Thursday, 26 July 2012

Love Tips - Do your relationships all end the same way

Do you keep picking the wrong partner or find your relationships all end the same way? Some people visualise their ideal ‘type’ of partner and yet time and again relationships with that ‘type’ fail to achieve the desired results ….. lasting love.

The problem here is that you are failing to learn by your dating mistakes, driven by your idea of the perfect partner for you. This can often lead to the belief that all women are crazy or all men are cheats, when in fact the problem lies with you not the people you are dating.

A couch potato may visualise a happy relationship with an active outgoing person but it is unlikely to work out as a relationship, yet they will again look for love with an active outgoing person after that relationship has failed.

If you are a homebody and only enjoy occasionally going out then finding a string of party animals is just walking headlong into the same disappointment over and over again.

You can set out in the dating game to meet a certain type and indeed you will meet them, you then expect the love and relationship to develop a particular way and usually it does. The final hurdle is you anticipate how it will end and sure enough it ends that way.

You have to change this cycle, examine the ‘type’ you go for, accept that it may be your fantasy but in reality it simply doesn’t work out and then change your expectations accordingly.

Simply following the same pattern of behaviour and expecting a different result is not only futile but also a recipe for a regularly broken heart.

It may be that you choose very different types to date but the relationships all end the same way, again this is because you follow the same patterns over and over again. Unless you change the way you visualise and act out a relationship then nothing can change, just because their name is Bob not Steve or Cindy not Carol makes no difference, it is your behaviour that is causing the pattern to repeat.

If you visualise that your partner will cheat then invariably they will. Your behaviour changes in anticipation of this cheating, so you look for signs, your partner picks up on this and feels you have no trust in them (hint: love requires trust) and the pattern repeats itself, you can actually bring about the thing you are dreading.

To end this self destructive cycle begin by examining the ‘type’ you go for before you start dating again, are they really what will make a fulfilling relationship for you? Then closely examine your pattern of behaviour in relationships, be honest with yourself do you keep repeating the same mistakes?

Once you recognise the pattern you can begin to change it, try a different type or change your expectations of how the relationship will end.

Love Tips - The Best Relationship Tip | Dating Advice

If you could give just one relationship tip to couples what would it be?

This is a question I was asked recently and finding just one gem of dating advice which covers every couple, whether newly dating or in a long term relationship, wasn’t easy.

I dismissed the dating advice on how to meet someone and fall in love, this often happens naturally, even when we don’t expect it, as doesn’t cover people already in long term relationships.

Much of the relationship advice I would give is for married couples or people in long term relationships, so this doesn’t cover those in the early dating stage.

Hmmmm, one dating tip to cover everyone in a relationship .. ok here it is ….

Never go to bed angry, always make up before you go to sleep.

Whether you live together or apart, always make up after a fight before you both go to sleep.

This isn’t a relationship tip about romance or sentiment, it’s about science.

Sleep experts tell us that while we sleep we file away the days events. Our brains don’t sleep when our bodies do, they process the days events and stabalise our memories.

Stabalising our memories makes them stronger, it’s how we remember things. Think of it like a filing cabinet, as we sleep we file away our memories for future reference.

This means if the girl at the supermarket checkout smiled and was nice to us we will file it away a pleasant experience. Two weeks later you may not consciously think about the pleasant experience in the supermarket but you will find yourself returning to the same supermarket and same checkout girl. Your sub-conscious remembers her as a pleasant experience.

In relationships we all argue sometimes, we say harsh words we really don’t mean and we usually respond in kind.

Think of a time you have gone to sleep angry. Remember as you begin to wake up the next morning feeling great but as you become fully awake you begin to remember the fight yesterday, the hurt feelings and the anger toward your partner?

If the last thing we think about before we sleep is our hurt feelings, a battered self image or feeling unloved then as we sleep those experiences will be filed away and solidified.

On the other hand, if we make the effort to make up (well we know we will eventually so why not do it now) then the last memory we file away about our partners will be pleasant, comforting and loving ones. When we wake up our memories of our partner will be happy and loving.

This doesn’t mean keeping our partner awake until 4am, when they have to get up at 7 for work, analysing every detail of your relationship. Just suck it up, say sorry and make up. Whether you roll over, say sorry and hug your partner or give them a quick call before you sleep, it’s so important not to sleep upset.

There are certain rules for a healthy relationship and also rules for arguing in a relationship which we should all try to put into practice.

Amid the forest of relationship tips and dating advice I really feel this is the one I would like all couples to take on board because it works on a subconscious level and we have no real concept of the damage we can do to our relationships if we go to sleep hurt or angry.

This is my best relationship tip, what’s yours?

Monday, 23 July 2012

Love Tips - 5 Dating Tips for Restaurants

Why oh why do people arrange first dates in a restaurant? People are bound to be nervous and surrounding yourself with sharp implements to impale yourself on in a fit of Norman Wisdom clumsiness is just asking for trouble.

Even if you manage to avoid removing an eye with the butter knife there are still the other restaurant obstacles to be avoided, like wearing half of your food, your inability to read french or know which form of sushi is likely to kill you, forgetting which is the red wine glass or heaven forbid being rude to the waiter in order to look ‘cool’ and in control.

Personally I would prefer a night of ten pin bowling or bungie jumping, at least then I am expected to make a total fool of myself.

However, the fact remains that most first dates are held in restaurants.

Here are a few golden rules for a successful first date eating out.

1. Don’t be adventurous. It is always tempting to say “let’s try the new Bungamelion place in town” in order to look sophisticated but if your usual idea of an adventurous meal out is sweet and sour pork or chicken korma then being faced with a menu of deep fried ostrich testicles or turtles eyes in frog spit may result in a rather embarrassing experience. Stick to the tried and tested.

2. Choose neutral ground. Book somewhere that neither of you have been before, this way if the food is dreadful it does not reflect on your personal choices and you can both complain about the awful food or service and vow never to return again. You can also suggest a second date in order to improve on the first. Lastly if you happen to find a bunny boiler then taking them to your Friday night eatery is a very bad idea, they have a habit of showing up again.

3. Be careful what you eat. Garlic breath is not your only concern when eating out, fish, coffee and spicy meat are just some of the foods that make that first kiss a bit of a nightmare. If you are making a night of it also consider avoiding beans, sprouts and anything that will cause loud unpleasant noises in the trouser regions … not to mention the aroma and when not at home you can’t blame the dog.

4. Don’t order for them. Just because you think roasted horse penis is a gourmet dish doesn’t mean they will. It may seem a romantic gesture but unless you know someones tastes ordering your favourite meal for them may end in disaster, if they don’t like the food you enjoy they will ask themselves what else about you they are not compatible with.

5. Avoid getting drunk. Drinking should relax you, not make you sing the hedgehog song half naked on the bar!! This may go down well with your mates on a Friday night but is not a good impression on a first date. Pace your drinking and don’t be lulled into the false idea that eating while you drink will stop you getting drunk and making a total idiot of yourself.

PS … when dressing for a date check out your rear view, 3 inches of cotton knickers showing is really not attractive (check out the photo above).

Friday, 20 July 2012

Love Tips - The Best Relationship Tip | Dating Advice

If you could give just one relationship tip to couples what would it be?

This is a question I was asked recently and finding just one gem of dating advice which covers every couple, whether newly dating or in a long term relationship, wasn’t easy.

I dismissed the dating advice on how to meet someone and fall in love, this often happens naturally, even when we don’t expect it, as doesn’t cover people already in long term relationships.

Much of the relationship advice I would give is for married couples or people in long term relationships, so this doesn’t cover those in the early dating stage.

Hmmmm, one dating tip to cover everyone in a relationship .. ok here it is ….

