Friday, May 20, 2011

While the Man is a Away, will the Woman Play?

Recently I was confronted with this scenario from a female friend: “I have been dating a guy for a few weeks now, and he is going to Bachelor Party in Vegas… how should I act in this situation?”

Situations such as these offer a good “test” for any relationship new or old. Now I am not one that condones playing games in any type of relationship, but a trip such as this one is a good barometer to measure trust and to see where you each stand in the relationship. Too much interaction while he is away could come off as needy, possessive, “crazy”, and/or high maintenance and too little communication could come off as not interested, apathetic, and/or rude. What is the fine line to walk?

Remember, the goal of your actions is to determine if he is “The Catch” and here is how it is done. The day he leaves make sure you wish him well and to have a great time on his trip. Even though you may not want him going away, let alone on a Bachelor Party to Vegas, you have to hold back these feelings and play it cool. Remember, you are going to want to have a Girls Night Out too. Most likely, he will ask you what your plans are for the weekend. As much as he would like to hear that you don’t plan on doing much and are going to sit at home watching American Idol re-runs, you should be truthful with your plans to the extent that they will not be upstaging his. What I mean is, if you do coincidentally plan a weekend out with girls, keep the explanation very simple, dinner and drinks.

After wishing him “good times”, allow him to initiate the next contact. I know it may seem thoughtful and considerate to text “Hope you landed safely J” or “Get there OK?”, but this is HIS time away from the relationship and reading a text or listening to a voicemail right when he lands may come off as clingy. With this being HIS time away, you want to show you are able to handle distance away from each other. As much as you may have to constrain yourself from sending the initial communication, you must not! Remember we are trying to determine if he is “The Catch”, not if you are. By him making the initial communication, it will illustrate to you that he is thinking about while off in a far away land, even if it is a “check-in” call, still he is thinking about you. Additionally, the later in the evening the call happens, the better because he most likely has been consuming some beverages, he is lonely, and he is thinking of YOU.

If you are in the unfortunate position of not receiving a phone call all weekend, and you cannot contain yourself anymore, send off a simple message to him on final day of the trip asking how he is doing. Keeping it simple and sweet is the best way to go in an attempt to salvage the relationship. In the end, don’t jump to any conclusion and remember…Distance does make the heart grow fonder.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Next Move

Gone are the days where we anxiously go behind the portables in middle school to kiss our significant other so no one else can see. Actions such as kissing behind the portables were done to mask an 11 year olds insecurity about dating a certain kid in school, so no one else could find out. Eventually later that week, the whole school would find out and your supposed stealth like actions have blown up in your face. Nonetheless, you would think many of us would “grow up” from such juvenile actions. Perhaps, but it seems these adolescent actions were just signs to come of our behavior as adults.

Recently, a girlfriend asked me: “This guy and I have been dating for a couple of months, and I don’t know where we stand. He tells me he doesn’t like labels, but it makes me feel insecure not knowing where we stand. What should I do?”

From these comments and questions, a few things jump out at me instantly. First, she clearly likes the guy and wants to move forward to a real, bona fide relationship. Once you reach your mid 20’s, man or woman, and you have been consistently seeing the same person for a few months you must like something (this something is used very loosely) enough about the person to want to continue to see them. If you didn’t you would avoid calls and/or encounters with the person (we have all done it). Second, he clearly is trying to have his cake and eat too. By not accepting to be labeled he either is afraid of true commitment or is leaving himself an out when his first indiscretion (use your imagination here) is discovered. Third, the outside pressure (friends, family, society) are beginning to weigh in on her of where she stands with the guy.

How can she release herself from the many doubts and questions, so that she may be free either mentally and/or physically from the locks and chains of this guy? A few approaches to consider with varying levels of risk:

1. Up Front and Personal- This approach is by far the scariest one to consider. In doing so, you put yourself completely out there. Face to face, woman to man, tell him what you want. The bigger the risk, the bigger reward; however, such risk could yield the most hurt as well. If such up front behavior is uncharacteristic of you, be prepared for the guy to be taken back by such actions. He may need some time to take it all in, the amount of time you are willing to give him depends on you, but remember don’t hold too long. By putting yourself out there, if he doesn’t get the picture it’s time to move on.

