By our guest blogger Chris Fariello, PhD, LMFT In my counseling practice, I work with many people who struggle with jealousy for a variety of reasons. It can become a major obstacle to an intimate relationship. Despite how enlightened we think we are, most
Chris Fariello, PhD, LMFT
In my counseling practice, I work with many people who struggle with jealousy for a variety of reasons. It can become a major obstacle to an intimate relationship. Despite how enlightened we think we are, most of us experience jealousy. A few rare individuals never experience jealousy. I advise clients to treat jealousy as a given: assume that it will occur, and be prepared with strategies to successfully address it and minimize the damage.
Jealousy is really a bundle of emotions
We tend to think of jealousy as a single emotion, but actually it is a whole bundle of feelings that tend to get lumped together. Jealousy can manifest as anger, fear, hurt, betrayal, anxiety, agitation, sadness, paranoia, depression, loneliness, envy, feeling powerless, feeling inadequate, feeling excluded, etc. It often helps to identify what is the exact mix of feelings you experience when you feel jealous. What is the primary emotion you feel when you are jealous? Demystifying the exact components of your jealousy can be a giant step towards getting a grip on things and resolving the problem. Is it always the same for you or does the mix change from time to time depending on circumstances?
Jealousy is often based in FEAR
It is crucial to understand what jealousy is and what it is about. Jealousy is about fear– fear of the unknown and of change, fear of losing power or control in a relationship, fear of scarcity and of loss, and fear of abandonment. It is a reflection of our own insecurity about our worthiness, anxiety about being adequate as a lover, and doubts about our desirability.
For every jealous feeling there is an emotion behind the jealousy that is much more significant than the jealousy itself. Behind jealousy there is an unmet need or a deep fear that our needs will not be met. Recognizing those fears and unmet needs is the key to unmasking jealousy and taking away its power. Jealousy is just the finger pointing at the fears and needs we are afraid to face. When jealousy kicks in, it is the ancient reptilian part of our brain going into a “fight or flight” response because we feel that our very survival is threatened. When you feel jealous, ask yourself, “What is it that I am really afraid of? What do I need to make this situation safe for me?” “What is the worst thing that could happen and how likely is that to happen?”
Managing jealousy as a phobic response
Learn to accept jealousy as a normal but exaggerated response to a stressful, emotionally charged change in your life. I often use the phobia model to help clients manage jealous feelings. For instance, if someone were afraid of heights, a therapist would pinpoint exactly what situations frighten that person, and then gradually try to make those situations safe enough to tolerate. By exposing someone with a fear of heights first to a few steps and then to a ladder, and then going up an escalator, and eventually even going to the top of a hill or mountain. By gradually experiencing the situation that triggers the phobia, and by incrementally escalating that exposure, a person can slowly overcome their fears. To treat jealousy, I ask clients to pinpoint as specifically as possible exactly what is triggering jealousy for them.
Identify your jealousy triggers
When you discover exactly what triggers your jealousy, it puts things in perspective. Realizing that you are only jealous of a small piece of the overall picture makes it much more manageable. After identifying you jealousy triggers, you have two basic choices. You can “engineer the problem away” by making agreements with your partner to avoid that particular behavior or situation. Or you can use the “phobia model”, taking the risk of gradually exposing yourself to situations that trigger your jealousy in the hopes that you will learn to tolerate and eventually feel comfortable with it.
It is important to keep in mind that there is no simple and easy solution to jealousy. It usually requires trial and error to discover what works for your individual situation. And jealousy can bring up many powerful feelings and unpredictable emotions. So be gentle with yourself and your partners, and don’t expect instant changes. Try to be understanding of each persons needs and feelings. Make every effort to create a “win- win” situation for everyone by giving each person as much voice as possible in decisions and rule making. And be willing to compromise to make sure everyone’s needs are met.
“In school, you’re taught the lesson and then you’re given the test. In life, you’re given a test that teaches you a lesson.” - Tom Bodett
There was just an article in the Sunday New York Times about sex on campus and girls who ‘hook up.’
