7 Ways to Have Healthier Fights

I’ve learned some of my best relationship lessons the hard way — from real (and sometimes taxing) experiences. It took a lot of trial and error to learn how to handle arguments in a healthy manner. Along with the patience of a great woman, I’ve discovered a few tips to help keep your relationship strong during the occasional conflict.

Touch During Arguments

Creating a physical connection is a tangible reminder of how you feel about each other. It can be difficult to think clearly in the heat of the moment, but remind yourself to be close and touch in some way. When I started holding hands with my girlfriend during arguments, we stayed calmer and it helped prevent things from getting out of hand.

Be Specific

How can you expect your partner to know what’s wrong if you haven’t told them? Sometimes we’re so emotionally stirred that we forget to communicate the actual issue at hand. Instead of just saying “I’m so mad right now!” get specific. Say “I’m upset because I feel you don’t respect my interests.” Be clear to avoid misunderstandings.

Keep Your Voices Down

I’ve had my fair share of shouting matches and it’s not the way to go. Once someone raises their voice, the situation escalates and before you know it you’ll both be screaming. If your partner is getting loud, remind them gently that you both should talk at a reasonable level.

Eliminate Vulgarity

Nothing good ever comes out of swearing during a fight. It only makes us more upset and defensive. In your head, a passionate sentence with a swear or two gets your point across clearly. In your partner’s head, it sounds hurtful and is an unexpected blow. You don’t need to cuss to make your feelings known.

Stick to the Topic at Hand

I used to break this rule often. If you’re fighting about a current subject, don’t bring up old issues. Don’t start ranting about her messy apartment or the time she forgot to pick you up from the airport. Those things have passed and you need to focus on one issue at a time – what’s going on right then.

Avoid Personal Attacks

How does it make you feel when someone insults you directly? You’re not adding any positive value to the argument and I can guarantee it’ll make things worse. Instead of using “you” as in “You never listen to me!” use the “I” pronoun. “I feel like you don’t understand what I’m trying to say.” It avoids putting direct pressure on the other person.

Apologize When You’re Wrong

This is the hardest part I’ve had to overcome and I’m glad I can finally do it. If you’re talking through an argument and you realize that you’re in the wrong, admit it quickly and apologize sincerely. Protecting your ego and being prideful will stop you from resolving fights and drag things out.

Tips for Effective Parenting Through a Divorce

For many people, the divorce process is a gut-wrenching one, filled with emotional turmoil and upheaval even in the most amicable of circumstances. When you add children into the mix, the process only gets more complicated; the little ones you swore you would protect from life’s hurricanes are now caught in the eye of the storm. What’s a parent to do? When your world is turned upside down, there is hope. By following a few basic steps, you can keep your sanity and bring your children through this difficult time.

Types of Divorcing Parents

Before we talk about healthy parenting, we need to take a quick look at what isn’t. Divorce is like a psychedelic drug – it can make otherwise competent and rational parents become strung-out messes, babbling incoherently and abandoning all pretense of maturity. Many parents fall into one of two categories during this time:

Good Time Charlie (or Charlotte)

These parents are concerned with winning some imaginary popularity contest with their kids. Every visitation consists of late nights, junk food, movies, and throwing rules out the window. Go to “Chuck E’ Cheese” every Saturday? Sure thing! Homework? No way – that’s your Dad’s problem! We’re gonna have fun! These kids return to the other parent with a ‘Disney World’ hangover and absolute disdain for boundaries. Mom ceases to be a Mom: she is a “buddy.”

The Ostrich

Yes, folks, there is a 51st state in America – the State of Denial. Unfortunately, many parents, like the ostrich, choose to bury their heads in the sand and leave the kids to fend for themselves. These moms and dads, so wrapped up in their anger or sadness, fail to take care of all but the most basic needs of their children. The end result? Already vulnerable kids resort to any means necessary to get attention and validation.  No parenting is just as damaging as weak parenting.

