For the record

Mentervention, if anything, is for women. If men pick up on things I talk about, great. But mostly, it’s for women.

In life, you don’t rant to guys about other guys. (However, I do know men can gossip equally, if not more than women.) You rant to your girlfriends about guys. Your guy friends are the ones you hang out with to feel good, laugh, talk sports, whatever. You don’t get down and dirty about emotions and how you hate how this guy your dating treats you… or whatever.

On the other hand, your guy friends can give great insight to the male species. Hence why I use this blog a lot for surveys. I want to know more about that. I’m curious.

The interesting thing about this blog is that I simultaneously speak to the man and the woman. Sometimes posts are directed towards a specific gender, however, I incorporate the advice to target both men and women. It gets hard sometimes, however, because I am a woman (obviously). It’s hard for me not to feel certain emotions and keep unbiased when addressing things.

The moral of the story? Mentervention isn’t to bash men. It’s not to demasculate, to hurt, to ridicule. Well, maybe ridicule sometimes. Frankly, some things you guys think you can get away with aren’t acceptable. But the blog is meant, truly, to help and be an outlet for women. A “mentervention” started off as something that women needed — not men — because they were dating a loser or someone who didn’t treat them with any respect. From there, it just spawned into a few posts to guys, re: hygeine, proper forms of communication, things you can and cannot do. But for the most part, Mentervention is the scroll accompanying the red flag that’s already been steadily waving in your relationship.

I love men. I hold my male friendships close to my heart because they offer something different than a female companion: brute force. If I’m doing something they don’t like, they’ll call me out on it, no holds barred. Not to mention they’re hilarious. I’m not a feminist; a he-woman man hater. I’m just a chick who calls it like I see it.

Anyway, had to get that out in the open. I’ve become all too accustomed to the question, “Are you afraid of writing Mentervention for fear no man will want to date you?”  Thanks for terrifying me, but no. I’m not afraid that a man will not want to date me based on how I write this column. If a guy doesn’t want to date me because I blog, see ya later. If a man doesn’t want to date me because he doesn’t like the content of this blog, he’s obviously not a guy I’m trying to be with. The man I’m trying to date isn’t riddled with insecurities because his girlfriend writes about the dumb@ss things men do sometimes. 🙂

The gift card debacle

Alright. We had a debate the other day regarding “loaner” engagement rings, if we can call it that. But another interesting topic was brought up at work.

I was making a Starbucks run when one of my colleagues said he’d pay for mine and handed me a gift card (with a smirk). I was thrilled given I ran through my $800 worth of Starbucks cards that I got for Christmas and my birthday in December last month (I have a problem).

Then, my boss starts to carry on. “Why is it that women get all bent out of shape when you try to pay for something with a gift card?”

What?

“If you’re at dinn-ah (British accent) and you pay with a gift card, on a date, the woman gets upset.”

And the debate begins. How do you feel when a man pays with a gift card on a date?

For me, my feelings are divided. If it’s my boyfriend and we’ve been dating for awhile and we’re in that comfort zone where he has seen me with pimple cream on and I know he drools in his sleep, I could not care less if he pays with a gift card. Really. Just pay the bill and let’s leave, k?

However, if I’m on a first date with someone and they bust out a gift card? I’m starting to think this date is a sham.

This isn’t about the money. It’s about the timing. First dates are where first impressions are made. You are essentially trying to “woo” the other person with your looks and dazzle them with your wit and personality. If a guy busts out a gift card to pay for the meal on the first date, my first thought is: “Who is the gift card from?”

His parents? An ex-girlfriend? Work? Great. I’m glad you’re using their money to pay for our first meal. Gift cards as gifts are great, but they’re impersonal, right? If you gift someone a gift card to an expensive jewelry store, that’s wonderful; if you go in and buy the person a necklace, that’s more special, because you took the time to pick out something you think they may like.

Myself and my friend Natalie talked to various men about this yesterday and they all got bent out of shape because apparently we’re now “spoiled little LA girls,” but the fact of the matter is I would feel this way in Texas and always have felt this way. I get it if a guy is broke and struggling through school or whatever, but why ask out a chick on a date if you know you’re not going to have any monetary funds to support it? You are delusional if you think a girl should pay for the first date. Obviously when a man asks a woman out, the expectation (based on chivalry) is that the man will pay for the date. And we don’t want a man paying for the date by the means of someone else. It’s the principal.

“Well, technically the money a man receives from a job is from his business, not his.” Yeah, whatever. Actually, the money is not given as a gift in the form of a salary, the man worked hard to attain that money, and once it’s in his bank account it’s his. It wasn’t a gift for a six month anniversary from an ex-girlfriend or a Christmas gift from Mom and Dad. Woof.

My boss continued how embarrassing/annoying it was when the waitress goes, “Oh, so you want it all on the gift card?” That she makes a point to mention the gift card instead of just taking it and running the expense. Well, if you’re not ashamed of paying with it, what’s there to hide?

Just be a man about it, guys. Don’t use a gift card on the first date, or the second date, or maybe even the third. Once you’re comfortable with a woman (please use descretion on this one), gift card all the live long day. I don’t care. But keep the charm and romance alive, at least the first few weeks, and pay with your own means. Otherwise you don’t need to be dating if your life isn’t in order.

 

Free bling?

courtesy of Matt Klitscher

I don’t know what it is about me, but I’m always really skeptical when I see something that should be expensive being sold for uber cheap. What’s wrong with it? Is it refurbished? It couldn’t be possible that it was actually being sold for what it really costs… could it?

