Why Did You Date Him: Hide and Seek

By |February 24th, 2011|Why Did You Date Him?|

It always seems that the people who are looking the hardest for love are the ones without it.  Seems unfair, but I suppose that’s just the way the cookie crumbles.  Maybe it’s because they seem desperate.  Maybe it’s because they are looking so hard they can’t see what’s right in front of their face.  Whatever the case may be, they are unable to find love.

I won’t disclose all the details (I’ll save that for my novel), but let’s just say that I found true love in a very unexpected fashion.  A little over a year ago, I had been coping with the aftermath of a gut wrenching breakup by going out a lot and dating several different boys without the intent of committing to any of them.  I had sworn off marriage altogether and decided that living in a beach shack with my beautiful adopted children and pets would be just fine.

And then a funny thing happened. I needed help with a project and a girlfriend of mine put me in touch with a former colleague who she’d remained friendly with.  From the first email, there was a connection.  I looked forward to each and every one of his email exchanges more than an episode of Gossip Girl.  While they had started as formal and work related, they turned into hilariously quick back and forth banter that I’d never shared with anyone before.  One of my friends called it early on, but I refused to admit that I’d met my match.

I fought it the entire time.  I had four million different reasons why it couldn’t be. He wasn’t even remotely my “type.” He lived across the country.  He couldn’t possibly like me…  He was my mirror image and he was exactly what I needed.  I raised my white flag and finally surrendered to the love that had been there all along.

My point is this.  Once you come to terms with yourself and the possibility of being alone, you’re more likely to be open to someone else.  Perhaps when you are looking so hard for love, you force things that aren’t meant to be.  You may even settle for someone who is only “eh” rather than “AH!”  Sometimes people are so scared of being alone that they accept behavior and people who aren’t worthy.  You can’t find love.  Love can only find you and you’ve got to be ready and willing when it knocks on your door.  It may very well show up looking a bit different than you’d imagined, but it’s love all the same.

Those that go searching for love, only manifest their own loveless ness. And the loveless never find love, only the loving find love. And they never have to seek for it. -D.H. Lawrence



Why Did You Date Him: Can You Teach an Old Dog New Tricks?

By |February 17th, 2011|Why Did You Date Him?, WhyDid Wisdom|

Everyone knows how much I love my dog.  He literally taught me how to love.  I never knew my heart could feel like it was going to explode with joy until he trotted his furry white paws over to me as a two pound puppy.  It was love at first lick.  That said, while he is the cutest, sweetest dog on the planet, he doesn’t really know any tricks.  He’s four years old and only knows “sit.”  Not particularly impressive.  He also doesn’t really listen to a word I say unless it is W A L K or T R E A T.  So, is it too late to teach Smitty anything new?  Or is it true what they say, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”?

Well, as I did some research it became abundantly clear that dogs and men may have a lot more in common than you might think.  Now, let me preface this by saying that no matter how hard you try, you can never “change” a man.  However, some bad behavior can be alleviated by using the very same tactics you might use to train your beloved pooch.

Set the Precedent: From the beginning, it is imperative to make clear which behavior is acceptable and which behavior is not.  If you’ve let him chew up your shoes, bark all night, and pee on the rug for a while now, you can’t all of a sudden decide that you don’t like that behavior.  Start early and be firm (no matter how cute his little face is).

Positive Reinforcement: While you might think scolding, and smacking, and rubbing his nose in pee is most effective in correcting bad behavior, you’d be wrong.  Giving praise, compliments, and treats for the desired behavior is far more effective.  When he knows he will be rewarded for acting a particular way, he’s more likely to repeat that behavior (Pavlov’s dog ring a bell?).

Consistency is Key: You have to be consistent in your training because it can be very confusing otherwise.  If you let him get away with crapping on the floor one day, but then berate him for it the next, he isn’t going to know if it’s okay or not.

Patience is a Virtue: Going along with the last tip is patience.  Behavior won’t change over night.  So, stick with it and be consistent.

If all else fails, at least he’s cute, right?



Why Did You Date Him: One Isn’t the Loneliest Number

By |February 10th, 2011|Why Did You Date Him?, WhyDid Wisdom|

As Valentine’s Day approaches, I know a lot of young ladies (and some of you men) are feeling a little down and out about spending this heart filled fuzzy wuzzy holiday alone.  Well, stop it.

The photo above is a little plaque my mom gave to me after a pretty shitty breakup (see where I get my sense of humor?).  I have never been the kind of girl who felt the need to have a boyfriend at all times.  Hell, I spent most of my college career single (and I didn’t even have Smitty yet!).  I enjoy hanging out with myself and I have dated enough to know that spending time with someone who sucks is more work than it’s worth.  Why would I want to spend my precious time entertaining some buffoon, when I could be rubbing my heels with a pumice stone or watching re-runs of SATC?  I’m being serious.

So many people are under the impression that if they are alone it says something about them.  I have seen and know quite a few people who are only in relationships because they feel it validates them in some way.  They’re completely miserable, but it’s totally better to be with someone crappy than be- gasp– alone, right?

I spent last Valentine’s Day with my dear, dear, TJ Kelly, eating cupcakes from Billy’s Bakery and making each other laugh.  It wasn’t that I didn’t have other offers (um, of course I did), but I would have preferred hanging with Teej any day of the week over forcing myself to spend the night with some d-bag who just wanted to get me liquored up and attempt to hump my leg later.  No, thanks!