Never go to bed angry, always make up before you go to sleep.

Whether you live together or apart, always make up after a fight before you both go to sleep.

This isn’t a relationship tip about romance or sentiment, it’s about science.

Sleep experts tell us that while we sleep we file away the days events. Our brains don’t sleep when our bodies do, they process the days events and stabalise our memories.

Stabalising our memories makes them stronger, it’s how we remember things. Think of it like a filing cabinet, as we sleep we file away our memories for future reference.

This means if the girl at the supermarket checkout smiled and was nice to us we will file it away a pleasant experience. Two weeks later you may not consciously think about the pleasant experience in the supermarket but you will find yourself returning to the same supermarket and same checkout girl. Your sub-conscious remembers her as a pleasant experience.

In relationships we all argue sometimes, we say harsh words we really don’t mean and we usually respond in kind.

Think of a time you have gone to sleep angry. Remember as you begin to wake up the next morning feeling great but as you become fully awake you begin to remember the fight yesterday, the hurt feelings and the anger toward your partner?

If the last thing we think about before we sleep is our hurt feelings, a battered self image or feeling unloved then as we sleep those experiences will be filed away and solidified.

On the other hand, if we make the effort to make up (well we know we will eventually so why not do it now) then the last memory we file away about our partners will be pleasant, comforting and loving ones. When we wake up our memories of our partner will be happy and loving.

This doesn’t mean keeping our partner awake until 4am, when they have to get up at 7 for work, analysing every detail of your relationship. Just suck it up, say sorry and make up. Whether you roll over, say sorry and hug your partner or give them a quick call before you sleep, it’s so important not to sleep upset.

There are certain rules for a healthy relationship and also rules for arguing in a relationship which we should all try to put into practice.

Amid the forest of relationship tips and dating advice I really feel this is the one I would like all couples to take on board because it works on a subconscious level and we have no real concept of the damage we can do to our relationships if we go to sleep hurt or angry.

This is my best relationship tip, what’s yours?

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Love Tips - Could you Marry for Money – Dating Dilemma

Could you marry for money? Dating profiles rarely say I want to marry for money and yet we know there are people looking for a certain lifestyle, which requires money, rather than a special relationship.

What is wrong with saying I want a partner that can provide a certain standard of living? It wouldn’t suit me because I am a romantic and need an emotional connection but not everyone is the same.

Marrying for money is no longer a taboo subject, there is an interesting discussion on ivillage about it. There are even dating sites that cater for people with money and those looking for someone with money. It seems a little mercenary but throughout human life people have married for money.

The first millionaire dating site I came across on google was Seeking Millionaire which I found hilarious as they advertise as free dating (one has to wonder why a millionaire would require free dating services). I also found their home page content a little nauseating, it states “100% FREE for attractive singles” which rather suggests they vote on whether you are good looking enough to get a free service or are too ugly and need to pay. Whatever floats your boat. There are so many of these dating sites now I do wonder how many are full of people looking for a rich partner but no actual rich members – I shall leave it to you to find out and tell me.

If you are one of those people that would say they are just prostituting themselves then I would ask you, would you marry someone without a home or job or any prospects of getting either? Maybe you would if they were your special someone but wouldn’t you ever ask yourself if they married you for the lifestyle you offered them?

Certainly in the UK these relationships have always been perceived in certain ways. There is the young beautiful dolly bird married to the older rich guy or the gorgeous jigalo married to the older woman and we usually shake our heads in disbelief and say such things as “surely they must know they wouldn’t be interested if he/she didn’t have money”.

Of course they know this and they are perfectly happy with the situation. You may be looking for that special someone, your soul mate, your one true love but quite frankly they aren’t. Perhaps they have given up looking, maybe they simply aren’t that interested in romance and are content with a marriage that suits their needs.

This is the wonderful thing about human life, we are all different, we all want different things and there really is someone to suit everyone. To you it may seem cold and shallow to say “I’m rich and want a gorgeous partner to make me feel good about myself” or “I’m gorgeous and looking for a rich partner that I can make feel special”.

The fat old bald guy married to the young model with big boobs isn’t looking for interesting conversation and someone to share his worries with, he may be a workaholic and prefer someone that will be out shopping all day so he doesn’t have to give them a second thought. Is it shallow, yes of course but all relationships are built on compromise and for them they each get what they feel they need from a relationship.

What you must do though is ask yourself have you got what the other person wants. If you are loaded then the answer is yes. Though if you are the one looking for a partner with money you must be realistic, they usually look for one thing and that is pure physical beauty and unless you have it then best forget your dreams of yachting in St Tropez and buying diamonds at Tiffany’s.

It’s certainly not cup of tea but if it’s yours a google search for book how to marry the rich brings back 1088 results, so someone must be doing it.

Love Tips - Online Dating – Stop Man Bashing

I was searching through blogs today and came across an article called speed dating sucks which says “There is nothing more pathetic and… alien… than a pre-menopausal aging childless woman throwing herself headlong into the chaotic vagaries of dating. When a woman doesn’t have children to nurture and raise by her early 30s she morphs rapidly into a sad and tragic creature — a shell entity of raging cynicism that can do no more than go through the motions — that no one wants to be around.”

I simply didn’t trust myself to leave a response, what a dreadful generalisation and more than a little bigoted. However, it did spur me on to write a post I have been meaning to write for some time.

Newslflash ladies, not all men are cheating, inconsiderate, only after one thing, fibbing barstewards!!

Having gone from online dater to online dating website owner I have had a chance to sit back and observe. It has been an interesting learning experience and I feel just a little ashamed of myself (not a lot but a little).

Many men that join my website complain that dating websites have simply become forums for women of a certain age to man bash. This is not really too surprising, many sites are full of men who have no intention of doing anything but playing the field, some are also married looking for adulterous fun but the same can be said for some women on dating sites. Perhaps they are trying to recapture the fun they had dating in their younger days, when people they dated were fun and not ‘interviewing’ them as potential life partners.

It seems ironic that women objected for so many years to sexist remarks and being labeled by our gender, style of dress or hair colour and yet we appear to have simply turned the tables.

In the same way that jokes about boobs and blondes were usually in fun, our jokes about men and their “small brain” are equally not intended to offend. However, remember the days of sexist jokes ladies, we found the first couple funny but they wore thin after ten minutes and an hour of unrelenting sexist jokes later we took the huff.

Men no doubt feel the same way but once we get the bit between our teeth we usually don’t know when to stop. I now watch men join in with the joke for the first ten minutes, then go quiet and then start to show signs of offense. As a woman that likes men to be men (whatever that means these days) I find it a little strange but do accept we, women, have spent the past two or three decades instilling this attitude into men.

Women wanted men to find their feminine side, to understand that it is offensive to generalise about us and treat us as equals. It seems we simply lowered ourselves to their level, we now take the jokes too far because we enjoy the banter. Some women now actively seek out one night stands, have affairs or verbally bash men at every opportunity, making assumptions about what they are looking for.

Confession, at times I am as bad as the rest of the 40 something women that “man bash” and assume all men think with their small brain. Whilst I certainly don’t agree with or fit in to the quoted description above of women in their 30′s or 40′s, I do see a grain of truth of in it, I have indeed become cynical.

To be fair to myself, I am fully aware that there are some nice genuine men out there but rather than give everyone the benefit of the doubt I approach every new person I meet with the attitude of “prove me wrong”.

This attitude has come from over a quarter of a century of dating (gosh it’s frightening when you say it that way), with my share of players, liars, cheats and all round nutters. Yet to be fair most men my age have been through exactly the same experiences, with money grabbing, cheating, lying women.

