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relationships

Look, we all thought that by the age of 25 we would be married and living in a lavish house, spending our Sundays browsing around home stores and buying the expensive candles.

Alas, society shifted on it's arse and most of us are lucky at to have moved out of our parents house and into an overpriced box falsely given the name 'an apartment' before our 25th birthday.

So it comes as no surprise that us millennials are suffering from something that never before existed and that is 'the quarter life crisis'.

When you cop that you haven't lived up to their own expectations by a certain age, it can be crushing.

As this study shows.

More than 1,000 people aged between 23 and 39 were surveyed to see what factors they believed affected their life satisfaction.

It showed that 30 percent of married people who were going through a quarter-life crisis thought that they had settled for their other half. 

Those who blamed the pressure to get hitched in adding to their depressive state made up 17 percent and 16 percent blamed it on the pressure to get pregnant. 

 

And it found out that 2 in 3 people had experienced the quarter life crisis. 

Do you agree?

 

 

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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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Most of us think about sex at least once a day, it's a perfectly natural phenomenon that's an integral aspect of our lives.

Of course, it's important to acknowledge that asexuality exists too, and people with low sex drives for whatever reason, medical or not. So if you're not having erotic fantasies, don't fret.

One question is on our minds at this moment in time: How can we know what generation were the biggest fantasy-addicts of them all, though? That's easy: Science.

masturbating sex and the city GIF

A new study has confirmed that modern women spend THREE TIMES as long dreaming about sex than the women of the 1970s.

The sexual revolution of the late 20th century and falling levels of shame around the taboo of sexuality are thought to be behind the latest spicy trend.

Researchers from the University of Freiburg in Germany asked 2,907 participants aged between 16 and 92-years-old about their sexy-time dreams, and the results are fascinating.

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Women under 30 years of age claimed that one-fifth of their dreams were erotic, while for men in the same age group it was one-quarter.

A previous survey from 50 years ago discovered that women thought about sex during sleep only one-third as much as modern ladies.

The gap between genders has closed over time, which the journal Psychology & Sexuality puts down to the rise of feminism and an awareness of intersexuality, queer culture and communication.

 

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The report stated: "One might speculate that younger women in modern society deal with sexuality more openly that older women of previous generations."

An erotic dream is defined as having "sexually motivated" activity, such as flirting and kissing. The scientists from the University of Freiburg in Germany also found that 83.8 percent of two sexes had experienced a wet dream.

Studies which took place back in 1966 and 1998 found less than four percent of women and 12 percent of men confessed to having sex dreams. Maybe they were just being coy? 

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The research didn't go into the type of sex dreams women were experiencing in the past and present, which would be interesting to dig into.

Dream away gals, it's a healthy part of your lifestyle and is proven to influence the development of your sexual preferences.

You're essentially carrying out important scientific experimentation in your own brain, right?

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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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So, if you've ever dabbled in the world of online dating you'll know that height is a big factor when searching for a partner. 

Most daters feel obliged to share their inches with potential matches, and it seems they may have good reason. 

According to a recent study, couples with the biggest height differences, specially shorter gals and taller guys, actually have the happiest relationships. 

Researchers surveyed 8,000 participants and found that both men and women enjoyed greater relationship satisfaction in a tall/short pairing. 

The results also revealed how taller men are assumed to be more trustworthy and capable by employers, making them more likely to earn raises or promotions.

As with most of our romantic instincts, it seems evolution has a big part to play. Going back to prehistoric times, women were more attracted to taller men as they were seen to be better hunter-gathers. 

“Although it has been known that women prefer tall men in mating for evolutionary reasons, no study has investigated whether a taller husband makes his wife happier. A greater height difference in a couple was positively related to the wife's happiness,” explains Dr Sohn in the Journal Of Personality and Individual Differences. 

However, the study found height is only a factor for the first 18 years of marriage. After 18 years, height doesn't matter.

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Let's imagine for a moment that the annual occasions which help to punctuate our year were comparable to the various elements that help comprise your standard Catholic mass.

Christmas is – no prizes for guesses – the moment the priest tells you to go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

"We did it, lads. We made it. And now there's a roast at home!"

Halloween is the slow walk back to the pew after Communion  – you haven't quite made it to Christmas, but you're almost there.