2. Become the Chase Again- I am not one to advocate “playing games” in a relationship, but since you do not have a “relationship” (according to Facebook) just yet, sometimes games are necessary. This approach is nowhere near as bold as the former, but will produce very similar results. As hard as it may seem disinterested (i.e. reduce the number of sexual encounters) in your guy, you must begin to slowly detach yourself from him. Hopefully, he will begin to realize what is going on, and begin his courting ways again.

3. Middle School Games- You can always revert to, and this most undoubtedly is where it all begins, is talk amongst your friends and mutual friends. By asking around of what he is saying about the relationship you most likely are not getting a true picture of where he stands on the topic, and by continuing this behavior you will ultimately create more problems than solve.

Friday, April 15, 2011

R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Find Out What It Really Means To Me

Recently, I was approached by a friend to help build back up what she so terribly lost on the first night—Respect. Apparently, she met a guy, planned a night to hang out, an extra shot here, and extra glass of wine there, and things turned lustful. Not completely realizing all of her actions until late the next day, she realized she cemented herself in his mind as a “fling”. A girl not to be taken seriously and was glad to have her fun, but long-term prospects—not a chance.

The questions presented to me included, but are not limited to: How does she redeem herself? Is there any chance of it? How does she go about it?

First things first, ALL IS NOT LOST! Just because you slept with a guy on the first night does not mean you lost out on all chance of a real, lasting relationship; your chances are still better than winning the Lottery. Believe this, a level of respect begins to rise slowly the longer you “hold out”. Now, since “holding out” is not in your deck of cards to artfully utilize to see if the guy is a legit, potential partner, your focus must center around earning back your respect. Chances are slim, but I am saying there is a chance (see Jim Carey- Dumb and Dumber). How is this accomplished? Here is a simple three step approach.

Step 1

Since you are the one trying to build back your respect, YOU need to make the initial efforts to make plans to see each other. No need to turn into a stalker ( but, when deciding on what to do and where to go, do not not venture to the same or similar place(s) which created the predicament you are trying to get out of. For most of us, this will mean avoiding places that center around alcohol. Remember, you actually think there is a chance this guy is “The Catch”, so since you already have experienced his physical gifts and/or flaws, it’s time to get to what spins the wheel upstairs.

Step 2

NO SEX for 3 weeks. That’s right, no sex!! Why three weeks? Since you have only hung out with this guy a few times (1 or 2 nights… trying to be sympathetic here) you need to make him work for what he thinks he can have so easily. That way, you will be able to get a clear understanding of his immediate intentions. If he is sticking around, unlike Winnie the Pooh, he may want more than some honey J.

Step 3

If he is still in the picture around Day 10, buy him a gift. Men are often compared to dogs, and so, like dogs they need to be rewarded for their good behavior. At this point, he will have many questions going on in his head regarding what direction to take things (the proverbial fork in the road). He could cut his losses and seek new excitement or slowly be induced by your seductive ways. A small, tangible gift (should be an accessory to something he enjoys using) will not only reinvigorate his interest in you, it will demonstrate there is more to you then a sweet piece of ass!

Good luck reeling him back in. Please post questions and comments.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Trust: What Exactly Is It?

Trust: What Exactly Is It?

Trust- -the backbone, the centerpiece, the rock of a lasting relationship…or so they say. defines it as “reliance, on the integrity, strength, ability of a person”. Objectively, this is a characteristic an ideal partner will possess, but subjectively trust can take many shapes and forms.

Every day we each encounter situations that we choose to keep to ourselves or to share with others. From someone groping you in a nightclub, to a flirtatious conversation with a co-worker, to a lunch date with an ex-boyfriend/girlfriend, most of the time these occurrences are trivial and quickly become a thing of the past. Is trust defined as to what you believe you should and should not tell your partner because of the trust you two have amongst each other in deciding what should and should not be kept from one another or is the ability to unconditionally share every little nuance of your day with one another?

