The Female Brain During Sex

Young sexy woman flirting and seduce at homeWithout a doubt, the physical aspect of sex feels good, and the orgasms can be phenomenal. Still, when a woman has trouble achieving an orgasm, she can feel extremely unsatisfied with her sex life, and herself. In fact, not having orgasms can cause a drop in the female libido.  In addition, if that is not bad enough, her partner might think they are doing something wrong between the sheets, preventing that fiery release. The truth of the matter, however, is that the inability to achieve an orgasm is caused by many factors. Understanding these factors, as well as how orgasms really happen, can help you and your partner to find ways to make your sex life far more satisfying.

Why Can’t I Have an Orgasm?!

There are many reasons why a woman may not be achieving an orgasm during sexual intercourse.

While sex feels good, it takes more than the act itself to get a woman in the right mood and right frame of mind for satisfaction. The body may be involved, and sexual intercourse plays a role in bringing about the orgasm. However, brain science plays an even bigger role, as it the brain is the body’s message center. The brain sends messages of pain, pleasure, and emotion throughout the body. It also controls and responds to genital stimulation. If the brain is not sending the right messages, your body is not going to respond with the perfect ending to sexual intimacy.

If you have had a child recently, between lingering pain, added stress, and sleepless nights, odds are, your brain is saying, “Not tonight, Dear.” Stress from work or life in general, body pain, chronic illness, and depression or other mental health concerns, can keep you from getting in the mood, and if you do decide you want to have sex, these factors might stand in the way of an orgasm. Furthermore, women are different from men. Men are turned on fairly easily, and they are typically ready for intimacy within moments. Women, on the other hand, need to be romanced, relaxed, and warmed-up for their desire to fill to overflowing. While foreplay is definitely an important aspect of this, a woman’s mind also needs to be prepared for intimacy by making her feel comfortable, relaxed, secure, loved, and desirable.

Neurobiology and Intimacy

Neurobiology, or brain science, teaches us how the brain works. Our brains are message centers that help us to identify and relate to our own experiences, our emotions, and awareness of ourselves and the world around us. Each person, although similar in some ways, has vastly different thoughts and experiences. This applies to sex as well, and for the woman who is experiencing any intimacy issues, the brain can be both her friend and her enemy. Learning how to cope with stress, to relax more, and to take time out to focus on romance and intimacy -without allowing other aspects of life to creep in and ruin the moment – can help women to get a handle on their concerns over a lack of orgasm, bringing newfound vigor to their sex lives.

Together But Separate – You in Relationship

Young woman - gardeningRelationships can often be complex and yet remain wonderful at the same time. Having a connection with another person is a feeling that most people long for and search for. Finding it can often mean absorbing it like a sponge. A person loves the way it feels so much that they can often get consumed by it. What happens then?

The one mistake people often make when they get into a relationship is that they forget that there are two people within the relationship. One person can often forget that they have their own hopes and dreams as well. So they walk down a path doing what their partner loves, supporting their partner to the point that they forget about themselves, in the end forgetting who they are as an individual.

Taking some time for yourself to do the things that you love to do is not a bad thing. Each person needs their own time and their own space. You both need to do the things that you love and remember that even though you have separate goals it does not mean that you cannot achieve them together.

Having personal goals within a relationship does not mean failure. In fact, maintaining those goals and going for them can actually make you a better person, which means a better partner within the relationship. Your goals can be large or small ones. It could be something as simple as you want to walk seven miles a week. That doesn’t mean your partner has to be by your side for those seven miles, although that would be a bonus. It means you have a personal goal that you want to accomplish because it will make you feel good, but most importantly it’s something that “you” want to achieve for yourself. Having personal goals enriches you as a person. Again, remember that when you are a better person for yourself then you are a better person for the relationship over all.

You never want to look back on something and wonder what if. You also don’t ever want to let go of the things that you hoped to achieve before the relationship, because then you may look back and resent the relationship on some level. Plus if your partner is constantly achieving their goals and dreams while you put yours on the back burner for them, it can often build a wall between the two of you.

Take time to remember even the smallest things like your hobbies. If you love to garden then take some time to plant the things you love and tend to your garden. Perhaps you love working in the wood shop and building things. If so, then take some time to do that. Doing the things you love can be therapeutic and actually recharge you.

