The Advice You Give

The Advice You Give

When I started my blog 8 years ago, it was because I wanted to work through some issues. A girl might look like a Power Ranger but I need help. What I never expected but has turned into a happy surprise, is my ability to give advice to others. You’ve heard that doctors make the worst patients. The same goes for those who write dating blogs. I may not always listen to my own advice, but the advice I give is darn good!

A few days ago, my college best friend called me. She needed some advice about whether to pursue dating a guy seriously or to let him go. We caught up for a few hours and I realized very quickly, a lot of the advice I give, sounds scarily…like my mother. I have to laugh especially since I don’t have kids. I don’t have many moments where I can go to my mom and say “I get it now”. It does, however happen several times when giving advice.

The advice that I give comes from a place that splits my head and my heart. Most of the time, when my friends come to me and I hear their concern, my first response is something that I’ve heard my mother say countless times, “It sounds like you know what to do, you just have to do it.” And in classic mother fashion, sometimes the thing we know we NEED to do, is the thing we don’t WANT to do. But why is that?

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Because deep down, even though we often seek out the advice of others, we already know what we NEED to do. Sometimes, we want to even be talked out of those things. We have our mind made and know what we WILL do. But hearing advice gives us insight one way or another.

I’m always happy to be a sounding board for my friends. Often, they do the same for me. And I will continue to give advice, whether they listen to me or not. Just remember, the advice you give is often the advice you need to take. Be a better patient, then a doctor!

2019- The Year of “Don’t Repeat”

2019- The Year of “Don’t Repeat”

I can’t stand New Year’s Resolution. Full disclosure, because I can never keep them. Who can? You make grand plans to stick by a resolution and by mid-January, you realize that that pound cake won’t eat its self. So instead of resolutions I try what I like to call “Don’t Repeat”.

Rather than a goal or a resolution I want to keep but know I won’t, I focus on things that brought me no joy or success and focus on not repeating them. The classic “Learning from Ones Mistakes” mantra.  I’ll admit, I am the Queen of screwups. And I wear my mistakes with a badge of honor. But even someone like myself has to stop and make an effort to not make the same mistakes again, hence “Don’t Repeat”.

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So if you are like me, and need a checklist to get you into 2019, might I suggest my list of 2019 “Don’t Repeats”

  • Tinder Dinner Dates- Sure, it gets you out of the house and yea, it’s a free meal. But it’s never just dinner, and it’s never worthwhile in the end. Let’s just say “Wanna meet for a drink and maybe make out?” I mean, let’s put the rules of the game out there before we enter the field.

 

  • Concern for your Ex- Yes, you have a civil relationship with them. There is no following on Social Media or even a saved phone number. And maybe they went through a hurricane. That doesn’t mean you have to be the one who reaches out because you were “concerned”. You’re not. Not really at least. You want to know that THEY know the f*&^ed up. Surprise, surprise…they still don’t

 

  • Looking Cute for Others- BITCH!!!!! Make the winged liner as strong as your personality and as sharp as your tongue for no one else, but yo DAMN self! Trust me…it won’t go unnoticed!

 

  • Cheating on Your Expectations- Earlier in the year I talked about how a friend was trying to set me up. When she asked me what I was looking for in a guy, I gave her a rather detailed top 5. She thought it was shocking and for a moment, I  began to doubt whether those things were really necessary. Then it hit me. If I had found any guy in 2018 remotely close to the characteristics in my top 5, I wouldn’t still be looking. This isn’t to say that my expectations are high, but I know what I want. And in 2019, rather than thinking what you are looking for isn’t realistic, ask yourself if it’s realistic to waste your time on what you AREN’T looking for.