That’s the term for having sex just for sex; without emotional involvement. That can be okay for some or for a while but what is the outcome over time?
I don’t think we know, but we have a damn good hunch.
Love includes the brain, the heart, and the body. The most powerful sex organ is the brain.
It triggers whom we are attracted to, and what our thoughts are, and become, about that person.
Many long-term relationships begin with a physical attraction that evolves into mutual appreciation, but some can also go the other way. Whatever; the feelings get into it.
Because of the changing role of women, the goal for a college education is no longer getting
the Mrs. Degree, but working hard toward a future career. As a result, many young women are opting to use their sex drive to have sex and use a guy’s body to get it!
Many reported needing to be drunk or close to it in order to perform. Great!
By senior year a study found that 4 in 10 students are still virgins or have had intercourse with one person. The study is at Online College Social Life Survey. Nearly 3 in 10 said they never had a hookup in college. However, 20 percent of women and a quarter of men said they had hooked up with 10 or more people. Great!
They found that many of the females engaged in oral sex and the males did not care to pleasure them. They also found that wealthier girls engaged in hookups more than their poorer counterparts did.
Many felt ‘raped’ afterwards when the alcohol wore off, and many had ‘reputations’ with both men and women as a result.
Many of those that engaged in hook up activity felt their lives were and would be too busy for a while for a relationship and they wanted to see if someone ‘better’ came along and they wanted to end up married to someone that was finished growing up. Not bad reasons.
My theory is that finding the person that you can really love is a more important goal than anything else, and difficult to find at any age.
A recent book, ’The End of Men’ by Hanna Rosin argues that the hook up strategy is for ambitious young women to have an enjoyable sex life while pursuing their academic and professional goals. Great!
Many of the women said the warnings not to get emotionally involved came not from the feminist culture but from their own parents. Great!
Some of the women said they never wanted marriage. Great!
Let me tell you; guys still control the scene, and most of this hook up stuff goes on at fraternity parties.
Using sex for whatever purpose needs to be understood and at college ages that’s not so easy.
Nationally women outnumber men in college enrollment by 4 to 3 and outperform them in graduation rates and advanced degrees. Men, in the minority, hold the power in the sexual arena and they prefer casual sex to long term situations. No news there.
So, what about longing, waiting and agonizing over his calling, that sweet kiss, the heart throbs, and all that goes into ROMANCE?
If you look at sex on TV you can see the fun and playfulness is missing. Pity. It ain’t sexy!
A movie, “The Look of Love” stars Steve Coogan. When asked about playing the role of the British soft-porn baron, Paul Raymond, he said he realized it was possible to see too many naked women. True, believe it or not. Direct quote, “By the end of shooting, I just wanted to go for a hike in the hills, alone.”
Ladies, invest in a vibrator. You don’t have any emotional attachment there and it works!!!
“The belief that youth is the happiest time of life is founded on a fallacy. The happiest person is the person who thinks the most interesting thoughts, and we grow happier as we grow older.” - William Lyon Phelps
“You never realize death until you realize love” – Katherine Butler Hathaway
We all accumulate, as the late George Carlin said, ”stuff.”
Now some of us have money, property, and or, lots of stuff.
What happens to it at the end? There are no pockets in shrouds, the saying goes.
Hopefully, we have enjoyed the gathering of it all and hopefully we have enjoyed the fruits of our labors.
Most in the end leave everything to the last spouse whether there was love or not. Most leave it then to the ‘ungrateful’ children and the even more ‘ungrateful’ grandchildren. They don’t mean to be that way but many in this generation were given to and learned that was their due. Often you see wealthy parents living rather conservative lives based on their upbringing while their children live it up. Foolish people!
So, let’s look at a few Wills of some famous people.
