In 1998, I was 7 months pregnant with my second child. My daughter was 2 years old. My husband was working 100 hours a week, coming home and pretty much falling asleep until he left early the next morning for his next 36 hour shift as a Family Medicine intern at the University of Massachusetts.
We had recently moved and I didn’t really know anyone in the area yet. I knew where the local park was and I knew where my backyard was, and otherwise I was in my kitchen, doing laundry, putting my daughter in bed for a nap, or figuring out my future career moves.
I remember once during this time that I finally had some time alone with my husband.
I had about 3 weeks worth of important stuff stored up in my soul, and I needed to express myself to him. I began sharing and a few minutes later, he drifted off to sleep! I am not proud of this, but when I watched his lids slowly drop, then hover… until they closed all the way, I screamed at him.
I was desperate for connection and took his fatigue personally.
Because I am a doctor too, I knew better—indeed, the pressures and impossibilities of his situation were totally familiar to me. But in that moment none of that mattered to me.
SO, what did I do in the face of this experience, with my ballooning belly, my toddler, and my usually unavailable husband? I looked through the self-help aisle of our local bookstore for titles aimed at couples and bought the most promising one. And I told my husband outside of sleep and keeping us safe and tending our family’s needs, reading this book was the most important thing in the world to me.
Every night that he was both off work and actually awake, we read a chapter aloud and then did the exercise at the end of the chapter. Some of the exercises were super confronting for us, and some were really fun. Every single one was valuable and had a positive impact in how I felt about myself, how I experienced him, and how we interacted with one another.
That could have been one of the hardest times in our marriage.That could have been a time when each of us felt alone within our togetherness.
That could have been a time that we each just chose to get through as best we could, knowing better times were ahead.
That experience inspired me.
It inspired me to write Uncompromising Intimacy which contains impactful exercises at the end of each chapter.
And it inspired me to create Date Nights at Home.
When you participate, I will personally guide you and your honey through experiences that will open your hearts, support you in being vulnerable with one another, and encourage playfulness and flirtation.
You are going to be home with one another anyway, so use the time to craft the relationship you really want!
If you want to reap the rewards of feeling cherished and have more fun (from the comfort of your own home) press reply and tell me you want an invitation.
I am gifting 100 couples the opportunity to participate. If you want to be one of them, press reply and ask for the details.
With pleasure and purpose,
How are you doing?
How is your health? Your family? Your heart and soul? Please, comment below or email me and let me know.
My family is well. I am home with my two younger children and my older two (in college, and in grad school) are together in the middle of the country. I am using this time to slow down and connect with all my children the way I used to when they were little.
My attention is also on my relationships.
Being at home with your partner, if it’s not your usual way of life, tends to go one of two ways for most couples. For some it’s a wonderful opportunity to spend time together, to enjoy one another’s company, to savor being able to let go of the busyness of life and slow down with their partner.
For others, it’s really hard. No more welcome distractions in the form of work and other activities away from one another.
Once the quarantine was lifted in China, the divorce rate spiked. This has happened with each of the natural disasters in recent decades which caused couples to be isolated in their homes.
Having a fantastic relationship is a learnable skill.
It’s part trial and error and part learning from others, with the natural benefits of maturity thrown in. The key is having a growth mindset and seeking out inspiration and instruction.
To that end, I am really excited to offer couples guidance on how to use this time to create more connection and more fun. I am tweaking the details but this much is certain:
- I will show you how to use the time at home to clear your resentments, reignite the spark, and co-create an even better passionate partnership.
- All the details are in my new Facebook group “Relationship Reset”
- It will be FREE
Join me here. I can’t wait to see the magic you will make!
With pleasure and purpose,
Intimacy. Sex. Communication. Juicy relationships.
If you read my weekly emails, you know those are the topics I write on and care deeply about.
You may not know that I have four children and am in my 10th year of homeschooling. My older two went to school through 3rd and 5th grades, and I have been homeschooling ever since. First in Massachusetts, then Kansas, and now California.
Across the country, parents are thrown into a crazy situation—having to home-school with no preparation, no idea where to begin, and no real desire to do so.
To serve all of you in this situation I wrote What To Do With Your Kids When Schools Are Cancelled.
The response has been amazing, including a reporter from Fox News NYC reaching out and interviewing me this morning.
I feel for everyone thrown into this and quickly developed a very accessible program to support you. It’s called Calm In Chaos—Thriving Amidst School Closures.
