Designer Relationships PDF Book by Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson


Click here to Download Designer Relationships PDF Book by Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson Language English having PDF Size 5.5 MB and No of Pages 185.

We are living in an era of major change in terms of how we practice sex, love, and relationships. Thanks to the Internet, whole communities now exist that honor a variety of nonmonogamous relationship structures—polyamory, swinging, and other alternative arrangements. Finding people and places to explore this wide variety of sexual and romantic options can now be done with ease.

Designer Relationships PDF Book by Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson

Name of Book Designer Relationships
PDF Size 5.5 MB
No of Pages 185
Language English
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About Book – Designer Relationships PDF Book

Something that was hard to imagine a few decades ago. The novel Fifty Shades of Grey has led millions into a consideration of adding kink and BDSM into their intimate repertoire. Marriages have been failing at a high rate for years. Many older people, who find themselves suddenly single, are exposed to a cyber world of online dating.

And a social acceptance of a new sexuality that are light years away from how they grew up. Many younger people, who may have been raised by divorced parents, are actively seeking healthier alternatives. Times are changing. Designer Relationships is a guidebook for these changing times.

Click here to Download Designer Relationships PDF Book

It explores what is now available to anyone with a computer, a modicum of curiosity, and the willingness to take a risk and explore. I was born in the mid-1930s and grew up in the very conservative ’40s and ’50s. My generation was led to believe that our only option was to marry the virginal Prince (or Princess) Charming of the opposite sex, have babies.

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And live in the suburbs with wood-paneled station wagons. It was assumed that our lifelong partners would meet all our sexual, emotional, and practical needs for sixty years and that we would die in each other’s arms still ecstatic in love. These misguided beliefs still hold sway in popular culture.

Designer Relationships incorporates some of Partners in Passion, sometimes restructured and refocused. It also contains new material, and new research. To a significant degree, it is a response to the rapid and dramatic cultural changes that have taken place since 2013. We think of it as a companion piece.

Where Partners is encyclopedic, covering relationships and sexuality throughout the life cycle, Designer Relationships is more narrowly focused on relationship structures and skills, including a critique of the way monogamy is conventionally practiced (but not a critique of monogamy itself) and an exploration of alternative possibilities. Designer Relationships PDF Book

We hope that this book will contribute to a trend that’s already in motion—the increased acceptance of a wide variety of consensual domestic, erotic, and emotional arrangements. We also hope it will help you define and create the domestic, erotic, and emotional relationships that work for you.

When Nena O’Neill, coauthor of Open Marriage, died in 2006, Margalit Fox opined, in her New York Times obituary, that the 1972 book read like “a period piece” with ideas that seemed “quaint” and “naïve.”2 Since that obituary appeared, dozens of books on various forms of open relating have been published.

From new editions of The Ethical Slut and Polyamory to Tristan Taormino’s Opening Up, Christopher Ryan’s Sex at Dawn, Jenny Block’s Open, Elizabeth Sheff’s The Polyamorists Next Door, and Curtis R. Bergstrand and Jennifer Blevins Sinski’s in-depth sociological study Swinging in America. Designer Relationships PDF Book

The notoriously censorious Dr. Drew Pinsky recently acknowledged on The View that polyamory works for some people, and numerous articles on polyamory and other forms of open relating have appeared in mainstream media outlets since Partners in Passion’s publication. As part of this wave of interest, we were interviewed as experts for a segment on Breakthru Radio/FoxDC in April 2014.

The reporter, Sarah Fraser, informed us that approximately forty percent of her New York City “person on the street” subjects thought that open relationships were a valid and viable option, even if not for them personally. At least one of the Fox hosts agreed during the in-studio discussion.3 Eight years after O’Neill’s death, the ideas expressed in Open Marriage seem more seminal than quaint.

The current shift has been influenced by a wide variety of cultural factors. In addition to the growing and politically active polyamory community, the swinging and kink communities appear to be gaining many new adherents. The same goes for human history. Neither social monogamy nor true monogamy was the dominant model until very recently. Designer Relationships PDF Book Download

Even after the development of agriculture, human societies have evidenced a vast array of sexual and social arrangements, few of which have treated lifelong sexual exclusivity between two people as the ideal. In the Western world, monogamy only became the rule during the early Common Era. Jews practiced polygamy until at least 1000 CE in Europe and for considerably longer in other parts of the world.

Christianity did not fully reject it until the early modern period, and some African Catholics have supported it in recent years. First Timothy, an epistle (traditionally ascribed to Saint Paul but probably written by another early Christian) opposes polygamy for church officials but not others, for reasons of efficiency not morality.

Even within the context of medieval and Renaissance Christianity, events like Carnival/Mardi Gras and various other festivals provided a structured and ritualized outlet for extra-pair copulations. During the Reformation, Martin Luther granted exemptions allowing for polygyny (one man and multiple wives. Designer Relationships PDF Book Download

14 Certain Protestant sects, including the Anabaptists, openly practiced polygyny during the sixteenth century, and while it’s disputed, some Protestant elders in Germany may have accepted polygyny involving up to ten wives as late as 1650. In some cases, the feelings of betrayal associated with being cheated on have more to do with emotions than with sex.

And the term emotional affair is used to describe violations of emotionally monogamous relationships. More importantly, we suspect that if sexual monogamy is an unexamined default, people probably give even less thought to what their emotional understandings are and that emotional affairs are usually betrayals of tacit rather than explicit agreements.

