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Who’s whispering in your ear?

Is it an angel or the devil?

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Usually, I would post a relationship related article, but today I just need to write out what is in my head. 

First of all, I am blessed with health and the health of my family and close friends.  I have a roof over my head, food and a job.

What I am struggling with is the amount of pressure and unrealistic expectations of my workplace, the seemingly never-ending loss of freedoms and the overall depressing gloom of 15+ months of COVID.  

With the understanding that everyone has been under some sort of pressure since COVID and many people have lost loved ones, it pains me to even think about my “issues”. 

That is why the struggle becomes even harder, knowing that my problems are not as important as others.

It feels as though I am not entitled to feel poorly, down or frustrated because I haven’t endured a loss of life due to COVID.

The push and pull is relentless like the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other both speaking to me at once.

The angel says “yes” you have the right to feel those negative feelings, just don’t drown in them and then the devil says “no” you don’t, stop whining, complaining and suck it up!

As I am trying to juggle these feelings and the ceaseless demands, it became apparent that there must be others who are feeling like me.

If you are, this is the part where “self-care” is supposed to be suggested.  With that, yes “self-care” is a powerful and helpful tool, but I would like to add that just acknowledging your feelings as valid will help too.  It helped me to just own my feelings and work through them instead of denying myself the right that they exist.

Be good to yourself, use self-care, vent, release and tell that devil to shut up.

Leah Kay Rossi

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No…it’s not sex

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What are the two taboo topics that should not to be discussed when dating someone new?  Religion and politics.  Why should it be considered “forbidden” to discuss these subjects during the first few dates?

Most people are very “set on”  their religious and political beliefs.  So it seems unwise not to find out what a potential partner’s beliefs are on these very important issues.   Why waste time dating someone that you are not compatible with on matters that are so polarized?  Why not find out before or during the first few dates if your ideals and values match up?

Most dating sites have both religion and politics as focused areas on their dating “profiles” so you can determine if you want to select that person to date.  While scrolling profiles you can see where someone’s beliefs lie whether it is liberal, moderate, green party, conservative, atheist, agnostic, Jewish, Christian, etc.

Many people consider religious views before even dating someone.  For example, a devout Christian might find it very difficult to be an atheist.  Religion can be a deal breaker.  Large gaps in beliefs may create conflict.   Some religions won’t even consider blending for marriage.  Wherever your beliefs lie, it is the conviction and strength behind them that will ultimately affect your outcome. 

This also applies to politics.  Some people will not consider being a relationship with someone who doesn’t share their political values or agenda.  What is the most media covered topic?  Politics.  Introduce your right-winged great-grandpa who served in WWII to your bleeding-heart-liberal-feminist best friend and watch the sparks fly!  Depending on individual beliefs and roots, politics can be a dividing line like the North and South in Gone with the Wind. 

The stigma should be removed when dating in addressing both religion and politics, as overall compatibility is the foundation to a solid and long lasting relationship, 

Discussing religion and politics at parties should still remain “off the table” topics in order to avoid offending or upsetting others with varying viewpoints.

However, your dating and relationship life is not a dinner party, so if your religious and political beliefs are unwavering, discussing these values upfront will give you the opportunity to make informed decisions for your future.

Leah Kay Rossi (copyright 2021)

Relationships and love

Power Struggles

Probably not the ones you are thinking of…

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Living with someone, whether you are married or not requires an enormous amount of patience, perseverance and flexibility.  No matter how “in love” you may be, there are bound to be topics that can create power struggles.

Here are a few examples;

Temperature – whether it is too hot or too cold

Windows open – windows closed

Lighting – too bright or not enough light

TV Shows to watch or not watch

Household chores – share of the workload being balanced

The list could go on and on.  What is touched on here appears minimal compared to more serious relationship issues.  However, when there is a constant need for one or both partners to have “things” there way, it can become a power struggle.   Some sort of compromise should be made when these situations arise or one person may feel as though the relationship is a dictatorship. 

Generally, one person is more adaptable in a relationship and will naturally make concessions.  But, if that generosity is taken for granted, resentment may set in.

A typical conflict that can create a power struggle for many couples is temperature.  Men usually run hotter than women.  To address this matter in my own relationship, when he is running hot, the ceiling fan over our bed goes on a timer, so it shuts off when the temperature drops at night.  While the fan is running, I add an additional blanket.  Another issue is lighting.  I am hyper light sensitive and need time to adjust to bright light in the morning.  The compromise is that the drapes are opened slightly until my eyes adjust, then I open the drapes up completely. 

