Sad Mistakes Singles Make # 1:
Being too Picky in Dating
By Frank Kermit
Being Too Picky Gets Too Sticky
It saddens me greatly when singles self sabotage by being too picky and let their own shallowness and insecurities get in the way. I find this happens even when someone else makes it clear that there is a mutual interest. There are single people, who will resist taking action even when presented with their chance to actually have a date with someone who is interested in him or her, as much as he or she is interested back.
Recent examples of this are the results from the very first Speed Dating Montreal event I hosted. Everyone comes in with an open mind...at least those who make it past the door. I was greeted by the number of people who came right up to the door, only to get cold feet and panic, and rush out again, after nothing more than a quick glimpse of the amount of other attendees.
There were those that went through the registration process and left before the event actually began including excuses such as "not enough people", and "not enough in my age range". One person who left early sat in his car just outside the event telling late comers he was leaving as there were not enough people in there, perhaps attempting to discourage more adventurous singles from doing what he was too nervous to do? Not sure.
However, the wonderful irony of this situation? Within 12 minutes of all those people leaving including the car-town crier who finally sped off, about 10 more people came in and helped to balance out the numbers of attendees. And once the event was over, I noted a couple of people saying they would have liked to choose a particular person for a match up, but were reluctant to do so, for a reason they could not articulate.
Finally, when the matches were made, and I contacted the participants, there were at least two that hemmed-and-hawed saying they could not actually go on a date with that person (despite the fact they both agreed to be matched up the night before and even wrote down their interest to confirm it) because they just worried that it would not work out anyways.
People get in their own way for one reason. People have a fear of intimacy.
When someone is so extremely picky that they get into very solitary situations there is a deeper issue at work.
A fear of intimacy is a very sticky substance to douse ones-self in. Once you start along this slippery slope of fear-glue it just gets harder and harder to crack the outer shell that crusts over you, like a cocoon of solitude, that forbids any meaningful connections to penetrate in.
There is no honor is being too picky when you are single and lonely. There is no sense in rejecting people interested in dating you because you simply "are not into them". If every person that you are so "into", is not "into" you, that is not you having high standards. That is you finally having an acceptable excuse not to put yourself out on the dating market. It is easier to blame everyone else for not being good enough, when you know the truth is that you just want to reject him or her, before they reject you first.
No one likes being rejected. No one likes being hurt. However, the joys associated with being connected with others comes with risks, and if you are not open to the hurt that comes with taking risks, you will also never get to immerse yourself in the passion of a fruitful loving relationship.
So before you disqualify someone for being too old, too young, too fat, too thin, too tall, too short, too poor, (funny that no one has ever told me that they are rejecting someone for being too rich) or for any other reason that you can think up on the spot, consider this reality check: If you were already a super-duper prize, then you would not single and lonely. Sorry for the harsh truth, but reality will always slap you when you delude yourself long enough. Better you hear it from me than have life slap you first.
Then there are those people that do reverse-pickiness. They self-reject so that they do not have to even try to date people. This is where a person will tarnish their own value and claim that no one would want to date them (even if someone has made the opposite intention clear). Instead of saying that the person he likes is too short, he claims she's too tall. Instead of saying that the person she likes is too young, she claims she is too old.
We all have standards. That is OK. But when your standards strand you alone, then your standards, are not standards...they are your enabling beliefs that keep you alone.
There is a difference between being single and being alone. Being single is a relationship status, whereas being alone is usually rooted in fear. Which do you want to be? It is up to you to set the example in your life. If you have something you believe works against you in relationships that you cannot nor will not change, then be the educator about how someone needs to feel comfortable with someone like you.
The best way to have others accept you, for both your good points and your faults, is to lead by example and accept yourself.
So Stop Blaming hook up culture, new technologies, the people who rejected you, the people you CHOSE to date, and society. You are single because of YOU. Wake up and become a commitment-worthy dating candidate if you want a serious commitment. ACT like a person that is worth a serious commitment. Just like any other goal in life, it is about YOU. Sign up for Coaching Now.
Beware Your Friends!
They May Not Want You To Be Loved
By Frank Kermit
Mistakes Singles Make # 6... Seeking the approval of friends that influences your love life choices.
Love may come and go, but a friendship can last a lifetime...or so they say. I used to believe it myself until a handful of experiences of having some of my own "friends" ruin my first few serious relationships. I also experienced being on the other side of it, when my partner's friends got more of a say our relationship than they should have. Those were very unpleasant experiences, but in retrospect, I am grateful they happened, as they taught me a very important life lesson.
