3 Signs You Need Space From Your Partner, Because Sometimes You Need A Break

One of the most satisfying parts of having a bae is that there’s always someone around to spend time with. Whether you’re in need of a Netflix and ~chill~ buddy or a date to bring to a family event, being in a relationship ensures that you have someone by your side when you need them. That said, no matter how in love you are, making time for yourself is really important too. Space is something you should never be ashamed to ask for, so if you’re recognizing the signs you need space from your partner, it might be time to have a conversation.

Recognizing these signs doesn’t necessarily mean that something’s wrong with your relationship. It could just be that you’ve been neglecting your needs as an individual, which can start to feel like a major strain on yourself, mentally and emotionally. I spoke with best-selling author and NYC dating expert Susan Winter to find out what you should be looking out for.

“It’s absolutely normal to love someone and also need your space,” Winter tells Elite Daily. “Partnership requires a lot of emotional and mental energy. Being in a relationship also means we’re aware and attentive to our mate’s feelings and needs.” Sometimes in our rush to satisfy others, we forget to take care of ourselves. If you suspect this might be happening to you, here are three signs you could use some you-time.

1. Everything your partner does annoys you.

According to Winter, if you find yourself constantly annoyed by everything your partner does, then there’s a solid chance that it’s time to take a step back. “When we push past our own self-care boundaries, everything our partner does will get on our nerves,” says Winter. It’s not that you don’t love them, but just like being over-exposed to your BFF or even your family can stress you out, there comes a time when you need to do your own thing for a sec.

2. You lash out at them.

“[If] you’re really bitchy [to your partner] no matter how hard you try to be nice,” it could be that you need some time to recalibrate and recharge your emotional battery, explains Winter.

Letting your partner know that you need some space can be tough, so instead, many of us try to keep quiet about our urges to fly solo. But keeping your feelings bottled up makes it easier to take out your frustrations on your SO, which can result in more hurt and confusion in the end.

3. Being around them makes you feel short-tempered and irritable.

“Too much togetherness is suffocating,” says Winter. “We’re going to be impatient and reactive if we haven’t had space to unwind and collect our thoughts. The correct balance of together and alone time is essential for any relationship to thrive.”

If you find yourself feeling tense around your SO for no reason, then it could be a sign that it’s time to have a conversation with your bae about your need for space. However, Winter also notes that if you aren’t communicating with your partner and are instead pulling away, there might be a bigger issue at place.

“You’ll know you’ve got a problem if you get more joy being away from your partner than with them, you find yourself making less and less time to see your mate each week, or you have to force yourself to put on a ‘happy face’ in order to appear normal,” warns Winter.

It’s important to be direct with your partner about how you’re feeling. Communication is essential to a healthy relationship, so there’s nothing wrong with making more time for yourself as long as you let your partner know, so they aren’t in the dark about your needs. A good partner will be supportive and understanding, so don’t be afraid to be honest.

 

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How To Tell If Your Girlfriend Is Cheating: 14 Signs Most Men Miss

When you meet the woman of your dreams, the last thing you are thinking about is what happens if she cheats on you.

Typically, people come together with a common goal of sharing their lives, but sometimes, for reasons people don’t always understand, one partner strays from the other.

Why is it easier to cheat than to just break up and start clean? Nobody really knows, but it is common enough that the other partner is left wondering what happened and if it’s really true.

It is common for the other partner to get a sense that something is wrong long before they know that their partner is cheating, but it’s difficult to confirm without actually coming out and asking!

Here are seven ways to tell she’s cheating on you.

1) She seems distracted.

Your once attentive girlfriend barely seems to look you in the eye these days. You find yourself repeating things to her because she’s not listening.

It’s hard for her to stay in the conversation and she is always looking over your shoulder. If she’s cheating on you, you’ll find that she has disconnected from your relationship in many ways.

According to family therapist David Klow, “if your partner’s actions start changing, then it might be a sign of infidelity.”

This is not to protect you, but to keep her from feeling guilty when she finally breaks things off with you: if she’s pushed you away already, it will be easier for her to say goodbye.

Or, if she decides she doesn’t have the guts to leave, pushing you away makes it easier for you to call things off. She’s pushing you away for a reason.

2) She’s dressing differently.

If your girlfriend suddenly cares about her appearance again after years of just bumming around in a t-shirt and jeans, lazing on the couch with her hair in a messy bun, and not putting much effort into a night out, something is definitely wrong.

Jonathan Bennett, a certified counselor and co-owner of Double Trust Dating, says that if your partner has had the same haircut for a long time but suddenly has a bold new haircut “this could indicate an effort to impress another person.”

According to Dr. Phillips in us, you may also want to have a look for a change in their grooming habits:

“If your partner comes home and jumps right into a long shower, they may be washing away any evidence of cheating.”

Sure, it might be that she is finding her confidence in herself again – or for the first time ever – but there might be a different reason for the change.

If you suspect it’s because she is seeing someone else and wants to look good for them, you may be right.

Change begets change and if she is running around on you, she might put a lot of effort into her appearance so she can be attractive to her new man.

3) She doesn’t invite you out with her friends.

One sign that your girlfriend might be cheating on you is if she is suddenly spending more time with friends, but leaving you at home.

If she isn’t inviting you out or is insisting that you stay home and watch the game, you might be right to be concerned.

According to Robert Weiss Ph.D., her friends be may be uncomfortable around you because they know what’s going on:

“The cheater’s friends often know about the infidelity right from the start, and your own friends are likely to find out long before you do. This knowledge typically causes these individuals to feel uncomfortable around you.”

