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So, love it or hate it, there's no denying that The Notebook has earned its reputation as one of the most romantic movies of all time.

And even though it has become one of the ultimate Valentine's Day clichés, we're not sure we'll ever get bored of the young couple's rollercoaster romance.

But, while Noah and Allie might seem like the ultimate couple goals, relationship experts aren't buying it.

According to Stylist, a group of romantic experts recently sat down with Time Out to discuss some of the best and worst romantic films of all time.

The list was surprising to say the least, but perhaps The Notebook was the most puzzling choice of all.

We know what you're thinking. How could a romantic expert of all people decide that this was a bad film?

Well, according to psychotherapist, Gupreet Singh, Nicolas Sparks' story is actually too perfect.

He explained: “Noah restores a house for Allie. He writes letter after letter waiting for her. They die holding hands. Talk about idealised love! If you believe in it you start to think: I shouldn’t settle for less.”

“But most average couples are nothing like that. We are humans, we are fallible. Love is imperfect because we are.”

Now, we're not saying he hasn't got a point, but isn't it nice to fantasise every once in a while?

The Notebook was never meant to be a factual retelling of true events, but instead a fictional account of love at its best and at its worst – and in that sense, we think it did a pretty good job.

Sure, most of us probably won't find anyone willing to send us handwritten letters every day for a year, but it's nice to see that this kind of true love really does exist – even if it is just up on the big screen.

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Discovering your other half has cheated on you has to be one of the most soul-destroying experiences a person can endure.

Even though it should never be considered a reflection on you, it undoubtedly leads most of us to question ourselves, our self-worth and our impression of other people.

So far, so hideous, right? Well, according to scientists, the experience isn't ALL bad, and actually helps the injured parties in more ways than we can ever imagine when we're crying ourselves to sleep and forgetting to wash our hair.

In a study conducted by Binghamton University in conjunction with University College London, researchers asked more than 5,500 participants to assess the repercussions of failed relationships and the outcome of infidelity.

According to the researchers' findings, women who have been cheated on tend to develop higher levels of emotional intelligence.

Commenting on this, research associate Craig Morris said: "Most women who have lost a mate to another women report a 'silver lining' of higher mating intelligence."

"What this means, in their words, is that they are more attuned to cues of infidelity in a future mate, more aware of how other women interact with their mate, have more self confidence and more self-awareness, and independence in general," he concluded.

In the words of Kelis, might trick me once, I won't let you trick me twice…

 

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The holidays can make you feel pretty miserable about your single status, but fear not, because science has some good news for you.

Apparently, unmarried women are actually happier than those who are married. The Guardian stated that unmarried and childless women are the happiest subgroup ever.

This is according to behavioural science professor Paul Dolan.

He even claimed that unmarried women will live longer than their married peers.

The happiness expert said, “We do have some good longitudinal data following the same people over time, but I am going to do a massive disservice to that science and just say: if you’re a man, you should probably get married; if you’re a woman, don’t bother.”

He explained that marriage helped men calm down, however, women didn’t benefit as much. Marred men take fewer risks and even live longer.

“She, on the other hand, has to put up with that, and dies sooner than if she never married. The healthiest and happiest population subgroup are women who never married or had children,” he added.

So, if you’re feeling a bit down in the dumps about your bare engagement finger then cheer up because it turns out being unmarried is actually way better than we expected.

However, if Ryan Gosling was to turn up and pop the question, we’d have to take one for the team and say yes.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Sorry, science.

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Breaking up is hard to do, and there is no other term for it other than it completely, totally sucks.

Whether you were broken up with or you had to do the breaking up, moving on can be tough no matter how the relationship met its demise.

While we may just want to bury our heads in a bucket of ice cream and vegetate in front on Netflix, there is apparently a new way to speed up the healing process of a broken heart. 

According to science, there is a breakup trick that will help you get over your ex-lover much faster. 

Apparently, just thinking that you are over them makes you over them. Here's how it works:

A research team from the University of Colorado Boulder ran tests on participants who had recently experienced a ‘romantic rejection,’ and half were given a placebo feel good drug to see how they coped with the feelings. 

The participants were studied in a brain imaging lab while recalling details of their breakup while staring at a picture of their ex. Intense.

The half of the group which were given the 'feel good' placebo drug were more over their previous relationship than those who weren't.

So it seems that just telling yourself that you're okay is half the battle. 

