As a Dating Hall of Famer, it is my duty and responsibility to postulate and educate in the hope that one day I can pass the torch because I’ve found my own bonfire.
As we march toward Valentine’s Day, I’ll continue to share what I’ve learned and what I still haven’t managed to put together. One and one have not added up to two for me, but it isn’t for lack of effort.
Lesson Number Two: Behavioral Therapy…or what I like to call “Attack of the Psychotic Women”…(this one is for the ladies)
Wake up girls…internet dating is giving men an education. They are getting hip to all of our tricks and using them against us. In the past, men might date a handful of women and settle on one. Now they can sit in front of their computers like a dating slot machine and keep pulling the handle, hoping for a bigger payout.
They can “cyber-date” dozens, taking bites out of us like a box of cheap chocolates, tossing us back when they find another one they want to taste.
They’ve got the codebook down pat. They know all the hot button words and they are not afraid to use them just to provoke a reaction…especially if they’re poised to flee and are looking for an exit.
The frontrunner: PSYCHOTIC a.k.a. BIPOLAR
Ninety-nine percent…that’s right…NINETY-NINE PERCENT of the men that I have spoken to, corresponded with, or dated have all told me that their exes were psychotic…and most of those women were bipolar.
When I point out to them that this is not only statistically improbable, it is impossible, they insist that it’s true.
The conversation goes something like this:
Me: Was she psychotic when you married her?
Him: No. She got crazier and crazier.
Me: What part did you play in her mental breakdown?
Him: Absolutely nothing.
Me: Would you still be interested in her if she sought treatment and recovered?
Him: Nope. I’ve moved on. I’ve rekindled my frat boy behavior and I am having the time of my life banging as many women as I can.
Okay…that last comment didn’t happen…but it was the underlying subtext….I’m just saying…
Apparently men believe that bipolarism is a female epidemic, even though statistically it affects males and females equally. Approximately 2.6 percent of the population suffers from it…if half of those are men…then 1.3 percent are women…so their theory holds no basis in fact. When you consider the unpredictability and lack of knowledge about the treatment of bipolar disorder, then you have the perfect storm for the blame game.
To men, PMS and menopause are the portals to insanity…we’ve only got ourselves to blame. Stoicism is the bane of our existence…chins up…stay tight lipped and deal with it. Having a chick on t.v. plugging a hole in the bottom of a leaky rowboat with a tampon isn’t doing us any favors, girls.
We can’t expect the guys to understand cramps and bleeding any more than we can explain what it’s like to push an eight pound baby out of a hole the size of the mouth of an eight ounce water glass.
What we CAN do is stop giving them fuel for the “Bonfire of the Insanities”. Our “psychotic” behavior is usually a reaction to their lack of a reaction or interaction. Once they get the feel for those controls…the relationship is doomed…unless you take immediate steps to neutralize the situation.
I’m developing two little tricks that I am applying in my own new life…call it a social experiment. If you are in a failing relationship that you want to save, they might work. If you’ve jumped from a sinking ship and don’t want to be tossed a life preserver by your ex…they might help you too. And if you’re in a new relationship…starting off with a sense of intrigue is powerful…never show all of your cards, girls…never.
Number One: The Seven Second Delay
Let’s pretend for a moment that your significant other purposely picks a fight and says something inflammatory…just to get a reaction out of you.
Don’t say a word. In your head, count out seven seconds…one one thousand…two one thousand…you get the picture.
This will put him totally off balance. He will stare at you waiting for a response. Seven seconds of silence has a long hang time and is about the same length as a man’s attention span. It will play with his mind, and he won’t get the headwind he was hoping to build up.
He might get frustrated, even a little loud. Don’t lose your cool. Tell him you are thinking about how to respond and wait another SEVEN SECONDS. Cock your head to one side and nod slightly…like you might even be agreeing with what he has said.
Slowly the tables will turn and he will start answering for you, stumbling and over-explaining what he meant…thinking that you don’t understand.
By the time a couple of seven second sets have passed, he will be so puzzled that he will forget the point he insisted on making to begin with.
Proactive instead of reactive…the seven second delay can work for you. It also buys you some time if you’re not sure what you need or want to say.
Do not, under any circumstance, explain the seven second delay to him…he will use it against you, and you might react NEGATIVELY and start behaving like a PSYCHOTIC woman…it’s a side effect…like taking a drug that has the possibility to cause blurry vision, nausea, diarrhea, and in some cases a fatal reaction. You take your chances if you reveal the secret.
And if you do…you’re on your own grasshopper.
Number Two: Don’t End Any Sentence With A Question.
If you want someone to tell you everything you need to know, stop asking questions. Human beings are blabbermouths by nature. Men don’t like to be interrogated and will turn questions into accusations to avoid confrontation. This is especially true of a man who is misbehaving.
Simply make statements. The men will start to fill in the blanks. They will begin to offer information BECAUSE YOU ARE NOT ASKING FOR IT.
If a man has just come out of a marriage or a relationship with a “psychotic” woman, he will tell you that all she did was grill him. Of course he will not tell you that he was behaving badly and deserved the barbequing.
