Thursday, November 28, 2013

Define Cheating

Most women emphatically exclaim they won’t tolerate cheating, but then go on to engage in behaviors that look like cheating to others. Women will rationalize cheating if they want to do it. I am sure men do this too, but I‘ve never heard their excuses. Some women think it is perfectly okay to dine with a male friend while their husband or boyfriend is out of town. Others consider it not cheating as long as they stop short of intercourse. Really?

The Cheating Ladder
1.       Would your partner consider it cheating? Are you dressing up for the new guy in the office who always comments on your legs? Are you lunching with an old lover? Think how would you feel if your man did the same thing.

2.       Have you suddenly become secretive? Have you changed the password on your Facebook or  phone, so that you’re the only one who can log in? What’s up with that?

3.       Are you fantasying about the next step? You’ve glammed up for the new guy at work and you're sending each other flirty texts. What’s next?

4.       Do you wait to share tidbits of information with your ‘new’ friend because only he will understand it? Do you long to be together when you’re not?

5.       How would you feel if your sweetheart did the same thing? It’s not unusual for people to find an attached person attractive. It’s how they react to that attraction is what matters.

6.       What’s behind all this secretive behavior and flirty texts? Why bother? Unless you think you can keep both guys.

Both men and women rationalize cheating behavior by saying things aren’t as hot at home as they used to be. Of course, they aren’t when you’re taking all your best moves and flirting elsewhere. Flirt with the person who actually cares about you.

Think you can juggle the guy at work and the one at home?  Sooner or later, you’ll be the one who’s all alone.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Let's Hear it for the Nerd

There are several types of guys you can date and possibly marry, from the Bad boy to the Momma’s boy. There’s the Older man who is like a father to you as he showers you with gifts. There’s Sporty guy who is always up for a marathon or bike race. There’s Slacker guy you can barely get off the couch. There’s Know It All guy, the less said about him the better. Then there’s Nerdy guy. Women are finally realizing what a gem he can be. This usually comes after divorcing Bad boy or Sporty guy.

1.       Sincerity is who the nerd is. He means what he says. His lack of smoothness means he really likes you as opposed to pulling out an old line he’s used on dozens of girls.
2.      He’s intelligent and a hard worker. In other words, he can hold down a good job. This is especially important to women who not only had to tolerate their ex’s job shifts, but supporting the ex through their own jobs.
3.       You are a VIP to him. Nerds actually have manners. Something any men seemed to have lost somewhere. He’ll plan the date, have conversation topics prepared, and will work hard to make sure you’re having a good time.
4.       He’s not stuck in a rut and is open to suggestions. This means you can go to the Thai restaurant you've heard so much about or spend the evening at the casino.
5.       He’s a gentleman. The nerd would prefer a relationship over a one-night stand. This is who they are. It doesn’t mean you won’t run across one who took one of those pickup artist classes, but he’s easy to set back on the gentleman path.
6.       He’s Tech-savvy. It is so much nicer having your own IT guy to go to when you delete an important document. Unlike the guy on the other end of the phone when you call for tech assistance, this man has a driving need to help you. He wants to make you happy.
7.       He’s funny. Not in the funny to make fun of way. Most nerds are unable to take themselves seriously, which results in the ability to laugh at themselves, and life, in general. He may have a quirky sense of humor that spots the absurd everywhere.
8.       He keeps good company. No worries when he’s hanging with the boys. You won’t have to scour up bail money to free your nerdy love.
9.       They are excellent gift givers. They see it as a project and nerds are great at projects.
10.   You can be yourself. Remember those exhausting men where you had to be what they needed you to be? Sometimes it was a hostess, other times arm candy, often an administrative system, the list goes on and on. As for the nerd, he’s happy to let you just be you. J That’s a rare man indeed.
Never overlook the nervous geeky guy. He’s anxious because he wants to make a good impression. He may make a verbal stumble now and then because he hasn’t dated a hundred women.  Your opinion matters to him. He wants to make you happy. Did you have that with your last bad boy or couch potato boyfriend? That’s what I thought.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Carrot Dating

Brandon Wade is in the news again with Carrot Dating. The concept is a simple one. The man dangles an item of worth in front of a woman to get her to go out with him. Depending on the woman, it could be as small as a tank of gas or as large as an exotic vacation for one date.  An actual relationship could bankrupt most men. The general backlash against this dating app is that it sounds like prostitution. Only most hookers don’t charge as much.