For instance, if we know an incident will upset our partner, is it better to keep it to oneself or to disclose the event? On one hand, withholding the news would keep the waters calm in the relationship, at least for the time being. Many may go back and forth on the decision on whether to open the flood gates on a potentially volatile outcome.

On the other hand, disclosure will demonstrate you believe the relationship can withstand the strong currents at the present time and in the future. Initially, such candor may not yield the reaction you would like from your partner, but you feel that you “did the right thing” by disclosing the incident to prevent a future tidal wave.

Inevitably, a totality of the circumstances analysis is implicated to determine whether such news is worthy of upsetting the calm waters. Regardless, however which way you choose, disclosure or non-disclosure, such trust in the decision to determine what should and should not be kept from your partner, will ultimately rely upon the level of trust you subjectively believe you have amongst each other in order to prevent the tsunami from occurring.

What is your definition of trust?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Hook, Line, and…Sinker?

Hook, Line, and…Sinker?

Those new and old to the dating world delve into a mysterious abyss each time they interact with a new fish. For those of you that are new, feelings such as anxiety, apprehension, curiosity, and maybe even fear fill your head. And for those of us with experience, such feelings may also resonate; however, they may be confronted and tackled much more easily. In today’s society, dating involves a diverse mixture of couples enjoying their day/night out together. Differences can range from race, cultural upbringings, politics, social classes, and fashion trends. Similar to fishing, different tactics and methods are used to lure in “the catch”. Nevertheless, all players (no pun intended) involved in the dating game (fishing) all understand one common language- numbers. To some, the most unattainable number is 1, but to others the more the merrier, or so they think.

What’s the hook? The physical you is the hook. How you present yourself to others is the bait that attaches to each hook. When you go fishing, what is it that stimulates the fish to take interest? It’s the bait, and bait attaches to a hook. The type of fish you intend to catch all depends on the kind of bait you attach to the end of your hook. In a dry spell and looking to catch an easy fish, then your bait does not have to be as appetizing. Looking to snag a prize catch (one that you can brag and show to your friends), one better be attaching more than just a few worms.

Casting the line is the most decisive move when fishing. When casting your line many factors must be taken into consideration. First, be sure to attach the proper amount and qualities of bait to your hook for the intended fish you want. Now concentration must be focused on how strong to cast your line. Too strong and you may scare the fish away, and too light you may not reach the fish. With that being said the strength of your cast will differ for each fish that you are trying to catch. With the strength of your cast under control, the most strategic question comes into play-how many lines should you cast? The dating world is an unpredictable world to say the least, and it is difficult to know when you are going to get a nibble let a lone a bite, but throwing too many lines out at once could lead you into a whirlpool of trouble. Many may throw multiple lines out in their effort to find the “prize catch”, but be wary as schools of fish are known to talk amongst one another.

With both your hook set with bait and your line cast, all the pressure is on the sinker to navigate the line at the proper speed through these unchartered waters. Move too fast and the fish may get intimidated by your aggressive style, and too slow the fish may lose interest wondering why the line is floundering. But, moving at the right speed with bait firmly attached and line properly casted you will have any fish you desire-hook, line, and sinker!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Keep Stressing Out or Call Him Out?

In response to: this whole story is so complex, its like a years worth of drama and bullshit...(please bear with)essentially, this guy cannot commit to me, despite that we have been "toghether" (on and off) for a year and a half. Now, that he has graduated and living in another city, I thought I could move on, but he keeps popping back in my life. I can't even date other people because I am stuck on the prospect that there is still something between us. We still talk to eachotehr all the time, but only see eachother occasionaly (basically whenever he is town for gameday). But I do not know if he is feeding me lines or not. Is he just lonely because he is by himself and living in the real world? I dont know if he loves me or if he is selfish and does not me to be with someone else. Be brutally honest...

