This podcast is for women in midlife that want to revive a floundering marriage.Often, when the kids leave a new phase of marriage begins. Unfortunately, many couples struggle to nurture this new phase because either they don't know what to do, or they have become apathetic about their marriage and resign themselves to accept things as is, even when what is, is less than satisfying. Maybe the conversations are perfunctory and shallow, the time you spend together doing meaningful and fun things is something of the past or the closeness you once felt, in the beginning, has waned. You might even question if staying is even worth it anymore. You can't go back to what you had before. Mature marriage needs a new approach. My marriage had been placed on the back burner as we raised children, dealt with chaotic schedules, built careers, managed a household, and sought financial stability. When our kids grew up and it was just the two of us again, our marriage was anorexic. We had three choices: stay miserable, divorce, or change our approach. We chose the latter, but we had to learn and implement new skills and practices, change old patterns, and start doing things differently with intention. My marriage is better today than it was in the beginning! In this podcast, I will be covering many topics related to the midlife marriage relationship, helping you look at what isn't working and giving you solid tips on how to revamp your marriage and make it thrive. Topics will include updating your communication approach, increasing intimacy, creating meaningful shared experiences, and a multitude of things in between that relate to the challenges of a midlife marriage. Whatever you are struggling with, in your marriage, you are not alone. Join me as I help you REVIVE YOUR MIDLIFE MARRIAGE.
Interview with Lee Jagger: Rocking the Bedroom-Part 2
There was this statement that I saw you say you've been asked this question. Why do women who love their husbands, not want to have sex with them? What is your take on why you can love your husband and not want to have sex? Is it tied to all of these other things you're talking about?
Yes. Really heavily tied to the what I said before about men needing sex to be connected synonymous with the word love, you know, so the guy is going to be thinking. If she loved me, she'd want to have sex with me. Women can have can be totally love of their husband. Like one of my clients just the other day, she said, Oh, I love my husband, we have a great time together. I wouldn't want to ever divorce him. I just wish he didn't have a penis. Oh, my gosh. I totally get it. Like, it's so like, Oh, it's the penis. If we could just like not ever have to go to bed, then we would have a great time. And, and she will she reminded me of that the other day, because she's currently going through my erotic massage mastery course. And it's changing everything. But she said to me the other day, Remember when I said that? Now she no longer feels like, Oh, I'm you know, not adverse to him having a penis anymore? Because now she knows what to do with it. Yeah, women can happily love a guy and not ever want to have sex with them. It happens all the time for women. And and it seems to be the lesser of two evils to be like, Oh, ho hum about the whole sex thing, then having obligatory sex. Obligatory sex is the greater of the two evils. So. Yeah, women can easily take that route, but it doesn't serve them in the long run by avoiding sex, because what's actually going to happen is those guys, a lot of the times they will look outside of the marriage, and then you got a whole different problem with the cheating thing. So yeah, it is not a fix to a relationship to just avoid having sex, you can make it really enjoyable.
I know people are like, well, there's no excuse for stepping out of the marriage. No, there's no excuse. But if the relationship is flailing in their sex life, like you say, it is indicative of what's going on in the relationship. Then, if you're not connected, I think it's a prime opportunity for either a man or a woman to look outside for a way to connect. And it happens all the time.
You can find the complete transcript of this conversation at http://reviveyourmidlifemarriage.com/44
Interview with Lee Jagger: Rocking the Bedroom-Part 1
Welcome to Episode 43, which is my interview with Lee Jagger about rocking the bedroom. Yep, that's what I said rock the bedroom. You may think Deanna now rocking the bedroom is the last thing on my mind at this point in my life. Ladies, it shouldn't be the last thing on your mind. A healthy and satisfying sex life is important to every thriving marriage is the physical component of rich intimacy. So if you think fun and exciting sex is a thing of the past like I have. Buckle up ladies for an information pack conversation with Lee Jagger. So who is this Lee Jagger and how can she help me? Well, Lee is the CEO and founder of Rock the Bedroom, the only sex education community of its kind. Lee is a sex expert and mindful intimacy coach. She helps women be more confident, creative, and playful in the bedroom, specializing in erotic massage. She makes it easy for women to embrace their power and take charge between the sheets. Lee has taught in person and in online workshops internationally, and help women move from a stale, same old sex routine to the next level of passionate playtime. It's her mission, to normalize conversations around sexuality and make obligatory sex to become a thing of the past.
Welcome to the show.
I appreciate that introduction. I'm honored to be on the show because I love what you represent. And you really foster connection and cultivating intimacy within a marriage. And that is really all about what I do. So I'm happy to be a part of this party.
So glad you are. I just appreciate you taking the time. I really do. I can't think of a better person, a woman in midlife to tell other women in midlife what they can do to shake things up a bit. You get us? Yes, I do. I feel Yeah. So I have to ask this because I'm very curious. What was the impetus for you to become a sex expert and erotic massage coach?
