life, Love and Connection, mindset, People, relationships, Women

Handling the Friend Who Shamelessly Flirts with Your Man

There’s always a friend you can never quite trust.



She’s the friend who barely waits for your back to be turned before she transforms into a sex bomb, tossing her hair and swinging her hips as she saunters across the room with your man firmly in sight. You try to quell the annoyance splitting your brain as she smiles wide enough to swallow him whole. You take a breath, reminding yourself what it means to be the “better” person — the collected, Stoic kind of person. Besides, you know that he only has eyes for you. But that isn’t always enough to tame the jealousy trickling in your veins like poison ivy, is it?

Hell, no. You’re only human, honey.

“Every girl in here has got a girlfriend they don’t trust around their man.”

Chris Rock


Jealousy is one of those emotions that instantly implies childlike negativity. We’re frequently told that it’s not healthy or “evolved” to feel the pain of jealousy, or we are instructed to stop being so sensitive and be more stoic in our approach to life. Because to not be vulnerable or acknowledge why we are experiencing a certain emotion is better than actually feeling the raw emotion of life, right?

Ha.

Stoicism may teach us to accept the present moment and be less focused on desirable pleasures and the fear of pain, but none of us are totally immune to experiencing a “negative” pang-feel every now then. Or the tantalizing sensations of sexual desire for that matter.

And who in their right mind would want to deny such wonderful pleasures, anyway?

Certainly not I.

It’s called living, experiencing, connecting and learning, and frankly, I believe that feeling a little romantic jealousy has its purpose in love. Every emotion you feel is valid, regardless of what others have to say about it or if you feel as though you’re overeating. Further, your feelings actually reveal something about you, as well as that they may indicate the depth of your feelings for someone else.

You may be feeling jealous because you are head-over-heels in love.


Jenni Skyler, who is the director of The Intimacy Institute in Colorado tells us:

“Feeling jealous at some point is totally normal because it’s a Band-Aid emotion, so to speak. Everyone experiences two core emotional fears — a fear of not being good enough or a fear of being left out. We all have at least a little degree of one of those two issues — we’re basically wired that way.”

So, we learn that jealousy is a normal emotion to experience in our relationships from time to time. Though, when faced with a trusted friend who vies for your man’s attention each time that she’s in his presence, the blow can do a double-time on your psyche.

Here’s what she looks like and how to handle it.


A Woman’s Toolbox = Feminine Sexuality

Whether she admits it not, just about every woman eventually realizes her one powerful advantage over a man is her sexuality. We learn how to work our assets to attract male attention, and we just as fast acquire the skillsets to play on a man’s sexual desire, if we want to go there. Truthfully speaking, women have been groomed to behave this way to win male attention over her sisters from the get-go.

It’s just how it is.

And this innate sense of knowledge is true for a woman irrespective of whether or not she permits herself to use her sexually-alluring feminine virtues in a persuasive manner.

According to an article published by Science of the People, “men are more attracted to a woman who engages in flirtation behavior to show she is available versus the best-looking woman in the room.”

All good. Flirting is a natural part of the mating game. It’s just that some women are more comfortable exploiting and using their sexuality to manipulate men than others, and, unfortunately, some women possess no boundaries when it comes to who’s man they are flirting with — friendships be damned.

The Flirty Friend

You can be flirty. I can be flirty. Depending on who’s doing the flirting, it can be quite fun and definitely arousing. But I most definitely have never crossed the “flirty” line with a girlfriend’s man. That has never been my style.

Personally, when it comes to flirting, I much prefer to playfully tease a man on an intellectual level rather than bat my lashes and push my boobs in his face like a brainless ditz. There is just something about a man who can use his intellect to stimulate. It’s like the ultimate foreplay to foreplay, if you know what I mean.

Hmm… back to the flirty friend.

I used to know the woman in the opening paragraph around the same time that I met my now husband. She was a shocker around men. It didn’t matter who he “belonged” to — if he was male and within her proximity, he was an open game.

Shocking, huh?

My friend had no qualms about shamelessly flirting with my husband each time she was around us. I’m talking full-ball performance here — from showing up wearing revealing clothes to the coy smiles to the accidently-on-purpose pawing all over him to the relentless playful banter.

It was draining just watching her.