Effective Parenting Tips During Divorce

So what can you do during these trying times? When so many things are uncertain, what our children need can be broken down to three points:

Be Consistent & Be Clear

More than ever your kids need to know where they stand with you, and look to you for stability and security with so much change. Even if you are moving to a new home (or a new city!), there is an immense amount of comfort for kids in the familiar routines. Whether it is as simple as the same bedtime they had when you were married, or new habits that symbolize your new family unit, these patterns help children realize that all will eventually be well. Likewise, they need clear direction on the rules, whether it is about homework, hygiene, or between-meal snacks. This may not result in winning the aforementioned popularity contests, but remember parents, this isn’t American Idol! J


With so many electronic distractions today, our kids need to know that they are a priority, especially at this time. Make a point to turn off the computer & TV, put down the iPhone or BlackBerry, and “plug in” to your kids. Whether it is a game of “Go Fish,” reading a favorite story, or drawing pictures together, that investment of time is priceless. Let your children take the lead on planning the activity – it doesn’t have to be a fancy production, just the simple act of showing your kids that they are first place to all the other distractions speaks volumes to your relationship with them.

Create a “Safe Feelings” Zone

As adults, we take for granted how many options we have at our fingertips to cope with the pain of divorce. Between therapists, friends, support groups, and coworkers, we have many resources – often our kids aren’t so lucky. Many children have a hard time expressing how they feel and don’t know where to turn to get help in dealing with everything that is going on. That’s where you come in! Our children often fear being honest with us due to loss of love, or fear of reprisal. Your job is to create a safe place in which they can open up about their feelings and talk about them without judgment.

My kids and I have a routine in which they get 20 minutes a day of my undivided attention to talk about anything that’s on their mind, no holds barred. Sometimes we talk about problems at mom’s house. More often, we talk about school, band, homework, mean friends, or mean siblings! The point is that they know that they have my complete focus and can express what’s on their mind. It is amazing to me the difference it has made in how they are able to cope with trying situations. They don’t always use the 20 minutes, but they know it is there when they need it.

So there you have it – my two cents on parenting while navigating the turbulent waters of divorce. There are a number of great books out there on parenting through a divorce, but I hope that this post offers a few tips to guide you, regardless of where you are on your journey.

Secrets of Flirting Online for Mature

Naturally, we all like being loved and having someone so smitten about you that their world would crash without you. In the current pandemic era where you might be working remotely and not having many physical interactions with other people, having an online flirt mate can spice up your life and give you something to look forward to each day. For every single person, mature women chat opens an opportunity for flirting and can make us feel good. It has positive effects on health, psychological wellbeing, and building relationships.

If you have never tried online dating and flirting, it’s good to note that a lot of people have gotten lucky and met their soul mates online. You could start off on a flirty mode and drive each other crazy with internet romance. As you go about your chores, every time your phone beeps, you hope it’s your crush going on and on about how you’ve got the cutest boobs in the world. Let’s look at some divine secrets of flirting online for mature.

Flirting in Online Chat Rooms Is Fun and Safe

Online dating is real and so much fun when you are on a reputable platform with state-of-the-art online chat rooms. Usually, you just need to create a user profile, splash something on the bio and upload some of your best pics to drive suitors crazy. You also get to customize your search for the ideal person to flirt with based on factors like their age bracket and distance radius from you.

Whenever you come across a user profile that you can’t pass, don’t just drop a like, send a DM. The cutie you are smitten about might have an eye on you as well and just waiting for that hi. Online chat rooms provide a safe and fun environment for you to enjoy naughty flirting with your crush. With how the pandemic lockdowns have restricted a lot of people to their homes, some wild online sex with your attractive crush might be the way to go for that much-needed release.

Tips for Matures

To succeed in flirting and dating, there are some basic tips that you need to keep in mind:

  • cultivate a positive state of mind

Positivity helps if you are planning to succeed in flirting and dating online. As you create that user profile, believe that someone special is waiting for you out there, and be prepared to meet them with a positive mind. Make a habit of scanning for available matches and liking profiles, and you might get a like back. From there, you just paw on each other in the online chat rooms.

For flirting to work, you must make your partner feel wanted, and a huge part of that is by listening to them with undivided attention. To properly get to know someone, develop a keen interest in what they have to say.

Just because you are flirting virtually in online chat rooms doesn’t mean that you have to develop some fake persona and pretend that you are something that you are not. Just be yourself, and everyone else is taken.

Why Is It Good to Flirt at These Ages?

