Wednesday, February 2, 2011

"Courting and Finances"

  The initial phase of a relationship can be extremely exciting.  Activities usually include things like dining, trips, movies, museums and shows.  However, these things can be very costly and may even "cost" your relationship. 
  In the courting phase of a relationship it is customary that the "MAN" pays.  Yet, when does the courtship end and the partnership begin?  It is really more or less up to the two people who are dating.  Every couple is different and moves at a different pace depending on how much you see each other.
  While men need to pay close attention to a woman's need to be attended to when it comes to the initial courting period, women also need to be sensitive to what a man's limitations may be in things like dining out.  Communication is key in establishing what is to be expected and to "IGNORE"  or not have the "TUFF CONVERSATIONS" about what is affordable will sabotage your relationship at one point or another.
  Bottom line is a man who is "cheap" is not attractive and a woman who is a "taker" is certainly not OK!  Be sensitive to one another and have a good time.  Being creative by cooking at home, taking day trips that are within your budget and bringing your own snacks to a movie are all more affordable options when you are dating.  In a perfect world romances would never be tangled up in finances, but in the world we live in, it's about having fun and having realistic expectations for your significant other.

Monday, January 31, 2011


  Congratulations you are in a relationship!  You have made the effort to meet a lot of people and now the "boyfriend" has finally arrived.  However, this is only the beginning of a journey that will keep evolving.  Just because you have someone in your life doesn't mean that your life STOPS.  Remember that you have a built a WHOLE life before he showed up and maintaining your interests is part of having a healthy and solid relationship with him and with yourself.  Taking care of yourself in cultivating friendships, career, family and outside activities are still as important as when you were single. 

If you are in a healthy relationship , you will find that balancing your personal lifestyle is a breeze.  It's a wonderful thing to spend a lot of time with your boyfriend, yet you will find that if you don't do the things that make you happy, your relationship could suffer.  The "honeymoon" phase of a new relationship comes and goes in a flash.  Making your life interesting and full plays a vital role in making your relationship more vibrant.

 Remembering your friendships are imperative.  Keep growing your relationships with your single friends.  Just because you are in a relationship and some of your friends may be single doesn't mean that you can't continue to hang out with your girlfriends.  I am sure your new found love has friends that he wants to catch up with and making the time to see your friends will make you feel good too!  Of course, going out with couples is another wonderful idea as well because being around other healthy couples and being social adds more sizzle to your love life. Being social and spending time with your "beau"  will keep your relationship in check. 

Keeping your personal goals in line at work is also imperative.  Staying focused on the job can sometimes be challenging when entering a new relationship, but you will find that the more you succeed at work and taking care of your responsibilities will help you stay balanced and in control with a new man in  your life.  Remember that your life is still your life and developing your career is part of what will ultimately make "you" happy at the end of the day. 

Never forget the hobbies!  If you went to the gym before, stay active!  If you took tango lessons before you met your guy, keep dancing!  All of these things is why your special guy fell in love with you in the first place.  Finding your "ZEN" in a relationship will secure and promote your relationship with him and with yourself in the future.  Keep loving yourself and he will love you MORE!

Friday, January 28, 2011

"Dating the Dads"

  Deciding to plunge into a relationship with a man who has children is never an easy decision.  Not only are you dating the guy but you are also in a relationship with the kids (and possibly the x-wife.)
  The advantage to dating a good father is that he most likely is a caretaker, which works to your benefit because he might be more sensitive to your needs.  However, on the flip side, a man with a family will have to divide himself between you, the kids and his job. 
  Usually this dynamic works better when the woman has children too because a woman with kids will be more empathetic to a divorced family man.  Yet, you would be surprised to hear that most "dating dads" prefer to date women without kids.  Most of these guys love their children but enjoy the ability to go out and focus on their careers.  Seeing their family at whatever schedule is worked out, gives them the freedom to enjoy their independence.  In some cases they won't want to take on a woman with children because it limits their ability to feel free and they will have to take on the father role with the woman's kids. 
  If you are single girl without children getting into a relationship with a "Dad," it is best to be sure that this man is secure emotionally and financially. Having a balanced and healthy relationship in a world where "you" will always be compromising on some level is the only way to have a happy life together.
   Go in with your "eyes open" and never make excuses for anything that doesn't make you feel 100 percent comfortable.  Remember that you are "baggage-free" (as far as having no kids :D) and need to see if you can fully fit into his world.  My advice is to spend time with the children, if you are at that point.  It is the only way you will ever know if you are capable of handling a man and his kids.
 Ultimately deciding that you can't date with a man with children doesn't make you a failure.  It's about recognizing who you are, your desires and your limitations.  The more you get to know yourself brings you closer to the person you are supposed to be with and you should be congratulated on knowing what you want!  XO!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Playing it "Cool" VERSUS becoming a "Door Matt."

