The Phones We Love Too Much - New York Times (Lesley Alderman)
"“A key to a healthy relationship is being present,” said James Roberts, author of “Too Much of a Good Thing: Are You Addicted to Your Smartphone?”. When one partner constantly checks his or her phone it sends an implicit message that they find the phone (or what’s on it) more interesting than you.
If you’re feeling frustrated by phone interference in your relationship, talk to your partner but be positive. “Emphasize the benefits of being more connected,” Ms. Bell said. Rather than dictate to your partner what they should or should not do, try an approach such as, “I love talking with you, but when you’re constantly checking your phone it’s hard to have a great conversation.”
Practice phone etiquette. If you must look at your phone, announce that you are doing so. “I am just checking the score/weather/playlist for two minutes,” shows courtesy and indicates to your partner that you are aware that your attention is shifting. It may also make you more aware of how often you pick up your phone when your partner is present."
"Question: Fictiophillia on the outside
I have been in love with another furry for two months now, however there is a problem. She is deeply in love with a fictional character, leaving no room in her heart for me. I have told her how I feel about her, but she is incapable of developing feelings for me because of her fictiophillia. It is very painful to watch, to see her deny herself of a true relationship because of a fictional one, not to mention very frustrating. Is there any hope for me? What can I possibly do? I know if she did not have this affliction we could be happy together."
"Subject: How to save my relationship!
Question / Message / Feedback: As the titel explains so am I worried that my relationship will break after soon two years. Since we doesn't have time alone anymore and is in a economical crisis at the moment so we can't go somewhere to have us time. What should I do to save this relationship? Since my boyfriend is the Only fur I know in real life that also accept me for who I am. I really can't loose him.
Hello, feral attraction. I have a question for you. I am 22 years old and became involved in the fandom roughly a year ago. Unlike so many in the fandom I am not seeking a boyfriend, rather, I am looking for a girlfriend. However, there are certain standards that I have. I would like to find a girl who is intelligent, ambitious, thin, and somewhat cute. Furthermore, I would like to find someone who is interested in pursuing a graduate degree or a doctorate of some sort, similar to myself. I recently acquired my bachelor's degree and am applying for medical school in the fall of 2018. My question to you is, are my standards too high? There is already a dearth of females in the fandom, and those that have a degree higher than a bachelor's degree are also in the minority. Would it be a waste of time to look for a fandom girl? Should I just look outside the fandom? If not, and you think it possible to find a girl in the fandom, how do you suggest I search for her? With so few women I am certain that plenty get offers left and right, how do I set myself apart?"
"Subject: Problem paws.
Question / Message / Feedback: Hi. To get right into it, my partner and I are at an odd sort of sexual disagreement. We're very in tune with each other sexually, having some of the same kinks, and a healthy respect twards one another for those we don't share, with one exception. I like feet, while he finds them repulsive. This would normally not be a problem, I'm content exploring this on my own, however he's very keen on trying to indulge me personally, which isn't exactly working. I've agreed to letting him try some foot play on several occasions, but eash time he seems so uncomfortable I ask to do something else. Recently he's been asking to try again, but I've turned him down because I'd rather do something fun for him, but this seems to upset him as well, and he tells me he'd like to try despite the fact he's not ok with that sort of play. I don't quite know what to do here, and any advice would be helpful.
" Subject: My boyfriend has been really indecisive about an open relationship for 4 years and I get really frustrated
Question / Message / Feedback: Hi there, I have got a situation for you. Maybe you will be able to help me with it. I have been with my boyfriend for 6 years now and been discussing about an open relationship for about 4 year, going back and forth since then. He seems very indecisive about this particular topic. As far as he is concerned, he tells me that he would probably not see other guys but that the fact I could sleep with other guys is one of his big fantasy, as he often tells when we're together. But, even though he has already pushed me to get in touch with other guys many times, he then retracted when things got ''too'' real (aka when I was starting to plan things). Everytime, a new reason why he will not let me do it pop up and I find myself a bit confused about what is really pushing him back from making this leap. I may add that he is sometimes using the whole open relationship thing as a bargaining chip : when we are arguing, he tells me that if I do not agree with him, then we will stay in a close relationship, no discussion allowed. Not only I feel like he is playing with me to get some arousal from his fantasy, but, as a matter of fact, I get really frustrated. Moreover, the whole situation cost me a few friends that were involved and many potential partners as I, myself, seem really indecisive to them. I tried to reassure my boyfriend, to listen to him. We talked a lot and I made some concessions I regret now (e.g. : let him read my discussion with my potential partners). I waited for him to be ready but now, he is telling me he could need a few more years to accept the idea of an open relationship or that it may never happen at all. Once, I even went zerk trying to be imperative about an open relationship after he backed off again a few hours before I was supposed to see a guy I have been planning to see for weeks with his benediction. In the end, I have mixed feelings about the whole situation. I feel lost and guilty. And frustrated. I am wondering what I am doing wrong… Maybe you guys could help me sorting things out ? Thank you so much.
PS : english is not my native tongue, so please be indulgent ;) "
Hi Metriko and Viro! I am writing to offer you my thanks (more on that at the end), and to provide a bit of additional insight into the Pickup Artist community.
I am a 31-year-old straight female wolf, and in my 20's I had a LTR with a non-furry PUA for 4 years. The PUA community was such a big part of his life that he wasn't able to hide it for the whole relationship. I became immersed in it too, via online forums. I'm embarrassed to admit that even after discovering what was going on, I was still very susceptible to his tactics.
If you delve deeply enough into the PUA community, they will convince you that they have the answers to everything, including long term relationships. They actually view themselves as benevolent saviors, possessing the keys to success with all sorts of relationships. They believe they can make men and women happier than they ever could be in normal society, because of their superior knowledge. Spoilers: they're wrong.
You are correct Metriko, that their techniques do not allow a man to be vulnerable. That is perhaps their biggest problem, because emotional connections with others can only be very shallow. Here are some more problems with their methods, ones that I have personally experienced.
Pickup Artists claim women don't know what they want. Whenever I would clearly express my desires to my ex, he would ignore me, and assume he knew better than I did.
They claim women don't enjoy polyamory, so they have to trick women into it. There's also a stigma against monogamy within the PUA community, so this results in tons of peer pressure to conduct unethically non-monogamous relationships.
They also claim that to craft the relationship you want, you can manipulate almost any woman into giving it to you, rather than just seeking out a woman whose relationship goals match your own.
The amount of deception that the community advocates towards women is staggering. You will, however, find some honest and morally upstanding poly men amongst their ranks. They are trying to change that community, and I appreciate their efforts.
At the end of the day, though, the main point of this community is to brag online, in explicit detail, about their sexual conquests. It's addicting for these men, and can leave them unable to experience validation in other aspects of their lives. This leaves them incredibly stunted.
To speak from the female side of things, I was trapped in an emotionally abusive situation, complete with a plethora of new insecurities. He admitted to fostering these insecurities on purpose, because it kept me doing what he wanted.
I got out of the relationship a few years ago, but it put a zap on my head. To this day I have a lot of work to do, building myself back up, and working on my own relationship skills. That's where you guys come in.
I've never found a resource as helpful as Feral Attraction. Your episodes on integrity and non-violent communication, in particular, have helped me more than anything else in my life. It sounds exaggerated, perhaps, but I mean it quite sincerely. I had a shitty Catholic upbringing. I had no one in my life whose morals or romantic skills I respected enough to ask advice from. But you guys, every week, are helping me become a better person. So thank you, a million times, from the bottom of my wolfy heart.
Next week’s topic: Regret sex
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