By Annakeara Stinson - Bustle
Whether you’re on your own or with someone else, adding sex toys into your sex life can be a little intimidating. But if you're feeling like you need to shake things up in the pleasure department, toys are always a particularly popular suggestion. And while, yes, vibrators and plugs and all the rest can be a fun way to explore your sexuality, if that’s not of interest to you, that’s all good. There are plenty of things to try if you aren't ready for sex toys that are just as exciting and pleasurable, if not more so. It's all about getting creative with your mind and body!
By Arielle Tschinkel, INSIDER
Sexting is extremely common these days. Recent studies say 74% of American adults and 67% of international adults admit to sending or receiving explicit texts, photos, or videos, and most of them say they are in committed relationships.
But it's not just coupled-up adults that are sexting — sexting among teens has increased, with a 2018 study published in JAMA Pediatrics revealing that 14.8% and 27.4% of teens admitting to sending and receiving sexts, a number that has steadily increased since 2009, when smartphones and tablets began to gain prevalence for many people.
Today we’d like to introduce you to Melissa Coats.
Melissa, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I consider myself fortunate that from a young age I was able to identify my passion. My journey to becoming a psychotherapist started with inspiration from my mother. She would consistently remind me that the people around me had a story worth hearing, and to be curious, not judgmental about others’ experiences. We traveled together. Despite the fact that she was a single mother working four jobs, she somehow managed to find the time, energy, and resources to introduce me to a world full of vibrant and amazing people. I became fascinated by the stories I heard, lessons I learned, and the resilience of the human spirit.
By Charlotte Hilton Andersen, Reader’s Digest
What you didn’t learn in high school sex ed: the surprising, science-backed proof about aphrodisiac foods, men’s and women’s desire, and more.
Myth: Sex burns major calories
Truth: Experts estimate thirty minutes of sex burns 85 to 150 calories. Theoretically, you need to burn about 3,500 calories to lose a pound of body weight, so if you were using up 100 calories every time you had sex, you could lose one pound if you had sex 35 times. The problem is this: Most people are not having sex for thirty minutes. Instead, the average duration of sex is closer to five minutes. In fact, the biggest increase in your heart rate and blood pressure during sex only occurs for about fifteen seconds during orgasm, and then things quickly return back to normal. Sex may not burn a lot of calories, but having sex once a week can actually help you live longer.
Charlotte Hilton Andersen, Reader's Digest
We include everything from why wearing socks is sexier than lingerie to how sleeping with your wife can get you ahead with your boss.
Nearly 10 percent of all dreams include sex
Sex dreams aren’t just the territory of horny teenage boys. In fact, nearly one in ten dreams contain some R-rated sexual content—and that’s true for both men and women, according to a study published by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. There were some gender differences though: Women were more likely to have sex dreams about politicians, celebrities, or their exes while men were more likely to dream about having sex with multiple partners at once. Check out these sex facts about committed couples.
By Carolyn Steber, Bustle
Some conversations are easier to have than others, especially when it comes to saying difficult things to your partner. It can be tempting to sweep certain issues under the rug, as a way of avoiding conflict, tension, and discomfort. But if something's eating away at you, it's best to get it all out for your own sake — as well as the health of your relationship.
By Arielle Tschinkel, INSIDER
When you're not enjoying sex, you might be wondering why, but the truth is that our sex drives are impacted by so many things. Both your physical and mental health can be the cause of a low libido. Stress, certain medications, and a feeling of shame could all be reasons you may not be enjoying sex.
Your sex drive is determined by so many factors and it can constantly change depending on what's going on in your life, as well as your physical and mental health. Whether you're dealing with short-term or long-term sexual dissatisfaction, it's normal to wonder why you're not enjoying sex.
Start the new year with actually useful goals.
By Paige Smith, HuffPost
When it comes to New Year’s resolutions, people are either staunch defenders of the practice or vocal critics. On one hand, resolutions provide purpose and structure for those interested in self-improvement; on the other hand, they tend not to work.
Most people quit their resolutions after a couple of months, said Melissa Coats, a licensed professional counselor, psychotherapist and owner of Coats Counseling in Georgia. If you struggle with anxiety or feelings of inadequacy, she explained, the pressure to succeed can be particularly damaging.
By Jennifer Chesak, Healthline
Medically reviewed by Timothy J. Legg, PhD, CRNP
How to build your own personal and emotional space
Our personal boundaries aren’t as obvious as a fence or a giant “no trespassing” sign, unfortunately. They’re more like invisible bubbles. Even though personal boundaries can be challenging to navigate, setting and communicating them is essential for our health, well-being, and even our safety.
“Boundaries give a sense of agency over one’s physical space, body, and feelings,” says Jenn Kennedy, a licensed marriage and family therapist. “We all have limits, and boundaries communicate that line.”
by AnnaMarie Houlis, SheKnows
Though for many, they’re a joyful time and, for some, even relaxing, the holidays can be particularly stressful for those with sick loved ones at home.
More than 65 million people — about 29 percent of the U.S. population — spend an average of 20 hours per week providing care for a chronically ill, disabled or elderly family member or friend, according to the National Alliance for Caregiving.