Perhaps it is time for a ceasefire and we accept that while we do not like being generalised about, neither do men. I declare an amnesty between the sexes, I shall now stop jumping to conclusions about people based on their gender and hope they will do the same for me. I also hope men will begin to understand that jokes generalising about men and their inability to be faithful or think about anything other than sex are exactly that, jokes.

Love Tips - Dating in your 40′s – what men want?

The ever moving goal posts of the dating game leave older daters in turmoil, with dating techniques constantly changing.

No doubt each generation feels the same, we date in our younger years then enter a long term relationship but when we find ourselves on the singles market again everything seems to have changed.

During the past two decades women in our society have been learning that saying you are looking for a “long term relationship” is tantamount to a marriage proposal on a first date.

This attitude still exists, just two days ago I sat with a male friend discussing our hopes, dreams and ideal future partners. When I explained what I would ultimately like for myself in the future he immediately pointed out that he could not be that man.

Why on earth would he feel the need to point that out, do I have desperate and looking for anyone that will have me tattooed on my forehead? I thought I was just discussing my thoughts with a friend, I really found it a little insulting but put it down to natural male reaction these days.

However there is a flip side to this attitude. Women now know the general rule that men run a mile when they hear a woman say she is looking for a life partner and not just a good time. That means that men looking for a long term relationship are met with women trying to sound happy to remain single in order not to frighten them off.

Here is the dilemma for dating in your 40′s, most people will spend a period of time after the break up of their marriage playing the field but at some point they miss having a real partner and the comforts of home life. This is when they find that dating has become a minefield of guesswork, no longer ruled by a set dating etiquette.

My advice is to be honest about what you are looking for, many people are happy to date and stay single but there are also those, both male and female, looking for a long term relationship. There is nothing wrong with either attitude and it is much better to date people that are looking for the same thing.

Love Tips - Dating Tips for Office Parties

It’s office party time again and no doubt there will be the usual embarrassed faces the following day.

There is always the old ‘has been’ that gets plastered and thinks he is casanova and all the 20 year old secretaries are dying for some of what he has got or the female vamp that thinks she can use her authority to get the young men to ‘pay her some attention’ under the mistleoe.

I doubt it is normal for you to get roaring drunk and dance to “I’m too sexy” whilst stripping off to your undies on a monday morning in the office, so why would you do it at the office party? The office party is an extension of your workplace, your colleagues and employers are not your mates out to paint the town red, so retain your dignity and follow these tips to ensure you remain employed after the holiday season is over.

1. What to Wear

It is a great time to show a more relaxed, attractive side to yourself rather than the boring grey suit or white blouse and pencil skirt but don’t go too far, the boob tube and ultra mini skirt are not appropriate. Too much cleavage, thigh or the rude t-shirt you bought on holiday is not going to impress the boss and may well damage your reputation at work. Wear party clothes that allow you to look elegant and attractive without looking like the office bike.

2. Timing is Everything

Ensure you arrive on time and don’t stay too long. If you are in the festive mood then arrange to meet your friends after the party is over, where you can let your hair down and be as silly as you like. Remember your new mantra ‘the office party is still the office’ so make sure you stay until after the boss has left, they will usually make a quick exit knowing the employees want to have fun.

3. Alternate Drinks

Getting roaring drunk and trying to touch up Tracey from personnel or telling the boss he is a fat, bald useless twat may seem like a good idea at the time but is always a very bad idea at the office party. Alternate your drinks between something alcoholic and something soft to stay relatively sober and avoid such undignified behaviour. If you start to feel you are getting drunk switch to soft drinks and stay away from members of the opposite sex (especially the bosses wife).

4. Not a First Date

You have fancied someone in the office rotten for ages so surely the office party is the perfect place to make your move … right? Wrong, oh so wrong. First consider the pro’s and con’s of dating a work colleague before you consider making any advances. Yes it is a good place to get to know them and let them know of your intentions, perhaps even manage to arrange a first date but it is not in itself a date. Don’t spend all night following each other around like love sick puppies or ignore your other colleagues, just swap numbers or arrange a date and then spend the night doing the ‘eyes across a crowded room’ thing. Always remember that anyone you approach is also someone that you have to see again in the office so rejection may lead to embarrassment for both of you, make sure you can read ‘yes I am interested’ signals before asking out a work colleague.

5. Bringing a Date

Only consider bringing a date if it stated that the party is for employees and their partners. Don’t bring someone you met last week that you can’t keep your hands off or heaven forbid use it as a first date venue for someone you have not been out with before. You want to be professional in your work so don’t ruin things by spending the Christmas party with your tongue down someone’s throat.

6. Have Fun

It is possible to have fun without getting drunk and throwing up in the waste paper basket … no honestly it is. Join in the festivities, get up and have a dance or sing-song and show them there is more to you than they have thus far seen (more personality not more flesh). Enjoy the party but remember that you have to see these people again on Monday morning so being caught with Sharon from packing having a knee trembler in the loo is perhaps not going to seem like such a good idea when you are sober (especially if you are Sharon from packing).

Love Tips - Would you Date a Man with Facial Hair?

Facial hair on a man is something that women are either attracted to or seriously put off by. Dating a man with facial hair is personal choice but what percentage of women would date a man with a beard?

When asked this question today I was reminded of one of my deep dating regrets.

When I was 21 I was asked out by a man sporting a full beard and I said no. About 4 months later I saw him out with friends, he was clean shaven and drop dead gorgeous …. I have kicked myself for years for being so shallow but it really can make that much difference.

I happen to like goatees, can put up with designer stubble but a full beard is a no for me. I am undecided about a moustache on it’s own.

What is it about full beards that puts me off so much? I think they just suggest old and set in their ways, boring even. I am reminded of Greek philosphers or heaven forbid old American Presidents … strange how the brain associates such things.

For me a beard is something only an old man or biker should consider, otherwise it just suggests boring or lazy. It seems not only men are shallow when it comes to the issue of shaved or not!!

So ladies the question is would you date a man with a lot of facial hair? If not then why not?

Take a look at these different styles of facial hair and beards for men and see which you find attractive and which would put you off dating him.

Love Tips - Rules for Dating a Work Colleague

Now all the works Christmas parties are over some people will be faced with the dilemma of dating a work colleague.

In large workplaces ‘office romances’ are inevitable but being mature and setting ground rules from the start can save a lot of problems in the future.

It has never been a good idea to date a work colleague, to the point where many companies these days have included something about it in their company policy.

It causes particular problems when one person is superior to the other in authority. Read my experience of dating a work colleague, the companies reaction and how it affected my career.

Even where favouritism is not an issue, if your relationship is known then accusations will usually lead in that direction.

However, love finds us where it can and sometimes we have to make life choices that are not just about our career.

It’s easy to think you can keep the romance until after hours but unless strict ground rules are in place and adhered to then little glances will soon become naughty little emails and giggling behind the water cooler.

After a fight in your relationship there is nothing more obvious and uncomfortable for others than hostility between you at work.

Unfortunately there is a side to office romance that is anything but romantic, you need to sit together and discuss a game plan at the start of the relationship. Remember when you have this discussion you are not only making choices about your love life but about your career too.

Some rules to consider:

1. Establish before you return to work whether you are now in a relationship or whether it was a holiday fling.

2. If it is a relationship then decide whether you are going to let it be generally known in the office or workplace. Should you discuss your relationship with Human Resources or your boss (this will depend on the company and the job posts you both hold).

3. If not then discuss how you should answer any questions should anyone get curious or suspicious and how to handle things if your secret becomes known.

4. If you do choose to make your relationship public knowledge then Keep it Professional. Don’t use your company computers to send love emails to each other, don’t sit in meetings holding hands under the table or meet in the stationary cupboard for a quick snog.