She’s not giving you all the details about the get together either: not sure who will be there, not sure what time she’ll be home, not sure what the plan is.

These are all signs that she is trying to play innocent and hide her affair.

If you insist on going, she’ll get mad. It’s easier for her to keep you away from what’s really going on.

4) She has started to talk about the future in a different way.

If she used to talk about the future and use the word, “we”, but now talks about things she wants to do alone, that’s not good.

Even if she tells you that she didn’t mean to be selfish about her plans, be wary that she may just be covering her tracks.

According to clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula in Oprah Magazine, “A major commitment makes it more difficult to pull out of a relationship quickly.”

If she isn’t including you in her plans, there’s a good reason for that. Part of the trouble with suspecting that someone is cheating on you is that your partner may be very good at explaining away why things are the way they are.

If you aren’t vigilant with your relationship, it may just walk right out the door without you.

5) She pays a lot of attention to her phone.

Sure, everyone pays a lot of attention to their phones these days, but if she is choosing to scroll through social media or respond to text messages instead of talking to you, you would be right to question her motives.

According to counselor and therapist, Dr. Tracey Phillips, hiding things from you on their phone may be a sign of cheating:

“They could be trying to avoid receiving any questionable calls or texts in your presence.”

It could be that she doesn’t even realize she is doing it, but if she is having an affair, you can bet that she will get defensive and insulted by the assumption that she is doing anything other than updating her latest selfie pic.

Psychologist Weiss explains the possible scenarios in Psychology Today:

“Cheaters tend to use their phones and computers more frequently than before and to guard them as if their lives depend on it.

If your partner’s phone and laptop never required a password before, and now they do, that’s not a good sign. Your partner suddenly starts deleting texts and clearing their browser history on a daily basis, that’s not a good sign.

If your partner never relinquishes possession of their phone, even taking it into the bathroom when they shower, that’s not a good sign.

6) She’s not interested in getting physical anymore.

A roll in the sheets used to be a regular occurrence in your relationship, but lately, you feel like it’s getting more difficult to get her interested in sex. This can be a sign of infidelity.

Sex expert Robert Weiss explains why:

“Both decreased and increased levels of sexual activity in your relationship can be a sign of infidelity. Less sex occurs because your partner is focused on someone else; more sex occurs because they are trying to cover that up.”

Relationships have their ups and downs, but if you feel like she is pulling away from you and not wanting to be intimate, there’s a reason.

Body language expert Patti Wood, says:

“What you’re generally looking for is a shift from normal behavior. So, if they used to kiss you all the time and suddenly that behavior disappears it’s a shift from the baseline.”

It’s a good idea to talk to her about your concerns with physical intimacy and ask her what’s going on.

You’ll be able to tell whether or not she’s cheating on you by her response: she’ll either tell you that she’s having a hard time right now or something to that effect, or she’ll get angry that you bring it up at all and not want to talk about it.

Also, according to relationship and betrayal trauma-focused life coach, Karina Wallace you may also notice a drop in public displays of affection:

“If they do not hold your hand when they usually do or would usually invite you out but no longer do, they may be pulling away emotionally and physically.”

7) She’s too busy for you.

If she’s got a full plate and no room for you to spend any time together, but you used to spend all the time together, something is wrong.

According to relationship and betrayal trauma-focused life coach, Karina Wallace:

“They may play it off as just a preference but if you have been together a long time and this is not normal then its something to pay attention to…It alone is not saying they are cheating, but it can be a good indicator if there are a few things changing concurrently.”

She may even be too busy to talk with you properly.

People who might be cheating “tend to engage in sins of omission,” psychologist Ramani Durvasula says. “They operate on a ‘need to know’ basis, which is not healthy for a relationship.”

8) She doesn’t make time for you anymore.

What was once an intimate and fun relationship is suddenly so cold you need a sweater. If your girlfriend isn’t looking to spend time with you or asking you about your schedule, it might be because she is filling her days up with the company of others.

According to Robert Weiss Ph.D., MSW in Psychology Today:

“Flat tires, dead batteries, traffic jams, spending extra time at the gym, and similar excuses for being late or absent altogether might also signal infidelity.”

When you ask for some of her time, she may get angry and call you needy. Of course, it’s just her defenses to keep you at bay.

Also, according to Ramani Durvasula, Ph.D. in Oprah Magazine, if they stop sharing about their day or their whereabouts, something may be up:

“The most interesting aspects of their day may relate to their new flirtation…This can be more devastating than sexual infidelity as it implies the intimacy of day-to-day life is now being shared with someone new.”

While she doesn’t want to be with you, she also doesn’t want to hurt you and so that comes out all wrong and leaves the two of you feeling even further apart.

9) She won’t accept your marriage proposal.

You love her. You thought she loved you. You proposed and it was a hard no on her end. While you may be shocked by her response and certainly feeling rejected, there may be bigger reasons for that.

According to Everyday Health if a person had doubts about moving in or getting married, it could be a sign of cheating.

Maria Bustillos, author of Act Like a Gentlemen, Think Like a Woman, says someone who is not invested in the relationship, may always be looking for an exit, making them more likely to not commit.

If she’s cheating, she doesn’t see the point of getting married. Why she doesn’t just break things off with you is another issue altogether.

You may have to consider the point of carrying on in the relationship if you want to be married and she doesn’t.

And anyway, perhaps you don’t want to marry her if she’s been cheating.

