Maybe it was because I didn't train to become a brain surgeon, but no one ever explained the seat of the emotional self to me in medical school. Our cadavers’ brains remained untouched. And for most of my life I’d never given much thought to what I’d heard referred to as the Limbic System. That was the part of the brain that ruled emotion, motivation, behavior and long term memory. That was all too touchy-feely. And not something I was going to get into with someone during a fifteen minute office visit.
Trust me; this wasn’t about getting laid. If that had been the case I would have swiped right on the men who featured their bare abs and wrote things like, “Just looking for fun.” or “Life is short. Eat dessert first.”
I may have been a wet blanket on his experience, but what I’ve come to learn is that we weren’t doing anything psychologically damaging. In fact, our willingness to engage in BDSM activity indicated that we were actually healthier mentally than people who won’t.
You might believe it difficult to quantify the behaviors that can make or break a partnership, but one team of researchers seems to have cracked the code for marital bliss. It’s not so much the behaviours themselves as how many. It’s called The Magic Ratio.
When we dial into the nonverbal expressions of desire, we create an intimate conversation that no one else is privy to.
Jealousy is a fraught emotion. It used to run spitfire through my veins, and there were times I could be worked up to near vomiting because of the possibility that my partner might be having feelings for another.
Having lived so long in a traditional marriage, alternative relationship styles weren't even on my radar. Even my gay friends were traditionally partnered, shacked up and mortgaged to the hilt. It wasn't until I started online dating that I came across the concept of polyamory.
When I found myself, at 49, suddenly single, I was hell bent on not looking for the Next Big Thing. I needed a break from the ‘Relationship, with a capital R’. But when that's what you're used to, when that’s what most of your friends are doing, it's easy to feel a bit uncertain of this position.
Generally, post-coital conversation runs along the lines of, “Wow, that was fantastic.” or “Mmm, we should do this more often.” But not since the referendum.
My name is Karin Jones and I'm the new Relationships Editor at ER. I'm originally from across the pond so you may find me brash and un-British at times. In my former life I practised medicine for 18 years and will use that background when discussing sexual health and wellbeing, as well as featuring new data about love and relationships. I've experienced long-term marriage, parenthood, midlife singledom, online dating, and lots of sex. But more importantly, throughout this journey, I've been talking with my partners and friends about what makes relationships thrive and forming new ideas about how to be a good a 21st century lover.