Dec 31, 2010

New Year's Dating Resolutions

It's about that time again to start thinking ahead for the new year...one of the most exciting things about ringing in a new year is the fact that it's an opportunity to start all over, have a fresh new start.  New Year's resolutions abound, and self-improvement is on everyone's mind.  This New Year's, try following the dating resolutions below, and you'll soon be on your way to a bangin' new love life! ;)

1) If you're single, throw away your "list".  You know the one - everyone has one.  "He must be 6'2'', a doctor or lawyer, witty, hot, funny, and with charm to spare," or "She must be a 10, love sports, cooking, cleaning, and know how to light up a room."  Most of the time, the people we end up with are almost completely different from what we have on that list, anyway, so chucking it is the first step to rejuvenating your love life and meeting someone new.  Keep an open mind, and you never know - Mr. Right may have been right in front of you all this time (standing in line at Starbucks in his "never in a million years would I date a surfer" attire!).

2) Never let your world revolve around one person.  This is a recipe for disaster, no matter how long you've been in a relationship with someone.  Not having your own separate life with your own hobbies, friends, and family creates undue stress on a relationship, making you depend more on it for your sense of happiness.  No one person wants to be completely responsible for someone else's happiness (unless they have major control issues!), so letting your world revolve around your significant other (SO) spells imminent doom for your relationship.  Maintain a balanced life, with friends, family, your own hobbies, and work (or school) as well as your relationship, and this will allow you to truly appreciate the time you do spend with your SO.

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Dec 29, 2010

Would You Have Your Fiance's Ex Be In Your Wedding Party?


That's exactly what this woman did, and not only was her fiance's ex in the wedding party, she was the maid of honor!!  That's definitely unexpected and not something the majority of people (myself included) would even imagine doing.  The awkward potential is usually a little too high for most people to even picture doing this, but this woman's situation was slightly different and unique.  To read more about her story, click here.

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Dec 20, 2010

Best Last-Minute Gifts for Your Significant Other

So it's less than a week before Christmas, and you're freaking out because you still haven't gotten your girl or guy a Christmas present yet...no need to fret!  These thoughtful gift ideas will have them thinking you've been planning their gift for ages.  And the best part - there's no wrapping required!  Some of the best gifts are the ones of experience, which don't require any wrapping, or waiting for it to arrive in the mail ;)  Below, the best last-minute gifts for your significant other!

1) Wine- or food-tasting tour.  If your significant other is a foodie or wine connoisseur, this is the perfect gift.  Take your beau on a food- or wine-tasting tour in your city and indulge in the tastes the city has to offer.  There doesn't necessarily need to be a tour available during this time of the year to make this your gift - buying tickets in advance can help build the anticipation, and will give you time to plan ahead for something special.

2) Donation to their favorite cause or charity.  If your significant other has a cause or charity that they are very invested in, giving a donation in their name is the perfect Christmas gift.  Whether it's a donation to the Red Cross or the local SPCA, whatever cause or charity it is that your beau supports or believes in, a donation is a great way to show your support as well.  This is perfect for the guy or girl who already has everything they could want or enjoys giving gifts more than receiving them.

3) Tickets to a play.  Guys, if your girl always complains that you never take her anywhere nice, this is a great gift to show you've been listening and taking notes!  A play is a great experience to take in together (and a great excuse for her to get all dolled up!).  Check local listings for plays in your area.  Great plays to check out during the holidays are The Nutcracker, A Christmas Carol, and It's A Wonderful Life. Other great plays to check out throughout the year - if last minute tickets for the Christmas season are hard to find - include Wicked, Les Miserables, and Phantom of the Opera.

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Dec 12, 2010

Stay Close During Holiday Chaos

You should feel festive during the holiday season, so why the urge to drop-kick your man across the room? Cope this way.

By Stephanie Booth

Ah, the holidays. Christmas lights. Eggnog. Baked ham. Presents. Fighting like cats and dogs with your guy. Yep, 'tis the season to put a strain on couples everywhere.

"Your life pace, obligations, and social and family commitments all go into overdrive around this time of year," explains Christine Murray, Ph.D., assistant professor of family counseling at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. "And unfortunately, that added activity — even if it's all fun and festive — can create a lot of tension, frustration, and exhaustion that often hits your relationship hardest." To ensure you're not tempted to slap him under the mistletoe, we've compiled a hit list of strategies to keep the love alive throughout this wild party season and all year long.

You spend a jam-packed weekend together going from one party to the next, but come Sunday night, you feel like you haven't seen your guy at all. "That's because when you share your space with other people, you pay less attention to each other and it can be a real challenge to feel connected," says Murray. "Being in the same room isn't enough to create that intimacy you need to stay close."

Little check-ins over the course of the night can make all the difference, according to Murray. So before you enter the party, schedule a couple of moments when you will meet up throughout the evening — say, at 8:30, 9:15, and then 10 o'clock — even if it's just to say "Hey, hot stuff" or share a quick story about your night so far. It will keep you both feeling linked and attuned to each other, despite the crowds.

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Dec 5, 2010

Food for Thought: Should A Woman Be Financially Dependent On A Man?

Something that was once a norm in romantic relationships in times past, but has now become less and less of a standard for modern relationships, is a woman's complete financial dependence on a man from the beginning of a relationship.  Since as recently as the middle of the last century, having a man pay for everything - from dates to clothes to your daily living expenses - was perfectly acceptable.  Since almost the beginning of time, one of the best chances for a "good life" for a woman was to find a rich husband who would take care of her (and possibly even her family); if a woman accomplished this fete, she'd be "set for life". 

As time has passed, of course, many things have changed.  Women now basically have almost all of the same rights as men in most developed countries around the world, and standards of dating and relationships have also evolved because of that.  A woman no longer needs to depend on a man for economic survival - she's perfectly capable of earning her own living and creating her own success, often even surpassing her mate's success.

What I'm referring to doesn't apply to marriage, of course, since married couples will inevitably have shared finances and different arrangements for who is the primary breadwinner and who will stay home to raise the kids (if there are any), whether it be the man or woman.  What I'm referring to is when a woman is in a relationship with a man and becomes financially dependent on him from the get-go.  Is this wise on her part? 

From my perspective, if you're still just dating a guy and not married to him, being completely financially dependent on him is one of the worst positions you could put yourself in as a woman.  Think about it - your financial well-being depends on him (assuming you have no other source of income), so if he leaves you, you're in for a whole lotta trouble, seeing as how you two aren't married so you won't be getting any kind of spousal support (or child support assuming you two don't have kids).  You're basically taking a gamble here. 

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Nov 27, 2010

Style Files: November '10 Men

With cold weather officially settling in, it's time to gear up for winter with some new updates to your wardrobe. For a quick fix, stock up on outerwear in the latest styles, or add a few accessories with a fresh twist (such as a brooch) to liven up your winter look.

1) Suit trends. Suits are the staple in every man's wardrobe, and keeping up-to-date with the latest trends helps you stay on top of the latest looks without much effort.

a) Sack suits. What’s old is new again this season with the Chaplin-style sack suits that are showing up on many designer runways, from Ralph Lauren to Michael Kors. This revival of an early twentieth century style has a fresh update, with a shorter length and two buttons (instead of three) giving it a whole new feel. Spotted all over the Ralph Lauren runway, sack suits bring a sense of old world style to a work and play staple.



Sack suits on the runway at Ralph Lauren Autumn/Fall 2010.

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Nov 24, 2010

Seven Cozy Date Night Ideas

Baby, it's cold outside! Warm up with these hot ideas for cool nights.

By Samantha Leal

1. Start cooking

Nothing turns up the heat more literally than cooking. Grab your spouse (or significant other) and make your favorite meal together. Open a bottle of wine, and you've got the makings of a great evening.

2. Go sledding
Okay, so this seems a bit off-topic (how is being outside and zooming down a hill considered "cozy") but stay with me here. Think about it: You're all squished together on a sled for two, cruising down a hill. Cozy! Plus, afterward, you'll need to get warm again by getting out of those damp clothes (ahem), cuddling up, and drinking some cocoa.

3. Put on some skates
There's a reason why every romantic movie (at least the ones set in the winter) has an ice-skating scene. Because it's super romantic! Head to your local rink where you can hold hands, chat, and laugh about each other's sore rears after you fall down.

4. See a show
Support your local community theatre (and get cultured, gosh darn it!) by catching a performance. Better yet, go for opening night and get dolled up beforehand. It's a nice break from the dinner-and-a-movie routine.

