Dates from Hell

by Marcia Jedd for Happen Magazine

Want to feel more confident about your past dating blunders? Here are some of the worst dates women have experienced.

1. The discount doctor
Cecily, 38, met a physician at a holiday party. On the first date, he took her to a Japanese restaurant and paid for dinner using a two-for-one coupon. The second date, he took her to the same place… and once again, he used a coupon. “On our third date — which I probably shouldn’t have gone on, but he made me laugh — he conveniently forgot his wallet in his sports car,” recalls Cecily.

2. The guy that couldn’t go the distance
Rhonda, 20, was excited to rent a nice car to drive on her visit with her long-distance boyfriend on his birthday — especially since they hadn’t seen each other in two months. She accompanied him on errands, they saw what he referred to as a “strangler movie,” and later, during dinner at a nice restaurant, he admitted to infidelity and begged for her forgiveness. Rhonda obliged — and then he called the next day and broke things off with her anyway. “That was a total date from hell,” she says… and we agree.

3. The invisible third wheel
Susan, 39, went on a date with a man who couldn’t stop gushing about another woman. “He talked a lot about a lady friend of his, their emotional bond, and he even admitted the woman was married and lived in another country,” she recalls. In fact, he talked about this mystery woman the whole night, much to Susan’s dismay. “It was obvious he was more comfortable with his quasi-fantasy relationship with her than face-to-face dating with me.”

4. The well-suited suitor
Sarah, 33, was impressed when her date Phil told her how much his suit cost. “Later, we were at a nice restaurant when I reached over him to grab a napkin and accidentally spilled the entire glass of shrimp cocktail all over his chest and lap,” she admits, thoroughly embarrassed. Luckily, this one still had a happy ending: Phil did ask Sarah out again.

5. The man who needed no introductions
Mindy, 36, wasn’t excited to go on a second date with one guy. Unfortunately, her gut instincts about him were confirmed when they attended a barbecue together that was hosted by her friends. The two were surprised when they walked into the party and he knew most of the guests — including Mindy’s best friend, who had briefly dated him in the past. “I had too much information on him from my friend’s description of dating him before,” reveals Mindy.

read rest of article at www.happenmag.com
Marcia Jedd is a freelance writer based in Minneapolis.
Her web site is www.marciajedd.com; and she can be contacted there about her writing and writing services

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Do You Want to Avoid Marrying the Wrong Person?

 

This article tells you how to avoid marrying the wrong person.

This article was [in part] inspired by and adapted from a presentation by Rabbi Dov Heller, M.A.
http://muslimvillage.com/2011/ 10/27/…04y9J.facebook

There is a right way and a wrong way to get to know someone for marriage. The wrong way is to get caught up in the excitement and nuance of a budding relationship and in the process completely forget to ask the critical questions that help determine compatibility.

One of the biggest mistakes that many young Muslims make is rushing into marriage without properly and thoroughly getting to know someone. A common myth is that the duration of a courtship is an accurate enough measure of how compatible two people are. The logic follows that the longer you speak with someone, the better you will know them. The problem with that premise is that no consideration is given to how that time is spent. Increasingly, young Muslim couples are engaging in ⿿halal dating,⿝ which is basically socializing with each other in the company of friends and/or family. This includes going out to dinner, watching a movie, playing some sport or other leisure activity, etc. Depending on the family or culture, conversations are either minimal & chaperoned or worse, unrestricted and unsupervised. When you consider these limitations it makes one wonder when exactly, if ever at all, would the critical conversations take place? Unfortunately, for many, the answer is never and they live to suffer the consequences. If you or someone you know is in the ⿿getting to know someone⿝ phase, the following guide offers advice on exactly what to look for and avoid:

1) Do Not Marry Potential: Oftentimes men consider marrying a woman hoping she never changes while a woman considers marrying a man she hopes she can change. This is the wrong approach on both accounts. Don⿿t assume that you can change a person after you⿿re married to them or that they will reach their potential. There is no guarantee, after all, that those changes will be for the better. In fact, it⿿s often for the worse. If you can⿿t accept someone or imagine living with them as they are then don⿿t marry them. These differences can include a number of things such as ideological or practical differences in religion, habits, hygiene, communication skills, etc.

2) Choose Character over Chemistry: While chemistry and attraction are no doubt important, character precedes them both. A famous quote follows, ⿿Chemistry ignites the fire, but character keeps it burning.⿝ The idea of falling ⿿in love⿝ should never be the sole reason for marrying someone; it is very easy to confuse infatuation and lust for love. The most important character traits to look for include humility, kindness, responsibility, & happiness. Here⿿s a breakdown of each trait:

Humility: The humble person never makes demands of people but rather always does right by them. They put their values and principles above convenience and comfort. They are slow to anger, are modest, and avoid materialism.