5. Consider other people’s feelings, you may be madly in love and can’t keep your hands off each other but other people are just going about their work and don’t need to be distracted.

6. What will happen if you break up? Nobody gets into a relationship anticipating a break up but they do happen so how will you handle things if your relationship doesn’t work out? Do you work in different departments and can therefore avoid each other or is your secretary suddenly going to start slamming files down on your desk and rushing out in tears?

Love Tips - Abusive Relationships – Where to get help

Whether your partner is physically abusive, mentally abusive or a self abuser like an alcoholic … you need to accept that waiting around trying to change them is not going to work. Abusive relationships get worse over time, not better.

It is not only weak people that become victims of abuse, I was a very strong and independent career woman but found myself a victim in an abusive relationship. I was not used to anyone dominating me so when it did happen I just turned into mush and didn’t know what to do.

Approximately 20% of domestic abuse victims in Britain are men. The good news for male victims is statistics show that once out of the relationship their female partners tend not to harrass you.

Abuse of any kind quickly starts to remove your confidence, you begin to believe this is your fault and all the things they tell you that you cannot do without them, you begin to believe.

The first step is to recognise warning signs of an abusive relationship and understand that signs of abuse may be subtle, not all abusers are hitters.

Take a moment to read this list comparing healthy and abusive relationships and tick each attribute that you feel best describes your current relationship. Can you see any warning signs?

As our confidence erodes we need people outside the situation to either be honest with us or remove us from the situation.

There is NO shame in being the victim of abuse or not being “strong” enough to recognise it or walk away from it. It is not a fault in ourselves, the actions of these people are designed to make us feel small and incapable.

Read as much as you can about the mind of an abuser but not so you can understand them or feel sorry for them. Learn to make you strong mentally, when you understand why they treat you in such a way then you can begin to recognise that it is not your fault and you are not the terrible person they tell you you are.

To move forward we have to recognise that we are not made of stone and anyone can be a victim but we choose not to be a victim anymore.

Leaving an abusive relationship is not easy, I know I have been there but there is a lot of help out there, you just have to be strong enough to ask for it.

I heard those words so many times … “I’m sorry it will never happen again” … it almost always does. You feel too weak to leave, too incapable of surviving outside your current situation.

That is not the case, it is your partners actions that are making you feel that way and believe me after you leave it only takes a short time until your inner strength begins to rebuild itself and you start to wonder why you stayed there so long.

For advice and help with abusive relationships in the UK, including emergency hotlines and shelters


Womens Aid – for women and children suffering from domestic violence and they have a FREE 24 hour emergency hotline .. 0808 2000 247

Refuge – for domestic violence help for women and children they also offer a FREE 24 hour helpline 0808 2000 247

Al-Anon – for families and friends of alcoholics, this is a branch of Alcoholics Anonymous but is for family and friends suffering because of someones drinking problem. You can call their helpline from 10am to 10pm 365 days a year .. 020 7403 0888

Broken Rainbow – for lesbians and gay men suffering domestic violence, you can only call at certain times. Mon 2-8pm, Wed 10-1pm and Thur 2-8pm .. 08452 604460

Mens Advice Line – for Domestic Abuse – Help & Support for Men, their lines are open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 10am-1pm and 2pm-5pm .. 0808 801 0327

The BBC ia a good resource for quick information on domestic violence – practical help for victims, such as removing a partner from your home, legal issues, housing, shelters, benefits, etc.

The Mayo Clinic offers excellent advice for seeking help with domestic violence in the US.

Don’t forget your Doctor will have a welath of information about where to get help if you are in an abusive relationship and if you are in danger call the police.

Please do not allow yourself to be a victim anymore, ask someone you know for help now.

Love Tips - Friends With Benefits or Just Being Used?

“Friends with Benefits” is a term used for sex only relationships with a friend but do friends with benefits relationships work?

It’s easy to think or say “it’s just a bit of fun and nobody will get hurt” but the reality of these arrangements is more often than not a broken friendship and emotional pain for one participant.

The worst reason to get into a friends with benefits relationship is fooling yourself that it can start out this way and will develop into a full blown romantic loving relationship … the odds are it won’t and you will just get hurt and used.

If you are tempted to get into a friends with benefits relationship, perhaps in order to keep loneliness at bay for a short time or until Mr/Miss Right comes along, then you may wish to consider these points before agreeing to be a “friend with benefits”.

Men and Woman ARE Different

Usually in friends with benefits relationships men are after the benefits and women are after the friendship, sorry men but that’s the honest truth. Firstly we have to understand the difference between love and lust and decide what we are really looking for.

A night in with a friend, a pizza, weepy video and sofa hug will generally make a woman feel satified emotionally and it’s a small price for a man to pay to get the “benefits”.

Would you agree to do this with just any friend?

I would think the answer is a resounding no, so before agreeing to such an arrangement take a long hard look at a good friend of the opposite sex that you would definately not agree to be a friend with benefits with.

Why are they any different, you just need some sexual satisfaction with someone you trust but without emotional involvement right? In order to agree to sleep with someone there has to be some attraction involved and attraction is an emotion .. so how do you now stick to the rules of friends with benefits and not get emotionally involved?

What Are the Benefits For You?

Given the above (you may not even be aware of any feelings you have for your friend but to even consider this arrangement you should accept those feelings must be there) what will happen to the friendship when those feelings begin to emerge for one of you?

Can your friendship survive the hurt feelings of rejection or the jealousy when you see your friend with someone else. Of course you can deny, deny, deny your emotions but when you are back in your bed alone at night crying what benefit will you have gained from this arrangement?

Not Interesting Enough to Date

If someone you just met said “you don’t interest me enough to date but do you fancy a roll in the hay just to relieve my tensions” how would you react? In effect the friend that suggests a “friends with benefits” relationship is saying exactly the same thing, all they are looking for is sexual gratification without any strings or emotional attachment. Are you really willing to sell yourself so short?

You Deserve Better

I know it is really easy to say “you deserve better so wait for the right guy or girl” but that is no comfort when you are feeling utterly lonely and looking for love. Loneliness is all consuming at times  and causes us to hurt emotionally but we also know it comes and goes.

You can be miserable or motivate yourself it really is a choice we make and we don’t have to resort to friends with benefits to keep lonliness at bay.

Love Tips - How to Get Out of a Bad Date

Ever wondered how to get out of a bad date? You know the ones, where you sit there hoping the building will catch fire so you have a good excuse to leave.

It’s a horrible situation, you have nothing in common and the longer you sit there the more faults you can find with them, you start grinding your teeth as they are talking.

The best option is to tell the truth, just say you are sorry but you don’t feel you have anything/enough in common to continue your date. It’s surprising how you will then relax, finish your drink and casually chat knowing the pressure is off… I have made a few good friends this way.

If you can’t face being honest or hurting their feelings then rather than extend the agony just use one of these get out of a bad date free cards.

Receive a phone call

It’s an old one and your date will know it’s a fib but it gets the message across and you out of there without too much fuss or embarrassment.

Get a friend or family member to call you one hour after you are due to meet your date. Arrange how you will answer the phone, if you like your date you could answer “make it quick, I’m busy” but if you don’t like them try “hey I didn’t expect to hear from you, is everything ok?” .. change the words slightly, they may have read this too.

If it’s a lunch date then you are needed back at work pronto to deal with an irate client/boss, flood, surprise audit or Cindy from accounting’s broken nail.

If a night time date then your friends goldfish, dog, child, husband or second cousin twice removed has just died, had an accident, given birth (perhaps not if its their husband or 6 year old), swallowed the house keys or run away with the circus.

