I have transformed from a clueless mom in this area to a safe harbor for open, loving discussions.Graduate Student
On sexuality education at home
Dr. Dae had the ability to cut through all of the negative crap I had been telling myself for 20 years. She believed in me and taught me that I deserved to believe in myself. I am forever changed.Female Indv. Therapy Client
Wow! Way to teach a class!!!Graduate Student
University of South Florida
Ask Dr. Dae
We all have questions about love, relationships and sex! Want me to answer yours?
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So, Dr. Dae, would you consider decreased intimacy as a symptom and not a cause of strained relationships?
Great question! A lot of that depends on gender and perception.
Many men express love and affection primarily through physical intimacy, thus would feel resentful, angry or hurt if that intimacy was diminished… for HIM, it would be the cause of the strain on the relationship.
On the other hand, most women need to feel love and affection in order to be physically intimate, thus any resentment, anger or hurt she is feeling would lead to decreased intimacy… for HER, that would become a symptom of the strained relationship.
The good news is, regardless how different we are… no matter where the disconnect stems from… with communication, commitment and compromise there is a way to find happy common ground!
I hadn’t realized there was anything behind that ‘tune out’ time at the end of the night. This is something for me to think about. Why do I choose other chores over spending time with the one I most want to spend time with? Hmm?
We want to “wrap things up” at the end of the night… do all of the chores that didn’t get done while running around all day. But there will always be a sock on the floor, a toy out of place.
For some it’s simply about changing gears and focusing on what’s really important, but for others it can be more difficult. Busy-work can be used as an avoidance tactic due to previous conflict in the relationship or fears about intimacy.
Good for you for exploring this for yourself! Let me know if I can help, because I guarantee that connecting with your partner will be more fulfilling than a load of perfectly folded laundry any day!
Dr. Dae, I know it’s a good idea to have a night planned for just mommy and daddy but I resent the fact that I’m the one that has to plan it – not my husband. He has no problem planning a golf outing or a card night with friends so why is it so difficult for him to take control and make the plans? Thank you.
Good for you for pursuing the elusive DATE NIGHT! In my article I encourage you to ASK to get your needs met. Instead of simply hoping and being disappointed time and time again (which eventually leads to the resentment you mentioned).
He may be accustomed to you making the plans around the house, he may think you don’t mind or he just may not have thought of it himself. Barring any other conflicts, let your husband know how much you’d like a “throwback date”. One where chivalry abounds, HE takes the reigns and you get swept off your feet. Set a timeline so you can arrange for the kiddos to be taken care of (and so he knows you’re serious).
Share with him that you are eagerly anticipating some time alone and reinforce his efforts with a playful phone call, e-mail or text. Don’t be shy about letting him know that you appreciate his taking the initiative and that he just may get lucky as a result!
Dear Dr Dae~
I am the first to tell this to everyone I know, yet find it near impossible to practice myself. Why is it so difficult to accept compliments and praise from others? Even when inside you know you might kind of deserve it, there is still that shadow of doubt?
It takes some exploration of your self-talk. Sadly, more often than not, we are our own worst enemies rather than our own biggest fans. Challenge negative messages that you may still be carrying around with you from childhood. I am not playing the blame-game here, but many of us adopt a critical voice from the past and make it our own. Reject those old tapes playing over and over! Be very aware of how you speak to yourself… what may seem insignificant (berating oneself for making a mistake) impacts self esteem and self worth long term. Daily affirmations can help as well as surrounding yourself with positive and loving people who encourage you to practice what you preach… because you deserve it.