Even when working remotely in the confines of your own home, flirting in online chat rooms can bring joy into your life and reduce stress. Flirting is actually very healthy in your senior years and offers you some much-needed constructive distraction. The feeling of being madly wanted by someone has a way of naturally making us feel happy.


Hot Monogamy | Loveawake.com blog

Familiarity and sexual boredom in a long-term relationship can cause people to stray. At handbag we have the solution: learn to play with your partner instead of playing away

So it’s finally happened. Whether it’s stepping over his smelly socks for the third day on the run, or timing your weekly sex session to be over before ‘Desperate Housewives’, one day you’ll probably wake up and realize the spark has gone out of your relationship. Should you meet someone at this point who seems to relight that spark, you could be on the road to an affair.

One in six people now admit to having an affair, and around half of marriages end in divorce. The question you have to ask yourself is, do I really want to jeopardize this relationship, and risk all the pain an affair involves, just because bedroom boredom has set in?

If the answer is no, and you’re looking to spice things up without gambling on your relationship, follow our guide to having an affair with your partner!

Let’s talk about sex, baby…

To improve your sex life, communication must come first (so to speak). Use positive comments rather than negative criticism, talk about what you like and dislike about your sex life. To do this, you will both have to turn away from the TV, magazines or the PlayStation, and really listen to each other.

Many sex problems spring from one partner having a higher sex drive (usually – but not always – the man). Scientifically, this stems from increased amounts of testosterone in men. Emotionally, for many women, it can also stem from what they feel is a lack of intimacy in other areas of their lives. Women may want to hug, hold hands and kiss sometimes, whereas some men just want the act itself.

Worse still, one sex therapist, Helen Crohn from Vibratorguru.com, suggests, ‘When some couples can’t agree why they’re not having as much sex, they come up with totally different excuses for it.’ You have to get past the excuses, which is where mutual communication comes in.

Get intimate…

Dr Patricia Love (yes, it’s really her name) is a therapist who has helped over 12,000 couples with sex and relationship problems. In her book ‘Hot Monogamy’, she sees intimacy as ‘communicating on a personal level’. For many people, and women in particular, it is lack of intimacy that can turn your sex life into something of a chore. And we all know where this can lead…

Practice makes perfect

Good sex does not come naturally (especially after a long time together). Without communication, both partners can spend years doing things their partner hates. Give clear, specific messages and plenty of time over to foreplay. Tracey Cox, of ‘Would Like To Meet’ fame, has this to say about foreplay: ‘Happiness isn’t a destination; it’s a means of travelling.’ This old saying can be applied to foreplay. Rush through the ‘travelling’ and you might find the destination isn’t quite as exciting as you’d expected. Lavish attention on the whole body and you can’t help but take your time.’

Variety is the spice of life!

Once you and your partner have made your likes and dislikes clear, it’s time to start working on sexual variety. There is a wealth of lovemaking techniques to try, and plenty of books, guides and sex toys to help you. So now you know what each other wants, go out and buy them!

Romance can lead to who knows where!

Whatever happened to romance? After several years together it’s hard to keep up the good habits you were so keen on in your dating days, but never say never! Okay, so the initial feelings that were so wonderful in the beginning never usually make it past a year and it’s tough to feel romantic when experts like to point out that this ‘infatuation’ with one another is actually a chemical reaction. After a while, his skinny legs and your 40-a-day habit only lead to wandering eyes… suddenly Brian in accounts looks more appealing…

But! Remain vigilant and be prepared to take the bull by its horn (quite literally!). If you are really serious about keeping the marriage flame flickering, then make it your mission to bring romance back into the home. One expert, Dr Arthur Aron, spent a shocking 20 years researching the subject of infidelity and (eventually) concluded that the recipe for lasting romance is ‘knowing that that person loves you’. Romance does not have to cost anything – start by doing little things that you know will make them happy. Habit can erode these romantic gestures, which is another reason people turn to affairs. For many women, coming home to find their dinner unexpectedly cooked for them can be the biggest turn-on of all.

Learn to love your body

Images of so-called perfection in the media can leave the average person (usually women) feeling miserable about her own body. If the years, children and chocolate bars have taken a toll on your body, this doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy hot sex. Your partner has most likely got their own love handles to worry about, and unless you are really willing to shed those pounds (and shaping up together can spice your love life up more than you might think!), you have to learn to live – and love – with them.