The excuse really doesn’t matter, what matters is that you get the message across that you are cutting the date short and leaving … now!!

Put them off

If you don’t care how many people they tell what a rotten date you are then be a rotten date.

Break every rule for a first date:

a) women be a gold digger .. say things like “I want to go to Barbados on holiday but can’t afford it, hopefully I’ll meet someone soon that will pay for it for me” or “I dumped my last partner because the cheapskate only spent bought me a new car for my birthday and I’m worth so much more” or “so how much do you earn, I hope it’s more than my ex”.

b) men be really cheap .. complain about the prices of drinks, talk about how your ex would waste money on things like make-up, sanitary products or rubbish like sliced bread .. when unsliced bread is just so much cheaper.

b) your ex is a superhero .. talk incessantly about how fabulous your ex was, turn every subject into a story about your ex .. they were gorgeous, caring, talented, great in bed and you just know you will never meet anyone that can match up to them.

c) tell them all about your (hopefully imaginary) illness .. manic depression, schizophrenia, suicide attempts or herpes. Go into gory details about uncontrollable mood swings, ‘voices’ that tell you what to do, stomach pumping or scars and scabs. Preferably do this while you are eating.

d) be arrogant and complain about everything, talk too loudly and complain, complain, complain. Food too organic, drinks too wet, film too loud, weather too weathery, everyone you ever met was an idiot and far inferior to you (not just dates but at work, school, your hairdresser, dentist, etc).

e) be an ‘ist’ .. whether it’s a racist, sexist, ageist or just all round hate everything-ist .. tell your date that you wished you lived in a society where gays and old people are killed off, coloured people were still slaves that know their place, it should be legal for people to beat their kids or ask your date what’s really wrong with paedophilia.

Try one of these and see how long it takes before your date receives a phone call and has to go rescue their friends goldfish from the circus.

Run Away

In absolute desperate situations just be rude and leave, say you are going to the toilet and don’t come back. It’s not a nice thing to leave anyone sitting there but once you get out of the car park call them and say you had to go .. then switch your phone off.

Desperate Measures

If all else fails stuff a load of paper towels in the toilet dustbin and set fire to them .. you may spend a while in prison for arson but you’ll have had the perfect excuse to get out of a bad date.

Love Tips - Afraid of Relationships or Love?

Are you afraid of relationships or falling in love? Have past experiences hurt you to the point that relationships and love scare you?

If so you are certainly not alone. As we get older fear can stop us entering a new relationship because experience tells us it ends badly and we get hurt.

Pain is not something many of us volunteer for, either physical or emotional but in the same way a fear of flying can stop us travelling and enjoying holidays, a fear of emotional pain can stop us enjoying all that relationships and love have to offer.

It can become a phobia, standing on the precipice afraid to look down, all our limbs rigid with the fear of letting go .. so we choose the safe option and step back to our comfort zone of opting for just friendship.

You can tell yourself that you are happier in your safe little bubble but isn’t that how agoraphobia starts? You are not keeping yourself safe but shutting yourself off.

Some people can be quite happy single but many people just find ways to replace the human affection they miss. Getting a pet for hugs, joining a club so they have someone to chat to or leaving the television on even when they are not watching it, just for the company.

To deny yourself love is to deny being human and can lead to many safe but lonely years. What people are afraid of is not love or relationships but of losing it.

Whether you have lost your partner through death, betrayal or they simply stopped loving you, the hurt can be too much for some people and they would rather avoid a repeat performance. Check out these 5 tips for dating after divorce to help you prepare for getting back in the dating game.

Another problem after a long term relationship is you lose the ‘dating’ habit and tend to talk, think and act like one half of a relationship. This can be quite offputting both for the person you are dating and yourself, as dating seems less light hearted and fun.

It may be that you meet someone really special, someone you could easily fall in love with but the fear makes you keep them at arms length, suggesting ‘just friends’ would be better.

This really is not the answer because at some point you are going to need to get back in the game and then you will think back on those lost chances.

You may avoid the hurt that may or may not come but you will definately miss all the good times that come with falling in love and being in a relationship. So why give up a definate because a maybe might one day happen?

If your ‘friend’ starts dating someone you then have to deal with those emotions, perhaps jealousy or loneliness will become a problem for you.

I am not suggesting that the first opportunity that comes along you jump in with both feet, a blindfold on and hope for the best but at some point you are going to need to open up and let someone in .. just a little.

Friends is a good way to start and it is better to let the person know you have feelings for them but are afraid to take it further. This way if they also have feelings for you they are less likely to start dating someone else until you feel confident enough to go that one step further.

Don’t take it too slowly though or they may get bored and look elsewhere, keep them updated with your emotional progress so they know you are trying.

Remember, dating someone is not a proposal of marriage or a lifetime commitment, it’s just two people having fun and getting to know each other, so there is no need to be afraid of relationships or love.

Love Tips - Dream Guy Propositions Gone Bad

So you’ve just gotten dressed up in your new black dress and Manolo Blahnik shoes to meet the next selection of hand picked blind dates kindly supplied by your friends. Incidentally, these are the same friends who believe that the next guy around the corner will definitely be the one to lead you down the isle of bliss and happily ever afterness.   Dinner is going splendidly well and his conversation is quite captivating, until he mentions the fact that he has an interesting proposition for you.  Your curiosity is beyond peaked. Your ready to answer “Yes” to what you think is a “Will you be the woman of my dreams type of question, when out of his mouth spills a torrid proposition of “Will you fulfill my needs when my wife doesn’t?

Unbelievable! He’s asking you to be the side of mashed potatoes to his wife’s meatloaf.  But for the fact that you are dining in a 5 star restaurant, you would indeed strangle him with your fine cloth dinner napkin.  Just when you thought you had a great catch on the line, he turns out to be a big fat fish of disappointment.  Because lying and infidelity come easy to him, he can’t understand why you’re so offended by this obviously juicy opportunity that any woman would just wait in line to snatch up.  He also casually mentions that he realizes why you might be disheartened by the fact that he is married and off the market, but believes that love can sometimes be betrayals best friend.  This blind catch of the day must most certainly be “Out to Lunch indeed!”

If your dream date has gone from bad to worse before dessert is even served, take heart and know that you’re not alone.  You begin to wonder if all men are callous cold hearted selfish snakes.  It is not surprising to learn that half of all blind dates and internet dating experiences fizzle out before they pass go or at least are as uncomfortable as hell.  It’s generally either a front row seat to hours of boredom or a one way ticket to “all about me island” where you have to listen to an epic dissertation about how his animal magnetism draws chicks to him like bees to honey.

The benefits of double dating at least provide you a way of getting out of dodge or arranging a fake cell phone call to your table.   Show me a blind date that goes well and I’ll show you a professional colorblind florist. They just don’t exist.  At the end of the night you’re left with dashed hopes and filthy propositions.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Love Tips - Dating tactics to avoid – part 1 Desperation

Desperation in the dating game is not an attractive quality, you are not saying to someone “you are special” but are in fact saying “you’ll do”.

I have spent my whole life going at everything like a bull in a china shop and then of course I get bored and go to do something different. For example I wake up one morning and decide I want to live in a different country, my parents then receive a phone call advising them of my whereabouts (father grumbles in the background about not paying for my flight when I run out of money – but of course he always has done). Careers have been the same way, decide what I want to do and just do it until I change my mind and want to do something else.

So why would I treat my romantic life any differently? To my regret I haven’t, I went at it with the usual gusto and believe me I take no prisoners (or if I do I make sure to torture them slowly). I would go through stages where I would be sick of being single and decide to perform the charge of the light brigade on the poor unsuspecting male population.

