All posts by Ellie Holt

Where did all the “good men” go????

 

So last week I talked about “good girls” and how to spot such “scarce” creatures in the millennial dating world. If you haven’t already read it please see last week’s post: Where did all the “nice girls” go???

The conclusion was that while many a man wonders what happened to the types of women they would not cringe at the thought of taking home to meet mom, the truth is that men are in need of changing their OWN perspective and their dating behavior in order to find higher quality women.

But I am always one for gender equality.

Girls experience the same male-burnout and probably even on a larger scale. They complain about the limited choices of “good men” that treat them right and don’t play games. They bemoan the sparse options of men with good jobs and aspirations to be fathers. Women grumble and whine over being pumped and dumped by yet another loser who “couldn’t commit” and so they find themselves asking,” where did all the good men go?” What happened to the men who asked women on dates instead of to “netflix and chill?” What happened to the men that were respectful and opened doors?

Well, ladies as much as you want to think that men are from mars and women are from venus, you share more than you think with your testosterone counterparts.

The truth is the same for men as it is for women. Jerks exist. They always have and always will. It is womens’ jobs to sift through the unreliable dicks, filter through the loser who just want to fuck, get realistic about their standards, and change their dating behavior. Because there are lots of great guys out there, it is your job to find them. It is also your job to accept that if you have been pumped and dumped a lot (or whatever it is you are sick of), it is not just because men ain’t shit. It is important to recognize that you may also be part of the problem.

If you are wondering where all the “good dudes” went you are probably asking this for 1 of 3 reasons.

1. You are having sex too soon with too many strangers
2. You are only meeting men in the party scene
3. You have seen too many Disney films and your expectations are unfathomably high and unrealistic.

Does this look familiar? That is because men and women are both guilty of the same attitudes and behaviors that invite low quality men and women. So this might sound redundant, but it is absolutely necessary to see how men and women thrust the same unrealistic expectations, coupled with a complete lack of self-responsibility upon one another and then complain when they can’t seem to have any romantic success with the opposite sex. You are responsible for only one person’s behavior and that is your own and so if you want to see changes in your dating pool, and kinds of people you date, hookup with, and get into relationships with, you need to start with yourself.

Let’s get started with a little dating makeover shall we?

1. Have sex. Yes girl, I am a proponent of having sex when you want and with whom you want. Have casual sex. Have one night stands. But if this is not making you happy or fulfilling you, or you are ready for a more committed relationship, it is time to stop having sex right away. Ladies, it is all about filtering. If you want to know that a dude won’t just pump and dump you, don’t have sex with him right away. If he is willing to wait, chances are he is in it for more than just pussy.

But I like sex, I want to have sex. I don’t want to have to suppress my sexuality.

That is fine. I gotchu. Have sex whenever you would like, all I am saying is that if you are no longer finding hookups to be very fulfilling and they keep bringing along jerks, it is time to change your strategy. Stupidity is trying the same thing over and over again and expecting different results right? Jerks gravitate to girls that are willing to have sex right away because it is easy and requires very little masquerading as a “good man.” This is not to say that you can’t find a nice guy hooking up, it is just that the odds are considerably against you. For a lot of women that risk is not one they want to take. Delaying sex also gives you the valuable chance to see what he is all about. You want to test drive before you buy right? Spending time with a guy without sex will show you who he is when he is not just handed what he wants. Delaying sex is not about controlling or manipulating men, it is about filtering men to determine whether they are a worthy investment or not.

2. Ugh. I cannot stress enough how unlikely it is you are going to find a guy who wants to settle down and have five kids and join the PTA with you in the party scene. Ladies please do not expect to meet Prince Charming at a rave. Why? Because those dudes are out for a good time, they are the ones trying to get with fresh pussy, and try new drugs and think they will never EVER settle down. They also probably don’t do their own laundry either. Stop going to bars every weekend looking like a bunch of street walkers and wonder where all the good men went???

3. I am sorry to say that Disney probably left us with some unrealistic expectations about romance. Like the fact that Eric was wiling to marry a naked, mute girl on the beach. Or that abusive, manipulative kidnappers make good lovers. Girls are uber guilty of fantasizing about unrealistically perfect men. They want Christian Grey and The Notebook and Titanic and Peter Kavinsky (sorry had to name drop again) all rolled into one. Too often girls expect to be treated like princesses because duh they are sugar, spice and everything nice right?Well… While women should undoubtedly be treated well, this is an unfair and selfish standard to put on men. Relationships are about reciprocity and mutual respect, not finding a man who will put you on a pedestal and worship the ground you walk on. It is time to get real with yourself and ask yourself whether or not you are putting unfair expectations on romance and men in general. And the truth is that most women only think they want Prince Charming. Do you really want a man who would fall in love at first sight? Doesn’t that mean that he could easily fall in love again with someone else and that you really were not that special? Do you really want a pussy-whipped beta that would willingly submit to you? Nah, me either girl. ladies, it is time to get real about your standards. By all means, hold out for good men and respect and love and kindness, but do not set men up to fail with your unrealistic expectations.

Okay so where are all these good men at that women can supposedly lure in with these new dating mindsets?

1. They are working on themselves. The “good men” you dream about are not sitting on their asses playing video games and they are not out chasing ass (if they are getting ass it’s because ass comes to them). These men are improving themselves, they are working on their careers, getting fit, eating right, socializing with people that build them up, they are getting educated, they are learning new tricks and trades. They are productive and proactive

2. But…they probably are not in college. Those dudes are still in party mode and won’t emerge for a a few years.

3. They probably are not in their early twenties. These guys are like 6th graders with large forearms and cars and bank accounts.

4. They probably are not on dating sites. As I have said, we all know a few couples that met on a dating app and are getting married, but don’t let this lure you into thinking that you too will meet your handsome prince while scrolling through Tinder at 2am, drunk. Those people are the exception not the rule. The truth is that most young dudes on dating apps are looking for hookups. And ladies, please do not deceive yourself into thinking that “but only if he just met me, he would want more than a hookup!”

5. The “good men” are putting themselves and their missions in first place, so they are not out trying to pick up women. They are not slaves to getting laid, eager to manipulate, lie and ooze sleaze in order to sleep with a new woman. And because of this women present themselves. If you want to meet “good men” you need to also put yourself in self-improvement situations like a new class, running a marathon, a career networking community, leadership roles, local government, volunteering, and mentorship roles. This is where you will find men who want to be better versions of themselves, and it also a good opportunity to see them in action. You aren’t going to meet him waiting at home for him to climb up your hair.

 

I get it, after a few years in the Gladiatorial arena of dating we start to feel cynical. Everyone is either a liar, jerk, asshole, manipulator, narcissist, or some lethal combination. And so we become pessimistic about the sorts of choices out there. We emerge with the tatters of our hearts after a few too many broken hearts, and we wonder if we should write men off altogether. Maybe a convent would not be so bad? Or the cool, drunk aunt that always travels and never married?

But often times we forget that we are in charge of our own dating behaviors and the contexts we put ourselves in. We set the standards. We make the rules. We decide who gets a pass into our lives. We filter.

Your attitudes and behaviors invite men that correspond. When you demand more you get more.

If we are tired of a parade of fuckboys, it is time to start re-evaluating where we meet guys and how we engage with them.

We also need to understand the lens through which we view men and determine how that influences our standards. Are we expecting him to ride in on a white steed? Are we hoping for a fairytale and then wondering why we cannot seem to like any guys we go out with? It is also noteworthy to say that if you want a high value man you need to be a high value woman. Be the kind of girlfriend, you think your dream man deserves or is looking for.

Contrary to the seemingly endless supply of fuckboys, good men do exist in the wild, you just have to be willing to ditch the party scene, filter sooner and more throughly and remove the rose tinted glasses. And remember you can’t change the boys, but you can change yourself.

And to all the boys who don’t meet your new and improved criteria.

Thank u, next.

good luck,

Ellie xx

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Where did all the “nice girls” go???

Dear men,

if you and your bros find yourself huddled around Monday Night Football, comparing chest hair, beers in hand, (idk is this how dudes hang out? Somebody verify please) lamenting the bygone era of “good girls,” allow me to enlighten you as to why you find yourself in such a slump and how you might level up to the company of good women.

First you are asking this question for 1 of three reasons

1. You are just trying to fuck
2. Your social life is bound to the party scene
3. You are an entitled prick with unrealistic assumptions about women and what you “deserve” you entitled asshole

Once you can categorize the context of this predicament you can see how you might need to alter your strategy. I have to laugh when I hear men complaining about the lack of quality women out there, and how they are all “hoes,” (it is probably the same feeling of injustice men feel when girls all over Tumblr complain about the lack of “good men”-stay tuned for more on that) because the truth is that you might be more of the problem than you think.