 

  • Losing Sight on Me- Ladies, we all do it. We meet that guy, we click, we start dating and then we morph into another person. We know we’re doing it. Our friends, family and co-workers see that we’re doing it? But why? What do we get out of it, except an emergency trip to our therapist on New Year’s Eve. We know what makes us great. And we also know what makes us a hot F*&^ing mess! So why not accept that and accept that the person who will ultimately be your right match will love both…equally. Let’s stop playing the charade of the perfect hostess, the girl who’s eyebrows always match or the super excited hockey fan (Bitch, you know we ain’t ever been to a hockey game). Instead let’s take this kick ass chick into 2019 ready to make mistakes, learn from them, kiss a lot of frogs, meet a prince, challenge herself, fight for what she deserves and changes the attitudes of others around her with her smile. It’s not impossible, so let’s show the world how it’s done!
What I Need- My top 5 guy requirements

What I Need- My top 5 guy requirements

I love my friends. I love that they try to so hard to see me happy. Whether it’s in my professional life or my personal life, they go to great lengths to see me happy. One such friend however, decided to do the thing I hate the most….set me up on a date. I was recently talking to a newly engaged co-worker who asked me what I was looking for a in a man. These two situations had me thinking, “What DO I want in a man?”

When I was in college, I wrote a list of 100 things I wanted in a Dream Guy. My thought was, he really would be the perfect guy for me, if he had all 100 things that I wrote on my list. Over the next few years, I would go back and look at that list. Mainly in horror at what I thought was a NEED. But mostly out of amazement, that my needs changed drastically.

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Just like our palette, fashion sense and choice of movies, we get older and our needs change. 21 year old Desiree was so focused on what she wanted from a guy. But a few years older, a divorce, a few breakups and one heart ache, my needs have definitely changed. So to answer the question asked by several of my well meaning friends, here’s what I need in a guy…my top 5 requirements.

  1. Laughter- I am funny. No seriously, I am. Hilarious. I’m silly, goofy, slightly inappropriate and sarcastic AF. That kind of humor is not for everyone. When I think about guys from my past what sticks out about several of them, was their ability to make me laugh. Laughter is the best medicine and in some cases, the best way to end and argument. For me, if you can make me laugh, it means you don’t take yourself (or me) too seriously. It says, you’re up for an adventure and fun.
  2. Chemistry- Let’s be honest. There has to be a spark. And I hate to admit it, but I get bored easily. If two people don’t have chemistry, what will be the thing that keeps the passion going? I’m not saying that I need to see you walk in the door and jump you before you cross the floor. What I am saying is, you should feel that butterfly in your stomach whenever you see me, because I assure you, I will feel the same.
  3. Height- I know this is random but it’s a big physical thing for me. I wear heels. High heel shoes, heeled boots and I may own a few pair of Louboutin’s. I NEED you to be taller than me. For one, pictures are so awkward when you’re not. Two, heels or not, if I look down to kiss you I feel like an odd freak of nature. Every girl loves the feeling of standing on her tippy toes to kiss a guy. That, and I believe  the guy equivalent of girls doing creative shots to hide their weight, are guys showing photos of themselves sitting in cars. No sir, I need to see you standing next to a small elephant!
  4. Education- I recently went on a date with a sweet young gent. When he asked me how my day was, I replied that it was fine, but that I did have some H.R. stuff to deal with, which is never fun. His reply was “What’s H.R?” Now I’m not saying that you need a Harvard education, what I am saying is, you need to be able to have an educated and insightful conversation with me. And again, let me stress, an intelligent conversation can be anything. I can just as easily debate the need for universal health care as I can why the “ManBearPig” episode of South Park is stellar television.
  5. Passion- At first glance, I’m sure you’re thinking I mean in the bedroom. Well…that too. But I mean more than physical passion. I have dated men who were passionate about comics, the environment, their children or the military. Their passion was evident in everything they did and believed in. It was a part of what made me fall for them. Passion is about having that unyielding dedication to someone or something. Something to believe in. Something to fight for. In any good relationship, you want someone to believe in you and you want someone who will fight for you. What you need is a man with passion.

Looking at this very small list, makes me wonder what college aged Desiree would think. Would you she laugh at what I consider are my top needs? Or would she argue that “Keanu Reeves” is still a valid requirement for the perfect guy. Not a guy LIKE Keanu, I meant, Keanu himself. Either way, sometimes what we need to do is think long and hard about what it is that we may NEED in a partner. Often times, it speaks to what we are lacking in ourselves.

Letting Go- Girl Move On!

Letting Go- Girl Move On!