Call it expensive taste, but I feel like you get what you pay for. Granted, I’m rather frugal with my own money, but if I have to lay down the cash, I want to buy something of quality.

So that’s why I have a real hard time imagining myself accept an engagement ring from my future fiance that he didn’t pay for.

Of course I’m referring to The Bachelorette. Let’s get real here: various surveys I have conducted express that men are crazy about their money. Well, not crazy, but that put a lot of emphasis on that part of life. They don’t want to be married until they’re financially stable, they want a woman that is financially stable, etc. So if he’s going to lay out some three months salary (yes, three months) for woman, she better be “the one.”

Needless to say, the men on The Bachelorette get down on bended knee with a Neil Lane engagement ring, given to them free of any cost. I don’t know how I feel about this. First off, it just seems bizarre. Like driving a Phantom and then parking it in front of the shanty you live in. Not that these guys don’t make good money, but Lord knows they’d never afford that engagement ring to begin with.

I’m all about men trying to give women things they never could have dreamed of, but this is taking it too far. Not to mention if the engagement is broken, the woman returns the ring not to the ex-fiance, but to ABC.

It’s like this: if something is free, you tend to take it, right? (Minus things like STDs which are given for free {well, your dignity is compromised} or Chick-Fil-A at the office.) So these guys are given a free ring — a nice one at that — and think they’re in love with this chick, so why wouldn’t they propose?

I would like to see the guys have to lay down the money for a ring and see what really happens when push comes to shove. I don’t think Ben F. would have proposed if he had to buy the ring himself. I don’t think he was 100% sure Ashley was the one, but given the engagement ring, he was ready to find out. I do think JP would have put down for a ring, however. He seems genuine, right? Not that Ben F. doesn’t appear that way, I just can’t see Ben and Ashley working out.

What a great twist for the finale, right? “Who will buy an engagement ring?” It’s more of a surprise, wondering if the guys will both propose.

As far as hand-me-down rings, it’s a different story. If you have a family heirloom, a la Kate Middleton and Princess Diana’s ring, I feel that has sentimental value attached to it as well. It’s an investment because of the emotional pull.

Investment. A critical word. You invest in a nice home, a car, a computer; why not invest in your marriage? I’m not saying a marriage is to be based off money — that’s the last thing I’m saying. But why not just stay boyfriend and girlfriend if you’re not ready to full invest in the relationship, both emotionally, physically and monetarily?

I’m all about freebies but marriage deserves a little more respect than that.

What boys like

This survey was hilarious. I laughed out loud a few times. Some answers we boldly candid, others make me realize how delusional guys really are.

Over 4th of July weekend, I witnessed quite a few of my guy friends objectify women. And I’m not talking like an occasional glance of the breasties, but like, full out, fondling a woman with their eyes. If that makes any sense.

I was amused and then instantly concerned, given I am a woman (obviously).

Then I had a conversation with a few guys who talked about how Katy Perry was not “guy hot,” but “girl hot.” We all know this distinction exists, but what qualities make someone “guy hot?” Furthermore, the guys commented that they want to marry a beautiful woman, but a date a hot one, because hot women will not be hot later on down the road. It’s really smart logic in that it makes absolutely no sense. So what, you screw a few chicks who look good now, and then try to marry a gorgeous woman later? What distringuishes the hot chicks from the gorgeous ones? Is it not just looks, but a personality trait? I NEED ANSWERS!

Obviously this lead me to wonder what guys look for and what they think when they see a woman, or what they feel when they find out a woman’s occupation, etc.. In my opinion, I think Katy Perry is smoking hot. I want D-sized breasts. I think she’s gorgeous and sexy all at the same time. But to the men I spoke to, her breasts don’t make her hot. They’re “funbags,” if you will. Joy.

So let’s dive in.

1.  I prefer women who are

tan — 62%

fair skinned — 38%

I didn’t get any explanations on this answer… mostly because I didn’t ask for any. Whoopsies. But yeah, lives up to the notion that people just look better with a tan. Might not be the healthiest route (unless it’s in a can), but a tan makes you feel healthier and more appealing. Maybe this correlates to the blondes/brunettes question later on…

2.  I am a

breast guy — 62%

butt guy — 38%

I knew this answer. The fact is that most men want both a perfect rack and a luscious booty, but at the end of the day, “breasts are what distinguish a woman from a man. We all have butts.”  (Literal explanation from the survey.) Hmmm. So I guess our vaginas are irrelevant? Just kidding! But yeah, I know plenty of men with breasts and it’s not a good look. Doesn’t make them a woman, however. Just a few pivotal quotes for this question:

(Why breasts are better) “Why is the icing of an Oreo the best? Cookies are great also (butt in this analogy) but if you held a gun to my head I’d want icing.” Bueller? Anyone? So what you’re saying is… you like my breasts in between my butt cheeks? That my (our) breasts are like icing and you want to lick them? I don’t get it. Just no. Please submit another analogy.

“But to be specific, I am a small breast guy or rather B Cup guy. Why is it more appealling? I’m not sure but when I see nice breast, I imagine kissing them, so I guess that means they look kissable.” Mentervention has now turned into a confessional, folks! I appreciate this candidness but I feel a little awkward right now. Honestly, I do appreciate this insight because now when movies portray men as pervs who constantly think about sex, and I can believe it.

