3 Reasons Why a Romance Novel Will Help Your Relationship

Fabio made them famous. Or is it the other way around?

You know what I’m talking about: Romance Novels, no ladies I am not talking about the “Fifty Shades of Grey” although that can work wonders for your intimate life.  

Chances are you’ve seen a romance novel as you’ve strolled by your local bookstore, scrolled online, or perhaps you have one by your bedside.

Maybe they’re a guilty pleasure.  

In addition to business books, I enjoy some “rom com” from time to time but usually in the form of a movie.  I have to be in the mood to get really sappy.   

Romance novels often get a bad reputation among book lovers and the general public alike, criticized for the surreality of the situations and humorous descriptions.

Yet sometimes, a romance novel could be exactly what your relationship needs.

  • Romance novels can help couples with mismatched sexual desires get on the same page and in the same mood.

Sexual intimacy is a big part of relationships and for those couples where one, or both partners, have physical touch as a Love Language, sex can be a form of how they show that love.

It’s important to recognize and understand one another’s intimacy needs and to find ways of mutually meeting one another’s needs as well.

  1.     You can get NEW ideas for your own love life

Long term couples often lament in couples counseling about “losing the spark”. After a decade or more of marriage or being together, children, homeownership, and career aspirations (just to name a few of the stressors couples face on a daily basis), some couples just don’t make time for sex anymore.

Through romance novels, there’s hope!  I know it can sound hokey, but hey is what you are doing working?  Just saying… so why not try something new and for many of you reading this, different I am sure!

Find new ways to spice up a part of your relationship which might be feeling bland as of late.

The key here will be an open and honest discussion between both individuals about the quality and frequency of the sexual intimacy in the relationship.

Talk about the words passion, romance, and commitment.  

  • What do each of those words mean to you?  
  • How do you express it?   
  • How do you define it?  
  • What does it look like?  
  • How do you know when you or your partner are showing it?  
  • What would your romance novel read like?
  1.     It gives you a fresh, new and fun perspective

You know I’m all about fun ways couples can get the spark back in their love life, from playing simple games at red lights to having “Adventure Night”, a favorite in my relationship.

With Romance Novel Month, I encourage you to pick up a romance novel from your local bookstore and read a bit of it with your partner, even if just for a few good chuckles.

If you want to take things a step further, if you’re both willing, act out one of the scenes and see where that takes you or write your own romance novel.  You can write it together or separately where the 2 of you are the characters.  

Kind of fun, silly, sexy… whatever spice it up, enjoy!

Not in the mood to read? Check out a romantic comedy, like The Big Sick, and talk about each of the characters and what romance meant to them.

If you and your partner are looking for ways to reconnect and communicate better, around your sexual intimacy or more, I’m just a phone call or click away to help at 954.401.9011 or Katie@FamilyAndCouplesCounseling.com.

What’s a “Blended Family”?

And what to do if you are one

Are you someone who has kids and is about to get into a relationship with someone else who has kids?

Are you a person with no children who is getting married to someone with children and you are about to be a step-parent?

One question I often get asked about is how to parent when you’ve got a blended family.

If the term “blended family” makes you go hmmm…. a blended family is when one or more parent brings a child or children from a previous relationship or marriage into the current one.

For some blended family it’s just a natural extension of their current family.

For others, a blended family can be a rather bumpy road to travel.

If you’re part of the dyad leading a blended family and you haven’t quite found your groove, keep these 3 tips in mind for a bit smoother journey to a happy family life.

How You Raise Your Children vs. How Your Partner Raises Theirs

No matter what situation you find yourself in bringing your own kids into the family or suddenly becoming an overnight parent keep in mind the difference in your parenting styles, beliefs and philosophies.

Couples counseling although seen far too often as something to seek out when a couple is having problems is actually a GREAT tool (of course if done with the right therapist, one who is trained in working with couples) to learn how to communicate about some of these differences in parenting styles.

For those couples who haven’t had the opportunity to discuss differences of opinion on certain topics prior to blending their families, it can be a bit jarring the first time a major blow up occurs.

Worry not!

Growing pains can be part of the process.  If you enter the conversation about your difference coming from a position of curiosity and a desire to understand your partner that will help the conversation for sure!

Parent Your Own Children or Co-Parent?

What Are Your Roles?

I often say that relationships are a business and that figuring out who is responsible for what will make a world of difference when it comes to the happiness and health of your relationship.

Don’t we all perform a little bit better in our lives when we know what’s expected of us?

Agreeing on how responsibilities will be shared can save couples a lot of trouble in the long wrong because things won’t get left undone and no one will feel overwhelmed with all the work.

In blended families, parenting is no different.

You and your partner will need to decide whether you will parent your own children or co-parent and what your roles will look like in either situation.

And no matter what… back each other up especially in front of the kids.  I see far too many couples argue about the parenting conflicts in front of the kids.  This creates a whole other set of issues.  

If you disagree, that’s okay, do that in private, away from the kids.  

Build a Relationship

You can’t speak for your child and you can’t speak for your partner.

It’s important that each adult build and create their own special relationship with each child and don’t try to force it.

Your children, will do better with the transition if they feel respected, supported and honored. Allow them space and time to come to their own conclusion about your partner and do your best not to interfere.  

Keep the dialogue open between you and your children, allowing him/her to ask questions.  

The only time you should interfere is if you have concerns for the safety of your child while in the care or company of your partner.

Blended families are unique, and yours is not exception! Still figuring out how to make the above tips work for you and your family?

I’m just a phone call 954.401.9011 or click away at katie@familyandcouplescounseling.com to help you strengthen these skills.