I have referred to The Man Diet several times in various places as something I have done and recommend. After explaining it several times, I finally wrote it up and put it on my web site. The article is a bit aged now, so I’m updating it and moving it to the blog. Of course it got a little longer in the updating
I lost track of who originally linked to what, so I can't credit them properly. But thank you to whoever they all were, anyway!
Filed under "another reason I'm proud to be a homeschooler": California court rules that private school can oust lesbian students. I do understand that it's a private religious school, and that their denomination doesn't approve of homosexuality. On the other hand, the girls' parents chose to send them to that school, not the girls themselves. And demanding that everybody in the school be heterosexual makes every bit as much sense as demanding that they all be right-handed! (It also sounds like the school went WAY the hell overboard in interpreting the "evidence.")
Can I get an "Amen"?! Ending Weight Bias: The Easiest Way to Tackle Obesity in America
Not Good News: Mercury found in kids' foods - and in pretty much anything else that contains HFCS. I'm confident of my ability to kick the soda habit, but totally avoiding HFCS pretty much means avoiding all processed foods. GAH!
This is so cool! Implants Tap the Thinking Brain
No surprise to me, at least: Watch out. The Internet will cut you
Reality check: Sorry, you don't have a 200 IQ
Another no-brainer: Video Games May Hinder Relationships
A growing body of evidence shows that same-sex couples have a great deal to teach everyone else about marriage and relationships. Most studies show surprisingly few differences between committed gay couples and committed straight couples, but the differences that do emerge have shed light on the kinds of conflicts that can endanger heterosexual relationships.
The findings offer hope that some of the most vexing problems are not necessarily entrenched in deep-rooted biological differences between men and women. And that, in turn, offers hope that the problems can be solved.
One of the things the article points out is something I've definitely noticed, that how people handle resolve conflicts is far more important than how often they experience conflict.
One well-known study used mathematical modeling to decipher the interactions between committed gay couples. The results, published in two 2003 articles in The Journal of Homosexuality, showed that when same-sex couples argued, they tended to fight more fairly than heterosexual couples, making fewer verbal attacks and more of an effort to defuse the confrontation.
Controlling and hostile emotional tactics, like belligerence and domineering, were less common among gay couples.
The interview we did is up!
Chronic Pain and Sex: a Couple's Gentle Battle With Fibromyalgia
I'm pleased with it. There are very few, mostly immaterial inaccuracies.
From today’s Delancey Place newsletter:
In the terrain of the human heart, scientists tell us, at least three independent but interrelated brain systems are at play, all moving us in their own way. To untangle love’s mysteries, neuroscience distinguishes between neural networks for attachment, for caregiving, and for sex. Each is fueled by a differing set of brain chemicals and hormones, and each runs through a disparate neuronal circuit. Each adds its own chemical spice to the many varieties of love.
Attachment determines who we turn to for succor; these are the people we miss the most when they are absent. Caregiving gives us the urge to nurture the people for whom we feel most concern. When we are attached, we cling; when we are caregiving we provide. And sex is, well, sex. …
The forces of affection that bind us to each other preceded the rise of the rational brain. Love’s reasons have always been subcortical, though love’s
execution may require careful plotting. … The three major systems for lovingâ€”attachment, caregiving, and sexualityâ€”all follow their own complex rules. At a given moment any one of these three can be ascendantâ€”say, as a couple feels a warm togetherness, or when they cuddle their own baby, or while they make love. When all three of these love systems are operating, they feed romance at its richest: a relaxed, affectionate, and sensual connection where rapport blossoms. …
Neuroscientist Jaak Pansepp…finds a neural corollary between the dynamics of opiate addiction and the dependence on the people for whom we feel our strongest attachments. All positive interactions with people, he proposes, owe [at least] part of their pleasure to the opioid system, the very circuitry that links with heroin and other addictive substances. … Even animals, he finds, prefer to spend time with those in whose presence they have secreted oxytocin and natural opioids, which induce a relaxed serenityâ€”suggesting that these brain chemicals cement our family ties and friendships as well as our love relationships.
Daniel Goleman, Social Intelligence: The New Science of Human Relationships, Bantam, Â© 2006 by Daniel Goleman, pp. 18
Definitely a book that I intend to read! I found Emotional Intelligence quite good, but had somehow missed this newer book.
I strongly recommend the newsletter, which brings interesting excerpts from an incredible variety of books to your mailbox every day.