This isn’t Wade’s first attempt in dating for money.  He developed a sugar daddy site that paired up older, generous men with sweet young things that wanted to spend daddy’s money. He also made up the site What’s Your Price where men bid on dates with women as if at an auction. Then he had a travel site where generous men purchased travel companions. They used the word linked as opposed to purchased.

One irate woman’s response to Wade’s dating app was that it was just for loser guys who have to purchase women and gold digger females. One man pointed out that it wasn’t that different from traditional dating where the man pays for everything, from the transportation, dinner, and entertainment with an average date running between $60 and $75. If the date expects you to wine and dine her and fill up her car, then things are even pricier.

Keep in mind, carrot dating guarantees nothing. The woman may dislike the man, not render him the affectionate end to the night he thought he was entitled, and probably never see him again unless she needs another tank of gas.  How is this different from holding tickets to a black tie gala, sold out Broadway show, or even prime seats at the Superbowl? There isn’t too much difference.  Thousands of women have gone out once with a man they wouldn’t look at normally to attend a premier event.

In fantasyland, the woman realizes the man is kind of cool and they keep seeing each other. In reality, she tells her girlfriends about all the celebrities she saw when she isn’t ridiculing her date.

One of the problems with carrot dating is that it demeans even those who don’t even participate in it. Women are generalized as unfeeling gold diggers who will jump into anyone’s luxury auto if offered a big enough incentive.  Men are told they don’t matter as a person, only their wallet matters.

Peggy Drexler, Huffington Post Author, added, “By casting men as the chasers and women as the chased, the values and actions encouraged by Carrot Dating promote sexism, violence against women and other gender imbalances that men and women have worked for years to counter.”

Carrot dating has been going on without Brandon Wade’s help.  I can remember expensive social events like the prom when even an unpopular guy could get a date. Most girls didn’t want to miss their own prom and would often go out with whoever asked them.

Single men complain of being used to pick up restaurant tabs for dates who had no interest in them from the get go and used them for a free meal. Texting during the date, trying not to converse, or even boxing up dinner and leaving early are all sure signs of a meal ticket usage.

Dates are a gamble. Everyone hopes to meet someone who will like and maybe love him or her. Does buying your date carrots secure more leverage? Not really, no more than a woman buying an expensive purse or shoes for the date makes the man into a romantic heartthrob. In the end, the woman still has the shoes and purse.

It all depends on what you want. If you want a date with a woman who probably can’t even stand you, but could use the trinket, trip or tank of gas you dangle, then go for it. All you have to lose is your self-esteem and a whole bunch of money.

As for the women, let me warn you that men who resort to such schemes are no winners. You’ll figure this out on your first date. When you try to brush them off, they won’t take it kindly. They’ll consider you owe them or maybe that they own you. They won’t go away easy either. Think twice before you take that particular carrot.  

Friday, November 8, 2013

Does a Career Trump Romance?

In America, women constantly battle to have it all. This usually involves a high-powered career, husband, perfect home, two children, a dog, hobbies, and rock hard abs. Don’t forget girls night out and girl vacations too.  What if you couldn’t have it all? What would you give up?

Start thinking because that is exactly what young Japanese business professionals are doing. They are deciding what their priorities are. In a documentary, I watched on happiness, one young Japanese widow explained that her husband died from overwork. The seemingly healthy man’s heart just stopped. The widow felt like he had worked too much. It isn’t unusual for employees to arrive home between nine and midnight from their long commutes from the city.

A recent article in The Guardian announced that young Japanese have stopped having sex. It is more than that too. A third of the population never expects to marry, and have children. With this in mind, they have no reason to date or have sex.

The young women are well aware that marriage often results in a loss of a career. Japanese employers have no trouble firing married or pregnant women. Once a woman has a child, she has to stay home and care for it since the child will seldom see the other parent.
The men often feel that not only do they not have the time for a marriage or a family, but they do not have enough time to devote to dating and developing a relationship. One man explained that was not being fair to the woman.

According to Huffington Post article, 61% of the single people in Japan are not in a relationship. A third of the 61% have never dated and have no plans to do so in the future. It is not surprising when 36% of the males and 59% of the females have no interest in sex or are even averse to it. People definitely aren’t looking for chemistry.

