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Note: This reader urgently asked the BSG not to post her name or email address. Gentle Readers…the BSG never posts names or email addresses and usually strips out any geographic identifiers (like cities) as well. There is safety in anonymity, the BSG believes.
Dear Bitter Single Guy: I met a guy recently that I’m very attracted to that also has a nice personality but has very messed up teeth. I am an attractive female who is not shallow, but does not understand why he hasn’t fixed his teeth. I want to ask him but I am afraid to hurt his feelings. I had messed up teeth from sucking my thumb but my mother fixed my teeth when I was a child. Even if she hadn’t I would have gotten braces. They are expensive but doctors allow you to make payments slowly. The true problem I have is that I get distracted every time he opens his mouth or smiles. I keep finding myself looking at his teeth. And he’s caught me a few times. Then when I try to avoid looking it makes me feel awkward because then I can’t look at him in his face while he’s talking. What should I do? I like him and would like to continue dating him. Should I ask him to get braces? Tooth Fairy
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Dear TF: The Bitter Single Guy thinks it would be easy to tell you that you’re being really shallow and that love is tough enough to find without picking on something minor like unattractive teeth. However the BSG knows, as most of his readers do, that sometimes these seemingly shallow issues are the toughest ones to get past.
OK TF, this could be a bit of a time bomb and won’t be easy for you, but the BSG is sensing that this is a big enough issue that it will get in the way of your relationship unless you say something. What’s that you say? If you say something to Snaggle Tooth, he might be totally freaked out and turned off and dump you? Correct; he might. But the BSG doesn’t give your relationship much future if you can’t look him in the face when he’s talking to you.
The right time to tell him is not immediately before, during or after an intimate moment. The BSG will guess that Snaggle Tooth is somewhat self-conscious about his dental deficiency so if you bring it up in a moment of intimate vulnerability it will be especially painful. You should ask about it very casually in a very casual moment that also gives the space for a deeper (yet casual) conversation should the need come up. Maybe the two of you will be meeting to go to a movie and you could (casually) say something like “I have a friend who had braces as an adult and I noticed that some of your teeth seemed to go in different directions. Have you ever thought about adult braces?” The BSG recommends avoiding words like “crooked”, “damaged” or, heaven help us, “gross” in order to avoid charging the conversation with tons of negative energy.
That said, Snaggle Tooth isn’t likely to feel good about himself regardless of your attempts at being casual and since the male ego can be somewhat fragile anyway, the BSG guesses that this might be the end of your relationship since it’s unlikely that you and Snag have built up sufficient foundation to survive a hit like this one.
Wow, after all that the BSG finds himself actually coming right back to telling you that you probably need to learn to live with Snaggle Tooth as he is, or prepare to break up with him (or be dumped). Good luck with that, TF.
Dear Loveawake: What do you do if you are always picking people apart? I am very critical of not only myself but everyone I meet. I seem to find the worst in people. I don’t want to be this type of person anymore because it is affecting my wife and my kids. My wife says she is not willing to live with my negativity anymore but I don’t know how to change. – Mac
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Dear Mac: You are not alone. Many people find themselves focusing more on what is wrong with a person rather than what is right. I’m going to spend a little more time than I usually do in this column showing you some examples on how you can actually train yourself to change the way you see yourself as well as others. You can train yourself to make this shift from negative to positive by simply talking back to yourself as soon as you start to think a negative thought about someone.
Here are some examples of some negative traits that can be turned into positive.
Say you know someone who is unenthusiastic. How can we look at this trait as a positive? This person is calm and soothing to be around. He or she is usually level-headed and well grounded. This person doesn’t get upset at trivial matters and isn’t prone to mood swings. He or she is often patient, consistent, and low-key. Statements that would make this person feel good are:
I like the way you have such a calming effect on everyone.
I like the fact that you are so even-tempered.
It’s such a pleasure to be with such an easygoing person.