The bottom line is to always remember that there are two of you in a relationship, but it’s also important to remember that a relationship is made up of two “individuals.” Each person has their own goals, passions, dreams, and desires. Remembering that will make you a better person overall. In the end, the result is a stronger relationship.

Commitment Stages

Couple playing aroundReal life relationships are not like those in fairy tales or romance novels. If that happens to be your expectation, you could be setting yourself up for some serious disappointment. Stages of relationships can be both good and bad, depending on the couple and the dynamic under which their relationship operates. One of the most important aspects of building a strong stages of relationships is in facing reality and the manner in which you approach that reality. If you have your head in the clouds and do not (or cannot) accept that relationships change and face this reality, then you are in for some major shock and your ability to adapt and maintain a healthy relationship could be inhibited.

Depending on the research you uncover and who is being asked, there are varying opinions as to the number of stages of relationships, as well as what those stages are and what they consist of. SexAndParenthood.com recognizes six stages, much like the experts whose work we believe in and promote. The exception to the rule is that our recognition is of the evolution of stages in committed relationships, not merely those who are dating or simply have a physical arrangement.

The 6 Stages of Commitment

  1. Infatuation – This stages of relationships is about romantic love, fantasies, and hope. The relationship is fairly new, you’re head-over-heels in love, and you either do not notice your partner’s faults or choose to justify or ignore them because of your deep emotional attachment and vision of the future.
  2. Adjustment – Those fantasies begin to subside and you begin to see the reality – real life, you partner’s faults, things that annoy you, etc. At this point, you begin to consider these things, adjusting to them as facts of life, learning to cope or voice your opinion on the matters.
  3. Conflict – As reality sets in, conflicts emerge. All couples inevitably have disagreements. It is how you handle these disagreements, how you react to one another, and how you learn to live in harmony despite your differences that matters most. This makes a huge difference in the future success of the relationship and the level of fighting a couple will experience.
  4. Re-Examination – During this relationship stage, reality and conflicts have come to a head, and it is time to decide which differences you can live with, if you see a future with your partner, and to decide whether to stay with your partner or cut your losses and move on. During this stage, some emotional and physical withdrawal is normal. However, it is also the stage where the risk of separation, divorce, and even an affair is at its highest. A separation can be good for some cou0ples, helping them to consider things very carefully and to develop both individually and as a couple. This is really not the time to run to divorce court or into an affair, even if these things commonly occur at this stage. If the relationship has any chance of recovery, it is important to work on development and to honor your commitment.
  5. Reconciliation – If the relationship survives re-examination, the next stage is a reignition of interest and love. Couples want to be closer and to work on reigniting that fame they had in the beginning of their relationship. At this point, they learn to live with one another’s differences and have learned how to gauge reactions, deal with conflict, and to compromise. This is the beginning of acceptance and a point where the relationship may be stronger than ever before.
  6. Acceptance – Few couples ever actually reach this stage. Full acceptance means you have successfully navigated through the other stages of relationships, are still together, have created some balance between couplehood and individuality, and while conflict still occurs, have learned how to handle conflict and to choose your battles wisely. You are not only lovers; you are a partnership, and a strong one at that.

All couples experience these stages of relationships in some form, though some to a lesser degree than others. There is no specific chronological order; however, it is difficult to justify how these relationship stages could evolve in any other order. Additionally, while some experts claim there is a specific period for each stage, this too is a questionable claim. Some couples remain infatuated for many years until certain changes occur. Couples who experienced little conflict may find themselves fighting more down the road. The bottom line is that relationships evolve, and this evolution, if handled properly, can create a stronger bond and a lasting love.

Sex and Finances

relationshipIn sex and relationships, couples and financial problems often lead to disaster. While couples may not intend to turn their relationship into a power struggle over money issues, this is exactly what can happen when money becomes the emphasis and blame is displaced or blown out of proportion. It takes two to tango – both parties contributing to the financial problems in some way, even if unintentionally – and it takes two to work together to solve the problem. Arguing and pointing fingers only turns your once peaceful tango into a frenzied chicken dance. When financial stress threatens your relationship, it is time to look at the root cause of the problem, identify solutions, and join forces to get your finances on track and keep your relationship intact. True love does not die just because you experience a cash flow problem.

Financial Stress and Sex

Brain science reveals that stress of any kind can throw cold water on your once hot and heavy sex life. Moreover, with financial stress being one of the leading causes of relationship tension and breakups, it is definitely a stressor that can curb your intimacy, despite sex having a reputation for relieving stress. After all, it is difficult to get in the mood if all you can do is to think about your financial troubles and fight with one another.