I am not ashamed to admit that I see a therapist. Often. I think more people should. But that’s not what this post is about. After going through all of my basic history and running my therapist up to speed about my life, I proceeded to spend about 10 minutes talking about my ex. You know the one. The one that plays on an endless loop of mental memories of good times, bad times and a million “What If’s”.

Then I had a moment of, well honestly..F*&%ING STOP! What we do when we gravitate to the past or we hold on to those amazing former memories, is feel sad that we don’t have that. But as I am reminded by my mother almost on weekly basis, we actually have to be thankful for them. There is something to learn about the loss of love. There is something to be grateful for it. And more importantly, there is something that you need to identify in order to not make the same mistakes again.

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Even as I write this, I have to laugh. It’s probably one of the dating lessons that I find the hardest even at my age to really learn. But that’s the beauty about lessons. Just like when you were a kid at school, it took you a while to learn something. You had to practice. There were reviews. Trial and Error. Maybe a practice test.

So just think of those pasts heartbreaks as the ultimate practice test. When the test is over, good or bad, there’s nothing more you can do. And sure, for you snooty little “A” students who would do extra credit just to get two more points, ok, good for you! For the rest of us “C” students, we know. That ‘ish was done. And though we may have wished it went better, we just have to hope that the next test gives us a better result.

The next test in your life may be your “A”. It may be easier than the others. And you may find that this is the one, you were meant to work so hard to have  and learn from, in your life.

The Last Great….

The Last Great….

After a chain of recent hilarious events, I’ve found myself thinking a lot of “The Last Great”…

When you look back at your dating life….the good, the bad, or potentially questionable, if you’re like me, there are a few bright shining moments. I like to call them “The Last Great…”. Whether it was the last great kiss, date, dance or romance, the collection of ray of hopeful sunshine moments from your dating history is enough to remind us all, that  your future romance is out there. And maybe more “Last Greats…” will lead to your “First Real…”.

“The Last Great Kiss”

I wrote an article about this particular kiss a while back. A first date, which lead to a walk around my lovely little hometown, and a kiss that seemed to last forever. What made it “The Last Great Kiss” was simple, I haven’t felt that kind of connection since that kiss. And I’m not talking about a sexual connection, it was something deeper than that. And it felt REAL. It’s funny how we take for granted things that aren’t in front of us, or are on our cell phones and laptops. I mean a connection where it’s just you and the person in front of you. And even if that moment never turns into a relationship, “The Last Great Kiss” was a real moment, and one I will always enjoy.

“The Last Great Morning”

I love New Orleans. I have a few sad but mostly amazing memories there. One of my favorite memories, was “The Last Great Morning” I had with a guy I dated a few years back. We got to sleep in late, something I rarely ever do. It was one of those rainy mornings in NOLA and after a pretty late night the evening before, all I needed was coffee. What I got, was a living room filed with small little white lights, John Coltrane playing in the background and freshly pressed coffee. Oh, did I mention my BF at the time was in the kitchen making the most amazing cheese crepes. We spent the rest of the morning listening to jazz, cuddled on the couch, with the NOLA rain in the background. I haven’t had another morning like that since…

 

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“The Last Great Phone Call”

This is going to seem like a random one, but hear me out. Years ago, before Snapchat and FaceTime, and wayyyyyyy before cell phones and Instant Messaging, guys and girls would spend hours on the phone talking. It’s how you knew you had a real connection and it’s also how you knew a guy really liked you. Fast forward to about 30 years later and those days are long gone. Even I have to admit, I’m not a fan of long phone calls and I’d much rather text than talk, but this guy got me on a special evening. And our phone call lasted 3 hours. We both had to work the next morning but that didn’t seem to bother either of us. We talked about everything under the sun and daydreamed about cozy warm cabins in the North Georgia mountains. We had a great first/only date which also provided some lovely moments. Every once in a while, I think about that call. I wonder what a night in the mountains would be like with a handsome, motorcycle riding, blog writing gentleman who doesn’t drink. Well, maybe my charm, a fireplace and a 30 year old scotch can change that.