Sensuality and passion

Strangely, the more familiar you are with someone, the more likely you are to hold back. True sensuality and passion require intimacy, trust and removal of inhibitions. With better understanding, you and your partner can start working on the five senses: sight, smell, hearing, touch and taste. If just thinking about these possibilities gets you heated, you’re probably nearer to hot monogamy than you think.

3 Free Tools To Persuade Your Boyfriend To Quit Smoking

Being in an intimate relationship with a smoker when you can’t stand the cancer sticks yourself can place a great strain on the time you spend together. It’s an inconvenience, it stinks, and costs a lot of money – not to mention the impact on their health and the worry that could cause.

It’s understandable then that if your boyfriend smokes, you would to do anything you can to persuade him to stop. Try these three free tools that will help persuade your boyfriend to kick the habit for good.

The Quit Kit is available free from the NHS and contains an abundance of tools including addiction test, Smoke 51 and other.

The Quit Kit includes:

An ‘addiction test’, featuring essential tips designed to increase willpower. The test has been formulated to get you thinking (and remembering) why you want to quit, while also helping you to learn what it is that triggers your nicotine cravings.

Free expert help including access to expert MP3 downloads that have been scientifically proven to help reduce nicotine cravings.

The health/wealth wheel that helps smokers see what difference quitting will make to their health and their bank balance.

Tangle – a toy designed to keep hands and fingers occupied when the urge to light up arises.

A ‘quitting’ wall chart calendar that lets you cross off each successful smoke free day.

A free android application, ‘Quit Smoking: Cessation Nation’ incorporates gaming, social, stats, and progress monitoring, into a fantastic quit smoking tool that’s fit for the 21st Century.

The app includes:

Ability to save stats including the date you quit, the exact time since your last cigarette, and the amount of money you’ve saved.

A ‘craving crusher game’ that takes 3 minutes and is designed to help pass the time during the worst of your cravings.

The ability to earn achievements.

Integration with Facebook to allow you to get involved in the ‘Cessation Nation’ community.

Previous and current users of the application have made such comments as ‘it’s fun to see how much money has been saved’, it ‘helps them to feel good about themselves’ and that the ‘Facebook page is full of fellow quitters that offer loads of support’.

Another user has stated that they’ve downloaded a number of similar apps , and have since deleted all but ‘Cessation Nation’.

If your boyfriend owns an iPhone rather than an android model, ‘Stop Smoking Hypnotherapy’ stands to be a good alternative to Cessation Nation; even if it does work rather differently.

This app uses the still somewhat controversial practice of hypnosis to tap into your subconscious and change the way you think; curbing cravings and supposedly, helping people to quit with minimal effort.

How does it work?

Your boyfriend will partake in a number of hypnosis sessions during which he will relax the mind and listen to hypnotic suggestions designed to completely curb the desire to smoke. While the app does say the hypnosis will take quite a few sessions to take full effect, some users have reported that they have quit smoking completely after just a single session.

What happens?

Hypnosis delivers information to the unconscious mind which will then be passed through to our conscious thoughts and bring about the changes to our lives that we desire.

When information is presented to our unconscious mind it’s accepted as the truth – whereas when this same information is presented to our conscious mind, all manner of other thoughts and ideas come into play that stop us from simply taking the message at face value.

By tapping into our unconscious mind we can filter through positive thoughts and messages to the mind we use every day.

However, if you want to persuade your boyfriend to quit, there’s only so much you can do. In reality, he will only quit if he wants to, and when he’s ready – however, when that time comes, you can be there with an abundance of professionally designed and user-backed tools that will help him along his way to a smoke free future.

Helping A Loved One Who Takes Drugs

It’s difficult seeing someone you love suffer from the effects of drugs. It’s just as difficult to see him withdrawing from people who could help him recover from his drug addiction. However, withdrawal from people is oftentimes one of the effects of drug addiction.

People addicted to illegal drugs need help and understanding, and deep down, they know that, too. Unfortunately, there are just so many things that stop them from asking help. Some of these include shame, guilt, and the effects of the illegal drugs.