In our own lives, even though we’re deeply pair-bonded and think of ourselves as being essentially emotionally monogamous, the limits of that monogamy are flexible and have varied, depending on circumstances. For us, emotional monogamy means drawing the line at attachments that might intrude on our connection with each other. Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

But that has not prevented us from developing attachments and recognizing and acknowledging them. Similarly, couples in the swinging community often develop long-term relationships with other couples, socializing and vacationing together for years and even becoming godparents of each other’s children. Of course, sexually monogamous couples may also develop attachments like these.

Thus, cultural attitudes toward consensual nonmonogamy are many years behind cultural attitudes toward marriage equality. As we’ve already suggested, the stigma against open relating remains strong, and it has been internalized by many who are not monogamous themselves, including millennials.

A recent study conducted at the University of Michigan showed that even those in nonmonogamous partnerships evaluated the relationship of a couple described as monogamous more favorably than that of an otherwise identical couple described as consensually nonmonogamous. Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

The pervasive nature of this stigma illuminates why so many in the swinging community keep their activities secret and why issues related to coming out are frequently discussed within the polyamorous community. We have been mindful of this stigma for years; our primary audience is composed of couples.

So we are acutely aware that it was not in our economic interest to embrace consensual nonmonogamy as a valid choice or to feature interviews with people in thriving designer relationships, as we did in Partners in Passion. Coming out as being in a designer relationship is an important and courageous act.

It’s even more courageous if, unlike us, you have children and are part of a community that would condemn you for your relationship style. Everyone knows that things don’t end when you become a couple, decide to move in together, or get married, but we are all exposed to the “happily ever after” message from childhood on and are conditioned to believe it. Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

The truth is that relationships are dynamic, and even the happiest ones change, evolve, and go through difficult periods. Differences are something to celebrate, but if you’re buying into “happily ever after,” it’s not possible to accept and even embrace the inevitable changes, divergences, and ups and downs. This myth is very closely related to the concept of the soul mate.

Both predate the belief that romantic love is the foundation on which long-term relationships should be built. Both are archetypes that exist in similar forms in many different cultures and appeal to deep-seated human yearnings. And both have increased their grip on the modern psyche, in part because they have been amplified and modified in popular culture.

This is not to deny the fact that limiting oneself to a single partner and remaining sexually exclusive is one way to decrease risk, provided you both are exclusive. At the same time, the only kind of sex that is entirely risk-free is no sex at all. Next on the list is self-pleasuring, followed by total exclusivity between first-time sexual partners. Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

And then total exclusivity between partners who have been thoroughly tested—though in the last two cases there remains a risk of sexually transmitting an infection that can be acquired nonsexually: hepatitis and Lyme disease, for example. For most people, the no-sex option is simply unrealistic. Thus, there is an element of risk in any sexual encounter.

This is true even if you use barriers, since they sometimes fail. Certain infections can be transmitted even when barriers—male or female condoms, dental dams, plastic wrap, and gloves—are used. The term safer sex, as opposed to safe sex, which was current a couple of decades ago, is a way of acknowledging that using protection is not a guarantee.

While some research suggests that children from single parent and broken homes generally fare less well than those raised in more stable environments, this may be more related to economics than family structure per se. Children from wealthier broken homes are more severely affected by divorce than children from less privileged backgrounds. Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

Possibly due to the change in economic status that often accompanies it.62 Wealthy people can afford to subcontract out some of their parenting to nannies, au pairs, etc., so many of the best outcomes actually involve the presence of more than just a mother and father in the household.

In addition, the credible studies on same-sex families suggest that there’s little difference in outcome, and a recent study even indicated that children raised by two mothers do better than those raised by a mother and father. 63 When it comes to multiparent households, there has been very little research on the subject.

But the most recent paper addressing the issue concludes that “monogamy and consensual nonmonogamy provide similar outcomes for children in these types of families.”64 The authors of the study also point out that the benefits and potential problems of nonmonogamous relationships also exist for children in monogamous ones. Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

Elisabeth Sheff makes very similar observations in her study of polyamorous families, The Polyamorists Next Door. It’s up to you to define sexual adventuring for yourselves. Adventuring may or may not include other people; it may or may not include various forms of kinky interactions; it may include things that look entirely “vanilla” to people in alternative sexual communities.

Or it may involve things that would shock your neighbors. It’s about expanding your boundaries together, mutually exploring new sexual possibilities, while respecting each others’ limits, and building intimacy and trust by thinking of each other as comrades on an exciting journey. Deliberately exploring and expanding your sexuality together will place you in situations that are optimal for growth.

When this is done well and intelligently, it can strengthen your partnership and build deeper, more enduring trust, especially since trust is not only built but also earned. Make a mutual decision about how far to go when exploring your fantasies. Are you going to restrict yourselves to role play? Will you include other props or toys? Will you do things that are somewhat bold?  Designer Relationships PDF Book Free

Will you interact with other people? Will you move from the realm of fantasy into the realm of reality and physically act them out (e.g. actually have sex with a stranger)? There are some whose fantasies are primarily about things that they would actually like to do, or have done in the past.

Conversely, there are those who fantasize about things they would never want to do or experience in real life; rape fantasies are probably the most obvious and common example. Many people engage in both types of fantasizing. Skilled fantasy players are able to construct and enact elaborate scenarios that can have the complexity of a theatrical production.

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