(Why butts are more appealing) “At the risk of sounding crude, guys need something to hold onto.”

As for the booty, the resounding majority vote when it comes to why A is better than T?

 “Well, it is usually found on well rounded (physically) women, therefore, nice butt usually equals nice overall figure. NOT ALWAYS TRUE. Also, breast implants can solve the chest issue, if needed.” I’m really curious to know what makes a butt “good” to men. It is large? Firm? Most men who chose A over T said this exact thing — that a woman has to work for a great butt, and she must have a great rest of her body. Fact: I know women with plump, firm bottoms that look like trolls. I guess the stars have to align…

3. I prefer:

A doctor 38%

A teacher 31%

A journalist 31%

(On doctors) “Shows that she is dedicated to something besides herself, and probably knows how to get things done. A woman who may not need you is pretty attractive.” Fact. Thinking about it, I blew off every guy I’ve dated in the beginning. Must a be a challenge type of thing…?

(On teachers) “I wouldn’t want to date someone with such a hectic schedule as a doctor. I respect the profession but that just sounds like a lot of last minute planning. Journalist women are cool but completely feel like they have EVERYTHING to prove to EVERYONE and end up flaunting themselves to the point of embarrassment. Such vanity. Nice girl to date for a little bit but not for long. A teacher would be a nice, sweet, motherly character. Plus, whenever she wanted to be taboo it would be crazy hot.” Oh, so you know a journalist? Dated one? Do tell. (Rant forthcoming.)

(On journalists) “Shows ambition.”

TANGENT TIME: Apparently if you’re a teacher, you’re more nuturing than anyone else on the planet; a doctorate degree means you’re independent and career-oriented, and journalists are just low-life “snoops” and “too analytical” — based on the answers I received. No disrespect to either professions because I have wonderful, intelligent friends in both fields; kudos to both. But this infuriates me.

I guess I provided the option of journalist because I am an aspiring one. No, blogging doesn’t put me in the same category, unfortunately. But what, I’m a menace to society because I’m curious about how other people feel and think? I want to know what makes the world go round? Mind you, none of you men give two craps about how “sneaky” and “vain” journalists are when you’re reading the work of one or seeing it on broadcast televison  —  you just wouldn’t want to date one…

Newsflash: careers that are depicted in movies are dramatic. Grey’s Anatomy is not how real hospitals operate. Gale Weathers (Scream) is one in a million when it comes to reporters. Yes, I deal with the media quite often and know they can be backstabbing and unfair, however, I admire plenty of women journalists because they dare to ask questions and find answers: Oprah for one, and namely Diane Sawyer.

I also have to throw in there that most people I associate with come to me to help them out, because they’re the ones being too analytical with relationships or whatever. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to tell my girlfriends to stop over-thinking things when it comes to a boy! You can separate work from your career. End of story. But trust, Taryn Brooks doesn’t call me “Nancy Drew” for nothing. Thanks Google for helping me endlessly find any minute detail I may be seeking.

4. What is the single most attractive thing about a woman?

“LOWER BACK DIMPLES.”  This person has to be from my office. The other week we were talking about how I have these. (Long story.) No, not cellulite, a-holes (although we all have it). It’s like… I don’t know the proper term for them. A snake bite? Whatever. They’re two indentations right above your bum, at the small of your back. I don’t know. But now I know someone overheard my conversation… and the entire free world knows I have them. No shame.

“True understanding of herself. There’s a period between 25 and 27 when most women figure out who they are that’s incredibly sexy. It’s not about confidence or fake confidence. It’s more of a self-actualization and acceptance of who they are. As a man, it’s much easier to deal with women who have gone through this because it doesn’t seem like they are playing games or are “crazy” as most guys would say.” Search Menterverntion.com for “Quarter Life Crisis,” then get back to me. Men are 100x more unstable than women at this age. #Bible

“The right type of confidence. A woman is attractive when:
a) she knows what she wants but is willing to compromise when necessary,
b) she speaks her mind but also includes others in the conversation,
c) she is sure of herself but does not take herself too seriously,
d) she knows that she is beautiful but is not consumed by it”

This is a great answer. Kudos to this man. Great thoughts and well-written. Women need to frame it and put it on their wall. I’m half-tempted to Google it and see if it’s some Plato quote or something…

The majority answer as far as personality was sense of humor, with intelligence a close second. As far as looks, the emphasis is on the eyes.

5. Pick One:

5’5” 66%

5’11” 34%

I wonder if I had put 5’7” instead of 5’11”, if men would have voted for that one more? I bet so. I think 5’5” is the average height for a woman. Most people I have dated have joked about my height and their wish would be for me to be a few inches taller. I had a complex about it when I used to be proud of my height. Listen, I am a catch just the way I am. If you want to date someone taller, by all means, please do so. I can be 5’9 1/2” with heels if need be. But that’s all you’re getting from this chick.

I don’t want to be taller. There is something so sexy to me about being my height and having a tall man next to you. Yum.

6. I don’t date girls that:

The number one answer with 89% is SMOKING! YES. Shout out to all my ladies who smoke — on a girl-to-girl level? Not cute. Just stop. You smell, you look like trash, and you smell — real bad. Even smoking recreationally is foul.

Runner up is when a girl is superficial and cares about looks and money. Interesting since in past surveys, you guys talk about how important financial security is for you, not to mention you talk about wanting a “proportional” woman with a nice ass and big breasts.