If you’re having a hard time approaching a loved one who takes drugs, then here are some tips that you can do to help him break his drug habit.

Take Care of Yourself

Drug addiction is a problem, and dealing with it is difficult. However, this does not mean that you have to get caught up in the middle of his drug addiction, so much so that you’re no longer taking care of yourself properly. Remember, he will need you to be there for him, and if you don’t take care of yourself properly, who can he turn to when he finally admits that he needs help?

Talk to Him

He knows that he has a drug problem, but he’ll pretend that he doesn’t. He’ll even pretend to himself that nobody knows of his drug addiction. If you speak up and let him know that you’re willing to help, then he could also open up to you and admit his drug addiction problem. The earlier the problem is addressed, the earlier the addiction will be treated, and the sooner the drug addict can get better.

Of note though; the drug addict won’t admit his problems immediately. He’ll give excuses to avoid the discussion. He will deny that he has a drug addiction problem, and he will even deny that he’s using drugs. You will have to coax the admission out of him, so cite incidences of when you were positive he took drugs and list examples of how drugs changed him.

However, don’t punish him for his choices or berate him for his addiction. Don’t be too preachy, and don’t sermon him. This may make him clam up and withdraw from you all the more.

Move On

Don’t rush him when he begins to take positive steps toward recovery. The process is a long one, and you will need to have a lot of patience and understanding when he starts going through withdrawal symptoms.

Do everything in your power to keep him from falling off the wagon. List down his triggers and help him avoid them. Go over the house and help him get rid of his hidden stash of drugs. You don’t want any temptation lying around the house.

It’s also advisable that you check his vehicle for stashes of drugs. If he’s stopped and caught in possession of a controlled substance, he might end up in jail, in which case you will need a good criminal defense lawyer to help with his case.

So do not wait for your loved one to hit rock bottom before you help him. Do it now if you want to avoid further complications.

The Dating Game – Nothing for Something

The Date Setup

Mark was handsome with an athletic build.  He lived in the ritzy part of town and he was interested in meeting me, a chubby girl with acne with very little extra spending money.  We met through an online dating sight and when he asked to meet, I quickly agreed.

“There’s a coffee shop a block away from my apartment, why don’t you just meet me at my place and we’ll walk down together.  You won’t find parking anywhere else.”  He tells me over the phone.  I jot down his address, print of the directions from mapquest and head over to his place.

Mapquest directed me thirty minutes out of the way and when I called Mark to let him know that I got lost and I was running late, he told me not to worry.

Once I found his place, I was in awe. It was a high rise building with views of the ocean.  The valet outside of his apartment building took my keys and moved my car before I got my eyes off of the building. I walked through the glass doors and headed to the 9th floor to pick Mark up for our date.

The Date Plan

I’m not used to picking men up for dates so the feelings of doubt rose in my chest with each step I took towards his door. I knocked, pushed my hair off of my neck and anticipated our first to first meet. He opened the door, gave me a smile, leaned in and kissed me.

“Uh, hi.”  I said after his lips met mine.

“Hello.” His lips fell on mine again and he pulled me into his apartment, slamming the door behind us.  My lips were in panic mode since I wasn’t really sure what was happening.  I didn’t remember agreeing to a make out session in his apartment or even a booty call but clearly, Mark didn’t get the memo.

I confess, while he was kissing me, I took the time to look around his apartment and just as I expected from the exterior of the building, the interior was amazing. His place was fabulous and clean. And honestly, I didn’t mind him kissing me even though we’d only said hello to each other.

After a few minutes, he stopped kissing me. I awkwardly asked if he was ready to head to the coffee shop and he gave me a nod. Then, his cell phone rang. “I gotta take this. Why don’t you head down stairs and I’ll meet you in a few. We can take your car.” Mark says as he shoves me out the door.

The Date Aftermath

I walk down the hallway to the elevator feeling like I was taking the walk of shame. I questioned whether the previous five minutes had happened or if my wild imagination had run away with me again. I got to the lobby and handed the valet my ticket.  He returned with my car and told me it was $15.

I laughed. “What!  No, I was just gone for 5 minutes. I was just picking someone up.”

He hands me my keys and tells me that I can wait for the person I was picking up for a minute but I still had to pay.