Whether it is financial struggles or some other cause, when sex and intimacy tae a nosedive in a relationship, chances are, the relationship is headed for a few roadblocks, if not some serious trouble. It is not that sex is the most fundamental aspect of a relationship, but when couples fight and sex and intimacy fall to the wayside, one partner or the other, if not both, is bound to take this as a sign that their partner is no longer interested and that the end of the relationship is near. Yet, armed with the right tools and putting forth effort to restore your relationship, gain control of your finances, and reprioritize, financial issues only need be a temporary speed bump on the road to a happy and healthy relationship rather than a sign of the end times.

Overcoming Financial Issues in Your Relationship

  • Do not play the blame game. Your partner is not the enemy – your financial problem is. Whether the issue is job loss, illness, overspending, unexpected debt, or something else, attack the financial issue as a team instead of attacking one another.
  • Stop complaining and start being proactive.
  • Seek the professional advice of a financial advisor to determine the appropriate actions to take to get your finances back on track.
  • Live within your means. Learn to budget. Prioritize needs over wants. Save up for big purchases, Avoid instant gratification. Live on a budget. Remember, those with a SPAM income cannot expect to live a caviar lifestyle, and even the caviar class has been known to go bankrupt as well.
  • Keep that spark by balancing work and your home life. Spend time together alone and with the kids. Leave work at work, or devote certain hours to work at home. But make time for your spouse and family so you can love and appreciate one another and can build a strong bond that helps you to fight adversity TOGETHER.
  • Communicate. You and your partner should communicate openly and clearly about everything, including financial issues. Create a budget together, discuss all bills and expenses, shop together, and never commit financial infidelity. If there is a major expense or purchase on your mind, discuss it first. Surprise debt, especially on top of existing debt, is a recipe for a confrontation.

Falling In Love – The Brain’s Process

Brain SciencePsychologists have demonstrated that it takes most people between 90 seconds and 4 minutes to decide whether or not they are attracted to another person. It is an almost instant feeling that is caused by a chemical reaction in your brain.

What makes us fall in love with a particular person?

Our brains are actually what entice us to fall in love. Love is one of the most exhilarating of all human emotions, and it is driven by brain chemicals and sexual hormones. Our bodies can become suddenly attracted to someone else based on how our brain responses to the person’s body language and tone of voice. Researchers have demonstrated that it has little to do with the actual content of the conversation.

Love Starts with Lust

Unfortunately, love at first sight is actually lust at first sight. The initial chemical reaction is considered to be more of lusting for each other that is driven by oestrogen and testosterone. It is the first stage our brain goes through when we are interested in someone, and it can lead to love if it is nurtured.

Lust Turns into Attraction

The next stage in love is attraction, which is also caused by a chemical reaction in your brain. Attraction can be broken down into three main neurotransmitters: norepinephrine, serotonin, and dopamine. In most cases, the feeling of falling in love triggers your stress response, which increases your blood level of norepinephrine (adrenaline). These chemicals can cause your palms to feel sweaty, your mouth to feel dry, and your heart to race.

The release of dopamine during attraction gives you an intense rush or pleasurable feeling that makes you want to spend more time together and the lack of serotonin found in love-struck couples is what makes your brain block out potential issues or problems in the relationship. The entire attraction stage in the relationship changes your natural thought process and is the reason why it takes so many people so long to realize they are in a bad relationship.

Attraction Becomes Attachment

Once you have spent so much time together and the chemical reaction caused by your initial nerves wears off, you will have already become attached to the other person. Researchers believe that there are two critical hormones that inspire this feeling of attachment: vasopressin and oxytocin.

Vasopressin and oxytocin are both powerful hormones that women and men produce when they have an orgasm. They are sometimes referred to as the cuddle hormones and they are released to strengthen the couple’s bond after having sexual intercourse. A couple’s bond will become stronger the more often they have sex. The same theory also explains why so many couples seem to fall out of love once they stop making love.

Lust, attraction, and attachment can all cloud our better judgement because we are not directly in control of how our brain will react to another human being. This brain science doesn’t mean that love isn’t real or valid. The chemical reactions shouldn’t be strong enough to keep two people together if the relationship is lacking trust, compassion, and commitment. In most cases, your brain is a good judge of character and will connect you with someone that can transform the chemical reaction into a true love for each other.