Naturally, he reacted accordingly. She was a gorgeous woman and, well, it’s hard to find a hotblooded heterosexual man in this world who doesn’t respond in some fashion to the attention of an attractive lady.

It’s an ego thing.

Makes him feel connected to his “sexual-conqueror self” and all that masculinity stuff, reminding him that he’s still got what it takes to capture the interest and hook attractive women.

Enough said about that.

I’m not sure if my friend behaved like a hussy due to some kind of buried childhood scarring. You know, like “daddy” issues or fear of abandonment and whatnot. Honestly, I didn’t care. I’m not the type to pin the blame of adult behavior on childhood trauma, and especially not when it comes to matters of the heart.

We all have a past that we must work on if we’re going to get the most out of this life. And most adults know the difference between good and bad behavior within our friendships, too.

Chris Rock is a funny guy. I remembering hearing the below quote and laughing because it was so true when he said:

When a guy introduces his boy to his new girlfriend, when they walk away, his boy goes, ‘Aww man, she’s nice, I gotta get me a girl like that.’ When a woman introduces her new man to her girlfriend, after they walk away, her girlfriend goes, ‘I gotta have THAT guy.’”

It just goes to show that a woman can be downright determined when she fancies a man. Even more so when she falls in love with him. Let’s not explore that scenario right now.

Handling the Flirty Friend

At first, I tried very hard to be the “better” person in the above-mentioned situation. I didn’t want to let my friend’s extreme flirtatiousness affect me. Even though she possessed some lovely qualities — she was fun, upbeat, kind and interesting — I knew deep down that what she was doing was pretty rotten.

It doesn’t matter much you focus on the positive qualities of some people, or how far you strive to be that “better” person, at the end of the day it comes down to what you are willing to accept as a part of your life experience.

The entire situation eventually snowballed when she showed up at my doorstep eager to impart saucy titbits craftily concocted by her fascination. That was when her devious mindset had worn down its final thread — The cunning tongue, rear door insinuations and sly attempted take-downs …. the way she seemed to have no regard for my feelings.

No thanks.

So, I handled it. I cut her from my life and never looked back.

Game over.

Sometimes, the anecdote to poison ivy is having the guts to suck out the venom and walk away. Because life is too fleeting and precious to waste on the weeds.


Also published by Living Out Loud on Medium

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life, Love and Connection, relationships, Romance

16 Facts About Love That Might Surprise You

Other than what John Lennon said….


There’s no doubt about it, love is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G.

But have you ever stopped to consider why you feel the way you do?

Alright, so your one-and-only is the most incredibly sexy and creatively talented person you have ever encountered. He’s got you feeling like Zepplin’s Whole Lotta Love most daysand the others?

He drives you up batty-alley.

What is it about love, anyhow? Why do we physically fall in love, and what are some of the determining factors?

An endlessly fascinating subject.

The following are some interesting love-facts that might (or might not) surprise you.

And they are:

1. Two Hearts Really Do Beat as One

Yup —when you are in love, it’s not a myth. Apparently, when you gaze into your lover’s eyes for 3 minutes or longer, your heartbeats’ will naturally synchronize.

And you know what that means, don’t you?

Bingo — we really do connect through the heart and experience deep love via the windows of our souls.

2. Love Triggers an Empathetic Response

When two people are deeply bonded together, their empathy and compassion for each other turns into fire-on-water. As in an intense, selfless and at times, logic-defying phenomena — when your lover hurts, you hurt. When they bleed…

Well, you get the drift.

Don’t freak out if you experience this type of thing with your beloved, just means that your chemical love-bonds are doing pretty great in the connection department.

3. Eye Contact During Sex and Foreplay Arouses a Woman More Than When Your Eyes Are Closed

Please, please never underestimate the power of a lover’s romantic glare.

You do realize how hot and, erm… excited great eye contact can make a woman feel, right?

Extremely. Arousing.

4. The Longer You Hide Your Feelings for Someone the Harder You Fall for Them

Hmm…noted.

I love you.

5. Unexpected Love Lasts Far Longer

Then out of nowhere, I met you.

The magic of unexpected love is a game-changer, usually showing up in our lives to generate a storm, shake things up and initiate deep inner-transformation.

Like a gift, yeah.

Yeah.