I only had $10 cash on me. I tried to explain this to the valet and after several minutes of attempting to work things out, he took the last bit of cash that I had on me.

Twenty minutes later, Mark still hadn’t appeared in the lobby and the valet was knocking on my window. “You can’t sit here.”

“I’m just waiting for someone. He was on the phone when I left, he should be here any minute.” I explained to the valet again. “Let me just call him and see how long he’ll be, ok?” With the valet watching, I dialed Mark’s number and listened to it ring, and ring, and ring.

No answer. I dialed again and it went straight to voicemail.

It was at that moment and the evil glare given to me by the valet that I realized that Mark had stood me up for our date while I was waiting for him in his parking lot. Plus, our 5 minute meet had cost me the only cash I had on me and that was only because the valet took my deal of getting $10 verse the $15 that I owed him.

So, I left the fancy apartment, I left the good looking guy that lied to me and I left the cruel valet and headed home, only to get lost again.

The Dating Dilemmas of a Contemporary Theologian

The “rocky road” to love has more often than not felt like a Himalayan mountain climb for me. Of course, there has been plenty of “suitors” as my mother’s generation would have called them, some even managing to get through the front door and sit in the good front room, which was only used at Christmas. “Don’t worry if my dad doesn’t talk to you” I’d say as I walked down the road with my new boyfriend, “he doesn’t talk to any of the lads I bring home!” What confidence I must have bestowed in my latest fancy – advance warning that my dad would hate his guts and a confession that I was a serial dater!

Some twenty years later and I’m back playing the dating game once more and the rules haven’t changed one bit. It’s the same old place only it’s called “Mantra” now and somehow, instead of it being full of “auld lads on the pull,” it’s full of lads I used to baby-sit! Instead of Geldolf asking me to “feed the world,” Lady Ga Ga is asking me to poke her face! So my friend Lesley decided that this was ridiculous and she signed us up for a night out speed dating in “Howl at the Moon” in Dublin.

When we arrived twenty-five pairs of male eyes ran up and down our bodies, lingering far too long in all the wrong places (the right and only places on a woman as far as they were concerned I suppose) and watched us both as we came down the few steps to the registration desk. Their eyes were burning holes in the back of my head as we signed the forms. “I wish someone else would come through those doors” I thought but no, it looked as though we were the last to arrive and so we had to cross the ever-growing dance floor to our seats with twenty-five heads turning simultaneously as we passed.

And so, the speed dating rules were read out, the bell rang, and man number one sat down in front of woman number one and man number twenty-four sat down in front of me, “Julie 24.” How I wished at that moment that I was twenty-four. You see, Lesley had booked us into an age group of thirty-five to fifty. “Tony 24” had been generous to himself when he said he was forty-five. I had definitely seen younger forty-five year olds in the nursing home! The conversations all seemed to head in the same direction – your name, your age, where you were from and what you do for a living. Isn’t it quite amazing how much stock we seem to put in a person’s livelihood? Does is make any difference if he or she is a doctor, a bank clerk, or a bus driver? Is this where we place our human worth? Anyway, the minute I would mention that I was a student the “date” would naturally ask “what do you study?” “Theology” I’d reply. “Oh… do you want to be a nun?” he’d ask. “Yes” I’d say. “That’s why I’m out speed dating because I want to be a nun!” As if this hadn’t been bad enough, the other usual question was “have you ever done this before?” Unfortunately for me, when “Dave 19” asked me this question and I replied “no, this is my first time to try it.” He launched himself from his chair, did some sort of hula dance around the table and announced to the whole room “whey hey hey I’ve got a speed dating virgin!”

It didn’t get any prettier from there on in. I met “Frank 4” who had “love” and “hate” tattooed on his fingers and just to add to his magnificent artwork he had “all cops are bas###ds” tattooed across the back of his hand. I’m also sure that “John 15” was a serial killer and, as for the rest of them, well they were only looking for one thing and one thing only. The only person I had a laugh with that night was “Niall 14.” The poor guy had signed up to the wrong age group and was only twenty-two. We chatted freely and we both knew that the situation was rather funny. Now I have to be honest and say that the most enjoyable part of the evening was the bag of greasy chips on the way home through Inchicore. Lesley and I could not stop laughing at the situation we had both found ourselves in.