According to therapist Kurt Smith in Huffington Post:

“While I disagree with the saying, ‘Once a cheater, always a cheater,’ there are always some significant mindset and behavior changes necessary to prevent this behavior from repeating…These new changes should be proven before getting married.”

10) She is talking about “her” future.

When you talk about the future, you notice that her use of the word “we” is inexplicably missing. She may laugh about it and say that she means the two of you, but people who are in love include one another in their plans.

According to Yvonne Filler, who runs The Affair Clinic in London:

“A couple we’ve been seeing for a few months explained the affair was suspected when the man kept making excuses not to discuss future plans.

“His wife found he wouldn’t commit to the big things like the loft conversion but also wouldn’t pay up front for holidays.”

In fact, it’s one of the easiest ways for you to tell that someone loves you before they say it: if they include you in their future plans.

11) You’ve caught her telling lies.

It might be hard to trust her anyway if you have already caught her telling you lies about who she is with, or where she has been.

“The human body is amazing in its capacity for discerning the truth in others,” certified coach, Shirley Arteaga says.

“There are usually signs of a cheating partner, and if you trust your gut, you will be able to learn the answer quickly.”

For whatever reason, women try to hide these mistakes instead of just owning them. Although, men do the same.

People don’t want to be exposed as liars and sometimes it’s just more comfortable to continue the ruse.

12) She doesn’t tell you where she’s going.

She’s all dolled up and ready to hit the town, but you have no idea who she is going with and she just brushes it off with a short answer like “just a few friends.”

It’s not that you need to know her every move, but it is common to ask questions and have an interest in what your girlfriend is doing.

Psychologist Paul Coleman, PsyD, says to Prevention that “someone who must ‘work late’ all of a sudden at times that go beyond a reasonable explanation may be cheating.”

If she used to tell you but now she is keeping you in the dark, she may be cheating on you.

13) She gets mad when you ask questions.

If you have gotten to the point of frustration and feel like you need to talk to her about what is going on, she’ll be angry when you start asking questions if she is cheating on you.

Caleb Backe, Health and Wellness Expert for Maple Holistics, tells us, that unexplained mood swings could be a sign of cheating.

Or, if she is even thinking about it, she’ll lash out at you and somehow make it your fault that you would even ask those questions.

According to Robert Weiss Ph.D., MSW in Psychology Today, she may be pushing the blame onto you:

“Cheaters tend to rationalize their behavior (in their own minds). One way they do this is to push the blame onto you.

“Often, their internal justifications for cheating leak out, and they behave judgmentally toward you and your relationship. If it suddenly seems like nothing you do is right, or that things that used to not bother your partner suddenly do, or as if you’re getting pushed away, that could be a strong indication of cheating.”

People who are lying and trying to hide the truth will go to great lengths to keep themselves and their integrity safe. It’s not personal. It’s about their inability to face the truth.

14) She’s on edge all the time.

Even if you are just hanging out, she seems cranky or nervous. She might be having major feelings of guilt about her actions and she will project those feelings onto and try to make you feel bad for the way you are.

According to Lillian Glass, Ph.D. in Oprah Magazine, you can tell if your partner is hiding something if “they are rocking back and forth” when they are chatting with you.

This shows a sign of nervousness.

It’s a defense mechanism that many people employ to protect themselves and the other person.

Despite cheating on you, she still cares enough to try to protect you from what is really going on.

In Conclusion

In going through the above signs, it’s important to recognize that “your significant other could display all…these signs and still not be cheating”, according to Robert Weiss Ph.D., MSW in Psychology Today.

“It might not be cheating, but there is almost certainly something that you and your significant other to talk about.”

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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30 Clever Instagram Captions To Use After A Breakup

After a breakup, only you can decide if and when you’re ready to share your newly-single status with the world. You can keep a breakup private, of course. But if you want to make it clear to everyone at once that bae will no longer be making any appearances on your feed, you can rip off the Band-Aid with a telling Instagram post. What you’ll need: a friend with portrait mode, a fire solo shot, and — most importantly — a clever breakup Instagram caption. And if you’re a little distracted at the moment, don’t worry — I’ve got a few suggestions.

The perfect post-breakup caption doesn’t necessarily have to be petty. You can complement your first single lady pic with a quote that’s empowering or wise or even funny, depending on what you’re feeling and what sort of message you want to send. If you and your boo ended on bad terms, go ahead and give them a little sass. If the split was amicable, use your caption to demonstrate there’s no bad blood. Even if you’re not totally A-OK yet, these clever captions might just make you feel a little better — and they’ll definitely show everyone else that you’re ready to move on.

TV Quotes

playb/E+/Getty Images

  • “I’m done with great love. I’m back to great lovers.” — Sex and the City
  • “I don’t need anyone. Because I can do every single thing that a person in a relationship can. Everything. Even zip up my own dress.” — 30 Rock
  • “I mean sure, I have my bad days, but then I remember what a cute smile I have.” — Friends
  • “Maybe I won’t get married, ya know? Maybe I’ll do one of those ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ things.” — The Mindy Project
  • “I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke.” — Grey’s Anatomy
  • “I am OK. I may not seem OK, and I may not be OK now, but I am, like, OK.” — Girls
  • “Revenge fantasies never work out the way you want.” — How I Met Your Mother