It’s almost always the purest and passionate of love that we will experience during our lifetimes.

Which brings me to….

6. The Deeper Your Feelings are For Someone, the Harder They Are to Express

One of the hardest things in life is having words in your heart that you can’t express.

Though, sometimes there are just not enough words to justify the depth of our feelings, and our deepest admiration stands strong in pure silence.

Psychology Fact: The deeper your feelings the harder they are to express.

7. Bedrooms Will Influence Your Love Life

You know how when you enter a room and the energy of that space makes you feel a certain way? It’s the combo of scents, sounds and visuals sparking your senses and prompting your brain to interpret and react to your surroundings.

Well, the same applies for how your bedroom impacts the intimacy levels in a relationship.

Sexologist and relationship expert, Jessica O’Reilly has this to say about it:

“The way you choose to decorate your bedroom isn’t just aesthetic — the objects, scents, textures and sounds in your bedroom all subtly influence intimacy, especially if you share the space with a significant other.”

Yes, you may want to think twice about that TV sitting on your dresser or where you position your phone charger at night — they could very well be inhibiting your sex life.

8. Testosterone Plays a Powerful Role in a Man’s Love Life

Wearing cologne that simulates the odour of testosterone can enhance a woman’s love and attraction for you.

Here’s a list of male fragrances that I just Googled to get you going:

Top 10 Best Colognes to Attract Females 2020

9. Taking Someone on a First Date That Gets Their Heart Pumping Increases Their Chances of Falling in Love

Think roller coasters, fast cars or even a thriller movie.

Why?

Because it spikes their adrenaline and tricks them into believing they enjoyed spending time with you more than with any other person.

Danger is intoxicatingly giddy-exciting.

Though, keep in mind that….

10. You’ve Got About 27 Seconds to Make a Good Impression on Someone…

Andthe average person knows within 15 minutes into a date whether or not they want to see you again.

Make it count. Take a leap. Live dangerously.

11. Not arguing at all in a relationship suggests a lack of interest

People who care about one another tend to argue now and again.

Keep it fair and don’t forget to laugh at yourself and with each other.

12. Heartbreak is Real

Separation from a loved one can cause real physical pain. It is called Broken Heart Syndrome and is caused by emotional distress.

13. Breakups Are Tougher on Men

Yes, men are more likely to be emotionally affected by breakups than women, and…

14. Women Initiate More Divorces Than Men

On average, a woman suffers less post-breakup.

15. And Then She Will Change Her Hair

It’s a self-concept/letting go/I’m-in-control of my life thing.

New hair is like a new beginning; it just makes us feel better.

Speaking of hair…

16. People with More Toe Hair Are Better Lovers

Do you believe me?

Check your toes…


Originally published by Living Out Loud on Medium.

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Humor, Introverts, relationships, Uncategorized

The One Thing You Need to Know About Every Introvert

Besides not taking our need for alone time personally


The death of someone close to you can be such a redefining moment in life. Particularly for those who define themselves in terms of their relationships, as was the case for my mother. She was a wife to her husband for over thirty years and prescribed herself to that identity — everything about her life was essentially about him. For me, the co-dependent dynamics between them meant very limited time alone with her. As an introvert, the situation suited me just fine.

The thought of spending every other waking hour with either of my parents again is enough to cramp my stomach, and not because they are horrible parents. I just enjoy my life without them in my back pocket. Shoot me if that sounds harsh. I still love them to the extreme.

Things changed when my stepfather died in early 2018. Big time. His death meant that my mother had to learn to be in a world without him. It also meant that she suddenly had a lot more free time on her hands.

You know where this is going.

As well as that for the first time ever, mum had to learn how to pump her own fuel, pay her own bills and handle other aspects of finance. She has figured out how to interact with corporate people, negotiate deals and assert herself in the world. Mostly, she’s been forced to sift through her many layers and discover who she is without her husband.

We can’t run from ourselves forever, right?

Hmm…Maybe some of us can.

My mother is not into being alone. I am.

I spend hours at a time without interacting with people and I am happy doing just that. Introspection is my thing — almost to a fault.

This might sound weird to extroverted people like my mum, but I love thinking, reflecting and delving into the deepest zones of my mind. And I often lose myself in a world of my own making; analyzing, daydreaming, over-thinking situations and playing futuristic conversations and scenes in my head.