Jackie Kennedy Onassis was a most thoughtful woman and her Will shows it. She left the bulk of her large estate to her two children but she also bequeathed many personal items and money to a variety of family, friends, and employees. Her money came from both John Kennedy and more from Onassis when she and Bobby Kennedy fought for it from his daughter.
Caroline and John sold most of her memorabilia at Sotheby’s for close to thirty-five million dollars! Taxes took a big chunk of their money.
Joan Crawford was made famous by one of her adopted daughters, Christina, who wrote the book, “Mommie Dearest.”
She had four marriages and four adopted children: Cathy, Cynthia, Christina, and Christopher.
She lived to her late seventies and wrote that she was leaving trust funds of about $77,000 each to her two daughters but nothing to Christina and Christopher, “for reasons which are well known to them.” How cruel.
The book and movie however made Christina quite wealthy. Retribution. You never win a battle with a child.
Crawford, interestingly, left money to about six charities. Wanted to look good, I suppose.
Henry Fonda was another loving parent leaving nothing to his son Peter or daughter Jane.
He left everything to his fifth wife and adopted daughter Amy, from his third marriage.
He wrote in his three page will, ”I have made no provision in this Will for Jane or Peter, or for their families, solely because in my opinion they are financially independent, and my decision is not in any sense a measure of my deep affection for them.” Right! That leaves a sour taste in your mouth for life. But you can’t let it.
It is also a delicate business if one child is better off than another. My own rule of thumb is it should always be equal, as we never know what life will bring.
Not everyone agrees with that.
Frank Sinatra left a very long will and left most of what he had to his fourth wife Barbara who was married to him for twenty-two years, when he died at age 82. His three children were from his first marriage.
He was also generous to many friends and employees.
George Washington died one of the nation’s wealthiest men.
His Will frees his many slaves and leaves his estate to his wife Martha. She had two children from a previous marriage. He wrote his thirty page Will by hand.
John Kennedy wrote that his Will was written, “mindful of the uncertainty of life.” Prophetic. He had a charitable foundation named for his deceased elder brother. His Will was written before he had children and never updated, interestingly, even after he was elected president.
Andy Warhol left an estate in excess of 500 million dollars. He left a small sum to two brothers but the bulk in a foundation managed by a friend, Frederick Hughes. Shortly before he died, he made a videotape and stated, “Death means a lot of money, honey.”
Albert Einstein, died in his sleep at 76.From his first marriage he had two sons and then he married a second cousin, who stayed with him until his death. She was a widow with two daughters.
He, however, had a “secretary-housekeeper” named Helen Dukas who was the top priority in his Will. His brain was kept for scientific study.
A genius and a lover!
John Jacob Astor IV, one of the richest men in America in the early 1900’s, had a fortune of about 200 million.
On the Titanic, he made sure all the women and children were put in lifeboats before himself.
As his pregnant wife left the sinking ship he lit a cigarette and said, “Good-bye, dearie. I’ll see you later.” He never did. Class will tell!!
There you have it. We all end up the same… dead!
“Few men ever drop dead from overwork, but many quietly curl up and die because of under satisfaction.” - Sidney J. Harris
“We are never so defenseless against suffering as when we love, never so forlornly unhappy as when we have lost our love- object or its love.” - Sigmund Freud
We all know that to love and be loved is the ‘It’ of life, but to first find it and then to maintain it is never an easy task.
The finding it is now in a whole new sphere; the internet, cougar night in Silicon Valley and new sexual interest drugs for women. Whole new world… some good, some not so good.
Many people are experiencing the joylessness of sex as a result of the instant hopping into bed.
Looking just at sex on TV shows, the manner in which we are engaging with one another in this arena is without emotion. Sex has been relegated to a transactional , utilitarian obsession.
Anything goes, and it is there in living color for all to observe. Michael Douglas saying his throat cancer was a result of cunnilingus was another example of what would never have been disclosed just a short time ago.
Sexual voyeurism is rampant in many forms. In some cases, it may enhance the viewer’s desire or give them a new idea… that’s not bad; but when it desensitizes the act and there is no feeling of intimacy and caring and longing it falls short and gives a poor message.
