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Two Can Be the Loneliest Number

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<%BLOG|Two Can Be the Loneliest Number%>

A very warm welcome from Carmen Sutra:  

I have single friends who bemoan the holidays, company parties,
and family events because of the inevitable question "do you
have a date?" The same single friends say that while they
have full lives and satisfying careers, they feel lonely
without a partner. Indeed, singledom CAN be lonely, but I
am here to discuss a different kind of loneliness. No one
talks about it, but little compares to feeling lonely while
you are IN a relationship. 

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Today's Topic: Two Can Be the Loneliest Number

Believe me, I know it can suck to be the only one without a
date on New Year's Eve or the only one in your friend group
to not be married. We've all been there. And while I'm not
blowing off that particular loneliness, at least we can 
talk to friends about it and commiserate with fellow singles.
If you are in a relationship and feel lonely, you often 
feel isolated and like you have no one to turn to. Indeed,
the person you would normally turn to is your partner, but
since you are disconnected right now, that does not feel
like an option.

Being lonely while in a relationship sounds counterintuitive.
After all, how can you be lonely if you have someone to go
home to every night? Someone to talk to and share your day?
But loneliness does not come out of the blue; it's insidious-
ness creeps up on you after a pattern of behavior (yours and
your partners). It can take months or years. 

If you are lonely in a relationship, chances are communi-
cation has broken down between the two of you. There is 
probably sarcasm being flung, some stonewalling enacted,
mixed with bits of defensiveness and criticism. Sound 
familiar? It's not pretty. These behaviors, over time, chip
away at the relationship's foundation. And if any of these
behaviors (or a combination) ARE present, then you will both
be less likely to look forward to coming home to one another,
and you won't want to share your day. Outlook not so good.

Dr. John Gottman is a highly respected marriage and family
therapist who has worked with thousands of couples. He has
written many books (I recommend "The Seven Principles for 
Making Marriage Work," among others) and hundreds of journal
articles on warning signs for a relationship's demise and
how to turn it around. He claims that once loneliness sets
in in a relationship, little can save it. That's my warning
to you, my dear Great SEXers. DO NOT LET YOUR RELATIONSHIP
GET TO THIS LEVEL! You must practice and exhibit respect,
genuine interest, and support every single day. Check in
with each other. Communicate. Listen to one another. 

If either of you senses you are headed to the lonely camp or
are already setting up a tent, consider consulting a counsel-
or. Loneliness is rooted in other issues, and while you CAN 
work things out together, I strongly encourage you to con-
sider seeing a marriage therapist. He or she will have been 
trained in marital dynamics and will have years of experience. 
He or she will be able to offer insight that you can't see 
because you are too in the middle of the issue. Many health 
insurance policies provide for some mental health coverage 
now, and there are plenty of community agencies to help at 
a reduced cost. Do what you need to do to save your relation-
ship. You do not need to be lonely. 

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On the flip side, confronting the issue might help you deter-
mine that you are better off moving on without your partner.
Either way, growth and change can be difficult, but again,
you need to take care of yourself. You should not have to 
feel isolated and lonely. We all deserve happiness, and some-
times it takes courage to pursue it. On that note, I am 
signing off for the day, but I want to ask you, my dear Great
SEXers, how are you doing? How is your relationship? You know
where to find me. Please share your stories. As always, I 

Devotedly yours,   

Carmen Sutra   

*********************WEEKLY VIDEO CLIP**********************

            George Carlin: Baseball vs. Football 

For more than four decades, George Carlin has made us laugh 
and think with his salty, provocative style of standup comedy. 
In a continuation of the clip 'Carlin on Baseball' hear a 
direct comparison of Baseball and Football by the legendary 


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