Is that is a fabulous question. It's a fun story to tell actually. And it took me years to be able to tell this. So several years ago, and I can't believe that I'm actually in the position I'm in right now as a sex expert and erotic massage coach because I knew nothing. bedroom, I was very passive. I was a sexual wallflower, if you may, and I did not know how to touch a penis. I just did not have that skill set. But several years ago, I was completely broke. A 10-year-old son living in a hoarder's house just came from being homeless actually. So like really bottom-of-the-barrel moment of my life. And, and I put an ad on Craigslist for Swedish massage, because I knew I had a little bit of skill set with that bare minimum I could probably scrape by and I thought, oh, maybe I could do that. And this woman who answered the ad, she said I actually bought an office and I let go a bunch of girls who didn't actually know how to do a massage. But you look like you know what you're doing? Have you ever thought of an erotic massage job? And I'm I had no idea what she was talking about. I didn't know that world at all. And I said at the happy ending? And she said yes. And I said no. Yeah, no, no, thank you. That is so not my dealio other than the fact that I didn't know how to do an erotic massage, but I also didn't want to deal with the clientele who I thought I'd have to deal with in that profession.
The complete transcript can be found at http://reviveyourmidlifemarriage.com/43
How Not Sharing Your Struggles with Your Husband Can Cause Disconnect
I, like you, go through tough times, and it affects my marriage.
You, see I've been in a real funk lately. I'm experiencing so many things for the first time, and quite frankly, I have no experience with it and am finding it hard to navigate. And what's worse? I don't want to talk about it. I see myself in a shut-down phase. Do you ever go through things like this?
I'm 52, and I'm peri-menopausal, which is causing me anxiety I've never experienced before. I feel like I'm coming out of my skin all the time. My brain is in a complete fog where I forget so many things, big and small. I've been having telehealth appointments with my doctor since the pandemic started. Yesterday, I drove to the doctor for my appointment, went up to the door, and saw the sign that said the office isn't open and all doctors are making telehealth appointments. Ladies, this has been going on for a year, and I forgot it. I can't even think of names I know like the back of my hand. For two months, I've missed the same bill. Added to that, I've embarked on a new career in my midlife years and dealing with the further stress of being an entrepreneur. I feel like I'm riding on the crazy train.
See my funk?
I don't intentionally shut my husband out when I'm going through a difficult season, but that is my habit. I don't even realize I'm doing it until the gulf gets pretty broad. I become aware of it when I start going my separate way, being only willing to engage in surface conversations, and living in my head instead of connecting. The relationship becomes perfunctory.
So, why, if we know intimacy is about sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly, do we close down sometimes when we are struggling with something in our lives? I believe it is because of the messages we hear inside our heads and from a society that tells us to be strong, power through, be a badass.
Here's what I know from my own experience and my husband's because he goes through seasons of this too. We revert to old habits of trying to deal with our problems independently, and pretty soon, we are disconnected.
The messages that cause us to pull away are as follows:
"I should be stronger."
"I don't want to be a weak person who is needy."
"If my spouse knew what was going on with me, they'd think less of me."
"My spouse couldn't possibly understand what is going on with me."
"These are my problems, and I need to figure it out."
"Something is wrong with me."
"I don't want to be a burden."
"My spouse will think I'm crazy."
Complete show notes can be found at http://reviveyourmidlifemarriage.com/42
Why Sorry Is Not Enough
Have you heard this line? Love means never having to say I’m sorry. What a bunch of baloney. If you are in a loving relationship and you don’t say I’m sorry on a regular basis, you probably are on your way to having nothing meaningful in your relationship. When you can’t see much less own your mistakes, you will alienate everyone around you.
But, is sorry enough? Absolutely not. If all you say is sorry over and over again, never changing your behavior, it becomes an empty phrase that no one takes seriously. I’m sorry is just the beginning.
When I studied relationships at the Gottman Institute, I learned a term I’d never heard before. It was called the repair attempt.
A repair is when something has gone wrong and there is an intentional attempt to repair or fix the situation. Like a bridge over water, without maintenance and repairs, the elements can deteriorate the strength of the bridge until it is no longer passable. The elements that can deteriorate your marriage are unhealthy patterns of behavior that while being second nature, what you’ve always done, can over time tear away at the relationship.
In order to attempt a repair, there must be humility. Humility allows you to own your part in the problem because we usually have a role to play. Now, we make excuses and say, “Well, if he or she hadn’t done that then I wouldn’t have acted that way. That’s not humility and owning your actions. That justification. There is no justification for bad behavior. It might feel good at the moment, but it will tear away at your marriage.
So, humility helps you own your own part. Another thing that humility will help you do is to consider your and your husband's actions or reactions from a place of openness. When we are humble enough to consider the feelings of others, to see their point of view, to respect their humanity, we can be open to change. Someone who rests on their false pride can’t see or acknowledge the truth of the situation. You’ve probably heard the phrase pride goes before the fall. Pride will keep you from making a repair attempt every single time.