I learned very early on in my life that a friend's interest in you being happy in your love life depends on if your happiness interferes with their lives. If you having a relationship with someone new in your life will get in the way of the expectations your friends place on you, then beware. Your friends could become the saboteurs at the crossroads of your journey in life.
Sometimes the source of your friend-turned-enemy is simple jealousy. Why should you be happy when they are not as happy, even if your friend already has a partner? I find these stories much more common with my women clients. Some women simply cannot stand to see their girl friends find someone to be special to them. A relationship steals a friend's attention off her (just EVIL!). In fact, I know of a number of older women who struggle to have her friends introduce her to potential mates because many of her friends (usually coupled up and started families) mention (in a joking manner of course) that the couple would lose a great babysitter. Unfortunately, it turns out not to be that much of a joke.
Sometimes the source of your friend-turned-enemy can be the fact that a new loving relationship interferes with a certain lifestyle of good times that friends have become accustom to having together. This is more common among the men I coach, as guys get resentful when a new relationship costs them a wingman
As I teach it, a real friend helps you get what you want. If you want sex, a friend does not stand in your way. If you want to date someone, a friend does not encourage you against it. If you want to take your relationship to the next level, a friend gives your new partner a chance and gets to know him or her. And if you get very serious with someone that your friend does not necessarily think is right for you (for ANY reason), a real friend sticks by your decision and accepts you despite not approving of your partner choice. Anything else (barring a seriously dysfunctional relationship involving abusive that your friend wants you to stay aware from) is not a sign of a real friendship, but an indication that it was a relation of convenience. Just because someone is your friend, does not mean they will be your ally in love.
That is at the heart of when you have to choose between your friends and your partner. Your happiness must never be based on your friend's approval. You are the one that must accept the consequences of your choices. Whether those consequences are your life being ruined for choosing the wrong person OR living a (for lack of a better term) happily-ever-after, those are your consequences to deal with, not your friends consequences. If you want to get to know someone, but are reluctant to give that person a chance because you are afraid that your friends will not approve (for example, if your friends would accuse you of lowering your standards because the person you happen to like is someone they would consider unattractive, then you deserve all the misery a lonely future can have installed for you.
Sorry, but whether you do what you want, or you do what your friends want...the consequences of your choices are always the same...they are always YOURS. Until you grow up and come to terms with the fact that the only approval you really need to build the love life you want is your own, you will never get to the higher levels of awareness to be able to have the intimate connections you have heard so much about.
Dating In Social Circles
By Frank Kermit
Dating can be tricky. Does the other person like you the way you think he or she might? Do you really like that person enough to get more serious, or do you want to keep it more casual as you get to know them more, all the while risking that if you are not serious enough, that person might end up getting serious with someone else in the meantime? Will that person get along with my friends and my existing social circles? Will I get along with that person’s friends and social circles? Navigating these relationship management questions is part of the adventure of dating.
Sometimes, these concerns might be too overwhelming for some people, such that, they would prefer to date people that are already part of their existing friend groups and social circles. Intellectually, this would seem easier as the person you are dating is already accustom to the people you like to hang out with, and you already know everyone seemingly gets along. However, when you add romantic dating into the equation of maintaining social circles, it might be worse for you, that person and the entire social circle.
When dating someone in your existing social circle of friends, it is usually best to keep your dating between you and the person you are dating and not share details of your intimate meet ups with others in the group. This is especially necessary when you are still only at the beginning stages of dating. When initially dating someone, although it is expected that you both have an initial interest in each other, or at least are open to the possibility that something more could develop, it is also just as likely at this stage, that you might end up going on only a handful of dates and decide it is not meant to be.
Depending on where your personal boundaries are with sex and dating, this also may mean that the two of you might even have had sex by the time you decide to end the romantic connection, and just resume a friendship within the social circle. Some people can manage this process very well. Others may have a harder time being friends with someone they have already slept with, that remains in the social circle, especially if that person was the one that wanted to continue dating.
What many people do not factor in is that members of the social circle may have their own issues and problems with the people who decide to try and make a go of a romantic relationship. The reasons are various. It could stem from jealousy as there may have been someone in the social circle that had an interest in dating one of the couple, and now feels uneasy with the fact that the target of his or her affection chose someone else (a friend) to date first.