Male Insecurity Around Sex

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Most men will try to play it cool and pretend like sex is no big deal to them. They initiate first contact, take control of any intimate decision-making, and act confident while they are having sex – so most women assume that they don’t share the same insecurities.

Men are just as insecure about sex as women, although many of them will not admit it. Even if you have been married for a long time and have enjoyed sex numerous times together, a man’s insecurities can still interfere with his performance. This post will explain men’s insecurities about having sex and how women can help them feel more secure.

Physical Fitness Insecurities

Men are insecure about how they look physically, especially when they are naked. Most heterosexual men find the male body unappealing and they are unsure why women are attracted to them. If they are overweight and not able to handle the physical act of sex without excessive sweating, they become so insecure that they think the woman must find them disgusting and want to stop. Assure your man that this is not the case. Women who want to receive compliments on their appearance should give their men the same compliments. It will improve his confidence and his sexual performance.

Fear of Being Rejected

Because men are usually the ones to initiate contact, they often worry that their sexual advances will be denied. If they are rejected too often, they will become insecure about even trying to have sex. If you are not in the mood or you don’t have time to have sex, make sure to tell your man that you still want sex with him, but you will have to postpone it until later on. Let him know that you will be waiting in anticipation just as much as he will.

Worried About Their Stamina

Men want to last as long as possible. They don’t want the woman they are with to be disappointed with how brief the sex might be or their ability to control themselves from having an orgasm. Sometimes sex will only last a few minutes, especially if it has been awhile since the last time the man has had sex. Make sure to let him know that you are satisfied and try to do things that may help him last longer, like slowing down your rhythm or changing position before he reaches the point of release.

Women are hard to please and a good man will do whatever he can to please the woman he loves, which unfortunately can create insecurities, especially in the bedroom. Make sure to build your man’s confidence and assure him that you are still attracted to him and satisfied with the sex life you share. It will result in better sex for both of you.

What Not To Expect When You Are Expecting

shutterstock_125604296Having a baby, your first baby, is exciting. You will likely spend the first half of your pregnancy guessing and wondering what and who that little baby will be. Do you need to decorate in pink? Go boyish and blue? Unfortunately the only way to really tell how your nursery will look at the 40 week mark is by ultrasound. Though they are fun, most old wive’s tales for gender prediction have been proven to be nothing more than a 50% chance of accuracy.

How You’re Carrying

It is said that carrying a baby high means it is a girl, while carrying low means it is a boy. How you carry depends on a variety of things, including your physical properties and just the pregnancy in general. Most women will tell you they have carried low and had a girl.

Heartbeats

Some women use the heart rate as a predictor for gender, but doctors have already proven this wrong. Since a baby could be wiggling and moving at the time their heart rate is measured, you are going to get results that bounce all over the place anyway. The tale, however, states that a girl will have a heart rate of 140 or under, while a boy rests above 140.

Cravings

“Sugar and spice and all that’s nice…” is a common nursery phrase for little girls. So it is no wonder that the old wive’s tales state if you’re craving sweets you’re having a girl. If you’re craving salty foods – especially meats and cheeses – you are carrying a boy.

Morning Sickness

Morning sickness is not pleasant no matter how light or intense it is. Some believe that the worse your morning sickness is, the more likely it is that you are having a girl. The morning sickness, however, simply depends on your HCG levels and how well you handle them – but has nothing to do with your baby’s gender.

Sexual Positions

If you were dreaming of having a bouncing baby girl or rowdy baby boy, you might have noticed websites online discussing sexual positions that promote one gender. While these are of course fun to try out, they really do not help your odds of getting baby blue or precious pink. In fact, it is all up to your male partner’s genetics. Of course, there is no harm in giving them a shot – you never know!

Old wive’s tales may be false 50% of the time, but they are still a fun way to help take off those first-time parent jitters. Throughout your pregnancy promote a stronger bond between you and your partner. Have fun with the old wive’s tales and perhaps even set up a couple’s wager for your baby’s gender, weight and height just to add some fun into the mix. Remember that the first baby is certainly nerve wracking, but as long as you and your partner support one another, you will get through it in the end.

Consider sitting down and discussing your baby jitters with one another. Be outspoken about how you want your partner to help you through your pregnancy and especially labor. That way you’re both on the same page for when the day comes that you can welcome your little boy or sweet girl into the world.