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Nov 15, 2010

Online Dating Profile Mistakes


With online dating becoming more and more commonplace as time passes (recent statistics show online dating may be bigger than porn), learning how to create a great dating profile can be crucial to your dating success online.  (For tips on how to create a great online profile, click here.)

While being honest and forthright is key, there are a few mistakes that some online daters can make that will repel more potential dates than it will attract.  Below, some common online dating mistakes you should avoid!

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Nov 13, 2010

How to Break a Toxic Love Pattern

Even though you swear your exes are totally different, experts say most women have a relationship pattern they keep going back to.  See how to break yours for a love that won't leave you hurting.

By Korin Miller

We were shocked when we heard that the first guy Rihanna seriously dated after Chris Brown had been accused of domestic abuse by an ex-girlfriend. After everything she went through, it would seem as if she'd be repulsed by men with that kind of reputation.

Turns out, the opposite is more likely to be true. "Most of us have a relationship pattern — that same type of guy we keep falling for — and it can work for or against us," says couples therapist Deborah Dunn, author of Stupid About Men. "It's not uncommon for women to keep going back to the type that wronged them in the past." How do you change whom you're drawn to dating? It's not easy, but it starts with figuring out where your attraction to these guys came from in the first place.

Family Ties
Experts say we develop our taste in men at a young age — anywhere from childhood to adolescence. "Whether it's positive or negative, everyone has a relationship pattern based on what they learned about love when they were growing up," says Alon Gratch, Ph.D., author of If Love Could Think.

Repeatedly choosing the wrong guys signals that you may be driven to re-create the drama you had with your father or first boyfriend. Many women who had an absentee dad or let the arrogant JV football captain string them along for years will go for men who are unavailable or talk down to them because they're subconsciously trying to resolve things with the guy who let them down earlier in life, says Dunn — even though, clearly, that's not solving anything.

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Nov 7, 2010

Did You Know That iPhone Users Have More Sex Than Blackberry or Android Users?


As if iPhone users needed another reason to love the iPhone, a recent poll done by the popular dating website OK Cupid shows that iPhone users got more action than both Blackberry and Android users, with iPhone users clocking in with the most average sexual partners, Blackberry users coming in second, and Android users in last place.  Of all groups, females had a higher average number of sexual partners than did men. 

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Nov 4, 2010

Why She Criticizes You

By Farah Averill

A near universal experience for men is being criticized or nagged by their girlfriends or wives. Feeling like no matter what you do, you can’t seem to make your partner’s irksome behavior stop is another commonality uniting men the world over. Interestingly, it’s not happenstance that men find themselves in the position of being criticized more than the other way around. Differing biology and socialization both play a role in explaining why men tend to be the ones who get criticized in a relationship. If you can identify with being the target of a woman’s wrath, then this article is for you. Read on to learn exactly what it is that makes your girlfriend explode and how you can successfully encourage her to ease off.

Women express themselves differently
While the extent to which biology and socialization respectively influence how men and women express themselves has yet to be determined, research has demonstrated that women tend to produce more emotion-oriented messages than men. One study, for example, found that, when asked to write a story about love, men’s narratives were 50% shorter than women’s (Barbara, 2008). As well, evidence suggests that men are more likely to favor a problem-focused approach in response to a stressful situation, whereas women will focus on emotional support.

In your relationship, these differing styles of expression explain why, when you take out the trash as a symbolic gesture of your feelings for your partner, she won’t necessarily understand the loving intentions behind this act. Also, when your significant other is telling you about her stressful day, though your inclination is to help her find a solution to her difficulty, she’s actually seeking supportive words rather than concrete help. These gender differences mean that you may find that your partner frequently accuses you of being insufficiently loving because she’s expecting you to be more emotionally attuned and expressive.

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Nov 2, 2010

Q & A - Why Is My Ex Bugging Me?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I have written to you a few times already, and this time it's about the same situation, about my ex-boyfriend...we broke up almost a year ago, and yet he is still coming around and bothering me.  When we broke up, he was the one who broke up with me, and I wanted to get back together. I don't know what he wants, and I'm afraid to confront him. We had not spoken for about 9 months now.  All of a sudden, he decided to come over to my house one day out of the blue, and we ended up talking about the most random things.  He kept talking about his life and kept asking about mine.  I didn't talk much, just kept trying to cut the conversation short.

The next day, though, he acts as if he doesn't even know I exist...for the past few weeks, he's been acting all nice and friendly one moment and then all mean and cold the next, as if as though he's PMSing or something. I still have feelings for him, and I'm taking it slowly being his friend, but his way of showing his "friendship" towards me is a bit weird...I mean he even tries to talk to me via MSN chat, but he gives me one word IM's like, "Hey, "Sup," "Okay," etc., and it's driving me nuts!  I've also noticed that he's been stalking me on Facebook, because he knows all these things that's been happening in my life when we talk.  He even asked my friend who I've been seeing lately.  He's driving me crazy!  I can't even sleep at night, because of all these little things that is bottling up inside me.  Please help!

Sincerely,

Candice

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Oct 30, 2010

How to Minimize the Possibility of Cheating In Your Relationship

Besides being dumped, being cheated on is probably the worst fear of anyone who's ever been in a relationship before.  Although it is true that if you're with someone who's a chronic cheater that there may be very little you can do to stop them, for the rest of the population, there may be some steps you can take to minimize the possibility of cheating in your relationship.  Read on for some tips you can take to help cheatproof your relationship.

1) Define what cheating is to you.  Believe it or not, not everyone's definition of cheating is the same.  For some, it encompasses what most people consider cheating, such as kissing or having sex with someone else.  For others, only going so far as having sex with someone else is considered cheating (some people don't consider kissing cheating, believe it or not). 

There's also that gray area called "emotional cheating", where there is no physical contact involved, but a person would spend time with another person (who's not their boyfriend or girlfriend) and have feelings for them (and have that person reciprocate those feelings).  Some people consider emotional cheating the most dangerous kind of cheating of all (since feelings aren't something you can control or change), but to me, all kinds of cheating is bad. 

Temptation will always be there - just because you are in a relationship doesn't mean you're blind.  If you are in a happy relationship and are put in a compromising position where cheating could become a possibility (such as spending time alone with someone you find attractive who's also attracted to you), know when to remove yourself before something could occur.  Relationships with minimal boundaries are the ones where cheating is most likely to happen.

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Oct 28, 2010

Food for Thought: Men Who Say "All Guys Are Dogs" Are the Dogs

Let me first preface by saying that this isn't meant to be a man-hating rant, but rather, is quite the opposite; this post is meant to defend men, and to debunk a common stereotype that I've heard for as long as I can remember.  You've probably all heard the phrase, "All men are dogs," at one time or another, and - if you're a woman - may even have come to believe this at some point in time.  This stereotype, in it's most basic form, basically is saying that all men are horny, indiscriminate cheaters who'll hump anything, and will not hesitate to cheat if given the chance.  From my experience and point of view, this is a completely unfair assumption, and I will tell you why.

From what I've seen, there are usually two types of people who say and believe this, and they are:

1) Scorned women.
2) Men who are dogs themselves.

The first group, the scorned women, is pretty self-explanatory.  If a woman has been burned enough times by the same type of guy, it's not really any wonder that she'd come to believe this one day.  The second group, however, usually isn't as easy to spot for what they are, and have an underlying reason for why they'd be so quick to jump on the "All men are dogs" bandwagon. 

You see, guys who readily believe (or say) that all men are dogs are usually the dogs themselves, and will say it freely to others (especially females) for the goal of either trying to justify their own behavior, or to try to attract the woman they're telling this to. (I know! Talk about lame pick-up lines, right??)  Their justification?  "All men were born to want to have sex with multiple women.  It's something we have no control over, so you can't blame us."  If they then screw up, what better excuse to use than the lame-ass, "But I'm a man!" line??

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Oct 23, 2010

Q & A - I'm Not Sexually Attracted to My Husband Anymore

Q. Dear Alannah,

I've been married to my husband for about a year now, been together for three years before that.  Over the past year we've been together, he's gained 35 lbs., and during that time, my sexual attraction for him has slowly decreased.  Don't get me wrong, I still love him very, very much, and find him incredibly handsome still, but the passion has decreased because I don't find him sexy anymore ever since his weight gain.  With the recent weight gain, his body has changed dramatically, from moobs when his shirt is off (sorry if this is TMI, but I need to be thorough so you know where I'm coming from!) to his weight on me being difficult to handle when we are in bed.