I am not going to spew some justification shit where I claim that all women are perfect, angel princesses with rainbows coming out of their asses, and that men ain’t shit, but a general rule of thumb that I like to gently remind people of is that if you are experiencing reoccurring problems in your dating life, it is probably you. Or can at least can somewhat be chalked up to your own behavior. Please see The Before-You-Date-Checklist. 

There are for sure some low quality women out there. There are women trying to squeeze out your every last dime for child support, alimony and Balenciaga bags. There are women who actually think Amy Schumer is funny. There are women trying to affirm themselves by getting with as many dicks as possible. There are women struggling with low self worth who will act out and throw tantrums to validate themselves. There are women who poke holes in condoms. There are women who think Michael Cera’s movies are actually good. There are narcissistic and vapid women. There are women who will blame you of sexual assault just to manipulate you.

I don’t advise trying to meet potential wives anywhere near these signs…

But there is really no use complaining about the kinds of women who are frankly inevitable. These women have and will always exist. They are nothing new. They are not the product of spontaneous generation, thrust upon the millennials like a Biblical plague.

The only actions you are responsible for are your own, and if you are unhappy with these types of women constantly showing up in your life it is time to make some changes in how and where you meet women, and the sorts of choices you make about who you invest time in.

This advice goes for men on all levels of the dating game, whether that be hooking up, or in relationships to looking to settle down. The point is that even if you are just fucking a girl and nothing more, that is still an investment of your time and if you respect your time you will invest it wisely in the types of women who are enhancing your life, not detracting from it. That is on you, not them.

So who are good women? What do they even look like? Where do you meet these specimens?

1. Good women are a diverse set – I mean it is subjective of course. One man’s trash might be another’s treasure, right? There is no such thing as “the perfect woman” or some gold standard in which to hold women up to. You have to let go of this idea of a single, perfect female out there.

2. I think we all know the kind of woman that men idolize: tall, blonde, long legs, big tits, “ass that will swallow up a g-string” (courtesy of Kanye). Submissive but also smart. Opinionated but also demur. Self sufficient, but is also dependent on her man. Sexually inexperienced, but also a freak in the sheets. Funny, but like not too funny. You get my point? The ideal woman is a set of contractions. She is like Peter Kavinsky, (only girls will get this reference) she does not exist. Let go of your unfathomably unrealistic standards. They are getting in the way of you seeing the everyday goddesses all around you.

3. “Good women” are not bouncing from man to man. You know the type- of course you do, we all do. She is the girl that cannot be alone. She HAS to have a boyfriend and will rebound from one to the next in like 48 hours straight. Too often, the woman most worth your time is the woman who is comfortable being alone and is secure in her identity without a man.

4. These women are not the women you meet as you stare through blurry, drunken eyes around the basement party at 5am when you don’t want to go home alone. True love is probably not the drunk girl slurring her words, with vomit dribbling down her front as she begs her friend to give back her phone so she can text her ex (although perhaps give her a few years to mature and learn to hold her liquor).

5. Be wary of women you meet out partying, or drinking, or at a bar, or similar contexts. Not because only hoes and tramps and girls with daddy issues are out at bars (duh not true) but because the stats are just less in your favor. If she is in the party phase of life, as lots of girls 19-26 are, she is more likely to just be looking for a good time and not for a meaningful relationship. Meaning that while she might be awesome for a night of debauchery, she is less likely or wanting to be a nurturing and supportive girlfriend/wife/life partner/sister wife (whatever you are in the market for).

6. So here is a fun fact about women. We will step into the roles that you give us. Treating a woman like a long term investment will inspire her to act more like a long term investment ( unless of course she does not want that). Treating a woman like a one night stand will keep her as just that (unless she wants that). It is kind of like parenting where if you treat a kid like a misbehaving nuisance, guess what, they will keep being one, but if you treat your child like a responsible child, they will step up to the plate to prove you right.

7. Don’t expect to find true love on a dating app either. Yeah yeah we all have that one friend who met her fiancee on Bumble or whatever, but please understand that they are special snowflakes and you are more likely to find a hot hookup or Friday night plans on a dating app rather than the mother of your children.

8. A good woman will be the woman with a lot of friends- good, long term friends – please see: The Fool Proof Way to see if a Girl is Worth your Time.

9. A good woman will be the woman who can handle conflict with grace and class. She is the woman who chooses her battles. Please see : The Before-You-Date-Checklist     

10. Fear not! Good women are everywhere! You just have to wipe the entitled bullshit from you eyes to find them! They are in the cubicle next to you. They are walking their dog in your neighborhood. They are your friend’s friend. They are shopping for fair trade, Non-GMO quinoa at your local Co-Op. They are your accountant! (don’t be afraid of successful women who are good at math!)

Not to pick on girls who like to go out, or idealize girls who enjoy knitting on Friday nights, but from my experience those “high quality” women that men are lamenting, are usually not out busting a move at the local watering hole every weekend. So please toss out all those bar scene pick up lines. Instead, exchange them for getting to know women on a inter-personal level in an interest-based/commonality context, such as a group setting, a class, the workplace, sports, mutual friends, church, blah blah, basically anything but a situation without the pretense of “this is where people are on the prowl” (okay maybe scratch the Church suggestion). Women will be a) more receptive and less guarded about your intentions and b) less likely to just be looking for a good time and have more serious dating objectives.

would 10/10 recommend a library pick up

So back to my first three questions.

1. You can’t be just trying to fuck and be looking for a “good woman” – the two quests are incompatible. If you are just trying to fuck you are only going to end up with girls who also just want to fuck. They might be totally awesome, empowered women, but since neither of you are expressing interest in a relationship, neither of you are going to demonstrate relationship-material qualities. She probably is not going to treat you the way a girlfriend would treat you, and so you unfairly end up labeling her a ” slutty bitch,” and in the words of the patriarchy, “you asked for it.”

2. As stated above, only meeting women who are out for a night of revelry is only going to introduce you to one type of woman, the party-er. Here is what to know about the party-er a) she is probably only looking for a good time aka not a good man so don’t be surprised if she isn’t picking up what you are putting down b) her social life revolves around drinking and going out so she might be fun, but maybe not much deeper than that (you want someone who has other interests beside mini skirts and vodka right?) c)  strong correlation (not causation) to other vices you might not be fond of, like drugs or binge drinking or drunk texting her ex.

3. Also, as stated above, don’t spend your days jerking off to the idea that someday you are going to take the virginity of a Victoria Secret Angel. Don’t fixate on the ideal woman whom you think you are entitled to because you are a “nice guy.” Being nice does not mean you get to pass “go,” collect $200 and then fuck a demur, virginal, Megan Fox. Neither does being an athlete or a celebrity or being rich or driving a Tesla entitle you to some idealistic fantasy that 0.00000000000001 men will end up with. There is a big difference between men who are confidence and self-respecting and those who are entitled. Men who are entitled think they deserve women, while confident men know that they are good enough to earn a good woman.  Having an entitled attitude about women blinds you to the “good women” that you probably encounter every day without even noticing. Seriously they are everywhere. Whole Foods is full of them. They love the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. Your local Cross Fit gym. In line at Chipotle. Perusing the aisles at the library. Signing a down payment for a car at the local dealership because she pays her own bills and has her life together.

The moral of the story is:

Stop your whining. Good women abound. You just need to cast aside the entitlement goggles, update your hangouts, ditch the bar scene, “next” women who are not enhancing your life, widen your gaze to the hotties in line at Trader Joes, and stop jerking off to unrealistic fantasies (*cough cough porn).

Ready. Set. Date.

Good luck,

Ellie xx

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Is hooking up bad for us once we have stopped hooking up???

I am not here to belabor the “sinful repugnance” of hookup culture as our grandparents or parents might. Kids these days…. Nor am I here to bemoan a bygone era of dates to the soda shoppe and nice boys asking permission to court a man’s daughter. They are over and there is no point whining about yesteryear.

Yet, we have to ask ourselves, is hookup culture “bad” for us?

Something like 70% of college students will experience a casual sexual encounter during college. Why? It is fun. It is exciting. It is hip. Who does not want to feel desired?Hookup culture can be empowering. It is a chance to experience a diverse array of sexual situations with many different partners. Casual sex can be a great way to try new things like toys and positions. It is a chance to learn good communication skills and better express ourselves in vulnerable situations. It can increase sexual aptitude. But it can also hurt us when feelings arise and human decency is absent from purely physical encounters.