Another issue is that there might be someone in the social circle that simply does not have the maturity to handle the idea that two of their friends got together, dated, maybe even had sex, and ended it and that such an involvement is not fodder to be regularly brought up, made fun of, or a challenge to address.
By challenge I mean that sometimes, friends within a social circle, whom usually have the best of intentions, will make a mission of getting the former casual couple back together, even if it is against that couple’s wishes. Herein is where the real issues are when dating someone openly at the beginning stages of relationship, within a social circle. There will be people within that same social circle that will feel an obligation to involve themselves in the couple’s personal affairs. This kind of interference is rarely a good way for any couple trying to start the beginning of a potential relationship.
If you are thinking of dating someone that is already entrenched in your social circle, then strongly consider keeping the details about your romantic interests to yourself. Do not share your interest with others in the same social circle. If you do manage to get the person you are interested in on a date, do not share those details with the other members of your social circle. When you see the person you are starting to date at a social circle event, do not act like you are dating. Act friendly, but do not hold hands, cuddle, kiss or openly talk about the dates you have had. It may even be necessary to arrive and leave the events separately to avoid suspicion. If you behave correctly, no one in the social circle should have any inclining that the two of you are dating in any capacity, including having seen each other naked. Keep in mind this is a little more difficult than people think.
When couples get comfortable with each other, it is only instinctual to let that comfort show in very subtle ways (like standing extra close to each other in public, whereas most people still maintain a certain private bubble even between friends. Part of keeping the initial dating phase quiet is fighting this instinct.
If after dating a few times, one or both of the people in the couple decide to stop the romantic nature of their involvement, and wish to remain friends with the social circle intact, it will be easier to stay a part of the social circle. Break ups can split a social circle as members of the circle may start to take sides and get too involved in the private troubles that broke the couple up. Not being too public about the attempt at a more serious relationship beyond friendship is what helps keep a social circle together.
On the other hand, if after dating a few times the couple decides they like each other enough to get more serious, then the couple may go public with their relationship and thus inform the social circle of the new relationship status.
One of the benefits of this maneuver is that the couple in the relationship will have already formed a foundation for their relationship, such that when members of the social circle try to exhort any influence (again, not necessarily out of malice, but possibly out of good intentions), the influence may end up halted by what the couple has already established as part of their relationship boundaries.
One of the consequences is that some members of the social circle might have a bruised ego or hurt feelings that they were not included in the “big secret”. If this is the case, ignore it. Those are the same people who lack maturity that would have made dating openly in a social circle a nightmare.
Political Elections and Dating
By Frank Kermit
Elections — a time when choices are made, protests have audience, and friendships destroyed (we hope temporarily) over loyalties to political stances.
For some it is a time to face the realities of government policies that may affect the quality of your life (depending on the stage of life you are at) and for others it is a time to hide your head in the sand when the campaigns to make your vote count come knocking.
The one question that comes up in my practice during this period is what to do when you are dating someone that had different political views, or supports a different political party.
As always, the answer is, it depends.
Even the best of couples may disagree on topics that could be more important than not.
However, although common interests and aligned thinking are necessary for long term relationship success, that does not automatically mean that a couple must agree on everything. That type of picture-perfect partnering simply is neither realistic nor necessary.
The first question is what the nature of your relationship is to begin with. If you are involved casually or dating someone in a manner where you are enjoying mutual companionship, but the desire to have a future together is beyond the scope of the couple in question, then voting for different parties is a moot topic.
If you are at a stage of your life where you are past the point of seeking a life partner to have children with, and aren’t even looking for a live-in partner, then those relationship categories of non-committal casual couplings really do not require that the partners be on the same page at all when it comes to politics.
In those cases, these relationship categories simply take the dating dynamics for what it is; a valued togetherness that simply has limits when it comes to certain expectations and short-term commitments.
When it does matter is when a dating duo are seeking a serious long term alliance, whether it be a candidate for living together, having children or forming a blended family unit. In this case, the particular political parties may actually be irrelevant per se, and it is more about the compatible value systems of the couple.
Could an individual who wants limited amounts of government involvement in general day to day live have children with someone that pushes for more government policy at the cost of individual privacy? Can a person who values new independence build a future with someone that wants to maintain the status quo?
Well, given that people who are compatible and have similar backgrounds, can still struggle with commitment and end up divorced, it really comes down to the couple in question, and not how passionate they are about hot topic politics.