Talking to the stars even…

Ah, cerebral heaven. Is it wrong that I would rather spend my time in this reflection mode than to engage in meaningless, no-point conversations?

This is something else my mother has had to learn since she’s been on her own — she has had to learn about introverted-adult me.

This from Lifehack:

“There are several popular misconceptions surrounding introversion and extroversion. And because of this, introverts, in particular, are often misunderstood. They are often branded as shy, aloof, and even antisocial. While extroverts are described as bubbly, friendly, charismatic, and fun.”

Okay, I admit that my preference to living in my own head might sound a little aloof or unfriendly, but it’s really not. It comes down to need and sanity. I need space — lots of space. It’s the way that I process the world, my life and feelings.

Now that we spend more time together, my mother struggles to understand this about me. The fact is that I require solitary time in order to recharge, while she gets her energy from being around people.

Another fact: If I’m denied this reflection time for extended periods, I tend to get irritable and edgy. Maybe even a little grouchy.

More from Lifehack:

“In social situations, the extroverted brain is stimulated. It views social interaction as rewarding and responds as such. The thought of positive social interaction floods the brain with dopamine and drives the extrovert towards interaction as it is seeking to be rewarded.”

My mother likes to talk … a lot.To the point that it drives me crazy and then begins to deplete my energy. She likes to tell me about people — what they’re doing, where they’re going and snippets of their conversations.

Suffering, that’s what that is. I don’t want to know why so-and-so is going to Timbuktu and how the old buddy is getting the whatchamacallit. In the politest sense possible, I don’t give a fuck.

But I digress, it’s not that I don’t care about my mother and her life, I do. It’s just that I am wired differently. Like, introvert-majorly differently.

Lifehack, continued:

“The pleasure center of an introvert brain functions the same way — but with one very distinct difference. Extroverts have a more active dopamine reward network than introverts — meaning extroverts need more dopamine to feel pleasure. When dopamine floods the introvert brain, introverts do experience the feeling of excitement but it is accompanied by the feeling of being overwhelmed.”

It’s worth noting that compared to the more outgoing among us, we quieter folk are usually much less motivated and energized by “adult” rewards like money, social status and social affiliation.

We just don’t care.

It’s as if extroverts see big, juicy steaks everywhere, while to introverts, it’s mostly overcooked hamburgers. We don’t need the glitzy perks or high social status to be fulfilled — we just need what’s close to our hearts, whatever that looks like.

It gets worse. Well, from an introvert’s perspective.

My mum wants to know stuff that I know too. About people. A few days ago, she asked about a friend of mine who is planning to move farther north. He and his wife are considering an island life.

Mother took it upon herself to have a rant about this decision — farther north means cyclonic weather. Island life means …. erm …. the probability of encountering unsavory-type people.

So?

I didn’t understand why she would bother wasting brainpower on other people’s life choices; she really meant that shit. I was utterly baffled.

Then came the question:

“Which island?”

Which island? Was she serious? Does she not know me?

I responded with a shrug and the truth.

“I don’t know; my brain doesn’t retain that information, mum.”

“In other words, you don’t give a fuck?”

Ding, ding! Now we’re getting somewhere. She really said that by the way. I might just be elegantly corrupting her a smidge.

Elegantly. There’s a word. It just rolls off your tongue, does it not?

We introverts like words and small talk drives us elegantly crazy in a not-so tastefully refined way.

Deeper conversations are the place where we shine like the stars we so often ponder. Julie Lombard nails it when she says:

“The general small talk chit-chat grates on my nerves ― I don’t like it and feel awkward trying to engage in it. However, discussions on more meaningful topics truly catch my interest and I can ramble on and on or listen at length with keen interest.”

Every now and then, I find myself reminding my mother that we don’t actually always need to talk. Not in a mean way, but in a “being” way.

The greatest intimacy between two people is found in comfortable silence.

That’s my take, anyway. To just “be” and share space with the people I love. There really is something in those moments when you become attuned to and connected with someone special in silence.

Anyway, my mother is still not comfortable with silence, but she is learning to redefine her understanding of what constitutes the one thing that every introvert on earth knows deep in their soul:

Sometimes silence is golden.


Also published by Living Out Loud on Medium

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