When we have sex lately, I often feel like I'm having sex with him just because I should, not because I am in the mood or want to; it feels more like an obligation lately than something I naturally want to do.  He is also only 29 years old.  Why does this matter?  Well, it makes me think that if he looks like this at 29, then how unhealthy will he be at 50?  I'm worried about the sexual attraction, yes, but I'm even more worried about his health.
 
He has admitted that he is unhappy about his body and wants to lose weight, and we have tried all kinds of things, including going to the gym together, but in the end, he doesn't stick to it and doesn't make it a priority.  I want to help him with this so that our sex life can improve, but I don't know how.  I know that this can become a real problem in the long run for us if we don't fix it.  What can I do to help him lose weight and help improve our sex life?

Sincerely,

Dara

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Oct 21, 2010

Guy Drops the Ring During Brooklyn Bridge Marriage Proposal

By Brian Fairbanks - Trey Turner and Kelsey Kramer have two things in common (besides repeat initials): 1) They are madly in love, and 2) were involved in one of the most disastrous marriage proposals we've ever heard of.

Turner took Kramer for a stroll on the Brooklyn Bridge last week to propose. When he went for the engagement ring, it slipped from his trembling fingers and fell through a grate.

"When I dropped the ring my initial reaction was just disbelief," Turner tells Asylum. "As we first got to the bridge, I noticed the slats and thought about how the ring would slip right through the different slats. I was being so careful, I didn't understand how it could have happened."

But it happened -- every would-be groom's worst nightmare. (Well, other than "No").

Turner immediately tried to fish the ring out of the slats, but couldn't find it. He gave up and alerted city workers to his predicament while his girlfriend -- not yet fiancee -- held a hand over her mouth in a mixture of horror and excitement at the proposal itself.

Keep reading for more of our interview with Turner, who reveals how he got the ring back in the most roundabout way possible.

Giving up the ghost, Turner went on tour with his band The Icarus Account and let his mother pray that someone would find it. Magically, Doug Reese, a bridge worker for the Department of Transportation, uncovered the jewel on Friday and brought it back to Kramer's apartment, where he ended up being the one to "put a ring on it."

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Oct 18, 2010

What Would You Do If You Found Out Your Crush May Have Sexually Assaulted Someone?


That's the question this girl was faced with after Googling her crush and finding out he was charged with rape a few years before.  It was at a party with a girl he knew, and the article she found described "bite marks," "bruises," and "restraints".  After talking to him and hearing the whole story from his point of view (he said he didn't do it), the two never talked again.  To read more, click here.

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Oct 13, 2010

Halloween Date Ideas

Halloween is the perfect time of year for first dates, and romantic dates in general!  From the beautiful Fall weather to the sense of fun and mystery in the air, (not to mention the many sexy, scandalous Halloween get-ups that are bound to be seen around town that night!) Halloween is the perfect time to take your date out - or stay in - and enjoy the scary and scandalous festivities together!  Below, some date ideas that will help set the mood for Halloween!

1) Masquerade ball or party.  If there's anything a girl loves, it's a masquerade ball.  Think masked strangers, tight corsets, sexy costumes, and flowing champagne...this is Halloween for grown-ups, done up in style!  Co-host a masquerade party with your beau or with friends, and keep it simple - tell guests about the dress code (masks required), and have some spares at the front door just in case. 

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Oct 11, 2010

Q & A - My Girlfriend Is Acting Distant

Q. Dear Alannah,

So my girlfriend and I have been going out for over a year now, and lately things have changed for us, seemingly for the worst.  She used to call and text me every night, but lately, she's stopped responding to my texts or picking up on many of my calls.  She also has broken plans twice now, and both times she said it was because she's tired from work and school, but she STILL had time to see her girlfriends last weekend.

I feel like things are coming to an end for us, but I want to see if there's still a way to salvage the relationship.  What should I do?  Should I wait until she comes back around, or talk to her and ask her what's going on??

Sincerely,

Tired of Waiting

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Oct 5, 2010

Did You Know Money Isn't the Culprit in Most Divorces?


We've all heard the saying before that money is the #1 cause of divorce -- in some cases, it may be, but as it turns out, the information that that's based on is outdated and based on research that's over a half century old.  According to this article, money actually typically only ranks no higher than fourth or fifth as a cause of divorce in real cases, with lack of emotional support, incompatibility, abuse and/or sexual problems typically ranking higher.

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Oct 2, 2010

Q & A - So My Friend and I Hooked Up -- What Should I Do Now?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I have a guy friend who I've had a romantic past with before who I hooked up with recently.  We have dated on and off for the past several years, and the other night, after years of this "stop and start" romantic history, we finally hooked up.  It wasn't planned, and it just happened - we were just hanging out at his place the other night, one thing led to another, and before you know it, we ended up in bed. 

Now, I'm not sure where we stand.  I do have feelings for him, but we haven't talked yet since it happened, and it's been two days.  I want to talk to him about it, but should I wait until he calls, or call him?  Should we talk in person or on the phone?  Shouldn't he have called me by now?  What should I do??

Sincerely,

Mandy

A. Dear Mandy,

There may be a number of reasons why your friend hasn't called yet, but sitting there and imagining all of the different scenarios won't help any.  What you should do is go ahead and call him up, ask if he wants to hang out, and then discuss it with him then.

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Sep 29, 2010

Five Reasons Men Like Cougars

Younger guys have plenty of reasons to like women of a certain age and life experience. Here are five often-mentioned advantages to hooking up with an older woman.

By Maura Kelly -

In my ongoing role as "Cradle Robber #1", I date a lot of youngsters. In fact, I may or may not have recently been out on a date with someone born six years before I was. My dad likes to call these guys "crumb-snatchers" as in, little people so young they are toddling on the floor, snatching at crumbs that have fallen.

My predilection for the babies (or shall we call it my cougar-erificness?) is probably not in need of much explanation. But in case you still want me to get into why I like the tots, allow me to do so by describing the interaction I had with one of my neighbors on our front stoop the other night.

I said: "My friends think I like younger guys because I'm commitment-phobic and there's less of a chance of a serious relationship with a younger guy."

My neighbor said, "Whatevs! You just like younger guys because they're hotter."

My response? "Bingo!" (The fact that my neighbor is a full-fledged heterosexual male made this exchange all the more fun.)

What might require more dissection is this question: What's the appeal of the older woman to the younger male?

Over the years, the different babies I've dated have mentioned a number of things that make them dig older birds. Here are the important ones:

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Sep 25, 2010

Style Files: September '10 Women

'Cause I know you missed it, Style Files is back! And just in the nick of time - with Fall 2010 officially beginning, the hot new trends for Fall are burning up the streets and waiting to burn a hole in your wallet! Kidding! Money spent on smart style is money well spent! ;) Below, some of the hottest new looks for Fall that will carry you into the season in style!

1) Velvet clothing. Rich in texture and fit for royalty, velvet is everywhere this fall, from dresses to tops to skirts and more! This luxe fabric goes the distance, going with you straight from work to play. For the office, look for a top or jacket in this rich fabric; for nighttime, switch gears to something sexier in the form of a short drapey dress or low-cut top. Look for velvet pieces that have a thickness to the fabric, instead of flimsy ones that will end up looking cheap.



Crushed velvet on the runway at Jill Stuart Fall 2010.

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Sep 23, 2010

Would You Ever Give Your Significant Other "A Night Off" From Your Relationship?

Could you give your significant other a "night off" with someone else?

That's exactly what the writer of this article, Carmen Rodriguez, did with her ex (the relationship ended later for different reasons) and she claims it strengthened their bond. Could you picture yourself ever doing this in your relationship?  This is different from an open relationship in that it's a monogamous one overall, but one or both parties have come to the agreement that they'll give the other one "night off" to be (or sleep with) whomever they choose.  To read more, click here.

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Sep 20, 2010

Dating and Debt: 8 Red Flags You Need to Look Out For

By Martha White

When a professional meeting planner in Melville, N.Y. began dating the man who would eventually leave her $100,000 in debt, there were some clear warnings signs that he was having trouble with his finances. A part-time comedian, he used to joke about how he was only with her because of her secure job and good corporate benefits. "He used to make so many of these jokes," she recalls.

When they started getting serious, there were enough red flags about his financial health that she even postponed the wedding for a year until she felt that he'd become more fiscally responsible. When they finally got married, the honeymoon was short-lived. A mere six months after the wedding, he dissolved the family business and blew his portion of the proceeds on a brand-new motorcycle. "I was the one working 50-plus hours a week and paying all the bills, but he felt entitled concerning money that it was mutual property," she says.