Sure there are some negative ramifications for those who invest in and participate wholeheartedly in the endless buffet of sexual encounters that permeate college campuses. Yet, there were negative components to dating in 1950 and courting in 1850 and arranged marriages in 1500. It is therefore silly to assume that there are no consequences to whatever mating style we are experiencing this century. But what I want to discuss is how the ghosts of hookup culture follow us out of the dorm rooms and into the adult world. What happens when we are tired of meaningless sexual encounters and actually want real monogamy??? How does the hookup culture influence the dating choices we make long after we have left the frat basements???

Everyone’s sexual experiences are different. For some it is a chance to explore their sexualities in a way that is vulnerable, empowering, and fun. For a lot of millennials, they feel that sex should not always be confined to committed relationships. Sometimes they just want sex. For fun.

Hookup culture does not always create baggage, sometimes we enter hookup culture with our own baggage and that correlation does not equal causation.

However, I am not saying that all hookups are great sexual experiences where both the man and woman orgasm, high five and then get dressed and go on their merry ways, grinning ear to ear with that post sex glow and a sense of liberation. Hookup culture does not always stay in hookup culture, and that sometimes its baggage can follow participants into their next relationships.

  1. There is a strong correlation between hookup culture and women who say “men ain’t shit” 

Sometimes hookup culture breeds a sense of mistrust between genders. Hookup culture is meant to be “carefree” and “easy” and “fun” right? Yet it often ends up turning men and women against each other after the initial thrill wears off and reality starts to set in. Sometimes women learn from hookup culture that all men want is sex and men learn that all women are “hoes.” This carries into later life stages when people actually want to date and marry and settle down, but they find that those feelings of resentment and mistrust still exist. In college, hookup culture is easy because it is assumed that almost everyone is interested in the same thing, meaningless sex, but now that that is no longer the case how can you decipher who wants more and who is still in it for the physical?

Likewise, hookup culture is not really about compassion or respect, it is in fact pretty selfish. It is sometimes about meeting your own needs and getting in and out quickly with very little regard to other people’s feelings. Too often it is a direct negation of feelings and a deliberate effort to diminish and underestimate encounters. Most of the time people get ignored and treated poorly for the sake of maintaining the image that it was all “meaningless.” It is easy to see how these sentiments might breed a sense of mistrust between genders if you spent years of college life, and perhaps beyond, getting treated like a masturbation toy or being ignored by people whom had seen you naked and vulnerable, even if that is what was preferred at the time.

2. Hookup culture is kind of cold…

Hookup culture can antagonize feelings, attachment and even basic human kindness in favor of no-strings attached, meaningless, casual, carefree sex where feelings are the enemy. The logic behind hookup culture goes something like this: if relationships are about mutual respect, kindness, empathy, compassion, meaning and selflessness, in order to make sure that a hookup remains the meaningless antithesis of a relationship it must be devoid of all of those things. In fact just so everyone is clear how meaningless and truly casual a hookup is, it must be disrespectful, unkind, apathetic, disinterested, meaningless, and selfish, lest anyone mistake a hookup for something more. This might work well for those in the college arena who are merely looking for sex and are not interested in a relationship at the time, but let us not believe that this is an attitude that can just be dropped once the diploma is in hand.

Hookup culture can teach and prepare participants to treat sex like NBD and therefore the people they have sex with are NBD. Hookup culture sometimes encourages participants to turn a blind eye to the humanity of the people they get with. They are just mediums of pleasure and nothing more. Men become susceptible to actions and attitudes that objectify and demean women, while women adopt attitudes of suppressing feelings, fearing commitment, not standing up for themselves and treating their partners with aloof indifference. This is a hard cycle to break and I can see why. It is difficult to go from training one’s self to treat sex with a blase approach to experiencing it as a meaningful, loving component to commitment.

3. Hookup culture creates bad habits 

Hook up culture is actually a lot like porn. It is addictive. it is cheap. And most of all it creates unrealistic expectations. I am legitimately worried how I am going to keep the sexual attention of my future husband/monogamous partner knowing that like most of our generation he probably engaged in the hookup culture. How can I, as one woman, possibly keep a man’s interest sexually who spent years of college and young adulthood getting sex from different women. Even if I am 100000x better in bed I still cannot replace the thrill of the chase or the thrill that comes with conquering a “new woman.” How can I expect to hold his attention if the alternative to monogamy and real relationships is the addictive, ever-thrilling pursuit of new pussy that was encouraged of him in his youth?

It is positively daunting and can set up both genders to ultimately fail.  You just cannot replace the excitement of not knowing who you are going to end up in bed with no matter how great the relationship, and that is why so many people in long term relationships seek how to “keep things spicy.” Likewise, women often partake in hookup culture for the thrill of being chosen and desired by many different men, something that is not a component of monogamy. It is an aphrodisiac in itself to be picked out of a crowd of other young, hot people. This element of hooking up can create boredom or anxiety in monogamous relationships later down the road, no matter how great the relationship is.

Also, lots of hookup culture hinges off of comparison in a lot of ways. Men compare the hotness of conquests. Women compare dick size. Men compare how good she gave head. Blah blah blah. When hookup culture enthusiastically encourages as many partners as possible it is impossible for there not to be an element of physical comparison. Especially when sex is meant to be casual and shallow, there is little else to base the encounter off of besides appearance and sexual aptitude.

There is also an external social aspect of hookup culture that happens exclusively between friends in which swapping details of last night’s sordid affair makes for great conversation. It is a part of the culture to sit at brunch with your friends and giggle over what happened and who did who and how good so and so was and hot she was and yaddah yah. Yet, when comparison takes center stage this can be damaging to how individuals view sex later on in life. It can be intimidating to be in bed with a man or women that has been in a lot of other people’s beds. “How will I compare?” or “how will they compare?” becomes a hugely daunting question riddled with insecurity and anxiety.

Likewise, sex is bound to be less enjoyable for someone who has trained their perception of sex to be all about comparison. Someone who has been with a lot of people cannot help but continue to rank and compare and analyze the skills and attributes of the person lying naked next to them, and that can have a negative impact on their sex life even after they are in a relationship and there is no one left to compare to.

So what’s the verdict?

I am not here to rag on hooking up, it is an intrinsic part of our dating/mating culture now and has its merits. In most ways “it is what it is” and there is no point in whining about the good old days. But it is also naive to pretend that it is all good either, or that hooking up is always some milestone of progress for sexual liberation and empowerment. There are a lot of negative aspects and corruption that comes into play when a culture revolves around meeting only your own needs.

I get it Millennials are busy getting their lives together and hooking up seems like an effortless way to meet your own needs while also having fun, but without the rigidity of commitment. Yet, it is important to understand the impact of these seemingly “careless” and ‘carefree” sexual experiences and remember that they can influence us long after the next morning’s hangover.

*Check out this Ted Talk on the “benefits” of hookup culture. I feel like many of the perceived benefits were fleeting, short-termed, misrepresented and did little to outweigh the cons, although she presents the cons as barely more than nuisances (STDs and unwanted pregnancies and broken hearts). I am honestly shocked that some PhD advisor passed this as legit research let alone sound advice to young people.

Good luck,

Ellie xx

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Happy Cuffing Season!

Don’t let yourself get caught single this time of year…

It is that time of year again. Time for pumpkin spice lattes and fall foliage and slutty Halloween Costumes empowered women dressing in ways that exude confidence and feminine sexuality, and of course dropping your summer fling like its hot.

The lazy, hazy days of summer have now passed us. We are now drifting into the time of year when cuddling with bae by an open fire suddenly sounds far more appealing than a steamy hookup after a beach party bacchanal.

For those of us unfamiliar with the dating seasons of the millennial calendar allow me to introduce cuffing season. Summer flings are over and it is time to nail down a partner for the always romantic cooler months of the year. Sure a pumpkin patch with the gals is fun enough, but wouldn’t it better if there was a special someone to hold your mitten-covered hand as you strolled through throngs of preschoolers smashing pumpkins? Wouldn’t the holidays be much more enjoyable with a bae to take to family events so they can stop harassing you about settling down? Who are you going to drink mulled cider with after a long day in the crisp, cool air??? What is NYE without a special person to toast the new year with and enjoy a midnight kiss????

let’s be honest, these holidays were not made for single people, in fact they often mock single people. Mistletoe? Couple Costumes? What the hell am I suppose to be thankful for if I am alone on Thanksgiving???? What is Christmas without an expensive gift from a beau that you can exchange for store credit later on???? Valentines’s Day is often referred to as SAD or Singles Awareness Day….You get my point.

