How Your Relationship Life Evolves from the Very First One

Your first relationship has a huge effect on the relationship that come afterward.

Having your first relationship is such a steep learning curve — you’re learning how to be a good partner, you may be having sex for the first time, you’re dealing with your first relationships fights, and, inevitably, your first breakup. But even after the breakup, it’s not over. Your first relationship has a huge effect on the relationship that come afterward. Exactly how much varies from relationship to relationship — and how long you have between them.

If you’re like me and tend to wait a long time between relationships, then there’s a better chance that — while you’ll still have some old habits and hangups — baggage may be less present and inform your relationship less. My first boyfriend liked Dungeons and Dragons way more than he liked me, and I’m totally over it. (Totally. Tote. A. Ly.)

It also depends how good or bad your first relationship was. If you had a horrible or traumatic relationship, those cuts may feel even deeper and fresher as you go into your next one, so your first relationship is going to carry over with you more. If your first relationship was more a case of just trying to be a grownup, no training wheels, and it sort of fizzled out, it probably own’t have the same hold on you. But it’s always there, to some degree or another.

Here’s how your first relationship shapes all the ones after:

1. It Can Help Form Your “Type”

Whether your first love is a brunette bombshell, a red head, short or tall— it sticks with you. Even if you don’t mean to do it, or actively seek it out, there’s a good chance that you’ll start to seek out similar types. Maybe that type is nerdy brunettes… maybe, possibly.

2. Or Who You Avoid

… or, if it was a seriously bad relationship, there’s a chance that you’ll end up hating brunettes or blondes and avoiding them for no good reason. Relationships can leave a bad taste in your mouth, bad enough to avoid anything that looks remotely similar.

3. Your Learn Good And Bad Habits

The first time you’re in a relationship is really formative — you learn how relationships work. Or at least you think you do. The good and the bad habits you form during your first relationship are hard to shake. If you learn how to listen and be supportive, that’s great, but if every tiny disagreement turns into a massive fight, so you just stop communicating, then you learn that habit too, and it can be really damaging for future relationships. You have to be sure to take the positive into your future relationships, but be willing to let go of bad habits.

Men Share These Inner Considerations on What Makes an Ideal Girlfriend

“What makes a gal girlfriend material?”

When it comes to getting a man to settle down with you, we’ve all heard advice like “hold out on sex” or “be unavailable.” But if that worked, nuns, Olympic athletes, and frigid work-a-holics would be like dude catnip. So, clearly, we need to go straight to the source to find out what makes a man wanna call you his girl. We asked a bunch of guys this: “What makes a gal girlfriend material?” Turns out, it isn’t a big ol’ juicy bandokandok. Their real answers might surprise you …

“A keeper is someone you feel at home around. Sex is good and all, but it’s nice when you can feel yourself around them without trying to impress them. Someone who makes me laugh is always a plus, or that we can laugh at the same stuff. Also, it’s nice to feel like I’m not the only thing that’s of interest to her, I like someone who is driven creatively and has their own thing going on. Otherwise, a lady is in danger of smothering and that’s no fun for anyone. A good lady should inspire you to be a better person, and vice versa.” – Robert, 30

“I know she’s girlfriend material when no matter what’s going on, you feel better seeing a text from her, or when she walks into the room.” – Brad, 28

“Hard to say. I think it’s personality and the way she handles herself in different situations. Someone who is high-maintenance, or can’t hang out with my friends is a no-no. So, I guess that would be it — she has to be able to hang out with my friends, but also keep her feminine side intact while doing so. And loyalty is a big thing too. Usually, when she’s hanging out with my friends, I can tell where that loyalty resides.” – Josh, 31

Why Independent Women Are Saying No. Would You?

I see these changes in my friends and family and in the clients who come to me for marriage and family counseling.

These changes have taken place, for the most part, under the radar of our awareness but they are changing everything from how we deal with our health to who we elect as our next president.

A recent book review in the New York Times, from which the above picture was taken, begins:

“Throughout America’s history, the start of adult life for women — whatever else it might have been destined to include — had been typically marked by marriage,” Rebecca Traister writes in her new book, All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation. “Since the late 19th century, the median age of first marriage for women had fluctuated between 20 and 22. This had been the shape, pattern and definition of female life.”

But the times are changing, big time. An article in New York Magazine quotes Ms. Traister’s research:

“In 2009, the proportion of American women who were married dropped below 50 percent. In other words, for the first time in American history, single women (including those who were never married, widowed, divorced, or separated) outnumbered married women. Perhaps even more strikingly, the number of adults younger than 34 who had never married was up to 46 percent, rising 12 percentage points in less than a decade. For women under 30, the likelihood of being married has become astonishingly small: Today, only around 20 percent of Americans ages 18–29 are wed, compared to nearly 60 percent in 1960.”