Sex today makes me nostalgic for sex just yesterday. It should include longing and fun. Does it for you?
Today instead of looking for Mr. Right, many are settling for Mr. Right Now!
Where does this lead?
Are you saying yes instead of saying no? Does he hear, “No,” or does he hear “Maybe?”
Now sex is vital in my book, and yes, sometimes it can be just sex for sex, or without much caring over time, BUT when does that line get crossed and you are no longer able to get to “Yes” with real intimacy? It seems many have lost the art of communication. The iPhone and texting are not the same!
The other area where this gets played out is when two people disagree or have a heated argument and then it becomes who ‘makes up?’
One older guy I know says he wakes up every day and just announces, ”I’m sorry,” and that protects him all day for whatever his partner may not like that he does or says.
Most of us get bent out of shape when our emotional needs are not met. What gets you hurt?
Figure it out. It will help. We all have Achilles’ heels.
When that awful feeling bubbles up recognize it. Then deal with it.
Teach your partner what they have to do or say to get you back on track. When we say “No,” we are often looking to play cat and mouse and have our partner come to us with a hug, a flower, a poem or whatever to make it right again. Partners should hear, ”Maybe” in their heads when they hear that ”No.” It is often a call to be shown how much we are truly loved. Love is being close ‘in spite of’ not ‘because of.’ And yes saying “I’m sorry,” is important. Then talking after a while maybe with a glass of wine!
Women want to be wooed and men just want to be accepted without harassment.
So, in both realms, sex, and disagreement, “No” is not the final answer, unless you really want it to be.
Living with ups and downs, hateful feelings, and loving feelings are all part of the package.
Being grown up also means living with ambiguity. If the negative outweighs the positive that’s a horse of another color, and may be a sign of something more sinister.
We have no guarantees in this life and real love is one of the few oases we have for fabulous feelings, and sex is the physical wonderful expression of it. Use it wisely and be sure what you mean when you say, “No” and maybe just have it as a come closer message, that he has to ‘fight’ for.
“In lovers’ quarrels, the party that loves most is always most willing to acknowledge the greater fault.” - Sir Walter Scott
“Could there be anything worse”, an ailing friend once wrote compellingly to Mark Twain, “than having a toothache and an earache at the same time?” Mark Twain wrote back; “Rheumatism and St. Vitus’ Dance.”
We all feel our own pain and illness whether brief and curable or chronic or terminal and we handle it differently; each one of us.
The mere fact that we all know we don’t get out of here alive can be an unsettling idea to begin with.
When young and in good health most people don’t think about such matters, however with age things begin to happen.
While it is true that we all react differently and someone with a hangnail can be miserable while someone with terminal cancer is stoic; pain and suffering is universal for all of us at some point.
The best and worst of life is never planned!
So, if we are dealing with sickness while in a relationship the crucial questions are how long is the relationship and what are the dynamics?
If it is a fairly new relationship the illness, depending on its’ nature may drive the partner right out the door.
If it is a long standing one the pattern may continue, become exaggerated or in fact change drastically.
The roles that have been played will become the focus to observe.
The ‘sick’ one may be the one that has always and now really uses the sickness to get attention.
The strong one that becomes ill may fight the dependent role and get nastier and in fact act in ways that are detrimental to getting better. These are the people that nurses and doctors hate in the hospital.
The ‘know it all’ may become challenging and question everything recommended. The Internet has helped to foster this behavior. Sometimes for the better and often with lots of wrong information.
The severe diagnosis can sometimes force people to really change. I have seen, having worked in hospitals, some real SOB’s become ‘pussycats’ when handed a life threatening diagnosis.
Physical illness is different from mental illness but in many cases one feeds upon the other.
Crisis can force major change in some people.
So, in a really loving relationship what happens? If it is truly a caring intimate duo the relationship will only become deeper as it does with all emotional challenges.