This time of year comes with couplings that change just as quickly as the leaves do and soon those summer hookups are ready to be replaced with their cuddling, monogamous counterparts.Even the baddest bitches and the most serial fuckboys are ready to accept commitment during this time. Something about the changing of the seasons makes us want to settle down and depart from our promiscuous ways even if it is just for a few months.

Now that I have everyone’s hearts beating a bit faster and their cheeks just a little flushed, welcome to cuffing season. It is time to get cuffed to the season’s latest fling for the months of October- March before you dump their ass for a spring fling. But hurry or else all the good ones are going to be taken and you don’t want to still be on the prowl come Veterans Day when everyone else has coupled off to enjoy their 3 day weekend in the warm embrace of their lover and you are left to help mom and dad put up their Christmas lights.

So what is a young millennial to do? How/Where do I find bae? What do you look for in a cuffing mate?

1. Bae doesn’t need to last the year, they just need to suffice for a few months, so don’t set your expectations too high. He just needs to be polite to mom and grandma, know how to decorate a tree and have an affinity for horror films. All other attributes are just bonuses.

2. Fuckbuddies are so last season. Now it is all about cuddlebuddies. If you want to maximize your cuddle experience I recommend the dad bod. He will have more cushion for you to rest your head on and will not guilt you into working out when you should be knocking back eggnog and eating a healthy dozen of grandma’s xmas cookies.

3. The dating apps are a pretty reliable source of eager young beta males ready to hold your hand on Candy Cane Lane and buy you the dreamiest Christmas gifts. He is also willing to do all the sappy, cheesy stuff with you that a fuckboi would have zero interest in. The way to find these desperate betas is easy, namely because most men turn into one this time of year anyways. What can i say the spirit of the holidays is infectious. Ask all your matches if they want to go to a pumpkin patch or a tree lighting ceremony or whatever holiday bullshit. Ugly Christmas Sweater parties are also good. Just remember that while summer was for hookups and one night stands, cuffing season is for mushy activities that last week’s no-strings-attached-fuckbuddy would not be interested in.

4. If you are a guy, avoid the party girls for a while. Don’t worry they will still be there when winter thaws into bikini season and mini skirts start showing up again (okay fine they were there the whole time). In the mean time, cuffing season is about finding “good girls” to bring home to mom so that your parents don’t think you’re a player who will never ever settle down and give them grandchildren. You need to assuage their anxiety for a brief few months with a nice girl who doesn’t hate her dad.

5. Another note for men, this is a good time to get some seasonal work. While the cuddling and Netflix as chestnuts roast on the open fire might sound like a breather for your wallet, expensive holiday events, Christmas presents and Valentines’s Day will be a burden on the ol’ budget. Be sure to not spend too much though. Remember she is gonna be gone by March anyways.

6. For both genders, gifts should stay in the under 20$ range. Don’t waste your money on someone that is gonna be old news by the time President’s Day rolls around. Also, lavish gifts wreak of “catching feelings” and “desperation” something that is to be avoided during this season. Remember, your beau is not meant to be long term, so don’t treat them like a long-term investment. You are just here for the corn mazes and the admiration of pleasantly surprised relatives who thought you were going to die alone.

Best of luck out there! I hope you all find your flannel-adorned hottie to snuggle up with this cuffing season! Most importantly remember to not catch feelings with your temporary fling! While the mistletoe and romantic renditions of “All I want for Christmas is You” might persuade you otherwise, just remember that nobody wants to be attached come bring break and this hoe is only going to hold you back.

Good luck,

Ellie xx

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Do Chicks Dig Jerks Part 2

your cliche “bad boy”

I would like to add a female perspective to the rousing debate of whether or not women really do like bad boys and if so do nice guys in fact finish last??

Allow me to answer this as simplistically and eloquently as possible.

yes.
and yes.

We have zero interest in a push-over of a man who hopes that if he can just call us pretty or get the check at dinner we might bless him with a view of our tits.
Dating should not be a charity case alright?

Nice guys might be “nice” but they are not alluring or exciting or dangerous. Where is the thrill in “nice” ?

Apparently women have masochistic dating tendencies where they would much rather get fucked over by a jerk with a bad attitude than suffer through a date with a man who loves his mother and opens the door for her.

Men often bemoan this illogical predisposition of women. And frankly I get it. I would be frustrated too if I had spent my whole life trying to be nice to women, because duh morals, and then end up finding out that she wants a jerk instead. And what’s worse is that women will complain about the jerk incessantly. She will cry over this guy for years, but still run back to his lying, cheating, bitch- ass over and over again. I would be cynical towards women too if I too thought my two choices in life were to either be “the nice guy” who can’t score, or some sort of despot with zero respect for bitches.

But as a women myself, I feel like this is a cliché that needs some unpacking, not just for men, but for women as well. Because lets be honest, there is some truth to this. Girls do like bad boys and run from the so-called “nice guys.”

What is the problem with being “nice” you ask?

Women don’t really have a problem with guys who are nice, like yes please by all means open doors for me, treat me with respect, give me complements, but that CANNOT and SHOULD NOT be the way that you show initial affection or interest. A guy who shows his interest in a woman by simply being nice is boring as fuck. And we don’t want it. The guy who spends the first date telling you that you look pretty and bringing you flowers is predictable and lacks excitement. Any man can open a door. It is generic. You think you’ve done something meaningful and no other man can offer the same?

Are you following me?

“Niceness” is not the problem. The problem is men who think that being nice is enough. That “niceness” is deserving and entitled to ass or attention. Or that niceness is enough to warrant attraction. Wrong.

What is it about jerks that is so dreamy???

Yet, It is not that we want someone who is gonna treat us like dirt. Obviously I am not a masochist who cant wait to be with a guy that ignores me, cheats on me, is rude to me, and cannot commit. The idea of the bad boy as an aphrodisiac stems from a need for a thrill. Girls want a little bit of an adrenaline rush, hence why we love drama so damn much. Also:

  1. mystery surrounding an enigmatic, rebellious man
  2. confidence is sexy (even though its probably arrogance)
  3. jerks exude charm and charisma to get what they want
  4. knowing what they want and going after a woman is HOTTT
  5. the feeling that any love worth having should be earned
  6. the sexual tension that accompanies trying to beat a player at their own game
  7. the sexual tension that accompanies a man who cant be deciphered
  8. women love a broken man that they can “fix”
  9. a flawed man gives a woman something to work on and pursue
  10. the rush of emotions that accompanies being with a jerk, such as frustration, confusion, and excitement is an addictive thrill

Women like a little bit of the chase that accompanies being with someone that is just out of grasp. We like the drama that comes with “will he, or wont he” and the inevitable thrill of trying to lock down a man who just does not want to be locked now.  At the end of the day we really just want to be pursued by a man whom we thought was unattainable. Yes, we like the drama and the thrill and the rush of emotions that comes with a “bad boy,” yet the thrill does in fact wear off. The truth of the matter is that if you truly are that jerk you might get pussy for a while, but girls won’t stick around forever. At some point we will learn to respect ourselves, get the hell over you and go for someone who treats us better, even if it is a “nice guy”. Do not mistake that arrogance and bullying will land you endless pussy.

Okay, so if being “nice” is a turn off and morals still matter, how should men behave???

If I am being honest i think that many a man has lost the art of the flirt in this generation. Where is the teasing? The witty banter? The rapid-fire back and forth? That is the stuff that stokes the embers of the slow burn! Women want to be teased! That roguish sense of reckless abandon and self- sufficiency is the secret ingredient in the “jerk” or the “bad boy” that gets women hot and bothered, and why women yawn when a man puts all his romantic hopes in opening doors and being merely polite.

Flirting should always error on the opposite side of polite. Polite is boring. Manners are boring. You know what is not? Teasing. Witty banter. Heated discussions. Testing the boundaries that women actually want you to test. We want you to cross the line and say something bold, or act rashly, or take charge. It demonstrates strength. Be a little controversial. Do not ask for permission. A man who acts with unabashed confidence is the one women want.

This is inter-connected with what my friend, Luke explained in his post on the subject. He makes the claim that what girls like about so-called jerks is their strength, both mentally and physically. It is not their sinful ways that get women excited. It is that they go after what they want and are not dependent upon the fickle whims of others to fulfill their needs. They are masculine brutes who do not beg. They do not ask for permission. They do. They act. They look out for themselves and their best interests and they hold their own. Women are interested in men who look out for their own needs and by association her needs, not a man who hopes for handouts.

The thing a woman most desires in a man is his strength, whether that be self-assurance, physical strength, strength of characters, fortitude, confidence, and/or the feelings of security she feels with him. These are the masculine traits in which she is attracted to and ones which her desire for him hinge upon.