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While we love our romantic partners dearly, there are few things in life we cherish as much as spending time with our best friend.

From those times we laugh so much it hurts to those difficult moments when they're a shoulder to cry on, our BFFs are absolute gems.

There's nothing like just hanging out with our bestie for the evening, listening to music or drinking wine or talking about literally anything under the sun.

It's no wonder, then, that a recent survey shows that just over 50 percent of UK women said they feel closer to their best friend than their husband.

The 1,517 survey respondents gave a number of reasons for why they prefer their BFF to their significant other, with communication playing an especially big role.

57 percent of women who prefer their best friend to their husband said that it was because they can talk to their favourite gal pal about everything, Metro reports.

The research by Champneys also showed that 45 percent of women prefer their bestie because she listens to them more.

As well, 44 percent said that they could tell their best friend things that they didn't feel they could tell their partner.

When it comes to enjoying indulgent pleasures, 30 percent of the 1,517 women polled said they'd rather spend a boozy brunch with their mates than their partner.

Men are also apparently missing out on the spa days, with 54 percent of the respondents said they'd prefer to spend a pampering session with their pals than with their husband.

With those results in mind, we weren't surprised to hear that 60 percent of women reported that their all-female social gatherings would be better if men didn't intrude at all.

So here's to our BFFs – they've seen us through the good, the bad, and the very, very ugly.

 

How do you feel about the survey's results?

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Christmas is an expensive time of year. We have yet to start our Christmas shopping yet, but the list seems never-ending. We need to buy a gift for our sister, best friend, work wife, parents and even the dog.

Oh and don’t forget about bae.

Or maybe you could if you plan on being guilty of the cheapest dating trend.

Scrooging is a dating trend that’s growing in popularity and it is not pleasant.

Ever get dumped just before Christmas and wonder what went wrong? Things seemed all fine and dandy and then bam! You’re single again and hoping to God you can get a refund on the surprise weekend away you booked as a gift to beau.

Well, according to Metro, scrooging is essentially dumping your other half so you don’t have to buy them a Christmas present.

Yes, you read that right.

Apparently, one in ten are guilty of this dating trend and men are more likely to do it. Not surprised, to be honest.

Relationship expert for EHarmony, Rachael Lloyd, told Metro, “We know that relationships can often become less of a priority in the run up to Christmas. It’s also a time when dating significantly slows down. 

“However, it seems particularly miserly to end a relationship simply to avoid buying your partner a present and indicates that you weren’t ready for a romantic commitment in the first place.”

Staying single just seems like a much easier option.

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There are many things we’d like to forget about our teenage years; the emo phase, the streaky tan, the concealer covered lips, the cringey duck face poses and most of all- your first crush.

Whether it was the boy who lived down the street or Disney’s ‘It Boy’ of the time Zac Efron, we all had our fair share of playground and popstar crushes.

There are many we’d like to forget, especially ones whose names will forever be scribbled in the back of our geography copies.

We develop crushes from quite a young age, the average being aged 12, but we can’t help but wonder why we feel this way.

What causes the butterflies in our stomachs, the glint in our eye when we spot them in town, the feeling of frustration when we don’t hear from them and that elation when we do?

We spoke to psychologist Rachel Tomlinson about catching feels, feeling smitten and the impact it all has on our mind.

First things first, why on earth do we fall for people? We all understand just how complicated and stressful dating and relationships can be, so why does our mind crave affection like there’s no tomorrow?

“We have these feelings because humans are social creatures and we are driven to try and form relationships with other people.

“We want relationships and crave them. These relationships keep us safe, both mentally and physically and having reciprocal and positive relationships is good for our health and stress levels,” Rachel explained.

We all want to find the Harry to our Meghan, the Miley to our Liam and the Beyoncé to our Jay-Z, but it isn’t as straightforward as we wish it was.

We fret about what to wear for that first date, we panic about coming across as too eager or whether we are making a good impression.

We beat ourselves up when they don’t respond to us, we worry about winning them over or if they’re ‘the one’.

The impact it has on our mind is pretty intense at times. 

“Having strong, mutually beneficial relationships (including romantic ones) make us feel good and give us a sense of social connection which is healthy. However, issues can arise when relationships end or crushes aren’t reciprocated.

“If people have recently become single or are experiencing overwhelming feelings of love and lust that aren’t returned it can result in stress, lowered immunity, poor physical and potentially exacerbate mental health issues,” she stressed.