Kindness: The kind person is the quintessential giver. They seek to please and minimize the pain of others. To know if a person is a giver, observe how they treat their family, siblings, and parents. Do they have gratitude towards their parents for all that they⿿ve done for them? If not, then know that they will never appreciate what you do for them. How do they treat people they don⿿t have to be kind towards (i.e. waiters, sales associates, employees, etc)? How do they spend their money? How do they deal with anger; their own anger and their reaction to someone else⿿s anger?

Responsibility: A responsible person has stability in their finances, relationships, job, and character. You can you rely on this person and trust what they say.
Happiness: A happy person is content with their portion in life. They feel good about themselves and good about their life. They focus on what they have rather than on what they don⿿t have. They very rarely complain.

3) Do Not Neglect The Emotional Needs of Your Partner: Both men and women have emotional needs and in order for a partnership to be successful those needs must be mutually met. The fundamental emotional need of a woman is to be loved. The fundamental emotional need of a man is to be respected and appreciated. To make a woman feel loved give her the three AAAs: Attention, Affection, & Appreciation. To make a man feel loved give him the three RRRs: Respect, Reassurance, & Relief. It is the obligation of each partner to make sure the other is happy and this extends to intimacy as well. As long as each partner is fulfilled by the emotional needs of the other, the intimate relationship will thrive. When a man takes seriously the emotional needs of his wife she will feel more encouraged to fulfill his sexual desires. Likewise, when a woman takes seriously the emotional needs of her husband he will feel more encouraged to give her the affection, love and appreciation she wants from him. Working together in this way encourages both giving and receiving.

4) Avoid Opposing Life Plans: In marriage you can either grow together or grow apart. Sharing a common purpose in life will increase the chance that you will grow together.

You must know what the person is into. In other words, what are they ultimately passionate about? Then ask yourself, ⿿Do I respect this passion?⿝ ⿿Do I respect what they are into?⿝
The more specifically you define yourself, i.e., your values, your beliefs, your lifestyle, the better chance you have of finding your life partner, your soul mate, the one you are most compatible with.
Remember, before you decide who to take along on a trip, you should first figure out your destination.

5) Avoid Pre-Marital Sexual/Physical Activity:

Recognize that there is incredible wisdom in why God has ordered us to refrain from intimacy before marriage; they are to prevent great harms as well as to keep sacred what is the most blessed part of a relationship between a man and a woman.

Aside from the obvious spiritual consequences, when a relationship gets physical before its time, important issues like character, life philosophy, and compatibility go to the wayside. Consequently, everything is romanticized and it becomes difficult to even remember the important issues let alone talk about them.

Intellectual commitment must be established before emotional or sexual commitment.

6) Avoid Lack of Emotional Connection: There are four questions that you must answer YES to:

Do I respect and admire this person? What specifically do I respect and admire about this person?
Do I trust this person? Can I rely on them? Do I trust their judgment? Do I trust their word? Can I believe what they say?
Do I feel Safe? Do I feel emotionally safe with this person? Can I be vulnerable? Can I be myself? Can I be open? Can I express myself?
Do I feel calm and at peace with this person?
If the answer is ⿿I don⿿t know, I⿿m not sure, etc.⿝ keep evaluating until you know for sure and truly understand how you feel. If you don⿿t feel safe now, you won⿿t feel safe when you are married. If you don⿿t trust now, this won⿿t change when you are married!

7) Pay Attention to Your Own Emotional Anxiety: Choosing someone you don⿿t feel safe with emotionally is not a good recipe for a long-lasting and loving marriage. Feeling emotionally safe is the foundation of a strong and healthy marriage. When you don⿿t feel safe, you can⿿t express your feelings and opinions. Learn how to identify whether you are in an abusive relationship. If you feel you always have to monitor what you say, if you are with someone and you feel you can⿿t really express yourself and are always walking on eggshells, then it⿿s very likely you are in an abusive relationship. Look for the following things:

Controlling behavior: This includes controlling the way you act, the way you think, the way you dress, the way you wear your hair/hijab and the way you spend your time. Know the difference between suggestions and demands. Demands are an expression of control and if the demands are implied, than you must do it or there will be consequences. All of these are clear indications of abusive personalities.

Anger issues: This is someone who raises their voice on a regular basis, who is angry, gets angry at you, uses anger against you, uses put downs, and curses at you, etc. You don⿿t have to put up with this type of treatment. Many people who tolerate this behavior usually come from abusive backgrounds. If this is the case with you or someone you know, get help right away. Deal with those issues before getting married or before even thinking about getting married.

Beware of Lack of Openness In Your Partner: Many couples make the mistake of not putting everything on the table for discussion from the onset. Ask yourself, ⿿What do I need to know to be absolutely certain I want to marry this person?⿝ ⿿What bothers me about this person or the relationship?⿝ It⿿s very important to identify what⿿s bothering you, things that concern you, and things you are afraid to bring up for discussion. Then you must have an honest discussion about them. This is a great way to test the strength of your relationship. Bringing up issues when there⿿s conflict is a great opportunity to really evaluate how well you communicate, negotiate, and work together as a team. When people get into power struggles and blame each other, it⿿s an indication they don⿿t work well as a team. Also important is being vulnerable around each other. Ask deep questions of each other and see how your partner responds. How do they handle it? Are they defensive? Do they attack? Do they withdraw? Do they get annoyed? Do they blame you? Do they ignore it? Do they hide or rationalize it? Don⿿t just listen to what they say but watch for how they say it!