Another compromise is the even and odd day of the week solution.  For example:  Even days of the month the windows are open and odd days the windows are closed. 

Compromise can be reached all on topics if both parts are willing to give and take.  If one person is always set in stone, the other person may need to decide whether or not to adapt, adjust without resentment, live with resentment or leave. 

There are much larger struggles that will arise in relationships like money and children.  If you can’t compromise on issues like temperature and chores, what will happen when more serious problems arise?

Take an inventory of the issues you and your partner consistently struggle with and take the time to make compromises together.  In doing so you will deepen your communication skills and create more balance in your partnership.

Leah Kay Rossi

(copyright 2021)

Relationships and love


Don’t set your partner up to fail

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Do you express clear expectations in your relationship? How do you express your expectations?

At times you or your partner may have the ever-elusive, unknown expectations. This is where you just assume your partner knows what you want without clear communication.

Making expectation assumptions can lead to a lot of misunderstandings and hurts.

You and/or your partner have to “know” the expectation before you can try to fulfill it.

Unless you are;

a.) lucky as a Leprechaun

b.) a mind reader

c.) so completely in sync with your lover you always meet all their expectations (you make me sick! Just kidding)

For Example:

He asks, “What do you want for your birthday?”

She says, “Oh, nothing really. I don’t really need anything, just save your money.”

What this unspoken expectation really means is:

Buy her something she wants, and you should already know what it is, if you had been listening to her.

Talking about what you want in a way your partner will “hear” you is key. Not by complaining or shaming them with guilt. Ask with a tone and words that are respectful and kind, the way you would want to be asked.

When an expectation has been unmet, mature communication can clear the future roads. Just like teaching or parenting, if the child doesn’t know what the expectations are, how are they supposed to meet them?

Don’t set your partner up to fail. Be mature, open and talk to your partner with positives and explain what your needs are and why. Once reasonable expectations are clear, they should be easy to meet. Don’t we all want to please the person we love the most?

Relationships and love

How do you feel?

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Ask yourself how you feel when you meet someone new.

When you meet a new person, stop and think about how you feel when you interact with them.

If you meet someone new and they make you feel negative and/or make you question yourself, your intelligence, appearance or personality that person is not for you. Move on. Don’t waste your time trying to figure out why or try to change their minds.

Someone that likes you will not make you feel bad about yourself. It shouldn’t take more than a date or two to figure out whether or not that person is worth your time.

This terrific quote sums up this thought process;

“Hurt people, hurt people and damaged people, damage people”.

Relationships and love

Why “23andMe”

Should Have a “Jerry Springer” Warning Label

I was gifted a “23andme” kit last Christmas. It sat on my desk for months because I was truly afraid of what it might turn up. Let me explain why…

My ‘sperm donor’ father (never was my dad) abandoned me at two years old. It was in my 17-year-old wisdom that I finally decided to meet this man. From this point forward my father will be referred to as SD (sperm donor).

My mother was mortified because she know what and who he was. She never bad-mouthed the man who never paid her child support or helped her in any way raise me. My mom made my upbringing look easy for her, but I now know how she struggled alone to make ends meet.

I was a scared, insecure teenager who was meeting her father for the first time. SD promptly and proudly informed me that I had three half siblings. In order as follows:

1. One half-brother, Daniel (seven years older) from a previous marriage that ended in divorce

2. Two half-sisters; from the same mother; marriage also ended in divorce

a. Anne, 13 years younger than me, and

b. Sue, 15 years younger

So, in a matter of a half hour I had gained three half siblings I never knew existed.

It was overwhelming at best. SD excitingly explained with his heavy Italian accent all about his immigrating to America from Italy in the late 50s and how he had to learn to speak English before he could get his green card.

During the first year of knowing SD, I also met my three half-siblings. My two half-sisters were so young that I felt more like their aunt.

SD and I had infrequent interactions over the years with long periods of no communication at all. After several very disturbing interactions with him and by now having children of my own, I knew I did not want SD around me, my babies, or my family, period.

What I learned from these disturbing interactions is what my mother did not share with me. SD was an alcoholic, a compulsive liar and a complete textbook narcissist.

I severed the relationship with SD at age twenty-seven. At 40, I received a distressing confession letter from a forwarded email. The confession was from SD to Daniel, Anne, Sue and me informing us we had another half-sister, Tammy. SD had not previously acknowledged Tammy’s existence. So she hired a private investigator to hunt him down along with all of her half-siblings. Now there were five of us, four baby mamas and three marriages.