“The Last Great Sex”

Let’s be honest, this is the one you all came here for. And it’s the one I’ve had the hardest time trying to pin down. Mainly because there are several gents who will read this thinking it’s them. For all of you curious handsome guys, I do apologize. Originally, I wanted to write this entire article about “The Last Great Sex” and though there has been some great, good, amazing sex in the past few years, I pondered something else. Am I really talking about the last great sex act or something more? And to be honest, I AM talking about something more. I’ve spoken about connection a few times in this article and I really feel that’s what “The Last Great Sex” is about…Connection.  Great sex can be great because of chemistry, music, carnal matching, the perfect thread count and countless other reasons. And while you know I am never one to NOT gossip about great sex, if what I am speaking on is the “The Last Great Sexual Connection”, then my dear reader, I have to be honest…it hasn’t happened yet.

So with that said, and to whomever is reading this pondering if it WAS him, take comfort in knowing…you gave me a great reference point for finding my “The Last Great”. And check back again kiddlets, because I’m sure it will be a great story to tell!

Does the “Dream Guy” exist?

Does the “Dream Guy” exist?

I know….the title is hefty. It’s also equal parts fantasy and bullshit. B.S. because you don’t ever hear guys pinning for the “Dream Girl”. And I’m not here to judge that societal norm. I’m here to talk about my “Dream Guy”, and to ask the age old question….does he really exist? No really…does he?

As I often do, I sit here with a great scotch, post a slew of bad dating decisions to bring you these nuggets of wisdom. The “Dream Guy” or “Girl” isn’t just a dream…they are the ideal. They are the fantasy that you hold up to every random bar hookup and questionable Tinder match. For me, my dream guy is equal parts Chris D’Elia, Bill Clinton, Idris Elba and Mr Darcy from “Pride & Prejudice”. Do you see a trend? No! That’s why he’s a “Dream Guy”. Not gonna lie…sprinkle a bit of Christian Grey and I may marry him on the spot.

So what makes him a dream? What makes him the fantasy that so far my reality has not been able to create? It’s simple. The “Dream Guy” is a blend of fantasy, unrealistic expectations, tequila induced daydreams and hollywood cliches…and I am 100% in the hunt for him and in NO way ashamed to admit that.

For me there are some serious aspects of the “Dream Guy” that from now on, I will no longer entertain a half hearted dating life, in order to pass the time until his arrival.

My “Dream Guy” in a nutshell:

  • is family guy. He loves his family and friends and their input means the world to him. He’s not a mama’s boy, but the woman who truly holds his heart is her.
  • is a lover of all things libations. I understand there are men who don’t drink. And I respect that. I also hope that you respect, that on our first date, if you can’t navigate yourself around a scotch menu, then you have no purpose for me.
  • is a class clown. The kiss may be the first physical thing that intrigues me about a guy, but making me laugh is the first thing that will lead to said kiss. And at the end of the day, 30 years from now, I want you to make me laugh just like you did on our first date.
  • is a protector. He is able to stand up for me and stand by me. The guy who can defend the occasional glance when people question an interracial couple, but who can also hold me after a 12 hour day at work when I feel like a failure.
  • is an amazing cook. You want to get me naked? Make a steak, add a bottle of wine and Coltrane, and I will meet you in the bedroom in an hour.
  • is emotionally available. I can’t believe I have to say this, but um yeah, don’t play with my emotions. I don’t want to be your friend, I don’t want to just screw you, and I don’t want to be your little secret. Bare your fucked up soul and I will do the same. But more importantly, understand that everyone has baggage. But your baggage doesn’t define you.
  • is self assured. Meaning he knows what he wants. He understands his flaws and works hard to do better. Why is this important? Because if I am doing the same, and so should you.
  • and finally he is passionate. And I’m not talking about earth shaking sex. I mean, kisses that lasts minutes. Glances from across the room that make us both blush. Touches that feel warm and tingle from my toes and all up my spine. He is a fire that burns and one that I will move heaven and earth to be near, because he would destroy mountains to be near mine.

 

 

 

36 Questions

36 Questions

I’m sure you have heard of the 36 Questions to Love. If you haven’t, you clearly don’t surf the internet at ungodly late hours like myself, so let me explain. Psychologist Arthur Aron did a study to evaluate creating closeness in an experimental context. Simply put, a set of 36 questions in three sets were given to complete strangers to ask and answer. The questions start simple enough and then become more detailed and personal. After the 36 Questions are answered, the strangers are then asked to look in their partners eyes for 4 minutes. You read that correctly, 4…whole…silent…minutes.