The men chose not to have a relationship because they felt it was too much work. They felt they had to give up too much to woo a woman. Part of the blame for people not hooking up is virtual girlfriends, courtesy of technology.

The Japanese government is worried about the declining population, unsure how to get people interested in relationships again. They aren’t sure why people lost interest.
In some ways, the young Japanese, which refers to anyone under 40, are practical in their theories. Children cost a lot of money to raise. One man summed it up by explaining he barely made enough to take care of himself.  Women are worried about losing the careers they worked so hard to obtain and in turn eschew dating.

What are your priorities? Do you expect or want to live without a romantic relationship? What if someone told you it was more practical or told you how much money you’d save?

In a thought-provoking exercise I was given ten elements of a having-it-all life. With each turn, I would have to give away something. I ditched community involvement fast, dropped hobbies, friends, even religion and health, but I refused to give up on love and family. Maybe my priorities are much different than the average young single Japanese. Who’s to say which ones are more right? 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

How Important is Honesty in Dating?

This seems like a no-brainer, but is honesty really that important? It’s amusing when I hear people talk about how honest and real people are on social media. They can absolutely trust someone who texts as opposed to actually calling them. I don’t try to dissuade these people because I realize they’ll believe what they want to believe.

There comes a time when this willingness to suspend all disbelief can get you in trouble. A story from China recently demonstrates this very well. An older man who was bored in his marriage posted a photo of a younger friend, made up a name and a profile, including a wife who had recently passed away, and got online. He soon found himself chatting with attractive young women who were sympathetic to the new widower.

On the other side of the computer screen was a married woman who wanted to get some action on the side so she posted a fake photo and profile. After sending intimate emails back and forth, they agreed to meet in a hotel. The woman leaves her house in a rush leaving her last email open. Her husband, who has come home from a business trip early, discovers it, and goes to the same hotel. He finds his wife meeting his own father for a hookup. It is hard to know who was more shocked of the three. The son reacted by assaulting both of them.

How can a person avoid situations like these? The simple solution is not to date while married, which they both did. Let’s take it a little farther. Don’t put up profile photos of other people and claim they’re yours. When your date does arrive, he or she will feel tricked. This is never a good way to start a date.

 I’ve had people say they couldn’t put up photos because of security reasons, or that they’re in the service or the military. That’s another way of saying married.

It is easy to see that the two got themselves in trouble by using fake profiles, names, and photos. I’ve had issues, as has my sweetie, with stalking by people you didn’t want to date. This happens because we share too much information via our online profile or on the initial date. This makes me wonder how much should we share.

Keep in mind, I am talking about sharing, not lying. Most profiles may have a cute tagline to get someone interested, although most people will use their middle name or nickname. They never ever should use their last name. When meeting people, you do not have to reveal your last name, where you work, or where you live.  There is a good chance the date won’t work out. You might need go out three times before you decide it is a no-go.

With this in mind, do you want a recent 1st date waiting in your work parking lot to question you why you won’t go out with him? Probably not. By not blabbing your life story on the first date, you appear more polished and interesting.

We are the keeper of our own secrets. By this, I mean you aren’t obligated to reveal all on the first date, and I would advise against it. Dating is about getting to know someone. You may give out all you know leaving no reason for a second date. Your sudden eruption of information may earn you a label of being pitiful and needy.

On the other hand, if you insist on being all cloak and dagger, then you just might find yourself meeting your old boyfriend, the one you hoped never to see still breathing, for a date. Dating is a calculated risk. Sure, your ex might know you’re dating. It is better than the alternative of remaining at home, dateless, pining for the ex.

 As for the other people’s online profiles, read them with a discerning eye. If it sounds too good or too romantic to be true, then it probably is.  If the profile sounds ordinary, you might have a real deal.

People lie in person, just not online. How do you know if you are being played? Look for inconsistencies. This usually takes more than one conversation or date to spot. Ask about what you have questions about.

 I asked one man if he owned the plane he stood in front of in his profile photo and he confessed he didn’t. I asked another question; had he spontaneously kissed an unknown woman in an airport as stated on his profile? He hadn’t. They both admitted they were trying to look more interesting via their profiles.

In the end, they came off as dishonest. I am sure I wasn’t the only woman to ask. In dating, you don’t have to reveal all, but make sure what you to do tell is actually about you, not the you that you are aspiring to be.  Yes, I had that happen once, but ironically, I had read the same book he decided to base his life on.