Brutal honesty is my forte'. Before I get into your two options (one option I see much stronger than the other, Option B), let me provide you with his rationale: CONVENIENCE!! From your story, I am presuming you are still in college stressing over tests, searching for jobs in a down economy, and then compile that with drama (that you are allowing to happen) to stress you out even more. So, in college you two were off and on. Right off the bat and from the tone of your message, this indicates to me "commitment"issues on his end or both throughout the relationship. Now that he is in another city, life has just become that much more easier for him. He can get by with "keeping you around" by various texts and phone calls to make it appear that he is still into you, but let's be serious here, he is having his cake and eating it to (remember the dumb sophmore in high school whose boyfriend went to college and she thought they were still "together"...with all due respect, you may be the dumb sophmore). He is living it up wherever he is, and when he comes back in town for gamedays (I am assuming you are in a college football town) he knows he has easy action waiting for him. I even bet his calls or text begin to increase as the days get closer.

Option A- It seems that you have developed some serious feelings for this guy. Let's face it you have kept him in your life for over a year and half, there has to be something about him you find intriguing. If you really do believe you see a future with this guy and could consider him a potential "life partner" you need to call him out on his sh*t. This means completely putting yourself out there and telling him how you feel. I know it's asking a lot out of you to do, but it is the only way to really know where you stand. If this approach is something new to you, take some time to collect your thoughts and really assess the situation, and if you do choose this option do it in person, if not over the phone. DO NOT TEXT...DO NOT TEXT. In perosn is the best because you will have had time to prepare, and you will get to see his reaction and body language. If this is not a viable option over the phone will suffice. Texting may complicate things because it hard to determine tone and message. Now, this may be like a brick hitting him over the head so DO NOT panic if he is flustered or cannot give you an answer on the spot. Remember, just as you had time to contemplate this choice, so should he, and the same courtesy should be given. Once again, I am strong believer in living life with no regrets, and believe me this option will leave you with none.

Option B- If you do not believe you can see yourself with this guy down the road and/or taking on Option A full on, then the only way for you to move on is a combination of two things. (1) you MUST cut off all communications with the guy, AND (2) time. By cutting off all communications with the guy until you moved on you are giving yourself an opportunity to move on and meet new people. While at first this may be tough, this cold turkey approach will allow you to explore all of the other options (fish in the sea) out there. Otherwise, everytime you answer a text, or return a call you are giving off the message to him there is still a chance to get some "convenience":) whether its physical, mental, and/or emotional, you have to demonstrate to him that you will no longer play that role in his life. The second element is time. Time is important because as corny as it sounds "time does heal all wounds", and in due time, when you know you are ready you can open up civil communications with the guy, whethere it be through FaceBook or you see him at an event. The concept of "time" will be different for everyone, so do not think there is a window that you must get over someone by, it is different for everyone.

Thank you for posting the first real-life scenario to this blog, and I hope this information will help you. Please feel free to post again and spread the word of this blog if you believe it was beneficial to read my response.

Have a great day!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

If guys are realizing we are catching on why is it that they haven't changed?

In response to : If guys are realizing we are catching on why is it that they haven't changed?

Whose to say that all guys are catching on, I may be one of the few that his to the new game (or at least I like to think that). Nevertheless, guys still want to feel dominant in any action they engage in, most importantly relationships, and a sense of feeling inferior to a woman strikes fear in the heart of any man. Control in all aspects of a relationship is a central component of a guy starting, staying, and maintaining a relationship with a woman. The degree of that control differs from guy to guy. Traditionally the more egomaniacal, the more control as security issues are sure to arise.

These "games" that woman are now attempting to take control over throws a wrench in the traditional gameplay that was once completely owned by men. It will be interesting to see what transpires from it. This "battle" will be a hard fought one, as certain dating traditions have been ingrained in a man's head for decades, (I'm not talking about opening doors and covering the dinner bill) and if women believe men will be so willing as to allow a shift in the balance of power so easily, they are fairly mistaken. However, women do have one card up their sleeve that a man is always on the hunt for, and how they choose to play it can make or break the game.