It’s such a pleasure to see you so relaxed and comfortable most of the time.
Is someone you know indecisive? Here is a person who is open to all possibilities. He or she usually sees many alternatives in any given situation. This person is often flexible, open-minded, and philosophical. Statements that make this type of person feel good are:
I like being with someone who takes time to make a decision and doesn’t act impulsively.
I like being with someone who considers other people’s feelings and needs along with his own. People who know you are lucky to have someone who listens to everyone’s opinion and gives everyone a voice in the final decision.
Do you know someone who you think is egotistical? Here is a person who knows what he or she wants. This person is goal-oriented and usually assumes leadership roles. He or she takes on a great deal of responsibility. He or she is often independent, confident, and strong-willed. Statements that make this type of person feel good are:
I like the way you are always in control of a situation.
It is so wonderful to be with someone who feels good about themselves. You teach people to stand up for what they believe in.
It is great being with someone who is so positive in their approach to life.
Do you view someone as disorganized? This is a person who is fun to be with. He or she has the ability to live in the present. This person is never in a hurry and will make you stop and smell the roses. He or she is often creative, spontaneous, and multifaceted. Statements that make this type of person feel good are:
I like the way you can do many things at the same time. It’s so nice to know someone who puts fun ahead of orderliness.
I like the way you don’t let little things bother you. You always have such original ideas.
Do you know someone who you think is too emotional? Here is a person who usually lives life in a passionate way. He or she has a deeper level of understanding because he or she is very sensitive and intuitive. This person is often tender, compassionate, and sentimental. Statements that make this type of person feel good are:
I like the fact that you are deeply concerned about everyone.
I like the fact that I can tell you anything and you can feel what I feel.
I like the fact that you feel so passionate about life.
I like how deeply things touch you.
I hope these examples have helped you to see trait in your own personality as well as others in a more positive light. Life is too short to dwell on anyone’s shortcomings. Put some blinders on and accentuate the positive. You will find out that you will have more fun and people will want to be around you as well. Everyone deserves to feel good. Help your children feel good about themselves by sending positive messages and supporting their dreams, and make your mate happy by verbalizing the things you love about him or her. You’ll see that as you continue to notice something positive, even if it’s just one little thing, you’ll start to get a positive response back. When you make someone feel good about themselves, they will want to do the same to you. – Dr. Ellen
It feels good to be posting again. I’m super busy these days, but I wanted to share a story on here that is very relevant to getting real success with dating women.
Like I said, I’ve been busy. And while I’ve been busy, I had taken on some bad eating habits and stopped going to the gym. As you can imagine, I gained some weight.
Growing up, I was always a skinny kid. And I mean skinny – I wanted to put on muscle but I didn’t know how and anything I ate burned to vapor the second it hit my stomach (I know that might sound great to some people, but being a lanky, skinny kid isn’t exactly a picnic either.)
In 2015, I had read up on how to gain a lot of muscle. And I mean, I went all out – I read tons of information about nutrition, fitness, exercise, etc. I followed the “bulking” diet to the letter.
I was confident in the reading that I had done and I followed my program religiously. I ate every meal at the time I was supposed to, I measured out all the food exactly as it should have been and I worked out HARD, just like the program prescribed.
Fact was, I wanted the results of being a bigger, muscular guy, so I was willing to put in the serious time and effort.
How did it work out? Well, I put on a lot of muscle and a bunch of fat too. I had never had the experience of gaining fat, so it was kind of novel for me and some extra fat didn’t look all that bad on me.
Problem was, I eventually fell out of the good habits I had set up. I stopped going to the gym, started eating unhealthy foods and my body went from looking good to looking mushy and kind of fat.
When I got fed up with looking like a fat mess, I started hitting the gym again. Problem was, I started my gym routine up following the same routine I was using for when I was a super skinny guy (a mass gaining routine for a “hard gainer”). As a result, I put on quite a bit of fat that I didn’t need to.