Why can’t being single mean being confident?  Being single simply means you won’t settle for some average Joe and are holding out for Prince Charming. Duh.

Don’t let some silly holiday make you feel bad about being single.  Be happy that you aren’t stuck with a loser who you don’t even like.



Why Did You Date Him: A Case of the Ex

By |January 27th, 2011|Why Did You Date Him?, WhyDid Wisdom|

The other day I had to pull an intervention on a girlfriend who was being completely crazy and masochistic.  Though I love her dearly, I had to save her from herself.  What was her problem?  She was obsessing over an ex… The real problem? It wasn’t her ex.  It was her boyfriend’s ex.

For some reason girls love to know about their boyfriend’s exes.  I can not explain this.  I think we want to find out why it didn’t work and obviously compare what an “upgrade” we are to his old flame.  While a little curiosity may not kill you, if you let the need for knowledge get out of hand, you will drive yourself bat shit crazy.  Thanks to Facebook, Twitter, and the good ol’ Google, you can do quite a bit of reconnaissance work.

However, be careful how deep you dare to dig because once you see some things, you will never be able to erase them from your brain.  In all honesty, yes, he did have a life before you.  Yes, he has had other girlfriends.  And yes, he did most likely care about them at some point in the previous relationship.  Also, don’t forget that you have a past too.  I doubt your boo wants to think about all of the boys before him and I doubt you’d want him to.

I had a guy friend once tell me that his girlfriend brought up his ex so much that he had now thought about his ex MORE in his CURRENT relationship than he did when he was dating her.  How crazy is that?  You said you’d never have a threesome… yet it looks like his ex will be joining you every night in bed.

As if orchestrated by the heavens, I read a quote yesterday that perfectly summarized all of this:

If it happened before you, then it really doesn’t concern you. Don’t let an ugly past ruin a beautiful future. – Rob Hill Sr.

The point is, his ex is just that- his ex.  If he loved her and wanted to be with her, he would.  Do not get so caught up in the past that you completely destroy any chance of a future.  You, my girl, are smart, beautiful, and wonderful and that’s why your boyfriend is with you.  He’s not the one who can’t get over his ex… you are.

Get over it.



Why Did You Date Him?: Attached at the Hip

By |December 31st, 2010|Why Did You Date Him?|

Recently, I’ve seen a lot of shows including “man caves”, girls’ nights out, and fellas griping about the old “ball and chain.”  (This may or may not have something to do with the continuous loop of HGTV shows we’ve been watching). I’m a bit put off by all three of the former terms.  First and foremost, I need to understand a man cave. What is it that goes on inside of said “man cave” that must happen within those confines?  Why can’t these goings on take place in, say, the living room?

Also, I enjoy a cocktail with the girls as much as the next woman, but I never feel like I’m going to explode if I don’t get away from my man and have a cosmo in my hand in the next five minutes.  I don’t need to spend the next three drunken hours discussing the very same men that we were itching so hard to get away from. I can’t imagine dating, let alone being married to someone who I didn’t genuinely enjoy being around.

My man friend and I are starting to become the real life  Alex and Simon from The Housewives of New York City, except about 450,000 times less creepy and I’m 157% certain my love is not playing for the other team.  Since we started dating, we haven’t ever slept a night apart. Basically, I came to visit him and just never bothered to leave. Some may think that is strange, but there is quite honestly no one else I’d rather spend my time with (except for Smitty).  Being around him is like being with myself.  A good friend of mine once told me that when you are with the “right” person, it’s like being all by yourself.  No, she didn’t mean you are sitting there talking to a brick wall.  What she meant was that there are no airs. There are no expectations.  You are being fully and completely yourself. There’s no show and you don’t have to be on your best behavior until the credits roll.

Granted, he does go to work Monday through Friday, so we are apart (albeit we talk on iChat all day…). I just want to be around him because we are always having fun and it’s always easy.  Now, let’s go ahead and take a step back.  There is something to be wary of here.  Wanting to be with someone for the former reason is a great thing in my book.  However, if you have ulterior motives for wanting to be with someone or if the feelings are not mutual, you may be in for some trouble.

With an ex, the reason I wanted to be by his side at all times was because I knew the moment I was out of sight, he would be trying to bag the next pretty young thing who walked through the door.  I was constantly on edge and I knew in my heart of hearts that when he was on “business trips” or boys’ trips (that’s a WHOLE other topic, mind you), it was fairly (read: very) likely that I was not the last voice he’d be hearing before bed. My reasons for wanting all of his time and attention were not out of genuine love and desire.  They were out of fear. Now that’s just not healthy. Whether or not my feelings were validated, I was miserable and that’s no way to live.

Though you may want to spend every waking moment and very last breath with your boo, be sure to make certain that these feelings are shared.  It should be pretty obvious if they are.  You won’t have to ask or beg or fight or trick or threaten about it. It will just “be.”

So if your man is acting more like a neanderthal down in his “special place” and you’re out with the girls drinking to forget that he’s ignoring you in his cave, then maybe its time to reevaluate and perhaps roll a boulder in front of the opening to his man cave. Just a thought.