You would have thought that this was the point when we abandoned all hope but no, we’re not that easily put off. The organisers of the speed dating event had automatically added us to their dating website and within a few days a lot of “winks” and messages were being left on my profile page. There was Andrew who knew that God was working on his behalf to direct me towards him. There was Nafay, a twenty-eight year old bisexual Hindu and John who only had room for a woman who had room for him and Jesus in her life! However, there was also Patrick who seemed to have a lot in common with me and actually seemed to be normal enough. Now Patrick had told me during our online chats that he was thirty-eight, had blue eyes and brown hair, he was self-employed, that he had a degree, loved travelling, books, the theatre, and lots of other things that I also had an interest in.  You can imagine my surprise when this fifty-eight year old was sitting in the coffee shop waiting for me the day we met. His hair was brown… all four of them that were dragged across the top of his head with a pound of brylcreem and I quickly discovered that everything he had said online was without an ounce of truth. I think it was Einstein who once said that it is difficult to say what truth is but sometimes it is so easy to recognise falsehood! He didn’t like travelling, books or the theatre and had said it all to make himself sound more interesting. The most exciting thing this guy had ever done was get up early one morning for the opening of a new Tesco store!

Now, my mother had always told me that if a lad crossed the dance floor and asked me to dance in front of all his friends that the decent thing to do was to dance with him no matter what he looked like or who he was because it takes a lot of guts to ask a girl to dance with the fear of rejection looming so, I sat in the coffee shop with Patrick for almost two hours trying to make conversation with the guy rather than calling him a big liar and chucking the coffee in his face. I won’t be doing that again!

And so reader it is with a not so heavy heart that I have decided that online dating, speed dating, or any other form of dating that includes a profit-yearning third party is not for me. When Pope Benedict said that “love, in the true sense, is not always a matter of giving way, being soft, and just acting nice… a sugar-coated Jesus or a God who agrees to everything and is never anything but nice and friendly is no more than a caricature of real love,” he must have known something about speed dating or online dating, where everything is sugar-coated and nice, but none of which is real!

(Quote is from God and the World: Believing and Living in our Time, p. 186.)

What About Your Parents? | Loveawake.com blog

Between raising kids on your own, working, managing a home and maybe squeezing in an ounce of time for yourself here and there, spending time with parents or grandparents can be hard to do.

Depending on your age, your parents might a certain level of care — care you might not have time to provide. Whether you’re serving as a primary caretaker for an elderly parent or even if you’re just a single parent who wants to spend more time with your own parents, taking the time to respect your elders and carving out moments to spend together is incredibly rewarding.

If you aren’t quite sure where to begin, check out these few tips for finding a balance between caring for your parents and caring for your kids.

  • Safety: One of the most important aspects of caring for elderly parents is making sure they are safe and sound within their own home. An elderly alert system is a great idea, especially for parents who live alone, have special medical needs or a history of falls. Taking the time to invest in a life alert system for your aging parent will keep them safe and give you the peace of mind in knowing they can get help immediately in the event of an emergency.
  • Family Outings: One of the best ways to spend time with your parents and kids simultaneously is to schedule a family outing. Your destination obviously depends on the health and mobility of your parent and should be taken into consideration when choosing a location. If your parents are able, a quick weekend getaway would be a nice change of pace for everyone. If you don’t have the time or money to get away for a weekend, an afternoon together at their favorite eatery or bakery is fun for the whole family.
  • Craft Time: Having the kids create a special craft for Grandma or Grandpa and then delivering it gives you the opportunity to spend time with both parties. Work with your kids to help them compile a photo album, photo spread, picture frame or other keepsake and then go over and deliver it together. Grandparents love memories and crafts, so combining the best of both worlds should be an obvious choice!
  • Spending A Night In: For parents with limited mobility or special health needs, spending a night at home with family is always a welcome luxury. Bring the kids over to their place for a while, bring dinner or cook when you get there and spend an hour or two enjoying an old movie, playing a game or looking through photographs. It’s a great way to de-stress after a busy day or week and leaves everyone feeling upbeat!

