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Archive for the ‘Relationships’ Category

Apologies for being MIA. I’ve been busy and the blog went to the back burner! Anyway, I had an interesting conversation with two friends of mine about dating and winter. If you live in a place with seasons, winter is a time when it’s really difficult to go out. It’s cold, you have to schlep a coat with you, said coat gets beer spilled on it at bars…the television and your couch seem like a much more attractive option most nights. As a result, it’s harder to meet someone until spring. Granted, there will be many holiday parties, but on the whole, while you might go out three nights a week in the summer, you’d be lucky to muster the desire to go out once a week when it’s cold.

Thus, the fall becomes your last chance to meet someone and have the budding relationship stick. You can spend all winter being part of a boring couple, instead of dragging yourself out in heels (in the snow!) to try and meet someone to take to that New Year’s Eve party. Granted, I think that would put a lot of pressure on a new relationship, but people really think this way! At least, two of my own friends do.

I agree that you definitely don’t feel like your hottest self during the winter — you’re bundled up, you’ve put on some weight, you’re pale. But like I said before: holiday parties! If you haven’t managed to find someone before Thanksgiving, there are still a bunch of winter events to squeeze yourself into a dress for. Or you could go to Colorado and meet a hot skiing instructor. Or visit the southern hemisphere, where it’s summer. They have Australians there!

Just a few ideas 🙂

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A lot of young parents work in my office. I was talking with one new dad, who I’d say is in his mid-30s, about how sometimes it can be hard to do something life-changing like having a kid when you’re older and more accustomed to your life the way it is.

That got me thinking about my friends in their 20s. For the most part we’re not at the marriage-and-babies phase yet, but the single ones are looking for relationships. As someone who has spent a fair amount of time being single (I’ve never been the serial monogamist), I have to say that when you do meet someone with potential, it’s an adjustment to fit them into your life without leaving your friends feeling neglected. Dating (even casually) is time consuming. You get used to your single routine — gym, dinner with friends, TV shows you watch regularly, happy hours. Suddenly there’s a person you hang out with two or three times a week, someone who gets dibs on at least one of your weekend nights, and the routine goes out the window. It’s what you’ve wanted for a long time, and it’s great, but it’s still a change.

I’ve heard friends say that they want someone who fits into their life, that they aren’t going to chase, that they aren’t going to change for anyone. The thing is, you pretty much have no choice but to change. When you add a boyfriend or girlfriend to your plate, something has to give if it’s going to work. You’re not the only one changing your schedule around, they are too!

I’m a list-maker and calendar-keeper, and I find that helps me juggle my social calendar as best as possible. And I try not to let my schedule get so fixed in place that I can’t make room for a guy. When a guy calls you to make plans and is greeted with a laundry list of all the hobbies you have to pass the time (“Mondays is my knitting class! And on Tuesdays and Thursdays I have yoga! And drinks with the girls on Friday!…Can you do three Wednesdays from now?”), they’ll stop trying and go find some girl who can schedule a date within the week.

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The New York Times ran an article in their real estate section about New York couples who, though they both live within the five boroughs, have a very long trip on the subway (sometimes multiple subways, with a leg on a bus as well) to see each other. It’s like a long distance relationship! In any large city where a decent proportion of the population lives without cars, you’re going to find yourself staying within the confines of a two-mile radius from your apartment. I know this because I have lived in two different large cities with good public transit, and I’ve never owned a car. Most of my good friends live within blocks of me. Unlike many people I know, I get out more because I do a reverse commute to the suburbs. Many of my friends refuse to date anyone outside of very specific geographic boundaries! And single friends who move waaay out into the suburbs have to defend their decisions to those who think they’re committing social suicide. Readers, what are your limits when it comes to how far you’ll travel to date someone?

So, what’s a person to do when it takes an hour to get home from your S.O.’s neighborhood? Today I came upon the perfect solution: the Walk of Shame Kit. (Or I guess you could just meet in the middle.) Either way, the Walk of Shame Kit would make a hilarious gift for your female friends who pick up guys in every bar. We all know someone like that.

Really, I just wanted to work the kit into a blog posting.

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Hello, my lovelies. I took some time off from blogging during Rosh Hashanah (shana tovah to my Jewish readers!) but now I’m back! And I return inspired by a conversation I had with a guy I know — let’s call him B — and also inspired by something I’ve been going through.

We’ve all been on either, or both, sides of this story. Two people meet and go out a few times. One would like to take it slow, possibly see other people, and the other thinks, “they’ll do!” and latch on like a parasite until the other person commits. Well, maybe they don’t literally latch on, but the reek of desperation is evident. B told me about how he tends to like to take his sweet time getting to know a girl before he commits, and if the girl seems to be in a rush so as not to “waste her time” with him, he backs away. If he told me this even three months ago, I would have scoffed. Love is a battlefield, why wait too long and risk watching a girl you like date someone else who beat you to asking her out? You have to lock it in! But I’m beginning to think B’s onto something.

I’ve gone out a few times with a guy who seems to be way more into me than I am into him. I suspect I fit into his mental list of things he looks for in a girl, and he thought, “she’ll do!” and has been perusing me valiantly ever since. This should be exactly what I want, right? A nice guy is showing interest! I know where I stand with him! And yet, I found myself shutting down. I sensed desperation, and a false sense of closeness on his part. Not one to take the passive-aggressive route, I called him and told him plainly what I had been thinking, and to my surprise, he took it really well. So, he’s getting another chance!

Based on these conversations and my recent experience, the best advice I can give is this: Take your time. If you’re desperate, it will show. There’s always another potential date out there, so don’t think this is your last chance. You’ll blow it if you come on too strong.

Lesson #2: Taking criticism well will work in your favor.

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Read it here.

What I find interesting is that this article tells you to listen to your intuition. Simple advice, isn’t it? But so many of us don’t. That little voice in your mind, or that nagging feeling in the pit of your stomach, will not steer you in the wrong direction. If something’s telling you a relationship isn’t good, listen. The rest of your body tends to realize things much sooner than your heart.

Another good line from this article: “People who have great relationships don’t spend very much time talking about them to others.” True story! I can tell when a friend of mine has met someone good when I ask “Hey, how’s [significant other]?” and all they have to respond with is “They’re great!” before changing the subject to the fact that the Mad Men season premiere is next week. It’s when I ask and they launch into this long speech filled with rationalizations that I see the doubt in their eyes.

So, the takeaways: Listen to your gut, and the more you need to analyze about your relationship, the worse it’s probably going.

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Rant!

What is up with people who are always in a relationship? I even knew a girl who was right back in one after breaking an engagement. Don’t these people have dry spells? Where are they meeting dates? Can I follow them around for a week and see how they operate?

Just a thought.

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Here’s an oldie but goodie from Slate: The Eligible-Bachelor Paradox: How economics and game theory explain the shortage of available, appealing men

So, the assumed lack of men who are good catches, according to this article, is that the good ones get caught earlier, while the awkward ones stay single. As for women, the greater of a catch they are, the longer they hold out for perfection. So, all that’s left, after awhile, are women who think they’re amazing, and awkward men.

That article pointed to this one: Marry Him! The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough

I think the title is self-explanatory. Anyway, am I telling you to settle? To marry the first person to come along? No, not necessarily. If you have misgivings about someone, you sure as hell shouldn’t marry them. But maybe don’t be unreasonably picky, and don’t think you’re so amazing that no man will ever measure up. Because while you’re there, being supposedly amazing, nice guys are marrying other women.

Interesting point of view in these articles. Food for thought!

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