Also, given that the platforms of various political parties change over the years, or that politicians themselves switch parties (not necessarily personal beliefs), the best the aspiring couple can do is identify their own belief systems of good and bad and be able to communicate where they individually draw the line about what is right and wrong for themselves.
If and when such a self actualized human being finds a like minded romantic partner, then compatibility and chemistry can work together in an alliance to make love happen. Couples who make the extra effort to know themselves, and learn about each other on that deeper level always get my vote.
Ally vs. Enemy:
Understanding The Emotional Needs of Men
By Frank Kermit
The best way I know how to teach people about the emotional needs of men is to break it down to absolute fundamentals. If people can understand those, then people can understand the emotional motivations behind the choices men make in who men choose to have sex with, date and make long term commitments too.
A woman can only play one of two roles in a man's life. She is either his ally or she is his enemy. She cannot be both. In every action a woman takes, and in everything a woman says, a man will judge her on an emotional level that he may not necessarily be conscious of in deciding if he should have her in his life, have sex with her and/or make a commitment to her. If a woman addresses a man's emotional needs he will feel that she is his ally, and potentially feel enough of a bonding trust to commit to her. When a woman violates the emotional needs of a man, he feels he might have her as an enemy in his life, but he may still continue to have sex with her pending how bad a violation of his other emotional needs, though he has already emotionally decided he will never commit to her.
One of the ways that the emotional needs of men and women differ is in the way men and women categorize each other. Women can only feel that she can play one of two roles in a man's life. She is either his mother or his lover. A conflict occurs when a woman feels like a man's mother (at which point she loses any sense of being attracted to him), and the man feels she is his ally because she acts like his mother (which does not negate his sexual desires and in fact, he may interpret her mothering him as a sign of her being romantically interested in him). The more I learn to understand couples and relationships, the more I really do experience moments when I am in awe that anyone ever gets together anymore when there are absolutely no outside factors involved like family pressure, cultural expectations or just needy desperation. Sigh.
One of the main differences between men and women is how their emotional needs relate to sex. For women, the act of sex can be an efficient means of addressing her particular and individual emotional needs profile. For men, sex IS an emotional need. Sex will not address a variety of a man's emotional needs; sex only address the one need: his emotional need for sex. This is a key reason why when men and women attempt to enter into "friends-with-benefits" types of relationships, it is usually the woman who will start to develop more feelings of attachment than men. During continual sexual activity, women are having multiple emotional needs met during their sexual session, and that triggers feelings of deeper attraction and loving attachment. Men get the sex, and the emotional balance that men experience from sexual intercourse, but do not necessarily get any of their other emotional needs met during sex, depending on the context of their sexual activity.
Most men will have certain emotional needs in common such as his need to have his reputation protected, his need for recharge time, his need for femininity, his masculine-identity, and finding a woman he can trust as his secret keeper who will put their relationship ahead of all other people. However each man has an individual emotional needs profile that defines which emotional needs are more important and less important to him. The key to gain his commitment will be found in assessing his emotional needs, and being able to address his most important ones to the degree he emotionally responds too.
Introduction to the 10 Year Anniversary Edition of From Loser To Seducer
by Jade Kermit
He likes to tell me that he seduced me. I roll my eyes at him and tell him I seduced him. The truth lies somewhere in the middle, in that we seduced each other. When we met we were two people who had been bashed by life to the point where we both had decided enough was enough. We had both made the life choice long before we meet each other to change. To examine our choices, to examine ourselves and decide, in our hearts what we really wanted and who we were inside.
When I met Frank in 2006 the world of online dating was still a fairly new thing. I was pretty new to it but really ready for that opportunity to meet, not just someone, I was looking for my life partner. The first time we were matched up online, Frank sent the only thing that was allowed on the site we were both on: an auto request to email me. I instantly replied no! The picture he had emailed me shocked me, and made me wonder what sort of man was he? There he was smiling into the camera, decked out in a purple sequined shirt, every finger adorned with silver and golden rings, many of them skull faces and around his neck more chains than I could count! He also wore a Fedora hat and was holding a cane. I decided that he was probably a player, and rejected him. Who dresses like that??
After rejecting Frank, I decided to date as many men as I could with the purpose of finding a partner, someone to build a future with. Alas my time was filled with a lot of “first and only dates”. Men I realized years later that either weren’t ready to date, had hardly ever dated, or were closet virgins! It was at this time that I was well and truly at the end of my patience for dating in general. I remember telling myself “okay, just one more date and if that doesn’t work out, that’s it.” I had resigned myself to work on my career, probably leave the Province to head to Alberta, which at that time was paying big money for skilled workers.