Movie Quotes

  • “By the way, I faked every orgasm.” — The Naked Gun
  • “I’m in love. I’m having a relationship with my pizza.” — Eat Pray Love
  • “No, I’m no one’s wife. But, oh, I love my life.” — Chicago
  • “I’m enjoying a relationship with two men simultaneously. The first called Ben, the other Jerry.” — Bridget Jones’s Diary
  • “You can go shave your back now.” — Mean Girls
  • “If he were feeling what I’m feeling then he would know how it feels.” — My Best Friend’s Wedding
  • “If you’re going to let one stupid prick ruin your life, you’re not the girl I thought you were.” — Legally Blonde
  • “The thing about being single is, you should cherish it. Because, in a week, or a lifetime, of being alone, you may only get one moment. One moment, when you’re not tied up in a relationship with anyone.” — How to Be Single

Song Lyrics

  • “Call it a curse, or just call me blessed, if you can’t handle my worst, you ain’t getting my best.” — Nicki Minaj, “Marilyn Monroe”
  • “I can’t believe that every day and every night, it’s getting better with you out of my life.” — Calvin Harris feat. Kelis, “Bounce”
  • “I know my place, and it ain’t with you.” — Kacey Musgraves, “Space Cowboy”
  • “My ex asked me, ‘Where you movin’?’ I said, ‘On to better things.'” — Drake, “10 Bands”
  • “We were a match, but not a fit. We were a dream, unrealistic.” — Katy Perry, “Miss You More”
  • “Thanks for the memories even though they weren’t so great.” — Fall Out Boy, “Thnks fr th Mmrs”
  • “Don’t you ever stress the ‘could haves.’ Baby, if it should have, it would have.” — Jordan Bratton, “Danger”
  • “I’ve been movin’ on since we said goodbye.” — Dua Lipa, “IDGAF”

Literary Quotes

  • “Like some wines, our love could neither mature nor travel.” — Graham Greene, The Comedians
  • “Failed relationships can be described as so much wasted makeup.” — Marian Keyes, Watermelon
  • “I like my relationships how I like my eggs. Over easy.” — Jarod Kintz, It Occurred to Me
  • “One day they’ll realize they lost a diamond while playing with worthless stones.” — Turcois Ominek, Masquerade
  • “I cannot compromise my respect for your love. You can keep your love, I will keep my respect.” — Amit Kalantri, Wealth of Words
  • “It was the beginning for me and the end for you.” — Nikki Rowe, Once a Girl, Now a Woman
  • “I’m proud of my heart. It’s been played, stabbed, cheated, burned, and broken… but somehow still works.” — Alcatraz Dey, The Serpentine Scrolls

It’s never easy to announce a breakup, but the right caption will show everything that you’re doing just fine — and it might even help you heal a little in the process.

 

 

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How Can Someone Fall In Love Quickly After A Breakup? Experts Explain

There’s no right or wrong way to get over a breakup. There’s no set time frame for moving on either. But if you’re someone who can’t stomach the thought of being with anyone else for a while, it can be pretty shocking to find out that your ex has happily moved on and fallen in love with someone else so soon.

Some people really can move on quickly right after a breakup. In fact, a 2007 study published in The Journal of Positive Psychology found that most people can get over heartbreak in about three months. According to Kim Egel, licensed therapist who specializes in relationships, how long and intense the relationship was are often key factors that contribute to how long it takes someone to heal. If your families are close, or if you have the same friends, it can be even more difficult to fully walk away.

“Healing time is very individual and unique to the specific relationship dynamic,” Egel says. “For example, if the relationship was unhealthy and abusive, it could be longer to sort through the kind of emotions that come with such a connection.”

It may seem obvious, but there is a difference between seeing someone new and actually being in love with them. It’s not shocking to find someone getting out there and dating other people in order to help with the moving on process. That’s what rebound relationships are all about. But it can be pretty surprising to hear someone say they’ve already fallen in love again so soon. According to experts, it’s very possible for some people.

Here are the reasons why some people can fall in love again so soon right after a breakup.

1. They Emotionally Checked Out Of The Relationship Earlier Than You Thought

Some people emotionally check out of a relationship long before they end it.

KaptureHouse/Shutterstock

It’s easier to fall in love with someone new if you weren’t that in love with your ex in the first place. “There are many relationships where one partner is more serious about it than the other,” Kate MacLean, relationship expert at Plenty of Fish, tells Bustle. “The less serious partner likely had ‘one foot out the door’ and was ready to move on.”

More often than not, people don’t just end a relationship out of nowhere. It can sometimes take weeks or months until they realize that they’ve finally had enough. People usually start checking out of the relationship once the thought of breaking up enters their mind. According to MacLean, it’s usually only a matter of time before thoughts get put into action.

2. They Have No Walls Up When It Comes To Love

When someone falls in love again so soon after a breakup, it’s easy to believe they’re just doing it as a way to fill a void. But as Shannon Battle, licensed professional counselor who specializes in relationships, tells Bustle, that’s not always true. “Love isn’t well thought out, it’s strictly guided from emotional regulation,” Battle says. “People who are more emotionally responsive to situations may use actual feelings of love to compensate for their hurt.”

Shortly after a breakup, it’s normal to want to close yourself off to love for a while. But according to Battle, some people don’t. “They have no boundaries with this emotion and they freely give it to others because they highly value intimacy and connection in relationships,” she says. When you’re truly open to giving and receiving love, it’s easy to fall in love again. Some people would rather open themselves up to a good feeling like love than feel pain.

3. They Found “The One”

Some people will fall in love shortly after a breakup if they meet "The One."

