I remember in high school the very distinct feeling that I would never understand men. The boys I had dated long-term in both high school and college sent me such conflicting messages that I truly believed men simply didn’t have emotions. Not like women did, anyway. After all, how can you tell someone you love them one day, and then blow them off to party with your friends the next? It seemed I was always waiting to hear how the guy felt, what he thought, and where he deemed our relationship was going. Everything was on the guys terms because I cared too much and wanted to work through anything, while they took their time mulling over the pros and cons of being with me. It was frustrating, demoralizing, and exhausting. I remember thinking, how in the world can I sustain a relationship with any man if they aren’t as emotionally invested as I am?!
Luckily, after I graduated college, I met and dated a boy that showed me that not all men are cut from the same cloth. He was sweet, fun, and the first real relationship I had ever had. And thanks to him, my previous philosophy on men being void of emotion completely changed. I realized there would be men in the world that would match my emotional investment, and I learned a few very key insights that helped me continue through the dating world, and end up happily married to my wonderful husband today. Had my mentality not changed on this, I might still be dating in circles right now.
Here is what I want to pass on to women who feel as I did back then.
1. Men need reassurance. I realize now, looking back, that I never really gave any love to my high school old boyfriend. I was brought up that men needed to treat me with respect. I was told they were lucky to be with me, and that I needed to keep them in pursuit. In essence, I just had to “be” in the relationship to make the guy happy and my job ended there. My poor BF brought me flowers, wrote me love notes, and met me after every class. What did I do for him? Complained if he had to stay late at practice, or decided to eat lunch with his friends one day out of the week. Sadly, it didn’t dawn on me until later in life that my job wasn’t to just receive love from a guy, it was to give love to him, too. And that included positive affirmations of my feelings – which I never gave anyone because it was drilled into my head that I was to keep them in hot pursuit at all times. But at some point, the chase has to end for the relationship to really begin.
2. Not all men are created equal. Yes, there are guys out there that are jerks, players, or narcissists, and they do not know how to be in a relationship with anyone. But there are also men that are kind, loving, supportive, yet still strong and masculine. I went into a lot of my younger relationships expecting to be let down and hurt because that is what the guy before and the guy before did. However, assuming this made me defensive and suspicious. In other words, a real joy to be around! I spent a lot of time overreacting to certain situations that warranted no reaction at all because I just assumed all men were the same. If one had wronged me in the past, it was only a matter of time that the current one would too. Letting go of Continue reading
Ask any woman her opinion on the state of dating in this town and unless she’s a 22 year old, 5’11″, 110 lb runway model, she’ll most likely scowl, roll her eyes and give you an emphatic “It’s a cesspool” or “I just returned from freezing my eggs.” Frankly, for my friends in LA to Boston, and Chicago to San Francisco, dating … and I mean dating with the intent to find MR. / MISS RIGHT (not just right now), is about as easy as making apple pie. Following a recipe. In Japanese. If you are French. Why else is the woeful world of the journey to the center of romance a zillion dollar industry? Because it’s hard and WE. NEE.D HELP.
I admit when I was in my most recent serious relationship, I felt no favor toward those who were whirling dervishes in Singledom. Mainly because I’d spent over ten years there, and my friends (and even those whom I’d just met), only lamented on the sad state of men. I’d listen, and then turn to my then boyfriend and say, “Oh, thank goodness we are together. I’d just HATE to be back out there again.” Then real life continued… Since the last time I had a serious boyfriend was years ago, I was out of practice in figuring out how to manage being in a real relationship. By the time I had figured how to get back in the saddle and ride with out falling off, it was over. So now I get to return to the other side. The dark side. Now I am looking to remember just how to DATE.
Enter Jess McCann, dating coach, author of now two books, one of which is being re-relased Feb 5th. The first time I laid eyes on this blond, tall, slender beauty, I wasn’t totally convinced I’d be able to learn much from her. It was years ago when I was a dating queen, and she seemed to be too much “pretty girl-next-door” type. Too sweet. Then I read her book “You Lost Him at Hello” and was like, um, what a smart woman! Fast forward to today, when I realize her new book was going to be launching, and I was suddenly single. Hello UNIVERSE.
My first question is, where are these girls buying their clothes from and why do they all want to be mistaken for strippers? Continue reading
OMG. I’m engaged. I know people get engaged everyday but for me this is truly extraordinary. I know I probably shouldn’t sound so shocked, in fact, some of you may even wonder how I can so confidently advise other women on how to find and keep a man if I didn’t think I was going to do it myself – but let me explain. I was never that girl growing up that dreamed about her wedding day. I never draped a pillow case over the back of my head and paraded around the living room pretending to be a bride. My approach to love has always been more… realistic. Which in some ways is good. It led me to the discovery that sales techniques could be applied to dating, which both empowered me and allowed me to have healthy, positive relationships. It led to writing my book, “You Lost Him at Hello” and that, of course, led to a satisfying career as a dating coach. Those are the positives. The negatives would be that I realized that I was a stubborn, critical, and abnormally picky person. I realized that relationships, no matter how symbiotic, are going to always include compromise. Most importantly, I realized “’til death do us part” is a long, long commitment to make. The truth is, I was very comfortable telling everyone else how to get married, but I wasn’t sure I wanted to do it myself…
I remember every moment about the night I first met Erik. I remember talking to him for all of thirty seconds when this light bulb went off in my head. There is something about this guy, I thought. After knowing him only a week, I texted my best friend in San Diego and told her, “I think I just found my future husband.”
You know how most women say, ‘My husband is nothing like who I thought I would marry.’ Well, it’s completely eerie to say this, but Erik is exactly who I had been looking for my whole life. It’s as though I concocted him in my head and God said, “Here you go!” I told myself many years ago that I would roll solo through life rather than settle, and quite frankly when I hit thirty, I thought that would be my path. But in January of 2008 I took some advice that changed that plan.
How I found the love of my life Continue reading