   There is a fine line between playing it "cool"  and allowing men to take the upper hand in an abusive fashion.  Setting a standard at the beginning of any relationship is essential when discovering a potential love interest.   In the dating world holding yourself to a high standard will not only let the other person know what you deserve, but will eliminate the drama out of a questionable situation.  Don't be "shocked"  by mixed signals, rather take your power back and control things in a dignified manner.
  In a perfect world, boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl, they date, get married and have a family.  No longer conforming to society, single men and women are beginning to define who they are and what they want out of life regardless of being in a relationship.  This nontraditional standard leaves a lot of room for interpretation.  The rules, when it comes to dating, no longer apply and more then ever, living up to your expectations for yourself are critical.  It sets the tone for how you take care of your body, heart and soul and how men will ultimately treat you.  There is no more time nor room, no matter how much you desire to be in a relationship, for anyone to cross a line where your needs are not met. 
  Winning no longer is defined as getting the "boyfriend" but how you took care of yourself at the end of the day.  Unreturned texts, delayed phone calls and cancelled dates are NOT acceptable.   If playing it "cool" no longer feels "cool," close the door and another is sure to open!  XO XO XO

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

"Gay Dating Challenges Parallel Straight Dating Challenges."

  Hi, my name is T.J.  I have known Orli for almost a decade now and I consider her one of my best friends.  I can't help but to feel that we have so much in common when it comes to dating even though Orli is a straight female and I am a gay male.  Many times the stories seem to relate, just the genders and same sex dynamics are different.   I wanted to add my perspective as a gay male dating in today’s world.   Looking for a partner, gay or straight, there is the “GOOD”, the “BAD” and the “IN-BETWEEN!” I am contributing to Orli’s blog to shed light on the dating struggles gay men face on a daily basis.   NYC is a tuff place to meet men whether you are gay or straight. 
  When I "came out,"  very late I might add, I thought the dating world would be my oyster. Here I am this young, in shape, masculine, athletic, smart guy and it would be a piece of cake finding someone.  Well boy, was I wrong!  So what did I do? I internalized it and kept saying, "What's wrong with me?”
  I have met numerous men and gone on many dates in the past ten years. Gay guys have endless issues too. Some are self loathing homosexuals. Some are in the closet petrified the door will open. Some are married to women and don't tell you till the 5th or 6th date. That one is always a “doozy.”   "Oh by the way, I have a wife and 3 kids, hope you are OK with that," is the typical response I get from a married guy looking for gay companionship.   Drug problems, alcoholism, HIV positive or "status" unknown! These are other hidden demons that don't come out till around the 4th or 5th dates. It almost seems like as gay men we feel such deep seeded guilt about who we are that we find different ways to abuse ourselves physically, emotionally or mentally.
  It was only after my recent birthday party that I came to a realization. I had been on a few dates with a great (or so I thought) guy. He seemed to have so much promise.  He was a young and handsome doctor. He seemed really into me. I said to myself, “OK, let me invite this guy to my birthday party to meet my friends.”   Well the night went awesome.  However, I never heard from that guy again after that night. No return texts, phone calls or explanations!
  Puzzled????? Damn right!
  I have decided the best thing is to put 100 percent of yourself into your true friends, family and those that truly love you. When the right person comes along, it will happen. Until that time comes, I will not beat myself up. Not everything is always your fault. "To thine own self be true!"
Straight, gay, male or female all face the same challenges while dating in NYC.   Hang in there!  Things happen for a reason! :-)