If it has been rocky or a ‘dutiful’ one it will continue with that flavor.
If it has been without true emotional connection it may continue in name only or in some cases it can be the excuse to move on. Does Newt Gingrich or John Edwards come to mind?
Being there ‘in sickness’ is never easy for the patient and especially difficult for the people who care about them.
In many situations there are secrets about the diagnosis and while we never want to give up hope there are situations where responsible dialogue and planning should take place. Not everyone can do it.
In many cases people should be helped to end it. We are kinder to animals!
I have not spoken about the people who make themselves the ‘sick’ ones and may or may not be truly ill but like that role and play it to the hilt for life.
The really chronic illnesses can be handled in a variety of ways depending on the person. Some yield to it, others fight it, and some make the best of it and don’t become burdens to their loved ones.
So, when we promise to love’ in sickness’, do we really know what we may do? Probably not.
The real test is yet to come. Then, of course, what if WE are the one who needs the patience and love???
“Fifty percent or more of the people who go to doctors to be healed of their sickness are suffering from neuroses. Most of them can be helped, many of them cured. Many others would not under any circumstances dare to permit themselves to be cured. They live only by the grace of their symptoms.” - Karl Menninger
“Sometimes our light goes out but it is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light.” - Albert Schweitzer
For a therapist like myself the greatest reward is knowing that you have helped people live better fuller, satisfying lives.
This week I had a call that was as rewarding as it gets.
Over thirty-five years ago a doctor and his wife came to me for counseling. He was mid-forties and a gentleman from the word go. She was pretty and vivacious. They had three daughters.
The marriage was exhibiting problems and they were both willing to work on them. Good start.
I saw them together, took histories of their growing up, former relationships, and the marriage.
From the start I had the feeling he was the more sensitive one and the one more capable of giving and receiving love. She seemed more shallow and self-centered and materialistic. Her ideas of happiness were superficial.
I asked to see them separately and after a month or so it became clear he was becoming more aware of what his needs were and that she could not deliver emotionally.
While we therapists can guide, and present the options and have people look at and explore and test out all areas we NEVER give an opinion as to what a client should do.
Being a mature and intelligent insightful man, he decided he wanted to end the marriage.
Now that decision is one of the bravest any person makes. Especially when there are children involved. In this case the children were in their twenties, not infants.
Making a decision to end a marriage or intense relationship takes all the courage in the world.
This is true no matter what; children, money, job, moving, family, friends and so on all make it hard or easier.
However, when the pain outweighs the pleasure and you see that this may be for the rest of your life, you should listen to your heart.
It is good if you have family to discuss the issues, or a good friend can help, and a professional will be unbiased and present the options. This decision should never be done in haste or anger but only after time and thoughtful consideration. The new life may not be what you thought it would be. Caution is the word!
Once the decision is made there is a new opportunity for a relationship that will better meet your needs. There is a line in a song that says, “As long as I know how to love I will survive.”
That is ABSOLUTELY the case. Love will find you, I promise!!!
Do not waste your life or live it without passion. It takes learning and a relationship that ends is a fine teacher if you pay attention. None of us are perfect or the best partners all the time BUT we can be the best overall for the ONE we truly love and have the desire for. It’s whose feet you want next to you in that bed every night that counts in the long run.
So back to my doctor.
He met a woman a bit older than him and they married. She had been widowed for a while and had two children. While she was a bit of a plain Jane she had what he needed.
What he called to tell me was that now, at about eighty, he had a terminal illness but he did not want to leave this earth without telling me how grateful he was for my helping him decide and giving him the confidence and hope for something better. He is married thirty years and so very happy. I had met her after they married and they were truly bound together and joyful.
His illness will be dealt with in a beautiful way as a result of the intimacy that they share.
What a lovely ending, sad in some way that it is an ending, but as we both said together, not everyone is brave to do what he did and live so lovingly for all those years. I was deeply touched.
Unhappiness and stress are the killers in this life and only love really matters in the end.