This is not a good move, for many reasons the most obvious of which are:

1. Firstly it is an act of desperation and men can sense desperation from a mile away. While we girls did home economics classes in school the guys were off doing ‘how to spot and avoid someone that wants to get married’ classes.

2. The line between romance and lust becomes very blurred and you begin to mistake casual relationships for the ‘real thing’. This is emotionally exhausting and the only person that will get repeatedly hurt in this game is YOU.

3. You invariably end up with someone completely unsuitable, I call it the ‘you’ll do’ dating syndrome. This means you would rather be with just about anyone than by yourself. Then one day you realise you have this god awful relationship you have to extract yourself from.


4. ‘Nice’ guys get scared off and run away very quickly, leaving you with the arrogant philanderers or losers to choose from. Neither group make good long term relationship material.

5. Your energy levels are unlikely to be able to keep up the tempo. When you do settle into a relationship and your hormones drop to normal levels you are no longer the bouncy, bubbly, try anything once girl he met and he soon notices.

So if you wake up one morning with your biological clock beating through your chest and decide you no longer enjoy being free and single, play it a little cool. Take your time and try to begin your search with the attitude you are just looking for a wider social life and if Mr Right happens along then all the better.

Believe me there is much truth in the saying ‘when you stop looking someone will come along’ and this is why, because desperation is a real romance killer.

For a man’s view of desperate women have a read of Brad’s short article in the Little Red Rails Blog

Women are not the only ones guilty of being desperate for a relationship, however despite our enlightened age of equality men still like to be the ones that do the chasing. But guys remember, women are just as put off by someone following them around like a love sick schoolboy and despite the age of equality most women are still looking for their strong alpha male.

Love Tips - Dating dilemmas – who should pay for the first date?

The issue of paying for a first date can be a minefield of feeling as though you are being advantage of, not wanting to appear cheap or money grabbing and not wishing to insult you date.

It is a little offensive when you think about it, most women are now prepared to sue at the first sign of inequality of the sexes but still lean back in their chair when the bill arrives at the end of a first date and simply expect the man to pay.

I am sorry guys it is offensive but the age old rule still applies, men pay for the first date – well if they want a second date they do!

It is quite surprising how awkward this issue can become. A very amusing look at the male view on this can be seen at So Sauve

Here are a couple of scenarios to consider:

1. Nothing had been discussed about who would pay before the bill arrived. He immediately started counting up who had eaten what in order to split the bill. The moron then asked me for a second date – like that was going to happen before hell froze over. Even if the man is of the attitude that modern women should pay their way, who in their right mind wouldn’t just split it 50/50?

2. When the bill arrives and I lean back in my chair, with clearly no intention of even offering to split the bill. He smiles graciously, pays the bill and thinks ‘oh great one of those that expects me to pay for everything, I wonder what that other woman I have been chatting to is like?’

3. The man grabs the bill and insists on paying it. I am now wondering whether he thinks I owe him something in return if I allow him to pay.

4. I offer to split the bill and the man accepts. I am happy to do so but take the hint that he doesn’t want a second date and if he does he just ensured it wouldn’t happen.

5. The man offers to pay and I strongly insist we split it, despite his repeated requests to allow him to pay. I have now removed a small portion of his manhood and demonstrated that I am not the ‘lady’ I profess to be.

So the answer is to get in there first guys, accept men still pay for first dates and stop the awkwardness. As soon as the bill arrives say to your date “Please, allow me”. If she suggests splitting the bill simply say “there is no obligation but I would like to pay for this and if we do happen to go out again we can argue about splitting the bill then”. This reassures her that she doesn’t ‘owe’ you anything in return, maintains your manhood and shows her you can be generous without assuming she is a weak and feeble woman that cannot pay her way.

Ladies, please be gracious about this situation despite our insistence that men should be able to read our minds the simple truth is they can’t. Offer to split the bill but don’t argue about it, if he suggests he wants to pay then say thank you and accept or say thank you but if you go out again you would like to split the bill or even pay for the second date (whatever suits you and your knowledge of his financial circumstances).

By the way ladies, very few men like to be treated as a money tree so do not make assumptions and think they should pay for everything each time you go out – women wanted equality, well now we have it and must accept that sometimes splitting or paying the bill comes with the package. Evan at Ask E-Cyrano made a brilliant post about this very issue some time ago and it highlights the issue of men being taken advantage of.

Sometimes I wish we still lived in the days when there was a clear line between the sexes.

Love Tips - Dating and drinking – do they mix?

Dating someone new can be a nerve wracking experience but is drinking the right way to relax and enjoy the date?

Isn’t alcohol an amazing thing, just a few drinks and you transform into a suave, charming, hilarious magnet for the opposite gender.

Unfortunately this is only true in your head and perhaps to your friends you are drinking with.

To everyone else you have merely degenerated into a blithering idiot, with as much sex appeal as a slug.

The other side of the coin is that a couple of drinks can relax you, making you more chatty and even a little flirtatious, which can be very attractive.

One of the difficulties of first dates is that you are tempted to have one too many in order to rid yourself of nerves and relax you enough to actually enjoy the experience.

Another factor to consider is safety, which is pointed out by Kathryn on The Dating Weblog

How to get it right:

1. Order wine by the glass rather than the bottle.

2. Drink half pints rather than pints.
3. If having a meal alternate your drinks with a glass of water.

4. Don’t think that a coffee will counteract the alcohol – it’s a myth.

5. Not attracted to your date? Then don’t drink, beer goggles really do exist and can get you into all sorts of difficult and unpleasant situations.

6. Met up with your date for a drink and are attracted to them? Suggest moving on for dinner, the food will counteract some of the alcohol but still pace yourself.

So the general plan is to relax and enjoy yourself but not overdo it. 

Love Tips - Dating – the Art of Rejection

One dilemma with dating online is how to reject people you meet offline that simply aren’t what you are looking for. It is so easy to get carried away with the idea of who someone online is, the image of them you create in your mind can be far from reality but until you actually meet there is no telling if they are the one you are looking for.

Rejecting someone can be very difficult, I have always found it difficult because I don’t like hurting others feelings and I am equaly uncomfortable with the emails after a date asking me to explain why they are not my Mr Right.

The Americans have an expression I like, which is “he’s just not that in to you” which of course can just as easily be she’s just not that in to you. You may meet someone that has every quality you are looking for but for some unexplainable reason they just aren’t that special someone. I say unexplainable because they may be great looking, funny, intelligent, in fact they tick all your boxes but the chemistry just isn’t there.

The real difficulty comes when that person is ‘in to you’ because for you it is almost like rejecting a coffee, there is no emotion at stake but you know you will hurt their feelings. There is nothing you can do about it, people will say “I can change and become the person you are looking for” but they are just kidding themselves, if the chemistry doesn’t exist nothing can force it to.

Rejection is not something a majority of us take well, we all want to be special, we want people to like us even if we don’t like them – it’s strange but true.

It took me years to learn the art of rejection and I would either string people along in order not to hurt their feelings or torture myself trying to work out why I was not ‘the one’ for them. My lesson came when I met someone that was good at rejecting people kindly and it is one of my most memorable dates.

We had been chatting online for some time, he was funny, intelligent and I liked the photos he sent me. We had a lot in common and online seemed perfectly suited. Eventually we met for lunch and whilst there was no wow factor when we shook hands I felt he could certainly grow on me. We had lunch and went for a walk around town, there were no uncomfortable silences and things went well. Late afternoon we reached our cars and he shook my hand and said “it has been great to meet you, you are terrific and just like you are online but I’m afraid not the one for me. I hope you find your Mr Right soon”. With that he pecked me on the cheek got in to his car and drove off.