"Not long to go now, gang. Hold tight."

And Valentine's Day is the moment you're forced to shake hands with everyone around you.

"Jesus, are we still doing this? Sorry… sorry… and also with you."

You understand the sentiment behind it, you know you should probably embrace it, but Jesus Christ, it's awkward, it's unnecessary and it's something you tend to forget about until the bloke next to you shoves a meaty palm in your direction.

There's a common misperception that men are the ones who dismiss Valentine's Day as a moneymaking scam while us women dreamily trail our hands along shelves which are heaving under the weight of doe-eyes teddy bears, just hoping our other half will see fit to present us with one in February.

For Jaysus sake.

There are very few women I know who wouldn't, when presented with a soft toy clutching a satin loveheart, not immediately think "And where am I supposed to put the shaggin' thing?"

Common folklore would also have us believe that the single, ready-to-mingle Pringles among us actively loathe couples on Valentine's Day, but they're not the only ones.

The truth is, couples loathe couples on Valentine's Day.

Couples loathe everything on Valentine's Day, in fact.

The loathe the pressure, they loathe choosing cards, they loathe their attempts at sentimental prose, they loathe the fact they can't get a table at their favourite restaurant, and they really loathe being told that they're lucky they're in a relationship on February 14.

Because, really, what difference does it make? Single or taken, you still end up envying the couples who seem to do it… well… right.

Just picture it — while you're hissing at your other half across the table of your fourth favourite restaurant (pre-covid), your peripheral vision is drawn to a couple behaving exactly how they should be – in love.

While you're muttering that your other half doesn't have the decency to help you into your coat, you notice some bloke practically carrying his girlfriend's handbag.

And while you question your inability to eat without getting it all over yourself, you spot two gobshites practically feeding each other across the table.

Valentine's Day is little more than 24 hours which abruptly throws your relationship into the spotlight, and forces you to acknowledge its various shortcomings while you agonise over everyone else's strengths.

And if you're one of those couples that doesn't hate Valentine's Day, rest assured everyone hates you.

And it's mostly because we're jealous.
 

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Fancied yourself as a star-crossed love? Ever wonder if you and your other half were meant to be?

Well we have the answer right here, from your best traits in love to who you're best matched to, we got you covered! 

Aquarius (January 20- February 19)

A fire sign, to attract an Aquarius you need to be up for some deep conversations. Super loyal and committed, they like to view their other halves as equals and give them the space they deserve. Enter a Leo or a Sagittarius- independent yet intellectual! 

Pisces (February 19- March 20)

You're just a big softie aren't you, you Pisces?! Don't look to to a Pisces for a short fling- they're in it for the long-haul. Deep in their hearts, Pisces-born are incorrigible romantics. They need a strong and stable earth sign, like a Virgo or a Taurus to keep up with them. 

Aries (March 20- April 19)

You know that person that blurts out the 'L' word way to early in a relationship? That's an Aries for you! They love the first rush of knew love, but need a stimulating and complex partner to keep them interested in the long term. Best matches are with a balanced and diplomatic Libra or an equally feisty Leo. 

Taurus (April 20-May 20)

The careful and steady bull, a Taurus is slow to open up- but definitely worth it once they do! Stubborn to the point of infuriating, a Taurus won't back down and will cling on to those they love with dear life. Paired with a confident Scorpio or an emotional Cancer will make for the strongest relationships. 

Gemini (May 21-June 20)

A Gemini will be a talker, so unless you're willing to stay up swapping childhood tales until 3 am then move on. Communication and physical contact are key for a Gemini- and they could even come across as a bit of a flirt. Choosing a partner with the same zest for life, like Aquarius or Sagittarius, is super important. 

Cancer (June 21-July 22)

Cancer's wear their hearts on their sleeves. Gestures are important to Cancers than superficial chat and they love the romance in the little things. A lover of their own space, in the long term a Cancer would much prefer someone that will chill on the couch with Netflix over a wild adventure. They suit equally homely signs like a patient Taurus or a committed Capricorn. 