What do you think? Is it all about the opiates? Do you have, or have you had, a romance in which all three systems were go?
A few days ago I referred to the Change Your Life Challenge, but I didn't really explain much, as I was in a bit of a rush at the time. I've been so excited about it, too, that some part of me thinks that of course everybody knows what it is!
Not so, silly Cyn.
So let me back up, and explain a little more about WHY I want to do it, and why I'd think any of you would have any reason to plunk down money to do it, too.
Every morning, no matter what else my email brings, I know there'll be an uplifting message from Brook Noel. I'm honestly not a big fan of most generic affirmations or inspirational newsletters, but somehow Brook's daily Good Mornings don't annoy me. They avoid glurge, and I frequently add her quotes and affirmations to my PopUp Wisdom file.
I first "met" Brooke through her book, The Change Your Life Challenge, which I found at a local bookstore a few months ago. I learned that the book is actually based on a successful online program, looked it up, and was intrigued. It promises to teach:
- A step-by-step system for conquering clutter and keeping your home clean
- How to recreate the dinner hour and manage mealtimes
- How to make time work for you â€”instead of against you
- How to discover and live by your core values and beliefs
- How to implement the simplest â€œdietâ€ in the world
- The â€œkeyâ€ to never forgetting anything
- How to improve your relationships with the â€œ5-Minute Miracleâ€
- How to end procrastination
- How to implement a budget and manage your money
- And much more!
I was worried because of the "70 day" part, though. What business did I have signing myself up for yet another calendar-bound thing that I'd end up having trouble with?
Well, I listed to Brooke's podcast last Monday, and she happened to say that if she could go back and change anything, she would retitle the program as "A 70 STEP Life Makeover Program" and toss out the idea of tying it to the calendar. Forward motion is important, but making it fit your life is more important.
So yes, the Challenge is very much doable for anyone, including those of us who have chronic illnesses. It'll be even more so in a small group of women who understand each other's issues.
So here's my challenge: I'm going to begin the 70 Step Challenge on July 15. I've set up a private group for anyone who joins up to do it with me. You'll have all the normal (extensive!) support of the organization - there are thousands of people on her lists! - as well as a chance to build friendships within a smaller group of people in my group. We'll do some chats, set up "buddies," and use other techniques to help each other succeed. We won't get tied up in rushing through the challenge as much as in working it with a sense of balance.
Won't you join me? I'd love to get to know you better, and it's always good to have more friends and a better support network.
I'm taking the Challenge.....are you?
Take the Change Your Life Challenge:
A 70 Day Life Makeover Program for Women
If you join through this link, I'll be informed and will invite you to the private support group within 24 hours. I do hope to hear from you soon!
I have referred to The Man Diet several times as something I have done and recommend. After explaining it several times, I’ve decided to write it up here and just refer people to the article.
I call it the Man Diet, but that’s really a misnomer. It should be an SO Diet or Relationship Diet or something like that. It just doesn’t roll off the tongue quite as well, so just take it as given that I’m referring to women, men or whoever you would normally have romantic/sexual relationships with.
There was a time when I went from one relationship to the next. If I didn’t have one or more SOs, I felt incomplete. I didn’t have incredibly healthy relationships, but I was seldom alone! I derived much of my self-esteem from being in relationships with others.
Unfortunately, that led to “settling” for people who didn’t really meet the standards I thought I wanted in significant others, and often to accepting treatment that ranged from unpleasant to downright abusive.
Right now, I do not truly remember what triggered the realization that I’d never have a truly healthy relationship if I felt that I absolutely had to have a relationship with someone other than myself — that, in fact, cultivating a healthy relationship with myself, being complete in myself, was vital.
I didn’t think all that out so clearly at the beginning. I was just tired of the crap. I was tired of going from one relationship to the next and having the same crap come up over and over again. I was tired of the merry-go-round. I didn’t honestly count on having any more significant others. I just decided that I was done. I swore off men for a year.
At the beginning of that period, I felt anxious. I felt lonely. I felt more than a little desperate, because honestly, I have never been alone unless I chose to be that way. I’d spent my life using relationships to avoid having to deal with my own issues in a deep way. If I hadn’t told several friends what I was doing and asked them to help keep me honest, I don’t think I would have stuck with it.
In the next few months, I seemed to meet potential SOs every time I turned around. It was truly raining men! That was difficult. It was really tempting to just make a little exception, because hey, he was just so nice! Or so smart, or funny, or whatever. But there’s nothing like true friends to kick your butt when you need it.