For the first time there had been no uncomfortable moment, I didn’t feel the need to ask why and I felt in no way hurt. There were no silly promises of staying in touch or remaining friends, we both knew we were looking for something special and for him I was not it. Yet ten years later I still remember our date and remain content with it.

What did he do that was different? He was totally genuine, when he said it had been great to meet me he had meant it and when he told me I was terrific he looked me in the eye and said it with confidence, I believed him. He wasn’t rejecting me because I wasn’t special, he was rejecting me because I wasn’t that special someone for him.

That is the key to the art of rejection, to make someone feel valued and special, to say plainly you are not the one but I genuinely hope you find what you are looking for. That allows them to walk away with head held high and not feel inadequate or question their appearance or character.

I am very grateful for that lesson and hope in the past decade when I have rejected someone I have done so in a way that makes them equally valuable as a person and accept that for me they are simply not my special someone.

On a final note, there is someone out there for everybody so please don’t feel the need to explain to people what you find unattractive about them, what is unattractive to you may be just the thing someone else is looking for. It is okay to suggest they put a more recent photo or tell the truth about their age but leave personal appearance and character traits out of the discussion.

Not sure what to say to people when you want to say thanks but no thanks, Ronnie Ann Ryan gives10 kind ways to say it in one of her online articles.

Jamy explains a perfect example of what can happen when you don’t give a clear message and allow things to flow beyond the first date in her how to say no blog post.

Love Tips - How to Spot an Online Dating Player

Every online dating site will have it’s share of players and if you want to find a genuine relationship then learn to spot the players on the dating sites you join. Let’s start with the basics, what is a player and how does joining online dating sites suit their purpose?

I would like to thank Simon for the inspiration to write this post and I dedicate it to you, you are truly a player at heart.

Players are people that use online dating sites to arrange a string of casual encounters, they are simply sexual predators looking for their latest power trip and online dating sites offer a wide range and number of potential victims.

After a few bad experiences and a lot of heartache I now enjoy playing ‘spot the players’ on dating websites, so it’s a strange hobby but after all some people like train spotting don’t they?!

Do not confuse a player with people who simply enjoy casual sex, players are called players for a reason, it’s all a game to them.

Just to give you an idea of how sick and twisted these people can be, a few years ago when I first joined a dating site I immediately received a message from a lady which said “just to warn you, as you are definately his type, this guy “username” is a player on this site. After he had finished with me recently he actually sent a critique with an overall score out of 10 and a list of ladies on the same site, along with their scores, to make comparisons with. It was a detailed report including my dress, makeup, table manners and of course sexual performance. The cheeky git even added some tips for how I can improve my game. As awful as it is to admit this I just wanted to warn you”.

She and I are still friends to this day and sure enough after a few weeks on the site I got my first message from him telling me he was just about to give up on the site when he spotted my profile. I already knew, because of the warning, that he had been a member of the site for over 4 years and sent the same message to every women he went after but had I not have been warned imagine how special that would have made me feel (especially as he had used a photo of a male model from Canada on his profile and whilst I am certainly attractive I am not model material by any stretch of the imagination).

Players can be single, in a relationship or married but they are all looking for one thing, the next challenge and sexual encounter. Modern times now see an increasing number of female players in a game that was traditionally thought of as exclusively male.

Generally when you first join a new dating site you will very quickly be approached by the honest “looking for a casual sexual encounter” gang. They will send you a message saying they like your profile photo and asking if you fancy meeting up for a hot night or weekend.

These people don’t trouble me at all as 99 times out of 100 they accept no for an answer. A simple reply saying “sorry that’s not what I am looking for” results in never hearing from them again or a polite reply saying ” thanks for the reply and I hope you find what you are looking for”. These people I can respect, I may not wish to live their lifestyle but they are honest, polite and genuine.

Players are also not the sleazebag brigade. These are the guys and girls that send you sexually explicit, rather nauseating first messages, including their instant messaging details so you can have cyber sex or an unsolicited message saying “liked your profile, blah blah blah, I have attached a photo of myself.

Basically this behaviour is the equivalent of that letch you saw in the supermarket car park last week that told you what a nice attractive bottom you have and what they would like to do to your bottom (but not in those words). Treat the online equivalent with the same contempt and do not respond to them and DO NOT open the attachment, this just feeds their desire to shock. Some people like this sort of thing from a total stranger so leave them to respond.

No, real players are skilled at their game, they are experienced hunters looking for their next victim. They bide their time and take weeks or even months if necessary to get to know you. They will say all the right things at just the right times ….. well they should be good at it, they get enough practice.

As they talk to you over time they will probably mention some woman/man on the site that is ‘stalking’ them, this is a flashing red light. What this actually means is that the ‘stalker’ is in fact a previous victim they are continuing to string along.

Unlike people that just enjoy casual sex and then move on, players see their victims as their personal trophy and keep these people hanging on as a symbol of their popularity and skill at the game. In their mind of course there is always the remote possibility they will have a bad weekend without a new victim and may need to call in one of the old ones.

Remember for them it is a game, they are an actor playing the part of James Bond or Marilyn Monroe and will shower you with romance, compliments and be everything you want and need for them to be. For them there is no cheap dirty hotel or fish and chips on the pier, only the best will do and the men will provide it for you and the women will insist on it if you are getting anywhere near their g-string.

Think of these people as trophy hunters, they get their prey in their sights and will go to bizarre lengths to attain their goal. Once they have metaphorically ‘shot’ you they have no further interest and will move on to the next victim. The sad part is that the first night or weekend you spend together really is special, they are everything you thought they would be but for them the thrill of the game is now over.

However they will not tell you they are no longer interested, so you will get messages like:

  • The ex wife/husband is causing trouble and they don’t want that to interfere in your relationship so can you give them some time to sort their ex out and then you can get back to where you left off.
  • They have a sick parent/child/pet that needs to be cared for for a while but as soon as they are better the two of you will go away for a holiday to make up for the lost time.
  • Work is manic, a new project is going badly and they have to go away to sort it out for a while but will keep in touch by email and text.

Their reasons for the cool down are always ‘honourable’ and designed to keep you poised to come running when they next click their fingers. It is simply a power trip for them and nothing more, they have invested time and energy into you and are not going to give you up that easily.

These guys know what they are doing, they have been at this game for years in most cases and the internet supplies a constantly renewed source of potential victims.

Players tactics include but are not limited to:

  • the “I am going to leave the site but thought I would just say hi” line – this is designed to make you respond quickly and feel special when they stick around to get to know you. Now ask yourself why they have been a member for X number of years and just decided to leave the site now.
  • the “I am fed up with the dating game and am going to take a break but would love for us to be friends” line, coupled with their little harem of stalkers of course – ask yourself why Mr/Miss Smooth & Popular wants to be just friends with a total stranger of the opposite sex on a dating site. This is to make you think they aren’t just after sex.
  • Offers of helping you find the right guy/girl because he/she talks to lots of men/women on the site (just as friends of course) and so knows who the players are and can help you avoid them – again designed to make you trust them and believe they aren’t after a quick fling.
  • Asks too many questions about you and your emotions and their replies to your answers go into great detail about how and why they feel the same way. They are using empathy to get you on side, if you have asthma then so do they, if you suffer from depression then they have post traumatic stress disorder, if you have been emotionally hurt then their ex ran off with their best friend, etc.
  • Players will make declarations of growing attachment and emotion very quickly and use nauseating terms like “you are my soul mate” or “I have waited all my life for my perfect partner and here you are”. This can often be before they have even spoken to you on the phone. They are playing into your hopes and dreams of meeting that special someone.