7. Pick one:

Blondes 31%

Brunettes 69%

Well fine then. Listen, I think hair color is ridiculous. Some brunettes are never meant to be blondes and vice versa. I know that while I would love to be a dark brown chick, I couldn’t do it. Wouldn’t be “me.” I would look heinous. Just like Katy Perry looks hid with her new blonde-orange hair she has going. Woof.

What is it about brunettes? Sex appeal? Are blondes sugary sweet and brunettes buxom and bodacious? What is it about a brunette? Do you take them more seriously? I know that I am not taken seriously by men and women until they see me at work. Then I get some street cred. That or until I rap ‘Forgot About Dre.’ Either/or.

8. Pick:

Good in bed: 51.72%

Good cook: 31.48%

Good at sports: 6.9%

Shocker! Sexual chemistry is a must. For the two idiots who chose ‘good at sports’… athleticism is fleeting. I’m sure you probably think athleticism equates to a great bod and that she will transfer those athletic genes to your children, right? #getagrip

9. My ideal woman is:

She’s a brunette! Natalie Portman had the majority of the write-in votes.

One vote behind? Carrie Underwood. (YEAH GIRL!)

Other notable options? Sharon Osbourne and her “stand-by-your-man-ness”, Claire Huxtable, Jennifer Aniston (#3) Tami Taylor (Friday Night Lights), Julie Bowen and Kate Middleton (#4). Also, some of my guy friends totally gave themselves away with those answers!

Funny thing is that to me, all of these women are gorgeous. Not hot — but stunningly beautiful with personality to boot. So ladies, strive not to be the hot chick on the block! Have some dignity and wit about you and you’re golden.

I actually had someone comment that I was their ideal woman. This person clearly hasn’t met me. Are you crazy?

In all seriousness, I am flattered and a tad embarrassed to be quite honest. Whoever you are — thank you for the kind words. I appreciate it. And thank you for reading the blog.

10. I want a woman who: (some of the best answers)

 “… pushes and challenges me to be something better than what I am alone. Life in my mind is a series of self-improvements, but there is only so far the average person can discipline themselves to be ever-striving for their goals. I want someone who is going to make sure that I achieve what I want out of life the same way as I would do for them.”

“I don’t have to perform around.”

“Loves God, loves others, loves me. Doesn’t get caught up in the world, cherishes the good instead of dwelling on the negative, and actively works against taking anything for granted.”

“Is undeniably herself. A woman that is enhanced with relationships with others but is perfectly happy/content on her own, pursuing her passion. I would love for her to be a 10/10 physically but at the end of the day the definition of a “perfect 10″ is so distorted and subjective that it is a endless endeavor to define it with any finality. An amazing personality can enhance any woman’s appearance ten-fold.”

“Wants me. I want to feel special and know that I am the guy she wants.”

Shout out to the guys who quoted Cake and Blessid Union of Souls (“Short Skirt/Long Jacket” and “Hey Leonardo”). I agree, I want a guy  with a mind like a diamond, I want a guy that knows what’s best. I want a guy with the right allocations, who is fast, and thorough and sharp as a tack. (I’m done.)  

By the way, is it a genetic flaw that none of you guy want to start sentences with capital letters? Did you skip that day in kindergarten? Seriously. I had to edit all these responses to include capitals. 

Thanks to everyone who participated. I know some of you were anticipating the results. By the way, I give men a hard time but I am not a hater. I love men. In fact, I want to marry one some day. Sometimes I get disappointed by you guys but let’s face it, at the end of the day I’m hoping to find a special guy to call my own at some point or another. God knows it won’t be Zac Efron or Justin Timberlake because I’ve professed my love for both of them so much online that if we ever dated, they’d find it and call things of real quick. I should go through an delete all mentions of their names, but that would mean deleting my blog in its entirety.

In the mean time, I will analyze surveys like the snoop I am…

Feel free to leave explanations in the comments section if you have any gonads to admit you took the survey. 🙂

Just for fun, with no relevance at all, here’s Buddy Holly by Weezer and Motivation by Kelly Rowland and Weezy. So sexy.

Don’t dream, it’s over

It’s apparently breakup week here at Mentervention. Since we’ve all been through a breakup or two, can we come together as one and acknowledge what “closure” really is?

It’s just that. Something that goes in between quotes because it’s not really what it claims to be. Oh, Snooki is now an “author.”  Skinny Girl margs are “skinny.”  I was in the bathroom that long for a “phone call.” (You get the point.) Closure is this event we implant in our heads to make things final, but really, it’s just something that prolongs the end.

We’ve all done it. We’ve had a breakup on the phone or even in person and it ends so abruptly that we’re left wanting more. It’s really just sick. Because even though we might want more in a way that makes us feel better, it will inevitably always leave us with more and more hurt. And frankly, the only person in the relationship that wants closure is the one who isn’t initiating the breakup.

Let’s talk this out, shall we?

I’ve had the luxury, if you will, of going through mostly long-distance relationships. The breakups are either over the phone or in person before I’m traveling back home. So it’s kind of nice that I don’t have the convenience running into them at the bar or having a weak moment and inviting them over. However, the closure aspect comes in to play because there’s the constant phone calls going on to rehash everything not once, but twice or maybe even six or seven times, in hopes of getting answers, or perhaps the occasional “mind change.”

Now, I know there are good breakups. The amicable, mature ones. Or even ones that are terribly heartbreaking, but not devastating because there’s a deeper understanding — no foul play, no abruptness, no hurtful circumstances.  Basically, the breakup that’s accepted by both parties.