“If you cry because the sun has gone out of your life, your tears will prevent you from seeing the stars.”-Rabindranath Tagore
“We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us.” - Martin Luther King Jr.
Yeh, yeh, yeh… try that when you’re in the midst of a fit and hating that person.
It doesn’t work then, and for some people it never really works.
It can feel like loss of power or control and at times the loss of pride. That’s just the way it is.
Now, of course, we are also talking about those times when you are unreasonable or sure you have the answer or are right. All of it gets mushed up together to make life miserable.
It is never fifty, fifty. Being lovable is not a full time event. There are passive aggressive people who do things that are not overt but they infuriate. We all learn what buttons to push and we are who we are.
At times it truly is one hundred percent on one or the other. In some cases there is a pattern where one person is always the one to forgive or reach out with a hug or words that move the situation along and make it better.
You can understand some things and yet not agree. For people who have to be liked all the time this whole business can be tiresome.
Sometimes you just can’t explain and get your message and its reasons across.
If you don’t ‘win’ you can feel diminished and less a person. Compromise puts you in the position of not getting your way! If you are used to that, compromise will be truly difficult.
I see this often in both men and women who have positions of authority and decision making in their professions. When they come home or out on a date they don’t automatically turn off and become sweet demure pussy cats!
This is especially hard in today’s world where there are many ‘successful’ women. The role of being vulnerable and giving in does not come easily. Men do not usually like bossy or crass women. They are not fragile or needing them. The soft coquette is not the lawyer or doctor or boss finding love easily. If the woman is the higher wage earner this also affects the way they relate to men and men to them.
Men want to protect and provide and please women they care about. Women want to nurture and induce love in men. When these traditional roles are not played out in the authentic self, there can be problems. If you are meeting deadlines, and aggressive at work you cannot be another person with a partner easily.
If you have to be cold and aloof and be competent meeting goals you cannot abandon those aspects of your nature.
Anticipation, intimacy, and abandonment of self, which great love requires, needs warmth and understanding and a shared connection.
While we always have choice, our personalities sometimes don’t recognize or want to choose what makes for a dynamic loving relationship.
Hench we have many perfunctory, pedantic, mundane connections; sometimes for decades.
Giving of oneself emotionally, intellectually, and indeed physically demands touch and caring expressed. Shared interests and values can make life pleasant but true romance requires something more.
Love finds you, you don’t find it, and then the relationship gets going.
My theory is it should be your best friend who’s sexy!!
Now you, and only you alone, know what areas you can compromise… and we all have to.
The good part about a lot of this is that sex can be the glue and healing remedy for hurt or bad feelings. It is also important to fight fairly and disagree without tearing the partner down or going over their history, or saying things like, “You always… or you never.”
Many times it becomes a will struggle and then neither one will back down. That can lead to the erosion of something that might have been good.
In “Love Story,” the phrase was “Love means you never have to say you’re sorry.” I ABSOLUTELY DISAGREE.
If you have been burned by past relationships it can also be a factor. Risking your heart is scary every time. Putting it in a safe place takes experience and trust.
None of us is perfect or always right, (except me).
One man I know said he gets up every morning and announces, loudly, “Honey I’m sorry,” and that makes his day really fine!
Sometimes it’s better not to say what you think.
“Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.” - Ernest Hemingway
“We like someone because. We love someone although.” - Henri De Montherlant
You may have seen a recent study that stated that talking after sex was perhaps more important to the relationship than the sex act itself!
Well, imagine that.
There’s that story about the brothel for women where for one hundred dollars the man will caress you. For two hundred he will kiss and fondle you. AND for three hundred he will listen to you!
So what is this new generation experiencing with jumping into bed, and THEN getting to know the person?
Maybe it works as well as anything in the past. In former generations the females, if they were ‘good’ girls, were virgins until marriage. Hence many young marriages. What were they saving it for? Did it work out? Was it any better than the relationships that go on today? All good questions.