To be honest, I’ve never had a problem dealing with most practical things — balancing checkbooks, basic home repairs, even simple auto maintenance. I didn’t need a man to take care of any of that. No, I looked to SOs to keep me company, to keep me occupied, to suck up lots of energy. I felt beautiful because they said I was, because they wanted to be with me.
So I found other ways to use my time and my energy. I went out with friends as friends. I developed new friendships that were much better because I wasn’t putting anything into wondering whether or not the relationship would move into other areas. If nobody else wanted to go see a particular music event, I went alone.
I finally faced up to some of the issues I was avoiding when most of my energy was going into interactions with an SO — like why did I need a man around to feel worthwhile? Why did I accept treatment that I wouldn’t want any of my friends to accept — that I had, in fact, told other people to walk away from? Why wasn’t I holding out for the kind of person I wanted? Hell, why hadn’t I simply become the person I wanted?
While I was really counting the days at first, by the end of that year I didn’t even realized it was done. I didn’t think about it until a couple of months later when a friend mentioned it. Hey, it was over! I realized that I didn’t feel an urge to run out and start anything new. I was just fine with being me, without a man.
I won’t pretend that I’m all past all of that stuff. It comes back at times, but not nearly as strongly. It’s much easier to insist on the kind of treatment I deserve from an SO, because I don’t fear being alone. I can be alone, and be happy. Not a problem.
I think spending at least a year alone as a truly independent adult is a good idea for absolutely anyone. If possible, live alone. Be solely responsible for yourself financially. Develop a healthy social life that has nothing to do with whether or not you have an SO. Do anything you’ve been putting off. Were you waiting to take a vacation until you had someone to go with? Go now. Go back to school. Change jobs. Volunteer. Learn to dance. Just do it, and enjoy it.
During that year, practice celibacy. That means not only do you not have SOs, but you don’t have “friends with benefits” or one-night stands. Just be with yourself. Honor yourself. Love yourself. Treat yourself as you would someone you truly treasure.
Tell somebody what you’re doing. Tell people you can trust to help you continue on to your goal. If someone isn’t supportive, distance yourself from that person. I don’t care if that person is an immediate family member. You need to maintain boundaries, and you don’t need anyone tearing you down. Seek out new friendships with people who are supportive.
It may take some people longer than a year to get past the “ohmigod I’m gonna get old and be ALONE!” panic. That’s fine. Take whatever time you need. I promise that you will be healthier and happier for it. The world, and all the men and women in it, will still be there when you’re ready.
So I actually heard from someone via Orkut. I can’t remember if that’s ever happened to me before or not.
Anyway, I went to check out this person’s profile, and realized mine was way out of date. Someday, I swear, I’m going to reproduce all the questions all those different places ask right here on my own site, keep that up to date, and refuse to fill out any other profiles.
Anyway, one of the fields was “From my past relationships I learnedâ€¦” I found the question more interesting that most, so I’m reproducing my answer here, expanded a bit.
from my past relationships i learned: Something different every time 🙂 A few of them:
Honesty is the only way to relate that’s worth bothering with.
Love isn’t enough.
Communication is priceless.
Relationships take lots of work from everyone, and sometimes they just aren’t sustainable.
Sex is often the canary in the relationship mine. Barring health issues that make sex impossible or unlikely, a decrease in sexual intimacy is usually due to a decrease in overall intimacy, which is Bad.
There’s no understanding crazy. Just walk away with as much of your sanity intact as possible.
Nobody deserves abuse.
Staying together is seldom “best for the kids.” In fact, I’ve yet to see a situation in which it was best for anyone.
There’s no way one (sane) person in a couple or other grouping is happy if the other is miserable.
If someone changes in a big way right after you get married, start trying to get an annulment. He isn’t the person you thought you knew.
While an adult can lie to you easily, his kids can’t. Neither can his pets. If either doesn’t behave consistently with what she says, or she doesn’t treat them the way she says she believes in raising kids or pets or whatever, she’s a liar. Leave before you get any closer.
Some things are worth the possibility of a broken heart.
“If you really loved me you’dâ€¦” means that the speaker is an abusive asshole trying to get you to do something that’s unhealthy for you.
Playing together is essential. So is working together.
People are not projects.
Knights are notorious for setting up new towers with you inside them. The only safe “rescue” is the DIY version, where you just walk out of the prison
What are yours?