I’m not talking about those breakups.

Most women won’t admit this (neither will men), but let’s face it: if you’re having a reunion after a break up, you’re secretly wanting the other person to be like, “I love you, I need you, I was such an idiot, you’re the best thing in my life.”

What actually happens at these reunions is the following:

“Hi.”

“Hi.”

“How are you doing?”

Then an arguement of epic proportions breaks out OR Sobfest 2011 commences. How am I doing? I’ve lost 15 pounds because all I want to do is sleep. Thanks for asking?

There will be no comfort from these “closure” conversations, because you will end up more hurt than you did going in. Matter of fact. I mean, unless you’re meeting with this person because they begged to meet with you so they can profess their undying love and admit they were wrong, nothing will be resolved. You broke up. He doesn’t want to be with you. The reason doesn’t even matter at this point — he needs to figure out his career, the timing is off, he isn’t in love with you anymore, he doesn’t want to try hard enough, he’s moving, he found someone else — who cares? He broke things off. Swallow that pill and deal with it.

Another common reason for closure? Apologizing. We’ll want to meet with this person to apologize for things said and done. Listen, the time you need to apologize is when you get to the point where you can apologize, be sincere about it, and not get pissed that the person didn’t respond how you wanted them to.  That’s not going to be right after the breakup.

Let’s say the person comes back, crawling on their hands and knees (and please guys, don’t do that), would you even take them back? Have some dignity for pete’s sake. There’s as book entitled “It’s Called a Breakup because it’s Broken.” I haven’t read it, but what a great title. HELLO! You would still be with this person if all the questions and anxieties in your heart (and his/hers) were at peace, but you’re not, because they’re not. Getting back together with someone immediately after calling it off is like having a boss fire you and then bring you back in for a test run again a week later, only to really fire you a few weeks after that. It’s traumatizing! Not to mention you will have all this pent up anger and sadness, and a unhealthy dose of mad insecurity. That’s why you need time. Time, time, time, time, tiiiiiiiiiiiime! Time. (Just Friends reference, duh.)

I’m not saying couples can’t rekindle the flame, but they rekindle by breaking up correctly: a clean break. End it, wash your hands clean, and if it works out in the future, it works out. Plus, they probably have ample time to think, take care of themselves and their emotions, change what needs to be changed, etc. so they can be the best for each other later on.

If you’re meeting with someone for “closure” in hopes they’ll change their mind… good luck. It’s not going to happen. And if it does, how pathetic. Really. Why beg and plead for someone to be with you? You’re a “helluva guy” (or gal) (Nicki voice) and you deserve to have someone who wants to be with you and thinks you’re a gem! I’m not trying to shove sunshine up your bums but really, have some pride!

That’s the thing about breakups. Sometimes they happen and we have no ammo for the arsenal. It’s like, boom, you’re done, and we’re left with our head spinning. How could it have gone wrong? What is wrong with me? Nothing, my friends. Let me teach you guys the entertainment approach to dating.

You can hear 1,000 “No’s” in LA for every one “maybe.” It’s a cruel, cruel entertainment world. Sometimes, you may not hear anything at all, to be left in the abyss, wondering how you can get noticed. If you get down on yourself, you’ll never make it out here. And that’s how it is for dating. Just because someone tells you “no” and leaves you without any answers doesn’t mean you don’t keep trying in the future. You just keep on. You take those losses and move forward and learn from them to make yourself better. If you keep beating yourself up and subjecting yourself to the hurt of a failed relationship, you won’t bloom into what God has in store for you. I mean, it’s only fitting that I bust out some Katy Perry right here:

“If you only knew what the future holds, after a hurricane comes a rainbow

Maybe the reason why all the doors are closed so you can open one that leads you to the perfect road”

My credibility is probably shot after writing that but really, it’s true. Personally, I constantly remind myself that God knows his plan for my life and that if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be. Whether it’s a job, getting an apartment, or a relationship, it will all work out the way it’s supposed to. And you should too.

I’m mostly speaking to women because we have an emotional pull, while men are more objective. We let our emotions take over our actions and sometimes it’s just not the best idea to meet up and get our “closure” we’ve been seeking. Sometimes it is, but a majority of the time let bygones be bygones.

Listen, love can move mountains. You can break up with someone and they end up being your happily wedded husband or wife a few years later. I’m not above believing in magic, miracles and romance. But during the breakup, don’t bring more hurt to your (and their) heart with your actions, before you ruin any chance of a future.

How’s that for closure?

The break up: being a light to others

Lately, it seems as if a lot of people I know are breaking up. Not sure if it’s something in the water or the cosmic alignment of the stars, but several people close to me are hurting, and it sucks. Both men and women are victims, and it tears my heart apart to see my friends go through it.

When you love your friends, you hurt when they hurt. Just a matter of fact. I absolutely hate hearing the tears and the turmoil because (obviously) I have been through heartbreaking moments myself. Actually, a lot of these recent breakups are so familiar to me, that it makes me cringe to know my friends are enduring something I went through myself, whether it’s someone who feels rejected or the person who is doing the rejecting (for lack of better terms), I feel both sides of the situation.

Then, today at church, our pastor, Kim, was talking about how we the people are God’s salt and His light. I’m going to feature a whole post devoted to the salt portion of her sermon, because it really touched my heart. But being God’s light is pertinent to what so many of you may be going through, or know someone is going through.