Like many relationships in which money and debt become a sticking point, there are usually some early warning signs that go unnoticed or overlooked in the first, endorphin-filled rush of a new relationship. But experts, as well as people who've been in those troubled relationships, warn that if you ignore these red flags, you do so at your own peril. Read on for a list of the biggest fiscal red flags that you should keep watch for when entering into a new romantic relationship.

1. Has a "money-is-no-object" approach
Splurging on flowers or dinner once in a while is nice (and often typical in the early stages of a relationship), but you want to watch out for a guy or gal who never looks at the receipt before handing over his or her credit card. "A 30 year-old college graduate might have what seems like a good job, but do the expenses match the income?," asks Linda Kern, a divorce lawyer in Philadelphia who says deep-seated financial issues are one reason couples wind up in her office. "A salary nearing $100,000 may seem like a lot, but once the person makes a student loan payment, rent, car payment and insurance, there's not a lot left over for extravagance," she points out.

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Sep 17, 2010

Things Every Girl Should Have On A Date

Today I'll be discussing things that every girl should have on a first date.

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Sep 16, 2010

Q & A - My Boyfriend Checks Out Other Women

Q. Dear Alannah,

I've been dating a wonderful guy for the past 3 years.  We met shortly after I was divorced.  I was nervous that it would become a rebound, so we went VERY slow in the beginning, and it was great. I have 2 kids and live half an hour from him, so we don't get to see each other everyday.  When I first met him, I was smitten by all of the attention I was getting - 3 years later, he has definitely fallen into the comfortable stage.  Over the past year, he's started verbally acknowledging pretty women when he sees them with a "Damn, she's hot," or "Mmmm," like he's enjoying a moment with himself and her in his mind.  Now don't get me wrong, I understand that we're all attracted to the opposite sex, and just because you're in a relationship doesn't mean that you're blind.  I've had a few "Damn's," and "Mmm's," in my head, too, but that's where it stays, in my head, and it leaves as fast as it comes.

I've brought it up to him a few times, and he says he does it to get a rise out of me, but I've explained to him that I don't appreciate it.  He blows it off and it'll stop for a bit, but then it comes back every now and then.  So that's the background of the story...now onto what I actually need advice on.  My boyfriend is into theater, and he's going for a racy part which would land him interacting with women in some risque scenes - no nudity.  I honestly don't feel comfortable with it, but I've always supported him with his acting.  I feel like he has emotional relationships with the cast when he does shows, but now there will be sexual innuendos as well.  I'm not comfortable with it, but I don't know what or if I should do or say anything about it.  I need some advice - how would you feel?  What would you do?  Am I over-thinking this way too much and need to stop?

Sincerely,

Karen

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Sep 11, 2010

New Study Shows Young, Childless, and Single Women Earn More Than Men


Here's an interesting tidbit for you - according to a study done by James Chung of Reach Advisors, (who studied the Census Bureau's American Community Survey) childless, single women under 30 are earning more than their male counterparts in 147 out of the 150 biggest cities in the United States.  This means the tides are turning from the trend of average American working women earning only about 8o% of what average American working men earned.

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"How I Knew I Wanted to Marry Her"

According to the wedded guys we talked to, it's usually a small act or fleeting moment that makes them want to go the distance and pop the question.

By Bethany Heitman

She Could Pull Off a Surprise
"When Sarah and I first got together, I mentioned how I had always wanted a first edition of my favorite book, The Great Gatsby. Two years later, on our anniversary, we were out for a nice dinner, and she surprised me with a copy of the novel from when it was first published. She had found one, saved up money, and bought it. I was blown away. I honestly hadn't even remembered telling her about my wish. But she had listened, tucked away that information, and years later, tracked down a copy for me. A few months after that, I bought an amazing ring — with help from her sister — and proposed." — Steven, 31

She Never Guilt-Tripped Me
"I took a boys' trip with a bunch of friends from college. We went to Miami to hit the beach and go clubbing. Past girlfriends would have been worried about me being with my rowdy guy friends in another city without supervision, but this girl told me to have a great time and didn't get jealous at all.

"The first night there, I had a blast. But by the second day, I started missing my girlfriend really badly. Being with my sloppy guy friends made me think about how if my girlfriend were there, our hotel room would be much neater and cleaner. Later, we went to a Thai fusion restaurant, and all I could think about was how much she would have loved it. The fact that she gave me the freedom to go without guilt-tripping me — and then missing her so much — solidified my belief that she was the one I was supposed to be with for the rest of my life." — Eric, 26

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Sep 9, 2010

Q & A - Does He Want to Get Back Together?

Q. Dear Alannah,

My boyfriend and I broke up almost a few months ago, but I can honestly say that I am not completely over him yet, and I really miss him a lot.  I never intended on ending our relationship, but he insisted that it would be better if he and I just became friends (for our own personal reasons).  So, from then on I haven't really heard much from him at all.  A few weeks ago, though, he texted me.  It was pretty much just small talk to see what I've been up to, what we did over summer and what-not.  But then he asked me if I'm dating anyone...I didn't know what to think when he asked me that.  I just remember feeling really surprised that he would even ask me that question.  I told him no, and asked him if he was...and he said no as well. Our conversation ended shortly right after, which to me seemed really strange.  Even today, I'm still wondering why he would ask if I'm dating anyone.

Does that mean anything?  I don't want to automatically assume that he's still interested in me even though he's the one who wanted to be just friends.  I've talked to a couple of my close friends about it, and they told me not to make much of it, and that he probably just wanted to see how I was doing.  Maybe they are right, but a part of me is telling me that he didn't just text me to see how I was doing; but maybe something more than just that? I really don't know what to make of it, and I'm still really confused about the whole thing...I don't know if he was expecting maybe a call or text from me the next day...honestly, it just doesn't make sense.  Is it a good idea to try and be friends with him again by talking to him again? Or should I just keep my distance?  Please help.

Sincerely,

May

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Sep 1, 2010

Studies Show Key to Female Attractiveness is Waist-to-Hip Ratio

Is he checking out her ass, or her waist-to-hip ratio??

And all this time, who knew females were obsessing over the wrong thing??  According to studies done by researchers from New Zealand, female attractiveness is often determined not by our boobs, butt, legs, or even our face, but by our waist-to-hip ratio!  Who woulda thought?? 

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Aug 30, 2010

Q & A - Do Women Like Timid Guys?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I have a pretty temperate personality and have been told that I can be pretty timid.  I have heard that women love sensitive guys, and was wondering if this also applied to timid guys.  Do women like men who are timid?

Sincerely,

Shy Guy

A. Dear Shy Guy,

I am sorry to tell you this, but the majority of women do not like timid guys.  They like them as friends, but when it comes to romantic attraction, there is almost zero attraction (unless, of course, the man is Adonis-level hot, but even then, his timidness will decrease his level of attractiveness to most women).  Women like men who have a sensitive side or who can be sensitive, but he also has to have a side to him that shows he can "take charge" when necessary.  The average woman likes a man who can take charge, be decisive, and show assertiveness; in other words, show "manly" qualities.  If a man is timid, in order to find a girlfriend or a wife, he will have to either find a woman who loves taking charge and prefers a man who will take the backseat, a woman who is more timid than he is, or, change himself and become more masculine.  In other words, he will have to find a woman who is on either extreme, or change himself to become more masculine and not as timid. 

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Aug 26, 2010

Sexual Anorexia -- Sexual Addiction's Lesser Known Cousin

Sexual anorexics are the opposite of what Tiger Woods and Jesse James are, open manwhores.

So, researchers have apparently identified a new type of sexual dysfunction that runs in the opposite end of the spectrum from the likes of what Tiger Woods and Jesse James purportedly have (so-called "sexual addictions") and are saying that in addition to those people who are insanely addicted to sex, there also exist people who obssessively avoid sex.  Those who suffer from what has been termed "sexual anorexia" tend to be caught in an obsessive state in which the physical, mental and emotional task of avoiding sex dominates their lives.  To read more about this affliction, click here.

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Aug 23, 2010

How to Turn Her On

Today I'll be discussing for the guys, how to turn a woman on ;)

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Aug 20, 2010

The Five Stages of a Relationship

How can you tell if your relationship is moving forward? A Glamour dating blogger takes a crack at delineating five distinct stages of dating.