When a man puts a woman on a pedestal he relinquishes his power, the one thing a woman is attracted to in him.

This element of strength is what is missing from a man that feels somehow entitled to a woman because he showed some bottom-feeder kindness. When a man acts out of hopeful “niceness” it can wreak of desperation, a scent that women are repulsed by.

Women want to be dominated, not in a cruel, subordinate sort of way, but in a masculine, strong, controlling sort of way that has her best interests at heart. When a man does not demonstrate strength, women subconsciously interpret this as a lack of dominance. They see that he will not dominate them in the way they desire to be. Technically the opposite of dominance in a man is desperation. He is either dominant or desperate. The two are mutually exclusive.

Now for the ladies screaming at their computer screens with indignant rage that I promote such an idea as dominance in any other area besides BDSM, hear me out.

There is a huge difference between a male that dominates women out of controlling, manipulative insecurity and a man who takes charge and demonstrates strength in his relationship and always makes decisions with his woman’s best interests at heart. That is the true difference, it is really whether he had her best interests at heart or not when he takes control. This is what women truly want and are attracted to.

You know that sit-com trope of the nagging wife who bosses her dead beat husband around? Well, pro tip here but that is not a healthy relationship and it is not at all what women are interested in. We want to be able to trust our partners to take control, but to do so in a respectful way that manages our best interests and those of the relationship. We do not want to be the bosses! We do not want to nag or be bossy! Only one person can be dominant at a time in a relationship, and if a woman has to be dominant it means her man is lacking the very qualities that draw her to him.

Treat her well, but DO NOT make her your whole world

Men looking to woo and seduce women, Do: treat her well, with respect and kindness and affection. Do NOT: make her your world. Frankly women do not want to be a man’s world.They just want to exist in it. Women want to be let into your personal, private world. They want to be made privy to a space that you have not let other women into. That is what makes us feel special and unique and desired, but we do not want to be your whole world. We want to cheer for you and encourage you, but making a woman the focal point of your existence is a good way to scare one off. It says to the woman that I have no other life goals or priorities in my life, and her, knowing full well that that is a pathetic life achievement, will become skeptical of your strength and therefore your attractiveness.

This is the secret sauce that jerks know and nice guys fail at. A nice guy is desperate enough to make a woman his whole world, while a so-called jerk never puts all his eggs in the basket of one woman.

So what is the takeaway?

The thing about “jerks” that chicks dig so much is their strength and their confidence, their sense of self that dissuades them from timid gestures and polite conversation and instead emboldens them to take charge and act with entitled recklessness. This is the man that will keep a woman holding on and coming back for more.

Good luck,

Ellie x

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How to Tell if you just got Lucky or you are Actually a Total Stud

Congrats you just scored last night. You have a bad bitch in your bed and you are feeling like a total stud right about now. But wait.

How do you know whether it was you and your endless charisma, defined jawline and impeccable humor, or if you just got lucky? Did she see you from across the room one moment and the next she is wondering what happened to her clothes? Did she leave the house with a plan to get laid that night, or were you a great force of testosterone she just couldn’t deny? Was it your dick she wanted, or would any dick have satisfied? Here are the questions to ask yourself:

1. Are her legs shaved? I am talking freshly shaved, smooth as a baby’s ass. If so she probably shaved hours earlier with the intention of a man’s touch.

2. Is her whole body shaved? You know what I am talking about. Now I don’t mean she got a bikini wax a week ago, I mean are their red bumps because she just shaved that night and was in a hurry to do so??

3. What kind of underwear is she wearing? Lacy or cotton brief? Thong or saggy, beige monstrosity? Does her underwear match? This is probably the most telltale sign. If her bra and underwear match ding ding she got dressed with the intention that someone else would be doing the undressing. However, if you are a man you might not have a clear idea of what a matching set is. Let me make this simple. If she is wearing a black bra with black underwear, it’s matching. If she is wearing a hot pink bra with black underwear that is not matching.

4. Does her outfit allow for easy access? What I mean is not whether she is wearing a dress with no underwear (although that is probably a telltale sign right there) But like is she wearing spanx or biker shorts under neither? A complex romper with thirteen buttons and a padlock on the zipper? All of the following are difficult to remove and are not worn with the intention to be effortlessly flung from her body in a heated moment of passion. Unlike men, women do not just throw on any old thing. What they wear is very intentional and comes with a complex thought process. A cute outfit to go out with friends is very different from what Beyonce calls a “freakum dress.”

5. Is she wearing a padded bra? No woman wears that for any other reason than to lure a man’s gaze. Although she might not be too forward thinking, because once he gets that bra under closer inspection its all gonna be a hoax when those D’s are really A’s.

6. Did she come prepared?? You know what I am talking about. I mean is that black-hole-of-a-purse of her’s stocked with all the necessities. Condoms? Tooth brush? Extra pair of panties? Phone charger?

7. Is she wearing perfume? This is a bit tricky because she might have worn it as a part of her dressing up routine. However since perfume is not visual, it means she intended on being close to someone and not merely a beautiful woman whom you saw from across the room. Perfume is worn with the intention of seduction in the closest vicinity.

8. What did she eat before hand? If you were with her when she was eating what did she choose to eat? Was it a taco or a salad? A woman who is planning to have sex later on does not want to be bloated and will choose her meal carefully.

9. Does she smell clean? Is her breath fresh? Such are indicators of getting up close and personal with someone. I am not merely referring to whether she brushed her teeth that morning or if she washed her hair in the last few days, I am talking about whether she made a recent attempt at being extra clean such as brushing her teeth in the last hour or taking a breath mint. These all mean she came prepared.

10. If you are in a group setting and her friends are present, do they seem surprised that she is leaving with you? Girls gossip and gas one another up, and so if she wanted to get laid that night you better know that all her friends knew about it and that they won’t be surprised when they see her head home with you. On the contrary, if they did not know about it expect some confusion, darting glances and furtive questions being asked before she slinks away with you. Girl groups are like KGB body guards and trust me they will notice you leaving with her and they will want to know what’s up. Pro tip: There will be giggling.

11. Does she have somewhere to be in the morning? If you’ve been chatting with her and she mentions that she has somewhere to be in the morning and sex has not even become an option, she was not planning on winding up in your sheets. But if she seems without hesitation to stay up all night with you and there is no mention of any activities she must dart off to in the morning, then she planned it that way and she planned on doing you.

Men often make the assumption that they are big studs by wooing a woman into bed with them, however if she meets any of the above criteria it was her who planned on getting laid and you just happened to be in the right place at the right time you lucky dawg. Women have needs too you know, and it all depends on whether you are in the crossfire when she does. She probably woke up that morning and thought “tonight I am getting some dick” and proceeded to shave her legs and pick out sexy underwear.

Men need to understand that sex might be initiated by them, but it is chosen by a woman. If she does not want to get fucked, no amount of coy humor and well-coiffed hair or sensuous cologne is going to persuade her otherwise. Once again, I think Beyonce said it best when she said “my persuasion can build a nation” and she was not wrong.

Unless you are in a relationship with your sexual partner, you for sure just got lucky. No it was not your “game” or suave technique in impressing women, you just happened to be in the vicinity of a woman who wanted to get laid. Perhaps she had many choices to choose from and she chose you, great. But it was still all on her terms and had a lot more to do with how horny she was that night, or if she wanted to get back at her ex, or what have you, and a lot less about your manly musk.

good luck,
Ellie xx

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Types of Relationships only Millennials can Relate to

Millennials have been blamed for ruining romance. We get all the shit because we love ambiguity and hate commitment. “We aren’t dating, we are just talking” or “we are just fuck buddies, we don’t have feelings for one another.”* cue huge eyeroll* In order to alleviate some of the burden that comes with that daunting “what are we” question, I have compiled a list of terms that refer to the equally confusing and ambiguous pre/not quite-exclusive relationships that Millennials are so famous for. Here is a comprehensive list of the vernacular.

“Friends with Benefits” a mythical land where purely “platonic” friends use each other for sex with no strings attached and no one gets their feelings hurt. Both parties mutually agree to pretend that things wont get too complicated or that their friendship will not be ruined. LOL.

“On Going Booty Call” a long term relationship that occurs only past the hours of 12am and the only activity is sex. Conversation and personal information is kept to a minimum. Please leave within 10 minutes of finishing.

“Talking” “We are just talking” is code for: we text a lot and may have hooked up a few times, but we aren’t really committed to anything happening. “Talking” is usually a plethora of gifs, emojis, and empty, vapid conversation to fill in the space until you meet (again) in person.

“Dating” Aka you go on dates, but are also going on dates with other people as well.