“It is a radical upheaval, a national reckoning with massive social and political implications,” says Traister. “Across classes, and races, we are seeing a wholesale revision of what female life might entail. We are living through the invention of independent female adulthood as a norm, not an aberration, and the creation of an entirely new population: adult women who are no longer economically, socially, sexually, or reproductively dependent on or defined by the men they marry.”

16 Women On The One Thing They Appreciate Most From A Man In Bed

Your sex life might be good, but here’s how you’ll make it better for her.

Last night I was sitting at a bar with a friend getting drinks. I saw a hot guy across the bar drinking a Coors Banquet, eating chips and salsa, watching the game on TV. He looked completely uninterested in everything going on around him, as he sat there alone, never looking away from what was right in front of him.

“The man in the baseball hat across from us is so hot,” I said to my friend.

“Yeah, he really is. Just by the looks of him though, I bet he wouldn’t go down on a girl in bed, he’d just expect you to do all the work,” she said.

She probably wasn’t wrong, but we’ll never know if the man at the bar drinking a Coors Banquet could please a woman the way she wants to be pleased.

The conversation inspired me to ask 16 women from my life and the Internet what they appreciate most from a man in bed, here are their answers:

1.  “I appreciate a guy that tends to my needs first before he *expects* me to put his dick in my mouth. It shows he cares a little more for me than just the sex and that he also cares about making me feel good in bed.” – Jess, 24

2.  “When the guy actually wants me to orgasm and is turned on by it rather than just focusing on himself getting off. That is not enjoyable and it doesn’t make me want to continue to have sex with him when he’s only focused on himself.” – Lacey, 23

3.  “When you can openly say what you like and they actually listen to you, instead just assuming I like what they’re doing, especially when it’s in the moment. It makes the connection better and it’s way more fun for both of us.” – Sara, 28

4.  ‘“I appreciate when a man communicates in bed. Silent sex is boring and awkward. I want to know that your world is being rocked, what you want more or less of, how good it all feels or asking me to ride you harder or who my pussy belongs to. That’s the kind of stuff that turns me on and makes it WAY more enjoyable.” – Catrina, 27

5.  “Open, honest, raw and real communication about wants, needs and desires without judgement.” – Julia, 36

6.  “The warmth that radiates from their body.” – Macy, 26

7.  “His voice when he cherishes me.” – Emily, 30

romantic couple

8.  “I appreciate when a man acknowledges other parts of my body than just my tits and ass. I know he’s enjoying my ass when he’s grabbing it but it would be nice to be reminded that he also thinks I’m beautiful or that he likes my eyes. It makes me feel like less of a just a body for him to fuck and more like he appreciates me.” – Kaitlyn, 33

9.  “FOREPLAY! I get that he can go from 0 to 100 real quick, but like, I don’t. I appreciate when a man is gentle and slow, instead of just trying to do it quickly (unless that is what we’re going for). I want foreplay, it makes everything feel better and makes me so much more into the sex.” – Bella, 26

10.  “I appreciate when a man takes control. I am strong and independent as hell, but the bedroom is the one and only place I want to be dominated by a man. I want him to be rough, to a healthy extent, and take control. That is so hot to me and such a turn on.” – Nicole, 34

11.  “A man who makes sure I also cum! I’m sick of dudes cumming then just flopping down beside me all out of breath. Like that’s awesome he just got a load off, but he better not think he’s done without making sure I’m taken care of. Not how it works, buddy.” – Rachel, 23

12.  “I appreciate a man who is willing to try new things with me in bed. Routine is boring, even in the bedroom. Doing missionary then finishing doggy style gets old REAL quick. I want some excitement and I appreciate a man who is also into switching things up and experimenting in the bedroom.” – Cheryl, 41

13.  “His praise telling me he likes what I’m doing. I enjoy giving him head but only when he communicates to me that he likes what I’m doing. It makes me feel really good and I appreciate his words of affirmation.” – Kylie, 25

14.  “When a man is aggressive with me, but only after we’ve communicated what we’d like to do to each other and are on the same page. It allows me to feel more comfortable with him and myself in bed.” – Michaela, 29

15.  “A guy who takes things slow and makes me feel special, when he kisses down my neck, whispers in my ear, tells me that I’m beautiful. Those things all make me feel so appreciated and confirms that I’m not just someone he wants to fuck but actually cares about. Sometimes it’s so easy to feel worthless in bed and like I don’t matter so when he does little things like that it shows me he really cares.” – Brooke, 24

16.  “When he stays and cuddles after! There is no worse feeling than when a guy comes over, has sex with you and leaves. When he stays and I know he enjoys spending time with me after it makes me feel so loved and cared for.”  – Suzy, 23

May this information empower you to new and exciting adventures!

For more ways to please women, check out: Tongue-Tied During Sex? Here’s the Sexy Talk Women Want to Hear.