The issue as I view it is that once sex is in the picture the relationship takes on a new perspective, especially for the female.
Does he love me, will I see him again, am I the only one, and when will he call, are all areas that come into play.
Whatever you think, the guy still has a different role and attitude than the female. Even the most assertive or aggressive female is at his ‘mercy’, like it or not. She however controls the sexual opportunity unless he uses force. It is a trade-off, of sorts.
Sex is never an emergency but it is a powerful drive, maybe the most powerful.
True some females don’t like or want sex but the majority have working hormones, and the guys have a strong drive. If not, something may be wrong.
It could be the lack of intimacy and not feeling loved, cherished, approved, appreciated or maybe a medical problem.
It boils down to whom do you want to be involved with and how to make it happen and stick.
While we usually only deeply love once or probably twice in a lifetime and life is made up of moments of happiness, sex offers a wonderful closeness and joy.
If after meeting someone and having sex with them you discover a whole bunch of stuff that you really don’t like, what to do then? Jump into bed over and over again until, maybe Prince Charming arrives?
Can you be honest and yourself? How do you resolve differences and maybe rejection? Or how do you reject someone? Again, all good questions. They should all be considered BEFORE you get into anything that may involve commitment of any sort.
You know it was Socrates that said, “The un-examined life is not worth living for a human being.” How many of us do that? Being young could help if you take a step back and look at what you are doing. It will give you a jump on life.
Now if drugs, or alcohol are involved that colors the situation.
Where is your will power? What are your values and what is your ultimate goal? Again great questions to ponder.
We all develop patterns of behavior based on many factors; how we feel about ourselves, what we know of the opposite sex, what our parents lived, and so on. If you repeat situations that do not work for you, you definitely need to EXAMINE or get a professional to help you do it.
When you get in bed never forget your parents and his parents are also there with you in a form.
Another important issue to look at is pride and it may be a good thing or a factor that prevents you from moving closer to someone. Control is another piece of this delicate puzzle. Who has it and under what circumstances?
Life will teach you what no one else can. ‘Mistakes’ can be wonderful for learning.
Loving someone includes sex and the only question is how it fits into your situation.
Great sex does not happen by magic but the magic will be there when the right person is in bed with you.
Males like freedom and females like commitment and when they finally get to the point where each is content it is fabulous!! Nature rules!!!
In breaking his engagement to Agatha von Siebold, Brahms wrote her: “I could not love thee, dear, so much if I did not love my freedom more.”
“Work is the refuge of people who have nothing better to do.” - Oscar Wilde
Today you are supposed to consider yourself fortunate if you have a job… even if you have finished college.
Well, guess what, most first jobs are, as Eloise of the Plaza would say, “Boring, boring, boring.”
If you’ re in that twenty something age group you were probably spoiled and thought you were the smartest, greatest thing around. Now the real world sets in. You don’t want to live at home with parents and the only way to afford to move is with help, a trust fund, or a job.
The first problem is that you were probably not given skills that were marketable.
We need trade schools that teach kids how to do stuff!!
So, maybe you have a menial job and that doesn’t make you feel good and you have to take a lot of crap from many sources. Not a pleasant way to spend your days or nights.
Then maybe you’re in a field you thought you would like and guess what? You don’t.
Or maybe you quickly discovered you need more education and that too takes money.
Or, maybe you are in something you enjoy but the ins and outs of a job were never really taught or explained.
The real world is not pretty, or jumping to your tune or helpful.
Now there are things to be learned: how to dress, how to talk to superiors, how to move ahead. What questions do you have and whom do you ask? What can you reveal about your true feelings about the job and whom can you trust?
What about the social aspects during or after work?
A really big problem occurs when you are reporting to someone you don’t respect, or if you are smarter. Maybe you are, but like it or not, they have the upper hand. Or maybe you are deluding yourself. They got there because someone thought they belonged there.
Most first jobs are low level and not very interesting. It’s only a start, and keep your eye on the end goal. No one walks in at the top right away.