 “Hooking up” awww yes the most vague expression in the millennial dictionary, and one that almost always needs clarification. Does hooking up mean sex? Making out? Everything but sex?? Who knows! It’s truly a modern mystery of our time. It is the equivalent of dating purgatory between meeting someone better to have sex with or actually deciding to commit to the person whose bed you end up in every time you go out. *strong likelihood that alcohol has influenced this tryst.

“Seeing each other” is more committed than “dating”, but definitely not exclusive. You are probably both seeing other people, but the number of others is dwindling and things are a bit more serious. Careful, you might be getting dangerously close to having “the talk.”

“Sex with an ex”is pretty self-explanatory. You weren’t right for each other at the time, but your bodies are right for each other now. There were reasons you broke up, but the sex was not one of them. You are both under the spell that this couldn’t possibly have consequences or end badly. So young. So naïve.

“Pretty much together” You are basically dating-except not. This is a term that girls will use around their gal pals when their friends ask “so how are things with that guy?” ( as if those bitches don’t know his name after 6 straight months of deciphering every text with you). Girls will say “oh we are pretty much together” in order to not lose face in front of their friends who can probably detect her bullshit a mile away and know perfectly well they are just fucking and he is not going to commit.

“We’re just friends” Tricky. This is something that is said when trying to explain to a third party why you are not having sex. It is either said because you would be embarrassed to be mistaken as together, or you want a get-out-of-jail-free card for why you are not hitting that.
“We’re not exclusive” 1. The last words on your lips right before your partner throws a fit, makes an ultimatum and manipulates you into becoming monogamous. 2. A man’s way of explaining to his bros or potential hookups that he could still fuck if he wanted to.

“Internet affair” Not sure what to call this, but this is when the relationship exists solely in that rectangle in your pocket. You do not hang in rl, but your DMs are flooded with flirty messages, a few illicit photos, and no real commitment.

 “He/she is not ready” what this means is that you are waiting on someone’s back burner to go from B-list to first string. They are seeing others, but keep you hanging around with the promise that “someday” you could be together. You are delusional enough to believe that with a few choice words, and opportune actions you could move up the ladder and actually be their priority. You are likely to get caught saying bullshit things like “now is not a good time for him/her” or ” They are not ready to be with me.” No sweetie, and they never will be.

Unfortunately in Millennial-land it’s a pretty big risk to have the whole “what are we convo”- what if one person is more serious than the other? What if labels are not PC? What if one person has commitment issues? (don’t we all lol). Everybody wants to be the “cool” person in the relationship that does not give a fuck if the other person hooks up with a someone else. Alas, most of us are not that cool, but dammit if we won’t do anything in our power to trick others and ourselves into thinking we do not give a fuck.

As a result, relationships can exist in limbo for weeks, months or even years, never classifying themselves as anything more than a flirtation, and certainly not a real relationship. With this anxiety in place, committed relationships start to resemble a modern Camelot. Do they even exist?

To be honest, if you are in one of these areas for more than a few months somebody just flat out does not want to commit. Sorry, but they are being intentional about not solidifying the relationship. If someone wants to be with you they will take it to the next level and have the conversation that takes you from booty call to plus one at family dinners.

Obviously stuff gets complicated and I am not a big fan of the old standby, “if its meant to be it will be,” but at some point a lot of these grey area relationships need to take a good, long look in the mirror and get real about where they are headed.

It is not cool to lead people on. It is also not cool to stay in relationships that are not gonna give you what you are looking for. Or maybe you’re cool with them not going anywhere- more power to you- but for the rest of us not wanting to die alone, we will see you in therapy. Just remember that casual relationships are only casual if it is consensual.

If you are both cool with your no-strings-attached-sex-consort pact, good for you guys. But if you are unhappy with your relationship status it is imperative to figure out the situation and know when to leave. This is the necessary turning point and it is just not going to magically happen unless you suck it up and confront the situation. Be honest with yourself. Are you staying in a relationship that is not a relationship because the sex is good? Because you don’t want to be alone? Because you don’t want to confront issues in your personal life? You are afraid you will never find anyone better? Because you are afraid of change? None of these are good enough reasons to be complacent in an arrangement that is not giving you what you want or deserve.

Relationships are a total gamble, and frankly there is both dumb-luck and strategy involved. Maybe you both want the same things, but life is complicated and you were both too shy? Maybe they don’t want to be with you but they were enjoying flirting and hooking up? But always know when to walk away. Have the self-respect to step out of a relationship that is not going where you want it to go, if anywhere. But you certainly won’t get anywhere if you don’t take some risks and show your hand once in a while. Don’t be afraid to cut your losses and move the fuck on.

good luck,
Ellie xx

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The Before-You-Date Checklist

Alright let’s take it a step back here. Before you get blisters on your thumbs from swiping on Tinder, it is time for some #realtalk. Are you actually ready to date?

I know this seems like an impertinent, verging on condescending question to ask, but one that is altogether necessary in this new dating climate of casual dating and flings and hookups.

If I am being honest i do not think that many Millennials are truly ready to enter the dating game. I think dating has a bit of an entitled aspect to it in this day and age, where we think that because we are attracted to the opposite gender or have a sex drive or are older than 15, we are ready to go on dates and be in relationships, when in fact you are probably still just an immature, selfish kid. And that is okay, but as long as you are able to own up to that.

What happens is we jump into situations and relationships that require a lot more emotional maturity and self-honesty than we are prepared for and suddenly we have a trail of broken relationships and broken hearts in our baggage. I will tell you a lot about the sorts of people you should stay away from, but it is not always the other person who is a mess. Sometimes we are the mess. We are quick to blame others for relationships that did not fit the Disney images in our heads, instead of confronting our own flaws and irresponsibility.

An uncomfortable truth for many is that a relationship/dating requires a lot of self-honesty about your flaws. And then taking responsibility for those flaws. So no Karen, you don’t just get a free card to be a bitch “because you’re a Capricorn.”

Choosing to be in a relationship/date while still exhibiting irresponsible, manipulative, selfish behavior without any actions to change is careless. Do us all a favor and get the fuck off dating apps.

Contrary to popular practice, dating and relationships is not about fulfilling all your needs and wants or about finding an accessory to your life. If you are looking for an accessory try Claire’s at the mall. It is not about getting everything you want all the time. It is not about getting to sit on pedestal of adoration and fawning. It is not about getting expensive gifts or a piece of arm candy to make you feel good/look good. Frankly, I am sorry we live in a culture that promotes this idea. That the people you date are the problem and not you.

When in fact, it is actually about being selfless and humble.

*And you know what, if you are complaining that you actually are “too selfless” and “give too much of yourself” in a relationship and that you always get burned, you are doing it wrong or for the wrong reasons. Because being selfless should not be exhausting or damaging. it should be life-giving and encouraging. You should never have to give away part of yourself to give to someone else.

Wayyyy too often we are quick to push blame onto our “crazy exes” or those “fuckboi commitmentphobes” instead of taking responsibility for our own inabilities and shortcomings. Sure they probably were a little crazy, but did you push them to act that way? Maybe they did make a huge mistake, but could you have prevented it? Relationships are two-way streets and as burgeoning adults it is high time we start taking some responsibility. Don’t be like T-Swizzle, victimizing herself over and over again, blind to the fact that she is the common denominator in all of her broken relationships and maybe her next single should be called “maybe I am the problem.”

Figuring out where a relationship went amiss begins with taking a good look in the mirror, wiping the bullshit off your ego, and giving yourself a proper dose of humble reality.

First of all, you are probably not as attractive as you think you are. Second, your annoying habits are not always charming and quirky. Third, not everyone is going to think the sun shines out of your ass the way your mother does. Fourth, you are not entitled to some idealistic, fantasy Prince Charming or Victoria Secret Angel. However, If you can take responsibility for your own shortcomings, see where you went wrong and then take steps to work on yourself, congrats you are now a contributing member of society and are now ready to date.

If you are not ready to take the paper bag off your head and stare at your raw, naked self in the mirror, flaws and all, you are probably not ready for a mature, healthy relationship.

Too often we get far too caught up in the shortcomings of our partners, whether they are getting their ass to the gym, whether they are listening when we speak, if they are being ambitious enough, whether they are satisfying us, etc. instead of evaluating our own contributions to the relationship. Because guess what, the only actions and attitudes you are in control of in a relationship are your own.