Back to recent events and 23andMe. After spitting into the DNA collection tube I felt almost ill from trepidation. But, curiosity got the best of me and into the mail it went. As soon as the kit left my possession a feeling of dread overcame me. When the results arrived I didn’t open the email for two weeks.

My gut was screaming that I was going to have another half-brother or sister or two, who knew. Well, I was right. I now have another half-sister, Linda. SD did not acknowledge her existence either and her mother put her up for adoption.

So the now the “Jerry Springer” tally goes like this:

1. Half-brother Daniel (Born 1957)

2. Then myself (Born 1964)

3. Half-sister Tammy (Born 1966)

4. Half-sister Linda – (Born 1970)

5. Two half-sisters from the same mother

Half-sister – Anne (Born 1977)

Half-sister – Sue (Born 1979)

The total now is six children with SD genes, four baby Mamas and three marriages that we know of.

Ancestry is still out there waiting for me to spit. Should I or do stay with the current “Jerry Springer” family tree I have accumulated thus far? The jury is still out…

Relationships and love

Nice guy? Yeah you!

5 tips to screen out women that don’t really want YOU

Lots of women say they can’t find a nice guy. That is a lie. There are plenty of nice guys out there. The problem is there are too many women that are either; vain, materialistic, entitled, gold diggers, emotionally immature, bitter or unstable.

Good guys listen up. You need to OWN how great you are. It might go against your grain, because most good guys are humble. But please stand up with confidence and be proud you have a job, morals, ethics, standards and a promising future.

Tip #1 – Avoid talking about money, houses, cars or anything material in the beginning stages of dating. If you want to share this information, be sure you trust this person and you consider them long-term relationship material. She will know by your job/career, your appearance, shared interests and chemistry if she wants to continue to date you. She doesn’t need to know your portfolio or your retirement package. If you are pushed for financial information, run or get a pre-nup, you will need it.

Tip #2 -It is natural to want to impress your date with a nice car, but if you don’t have a fancy or new car this will weed out any woman that is all about appearances and/or materialistic. If you happen to have access to two cars, take the lessor first, this will also help the weeding-out process. This also goes for the event, location or restaurant for the first couple of dates. Keep it nice, but mid-range in price. Side note: I dated a guy because I liked him for him. I had no idea how wealthy he was until our 7th date. He picked me up in his Porsche and took me to his box seats at Petco Park. He was confident but humble and treated everyone with respect. That is what a nice guy does.

Tip #3 – Do not talk about anything heavy on dates 1-3. This includes; politics, religion, sex, past marriage(s), divorce/custody issues, crazy ex-girlfriends, childhood trauma, etc. Keep things light and positive. Ask her the questions, get her to open up about herself, her job/career, aspirations, goals, dreams, hobbies, favorite shows, movies, books, etc. If she presses for more personal information right away just state that you want to get to know her better, before getting into more serious topics. If she pushes or shares too much right away like she’s couch surfing right now, she may be trying to push your “rescue button”. Nice guys want to help people out, but please be wary of any stories of financial woes. Same goes for her sharing that her ex-boyfriend is a lying, cheating loser; she may be bitter and/or not ready for dating, a new relationship or unstable.

Tip #4 – Cell phone use and social media; if she can’t leave her cell phone alone while you are on a date (unless it is an emergency and she needs to check it for an ailing child or parent issue) there is a problem. It is rude and inconsiderate to have your phone out and/or check it while you are on a date. To make that even worse would be to check social media while on your date. Need I say more?

Tip #5 – Most important tip of all…JUST BE YOURSELF. If you are shy then that is who you are, tell her and open up when you are comfortable. If you’re a computer genius own it, obviously you are smart. If she says she loves going to the beach for long walks and you hate the beach, be honest. There is no reason to pretend to like something you don’t. This is very important for her as well. Many women will lie about their likes/interests to match up with the man they are dating. This backfires eventually. Not all couples have everything in common. If you like her, and she doesn’t like you, NEXT! If she likes you and you don’t like her, be honest and tell her right away. No one wants to be strung along. If you like each other, take it slow. What’s the rush? If she pushes for a loan, moving in, borrowing your car or needs your resources she may be using you.

P.S. Bonus Tip: Most women bond quickly after the first sexual encounter, so be prepared if you decide to have sex too soon. She’ll be writing your last name and picking a wedding dress in her head.

Relationships and love

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Leah Kay Rossi