We all want a significant other, crush or lover to feel the same as we do. We crave that attention, love and desire like a cup of coffee at 6 am on a Monday morning.

“Your brain responds to this attraction by signalling the release of chemicals: dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin. These are feel-good chemicals and people can experience excitement, excess physical energy (including heart racing, sweaty palms etc) and giddy/joyful feelings,” Rachel continued.

Testosterone and oestrogen are also released and we feel lust.

This combination of chemicals gives us a rush like no other, but they can become addictive. “People often find that they crave the presence of their crush to get more of those feelings, resulting in (sometimes) quite obsessive thought patterns. Having a crush can feel as though your brain and body have been hijacked by this new love (or lust).”

It’s a natural feeling that has been built into our minds for generations and generations. Your 85-year-old granny once got butterflies at a dance in the 1950s. Your mam definitely swooned over Rob Lowe during the 1980s. Your big brother definitely shed secret tears when his childhood crush went to the debs with his best friend. Your co-worker certainly worries about what to wear on that all too important first date. The guy sitting next to you on the bus no doubt gets butterflies when bumping into his college love after years apart.

It’s a feeling we’re all going to have to get used to because as Emily Dickinson once said ‘the heart want what it wants or else it does not care.'

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If you’re sick of seeing loved-up couples this Christmas and think being single at this time of year totally sucks, just remember, the pair that just passed you have probably put that day’s festive-based argument on pause to keep up appearances for the public.

That 'perfect' couple have most likely had more than one argument over whose family they should spend Christmas with, whose group of friends they’ll go out with over New Years and who forgot that Christmas Eve was meant to be Christmas movie night and organised a night on the beer instead.

Here are just five reasons why being single at Christmas is a major win

1. You don’t have to worry about hiding your hungover face in front of the in-laws.

"No, I’m fine. I always look this green and clammy."

2. You don’t have to spend hours traipsing through ‘boy’ shops looking for an Xbox game you’re certain you got him for this birthday.

"What’s Fortnite? Actually, I don't care. Just give it to me."

3. You save a LOT of money not having to shell out for generic gift sets for his side of the family.

"Lavender talc? That’ll do his nana…again."

4. You don’t have to sit through charades with your boyfriend’s uncle who constantly calls you by his ex-girlfriend’s name.

"No, don’t worry! Laura…Áine… sorry, they’re really similar."

5. You don’t have to prime your family on all the ‘Not To Be Discussed’ topics before he calls around.

"No, you can’t laugh at what happened in Ayia Napa. He doesn’t even know you know."

Seriously, is that stress-fest worth it just for a New Year's Eve kiss?

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Shifting a co-worker at the office Christmas party might seem like one of the biggest clichés going, new research has shown that it could signal the beginning of a long and meaningful relationship.

Drinks are flowing, the office is closed and for one night a year, all inhibitions go out the window.

Maybe it's that guy from finance you've been eyeing up since he told you your hair looked nice one day, or perhaps all that wine will make you see you work husband/wife in a whole new light – either way, it's pretty likely you'll fall into someone's arms at the end of the night.

In fact, according to a recent study conducted by Instantprint, almost half of all office workers will have some kind of work related romance this festive season.

What's more, 53 percent of those who end up sharing a sneaky shift will end up being in long-term relationships, with one-third of those couples staying together for over a year.

The study also shows that those who work in HR are the most nervous about going to work the day after the Christmas party – though they were also shown to be the ones most likely to get “embarrassingly drunk,” so we're guessing that those go hand-in-hand, really.

Oh, and if you are looking for love this festive season, set your sight on that ride in IT – apparently they're the most likely to kiss someone.

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We've all been there.

As a young, free singleton you promised yourself you'd never use pet names for your future partner – after all, no one wants to be that couple.  

Just hearing your friends refer to their other halves as "babe", "sweetheart" or "honey" was cringey enough to make you swear off romance for the rest of your life, but then all of a sudden, life throws you a curveball and you end up with a "babe" all of your own. 

Slowly but surely the inside jokes and doting nicknames will creep their way into the relationship, and bam – you're just like every loved-up couple you've ever rolled your eyes at. 

So, why does romance turn us all into mushy, baby-talking, doe-eyed softies? 

Well, according to science, it likely stems from our parents.  

“Baby talk is used really extensively, including cross-culturally, by mothers around the world,” Florida State University neuroanthropologist Professor Dean Falk told Broadly.

