How do soft addictions such as compulsive use of iPods, Blackberries, cellular telephones, and computer laptops exert their effects on female sexuality and intimacy?

According to my blog at, cell phones and other advances in technology that have been invented to create free time in fact increase workloads and may affect sexual intimacy. It seems like everyone has a cell phone these days, and we often wonder what we did without such conveniences before they were invented. Cell phones, Blackberries, pagers, laptops, and other electronic equipment seem to keep us linked with the office and our work 24/7. But where does it end?

Many men and women have even developed soft additions or become compulsive checkers, unable to control their strong urges to be connected electronically and up to the minute with their e-mail. New medical syndromes are associated with finger and thumb problems as a result of increased typing and texting. Are you suffering from soft addictions to technological devices? The image of partners in bed clicking away on their respective Blackberries while the television drones in the background is not an uncommon bedroom scene. Some even are in the same home but e-mail each other from room to room. Clearly, we all need technology to help in our workday and to keep in touch with colleagues, but have we gone too far?

All these technological activities help to an extent with time management, but the line between regular and compulsive use is a fine one. Many are overusing these devices and taking precious time away from their families and friends. Try

Are you suffering from soft addictions to technological devices?

to turn off every electronic device at a set time every night. (Although your inbox may be filled by morning, the truth is it will probably never be empty, no matter how hard you try.) Set limits on usage and stick to them. Don't cave. Share with your partner, communicate the old-fashioned way: have a discussion, face-to-face. Engage in intimacy in the moment and do not allow yourself to be interrupted. It takes work to overcome bad habits, and as with any addiction you may have a relapse, but if you want sexual intimacy to be a priority, you and your partner need to begin to try to kick the soft addiction habit! Soft addictions can limit intimacy and take away from time spent together as a couple. Limit use of convenience devices to a specific time frame and monitor your time spent on them so that it does not hinder sexual intimacy and interpersonal communication.

What is Tantra and how can it help sexual intimacy?

Tantra[1] is the ancient Indian spiritual tradition and belief system that sexuality is tied to personal energy. Practicing Tantra, according to Tantric experts, can change us if we submit to our primal sexual desires while maintaining control and heightening spiritual awareness. When incorporated into lovemaking, Tantric techniques ultimately intensify the sexual dynamic or consciousness between partners as they fully experience their sensual and sexual energy together. Spiritual connections ensue and partners often relay experiences of sexual energy flowing from one partner to the next. Sexual enhancement, pleasuring, living consciously, and the various postures of lovemaking are important tenets of Tantra. The union of the male and female dimensions, or the yin and yang, expands the dimensions of sexuality. Through the control of orgasms, feelings of intimacy and connectedness with your partner are ultimately enhanced.

In Tantra, the ultimate sexual goal is to reach union on a spiritual plane and become one being. Sex therapy specialists

In Tantra, the ultimate sexual goal is to reach union on a spiritual plane and become one being.

who specialize in Tantra techniques are located in most areas of the United States. Dr. Lana Holstein and Dr. David Taylor offer an excellent sexual intimacy workshop at the Miraval Life in Balance Spa in Arizona. Through lectures and workshops, their program teaches couples to reconnect sexually, thus reclaiming sexual enrichments and satisfaction by exploring sexual pleasure and passion. Further information about their programs is on the Internet ( According to Holstein and Taylor, there are techniques for couples that involve sitting silently face-to-face breathing together while the inner thought process is one of appreciation. Another important exercise is when the woman sits on her partner's lap with her legs wrapped around her partner's back to bring their hearts together, and the couple breathes together or alternately, almost as if each person is "breathing the other." These simple techniques are sensual, invigorating, and stimulating because they create profound intimacy and allow the formation of strong bonding connections between lovers.

Tantric practices can also be much more complicated, utilizing concepts of energy centers in the body, stressing the practices of nonejaculatory orgasms for men, and ejaculatory orgasms for women, as well as prolongation of intercourse with attention to building and ebbing of sexual energy. Tantra for the beginner should focus on intention to reach soulful, spiritual sexual exchange.

Dr. Laura Berman of the Berman Center (Theberman also offers intensive retreats for individuals and couples where the stress of everyday life is left behind and the focus becomes on jump-starting their sexual lives. Therapy, homework, and assignments focus on conflict resolution, increased communication, and other methods like tantra to enhance and reconnect sexually and spiritually.

  • [1] An ancient Indian spiritual tradition and belief system with the premise that sexuality is tied into personal energy and is capable of changing us if we submit to our primal sexual desires while maintaining control and heightening spiritual awareness. Tantra can intensify lovemaking and intensify the sexual dynamic or consciousness between couples.
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