The fact was I knew that I would end up gaining more fat on top of what I had, but in my mind I was convinced that this was necessary to see any kind of gains. I was so entrenched in the books preaching that I didn’t even think to try something new based on my new personal circumstances.
And here’s my point: According to everything that I had read, I was convinced that starting on a fat loss routine would be a bad idea. The sources that I read had me convinced that doing fat loss exercises would ultimately screw me over since it would “eat up” all the muscle I had and, with less muscle, my metabolism would slow down.
This wasn’t a conundrum for me when I was skinny and didn’t care about a little extra fat, but at this point the game was different and I needed to figure out how to solve the problem for my situation.
I knew what I was doing was not working. That was clear. But the question then became: What’s the right move? What should I be doing instead of what used to work for me?
Fortunately we live in the age of the internet, so I hopped on a bunch of fitness forums and asked questions. I shared what I was doing, what I believed was the right way to do things (not to assert that I was right, just to give my thought-process) and what I was afraid of/what was holding me back (in this case, fear of losing muscle.)
I got a lot of great responses. AND some responses pointed me to a lot of great articles at Loveawake dating site, all with clinical studies referenced, etc.
Problem was – there were many points where some single people said one thing and another group said the complete opposite! Everyone spoke with conviction. Everyone had good articles and testimonials to back them up. I honestly felt stuck, frustrated and overwhelmed because it just wasn’t adding up.
So what did I do? I experimented… I took the advice from one online dating group, tried it for a while, documented my results and then tried the other advice and documented it.
Bottom line: If you want progress, you have to take real world action. I am all for reading up and gaining knowledge, but there comes a point where you have to actively try different things and find what works for you, even if they’re uncomfortable or unfamiliar.
The good news is I did figure out a great diet and exercise plan to fit my needs now. But along the way I learned a lot of lessons that translate directly to learning online dating with Baguio girls:
1) Do not be so convinced you have it all figured out. There is so much you don’t know – and that’s a great thing. There is so much that can be learned.
2) Really assess your situation. Situations change – make sure the solution that you are applying is really a match and not just what you’re used to or what used to work.
3) Be willing to explore available knowledge AND experiment in the real world. Don’t just “study” and “theorize”.
4) Get educated, but experiment once you have at least one viable course of action in front of you. Then you’ll at least know if you need to research more, adjust what you have or ask questions for a deeper question you uncovered.
Hope my sharing helped. Feel free to share any thoughts you have about learning, dieting, pick-up, etc.
P.S. Are you on the newsletter yet? We just sent out a brand new, free e-book report on how to pass the tests single women throw at you. If you missed it, GET ON THERE so you can get it too.
A reader named Kate dumped her man. Twice-ish. He doesn’t really want to come back for another round (she doesn’t say why, but I have to assume that it’s because he’s less of a moron than I usually am.) She’s trying to figure out where it all when wrong. Let’s find out.
My boyfriend and I of a year broke up about a month ago, I was the one who did it because I tried telling him how I felt and he completely wrote me off, didn’t speak to me for a day because I made him mad, I broke up with him that night because I wanted him to fight for me and in his eyes he said I “dropped” him again and it would be our second time breaking up both times I did it.
Wait. You broke up, didn’t talk for a day, and then broke up again? Ok, I…think I get it. Kinda. But the part that sticks out is the, “I wanted him to fight for me.” Oh, Kate, that’s not a great reason to dump somebody, lemme tell you. More in a bit.
we went through a very love/hate not talking to each other phase until last night I went over his house just to speak to him he doesn’t understand where I was coming from and I was trying to explain and hes so sarcastic and blunt person it kinda hurts sometimes anyway, his sarcasm kicked in and we both laughed again and we just looked at each other and kissed and held each other nothing more but then the fact remains were still broken up and I asked him what this meant and he said he doesn’t know what he wants he doesn’t want to give me the opportunity to break his heart for the 3rd time, he is going through a rough time now and from what I know there isnt another girl.