Leo (July 23- August 22)

Ah Leo, the king of the jungle and ruler of all. They like to be in control of a relationship, it's their way or they highway. But when in love, they are fun, loyal, respectful and very generous towards their loved one. A partner for a Leo needs to be someone that can handle their own and express themselves- such as a Aquarius and Gemini. 

Virgo (August 23- September 22)

Opposites will always attract a Virgo. Logical and reserved, they require a lot of time and patience to get to know. On the outside they are charismatic but they guard their hearts and true feelings closely. They need an partner that's not afraid to say how they really feel, and show them the way to open themselves up to more communication. The work best emotional signs like Pisces and Cancer. 

Libra (September 23- October 22)

Libra's love the idea of 2.5 kids and a white picket fence, but their status as an air sign means that they're flexible. However, this flexibility might mean they give more to a partner than they really should, for a Libra to thrive they need clear communication and boundaries. Matched best with an Aries or Sagittarius, a Libra will provide the stability for these fire signs. 

Scorpio (October 23- November 21)

Oh, hello Scorpio! The most sensual (cough, cough) of all the signs, are passionate about their partners. However quick they adapt to physical relationships, it takes them a bit longer to enter relationships and build trust and respect for their other halves. But once you have it, it's yours for life. They work best with signs like Taurus and Cancer, signs of multiple layers a Scorpio can keep peeling. 

Sagittarius (November 22- December 21)

If you're looking for a merry-go-round of fun than look no further than a Sagittarius! Playful and humorous, to keep a Sagittarius interested you need to keep presenting them with exciting adventures. They love to mix things up so they need a partner, like a Gemini or an Aries, that will hold the map on their spontaneous road trips. 

Capricorn (December 22-January 19)

Capricorns are a tough nut to crack, it can often be years once their walls fully come down. But once you manage to worm your way into a Capricorns heart you're there forever. Not big talkers, they will show how much they care in gestures over words. Romance for a Capricorn looks more like a cleaned house than a bundle of flowers. Their hidden sensitvity matches them best with a steady Taurus or a home-bird like Cancer. 

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If you've ever got freaky in the sheets and accidentally took an elbow to the eye – don't fear, you're not alone.

Though it can absolutely murder the mood and you're left completely mortified, amorous accidents and mishaps are more common than you think. 

So you can stop blushing as 99 percent of participates in a recent Superdrug Online Doctor survey said during sexy sessions, they've experienced some sort of misery in this department.

It may not surprise you that the most common form of misfortune was bumping heads with one's partner – I'll go get the ice.

Out of the 800 people quizzed, 45 percent of men and women said they've taken a tumble out of the bed mid-session – although this could be down to overenthusiasm – take it easy lads. 

Onto some of the weird and wonderful ones, almost 12 percent of women and 8 percent of men accidentally vomited during sex – delightful.

Whilst 13 percents of both sexes reported wetting themselves when getting it on – if this does happen, make sure your mum isn't the one washing the sheets.

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Although it can end in tears or laughter – it seems we aren't too proud of ourselves when it comes to coughing up the truth to our doc.

The survey found that we will lie and create all kinds of tales to avoid telling the doctor that we injured ourselves getting the ride.

But how are we sustaining these accidents? Turns out we are uncoordinated messes – well almost half of us are.

Almost half of women who were surveyed said it was down to their lack of coordination, while 35.5 percent of men blamed the same problem. 

Lack of flexibility came in as second, with a quarter of women saying it was a reason for really awkward sex – so stop trying to push our legs over our head, thanks. 

For men, nearly 20 percent of them said lack of stamina and endurance was the culprit for the cricket silence. 

So do we learn from our mistakes and does awkward sex make us more cautious for future lovemaking marathons? – Yes, my friends, they do. 

29 percent said they avoided 69 standing up position like the plague after a previous failed attempt.

Others were less athletic, but they all shared something in common – penetration from behind.

Doggy style, reverse cowgirl, and the kneeling wheelbarrow each made the top five on the list of banished positions. 

Moving to those sexy locations, while it seems steamy in the movies, if you've ever attempted this in the real world – you know the results are far from the Hollywood glam.

Cue the awkward moments, positions and generally just being uncomfortable AF. 

So it comes as no surprise that 27 percent who got their wings in the mile-high club said they wouldn't repeat the experience – have you seen the size of those loos? Just no.

