“Sex is something you do, sexuality is something you are.” ~ Anna Freud.  Stephen Snyder, M.D., author of LOVE WORTH MAKING – HOW TO HAVE RIDICULOUSLY GREAT SEX IN A LONG-LASTING RELATIONSHIP(www.LoveWorthMaking.com), helps us move beyond the compartmentalizing of our sexual selves. The focus of the program was on his Chapter 5 “The Art of the Easy” and Chapter 6 “Two Roads to Orgasm.” The discussion reveals some deep, important ideas…Dr. Snyder is brilliant! He summarizes with this --  three things are essential for good sex:  Mindfulness, sex is all about paying attention.  It’s all about the present moment.  And it’s all aboutbeing without judgment (that is, acceptance). This show really will help you enjoy love worth making!

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Romantic relationships evolve at life’s different stages. Bard Coates is a divorce lawyer who authored “Divorce with Decency” now in its 5th Edition. www.CoatesandFrey.com.  Brad and Dr. Diana discussed the Millennials (born 1980-1995) and how many are embracing the “new monogamy.” A growing number of couples are reconsidering the terms of their commitment – sometimes it’s referred to as negotiated monogamy. “Monogamish” is the term coined by Dan Savage a popular sex columnist. When I work with couples considering opening their marriage, I get both partners to come clean about what they feel emotionally capable of handling. Brad talks about Millennials “hooking up”… allowing for physical pleasure while avoiding emotional risks. We also discussed pornography. When the man (95% of the time it is the man)) views porn in secret, it is often linked to relationship dissatisfaction. Acceptance of  porn by both partners may help their relationship in terms of their expectations and their communication. The “Paradox of Choice” prevails for many – having too many choices – including in the on-line dating world. Moving up to Boomers (born 1946-1964), Brad spoke about the frequency of “Gray Divorces. The 50 plus group has seen their rate of divorce surge 50% in the past 20 years. Brad will return September 18th for a Part 2. Tune in!   

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Dr. Alex Avila, a bestselling author award-winning psychologist, spoke with Dr. Diana about one of his books “Guy Types – 4 Ways to Find the Love of your Life.” Dr. Avila combines social networking withMyers-Briggs Type Compatibility to suggest the four guy types: the MEANING SEEKER (NF), the KNOWLEDGE SEEKER (NT), the SECURITY SEEKER (SJ), and the EXCITEMENT SEEKER (SP).Sensing (S) or Intuitive (N)”: Sensing types are most at home in the world of “what is.” They prefer facts and observations. Intuitive types prefer the world  of “what if,” with its hunches, conjectures and infinite possibilities.  Thinking (T) or Feeling (F): Thinking types make decisions based on logic and principle.   Feeling types base their decisions on emotions and values. There is so much more. Tune in for a fascinating program!  www.GuyTypes.com

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Stephen Snyder, MD, author of “LOVE WORTH MAKING – HOW TO HAVE RIDICULOUSLY GREAT SEX IN A LONG LASTING RELATIONSHIP” was my guest for a third time. We mainly discussed two core relational concepts: ATTACHMENT and DIFFERENTIATION.  Dr. Snyder speaks of “enactment” where you unconsciously get another person to play a part in a misunderstood drama. Attachment is part of this because a genuinely adored as a child will grow up expecting people to adore them.  This is often described as secure attachment. Someone who felt unloved will often be attracted to partners who don’t love them. People who have anxious attachment style crave intimacy and closeness; but they may have a harder time telling someone what they want and they may withdraw. The avoidants are all about doing things on their own and enjoy calling the shots. They may worry that being committed to someone will mean a loss of independence. When it comes to differentiation, Dr. Snyder first talks about Dr. Murray Bowen who studied families who were “poorly differentiated.” These are families who get wrapped up in each other’s emotions – and so everyone is anxious most of the time. Then he spoke of Harriet Lerner. Her book from 1985 is a classic “The Dance of Anger” and it describes taking responsibility for your own emotional well-being in a relationship. Dr. Diana and her guest then focused on Dr. David Schnarch’s work who says great sex is not about how your body looks or how you position it. It’s about your frame of mind and emotional connection with your partner. He proclaims that you don’t work on your marriage, your marriage works on you because it may well force you to confront yourself and your own issues. There is so much more! Please listen to the podcast and check out  my guest’s websitewww.LoveWorthMaking.com   

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David Steinberg (www.DavidSteinberg.us) writes about The Myths of Monogamy in his book “This Thing We Call Sex.”  Dr. Diana and David spoke about monogamy and affairs – the latter often a fallout of monogamy. The myths include that monogamy is the natural order of things, people who act on desires will be punished, and those who adhere are morally superior. What meaning is attached if one’s partner is attracted to someone else? Often the one who is betrayed, asks, “What’s wrong with me?” Instead, an affair may reflect a form of self-discovery, a quest for a new or lost identity. When we commit to a partner, we commit to a story. Yet we can remain forever curious: What other stories could we have been a part of? Affairs may offer us a view of those other lives…Affairs may be the revenge of the deserted possibilities. We agree that if couples could bring into their marriage, their partnership, one-tenth of the boldness and the playfulness that they bring to their affair, their relationship might feel quite different. David Steinberg is articulate and wise! Please tune-in for a thought provoking program.