Not to be Conan the Grammarian here, but I mean…why put those two commas in there at all…is all I’m saying.
but I’m just gonna give him space, what would he doesn’t know what he wants mean? I will always love this boy, I just wanted him to listen and fight for me.
Ok Kate, here’s a quick news item item of which you might want to take note:
BREAKING NEWS: WHEN YOU DUMP SOMEONE, THEY FEEL DUMPED
I know. Weird, right?
You really can’t be playing with people’s emotions like that, dumping them to try to use that as leverage to get them to change behavior that you don’t like. I’ll give you a metaphor here. If you went into your job and your boss fired you, would your first reaction be, “Gosh…I gotta come in early tomorrow and work really hard!”
Or whatever it is that people think when they want to be better at their job. (I’ve never been much of a “hard worker.” I’m medically lazy, ok? It’s a condition.)
SO WHAT DOES HE MEAN?
He says two things to you:
I’m not sure what I want, and
I don’t want to give you the opportunity to break my heart for the 3rd time.
Manslation? Err…seems like this one’s kind of a “face value” sort of thing. When he says he’s not sure what he wants, my guess is that he’s probably a little ambivalent. On the one hand, he likes you as much as he did (however much that was). On the other hand, you’ve dumped him a couple of times. Recently.
It seems pretty clear to me that he’s at least still on the fence about giving it another shot. It does NOT seem like he’s thinking, “Ok, she dumped me. I gotta be a better boyfriend!”
If you want him to do that, in my opinion, you’re going to have to throw him a bone here.
EXPLAIN YOURSELF, WOMAN!
Ok, your ploy to get him to fight for you was a total bust, Kate. So acknowledge it. Initiate a conversation about this. Tell him exactly what you were TRYING to do. Right now, your relationship isn’t heading anywhere fantastic anyway, so you’ve got nothing to lose by utilizing a little something that I like to call “resorting to the truth.”
I know, I know. Ick. Telling him what you want him to know? Bleah. You just want him to know to fight for you and to listen to you and all of it. Sure. Of course you do. And I’m sure he just wanted you NOT to dump him. Right now it’s not working out for anybody.
Tell him something along the lines of, “Look, when I said/did XYZ, what I was trying to do was XYZ. Obviously that wasn’t the way to go about it. What I was trying to do, though, was…”
If he hasn’t figured it out yet, don’t assume he’s going to. Space isn’t really necessary here, it seems. What is necessary here is an open line of communication between you. You’ve put a bit of a dent in that by, you know, dumping him. Let him know that you KNOW what you did, and ask if he’d be willing to move past it. That’s what I say, anyway.
What do YOU say, ladies? What’s this guy saying?
I shouldn’t actually say I got dumped, because technically we only went on two dates. So maybe the word “rejected” is a better term to use. But, you know, I am overdue. For the past 6 months I have been on countless dates, unfortunately not being attracted to most of them. (except for Right Now Guy that is) So in all of those cases, I was the Dumper, not the Dumpee. So I guess it was only a matter of time for the rolls to be reversed!
So here’s my story: I went on my first date with him over a week ago. My favorite…met at the beach during sunset. I was instantly attracted to him. We walked and talked and felt like the conversation was really flowing. I was super comfortable around him and could be myself, not really holding back anything I wanted to say or to be goofy if I wanted to. It was refreshing. But as we were parting ways he never mentioned wanting to see me again or asked what my plans were for the week. So my instincts told me, he wasn’t interested. I wrote him off in my mind, not expecting to hear from him.
Surprise. Surprise. The next day I received an email saying he enjoyed our time together and wanted to see me again. So we planned for a lunch date on Sunday. As I was strolling in on my bike to meet him at the restaurant, across the street I could see his handsomeness (I know its not word, but it fits!). Wow, is he rockin’! We had a yummy lunch with good intellectual conversation then strolled to the Venice boardwalk. Then, it was time for me to leave even though I would of liked to hang out a bit longer.