Shutterstock

“Love is very mysterious,” Egel says. “Sometimes the right person will come along at a very interesting time, and that can be right after a breakup.” When it comes to love, there are no rules. Just because someone fell in love right away, it doesn’t mean that they cheated, didn’t love their ex, or that their last relationship wasn’t meaningful to them. It just means that they happened to find their perfect match soon after a breakup.

Even if this is the case, it’s still important for that person to take time to process their feelings towards the breakup in order to get a sense of closure. That way they can move forward and start their new relationship off right.

There’s no set time for when people should be fully healed from a breakup or when they should be allowed to fall in love again. Everyone processes heartbreak in their own way, and everyone falls in love on their own time. These are just the reasons behind why some people can fall in love in love so quickly after a breakup.

 

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Breaking Up With Your Partner While Social Distancing Might Be Your Only Option

Adversity has a way of making or breaking relationships, highlighting problems, and pushing couples to their limits. Now, imagine adding the pressure of being unable to walk away from someone while your relationship is under duress, or taking the space you need to think through your conflict. If you’re considering breaking up with your partner while social distancing, isolation may have lead to the realization that you and your SO are not in it for the long-haul. And you’d rather end the relationship than spend one more second listening to each other chew, even if you’re currently stuck together.

Karla, 26, tells Bustle that social distancing took her relationship from casual to serious overnight, and it ended up being a dealbreaker. “Everything was great — we were going on day trips and playing board games and meeting each other’s friends,” she says. “Then, all of a sudden, coronavirus anxiety began, and we went from getting to know each other to date.”

After a couple days of cohabitation, I couldn’t stand him.

While self-isolating as a unit sounded like a good idea at first, Karla quickly realized she wasn’t ready for a live-in partner. Instead of enjoying their company, she felt overwhelmed and annoyed, craving privacy. “It was so much so fast,” she says, “and after a couple days of cohabitation, I couldn’t stand him.”

Eventually, she decided to call things off, and the two parted ways. “Had this not happened, we would’ve still been getting to know each other and having our distance while still enjoying each other’s company,” Karla says. “There’s a time and place for everything, and this just came far too soon for such a young relationship.”

Outside of a global pandemic, any number of drastic changes to your everyday routine has the potential to become a relationship stressor — starting a new job, moving to a new place, adjusting to a new schedule. When you’re already negotiating the chaos of an overwhelming shift in your day-to-day life, small problems can feel like big ones.

“As people #flattenthecurve, we may be forced to spend considerably more time with each other,” Danni Zhang, psychologist and managing director of New Vision Psychology, previously told Bustle. “It’s not uncommon for one person in a relationship to start thinking of getting out of said relationship.” Zhang emphasizes the importance of weighing whether you’re experiencing a dead-end or weathering temporary stress.

“Coronavirus has run the gamut of emotions in our relationship over the last couple of weeks,” Danielle, 33, tells Bustle. She and her husband of five years made it halfway through the second week of social distancing together, before they needed to establish a few quarantine rules in order to keep the peace.

The two made an agreement that, at least once a week, they’d part ways and enjoy a little alone time — relaxing in separate rooms, going for solo walks, and cooking alone for a much-needed respite. “Communicating how we are feeling without judgment has also been very important,” Danielle says. “Even though we are together, having time and space of our own is necessary, and allows that time together to be more valued.”

For couples on edge, Zhang suggests listing out the reasons why you love your partner in order to shift attention away from their habits that have got you on edge. But not all couples feel the investment is worth digging in their heels. Once they got a glimpse into their future together, they were ready to jump ship — even if that only meant moving from the bedroom to the couch.

“I’m fairly certain living together too soon was what pushed us to break up,” Karla says.

 

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How To Keep Your Breakup From Making You Literally Sick

One from a female reader!

The first time I ever smoked a cigarette was the night my fiancé broke up with me over the phone. After he told me he didn’t love me anymore and that I could keep my engagement ring, I hung up, went into the kitchen, and grabbed a cigarette from an open pack that belonged to my dad. I didn’t think twice — I just needed to burn something.

The end of that relationship was so sudden and unexpected that I didn’t know how to process it. So, I smoked cigarettes and started drinking alcohol excessively. Hanging out in bars and getting wasted had never appealed to me, but I had just turned 21, so I figured, why not? For a few brief hours every Friday and Saturday night, three or four Long Island iced teas could help me forget how devastated I felt the rest of the week.

“Breakups are painful — literally,” says Rosie Shrout, a postdoctoral researcher at Ohio State University who studies the intersection between health and romantic relationships. “Just like any other stressful experience, breakups can cause a psychological and physiological stress response, meaning our bodies produce stress hormones that wear and tear on our mental and physical health.”

Too often, we turn to behaviors that affect our physical health — such as binge drinking, smoking, using drugs, or exercising too much — to help cope with the aftermath of a relationship ending. We may view these behaviors as a way to get back at our ex, or we may turn to them because our inhibitions are lowered or our self-esteem has been damaged, Shrout says.

That was Penny’s* experience. The 31-year-old says she started drinking heavily, getting high, and hooking up with people who didn’t make her happy after she discovered her boyfriend had cheated on her. “Drinking and getting high numbed me, and sleeping around gave me validation,” she says.

Shrout says that while these types of responses are not uncommon, they’re also not great coping strategies. You might feel better in the moment, but these behaviors “don’t treat the emotional distress from the breakup and can even contribute to long-term health problems.”