By John Ortved - My own relationship ups and downs, compounded by a breakup suffered by my partner in Single-ish crime, Erin, made me think about relationship statuses. Erin's guy hadn't called her for 3 days, and she took that as a sign something bad was coming. Before that his calls had dropped from several times a day to once every other day, and she saw that as defining. Was she right to be suspicious? What are the signs that our relationship is in a certain stage, and how can we categorize them? I've given it a shot:

Keep in mind that these are the stages of dating — anything past meeting the parents (moving in together, marriage, etc) and other past-boyfriend/girlfriend subject matter brings me out of my depth.

1. Puppy Lust
Your eyes meet. Numbers are exchanged. Dates are had. There are flowers. The time spent at first base is more like a seventh inning stretch. And then there are sleepovers. The cutest underwear is worn. Everything is new, and tasty, and repeated. Your friends know what he's like in bed. You have to put effort into spacing out your calls to each other. You're Charlie in the chocolate factory, a Greek soldier within the walls of Troy, Carrie in the Vogue fashion closet. You literally can't get enough.

2. Puppy Love
No more spacing calls. No more playing it cool. You're in serious like with each other. Sleepovers become more regular. You let each other see some personality quirks. You know his drink. He knows your favorite foods. He starts asking about your family and friends. Dinners and dates become less about impressing you and more about getting to know you. Your friends ask if it's going somewhere. There are fewer flowers but more practical gifts (the hand blender your kitchen was without; the DVD you know he'll love).

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Aug 16, 2010

Fact or Fiction: Eating Celery Can Increase A Man's Sexual Attraction With Women


Answer: Fact.

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Q & A - I'm In A Love Triangle

Q. Dear Alannah,

Okay, I don't know where to start.  I might jump around back and forth, and some information might be irrelevant but here goes...a few months ago, I was hanging out with my friend Sarah when she called up her friend Brandon to come hang out with us.  Brandon met us up, along with his then-girlfriend Tina.  We all hung out, had a great time, and I made 2 new friends.  Around 2 months later, Tina and Sarah invited me to go skydiving with them, and that's when Tina and I started talking more.  Her and Brandon had apparently broken up after dating for over a year.  After we went skydiving, Tina and I got closer, and after a week we started dating.

Rumors soon started going around that Tina and I were dating, and that Brandon didn't know we had started dating.  Somehow, Brandon got my number and we started talking.  Apparently, someone told him that I was a good listener and what-not.  So, he poured his heart out to me about how much he still loves Tina, and that she won't return any of his calls.  I didn't have the heart to tell him we were together.  I tried giving him advice as a friend, and to tell him to move on.  The more I told him, though, the more he would just keep going back to how much he still loved Tina.  And I started to feel bad because you know...I'm dating his ex and giving him advice to move on.  Each time he spoke just made me think about how in love he is with her, and that maybe Tina could still possibly have feelings for him, too.

I really like Tina a lot, and I don't want to give her up.  Just the other day, Brandon was finally able to get in contact with Tina.  I don't know what happened, but she seems different.  I don't know what Brandon said, but now she said that she's afraid of how fast our relationship is moving, and that things are moving too fast all of a sudden.  I'm pretty sure I'm taking things pretty slow.

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Aug 12, 2010

The Psychologist Who Says Women Should Let Men Cheat

"Women who cross their legs deserve to be cheated on."

That statement basically sums up the premise behind Aussie psychologist Holly Hill's new book, "Sugarbabe: The Controversial, Real Story of a Woman in Search of a Sugardaddy," which hits shelves this month. Among some of Hill's more fascinating theories: Couples who want to stay together should try out "negotiated infidelity," with a "sugarbabe" who acts as what we can best describe as a surrogate wife meets Hooters waitress. And who, by the way, is paid for ministering to your man.

All I've gotta say is, this lady is nuts!  This book, in my opinion, is nothing more than a hollow attempt to stir up controversy and make some money.  If a legitimate psychologist actually believes this, we should just go back to the Middle Ages now, or become full-blown polygamists, where each man has 10 wives and numerous concubines!  (An open relationship is one thing; condoning cheating because one person isn't "giving it up enough" is another!)

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Aug 9, 2010

Q & A - He Has a Crazy Family

Q. Dear Alannah,

I met this guy online a few weeks ago, and we've gone out about 4 times in the last 2 weeks and talk everyday.  We have a lot in common and really enjoy each other's company.  He's also made it pretty clear that he's interested in me, and I feel the same way.  So what's the problem here, right?

Well, he's been very open and has told me stories about his "unstable" family.  His mom has been married a few times, and may not be all that stable.  He described his brother as a real womanizer (married and divorced several times), and his sister has been in and out of rehab.  I know that everyone always puts their best foot forward at the beginning of a relationship, so I'm wondering if he shares some traits with his family members.  I'm looking for a long-term relationship, and don't want to be involved with someone who isn't available or emotionally/mentally stable to have a lasting relationship.

I'm torn about what to do.  I can continue to date him hoping that if he has issues they will surface, but how long might that take?  I don't want to pursue a relationship that may not have long-term potential, but not find out until many months later.  Any suggestions?  Thanks in advance for your input.

Sincerely,

Allison

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Aug 6, 2010

How to Tell If He's A Player

So you're dating someone new, and he's a total dreamboat...he's funny, charming, attractive, and says all the right things.  He's fun to be around, and you can see things getting serious.  However, before you start getting in too deep, check the signs below to make sure he's in the clear...if many of these signs apply to him, you could be dating a player.

1) He always has phone on silent or vibrate.  Every time you two are together, his phone is always on silent or vibrate.  This wouldn't be too strange - or suspicious - if not for the fact that you'll catch him texting/responding to messages in a suspicious manner (such as in his restroom or closet) and he makes a mad dash for his phone when he knows there's a call/text to make sure you don't see it first.  If this applies to your guy, he could be hiding something from you (such as calls or messages from other girls).

2) He prefers to chill at home, and never wants to take you anywhere.  This is more in the beginning stages of the relationship, where most time spent together/dates usually are outside of each other's homes.  If most of your time together is spent at his place (or yours) and is mostly spent "hooking up", you may not be his main squeeze.  (He may also just be viewing the relationship as more of a "booty-buddy" arrangement and less of an "actual" relationship.)

3) If he has accounts on many social networking sites, is very "secretive" about them, and does not add you as a friend or connection on any of them.  If you know he is active on Facebook, Myspace, or any other major social networking site, but purposely doesn't add you as a connection and/or makes up excuses for why he won't ("I use it for business purposes only," or "I have none of my friends added, it's just to look around."), then he could be hiding something. 

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Aug 4, 2010

Zodiac Hijack: Astrology Ended My Relationship

By Lavanya Sunkara - I was in southern India, the place where I spent my childhood. I had returned to meet my future in-laws. Dressed in traditional garb and with my mother next to me, I walked into their home and was greeted by my partner's sister and mother, with hearty smiles and huge hugs. The older woman, adorned in a crisp banarasi sari and with marigolds in her hair, brought in a plate of coconut sweets that she knew I liked. I looked at my future husband and I couldn't be happier, knowing that his family had wholly accepted me.

Then I woke up. Cool, spring New York air swept through my open window and my dog stirred next to me in her sleep. I awoke to a life in which my lover was gone, simply because my mother had given birth to me in the afternoon instead of the morning.

Like many modern singles, Suman* and I met online a year ago. We had both migrated to the States for higher education in the '90s. As we were both young professionals with a mix of East and West values, we quickly discovered the similarities between us. Having never dated a fellow Indian, I was both excited and hopeful about the prospect of being with someone who shared my language and customs and, more importantly, whose folks lived only blocks away from my kin. Months of getting to know one another through e-mails and marathon telephone conversations led to our finally meeting in person.

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Jul 31, 2010

Fact or Fiction: Relationship Insecurity Can Be Bad for Your Health


Answer: Fact.

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Jul 29, 2010

Q & A - I'm Afraid He'll Break My Heart Again

Q. Dear Alannah,

My boyfriend and I have been together for 3 months. We've known each other for about a year and went out last summer, but then eventually broke up when school started, because he was going into college then and he told me he'd be too busy for a girlfriend, and he also didn't have a car at the time. Well, we're doing great so far now, but I'm afraid that once school begins again, he'll break up with me again. 

The other thing also is that I love him and I'm too afraid to tell him.  He's never loved a girl in his life and I'm afraid that if I tell him, I'll scare him off.  People have told me, "Oh you guys have been together for only 3 months and you already love him?  You can't love a person that quickly, it takes more time."  But I've known him for a year and I really, really like him. I'm just so confused, I'm not sure what I should do.