The difficulty in spotting them is that they seem so sincere and the reason is because they are. They are in fact in love ….. however not with you but with the game they are playing.

Now I can hear you saying “I would never fall for that, I’m not that stupid” but believe me a withering wallflower is not a great challenge to them, although it won’t stop them using them for practice but a confident savvy individual is just the challenge they are looking for.

These people know what they are doing, they have been at this game for years honing their skills. No doubt they began as clumsy amateurs but by now they are skilled professionals. Unless you have been a victim and so are wise to their game it is well worth a little research to understand what they want and how they operate in order to avoid falling into their game.

So how do you avoid turning down Mr/Miss Right for fear they may be a player? Very simple

  • life is a compromise, every relationship whether it be romantic, friendship or with family can only be successful if you all compromise. The compromise may be over something seemingly insignificant like preference for sun over snow holidays, red over white wine or taste in music but somewhere in getting to know them you should say to yourself “well I prefer …. but I can compromise on that”. If you meet someone on a dating site that is just so perfect for you there simply is no reason to compromise on anything then run like hell for the hills, they are a player.
  • Mr/Miss Right will be very human. They will have a hair out of place, tell a bad joke, snort when they laugh or drop their fork during dinner. Not so the player, they calculate every move and never put a foot wrong.
  • Mr/Miss Right will be interested in your friends and family, they will remember that you prefer white to red wine and will ask your opinions (remembering the answers). For players dating is all about them and only them.
  • A player is very reluctant to make firm plans for the future, I don’t mean getting married type plans but a concert next month or attending a birthday party in September, if they make plans with you then they may miss a better offer. A player is also very unlikely to attend anything like a friends birthday party with you as they will not be the star attraction. Mr/Miss Right will be delighted when you invite them and make firm plans for the date.
  • Real people will talk about their friends, not in a casual way but in a detailed personal way, whereas players have a little black book overflowing with acquaintances but very few meaningful close friends.

There is an excellent article by Pamela Bailey called Spotting the Player in the Online Dating Game over at associated content.

Here is an article on the Pleasures and Perils of dating a player.

Love Tips - Dating dilemmas – Dealing with Jealousy

Dealing with irrational jealousy can be a destructive process, particularly in a newly formed relationship. Jealousy is a natural human emotion and one we often cannot control.
A debate regarding this subject is currently going on in my sites forum about the difference between healthy and unhealthy levels of jealousy. Jealousy is called the green eyed MONSTER for a reason.

A certain degree of jealousy from our partner can be flattering, it shows they care about us but when it gets out of control without good reason it can be very self destructive and may well end your relationship completely.

Can we control our feelings of jealousy and can we even recognise when those feelings are out of control? Like the drunk that ‘must’ drink but refuses to admit to themselves that they have a problem, are chronically jealous people unable to recognise that their behaviour is destructive?

I would like to share an excellent example of how jealousy can destroy not only a relationship but also how it can effect your partners self esteem, my thanks to Jan for her permission to publish her comments.

“Sometimes a persons own insecurities and how they feel about themselves causes them to feel negative emotions – ie if a person genuinely feels ugly, no amount of compliments about how they look will change their perception of themselves; this can be to a greater or lesser degree … ie a teenager may feel fat – no matter how much friends or relatives reassure the teenager – they eat less and less … they constantly look in the mirror and see a fat person looking back at them; this becomes an illness … an obsessive eating disorder. At this extreme – the individual involved cannot be helped by friendly reassurance or ‘positive’ feedback from people close to them.

The same applies to many areas of a persons psychological make-up – a person who finds it impossible to feel good about themselves can find it equally impossible to believe that they are worthy of love; this may be a mild insecurity that does indeed respond to reassurance … or it can be a deeper insecurity that will be a great burden to them and will manifest itself in a number of ways – jealousy – possessiveness – depression – and will have a detrimental effect on the relationship they are in… their partner, after continually trying to reassure them, and finding no improvement – will start to retreat. Being the partner of someone who does not trust you and watches your every move and needs constant boosting of their ego becomes very wearing and stretches ones patience to its limits. A ‘High maintainence’ relationship like this soon loses it appeal. In a normal, healthy relationship, the mutual reasurances and positive input strengthen the bond between the couple.
However, if one or both of the people involved are suffering from deeper emotional insecurities it is not so simple and the more they reassure each other, the more reassurance is needed … it becomes a destructive relationship.

For example — Tim does not feel good about himself (for whatever reason) and he drinks a lot to help boost his confidence; his partner, Jane, is an attractive lady, confident, hardworking and popular. She thinks the world of Tim and has eyes only for him. He, however, because of his feelings of low self esteem, finds it difficult to accept that someone like Jane truly loves him. He is suspicious of her every move – he gets angry if she speaks to anyone of the opposite sex, he rings her 6 times a day … he over reacts if she is late in from work … Jane wants him to be happy; she repeatedly tells him how much she loves him. She starts to avoid any conversations with men in the pub or out socially. She finds herself looking at the floor in order to avoid being accused of ‘looking at a man’ – She starts to ring Tim as soon as she sets of from work to put his mind at rest … she is feeling the strain of his constant interrogation of her but because she loves him she puts every effort into keeping the peace. However, she starts to feel insulted at his lack of trust in her …. she has never done anything to warrant this constant attack on her faithfulness to Tim … he starts to make her feel that she must be some sort of slut … does she really give Tim the impression that she is ‘up for it’ and is not to be trusted? She finds her self esteem is slowly depleting … she feels anxious about what she wears (is she dressing like a tart?’ )…. anxious about wearing make-up ‘Is she courting male attention?’ and before she knows it, she is in a relationship where she feels every day she is walking on eggshells trying to keep Tim from getting angry. She has stopped going out with friends (Tim interrogates her upon her return) … she has stopped enjoying socialising with Tim (as soon as he has had a few drinks he starts being unpleasant and accuses her of flirting or ‘eyeing up’ some bloke in the pub )…
Jane is half the person she used to be … despite all the effort she put into the relationship, despite all her reassurances, the love, the tenderness… Tim has become worse. Jane now has low self esteem … she feels unworthy of being loved …”

Jealousy in a relationship is more often than not about your own self esteem, not about the actions of your loved one. However they are your loved one, why would you want someone you love to feel bad about themselves, why would you want to be the cause of their low self esteem. Of course you wouldn’t and if you could control your jealousy you would see the effect it is having on someone you love.

If you have a jealousy problem the first step is to admit that your jealousy is a personal issue and something that is both destructive to you and your partner. For help on recognising and dealing with jealousy please check out the links below, they may just save your relationship.

Truth About Deception offers advice about recognising and dealing with your jealous feelings.

It is not only ladies that check mobile phones, go through pockets and throw a fit the moment their partner glances at someone from the opposite sex. has an excellent article offering Top 10: Ways to deal with jealousy it is worth a read if you have a problem keeping your jealousy under control.

Jealousy can get out of control, so if you are aware that you are acting in an unhealthy jealous way but feel unable to control it yourself then please visit your doctor and ask to be referred to a psychologist. That doesn’t mean you are weak, mad or a bad person, it simply means you have an emotion that you are finding hard to deal with. Imagine how good your self esteem, life and relationship could be if you could rid yourself of your irrational jealousy.

If you are in a relationship with a jealous partner and are not behaving in a way that should result in jealousy then try to talk to them, read about jealousy and what causes that level of jealousy to emerge. Urge your partner to seek help for the sake of you both, whether that is through a self help programme or a professional. However do not allow their irrational emotion to cause your self esteem to falter, this is a ‘them’ issue and no amount of trying to change on your part is going to stop their need for constant reassurance or feelings of jealousy.

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