Here is a quick checklist in order to see whether you are ready to be someone’s significant other. (please read as a job posting with the hours being full time and salary being a lifetime of emotional fulfillment and great sex)

1. Has the ability to think of someone other than yourself
2. Able to successfully communicate(initiate and respond) with another human being using a variety of mediums such as face to face, texting, calling and snap chat.
3. Is aware that their potential significant other is a living, breathing, flawed human and not an accessory, sex vending machine or sponge in which to listen to all of your bullshit
4. Demonstrates a level of emotional intelligence that allows for introspective thought, discussion and development and can be expressed without screaming, crying, manipulative tactics, silent treatments, or any other forms of childish drama.
5. Can successfully articulate one’s feelings
6. Is not looking for a distraction or to fill the empty void in their life
7. Is able to take responsibility for one’s own actions without having to blame, antagonize or justify
8. Capable of handling criticism without falling apart
9. Has a desire to improve one’s self
10. Willingness to do things that are inconvenient, difficult, or no fun for the sole purpose of making someone else happy
11. Has a proven track record of being able to set aside pride and be vulnerable when necessary
12. Can handle not getting their way all the time without storming out of a room, throwing a tantrum, or being an attention whore in any capacity.
13. Has zero desire to punish or seek revenge against people who have wronged you or not treated you the way you wanted to be treated.

If you can confirm that you are taking active steps to work on achieving the above criteria, then congrats you are not a piece of trash person and can pass go, collect 200$ and feel free to date to your heart’s content. Otherwise, please go find the nearest mirror and have a serious chat with yourself about needing to grow the fuck up and act like a mature adult. Do I sound harsh? That is probably because I am tired of living in a world of entitled dating where it is all about YOU. I am tired of a dating culture that is nauseatingly self-serving, and completely void of any sense of accountability or integrity. Go ahead ignore people, pump and dump, fuck the flavor of the month, whatever you feel like because life is all about doing whatever you want 24 hours a day anyways.

Wrong.

The truth is that if you are not actively pursing the above criteria you are going to spend a lot of time in shitty relationships feeling shitty. Now I get it we all make mistakes. I am a shitty person, you are a shitty person, we are a world full of shitty people, but the difference is how we fight it. Don’t succumb to your own shittiness.

Fight the urges to be selfish and prideful and arrogant and vindictive and petty. Fight it because they only hurt you in the end. Only looking out for yourself results in an empty, lonely life full of people who don’t want to spend any time with you. The decision to fight your own selfishness every single day is a step that will be far more gratifying and fulfilling, oh and will probably contribute to some much better dating experiences. If you don’t feel ready to do this, okay that’s on you and at least you know where you stand, but don’t be confused when you have a trail of broken relationships in your wake.

Begin by taking responsibility for your own actions and recognizing your own shittiness. Call yourself out. Let others call you out. Instead of trying to justify your own behavior and make excuses and defend yourself, or blame your astrology sign, take the criticism, understand the other person’s view point and apply it in some way to your own behavior. Become a discerning consumer of criticism, knowing what to listen to and what to not let bother you.

Once you can master this…well you’ll probably be dead because this takes a lifetime to master, but now is a great time to get cracking.

Too often relationships become very selfish matters, absorbed in our own personal needs and egos rather than the person we supposedly “care” about. Don’t let this be you. Rise above the masses of those seeking selfish sexual experiences and trying to push all their insecurities onto another person. Be a step ahead of the rest of this ego-centric generation and catch your bullshit before you weave yourself into a web of bitter nihilism whom you loudly berate your exes for. Be better than that.

I am not here to seek perfection, in fact I want to recognize the inherent flaws in us all. Rather, I am tired of being apart of a dating culture that is so use to getting what they want and instant gratification that they are willing to give up the transformative experience of self-development in favor of a cushy life as a selfish dick.

Good luck,
Ellie xxx

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Swiping Right vs. The Slow Burn: A quick guide to sexual tension

 

In 2018 we really like to get things immediately. And fortunately for us the advent of technology allows us to have it all as close to instantly as possible. We get to binge all 7 seasons of Mad Men at once without commercials. We can have our fave restaurant delivered to our door step. We can order a pair of shoes and have it arrive later that day via drones. All in all 2018 is pretty sweet.

But if I am honest I don’t think the whole instant gratification thing translates to romance. Yeah sure, Tinder allows for us to have a hookup arrive in 30 minutes or less like it’s a fucking pizza delivery, but where is the sexual tension? Where is the building of anticipation? What happened to the development of chemistry? Even if you’re just after sex and not a real connection with someone, the whole instant gratification of the Tinder model deprives us what actually makes romance great!

I am not out to bash Tinder, it has it’s purpose, but if your goal is to develop real chemistry with someone, dating apps are going to leave you frustrated, exhausted and probably cynical about love.

Tinder has reduced attraction to something that can be measured within seconds, when in reality, true, authentic attraction builds over time. On Tinder, sexual chemistry is rated right away and expected to exist instantaneously. You can start sexting or sending pics with someone whom you have never even met. You meet people under a preconceived notion that there is an already existing sexual attraction because you are a “match.”

Swiping forfeits the developmental portion of attraction where you get to know someone and then decide through conversation, interactions and body language whether you find them attractive beyond outward appearance. Initial, physical attraction is close to meaningless for women. Women do NOT date for looks. Yeah, we like a nice man to look at, or strong arms to throw us up against a wall, but that is not why we are attracted to someone. Hence, men should understand the value in the slow burn approach when it comes to seducing women. Tinder very much abides by a shallow perception of attraction in which attraction is purely visual. While visual attraction is obviously a component, it is ridiculous for anyone to think that real attraction can be judged from a static image.

Tinder operates under the assumption that you are already attracted to one another before you even say hello and so you can skip the first few steps of relationshional development. Lots of Tinder users utilize this format to get right to sexual intimacy before the relationship has had any time to mature or for any chemistry to truly develop. Instant gratification reduces relational development to first impressions and a shallow façade.

You know what they say, the best things in life come to those who wait. Call me old fashioned, but it is all about the slow burn. I am not just talking “3 days before texting rules” and “waiting until the 3rd date for sex,” I am talking about the importance of building sexual tension and chemistry over time in order to not only keep things spicy, but to build a better foundation for the relationship. Here is what to know:

  1.  In the slow burn flirting happens over the course of weeks, months or even years as opposed to days or hours, and produces greater intimacy and intensified longing- both are integral parts of romance.
  2. Eye contact, body language and interpersonal flirty banter over a period of time deepen levels of chemistry and mutual sexual attraction in which feelings have time to marinate and mature and intensify. These components are absent from dating apps. So if you are going the dating app route it is imperative to keep the texting minimal and meet up as soon as possible. The error many people make with dating apps is that they ‘try and get to know one another’ before meeting up, and while this seems prudent it diminishes the window in which you are both interested. People often lose interest very quickly over dating apps because the relationship fizzles before the two people have even met. Meeting up is the chance to install humanity in the experience and connect via body language and interpersonal communication cues. Both are imperative to truly “getting to know someone.”
  3.  Sexual seeds are planted with mental stimualtion such as debates and intellectual conversations, passionate rants, and witty reparte, rather than the small get-to-know you talk that occurs in the early stages of a relationship. Deeper, more meaningful conversations take time and come as a result of prolonged time together. They emerge as both parties test the waters of vulnerability and compatibility.
  4. Prolonged tension is good for a relationship – without tension and rising action there is no climax (literally and figuratively)
  5. The slow burn always anticipates that there is somewhere more for the relationship to go because not all the cards have been shown. This is what keeps both parties interested and wanting more. This means if you are into a woman do not play all your big cards right away. You should never take a woman on a fancy date or buy her an extravagant gift prior to being in an actual, exclusive relationship. If you show your cards too soon it diminishes the value of your commitment and appears desperate. A woman should feel like she is being seduced for a long period of time where the relationship just gets better with age. Like wine. Or cheese.
  6. Long-term seduction produces satisfaction because nothing good ever comes easily. Women especially feel that any love worth having should be earned.
  7. The best sex involves emotion on both accounts, in which stimulation is derived not from just physical pleasure but from feelings of frustration, longing, tension, love, joy, thrill etc. Therefore the best sex is going to be with someone you have an emotional connection with. And while the whole stranger thing can be hot, I am guessing it does not have the same satisfaction as with someone whom you have real chemistry and intimacy with. Very few women orgasm during a one-night stand (20% i believe) because there is absolutely an emotional component to sex that is imperative to satisfaction.
  8. The slow burn is sort of the equivlevent of the farm to table movement or the slow food movement (rebuttal to fast food) or to a hand stiched garmet- it is far more valuable and satisfying and will last a hell of a lot longer because it took time to be prepared.
  9. Chemistry and romance are dishes best served in a 10 course meal, not from the grab-and-go counter

Obviously Tinder has it’s time and place and we all know that ridiculously happy couple that met through a dating app, but my point is not that dating apps are bad, only that the model of instant gratification does not work for romance or relationships. The best relationships are the ones that build tension and chemistry and intimacy over time, always smoldering, in need of constant stoking.