Research shows that romantic relationships play a role in a person’s overall health — and not always for the better. One study found that people who said their closest relationships (including those involving an S.O.) were filled with conflict had a 34% higher risk of developing heart problems, even after adjusting for things like age and overall health. Another study found that people who were married and unhappy had higher blood pressure than those who were single. Researchers have also found that women who’ve dealt with multiple breakups have worse mental health than women who’ve managed to avoid heartache by staying single or sticking with their very first romantic partner.

But let’s be real: The chances of that happening in 2019 are pretty slim. We will all likely experience a bad breakup at some point. Knowing that, here are a few ways to stay healthy during those tough times.

Unfollow your ex.

To preserve your well-being, Joy Harden Bradford, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist in Georgia, recommends disconnecting from your former partner on social media — at least for now. “A lot of times when we’re trying to stay connected with the ex, we’re trying to answer questions that social media will not give us the full answers to,” she says. “We’re trying to see if they’re hurting as much as we’re hurting or if there’s somebody new that they’re dating.”

This can create more emotional distress than forcing yourself to let go. And, as Bradford explains, that distress can manifest in physical symptoms, such as headaches, stomachaches, random pain or tension. Thanks, but no thanks.

Stay active.

Working out might be the last thing you want to do after getting dumped, but exercise has been proven to reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety and increase self-esteem. “It doesn’t have to be full-blown Orange Theory every day,” Bradford says. Even a walk around campus or a few yoga poses while you binge on “Stranger Things” can be beneficial. The endorphins you get from exercise can help stabilize your mood — and yes, that’s true even when you’re convinced you’d rather spend the next six hours with your face in a tub of popcorn.

Get nutrition.

It’s not uncommon to lose your appetite post-breakup, especially if you’re really sad. The stress of a broken heart can unleash a swell of hormones and put your body in survival mode. As a result, the urge to eat becomes secondary — even a plate of authentic savory tacos from your favorite Mexican restaurant can look unappetizing. (The horror!) If that’s the case, Bradford recommends a smoothie or meal replacement shake. “Sometimes it can feel really hard to eat,” she says. “I typically will recommend people drink because that’s a little easier.”

Find a voice box.

Showing up to a party without your ex will likely raise questions, especially if you’ve been joined at the hip since day one. If it hurts too much to talk about the breakup, ask someone you trust to give people the heads up on why you’re riding solo. “When you are telling the story over and over again, sometimes you get stuck there,” Bradford says. “You can’t move on to the healing place if you are stuck in the reporting place.” Ask a friend to simply tell it like it is so everyone can move on: “Yes, they broke up, and no she doesn’t want to talk about it. How was your week?”

Allow yourself to feel all the feelings.

Everyone deals with painful events differently. Avoidance, however, is not an effective coping mechanism. “Those feelings don’t go away because we’re distracting ourselves,” says Bradford. “[It’s important to] really allow yourself to sit in the depth of those feelings, even though it sounds really miserable. There is no way for them to go away unless you actually allow yourself to experience them and then come to realize you can come out on the other side of this.”

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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The Four Simple Rules for Dads Getting Divorced

A single dad life coach gives his most common and useful advice for men heading into divorce involving kids. Hope all you guys had a good Fathers Day.

As the man in the divorce, you have an opportunity to lead the process with grace and empathy. You cannot control how your ex behaves, the only thing you can control is your own response to the challenges ahead.

I’m going to make this as simple as possible. It’s the conversation I have every week as I speak to dads about ready to enter in the process (voluntarily or otherwise) of divorce. Most of them are scared out of their wits. They were unprepared for the “filing.” And now they are scared and lacking an adequate support system to carry them through the coming storm.

It’s going to be hard, but you are going to make it. And here are the three top mantras for you to remember.

  1. You have to take care of yourself first. Your health and clear direction is necessary for you to lead your kids through the emotional trouble ahead for all of you
  2. Keep the fight of the divorce between the adults only. Deal with your soon-to-be-ex as civilly as you can, but never debate or degrade each other in front of the kids. Never speak poorly of your co-parent
  3. Let go of your ex completely. She no longer deserves your attention and energy
  4. Don’t go it alone, talk to others, build community, and please don’t isolate

Take Care of Yourself First

Do you know how they instruct you before takeoff on an airplane? “In the case of emergency, oxygen masks will come out of the ceiling. Put your mask on first. Then work on your kid’s masks.” Here’s why that matters. If you lose consciousness (or in the case of divorce, lose your mind) everyone will suffer. As the man in the divorce, you are going to be hit with a lot of unfair rulings and family law precedents. You may want to lawyer up and fight, or you may decide to make peace with the divorce and simply act in the best interest of yourself and your kids.

Also, as the man in the divorce, you have an opportunity to lead the process with grace and empathy. You cannot control how your ex behaves, the only thing you can control is your own response to the challenges ahead. If you can keep your kids in mind any time you are responding to some new request or modification in the divorce agreement, you can relax and make the right decision. Not being reactionary, not buying into potential drama, and simply stating what you need, and what your kids need. That’s the best past forward. Don’t buy into the drama. Don’t try to be detached and emotionless, but keep your kids at the heart of your response. Always think of the kids.

Your Health (Mentally, Physically, and Spiritually) Is Your Highest Priority

What can you do today to start taking better care of yourself? Are you sleeping okay? Are you drinking a bit too much? How is your diet and exercise? Are you getting together with others? Are you praying? What things about your life can you be grateful for today, even as things feel like chaos around you?