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Orgasms! They are the center of letting go. “The pleasure of living and the pleasure of orgasm are identical. Extreme orgasm anxiety forms the basis  of the general fear of life.” ~ Wilhelm Reich.  Sheri Winston (www.IntimateArtsCenter.com) returned to the program this week. Her book “Succulent Sex Craft” is a wealth of information! This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to improve their erotic virtuosity, whether playing solo or with a partner. Sheri says sex is the glue and the lubricant of long-term relationships – often, helping create loving kindness. Dr. Diana and Sheri spoke about getting to the orgasm. Having an orgasm starts with getting aroused – and arousal begins in the brain, specifically the limbic area of the brain where our sense of smell intersects with our emotional process, our memory store and our sexuality. Arousal is also expressed through our breathing. Partners can even synchronize their breathing and movement. We also spoke of cannabis and sex which can erase a lot of our inhibitors and keep us in the moment. It’s often about finding pleasure and enjoyment in a very stressed out world. Plus, there are health benefits! Having regular orgasms will extend your life and provide the basis for more long lasting relationships. Studies have shown that people who enjoy a regular, satisfying sex life (i.e. regular orgasms) are less stressed, less  depressed and generally more well physically, mentally and emotionally. Imagine if we grew up believing that pleasure was a normal and healthy part of maturing sexuality. The world could not stay the same!

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When Sheri Winston (www.IntimateArtsCenter.com) and Dr. Diana last spoke there was a promise to talk about how to create and then play inside a “conjoined erotic trance”: -- a state where intuitive magic happens! Sheri’s books are Succulent Sex Craft and  Women’s Anatomy of Arousal. We spoke of the brain and how sex can make you stupid! Sheri’s sexual tool craft kit includes sounds and breath, visualizing heart energy, and rocking the hips. Turning it on, turning it up involves creating intention (good for low desire). Domesticity can be dangerous! Erotic skills, including more foreplay and mindfulness, may be essential. Sheri empathized that all of erotic skills are learnable! Just as the search for an orgasm is not about the destination – but more about the journey. Sheri and Diana talked about learning the skills along the way in a more mature, wise manner. Perhaps this requires older perspectives? Tune in to hear two older and wiser women speak about sexuality and relationships!   

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Stephen Snyder, M.D., author of “LOVE WORTH MAKING – HOW TO HAVE RIDICULOUSLY GREAT SEX IN A LONG LASTING RELATIONSHIP,” joined the program for Part 2. This time he and Dr. Diana discussed his Chapter 10 “Why Women Lose Interest in Sex” and Chapter 11 “Why Men Go Missing in Bed.” For a woman a serious sex-knot is feeling that something is wrong with her and so she has sex out of obligation. Dr. Snyder observes that people need acceptance more than they  need sex. His definition of intimacy is expressed by you and me in a sentence with a feeling. Female sexuality is often contextual, and she wants her partner to ignite her desire. She doesn’t want to be forced, but she wants him to help take her outside herself. Practicing being in the moment – mindfulness – often improves female desire. As for men, they need to feel welcomed, and they are sensitive to criticism. He feels criticized, so he withdraws. Now she is even more angry, and he withdraws further. Rather than confront relationship conflict head-on, many men hold their feelings inside. For some, excessive porn use accompanied by masturbation can lead to difficulty becoming aroused “in real life.” Healthy, loving relationships are built on mutual caretaking. Helping one’s partner feel wanted and attractive is an essential part of feeling connected emotionally. Dr Snyder’s website is www.LoveWorthMaking.com.  

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Affairs often reflect unmet expectations, lack of excitement, boring sex lives, emotional detachment and feeling more like a parent than a sexual being. Brad Coates helped sort out these issues and more. In the 4th Edition of his book “Divorce with Decency,” he addresses affairs and infidelity. Is infidelity inevitable? Are men “hardwired” to cheat? Brad Coates has headed the largest divorce firm in Hawaii for nearly forty years, and Dr. Diana has seen couples for thirty-five years. Both have observations regarding affairs. Monogamy may not be the gold standard of relationships. Many therapist believe that healthy sexual desire is driven by love – despite the extremely common experience that in long-term relationships, as love depends, desire declines. Both Brad and Dr. Diana have opinions about how to cope with affairs – and how to rebuild in the aftermath. Every affair will redefine a marriage, and every marriage will determine what the legacy of the affair will be. Please listen for more informing details!

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LOVE WORTH MAKING – HOW TO HAVE RIDICULOUSLY GREAT SEX IN A LONG LASTING RELATIONSHIP” is a book written by Stephen Snyder, M.D. – and my guest. His is a book written in an easy, conversational tone that could serve as a manual for couples and for therapists who are not sex experts. Dr. Snyder points out that emotional skills and physical awareness are typically more central to good sex than sexual technique. More self-acceptance and less self-criticism often enhance the libido. Dr. Diana and Dr. Snyder enjoyed a lively discussion about these matters and more. Part 2 will be broadcast on May 1st. He will give his book to the first caller. Get ready to call-in! Dr. Synder’s website is www.LoveWorthMaking.com  

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