I didn’t know the dating site I was on allowed for people to retry contacting someone. So I was surprised when I received another request from Frank. This time he sent me a different picture where he was dressed in what I considered to be ‘normal clothing’. I realized that I had judged him too fast. How did I know what he was really like? Throwing caution to the wind, I decided the Universe was giving me a second chance, so I suspended my judgment and said yes!
Through emails and eventually telephone calls we started to hash out our terms. We seemed to get along but there were things that had to be made clear. Choices that could not be repeated and personality types we never wanted to encounter again, much less date! Due to various circumstances including my getting badly injured at work, Frank and I ended up being able to spend a lot of time together. In that time, we formed a bond and understanding that surprised and scared both of us. We would often look at each other and voice in wonder if such a connection was truly possible, or if it was even real. Two weeks into dating we were shopping for an engagement ring! I insisted on something cheap and cheerful, I was going to go the fake but beautiful route, but Frank insisted on my having a real gemstone ring. The one I picked surprised him. It’s not expensive or fancy but it’s beautiful and it was on sale! (I love a bargain)
All these years’ later women will still gush over Frank. When we attend dinner parties I watch them lean forward to listen to his every word. They will unconsciously flirt with him while their oblivious partners sit beside them. Why don’t these men notice? They don’t see Frank as a threat. He’s not your typical catch from a physical standpoint, and yet with his every word, every gesture they are hooked. Later on, these same women will tell me “Oh you are so lucky to have Frank!” and look at me with hidden distaste. Why? Jealousy for one and, well I am not a typical catch from a physical standpoint either! Standing almost 6 feet tall I tower over most everyone, including men. I am no delicate flower, but I am a catch! With my biggest smile I will turn to these women and say, “Frank is lucky too.” I am not a jealous woman. I know what I offer and am not threatened by other women. If you are confident in yourself, and what you have as a couple there is no need to be jealous.
I never asked or expected a date to pay for my meal. I never expected to be treated like a Princess. Princesses are for fantasy films and little girls. I am a woman. I am intelligent, strong and not afraid to speak my mind. I am self-sufficient and hard working. I never NEEDED a man in my life, but I WANTED one. I wanted a husband, a life partner to share the journey with.
People ask me: What is Frank really like?” Frank is just like his writings. Honest and straightforward. If you know how many books, lectures and other works he has done then you know he is hard working. The hardest working person I know. He is loyal and dedicated and yes, seductive. So subtly seductive that he has to rein it in sometimes in order to keep our social circles comfortable. He is also caring, loving, and extremely considerate. When I was injured all those years ago, he is the one that showed up at my door carrying groceries and a cane for me because he knew I could barely walk. My family never came; they said it was “too far” to bother to help me. Frank made a 2-hour journey on the bus to help me. That is the kind of man that he is.
Frank is also still a dork. Completely and utterly! He still loves comics, especially Ghost Rider. He gets pretty excited over kids toys. And although he denies it- he really does love our cats. (I’ve caught him snuggling them) He is prone to what we call “Frankisms” statements that make my head hurt but make me laugh at the same time. An example: One freezing cold winter day after he had been outside, I asked him “Is it slippery out there?” His answer? “Only where there’s ice!” He wasn’t joking. He truly thought that answer was helpful.
For anyone that fears losing him or herself if they “transform” from Frank’s work, don’t be afraid. Embrace the change, and know that the best parts of you will not only continue, they will thrive. The obstacles that held you back will dissolve and you will wonder why you resisted for so long.
I remember when I read Everything Out Of Her Mouth Is A Test in the early days of dating Frank. I was sitting on his bed in his tiny one room apartment. I sat there with my mouth open in shock. “You broke the code!??” I said to him in disbelief. “I know,” he said proudly, smiling at me. At the time I was worried that there wouldn’t be any mystery left, that he would be able to read me so well I’d be uncomfortable and hate it. In truth sometimes I do hate it! Mostly though, I am grateful that he “gets me” especially on the days that I am being the most difficult person and he has the patience of a saint, because he knows what my Emotional Needs are.
Get your copy of the 10 Year Anniversary Edition of From Loser To Seducer
Dr. Laurie Betito Quotes