Here are the parts of your life you can control easily:

  1. Watch what you eat and drink
  2. Get enough sleep, make it a priority
  3. Get some exercise, anything is better than nothing, start small
  4. Talk to someone about what’s going on

Keep the Fight Contained Between the Adults

You are going to have disagreements with your ex. The idea of co-parenting sounds nice, but in practice, it takes a lot more than good intentions. There are going to be negotiations about holidays and birthdays, negotiations about school and who should stay home when one of your kids is sick. You are going to need the goodwill of your ex-spouse, and often their cooperation and coordination around home life and school life. Complaining about your ex in front of the kids is a lose-lose situation. Just don’t do it.

Work on getting your support team together. Who can you call when you really want to call and bitch at your ex-partner? Do you have a counselor or a friend who is willing to keep your struggles confidential? In all that is going on, your isolation will only make things harder. Make sure you get out of your house and get involved in some activities with others. Al-anon is a great program for emotional healing. Meetup groups can provide activities and new hobbies for your alone time. But most of all, keep the fighting between you and your ex. And when possible, let them win. If there’s no loss for you, just let them get their way. Just to reduce the conflict. If it’s not that important to you, let it go.

The Big Release of Your Ex

One of my last lessons in my divorce journey was to let all expectations about my ex-wife go. She is never going to be a cooperative co-parent with me. She may never get over being mad a me, even when the divorce was her idea. She’s not going to say “thank you” when I do something over and above the call of duty or outside of the divorce decree. She’s not going to celebrate your victories with you. She may be able to celebrate the victories of your kids with you, but more than likely, she’s going to keep most of those to herself. You’ve got to let go of all expectations. The “relationship” with her is over. There is no closure. There is nothing to get from your ex-wife.

As I began to understand my ex-wife’s inability to be cordial, I began to communicate with her only around the logistics of getting the kids where they needed to be. It’s as if they are a convenience store clerk, you go into the store to get milk, you don’t need to know about the clerk’s life troubles. In the same way, you don’t need to know everything that’s going on with your ex. As you can let go of their approval and permissive involvement in your life, you can begin to let go of them emotionally too.

It’s taken me nine years to get clear of my optimistic expectations of my co-parenting ex-wife. I still think about calling her from time to time about something regarding our kids. But I don’t. And I’m not going to call her. She gave me my kids, initially. She can’t give me anything else. As you detach from them, the hope is that your resentment and anger at them will also dissipate. That’s the hope. I’m not sure I’m ever going to be okay with the time I lost with my kids as a result of the divorce my wife initiated.

I’m still releasing, daily. You can begin releasing your ex right now, too.

Return to the basics.

Your health.

The energy and health of your kids.

Moving on to what’s next in your life.

Don’t Go It Alone

Men don’t do all that well at supporting one another when things get hard or emotional. But you can find other men, and even women, who are willing to support you just as you are. In my experience, Al-anon meetings are the best self-help programs in the world. They are in your town, and there are probably 3 or 4 meetings you could attend over the next week or so. Find a place you can go and talk about what’s going on.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Most Couples You See Are Going to Break Up

Whenever I see people together on the subway, I assume that they have always been together, and that they will always remain together. That they emerged from the ether as one, and that they will sink back into it, eventually — also as one — and that it is only I who emerged and will likely be receding back into the ether in solitude.

But then, the other day, for whatever reason, when I was pretending not to watch a cute young couple bicker intimately on the train, I thought, You know what? They’re probably going to break up. Each of them was probably dating someone else pretty recently, and they’ll probably date other people again soon.

It’s hard to guess how many breakups happen in any given year, in the world, but if roughly 40 percent of American marriages end in divorce (per 2017 CDC data) and most of us date at least five people before getting married in the first place (a conservative guess), then that’s basically infinite breakups. Infinite!

This tiny mean thought — no one is forever as happy as they seem in any given moment — felt harmless and buoyant. Heartbreak is widespread. I mean I, too, have ridden the subway holding someone’s hand, leaning on their shoulder. It’s funny how performative public transportation can be, for relationships. Honestly, it’s basically like a wedding. The difference is that it costs only a couple dollars to be a guest on the subway.

 

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10 Signs You’re Finally Getting Over A Breakup & Are No Longer In Love With Your Ex

Breakups can be brutal. But you’re past that now. Here’s how to know you’re over your ex.

The worst part of a breakup is not knowing how long it takes to get over a broken heart. At first, it feels like you’ll never figure out how to move on.

While you’ll probably always feel some type of way for your ex and the relationship that you had, slowly but surely you’ll start seeing the signs you’re finally getting over your ex.

We sympathize with those of you who were still pining over an ex (we cyberstalk our exes sometimes, too), we’re hoping this article will help you in your process of getting over a breakup. It might just be the catalyst you need to move past that toxic purgatory.

1. You don’t feel homicidal when he starts dating someone else.

In fact, you’re thrilled for both of them. Especially since you’re the one who set them up in the first place. After all, just because the two of you didn’t work out doesn’t mean he shouldn’t find happiness with someone else.

On the flip side, if he happened to know someone who might just be your soulmate, you’re sure he’d do the same for you.

2. You feel no urgent need to return his phone calls, texts, and emails.

Because he no longer holds the number one spot in your heart. And it’s not as if he’s going to see the error of his ways simply because you’re prompt.

3. You are interested in other men.

When you and your ex first broke up, you hit the bar scene in earnest with your best gal pals, but your heart just wasn’t it, no matter how many jolly rancher shots they plied you with.

But just the other day, that sexy bartender smiled at you, and you experienced a moment of zing! And yesterday evening, you brushed shoulders with Mr. Tall, Dark, and Handsome as you were picking up your kids from school, and your stomach did flip-flops. It looks like you’re ready to date again!