I first came across these 36 Questions a few years back when I was dating a guy that I had been with for over a year. We came to a pretty rough part in our relationship, and I saw the questions as an opportunity to rebuild communication between the two of us. Sadly, we broke up before we could ever answer the questions. Since then, I have always wanted to try them and see what the buzz was about. I found several Youtube videos and articles done by magazines like GLAMOUR, all using complete strangers as the subject.

And since yours truly loves a good challenge, I thought, maybe it was finally time to give this a go. First question: who do I do the 36 Questions with?

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Enter my lovely and handsome test subject, a gentleman I had already been on one date with and had a great time. Bonus: he was familiar with the study and the questions having done them before. Well this should be a breeze then! As stated early, the questions are in 3 sets, each set become more personal. The first set had questions like:

  • Would you like to be famous and it what way?
  • What constitutes a “perfect” day for you?

“This is going to be easy.”, I thought. Since we had already had a nice first date, we were both at ease with the first set of questions. And we also learned a great deal more about each other. But then I should have realized, that things were going to get REAL, real fast. The idea of the questions are not to embarrass your partner, or make them feel uncomfortable. Rather, to get to a more personal layer of the person that you don’t normally see at the stereotypical coffee date with the archaic questions like “So what do you do for fun?” or “You went to UGA? What did you study?” These questions are meant to make both people think, and if you’re lucky, be very honest and perhaps even vunerable.

And that is exactly what happened. Set two had questions like:

  • What is your most terrible memory?
  • How do you feel about your relationship with you mother?

The first question had me discussing a time in my life that I don’t often speak about, and one that was deeply personal. However, I felt a sense of ease in discussing it with my partner and perhaps that was what made it so genuine. We went back and forth talking about our childhood and our views of the world, and soon the questions, though challenging, became more insightful.

The third and final set had questions like:

  • When did you last cry in front of a person? When did you cry alone?
  • Tell your partner something you like about them already?

I was thrilled to get to the final set. Mainly because if I got any more personal with my answers, I would have to invite him to Thanksgiving dinner seeing as how he would practically be family by then. Full disclosure: the last time I cried in front of a person was in fact him, when I answered a question in Set two. And that was when it hit me, the act of sharing something deeply personal with someone who respects you and is humbled by you sharing that information, is a beautiful thing. It brings a different kind of connection with someone- a human connection, just as impactful as an amazing first kiss.

To conclude the 36 Questions, you are to look in your partners eyes for 4 SILENT minutes. Ok, I am a wisecrack, smart ass on a good day. But when I feel uncomfortable or awkward, my level of wisecrackery gets to almost biblical levels. “How the hell am I going to stare at this guy for 4 minutes and NOT say anything.” , I thought. I gave myself an internal pep talk. “Just look at his nose or his eyebrows, don’t stare for the whole 4 minutes, try not to laugh like a hyena and for Gods sake, don’t hum.”

The first few minutes were awkward to say the least. We both had nervous smiles, coupled with my seizure like attempt to not laugh. And then the most amazing and insightful thing happened. Staring became easier. It was like I was looking at a good friend. One who knows me well, but more importantly, had no desire to laugh or judge me. It was at this point, I let my guard down and stared without feeling embarrassed. I set a 4 minute timer on my phone and after 4 minutes, it went off. But we continued to stare at each for an additional two more minutes. 6 minutes of silence and staring. It wasn’t  awkward, or strange and if I am being honest, those last two minutes after the timer went off was my favorite part of the entire experience.

I think we were both amazed to continue holding our gaze. But it was perhaps the most deeply personal and wonderful experience I ever had on a date. The rest of the evening was a fun night out at karaoke and some great Netflix and chill. After the 36 Questions, I can honestly say I am happy that I finally did them and grateful that my partner was so open and kind with his answers. So if you are curious to try them with your significant other or with a stranger, I highly recommend it. Below is a link to the New York Times article where the questions were featured. My advise if you do try them, be open, be honest, enjoy the process and have plenty of wine- you’re going to need it!