Ok, it being the second date, usually a kiss takes place by now, right?! No kiss. Nothing. But I actually didn’t think to myself, “Why didn’t he kiss me” because really it was a crazy place to have a first kiss. We were standing amongst a crowd of people on the Venice boardwalk. (And if you have ever experienced Venice on a Sunday afternoon, then you know its not the most “romantic” place for a first kiss.) As I biked away, I thought he is really awesome and I am looking forward to learning more about him.
I emailed him the next day, thanking him for a great time. Later that night I received the DREADED email. The kind where you can tell by the first 3 words where its going…you just know. He actually wrote the email in a very classy, polite and clear way that I really appreciated. Still hurtful of course, but I instantly thought “Wow, what a great guy”. Instead of thinking, “He sucks”. Just a few weeks ago, I wrote about how to tell someone you aren’t interested. He approached it exactly the same way. I did email him back a very nice note thanking him for his approach. If anything, I want to encourage him as a male that he did a good thing by telling me in a classy way, instead of doing the immature thing by just dropping off the face-of-the-earth. It still totally bummed me out. I was really interested in this guy. Sucks.
I gave myself a minute to be bummed, than I stepped back to look at the big picture. I decided to pull out my book the Tao of Dating, by Dr. Alex Benzer, because I remembered a great statement he wrote about “rejection” that uses the idea of “re-framing”. He writes: “Since we have considerable latitude in interpreting the meaning of events — free to pick positive, neutral or negative ones – we should pick meanings that are most useful to us. The useful interpretations will tend to make us feel better and be more effective, while the negative ones have the opposite effect.”
When it comes to dealing with men, if you feel you may have been rejected, instead of thinking “That guy must not really like me” or “I must be an awful person,” try thinking this: “I never get rejected — I only find out which men have excellent taste. And if he says no, he has done me a great service by saving me time and effort.” Notice how with this re-frame, you can actually feel good about rejection and use the event as a positive impetus to meet even better men.
The other powerful reframe you can use is to imagine each approach not as an opportunity for success or failure, but as a chance to see what happens. Approach the situation not with a do-or-die mentality, but rather with endless curiosity….that there is no failure – only feedback. And since something is going to happen 100% of the time, you are guaranteed feedback and cannot possibly fail! ….It provides the motivation to open yourself up to wonder and to imagine what the gift-wrapped box of possibility holds as you just wait to see what happens next. Always remember dating is suppose to be fun."
I love his thoughts on this subject and many more, so if you haven’t gotten a copy of his book, you should. Its a great present for any single girlfriend…the best dating book I have ever read…seriously. (and no, I am not getting any commission on his book! : )
On another note…one lesson I think I learned from this experience, which I never even thought of before, is I do believe there is something to be said for meeting in a romantic environment. Both dates were outside in public, during the day, with a lot of people around. Typically other dates I have gone on, they tend to be in a romantic setting, usually at a lounge for a cocktail. I am not saying you need to get drunk or anything to have a romantic connection, but when meeting someone for a 1st or 2nd date there is a lot of pressure to make a quick decision if you are attracted to that person or not. Yes, I will admit that I did not have the crazy-hot-energy feeling between us like I did when I met Right Now Guy, but I do know I was truly intrigued by him and attracted to him. I just wondered if we met in a different environment would it of made a difference. We literally spent 3 hours total with both dates combined.
Secondly, I know instincts are a very powerful thing… and I remembered after the 1st date that my instincts were telling me he was not interested. I do understand why he didn’t make a quick decision after the 1st date because sometimes you need to give it a 2nd date to really know, “yes, I don’t feel the connection”.
And lastly, I always come back to the concept that each man that comes into my life is an unfolding to getting closer to my ‘divine’ mate. I discovered many qualities in this man that really resonated with me, so I look forward to exciting new opportunities!