4. You now realize that a lot of his personality “quirks” were annoying or lame.

Like the fact that he was a compulsive liar. Or the fact that he constantly preened in front of the full-length mirror, making it really difficult for you to get dressed in the morning.

If you’re done seeing him through rose-colored glasses, you’re over him.

5. You consider your relationship a learning experience.

When you think back on the happy memories the two of you created together, you can’t help but smile. Yes, there were serious problems, but now, thank your lucky stars you know what to look out for in the future.

And that awful angst you experienced during your breakup and subsequent mourning period? It only made you stronger.

6. You no longer blame him for everything.

In the past, the bitterness you experienced due to your breakup caused you to inject spiteful comments about him into every conversation. Thank God that’s over and done with.

7. When you meet a new guy, you don’t automatically compare him to your ex.

Not only that, but you’re not even tempted to bring him up on your first date. Instead, you’re truly interested in learning more about this new guy’s life and, when asked about your own, are able to present yourself as a woman with hobbies and interests separate from those you shared with your old partner.

8. You think of yourself as single, not as someone who’s just gotten out of a relationship.

You’ve wallowed in self-pity for long enough, and are again ready to embrace the fun, adventure and boundless possibilities inherent in singledom. If you’re excited to be single, you’ve put Mr. Past where he belongs.

9. You truly feel that the relationship wasn’t meant to be.

And that you’re that much closer to finding the one you are supposed to be with.

10. You try to think of his middle name or phone number and can’t recall it.

Congratulations! The unnecessary detritus from your time together has been officially flushed from your system. Now go out and find someone who doesn’t give you chronic migraines

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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How To Find Love Again After Having Your Heart Broken

Never give up on finding love.

Unless you’re one of the lucky few, dating after a breakup makes you feel vulnerable in a way that you haven’t felt for years.

Until recently, you’ve enjoyed the stability within your previous romantic partnership. Now you’re experiencing the immense ambiguity of not knowing when, where or if you’ll meet someone worthwhile. Finding comfort in being single is first on your journey of figuring out how to find love again which, of course, is your ultimate goal.

The good news is that you’re presumably wiser than before. You’ve probably learned from your past relationship. You’ve got a fairly good idea about what worked well and what didn’t.

You’ve probably thought about what you want (and what you won’t tolerate) in your next relationship. It’s likely that you’re determined to do things differently in order to avoid repeating past mistakes.

If you’re like most people in your situation, you may wonder how you fit into the dating scene now that you’re older. You may want to know how to date more efficiently so that you’re not wasting your time in the wrong places with the wrong people.

This is what you need to know to lay the groundwork for effective, fun dating that’ll lead to a great, lasting relationship.

Here’s what to remember as you work to find love again:

1. Don’t tell yourself you’re too old for love

You’re definitely not too old to find love. You’re just older than you were last time.

Like you, single people in your age range tend to have the wisdom of experience. Men are more interested in a woman’s personality. Women are less prone to drama.

Many people are still attracted to youthful energy, passion, and optimism — which lives within all ages!

People of all ages date, fall in love and get into long-term, committed relationships. Wanting love is a primal, human desire and it doesn’t go away as you age.

2. Don’t be afraid to try online dating

Be friendly and outgoing toward everyone. Single people are everywhere, and you’re more likely to find them when you’re fostering connections and friendships.

Use technology to your advantage. Research effective ways to date online and learn how to best use those sites. Remember that no one was born knowing how to meet people via online dating sites, so just go with the flow!

3. Forgive the pains of the past

Dating behaviors have changed a great deal over the years, so forgive mistakes and misunderstandings. Some people have never dated — they met their exes through friends, work or school and got together in a less formal way.

4. Don’t mistake attraction for being a “sure thing”

Attraction is simply an opportunity to get to know someone better. It is not a sign that they’re “the one.”

5. Date more than just one person

You can’t tell how things will turn out after just one date. If you think you can, you’re telling yourself a story. Continue dating several people until you find someone who is equally excited about the prospect of forging a relationship.

Take time to get to know the person who most interests you (as well as several others) before committing to one person. Don’t waste your time by committing to someone who only sees you as one of several options.

6. Don’t let yourself get swept away in the “courtship” stages

Courtship requires different skills than growing and maintaining a relationship. Don’t assume that someone who is a great date will also be a great mate.

7. Don’t rush things

Dating isn’t efficient. It’s about getting to know people and discovering whether you care for each other and if your values, goals, and personalities are in alignment.

You can’t tell if someone is right for the long haul until you’ve known each other for an extended period of time.

8. Watch for emotional baggage

Everyone has baggage, and you’re accountable for yours. Wait until you’ve gone out several times before gradually revealing personal details about your life and relationships.

Don’t allow your date’s baggage to become your problem. You’re seeking a potential partner, not a therapy project.

9. Find someone who shares your values in a relationship

Many people date because they’re seeking a relationship, but part of dating is discovering if the person you’re seeing wants one with you.

10. If you want lasting love, don’t settle for a “player”

Some people are dating because they are seeking no-strings-attached companionship. They only want a play pal or a friend with benefits. Most will casually mention it as you’re getting acquainted.

If you continue to see them after they’ve told you they aren’t interested in a real relationship, they will assume that you are also looking for something casual.

It helps if you see your return to dating as an adventure. You don’t know who you’ll meet, but if you embrace your new situation, it’ll definitely be entertaining and, ultimately, rewarding.

 

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