Join me in Calm in Chaos if you want to:
- Enjoy your children more
- Find inner calm in this chaotic time
- Feel sane and get some time for yourself
- Improve your relationship with your partner and other family members
- Have a sense of progress and accomplishment despite the rest of the world feeling like it’s at a standstill
If this isn’t something for you, please forward it to others who would welcome some support as they figure out how to homeschool. The course is just $27 and runs through the end of the school year!
And, whatever you do in these challenging times, take the opportunity to snuggle up with your people and tell them how much you love them.
With pleasure and purpose,
Intimacy…what do you think of when you hear that word? Do you want more of it?
There are lots of ways to experience more intimacy—through the bonding that comes from having a meaningful experience with other(s). It might be a fun leisure activity, or collaborating on a project at work. Either way, it is considered experiential intimacy.
Sometime intimacy comes from connecting deeply on thoughts and ideas, especially when there is the quality of engagement where both agreements and disagreements further the conversation. This is known as intellectual intimacy.
Emotional intimacy is when people are comfortable sharing their deepest feelings with one another—even when sharing them is uncomfortable and requires courage.
Physical or sexual intimacy comes with sharing your body with someone else and receiving their body with love, interest, and erotic delight. Many times people use the word “intimacy” and are referring to this flavor. Other times it’s much more ambiguous. I personally love the word “intimacy” because it’s such an umbrella term and people can respond to the element in it that serves them best.
The more intimacy (of any/all types) you have, the more fulfilling your life is.
The best way to have more intimacy, is to share more of yourself. This doesn’t mean talking more or saying anything specific. It’s much more about the quality of what you share, and how you share it. A small bit of information shared with vulnerability and an open heart creates a lot more intimacy than sharing the most influential details in your life in a detached manner.
The key is not just sharing information, or doing a particular activity together. The key is sharing more of who you are and being open to feel the other person.
The amount of intimacy you experience in your life comes down to how expressed you are.
If you hold back who you are—whether it’s due to your own discomfort in sharing, or you feel that bringing more of your will overwhelm another, or any other reason you have—intimacy will elude you.
If you courageously and carefully open your heart, share gently with real vulnerability and authentic presence, you will invariably have more intimacy in your life.
If you do so with your partner, you are likely to have more of every kind of intimacy!
If you aren’t sure how to be more expressed, let’s dialogue about it.
Whom do you want to feel more intimate with?
What’s holding you back?
You can comment below, or click here to send me an email. I would love to connect.
With pleasure and purpose,
This week is my 24th wedding anniversary, and the most astonishing thing about that is how much has changed.
First of all, there are all the people who were at our wedding who are no longer alive–both of my parents, grandparents, other relatives, a dear friend. So when I think of our wedding they come to mind and I am so very grateful they were alive to celebrate with us then.
And the next thing that comes to mind is how much happier and more in love we are now than we are then.
We were as in love as we could be. Neither of us had any doubt about whether the other one was our person.
But we also had so much doubt about our ability to create a future with one another that we could love. That would bring us fulfillment and companionship and adventure. We didn’t know anyone who had achieved it and that’s why we didn’t dare assume we would.
However, what we did know, was that our marriage would require intentionality, consistent care, and a willingness to grow as each of us and our lives evolved.
There was a time when everything looked good. Our family was well attended to, our careers where strong, and life seemed good.
Except that we lacked passion. We lacked toe-curling ecstasy and moments of deep, blissful, simple intimacy. We both knew we were not fully expressed with one another, and after years of assuming we would eventually get there, each of us wondered if that was an illusion.
I remember the conversation when we dared to say to one another, “I love you, and I love our life together, and I have always assumed it would become more passionate. But this many years in…it seems illogical to keep assuming that.“
Having the courage to share this kind of truth was very confronting, awkward, scary.
Having done so, paved the way to prioritize it and evolve.
We began by buying a book and reading it together, doing each exercise at the end of each chapter. From there we understood our next steps and participated in personal growth workshops, did trainings, and worked with a coach. Really, the rest is history because our relationship now is infused with passion, authenticity, honesty, and hope….so much hope!
Reading that book was the turning point for us. It is precisely what has led us to now be more in love and nourished than we were 24 years ago. It is also one of the main inspirations for my book, “Uncompromising Intimacy”.