Perhaps this is why so many Millennials are dissatisfied with the current dating climate, we have lost interest in the thrills of the slow burn because we have been socialized to want and expect instant gratification. We want companionship NOW. We want a relationship NOW. We want a hookup NOW. But waiting and tension and suspense are healthy and lead to far more satisfaction physically, emotionally and mentally. And its hot. It’s way hotter.

good luck,

Ellie xx

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Millennials vs. Vulnerability: Who is Really Winning??

 

 

What scares Millennials most in the world? The rising cost of housing? Looming student loan debt? Net Neutrality? No wifi? Negative. A Millennial’s worst fear is the prospect of vulnerability. I don’t merely mean talking about your childhood, I mean having to tell a guy you like how you really feel about them. Double texting someone that has not responded to you in four days. Having to ask someone “what are we?” *cue music from Jaws* You know what I am talking about. This sort of “put your dignity on the line” honesty is what instills fear in us like nothing else can.

To be specific, unreciprocated vulnerability is what scares us most. It is being too accessible to someone who is not accessible to us. It is crossing oceans for someone who would not cross a puddle for you. Unrequited vulnerability says I am giving more than I am getting. I am being manipulated and extorted and used. I am the only one who cares. As a result, vulnerability feels weak and exposed and helpless.

We are so terrified of being someone’s number two that we are willing to play any number of exhausting games, say any number of lies, and sabotage our own relationships to reduce vulnerability, or at least the appearance of vulnerability.

That is the thing about vulnerability in Millennials, we are far more concerned with the façade than we are what’s going on in the inside. We would rather look perfect on the outside and be a mess on the inside than vice versa. We would rather let someone we care about think that we don’t give a shit about the relationship, and its all casual and “no string attached,” but be in emotional turmoil on the inside, than tell someone what we are really thinking. We would rather make someone else feel lesser, than have to feel the pain of unrequited vulnerability. Heaven forbid someone think that we care more than they do.

As a generation, we are pretty okay with physical vulnerability like nudity and sex, it’s that emotional vulnerability that frightens us. Ironically, emotional vulnerability and physical vulnerability are deeply intertwined, although we would love to pretend that they are not. We love to separate them as estranged entities when in fact physical vulnerability is often a direct ticket to “catching feels.” From there, emotional vulnerability is the first stop on a long road trip of heartbreak and crushed self-esteem.

Now we are a generation that is ridiculously cynical when it comes to “catching feels.” And rightly so, “catching feels” is the worst. Like I would rather have my naked body dragged across hot coals and thrown into a pool of gasoline than catch feels. Catching feels is the ultimate gateway to vulnerability, and once you’ve opened the door you can’t go back. You either have to get over this person (an often long and arduous process) or dwell in emotional turmoil for an indefinite period. Yippee. Dating is so fun.

As a result, we have become a generation of defensive daters. It is all about protecting our own dignity and hearts no matter the costs. It does not matter if we ghost that guy or reject that girl and never speak to her again, as long as our own dignity is intact. As long as we have protected our hearts and minds from actually falling for someone. We don’t mind hurting someone else’s feelings as long as our own feelings are not hurt.

It is okay for someone else to be vulnerable, as long as we get to remain aloof and apathetic, because the person who cares the least is the person with all the power in the relationship. Control is power. The ability to manipulate a situation. The feeling of supremacy. The capacity to influence. For Millennials, vulnerability is a roadblock in our ability to remain in control and possess power.

Now apart from being wrapped up in a culture that tells us to care very much what others think and to groom ourselves to be perceived a certain way, being guarded is also a matter of self-respect for millennials. We see it as dignifying to be stingy with our vulnerability. We feel that our self-worth is somehow wrapped up in how much we have exposed of ourselves.

For Millennials, vulnerability is a currency, and you want to be as frugal as possible. To some extent this isn’t wrong. You wouldn’t go in the middle of the street and yell your deepest darkest secrets, not because they define you, but because you respect yourself more than to just bare your secrets to anyone. Yet, there is a fine line between self-respect and being emotionally stingy.

We have somewhat misguidedly deemed self-respect to be only investing in a relationship where we are sure to get a return. While there is truth in guarding your heart and protecting yourself, there is no such thing as a relationship with a 100% probability of investment growth. Most often a gamble is necessary. If we never take the risk there is never the reward.

This imbalance of investment that we fear so much is pretty much the root of all relational conflict. I first realized this when I was upset with a friend who I felt was avoiding me. There was no conflict. Yet I felt the distance growing between us even though we lived together. I would ask her about her day and ask her to hang out, but she was always aloof and “too busy.” It felt terrible. It took me a while, but I realized that what I was really truly upset about was not that she was not hanging out with me or spending time on our relationship, it was that I felt that I cared more about her than she cared about me.

Think about it. Whether romantic or a friendship or family relationships, relational conflict is derived from one person caring more than the other person or at least a perceived feeling of such. I think this realization was a huge step in gaining perspective about conflict. Rarely are we really upset about an unanswered text or showing up late or a failed promise. Rather what’s truly bothering us is a fear that we care about someone more than they care about us. Being on the non-reciprocated side can really hurt. It feels degrading. And as Millennials, this is a pain we are willing to do almost anything to avoid. We would rather come off as cold and aloof than lower ourselves to tell someone we care about them if we feel that it won’t be reciprocated.

I remember back in good ol’ 2003 watching Lizzie McGuire, and in one particular episode Lizzie was going to tell resident hottie, Ethan Kraft, that she had a crush on him. I remember watching in horror as Lizzie bared her soul to a guy who was nice enough, but clearly did not feel the same way about her. How could Lizzie be so stupid? Didn’t she respect herself? Didn’t she care about being embarrassed?? I remember the horror my 9-year-old self felt as I watched Lizzie throw caution to the wind and embarrass herself in font of him. Even then I saw such vulnerability as something to be avoided like the Bubonic Plague. I carried this mantra with me for the next 15 years. I would never tell anyone that I liked them unless I was sure that they felt the same. The alternative, was not just humiliating, it was a degrading shot to the ego, and totally avoidable. I couldn’t understand why Lizzie had wanted to share that info if she did not have to. No one was making her tell Ethan!

But that is the thing about Millennials. Millennnials are total control freaks. We are obsessed with trying to control and manipulate our circumstances. And when it comes to feelings and dating we want to control that too. Everything is a power play with us. Perhaps it has something to do with trying to combat our role as the world’s scapegoat. Or perhaps it is that nasty sense of entitlement we are so often accused of having. Or maybe it has to do with us being socialized to have control over everything in our lives the same way we exhibit control over other instantly gratifying things like Netflix and Uber. Either way we view control as a necessary means of achieving success and happiness. We feel that if we can just master our emotions and minimize our vulnerability then we will have total control and no one can hurt us.

The truth is that the path to successful and fulfilling relationships is paved with heartbreak and embarrassment, and yes, lots and lots of vulnerability. Maybe Lizzie McGuire had more emotional intelligence than we did back in middle school after all.

Vulnerability is what relinquishes us from the prison of perfectionism and having to maintain a façade. Vulnerability is what prepares us to be authentic and honest and communicative with one another. Vulnerability is the framework behind growth and development and self-awareness. Without vulnerability we remain stagnant. Vulnerability drives us out of our comfort zones and into our truest potential. Vulnerability doesn’t mean not caring what other people think, it is seeing the bigger picture beyond the temporary feelings of fear and anxiety. Vulnerability can be a worthwhile, calculated risk. If we never take the risk, we will certainly never get the reward.

As a Millennial myself, I totally get it. We’ve all been hurt one too many times and the wounds of our previous experiences with vulnerability still sting. We promise ourselves to be miserly with our vulnerability in order to protect our fragilie hearts. We never want to get hurt again. Yet, at some point we are going to have to humble ourselves just a bit, and go out and catch some damn feels and not expect anything in return. No 100% probability of texting back. No games. No favorably calculated circumstances. No tit for tat dating rules. No playing hard to get. No facade of nonchalance.

Maybe #livingyourbestlife does not have to always mean sipping sangria on a yacht in Spain, maybe it can also apply to scary moments of telling someone you care about how you really feel. Maybe it could even be a choice to text someone back immediately or call them instead of texting. Maybe vulnerability is not a plague to be avoided, but an opportunity to be embraced.

 

good luck,

Ellie xo

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