I also talked to his mother a couple of days ago, though, and she told me that he's never been this serious with a girl, never had a relationship this long, and he's never brought a girl home.  I don't want to get my hopes up thinking he loves me back, though.  I've been hurt before so many times, I don't want to get hurt again.  What should I do?

Your advice would really help.

Sincerely,

Amanda

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Jul 27, 2010

Researchers Identify Why Breaking Up Is Hard to Do

AOL Health - Breaking up is definitely hard to do, and researchers now know why that is.

It seems that love is comparable to a drug addiction: It activates the parts of the brain associated with motivation, reward and addiction cravings, according to new research from Stony Brook University.

Researchers were able to show a connection between romantic rejection and a cocaine craving via brain images. And they helped to pinpoint that romantic love is more about being in a powerful, goal-oriented state based on the success of the relationship, rather than feeling a specific emotion, Arthur Aron, professor of social and health psychology at Stony Brook and one of the study's researchers, told AOL Health.

The research team, led by Helen Fisher, a research professor and member of the Center for Human Evolutionary Studies at Rutgers University, used functional magnetic resonance imaging to monitor the brain activity of 15 college-age individuals. The heterosexual men and women had recently been dumped by their significant others and reported that they were still in love with their former partner, spent hours thinking about that person and hoped that their partner would come back to them.

The authors of the study, which was published in the July issue of the Journal of Neurophysiology, showed participants a photograph of their former girlfriend or boyfriend and asked them to complete a math exercise. Then they showed the volunteers a picture of a familiar "neutral" individual.

The photos of participants' past partners stimulated several key areas of the brain, including:

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Jul 24, 2010

Summer Date Ideas That Cost Next to Nothing

With summer in full swing, there are a plethora of cheap date ideas that abound that will cost you next to nothing. From chilling outdoors to escaping the heat inside, summer is the perfect time of year to take advantage of the relaxed mood and hot temperatures that make nighttime dates oh-so-steamy! Below, some summer date ideas that will cost you next to nothing!

1) Swimming. What better way to get your date half-naked on the first few dates than by going swimming? Not only is it free and a great way to beat the heat, it also allows you to burn some calories while you're at it, and have fun. Bring along a cooler with refreshments and then hit the local watering hole to cool down with your date!

2) Happy hour. Why go out late at night to get drinks when prices are at their highest? Grab drinks during happy hour with your date, and enjoy the same great cocktails for half the price! Save any leftover cash for dinner or a movie later, and you'll have the complete "going out" experience for much less money!

3) Grilling/barbecue. This is something guys love to do that can also help save you cash if you took advantage of it. Instead of heading over to the local ultra-pricey, extra-stuffy steakhouse in your city, why not grill or barbecue instead? Those skilled at cooking can show off your culinary chops by inviting your date over to your place for some surf and turf - made your way - without leaving a significant dent in your wallet. Or, make it a group affair and invite several friends over for a summer barbecue - whatever your choice, cooking at home easily saves you more than half of what you'd spend on the same food at a luxe restaurant.

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Jul 20, 2010

Q & A - My Boyfriend Moved in With a Female Roommate

Q. Dear Alannah,

My boyfriend of 4 years recently moved in with his friend Randy and his sister Anna.  Randy is out of town until the end of the month, so right now it's just my boyfriend and Anna living there.  I am very uneasy with him living there with a girl.  About a year ago, my boyfriend cheated on me, hid that he was cheating until I found the intimate text messages, and then we broke up.  We ended up gettting back together about 4 months later.

Given our background, you can see why I am so threatened with my boyfriend living there.  He and Anna also have a bit of history; when he was a freshman in high school, they made out at a party.  Apparently it was nothing, but now he seems to be trying to get close to her.

He is overly-friendly with her, and it makes me uncomfortable.  Just like on Sunday, when I was at work; he took Anna out to lunch and paid for her, as well.  I was really upset when I found out.  Then I come to his house, and he is only wearing a towel when talking to her.  They barely even acknowledged me walking in there.  At that point, I had had it, and just couldn't handle this extreme jealousy I felt.  I told him I couldn't be with him anymore, and that him living with a girl was just too much for me; he flipped out.  Started yelling at me like a 13 year old and wouldn't stop - he told me I was fake and crazy.  He kept telling me that he isn't gonna "f-ck" Anna, and that he hasn't "cheated on me YET."  That's wonderful...

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Jul 16, 2010

Mistakes Guys Make When Pursuing a Woman

When first pursuing a woman, many guys have only one focus, and one focus only: get her interested, and agree to go on a date. (Some, of course, may be more focused on other aspects of dating - namely, gettin' laid! - than they are on the dating itself, but that's another topic for a different day!) Many guys at the beginning are so focused on the things that they can do to impress a woman that they aren't aware of some mistakes they may be making that can easily spell doom for a potential courtship. Below, some common mistakes many guys make when pursuing a woman, and why you should avoid them!

1) Entrapment. This is a sneaky and somewhat manipulative move that some guys sometimes do (whether consciously or unconsciously) in order to get with a girl, and it's what - in it's worst form - I call "entrapment". It's when a guy does nice things for a girl so that he can hold it over her later so that she'll "owe" him, and therefore feel obligated to spend time with him and/or go on a date with him.

Now, I'm not saying that all guys who do nice things for a girl are trying to entrap her, mind you; some actually are just generous and sweet, and want to do nice things for another person; some may be doing things just hoping that the girl will realize he'd do anything for her because he has genuine feelings for her; and then, the last group are the ones I'm describing here.

Women can see right through this, and the majority of the time, it never works. In fact, there's usually only one of two things that can happen when a guy does this, and neither one of them are favorable; a woman will see this for what it is, and will either: a) be turned off and stop seeing him, or b) go along with it and try to get as much as she can from him while she can, and then leave him in the dust.

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Jul 12, 2010

Q & A - Should I Give Him A Second Chance?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I have a friend named Johnny who I've been friends with since junior high school.  We met in History class.  Johnny was a nice, shy guy.  We weren't best friends, but were still pretty close.  He didn't talk to me much during the first month we were in the class, but as the semester went on, he started talking to me, constantly.  Towards the end of the school year, as high school was approaching, his friends suddenly started randomly coming up to me and asking me what I thought of him.  I ignored them, of course.  What was I supposed to do?  I was in junior high, and relationships were the last thing on my mind.

Then we entered high school, and Johnny was in one of my classes again.  During our freshmen year, I got to know him more, and we'd talk whenever we could.  At the end of the school year, he gave me some of his drawings of roses and such.  I noticed he was acting kind of weird around me and so were his friends - they were always whispering when I came up to talk to him.  Then, during our summer break, we would meet at school, because I had club meetings and he had soccer practice.  We would talk until our rides came.  One day, when my parents came to pick me up, we said our "Goodbyes" and "See you later's", and then unexpectedly, Johnny yelled out, "I love you!"  I was shocked.  I didn't know what to say back, so I just smiled and waved.  He continued with the "I love you's" for the rest of the summer. 

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Jul 8, 2010

Fact or Fiction: If You're A Great Lover, You Can Please Anyone


Answer: Fiction.

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Jul 6, 2010

Food for Thought: What's Your Type?

When I was younger, I had two distinct "types" of guys that I was attracted to...the first was the kind many girls fall for, the one who's ultimately a heartbreaker. This kind of guy was the charmer, the smoothtalker, all the ladies loved him, and he also loved himself. I'm sure you all know of someone like this. Needless to say, I learned (after many, many stumbles and falls) that this type of guy isn't the guy who has long-term potential...he's fleeting, and is always after the next new thing on the horizon, or only wants what he can't have.

The other type of guy, in some ways, is even more dangerous than the first...he will consume your time and give you hope. He'll leave you drifting, waiting for him for ages until he's ready to take action, on anything. He's not a bad guy, but waiting for him could suck years out of your life if you allowed it. This type of guy, for me, was the poetic, artistic type...sensitive, brooding, down-to-earth. He was deep and layered, but often with so many hang-ups and issues that things never got anywhere...it was always at a standstill. Big dreams and grand hopes, but no action or follow-through.

It was then that I realized that having a "type" puts you in a box, it cages you in. It makes you blind to all the other possible matches for you that you've been missing out on. It makes you write someone off if they don't fit a certain predetermined "mold" that you have, making you miss out on so many wonderful possibilities that could have happened if you had only decided to be a bit more open about your dating choices.