I wrote it for you. I wrote it to give you the blueprint for a rich, dynamic, passionate, intimate relationship. I combined stories of couples I have coached, my own story, research, and honest sharing from the front lines where fantastic relationships are created. It’s written like a love letter to you–easy to read and with lots of practical actionable tips and tools.
Dr Kseniya Gershberg, a chiropractor and doula for moms and babies, bought a copy last week. She told me she had lots of books to read and it would probably take weeks or months before she got to mine. However, the very next day she posted this on Instagram and Facebook:
“I met Dr. Alexandra Stockwell and was so excited to grab her book. If you know me pretty well, you know that I love books but with two littles I only get to read a chapter of each new book on my nightstand if I’m lucky. I could NOT stop reading this book. It is filled with guidance and pearls of wisdom for relationships. She shares the secrets on how to create the passion and keep the communication open between partners. She teaches you how to nourish your relationship with your partner even in the hardest moments. After each chapter, she keeps you involved and asks you questions to think about. This is a MUST read for all moms in whatever phase of motherhood you are in!”
If you want clear instructions on “how to nourish your relationship with your partner even in the hardest moments”, read “Uncompromising Intimacy“.
I dream of a world where every couple can feel more in love with each passing year and celebrate their 24th anniversary with more joy and more gusto than they shared on their wedding day. (Definitely a smaller affair…I am talking about the feelings underneath.)
Do you have that kind of relationship? Do you want that kind of relationship? If so, comment below or email me and let’s talk.
With pleasure and purpose,
Next Monday is my husband and my 24th anniversary. It has us sparkly, extra flirtatious, and also opening to whatever is next in our ever evolving relationship.
In honor of our upcoming anniversary, I actually want to tell you about another couple, because they are the only other couple I know who were as explicit as we were in deciding the basis of their relationship prior to getting married.
When Rodd and I got together, we were very clear that the most important thing for each of us, in our relationship, is personal growth. All of our moment to moment choices, and our big decisions, are based in wanting to support one another’s and our own growth. Of course, other things influence us and we have needed to revisit some things along the way.
But overall, this has been the guiding light and the rock solid foundation that solidifies our bond.
Recently, I had the pleasant surprise of speaking with a woman who did something similar. She and her husband of 8 years consciously articulated the foundation of their relationship before they were married.
Their vision and commitment includes a few things.
One of them is that they both are creative and expressive in ways which nourish their souls. She is a playwright and published author. He journals and sometimes makes collages from his writing.
A few years into their marriage, she was working for a hedge fund in New York City. It was a very good job. She liked the people, and gained a lot of skills. She was well compensated and her boss was grooming her for a promotion.
A few weeks before the promotion was to be given, this woman’s husband said he had something really important to tell her. He felt concerned.
As the promotion decision approached, she was working longer hours and more consumed by her career aspirations. He hadn’t seen her write in 6 months.
She looked up, kind of surprised by what he was saying. Simultaneously she knew it was true.
Her husband said living this way went against the foundation of their marriage.
If she wanted to focus on a career in finance, at least how she was doing it, it meant that she was turning away from her writing and creative expression. This had consequences for her.
It also had consequences for him, and for their relationship.
He noticed their interactions were more serious and she was more stressed than she had been.
If she wanted to revise the agreements they had made before their wedding, he was open to it. But he certainly wasn’t going to stand by while this happened without saying anything.
I LOVE this story. Because having a clear foundation for your relationship is essential.
It functions like a North Star, inspiring you no matter the terrain you are in at any given moment.
When this woman heard what he said, she lit up. She was ecstatic, and grateful he was taking such a stand for her, and for them.
Soon after, she quite the hedge fund job, got another job to pay the bills, and started working on her play… with gusto.
That play was performed last month and it was fantastic.
More importantly, to me, their relationship is on fire—full of passion, and deep soulful connection. You can feel it when you are around them, not quite sure what it is but knowing it is wonderful.
Well, what’s wonderful is the clarity of vision they share. And it will serve them forever.
Does this pique your interest? Consider checking out my free guidelines for creating your Vision for Conscious Partnership here.
You can create your Vision for Conscious Partnership when you first get together, and you can do this after 30 years of marriage… it’s a living document and it’s always worthwhile to re-evaluate and upgrade as needed.
Do you want some support in making this happen? I would love to guide you in successfully creating a vision which both of you are excited by, comment below or email me and let’s discuss it!
With pleasure and purpose,