By learning to combine spending time with your parents and spending time with kids and giving your parents the tools they need to be safe, you can show your family the respect they deserve. Taking time out here and there to spend time with parents and kids is one of the greatest things you’ll ever do!

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Alex Wise served over 5 years as relationship expert helping women from around the world figure out the men in their love lives from an honest, male perspective. Alex is one of the contributors and editors for Loveawake.com dating website. He is passionate about thought leadership writing, and regularly contributes to various career, social media, public relations, branding, and online dating communities.

A Dating Quiz: Are You a Sexpert or a Lame Flirt?

Statistics from dating websites suggest that sex is really not that important. In fact, people in happy, sexual, dating relationships report that sex makes up only 10 percent of their partnership. This may not seem like much until you realize that sleep takes up 33 percent of your life, and work another 33 percent. And these are only the happy relationships. Once a couple’s ability to satisfy each other starts dipping in the red, the importance of sex jumps to 80 percent. This means that if you are not up to par between the sheets, your dating success rate could suffer drastically. What you know about sex could one day save your relationship. Let’s find out how much you really know.

Dating Quiz Questions

1. A guy is more likely to cheat if he earns less than $5,000 a year, than if he earns over $60,000?

a. True

b. False

2. The majority of Americans have lost their virginity during the month of…

a. January

b. February

c. June

d. October

3. Per capita, there are more twenty year-old virgins today than there were in the late 1950s.

a. True

b. False

4. What percentage of dating website members have engaged in sexual intercourse in a garden?

a. 3 percent

b. 11 percent

c. 20 percent

d. 33 percent

5. Statistics suggest less than 30 percent of U.S. males prefer women who shave their pubic region.

a. True

b. False

6. What does the word “formicophilia” refer to?

a. The fear of being filmed during sex

b. The fear of sex with an alien

c. The desire to wear tight underwear

d. The desire to have small insects crawling on your genitalia

7. A guy’s appendage will swell during sporting events; especially when his team is winning.

a. True

b. False

8. Which of these household ingredients could turn a date into an all-night sex-athon?

a. Chocolate

b. Tomatoes

c. Avocados

d. All the Above

9. _______ dating couples are driven to the hospital each year after attempting a bizarre sex act.

a. 100

b. 1,000

c. 7,000

d. 11,000

10. Research suggests for a man’s sexual appendage to naturally gain length and girth, he must…

a. Exercise regularly, which includes a regular program of sex

b. Take the vitamin, Saw Palmetto

c. Eat dark chocolate

d. Use any of the advertised growth pills on television

Survey Says:

  1. b- False. Surveys suggest that seventy percent of dating website’s members who earn over $60,000 have cheated on a partner at least once. Only 16 percent of men who make less than $5,000 cheat.
  2. c- More people lose their virginity in June than any other month. Try getting a plane ticket to the U.S. Virgin Islands during June, and you’ll seriously wonder if Saint Ursula and her 11,000 virgins are only a myth.
  3. a- True. There are more virgins today. However, we dare you to find one on a dating website… actually, we double dog dare you!
  4. c- Twenty percent of couples have engaged in sexual intercourse in a garden, which is why you should always wash your vegetables.
  5. b- False. Statistics suggest that 67 percent of men prefer women who shave, and the “Brazilian” (everything goes) bikini wax is the preferred method of hair removal.
  6. d- Not much is ever said about this fetish, but there is a good reason for that. Now that you know the name of this activity, we suggest you crumple it up, and throw it out of your memory bank.
  7. b- False. A man’s appendage has been shown to shrink during sporting events, especially while his team is victorious. This is why men will always be unattractive to women while watching a football game naked, with a beer in one hand, and a bowl of chili in the other.
  8. d- Studies suggest the phenyl ethylamine (PEA) in chocolate mimics falling in love, thus setting the mood. Tomatoes help calm pre-sex nerves and improve muscle control, and avocado boosts arousal, providing an intense orgasm due to its high vitamin E content.
  9. d- 11,000 Americans are driven to the hospital each year for attempting a bizarre sex act, and then hesitate to use their real name as they’re being signed in to see the doctor.
  10. a- There isn’t a lot a man can do to increase his size, without going through the medical procedure, known as Phalloplasty. However, according to research, the act of sex itself, which engorges his member with blood, could also boost size over time (we said, could).