No one wants to see their neighbours going at it – no matter how hot you think you are and a quarter of people thankfully said they wouldn't get it on in a public patio or back garden again. 

Additionally, cemeteries made the list of awkward locations to avoid, as well as the ocean and the shower.

We don't have a solution to eliminate those "I wish the ground would open and swallow me whole" situations.

But I hope you can relate to these saucy encounters to realise that awkwardness is all apart of life – including sex. 

Let's hope the next time you can get laugh it off and get back at it.

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Getting bored of the same 'ole carry on in the bedroom? It might be time to step outside of your comfort zone and discover the wonders that lay beyond the boudoir. 

New research claims that having sex in places around the house can help boost relationship satisfaction and overall happiness. 

The team at House Method asked 1,000 people about their favourite places to get down to business. 

Results showed that couples who have sex outside the bedroom boast 10.5 per cent greater relationship satisfaction, while 33 per cent were more satisfied with their sex lives. 

Rather unsurprisingly, the living room proved to be the most popular non-bedroom location for couples to get freaky, closely followed by the bathroom.  

Attics, closets and gardens were the least preferred spots, which is hardly surprising, really. 

What's more, it seems that couple who enjoy sex outside the bedroom actually have more sex in general, averaging at 10.9 times a month, compared to just 5.8 times for bedroom-only couples. 

Of course, depending on your living situation, non-bedroom sex isn't always an option. 

All of the people who participated in the survey lived with their significant other – making it 100 times easier to have sex when and where you want to.   

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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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Ah, the world of romance is interesting, especially in your early twenties. 

The motley crew of guys that you cross paths with during these years are an interesting bunch.

And, believe it or not, you learn something from every one of them – even when you think that you didn't. 

So, let's dive in and see what the f*ck we were thinking…

1. The Friend

Okay, let's just get this one out of the way first.

While some people escape their early twenties without having fallen foul to this, then fair play to you.

However, a hell of a lot of us do end up sleeping with a mate because, tbh, you spend a lot of time with them and you guys are MATES i.e have chosen to voluntarily spend time with each other. 

And if they look like Nick from New Girl, then you, my friend, are a goner. 

2. The Ex

This is a risky little one here now.

You finally decide to split up after weeks of shittiness only to end up having sex when you go over to his to get your stuff?

What are you, stupid?

Well, yeah, yeah you are…that's all there really is to this one. 

3. The Hot Bartender 

Even if you haven't got it on with the hot guy throwing cocktails shakers in the air behind the bar, don't EVEN act like you've never wanted to/thought about it. 

I think there's deffo some law somewhere that says that all barmen are immediately hot because they are barmen.

They're usually either shit craic or cheating on their gf's, so I personally wouldn't bother…but you will anyway. 

4. The Please-Can-I-Erase-That-From-My-Mind One

It doesn't have to necessarily be someone you really don't fancy to slot into this category. 

Maybe he was a co-worker and now you've to sit across from him in the Monday morning meeting or he could be a pal of your ex or something.

Best thing – deal with it like a grown up by ignoring it…should work. 

5. The Exotic One

It might happen on hols in a dodgy Portuguese bar, or it could be a Tinder date with a fab Frenchman or you could be backpacking around the world and stumble into the most gorge person from who knows where and fall madly in lust. 

Whatever way you do meet this exotic creature, it'll be memorable because culture-clashing is a real thing. 

And who gives a sh*t if you can't understand a word they're saying when they look so…tanned?

6. The F*ckboy

C'mon – who hasn't crossed over to the Dark Side?

That Side is usually occupied by a guy with a man-bun and a massive ego but we, for some reason, swoon like eejits.

Look, just think of it as a rite of passage and try not to feel too guilty about it. 

7. The ''Ick'' One

Made famous by Olivia Attwood on Love Island, the ''ick'' happens – without warning or reason – in the early stages of seeing someone.

The guy that you thought was cute mere days before has suddenly in your eyes morphed into the most unappealing person EVER and your skin crawls at the thought of being near them.

Harsh, but true. And you will forever associate the ''ick'' with them – soz guys. 

Of course, mixed in there are some amazing guys, fab flings and brilliant boyfriends – so enjoy every minute of it!

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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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