Sexual Rhythms in Relationships

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What makes us desire a particular individual from among a group? Is it looks, is it cultural expectations, or could it be something genetic in our makeup?

For centuries men have been trying to resolve the riddle of attraction. In this week’s podcast Brett Newcomb and I are talking about the processes involved in physical attraction among people as well as the issues that seem to develop in relationships that impact their ability to endure. We begin by talking about what Harvard Sociobiologist Edward Wilson refers to as the breeding strategies of men and women.  Dr. Wilson contends that women developed constant states of Estrus so that they would be fertile year round (not “seasonally”) this meant that men would have to stay around and protect and provide for the women who became pregnant in order to protect their investment in their progeny. From this pattern, Wilson believes that “nesting” and families evolved. When he discusses the strategies of males for breeding he talks about spreading their seed as widely and frequently as they could in order to maximize their chances of passing along their genes.

Many people do not find this theory to be attractive or believable. Theories around topics like attraction and beauty or the sense that is nonverbally communicated regarding someone’s health and the likelihood of their ability to breed and take care of their children and their families and homes abound. Many of the subsequent things we talk about today involve these theories and other topics that arise from the general topic of relationship maintenance.

In this podcast we discuss the signaling process among mates regarding the desire for sexual experiences and the methods and behaviors people use to communicate around this. One of the most damaging habits that couples fall into in relationships is the habit of assumptive communications.  We talk about how couples learn to talk about things sexual, about what they want, what they like, when and how they want things done.  There are many cultural and or religious roadblocks that can interfere with this communication and many people are embarrassed to talk about sex so they hint with thinly veiled behaviors called cueing behaviors.

There can be problems which develop as a result of communication problems since only 7% of a directly exchanged communication consists of the words one uses and 38% facial and body gestures and 55% of the message consists of tone and expressions within the voice. As you can imagine this leads to confusion and frustration at times.  Additionally problems can arise from physical issues like low testosterone and lost libido or from the amount of stress and anxiety one is experiencing globally in their lives or just in their relationship. ED drugs, beta blockers, anti depressants, all can inhibit desire and impact performance.

Listen to our podcast to learn more about how our relationships can be impacted by the physical rhythms of our bodies as well as the cultural and relational patterns of our lives.

This Health cast was written and presented by Dr. Kathy Maupin, M.D., Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Expert and Author, with Brett Newcomb, MA., LPC., Family Counselor, Presenter and Author.  

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