She insists that light requires focus. We are able to adjust to the dark. It’s so much easier to go into a dark room from the light than open our eyes into bright light from the dark. When we do go into the light, we have to adapt our eyes and re-focus. We add so much more to the picture we are seeing by adjusting our eyes to the light and we reveal things we might have overlooked before when we shift our focus.

By God’s definition, we are the Light, or in other words, the focus. We can help not only ourselves, but help others to see things they have been missing, or more importantly, overlooked, in certain circumstances or situations.

Growing up, I’ve always asked myself particular questions. Not all the time, but especially when I’m hurting. “Why am I going through this alone? Why don’t people seem to reciprocate what I give to them?” Don’t get me wrong, I don’t do things just to see what I get in return. But sometimes, I feel I give and I don’t get the same back, whether it be in a relationship or my friendships; I always feel like I do things for others that they aren’t willing or can’t to do for me.

This is a blessing and a curse. I’ve been taken advantage of, however (and more importantly), it has allowed me to bless others. Furthermore, when we feel alone, we aren’t. Plenty of other people go through the same things as you, even if they don’t vocalize it. And sometimes, you go through things alone so you can bless others when they go through it.

Being the light means shining brightly and helping others in their time of need, revealing answers to questions or possibly just offering hope and comfort when they can’t seem to find it. I think this is imperative, especially during a break up. Most of us 20-something women (and men — I didn’t forget about you guys!) go through very troubling, heartbreaking breakups at this time in our lives. And with those breakups come questions: “Is this how it’s always going to be? How do you know when you’re in love? Are you always supposed to love the other person more, until you get married? Why is this happening when things were relatively good in our relationship? Why is God removing this person from my life?”

With these questions, we strive to find answers, none of which will be revealed without lots and lots of time. Time is a friend, so is hope and faith. But, as a friend, we are obligated to be a source of light and comfort to those who are confused, especially when most of us have been through something similar.

And that’s the funny thing. We go through these trails and are like, “WHY me? Why is nobody else experiencing this hurt? Why am I the only one?” We need to confide in one another and ask for help and comfort when we need it. At the same rate, we need to reach out to our brothers and sisters even if they don’t ask for help. They might be going through a dark period and we not even know it, and reaching out could significantly change their mood, their outlook and their hope.

So, for all of you heartbroken souls out there, there will be brighter days, even if you can’t see them yet. And, if I can offer you anything, it’s this. I wrote this to a friend in need and I’ve edited as much as possible to keep their anonymity, but after they told me they forwarded it to a friend, I figured it might help a few of you out there too. Granted, everyone has different circumstances to a break up, but most of the themes are universal: people love you, don’t be blind to what’s really going on, love is not anxiety, and nothing is without a careful purpose.

I think this note is relatable to most everyone, and I hope you’ll fill in the blanks and make it your own, perhaps pass it on  to a friend, or at least send them the link to the site:

Dearest Friend,

Everyone who loves you would agree that you deserve better and you WILL find better! Long story short: we all liked ______, but _____ doesn’t make you. _______ was a component of your life that we enjoyed seeing in public, didn’t have to deal with in private, and is disposable to us. We’re in the long haul with you, not ______!

_______ can’t give you what you need. My only advice is not to dwell on “what ifs” and think about all the good times, but rather reflect on how ______ treated you in the present. I think we tend to think “but they were so great!” and not consider how we’re being treated in the now, which is what really matters. But I think you know in your heart that things were going south and that while you tried to fight the good fight, ______ wasn’t pulling their end of the bargain. It takes two!

You will find all the things you loved in ________ in someone else — with things that _______ didn’t have. Otherwise, _______ will pull themselves together and be the person you need in your life.

At this point, you don’t need to prove anything to them. They need to be the one to prove to you how important you are to them. Their actions will always be louder than words. Don’t dwell and think, “But what if they don’t know that I love them? Or they don’t think I want them to call?” If they want to be with you, they need to and will be the one to take the initiative. They will call. They will do whatever it takes… it’s not up to you to piece it back together.

Talk about it, let out all the sadness and anger, but then stop. If you keep letting it circulate out of your mouth, you’ll keep thinking about it more and more internally, which isn’t helpful to the process of moving on.

I LOVE YOU! You need to let your light shine, as God has given you gifts that he wants you to share with the world. When the timing is right, He’ll place a person in your life who compliments you completely — who is equally yolked. ________’s  great, but I don’t think they’re your equal part of the yolk, either.

As a constant reminder, just remember that God doesn’t take away things on accident. He’s known this was going to happen since you were an embryo. Crazy right? But I always find comfort in that, knowing he has a divine plan and that this is just part of it. If he wanted you to be with ________, it would be easy, correct? It would have been more peaceful in your heart had you two needed to work out (at this time). And maybe God had been whispering in your ear a few times to help you initiate the breakup (the feeling of not being wanted), and then left the lingering feeling in your heart for a reason. Just remember that the person you are supposed to be with makes you feel good, more than wonderful, as if you are the only priority they have… nothing can come between that.

Just remember: if it’s meant to be, it will be, no matter the circumstance. If it’s not, it’s not God’s will. (His will is always the best, remember?)

Anyway, I could keep going but I’m sure your overwhelmed and just need some time to think. So I leave you with these:

“God sometimes removes a person from your life for your protection. Don’t run after them.” Rick Warren

“Do not fear. Look beyond what’s dying to what’s being born.” Marianne Williamson

“When people can walk away from you, let them walk. Your destiny is never tied to anyone that left.” TD Jakes

Hope this helps someone. Love you guys, thanks for reading.

