“The first rule of relationships is communication!” books and gurus tell us, but few people really show us how to discuss these things, or what to do when efforts to do so, however well-intended, only serve to trigger a partner’s fear. It doesn’t even matter if it’s a rational fear or not, fear is fear, and fear closes previously open channels.

There is a saying that is never too far from my mind whenever I begin planning a sexy surprise: The road to hell is paved with good intentions. This saying was perfectly illustrated one day when I decided to surprise the guy I was dating with a little late night dessert. Oh, you ask, what could possibly go wrong?

You were into it. You like being told what to do, being restrained and made to beg. You didn’t mind the gag or the ropes. You didn’t even mind the duct tape even though it was a little tight. At least, you didn’t mind it until it was time to go back home and you noticed duct tape doesn’t just pull off.

Pornography isn’t the problem, it’s a conduit. Through pornography, you are faced with desires with which one may not be comfortable, hence the response when the men in the article encounter women who enjoy these things and express them with them.

“Remember the story of the princess and the frog?” asks psychotherapist Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D. “We can all turn into something charming when we let ourselves be loved.” His piece on Psychology Today’s Emotional Fitness blog is worth noting for all of you starting anew this year: There is a psychological myth going around that you…continue reading.

As someone who writes about sex and relationships (despite the fact that most people who read my column can generally come to the correct conclusion that I know very little about the latter) I am asked about how to deal with the private use of pornography by men quite frequently. I’m going to be honest…continue reading.

Relationships are hard work, they say. They’re totally lying. Hard work is being chairman of the Federal Reserve when the economy is collapsing. Relationships are more like being an over-worked, unpaid slave, building the pyramids at Giza. Yeah, I know. I’m just a little ray of sunshine. But don’t worry! Psychology Today‘s Dr. Mark Goulston…continue reading.

My friend has been talking about this girl for months. After a while of being unable to express any emotion for anyone, it seems he’s finally found his heart. The problem? I know this girl. She’s a well-known man-eater. She went out with another friend of mine for a while, totally used him, and left…continue reading.