9) Beware of Avoiding Personal Responsibility: It⿿s very important to remember no one else is responsible for your happiness. Many people make the mistake of thinking someone else will fulfill them and make their life better and that⿿s their reason for getting married. People fail to realize that if they are unhappy as a single person, they will continue to be miserable when they are married. If you are currently not happy with yourself, don⿿t like yourself, don⿿t like the direction your life is going now, it⿿s important to take responsibility for that now and work on improving those areas of your life before considering marriage. Don⿿t bring these issues into your marriage and hope your partner will fix them.

10) Watch Out For Lack of Emotional Health and Availability In Your Potential Partner: Many people choose partners that are not emotionally healthy or available. One huge problem is when a partner is unable to balance the emotional ties to family members, the marriage ends up having 3 (or more) people in it rather than two. An example of this would be if a man is overly dependent on his mother and brings that relationship into the marriage; this is no doubt a recipe for disaster. Also important to consider are the following:

Avoid people who are emotionally empty inside. These include people who don⿿t like themselves because they lack the ability to be emotionally available. They are always preoccupied with their deficiencies, insecurities, and negative thoughts. They are in a perpetual fight with depression, never feel good, are isolated, are critical and judgmental; tend to not have any close friends, and often distrust people or are afraid of them. Another clear indication about them is they always feel their needs are not getting met; they have a sense of entitlement and feel angry when they feel people should take care of them and they don⿿t. They feel burdened by other people⿿s needs and feel resentment towards them. These people can not be emotionally available to build healthy relationships.
Addictions can also limit the level of availability of the partner to build a strong emotional relationship. Never marry an addict. Addictions are not limited to drugs and alcohol. They can be about addictions and dependency on work, internet, hobbies, sports, shopping, money, power, status, materialism, etc. When someone has an addiction, they will not and can not be emotionally available to develop an intimate relationship with you!

To read the entire article go to:
http://muslimvillage.com/2011/ 10/27/…04y9J.facebook

Ready for Valentine’s Day?

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For Older Women the Dating Pool is a Challenge

By Winifed Robinson.
Go to http://planktonlife.wordpress.com to read Ms. Robinson’s blog.

By When it comes to romance, we all like a happy ending — which is what makes a new blog by an older, single woman such a heart-wrenching read.

The woman, who is divorced but says she would love to be married again, describes herself as being ‘on the wrong side of 45 with a brace of kids’ and bewails her place in ‘relationship no-man’s land’, condemned to be alone for the rest of her days.

She writes under the name ‘The  Plankton’, explaining that, like the plankton in the ocean, she is barely visible and ‘at the bottom of the food chain for love and relationships’.

Her outpourings, which convey with unflinching honesty the huge difficulties older women can face finding a man, have caused quite a stir on women’s internet chat forums. They have certainly proved a talking point among my single women friends.

‘I almost wept when I read her blog about going to a wonderful party hoping to meet someone,’ my friend Ruthie explained. ‘I have felt like that so often. You know you are being unrealistic and that it won’t happen — yet when it doesn’t, you can’t help being disappointed.’

Read on at:
  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2022102/Why-struggle-single-women-45-meet-soulmate.html

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On Doubts in Relationships

Posted by Ree on BlackLikeMoi on 3/23/12

Do you have doubts in your relationship?
Doubts in relationships can be just as destructive – or even as deadly as – such “biggies” as cheating and out-and-out abuse.

Pardon the infelicitous analogy, but doubts are like termites and can cause as much damage to a love match as to a house.  There is another similarity between the two…both are best treated in a forthright and surgical manner. If doubts are undermining your relationship, pretend you and your significant other are medical researchers who are out to prevent a communicable disease from spreading.

According to author Ree,
Step 1 is to locate the cause or source of the doubt. It may be a specific action, such as a message that shouldn’t have been sent by your S/O to someone or a too-close-for-comfort exchange on the internet…discovered by you when he/she had to unexpectedly leave their laptop screen exposed in the kitchen table while they answered a call of nature or somesuch.

Step 2 is to discuss it. Bring it up calmly and directly. Tell your partner about it and why it bothers you.

Read on for further steps and the remainder of the article at http://blacklikemoi.com/2012/03/entertainment/doubt-in-your-relationship/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yk5qaC34Q18

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Author Eve Sharon Moore’s “Black Women: Interracial and Intercultural Marriage Book 1-First and Foremost

Race/gender relations, especially re black and white Americans, have been a constant theme, and (until recently) a very grim chapter of American history…especially on the part of white Americans. Continue reading

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