Kirbie

Dating vs. Waiting

"Screw you for being so perfect and RUINING MY LIFE!!!"
When it comes to dating, I wouldn’t call myself a Carrie Bradshaw by any means. (And praise baby Jesus.  That hoe rubs me the wrong way. A see-through leotard on the streets of New York? Cheating on Aiden? Really, Carrie? REALLY? Oh cripe. I’m totally turning into that person who is too emotionally invested in syndication television.) But I’ve had my fair share of awkward encounters of the dating kind, and a few top-notch relationships to balance it out. (Not to mention absolutely horrible relationships that ended in complete and utter humiliation, but I won’t go into that load of crap.)

The past couple of days, I’ve had convos with two different people — one man, one woman — both one-on-one, about dating.

Profiles on both: they’re both sane, have a good head on their shoulders, the like. AKA not chemically imbalanced or certifiably off their rocker. I’ve known the girl about eight months now, the boy around a year, but met him for the first time last Wednesday (long story). They’re both considered catches, and both are single.

The boy

We both got to talking about dating in our respective towns. I have to admit that, having met him for the first time, my guard was up and I felt like I was holding back a tad, just because of the first impression factor (I’ll blog about that later). I notice this all the time about myself — if I care about how someone perceives me, I don’t really let me be myself. If I don’t give a rip, I can act how I want and it ends up being more natural. (I think we all do this.) However, he made a great point as I was commenting about the crazies here in LA.

“Dating is easy, but dating a quality person is not.”

Simple but true, right? We all know this. I could argue how hard it is to date in LA, but matter of factly, I could solidify two dates a weekend if I had no standards in my life. Most women could in this town. Most women on planet Earth could.

But the question is this: would you want to?

Would you want to go on dates with someone, knowing well ahead of time they wouldn’t be worth it? If you weren’t attracted to them? If they had something missing — and you knew it right off the bat?

“How do you know they’re not worth it if you haven’t been out with them?”

Well, we all have a list of “things” that make someone attractive to us. For me, nice teeth and height are a major factor. I know you’re not supposed to judge a person on looks, but it’s an undeniable fact that I’m attracted to men who are really tall. I don’t think that’s a bad thing, because having physical attraction is a substantial part of dating and a relationships. It’s the other 50% to the 50% of chemistry. You either have it or you don’t. And you can bet I’m not kissing someone with foul teeth. Sorry, but I know a majority of people wouldn’t either. Hit up the dentist for a cleaning, throw som veneers on that shiz if they’re wonky, and call it a day. To clarify, I’m not saying “YOU MUST HAVE STRAIGHT TEETH!” I don’t even have (perfectly) straight teeth. I’m just asking for a little oral hygeine, por favor.

Back to the point. I find that women these days go on dates with several men, but nothing fruitful is coming of any of the dates. They’re just that: one date on a calendar of 365. A nice meal with some conversation (good or bad), and then it’s back to the grind the next day to find someone else. Perhaps these dates are just to find some much-needed self confidence. Maybe they’re just for the intimacy factor. Who knows. But are they worth it?

Most first dates can be categorized as: a complete snoozefest, awkward, creepy… even infuriating. But there has to be some allure to being a Social Datalite, right? Right??

"Maybe if I close my eyes... he'll think I'm dead..."

The Girl

I discussed this topic with my girlfriend at work. She confided that many of her friends were dating and dating and dating, but that they weren’t dating quality people. The girls would pick up and head out the moment the date was over, with no desire to see the person again. Free meal and they’re done. (Which frankly, in LA, is cost-effective.)

“When I date someone, I’m not looking for a good time. I mean, I am, but I’m not just looking for a fling. I’m looking for someone who might have attributes that would lead to a future.”

Ah, the missing ingredient. This is why dating is difficult for a person such as myself, and, as I presume, a majority of other woman as well. We all know what we want, and most of us want something significant and worthwhile, otherwise it’s a waste of time. Why date a nice guy who is missing several attributes you need in a relationship, knowing these missing things are dealbreakers, when you could find someone else who has all those things if you waited a little longer?

At the same rate, why not fill up the time you have in between seeking out a real catch, with someone you enjoy being around… just not necessarily is Mr. Right? Mr. Right Now can’t be that bad, can he? Oh life. Such questions we are posed with.

When it comes down to it, I’m really too picky. I need the stars to align and a real connection to get me out of my gym-work-dinner-write-bed routine. Yes. I have turned down social outings and dates to get my fitness on and blog. (Pathetic? Whatever. I have plenty of other attributes I should be considerably more ashamed of.) Even when things are new and fresh and slightly awkward (first dates can be the worst), I need comfort, and to see the big picture… at some point.

My big dating story is circa 2005. I dated a guy at the end of high school. Scratch that: I dated three. It was pretty liberating, not gonna lie. I enjoyed being with all three of them, but here’s how it all went down:

Number 1 was an ex that was consisently on and off. Number 2 was a guy I met a a bonfire once and then chatted up on AIM (God help me) until he got home for the summer. Number 3 was a friend, who I had actually dated in middle school for like… two months.