Now this world is a mess and there is much to do to make it better. We need all the skill and talent we can find. Not everyone is creative, ready to work hard, or willing to take risks. To move on you need to be included in that list.
Since most of us are not at the pinnacle of whatever, we often have to adjust and make do at some point. But right out of the box should not be when that occurs. As a young person in a first job, get on with it and learn, learn, learn. There will be many more surprises and things you were never taught that you need to know in your life, as you grow.
If you get too emotional, angry, distraught, upset, or frustrated look for ways to adjust and look for other jobs. It is not easy today, and a lot of the world does whatever it has to, just to survive or provide for a family.
That’s just the way it is.
Find happiness in other aspects of life and follow what really turns you on and you will enjoy what you do; make a contribution to the world in your way, and you will be a success. Just follow your talents and instincts, and passion.
Putting in the time in the beginning is worth it in the end… usually.
Sometimes it takes a while for it all to jell but it will. Patience is not easy at young ages, I know, but try!
“I sometimes think of what future historians will say of us. A single sentence will suffice for modern man: he fornicated and read the papers.” - Albert Camus
“I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving…we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it… but we must not drift nor lie at anchor.” - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Today women make up almost forty percent of full-time workers in management but the median wages are only seventy-three percent of what their male counterparts earn. Only four percent of C.E.O.’s in Fortune’s top one thousand companies are women.
In the twenty-two to thirty years old in metropolitan areas, childless females earn less than males in every category with the same educational background.
Once married only twenty percent of wives earn half or more of the family income.
Once they have children women fall well below their husbands in earnings because they cut back their time or take off for periods of time.
So, what does all of this mean for those ladies who want to work and have children?
The pulls are there. The maternal instinct does not disappear and the drive to be a success using your education and talent does not evaporate.
Can you combine the two with some degree of comfort? Maybe.
It is interesting to see who has done it and how it worked out. Are there special qualities or circumstances that help?
The ability to nurture and love an infant and young child is pretty much inborn. Giving that up and leaving to pursue a career is hard. I have witnessed young children screaming, “Mommy,” as a mother went off to her job.
What they don’t see is that most of these children adapt rather quickly to a caretaker who is kind and loving, or a father, who remains with them. The screaming does not last.
That takes a lot for a mother… to walk away hearing her child scream for her.
The image stays however and the guilt that it produces is not easily overcome. But it can be put aside.
Now at the workplace there is another scenario.
This one is fraught with hazardous situations.
There is the need to be in control, perhaps have a superior position over others, requiring other skills, and the good parts of adult relationships; intellectual, challenging, rewarding, or sometimes leading to romantic entanglements.
The changes today in the role of father are dramatic. While many fathers are helpful in a variety of ways they do not do the full time job the way a mother does. Yes, they can help and women can go off to work knowing the child is in good and loving hands, but father is not a mother.
Watch a father when he is alone with a young child. The attention is not totally on that child as it usually is with the mother. His reactions to a fall or a problem are definitely different and less coddling than the mother’s. That is not to say it is a major problem, just that it is different.
Now the bottom line.
Having worked with families all of my professional life and knowing so many people socially over the years, the histories may be very different BUT most children will turn out the way they are whether or not they had a working mother. That should be reassuring to all you working mothers.
What children need is a sense of being loved, protected, and given opportunity to develop their talents, and interests, and that is doable with mothers who work.
What I especially like to emphasize is that the working mother using her education and drive comes home and sets a better example of a well- rounded worldly person who is not boring or shallow.
Now it is also true that a working mother may come home fatigued, annoyed at problems encountered at the workplace, or full of herself from accomplishments or appreciation from work, but given it all I believe she comes home a more satisfied person in the end and that means positive reaction to both her mate and children.
There are probably more unhappy, screwed up kids from intact families or non- working mother families than anywhere else!!!
“It is not what we do, but also what we do not do, for which we are accountable.” - Jean-Baptiste Moliere