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Jul 3, 2010

Q & A - I Like A Girl Who's Not Legal Yet

Q. Dear Alannah,

I have somewhat of a dating dilemma and wanted to see if you could help.  I'm a 25 year old guy, and am interested in this girl who's not legal yet.  She's 17, will turn 18 by the end of the year, and the interest is mutual.  I'm not some perv who preys on underage girls -- we have mutual friends (she's the younger sister of a friend of my friend) and happened to hang out together in a group setting a few times.  I didn't initiate the flirtation with her; she did, and made it pretty clear that she is interested in me.  She doesn't act like most girls her age, is very mature, and we have a great time talking to each other.  She has mentioned that we should hang out on a few occasions.

I don't know what I should do, because I am interested, but there's the obvious problem of her age.  Should I go ahead and ask her out, since it is a mutual thing?  What is really the big deal if she's going to turn 18 by the end of the year anyways, right?

Sincerely,

Keiran

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Jun 30, 2010

Why Women Love Twilight


"Twilight" has taken the world by storm. Since the release of the first movie, "Twilight", in November 2008, the legions of fans lining up to see the release of each new and upcoming movie continues to grow, and stories of fan obsession and ardor over the movies' stars - most notably Robert Pattinson or "Edward" and Kristen Stewart or "Bella" - and fervent fascination with their love lives have reached fever pitch. For a movie based on a teen book series about vampire love, the series now has a fanbase that claims not only teens, but also women in their 30's, 40's, and 50's (and beyond!). Not since the union of Brad and Angelina has the world seen such rabid fan devotion as has been seen with the "Twilight" series! (With fans being known both affectionately and not-so-affectionately as "Twihards".)

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Articles You Should Check Out

Great article on why taken guys seem sexier (the keyword here is seem!).

Why Taken Guys Seem Sexier

Fellas, take note! Ladies, where do you fall??

6 Types of Women Every Man Should Date

Planning a great 4th of July weekend with your beau? Some sexy and fun date ideas that won't break the bank!

4th of July Date Ideas (That Won’t Break the Bank)

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Jun 26, 2010

Q & A - To Stay or Not to Stay?

Q. Dear Alannah,

So, I've been dating my boyfriend for about two and a half years, and I must say he's been the most generous and caring guy I have ever met.  When he and I first got together, I remember always thinking about how lucky I am to be with a person who is so strikingly different from other guys.  We rarely fought, and when we did, it was usually about small annoyances we had with each other and the fight would quickly dissolve.  He also pays the majority of our expenses; when we go out to eat, he is usually the one that pays for both of our meals while I pay for the tip.  He even pays for my movie ticket, entry to special events, stuff like that.  When I ask him if he's okay with that, he just smiles and says that he's fine with paying for us because he understands that I don't have a job (though I've been scouring all over the place for one with no luck).

Lately, though, things have changed.  He's not as... nice anymore, for lack of a better word.  I've thought about it and my reason for him having changed is that it's been over two and a half years, he's probably getting fed up with always having to "care" for me and "feed" me.  When I think of it that way, I totally understand.  If I were in his situation, I would be irritated, too.

But it's not just him that's changed.  I admit that I've changed as well.  For the past few months, I've been asking myself if I see myself marrying my boyfriend and spending the rest of my life with him.  And when I look at my boyfriend, I sometimes think to myself that although he's one of the nicest and most generous guys I know, he's probably not the best for me.  Quite simply, I often feel like he's just not my type.

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Jun 25, 2010

Fact or Fiction: Do Men Really Think About Sex Every 7 Seconds?


Answer: Fiction.

Although many men do have high sex drives, the majority are not so driven by their libidos that they can't focus on a single task without sexual thoughts or fantasies entering their minds.  Studies show that about 54 percent of men think about sex every day or several times a day, 43 percent a few times a week or a few times a month, and about 4 percent less than once a month. 

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Jun 23, 2010

Embarrassing First Date Scenarios to Avoid

Many people have first date horror stories that could fill the pages of a book...from blind dates gone wrong to strange types who could have just stepped out of a VH1 reality show, there are some first date stories you'd rather just forget.  Of course, bad date scenarios can go both ways, and no one wants to be on the other end of someone else's bad date story! 

Below, some embarrassing first date scenarios that could happen to anyone, and why you should avoid them!

1) Getting trashed on a first date. A major no-no!  This gives off several bad impressions, the first one being:

a) You can't have fun unless you're throwed.  What this also tells the other person is that you must be boring when you are sober, and need alcohol to become a more "fun" person (think "Fun Bobby" from Friends!).  Even if you're drinking in order to loosen up the first date jitters, getting drunk on a first date can only lead to disaster. 

b) "I can only tolerate you because I'm trashed," or, "You are extremely boring, therefore I must get drunk." Whether or not either of those statements is true, it's only respectful to the other person to stay sober during your date.  No matter how boring your date may be, you should not punish them for it by making them take care of you drunk on your first - and probably only - date together. 

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Jun 17, 2010

Win a Chance for Free One-on-One Dating Coaching!

Ready for some summer lovin'?  Want to change your love life?  Win a chance to work with me directly to change your dating life forever!


One lucky winner will spend the next few weeks working one-on-one with yours truly to improve their dating skills and change their dating life forever!  My dating coaching program is tailored to your specific needs and personality, and lasts between 2 to 3 months (depending on specific needs and individual progress).  It includes:

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Jun 15, 2010

How to Get Your Guy to Do (Almost) Anything

Today I'll be discussing for the ladies, how to get your guy to do (almost) anything!

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Jun 12, 2010

Q & A - Should I Wait?

A. Dear Alannah,

About a year ago, I broke things off with my ex-boyfriend, because he was constantly hurting me and I couldn't do it anymore.  I still think about him from time to time, though not as much when I'm dating someone.  Fast forward to today...I've moved to a bigger city and have dated a few guys since I moved.  None of them have really worked out, though, and each time they don't work out, I think about my ex again and get sad.

I recently started seeing this guy.  He was just dumped by his girlfriend (I know, red flag), but he started flirting with me, and we've started hanging out.  I know he's not over his ex yet, and he's even said that he isn't.  I've decided that I like him, though, and think that it's worth pursuing something with him when he's ready.  My question is, what do I do until then?  I know I should keep my options open, but there aren't any other prospects right now.  He keeps sending me mixed signals and goes through periods where he calls/texts a lot.  Then other times, I don't hear from him for awhile.  He says things like, "I'm taking it slow," and then will say, "We need to find you a man."

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Jun 9, 2010

Stretch Your Style Spending

In this economy, being on top of fashion trends can sometimes seem more like a privilege than a right.  However, for those who are thrifty yet don't want to sacrifice style, there are several ways in which to stay stylish without breaking the bank.  Below, some tips on how to stretch your style spending!

1) Colors and patterns.  Buying clothes and accessories in the latest colors is the easiest and cheapest way to update your wardrobe.  For maximum mileage, get tees, ties, tops, scarves, etc. in the latest colors and patterns for the season. 

Color allows you to easily update your wardrobe without spending too much, and patterns add an infusion of style and personality to any outfit!

2) Accessories.  This is a cheap way to easily update your look - a new scarf, a watch, a brooch, earrings, a belt, or a wallet can easily add a stylish punch to your look.  When wearing accessories, don't go overboard; for instance, one statement piece of jewelry paired with another more understated piece (such as, a statement necklace with simple earrings, or no earrings at all)  is good enough.  Going overboard and piling on too many accessories can spell "overkill" for an otherwise hot look!

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Jun 5, 2010

Q & A - Is Our Relationship Really Over?

Q. Dear Alannah,

So, I was dating this guy for about a year and a half; it was a pretty serious relationship. We would fight all of the time, though, because he was extremely jealous and always wanted to have his way. His jealousy was to the point where he would accuse me of wanting to get with his friends, my coworkers, or basically, any guy who would get near me. I'm a friendly person, but neither me nor my friends would say I'm particularly flirty, and I don't have a complicated dating history or reputation of being a player.

Regardless of these issues, we did not break up and were trying to make it work, until a few months ago. There was a guy at school who I had become friends with, and who I had started hanging out with more.  I had no romantic feelings towards him, and saw him purely as a friend. He'd be there to listen to my problems when my boyfriend was acting up and giving me stress, and I do admit, it was nice having someone around who understood me and showed support.  Later on though, he confessed that he had feelings for me, and started pushing for me to become his girlfriend, even after I had told him that I didn't see him in a romantic light.  He also started trying to become close to me physically, at which point I drew the line and backed off from our friendship.

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Jun 3, 2010

Food for Thought: Are Open Relationships A Step Forward, or Backward?