You will find complete show notes at http://reviveyourmidlifemarriage.com/41
Are You a Director or Influencer in Your Marriage?
Today I'll cover the difference between being a director and an influencer, why directing will cause resistance, and how to break the director's pattern and become a powerful influencer in your marriage.
Directors are those that like to be in control. Their motives are not necessarily selfish. After all, they believe they are ensuring success. They think they know best. You or your husband may be a director at work as the assigned leader, but those skills don't work well in an equal partnership. Marriages must be in a state of equilibrium; otherwise, they are made up of two opposing forces. Now, you may not or may not be the director in the marriage. It might be your husband. I'll cover how to handle that in a moment.
An influencer, on the other hand, is encouraging someone to buy-in. Social media influencers influence others to buy a product or sign up for their services. They focus on letting their audience see the value of what they are bringing to the table and how it might benefit their lives. An influencer doesn't use force but gently encourages. They offer partnership in getting the outcome most desired.
Remember when you were raising your children? When my children were young, giving directions was pretty commonplace, but I got the best results when I asked them to do things over telling them and by explaining why I was giving the directive. I remember trying to be creative in getting them on board. Each of my children was very different, and I had to vary my approach for each. I engaged them to work with me, not against me. Every parenting book I read talked about how to communicate effectively with your children to achieve this. As they became teenagers, I had to get even more creative because they naturally wanted more control over themselves and their choices. That's the natural progression to adulthood. We want a say in things. Being directed feels like we are being treated like a child that doesn't know any better. What if we brought these skills to our marriage? They are just influencer skills for all relationships if you think about it.
I've heard grown adults say these very things before, You're not my mother, or If I wanted a father, I'd stayed at home. The only grown adult that will be directed is the one who is getting a paycheck, and even then, they may do so begrudgingly. However, most companies today are using psychology to work with employees to influence, not dictate. There is a greater awareness of the benefits for a company. Employees feel they are more empowered and likely to stay with the company. Bosses who disregard and talk down to employees are usually not well-liked and harder to respect.
So, how do you change from being a director to an influencer in your marriage? It is all about intention and delivery.
You can find the complete show notes at http://reviveyourmidlifemarriage.com/40
How Our Family of Origin Stories Affect the Marriage-Part 2
Last week I talked about the 4 roles we can play in our family of origins as we grow up, what it looks like in your marriage, and how to manage it.
This week I'm going to take it a step further. I'll cover how the family of origin stories can cause perpetual problems in the relationship. I'll talk about looking back at your stories, how you and your husband can share those stories as a way to improve your understanding of each other, and how to find a middle-grown that serves you both.
Just a recap. Family of origin stories comes from the family you grew up in. It can determine your thoughts, beliefs, and habits.
Many of the perpetual problems in our marriages are not because we are incompatible. It is usually because our family of origin stories is different, bringing together different ways of being. Trouble spots can surface in how you and your husband deal with finances, parenting, communicating. And, You'll see it in the various ways you perceive things, emotionally respond, and handle conflict, just to name a few.
Look at the past
So, let's start by talking about looking back at your stories to understand why you and your husband believe and think the way you do. Typically in dysfunctional homes, we do one of two things. We perpetuate our parents' beliefs and behaviors, whether positive or negative. If those beliefs and behaviors were negative, you might swing to the opposite end of the pendulum. Neither end of the pendulum is at risk of being extreme.
For instance, if you or your husband grew up in a highly volatile home where conflict resulted in angry, demeaning words, you may avoid conflict altogether, or you may be perpetuating that volatile behavior in the battles you have in your marriage.
Suppose you or your husband's parents were emotionally or physically absent from each other. In that case, you may be overly indulgent with your children and your husband, smothering them. Or you may be just as emotionally or physically distant.
Maybe you or your husband's parents lived beyond their means and were dealing with consuming debt. You may do the same or fear financial scarcity and hold on to your money like a miser.
The rub that results in the marriage is when you and your husband believe or behave differently. It causes perpetual problems in the relationship because you are coming at things from your different family of origin stories.
You can find complete show notes at http://reviveyourmidlifemarriage.com/39
Wow, what an episode! Deanna always has thought-provoking questions, and this one was no exception. This was so fun to listen to and I could hear “female empowerment” dripping from my speakers. Well done, Deanna, and thank you for talking about a topic that is not talked about enough.
I found this podcast on accident. However, I quickly subscribed after hearing only a few minutes of the first episode. Unlike so many other female-hosted podcasts about relationships, Deanna shares techniques for improving your marriage without implying that the listener feel solely guilty/responsible for the current state of their relationship. I mostly appreciate Deanna’s willingness to share her own personal experiences as they tie into each weekly topic.
One of my favorites!!!
This podcast is so full of valuable info for anyone who seeks to understand midlife marriage. I’ve shared this show with so many of my friends who are also finding the info Deanna shares to be very insightful and helpful!! Keep going I am a faithful fan!!