If you can resist asking questions…he will find you irresistible. Tell him what YOU did all day. DON’T ASK HIM. He will tell you because you didn’t ask. If must know how his day was, say it in a statement…”I hope you had a good day.” This is just a skewed version of positive reinforcement.
We gals always seem to ask the questions we don’t really want the answer to. “Do you love me?” “Do I look fat in these jeans?” “Do you think she’s prettier than me?”
Try these: “I love you.” “I think I look good in these jeans.” “I wish I had her legs/hair/skin/eyes.”
Train yourself to end every statement in a period or an exclamation point. You will be a positive energy in his eyes…instead of a negative drain.
Stop asking questions and you will get all the answers you need.
Here’s a few more hot button words that guys are using like grenades…read them and let them self-destruct…they can only hurt you IF YOU LET THEM.
Negative: Girls…we cannot win this one. Let it go. No matter how hard you try, you can’t negate negative. It is a fungus word. It drops like napalm and sticks like Crazy Glue. Men love this word. They know that we will turn ourselves inside out denouncing that we are negative.
Negative bursts into flames and quickly spreads. My ex told me that I was negative. My response, “I learned from the master.” Next stop…basement.
Negative breeds negative. Deploy the seven second delay and avoid denial at all costs. If you are being cattle-prodded with negative as an adjective…avoid turning it into a verb at all costs. Say you feel sick and have to throw up. It will buy you some time…he’ll reconsider his approach and he might even feel badly that he made you feel sick.
Put a smile on your face. Laugh easily. Happy and silly can be sexy and it diffuses a lot of situations.
Drama: Another old chestnut…and another female unfriendly phenomenon…you don’t hear a lot about “Drama Kings”. If a man says that he doesn’t want drama, then it means that he will not respond well to confrontation or accusations. He will not feel the need to explain himself and does not think you are entitled to know any more than he is willing to reveal.
In my experience…any time someone has told me that their life is an open book, it has turned out to be a short story with a predictable ending.
Drama is the broad term word for “my business is none of your business”. If you are a cryer or a screamer then you have no chance with a man who says he does not like drama. If you decide to go after this creature anyway, you are setting yourself up to display negative psychotic behavior, no matter how hard you try not to behave that way.
Don’t create drama…life brings enough of it to us…when that happens, it is extremely important to know that you are with someone who can weather that storm with you.
Don’t ask…don’t tell…no drama.
Baggage: We all have baggage. The difference is in knowing how much to carry around, and how much to put away in the attic. Some men like baggage. They are hero wired. They want to be the one to solve your problems. This does not have to be a bad thing. But be cautious girls…some heroes always need to be saving the day and if they feel like they aren’t needed by you in that capacity anymore, they will move on and find another damsel in distress.
Most men have baggage and use it to store all that drama and negativity.
Best to only carry what you can fit in the overhead compartment…and by all means, leave the explosives for the experts.
Honesty: I don’t think anyone really knows what this word means. It is subjective and objective. If you had to color honesty, it would be gray.
Everyone lies. It is part of human nature to be deceptive. We are creatures of fight or flight and lying buys us time to decide which we have to do to survive. No one likes to be lied to…but anyone who says that they don’t lie is lying.
The difference is the color of the lie. A “white lie” is socially and sometimes morally acceptable. These are lies meant to protect feelings and save the messenger.
Most of the time when we hear a white lie, we are totally aware that we are being lied to.
It’s those “black lies”, the dark and dangerous ones, that blindside us. We become defensive and offensive and everyone involved gets sucked into the whirlpool.
When a man says he wants honesty, he has been damaged. He has been lied to and has done some lying in return. Sometimes that’s the only way to survive being lied to.
If we could all apply the Golden Rule and treat others as we would like to be treated it, things would go a lot smoother.
The problem with that…there are some people who enjoy mistreating people and there are those that accept being treated badly, grateful for any kind of attention.
I’m not sure if we want honesty…or we want the truth. Sometimes you can’t have both.
Controlling: This is a minefield. It is a classic power struggle. Being controlling is very often the byproduct of being ignored or opinionated. There is nothing wrong with being opinionated as long as you are open to the fact that everyone else has an opinion too.
There are two kinds of controllers. There are those who operate out of fear. They don’t like to think that someone else is responsible for their destiny.
Then there are those that operate out of opinion. They refuse to entertain the possibility that someone else might have a better idea.
It is not necessarily a totally bad thing to be a controller. They are proactive and take a stand. This can, however, cause a negative reaction. It is a slippery slope.
If someone tells you that they don’t like controllers, then they have been told one time too many what to do. I’m not saying this is a dealbreaker…but if someone specifically says they don’t want a controller…prepare to be controlled.
This is Super Bowl weekend…a perfect time to take a fly-by with the seven second delay and ending all your sentences with a period or an exclamation point instead of a question mark.
It will take some practice before you’re ready to fly solo, so provide a distraction…make sure you smell good and look good…you are the prize.
***None of these tips apply if you are in an abusive relationship. That is a grave situation and if you do not have anyone to confide in then seek professional help immediately. This is your life.
Day three hundred and twenty three…323-2/3…homework…