“It exists for language acquisition in infants, and it also expresses love and facilitates bonding between the mother and the infant."

She believes that couples use pet names for each other because it brings them back to their childhood memories and first love – their mum. 

And while this all might sound a bit Freudian, it's actually one of the most natural ways to bond with a partner. 

So, if you've got a "baby", "chicken" or even a "darling" in your life, chances are you're onto a winner. 

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Christmas is officially one month away! We have yet to start our shopping and the stress of what to buy our other half is weighing us down. Finding the perfect gift for someone is a nightmare but some people have taken the stress out of Christmas by making a deal with their beau. According to new research commissioned by FUJIFILM, over half (53 percent) of women this year are planning not to gift to their partner this Christmas. 

Delving into the insights provided by over 1,000 women in recent weeks, the rationale for not giving to their other half at Christmas can be summarised under three main headings:

  • Money: After purchasing gifts for children and extended family, on top of forking out for the festive food, there is just no cash left to buy for their other half according to 48 percent of participants.

  • Inspiration: What do you buy the person who ‘has everything’ or simply ‘does not need anything’? This was the response of 27 percent of participants who are planning on ditching the Christmas gift for their partner this year.

  • Time: With mums taking on the lion’s share of the Christmas preparations, it’s hardly surprising that 25 percent say that they simply won’t have time to purchase a gift for their other half on top of everything else.

The Christmas countdown is on and while some people (13 percent) will have started ticking off their gift list as early as January this year, not everyone is as organised. However, the common theme amongst this year’s savvy buyers is to shop local, with over 77 percent avoiding online UK purchases for fear of problems getting product guarantees honoured in the future or returning items in the new year due to Brexit. 

Parenting Expert Laura Erskine, has some advice for those of you who put yourself and your partner last on the Christmas list this year:

“Choosing not to buy your other half a gift this Christmas may seem like the easy option this year, especially when done on the basis of a joint pact. However, I would advise parents to think very carefully about what this says about the health of your relationship, and what message this sends your children.”

“When a relationship is under strain, the lack of a gift or indeed a poorly thought out gift tend to take on symbolic proportions where the recipient believes their partner doesn’t care for them as much as they used to. This is particularly true when you witness the giver gift to family members at the same time. Likewise, when your other half nails your gift, irrespective of how much money was spent on it, you tend to feel loved and connected to your mate.”

“You must remember that your children will be watching and take pleasure out of seeing the two most important people in their lives, gift to each other on Christmas morning. Similarly the lack of a gift to one another may cause anxiety or upset around the security of their family unit.”  

Gift giving to your partner at Christmas time is an important part of the celebration and does not have to cost a lot of money, require a huge amount of thought, or take up too much of your time.  The FUJIFILM Imagine mobile app is every parent’s secret weapon to blitz their Christmas list in record time, but with all of the sentiment and none of the hefty expense! 

The photos locked away on our smartphones hold the secret to some really amazing Christmas gifts. Simply choose photos depicting special moments shared between you and your partner, the kids or even the family pet and use them to create personalised presents they will treasure forever. You can order through the FUJIFILM Imagine mobile app, online, and on touch screen kiosks in store nationwide. Choose from personalised photo books, canvas art, phone or tablet covers and much, much more. Then, wrap it all up with personalised gift-wrapping paper to really bring a smile to their faces this festive season.

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Ansel Elgort has opened up about his relationship with ballerina, Violetta Komyshan.

The couple have been together since 2012, but the actor stressed that he hopes to have a non-sexual open relationship in the future.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The Goldfinch star spoke to The Times about wanting more platonic love in his life, despite being in a steady relationship with Violetta.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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 “I’d also like to find a lot more love. It doesn’t need to be sexual. I could be done sexually with my girlfriend.

"I think we’ve been pretty clear that I want to feel free to fall in love with people and that [option] should be open, but sexually it can be closed off.”

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The Fault In Our Stars actor said he loves a number of his male friends, “I’m in love with a bunch of my male friends who I’m not interested in having sex with, so why can’t I put the desire to have sex with women aside and let myself have love with women?”

Speaking of his co-star, Shailene Woodley, he said, “I love Shailene Woodley and we never had anything sexual and that was great. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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“There will probably be some sort of chemical thing at some point that you can’t help, but you just have to be disciplined and not be a f******…We’re primitive beings.”

The Goldfinch is now in cinemas.

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