With that in mind, I spoke to three women over the age of 70 to hear about the first time they fell in love, the ways love transforms over time, and their thoughts about all things romance-related today. Their wisdom has both inspired and resonated with me — all three perspectives are vastly different, and yet rich with history, emotion and nostalgia. I learned that experience in the present may be transient, but some memories are more powerful from a distance. And when revisiting the past, love is a lens that adds both color and clarity.
Finding a spouse using pornography is a top reason couples seek counsel, but it shouldn't be overreacted to or pathologized, Dr. Kort says. First of all, sex addicts only represent 3-6% of the population, so it's unlikely your man is one. Plus, because childhood experiences influence sexuality as an adult, people are very idiosyncratic about what turns them on, Dr. Kort says. "So no woman can, nor should be, everything to a man."

Trust your instincts from the very first contact with a potential boyfriend.  Did he get a little too drunk on your initial dates?  A man who can’t get through the early stages of a relationship without using alcohol may have substance abuse issues.  Is he perpetually late, always offering bogus excuses?  He doesn’t value your time so don’t expect him to suddenly be punctual when you need him to be somewhere important.  Do you get a sense he is hiding something when he finds reasons why you can never come to his place?  Key into your visceral responses when you pick up vibes that don’t sit right with you.  Don’t make the mistake so many women make, thinking that all these negative behaviors will change once he falls in love with you.  They won’t.  They may even get worse.

When I returned to India, he would send me photographs of himself. Photography had just been invented so this was quite a big deal! He later told me that he would go down to a shop and pay to get his portrait taken — it was very expensive. But oh, how I looked forward to receiving those photos. He only grew more and more attractive as time went on. I saved every photograph.


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I was born in Hong Kong. I was a surprise baby — my mother was in her 40s. I was the baby of the family. I was spoiled rotten. When I was 13, there was a woman, the second wife of a news publisher. She decided she wanted me to be her son’s wife. My parents told her that we were Christians, and that we didn’t believe in stuff like [arranged marriage]. I had never seen the boy! I was 13! So we never married.
"Girls should try to avoid pre-judging before a first date. Whether it's someone you're meeting online or it's someone your friends know, aim to drop the things you know about them and start fresh. Don't ask your friends to tell you everything they can because you can end up with a tainted view of what to expect. Half the fun of going out is getting to know someone new, so allow yourself to let that happen organically." —Oliver B.
"If the guy doesn't say something and take the check off the table to pay, it's probably fair to assume that you're going Dutch. There are different reasons that a guy might not pick up the tab (some that might not have anything to do with you), but if you're into him, avoid looking too disappointed. You don't want him to think you expected it." —Josh F.
Finding a spouse using pornography is a top reason couples seek counsel, but it shouldn't be overreacted to or pathologized, Dr. Kort says. First of all, sex addicts only represent 3-6% of the population, so it's unlikely your man is one. Plus, because childhood experiences influence sexuality as an adult, people are very idiosyncratic about what turns them on, Dr. Kort says. "So no woman can, nor should be, everything to a man."
You know that feeling you get when you know something isn’t quite right? If your date can’t answer simple questions about where he works or acts super shady, chances are something weird is going on. “Listen to what your gut is telling you,” says Mills. And that goes for behaviors too. If he’s already getting on your nerves and it’s only the first date that’s another indicator that you’re just not going to work.
So what's a woman to do? First, understand that your guy's hasty retreat post-sex may be because he doesn't understand how much he craves a connection with you. Then, it's time for another kitchen table sex talk, Mintz says. "If he's been jumping in the shower right after sex for the last 10 years, he's going to be really taken off guard if, the next time he goes into the shower, you all of a sudden say it upsets you," she explains. "Instead, set aside a time to talk when the situation has passed."
The period after a breakup is the perfect time for a little post-relationship debriefing with trusted friends. It's also a great time for some self-reflection about what you're looking for in a new relationship. This self-reflection often includes reading up on love and relationships to make sure you are wiser and better equipped for relationship success.
Change it up. If you continue to respond in the way that's brought you pain and unhappiness in the past, you can't expect a different result this time. Just one little shift can make a big difference. If you usually jump right in to defend yourself before your partner is finished speaking, hold off for a few moments. You'll be surprised at how such a small shift in tempo can change the whole tone of an argument.

So what's a woman to do? First, understand that your guy's hasty retreat post-sex may be because he doesn't understand how much he craves a connection with you. Then, it's time for another kitchen table sex talk, Mintz says. "If he's been jumping in the shower right after sex for the last 10 years, he's going to be really taken off guard if, the next time he goes into the shower, you all of a sudden say it upsets you," she explains. "Instead, set aside a time to talk when the situation has passed."
When I was in college at the University of Michigan, I fell in love with two people at the same time. They were both very different. Mel was an intellectual who was doing theater. He had the potential to be great. Richard was a hippie who drank tea and meditated. I had no idea why I was in love with him except I guess I just was. I had a choice to make, and I went with Mel — the intellectual.
Whether it is an impulsive move, a perceived last-chance leap or a slide into the inevitable, their advice is to stop, look, and listen — to yourself and others. Question the decision, then question it again. Some strong testimony for the need to wait and choose carefully came from women who experienced failed marriages (sometimes getting it right in a second union). They typically attributed the failure to entering marriage on impulse and not gaining a deep knowledge of their partner before marrying. As 81-year-old Marie said bluntly, “it is better to not marry than to marry the wrong person. Both my husband and I were married once before, and it took that experience to learn this lesson."
Talking during sex stimulates more than our ears, as Mintz says heavy breathing, groaning, and moaning are all sounds that we make when we're feeling free, and studies have shown that it's erotic for all parties involved to hear. It's also a great way to really express what you want, which is a huge turn-on for men when they know they're doing exactly what you need to have an orgasm.

"Like many people, I grew up believing that marriage required self-sacrifice. Lots of it. My wife, Linda, helped me see that I didn’t have to become a martyr and sacrifice my own happiness in order to make our marriage work. She showed me that my responsibility in creating a fulfilling and joyful life for myself was as important as anything else that I could do for her or the kids. Over the years, it’s become increasingly clear to me that my responsibility to provide for my own well-being is as important as my responsibility to others. This is easier said than done, but it is perhaps the single most important thing we can do to ensure that our relationship will be mutually satisfying."


Write down an actual list of what you need out of a relationship and whether those needs are being met. Rowena, 69, found the list helped her. "When I met Graham and decided to get involved with him, I sat down with a piece of paper and I wrote pros and cons. I was in my 30s at that point, and I said 'Hmm, you know, this is what I want.' And this guy had those qualities — many more good ones than bad ones.
What a stressful article! I mean, “Look sexy, get kinky, be aggressive, give him space, take care of yourself, don’t be a drama queen, don’t try so hard…” Blah blah blah!!! Be you. Be as crazy and assertive and talkative and love yourself the way you are. Don’t break your back trying to look how you think he wants you to look, or force yourself into an uncomfortable sexual encounter because you don’t want him to get bored and wonder off… Men need to be held accountable too! And if you are doing everything to make him stay, you’re only going to resent him for not putting in as much effort. And he won’t. Because he’s a dude. So just be you and find someone you don’t feel the need to CHANGE or CHANGE FOR.
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