Open relationships.  That taboo relationship topic, in a world where everything else seems fair game.  From the dissecting and oversharing of personal relationship details, to the open discussion of intimate sexual information, much of what was once considered extremely private information between two people is now discussed easily over coffee, or online for all the world to see. 

And yet, when it comes to the topic of open relationships, most speak in hushed or dismissive tones that run contrary to the current attitude of openness.  Is this mostly due to a lack of understanding, lack of experience, disinterest, or even, disdain, for such arrangements?  The majority of people could never imagine being "okay" with their significant other dating someone else - I am one of those people.  However, I have no bias against open relationships, or those who choose to be in one - definitely, to each their own.

Those who are against the idea, though, might argue, "What's the point of being in a relationship if you're going to go out there and date and sleep with other people?  Why not just stay single in the first place and avoid any problems??"  On the other hand, those for the idea could argue back that just because two people are in a relationship doesn't mean that they have to be "bound" to one another, and, if it's agreed that they can casually see others and both agree to the terms, who's business is it but their own?  After all, isn't it better to have such an arrangement than to have a "monogamous" relationship where one or both people are cheating?

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Jun 1, 2010

Does Size Matter?

Today, I'll be answering that age-old question...does size matter?

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May 28, 2010

Q & A - She Brought Her Friend With Her

Q. Dear Alannah,

I recently asked this girl out to go to lunch with me.  During what I thought would be our date, she brought her friend with her.  I talked to both of them and made them both laugh, and gave about 80% of my attention to my date, and 20% of my attention to her friend. 

Now I'm wondering, since she brought her friend along, does this mean she isn't interested?  Should I go ahead and ask her out for a second date, or not?  Also, if she is interested, why would she bring her friend along in the first place?  What should I do?

Sincerely,

Aaron

A. Dear Aaron,

Your date bringing her friend along doesn't necessarily mean that she isn't interested; there can be a number of reasons why she asked her friend to come along, but the 3 top possibilities are:

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May 25, 2010

A Little More About the Author

Sorry for the delay in postings lately everyone!  Am trying to get used to this whole Vlog thing, and once I do, new videos will be up soon! :)  In the meantime, I wanted to tell you a little bit more about myself, since I haven't really done that much on here.

1) Am a perfectionist to the core - I drive myself nuts with it.  I'll notice things that no one else will notice, but mostly when it comes to my own work...is part of the reason it's taking awhile for those new Vlogs!

2) I love RPG games - Final Fantasy is the best!

3) I love dogs.  Cats are cute, but they scare me...you never know if one'll come up and rub against your leg, or, try to scratch your eyes out!!

4) I felt like an old soul growing up, but now feel like I'm aging backwards in that I feel more carefree as the years go by...go figure!

5) Chocolate can solve (almost) all of life's problems.

6) "There's no such thing as a free lunch." I couldn't agree more!

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May 21, 2010

Q & A - Should I Date Someone Who'll Be a Rebound?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I broke up with my ex-girlfriend recently, and am currently going through the motions of the break-up.  The worst part of it is kind of over, but I still feel pretty lonely.  I miss having someone there who I can share things and spend time with, as well as also have my unsatisfied, "manly" needs.

There's this girl who seems pretty interested in me; I only see her as a friend, though.  I sometimes want to date her just for the sake of having someone.  I don't have feelings for her, though, and I know it'd ruin the friendship afterwards.  It'd be a quick fix for the pain and loneliness, but kind of unethical.  So I've been holding myself back, and trying to get through it alone.

My question was, should I just go ahead and go for it anyway, and could rebound relationships end well?

Sincerely,

Andy

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May 20, 2010

Truth or Dare: Confess Your Crush


Truth:

Look up an old crush on Facebook and let them know about the huge crush you used to have on them (if you're single, of course!).

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May 17, 2010

How to Get Over a Break-Up

So you and your boyfriend or girlfriend just broke up, and you're feeling the pain of the break-up...everyone says it'll take time to heal, and you've probably been through it before, but what can you do in the meantime to help ease the process?  Below, some tips that'll help make the recovery process after a break-up easier and (somewhat) more bearable as you heal and move on.

1) Get rid of their stuff.  Return clothes, things they left at your place, things of value they may want back, and anything else you'd feel bad about tossing.  This doesn't have to include gifts they gave you (it's usually understood that gifts given to one another during a relationship are kept after a break-up, unless, of course, your ex is really petty and has asked for them back).

Depending on how the relationship ended, take things you acquired during and from the relationship - such as pictures, gifts, mementos, anything that reminds you of them - and either get rid of them, or, store them in a spot out of plain sight so you won't randomly come across them.

2) Stop listening to songs that remind you of them.  This is a subtle - yet in my opinion, important - thing on a person's list of must-do things in order to get over a break-up.  "It's just a song," you might say.  "What harm can it do to listen to something that reminds you of the good times?"  Well, if you're sitting there listening to your and your ex's song day in and day out after your break up, or the song that reminds you of your first date (or your first kiss, etc.), how are you going to move on from the relationship and move forward with your life? 

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May 14, 2010

Q & A - For Business or Pleasure?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I have a male house mate that has been living with me for eight months now.  When my roommate first moved in, I was going on casual dates with guys from time to time.  None of them were serious or anything, but he would see me get dressed up, the doorbell would ring, and off I would go.  Initially, I wanted our living situation to be professional (tenant/landlord) with no fraternization.  About four to five months ago, we started showing interest in each other.  I believe there was an initial unspoken attraction when we first met, but I was determined not to cross the boundaries of tenant/landlord relations.  For some reason or another, I started spending more time at home.  I started getting know my roommate on a personal level.  We started watching movies, cooking, cleaning, going out to restaurants, and bars together.  I warned him that I could see myself getting attached to him if we were ever to become intimate with each other, and that we probably shouldn’t go in that direction.  Despite my warning to him, one thing led to another and we ended up sleeping together.  We have been sleeping together for about 4 or 5 months now.  I have become extremely fond of him, I even think I feel love for him!  About a month or so after we first started messing around, I asked him if he wanted to be my man, he said that he, "really liked me, but that he didn’t want a relationship right now and not to rush into things, and to just to go with the flow!”

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May 13, 2010

Truth or Dare: Try a New Look


Dare:

Try a crazy new look when you go out this weekend.  (Or, just try a look you normally wouldn't don.)

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May 10, 2010

Q & A - Classmate Crushin'

Q. Dear Alannah,

There's a girl in one of my classes that I'm interested in getting to know.  She's pretty cute, and seems pretty interesting.  She usually sits in the front row - not many people usually sit there, so it's pretty normal for me to sit next to her during class.  The lecture is kind of a large class (around 150 people).

What should I do in order to get to know her better?  What can I talk to her about?  How can I approach and strike up a conversation with her?  We don't necessarily need to start dating; we could also just be friends.  Should I strike up a conversation with her spontaneously, so that it won't seem strange?  What's the best thing to do here?

Sincerely,

Devin

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May 8, 2010

Truth or Dare: Approach Someone


Dare:

For the single guys and gals, approach someone you find hot today and let them know you find them attractive. 

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May 5, 2010

Q & A - Work Crush

Q. Dear Alannah,

I've been in a relationship for 4 years, and my boyfriend is amazing.  We've been very happy, but recently a situation has come up which makes me feel pretty much like garbage for being a part of it.  You see, there's this guy at work that I flirt with all the time, and he flirts with me also.  We hung out outside of work one night, and I could tell that the likes me.  Since then, I can't stop thinking about him.  I don't know what it is, whether it's because I have actual feelings for him, or just because it's new and exciting.  Anyways, recently, I saw that he updated his status on Facebook to "In a Relationship" and I felt a pit in my stomach.  I want to stop feeling this way; it's ridiculous!  What should I do??

Sincerely,

Kara

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May 3, 2010

How to Date Like a Bad Boy (Without Being One)

Welcome to my first ever vlog!!  Enjoy! ;)

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Apr 29, 2010

Q & A - Is She Interested, or Not?

Q. Dear Alannah,

I wanted to know if it was common for a girl to talk to a guy every day on the phone if she's not interested in him (as anything more than just a friend).  There's this girl I'm interested in who I've been hanging out with, and we talk on the phone every night for at least half an hour; we talk about anything and everything.  Sometimes she'll call me, and other times I'll call her.  So I was wondering, would a girl call a guy every day if she only saw him as just a friend and nothing more?

Sincerely,

Brandon

A. Dear Brandon,

Yes, it is possible for a girl to talk to a guy on the phone every day when she sees him as just a friend.  If you want to get out of potential Friend Zone territory with her, this is what you'll need to do:

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