although fighting is not an appropriate means for resolving conflict, it does make for highly charged feelings.

For more information about makeup sex please go to my website CouplesCounselorSanDiego.com or call me at (858) 735-1139.

 

 

Monogamy Myths And Truths

Monogamy Myths And Truths.  Conservative estimates show that 60 percent of men and 40 percent of women will have an extramarital affair. Most people expect monogamy to be a normal part of marriage or any committed relationship. When stating marital vows it’s either implicit or explicit that monogamy is expected. Some couples who come in for Affair Recovery do so where one of them has made a unilateral decision to open up their marriage by cheating.

Photo by Shawn Goldberg
Monogamy myths and truths

Some monogamy myths:

  • Society supports monogamy as the norm in society as a whole.
  • One person can meet all of your needs
  • If an affair happens, it’s strictly a personal failure of the people involved
  • Cheating and affairs are more common among the rich and less common in conservative cultures
  • If you really love your partner, you’ll remain faithful
  • We generally agree on what counts as cheating
  • Your partner won’t stray as long as you keep your sex life exciting
  • Most married people don’t cheat
  • Jealousy is an indicator of true love
  • Intimacy is only for romantic relationships
  • Monogamy means you don’t experience other attractions

Couples therapist

The reality about Monogamy is despite society’s lip service to monogamy there are significant societal factors that support and encourage affairs. Just look at advertising idealizing relationships by suggesting you can have it all.  That monogamy is not the norm by today’s standards

Monogamy is a choice. As years go by in long term marriage it is recommended to keep the line of communication open and be able to talk about what you like and don’t like in the bedroom. Being able to initiate conversation, express thoughts and feelings, and asking for what you need and want keeps the intimacy in tack to continue to choose monogamy. If and when couples choose otherwise, it would be advisable to develop New Monogamy agreements so relationship expectations are explicit rather than implicit.

For more information about monogamy and new monogamy agreements visit my website at CouplesCounselorSanDiego.com or call me at (858) 735-1139.

 

 

Reclamation Sex – what exactly is it?

Reclamation Sex – what exactly is it? What is reclamation? Simply put, reclamation is the process of claiming something back or of reasserting a right. For example, “the reclamation of our shared history.” Reclamation sex in Affair Recovery is when the affair partner and the hurt partner engage in sex after an affair is discovered or disclosed.  As a marriage therapist and affair recovery specialist, couples come in to see if they can or want to salvage their marriage. “Should I stay or should I go” is a question the hurt partner wants desperately to know. During the initial session where both share their narratives they say they are having sex with each other despite the range of emotions from the affair. They say they have been having more sex with each other than ever before. Both feel it is an implicit message to one another that the affair will be resolved and they will get back to their normal lives. They think having a lot of sex with each other during recovery minimizes the affair partner’s behavior and repairs the problems that lead to the affair.

photo credit: Natalia Mindru Photomicona
couple exercising reclamation sex after an affair

This is far from being true. Sex is happening because the partners want to reclaim their love for each other. They want to reclaim their bodies to each other as there exists a breach in physical boundaries. The act of sex is symbolic in that they are the primary relationship and any third party is not part of union. The hurt partner may be having a lot of sex to keep the affair partner from any more contact with the “lover.” The “other woman” presents a threat to the primary relationship, and as a dog marks its territory so does do the people in affair recovery. The affair partner may be having a lot of sex to make up for the guilt and shame and to show remorse for devastating the hurt partner. Showing each other physical intimacy helps reassure any insecurities for the time being.

In affair recovery we talk about the reasons for the affair. The process helps the affair partner gain some insight to his/her behavior and why he/she went down that bad road. To be able to articulate that insight to the hurt partner while the hurt partner learns to appropriately manage their emotions is the single best indicator that prognosis will be good.

Couples therapist

Having sex with your partner after an affair is actually quite normal. There is no judgement or criticism while in affair recovery. Information gathering to obtain insight is crucial to recovery. And having sex in the meantime doesn’t necessarily mean one way or the other for the future of the relationship.

For more information about reclamation sex and affair recovery please visit my website CouplesCounselorSanDiego.com or call me at (858) 735-1139.

Is Your Husband Depressed?

Is Your Husband Depressed? Depression isn’t just a female condition. It’s true depression is more common in females than in males.  The prevalence is due to biological, hormonal and social factors unique to women, however, depression isn’t just a female thing. The National Institute of Mental Health  (NIMH) shows in a 2017 study the following:

  • An estimated 17.3 million adults in the United States had at least one major depressive episode. This number represented 7.1% of all U.S. adults.
  • The prevalence of major depressive episode was higher among adult females (8.7%) compared to males (5.3%).

Man in denial about his depression

Depression is not to be taken lightly. Clinical depression goes far beyond “having a bad day.” We tend not to recognize depression in men because the disorder itself is looked at as unmanly. Depression carries the stain of stigma of mental illness and also the stigma of femininity. Women in a relationship with a depressed man are often faced with a painful dilemma.  As a marriage counselor, couples come in to see me for communication issues, loss of intimacy, and infidelity. Often times the presenting problems have underlying issues of male depression.

Women married to depressed men have two options. They can either confront him about his depression or collude with him minimizing it. There’s already a certain amount of shame that goes with having depression in general, but for a man, it is shame filled and shameful. Depression in men goes unrecognized and unacknowledged by the men who suffer and by those around them. The hidden condition is enormous. Men and women handle feelings differently. Females are socialized to allow for emotional expressiveness and foster emotional connection while being systematically discouraged from asserting their authentic selves. Males are socialized to greatly encourage their assertive public selves while being discouraged from exercising emotional connectedness and developing skills for making and appreciating that connection.

As a result, men tend to internalize their feelings and when these feelings are left suppressed or repressed, they can erupt like a volcano. Depression in some men can manifest itself through rage, aggressiveness, withdrawal, irritability, and frustration. Physical symptoms include headaches, feelings of restlessness, agitation, appetite change, fatigue to name a few. Alcohol and drug abuse/dependency, as well as working long hours at the job, is another sign where the underlying issue is depression.

No two people are affected the same way by depression and there is no “one-size-fits-all” for treatment. Typically medication and talk therapy is the mode of treatment. As a marriage and family therapist, men I work with are opposed to medication as they think taking medication is a sign of weakness. I tell them if they had Leukemia or Diabetes they would surely have no qualms about taking them. In addition to medication and counseling men can incorporate some of these tips to managing their depression:

  • Regularize your schedule. Eat, sleep, exercise at the same time.
  • Try to be active and exercise.
  • Set realistic goals for yourself.
  • Try to spend time with other people and confide in a trusted friend or relative.
  • Try not to isolate yourself, and let others help you.
  • Expect your mood to improve gradually, not immediately.
  • Postpone important decisions. Discuss decisions with others who know you well and have a more objective view of your situation.
  • Continue to educate yourself about depression.

Couples therapist

It may take some trial and error to find the treatment that works best for you but doing nothing will have you feeling and doing more of the same. Contact me at (858) 735-1139 or email me at [email protected] for more information about male depression and what it’s doing to you and your family.