Number 1 was an a-hole, and the only reason he actually gave a crap about what I was doing at that point was because he realized that I actually didn’t give a crap about him at that time. I went from pitiful, heartbroken ex-girlfriend to insanely attractive ex-girlfriend merely because I didn’t reach out to him at all. Then, miraculously, it’s all coming up roses and candy bars, with him planning extravagant vacation plans to boot. Please note that it was one of those situations where we weren’t together, so we don’t give me the “cheaters” chat.

Number 2 was a total babe and actually terribly mean at times, before we started dating. I must admit that after our initial date, which we went on with two mutal friends, I pretty much washed my hands clean of him. But then he convinced me to try again with a one-on-one, and let’s just say I was smitten (this sounds too much like an episode of The Bachelorette). The kid wore a pink polo to pick me up because I had told him in passing I thought it was cute, brought me a rose, the whole nine yards — it was just fantastic. And it was totally that Notebook-esque romance, where we had such strong feelings but also fought to death because we were so stubborn.

Number 3. Hilarious, so much fun to be around, friends with all my friends… it was hard not to have these amazing feelings for the guy. However, when there isn’t a spark, there isn’t a spark. In the end, he turned out to be just a friend. It was sad. But he is still one of my dearest friends. (Keegs!!!!)

The point of divulging my player-esque mentality back in high school is that I didn’t have the comfort level with Number 1 & Number 3 as I did with Number 2. And at times, I thought we had the “big picture” component (ah, high school blind love), but we obviously didn’t. Obviously. Because I’m more solo than a red plastic cup right now, and have since dated people who I thought had the “big picture” component as well. (Another keyword: thought. When you know, you know, apparently…)

So why date a bunch of measely people in the mean time? I can’t hop on board with the dating game. I’ve accepted one date in Los Angeles and it was less than fulfilling, to say the least. I guess dating has its pros: finding out what you do and don’t want, feeling wanted, meeting new people. But the cons, including awkward conversation and forced laughter, are enough to make me cold and unbothered to go out again.

Plus, isn’t it so much more special when you go on a date with someone you truly start to like and care for? Simliar to long-distance, you appreciate the really relaxed, romantic, “easy” (not read: “loose”, but perfect, rather) dates when you have them every once in awhile, instead of running yourself through the power-dating mill and possibly subjecting yourself to sitting in a car in silence — or worse, having to figure out how to dodge the unwanted kiss at the end of the night. (I’m a genius at this if you need tips.)

But don’t take it from me. I want to know: should we all be dating or waiting? Why? Prove your case. Heck, maybe eHarmony is calling my name? (Doubtful.)

Just for kicks, I had never seen this pic of Carrie & Big — they both look phenomenal, compared to their normal haggardness. (PSA not to smoke!)

Whoroscopic Evidence

Today’s post is really a Womentervention.

Ladies, why do we try to get past other women?

We’re all on to each other. We are each other, remember?  And men, when our intuition is bad about another woman, it’s not us being some psycho, jealous control freak. We have reasons because, like I said before, we are women. We know what drives other females; what their true motives are.

Yeah, I admit it. I’ve had some drama in my day. But now as I approach my mid-20s, all I can think about how desperately I try to avoid drama like the plague. I believe life has you do stupid crap in your past so that when you get to be an adult, you can easily smell the rats when they appear to be puppies: playful, fluffy, cute, harmless, yet really dirty scavengers looking to take what they can get, from whoever they can get it from.

The funniest thing to me is that when a girl tries to pull a fast one on me. I know almost immediately what’s up. It’s like God gave me whore-dar or something. Like, aw, I know she’s trying to keep the threat (moi) in close vicinity, so then when the crap (she will inevitably pull) goes down, she can be like, “But you’re my friend!” so it won’t sting as bad. However, most women know that when another woman tries excessively butter us up, kiss our ane, or for obtain our approval that really, she’s trying to get on our  “good side” because she’s about to do something sneaky (shitty?) — or has already done the dirty deed.

It all is just a matter of figuring out what she intends to do (have done), and when.

Let’s all have a come to Jesus right now: ladies, it’s not a good look when you pat another woman on the back, only to kick her down the stairs and she turns around to leave. It’s just juvenile. It reminds me of high school, when girls would get super close to me to try and steal my boyfriend, or the guy I was crushing on. It wasn’t so much to hurt me, as it was to prove to themselves they could get something they didn’t really even want in the first place. It was just a matter of obtaining it and moving on, and making sure other women couldn’t have it. Insecurity at its finest!

Writing that whole last paragraph was sickening. Barf. Who wants to be around that person, let alone BE that person? It’s so 2000 and late, honey. Actually, if we’re going based real time, it’s sooo 1900 and late.

Just do yourself a favor and don’t try to scam other women. We all know what’s going on. And in the end, you won’t be the one with any sort of prize (or pride); you’ll have to spend your time figuring out how to wash your hands clean of all the filth your life has been covered in. Yuck.

Ladies, leave your scams at home. Fellas, listen to us when we say a woman’s mind is blown.

The Boogie Man

Ladies, we’ve all heard of him, or worse, met him. Guys, you know who I’m referring to. I’m not talking about the cryptic monster that hides under our bed and in our closet at night – I’m talking about that one guy who, under normal circumstances, is suave, charming and fun to be around… and has a giant booger in his nose.

Is there anything that’s more of a turnoff? Especially on a date? (Please don’t answer that. I fear what responses I may solicit.) As a man, there are certain obligations one has to fulfill: provide for the family, keep their (your) pants zipped, and remove any residue from their (your) nose.

It’s really not that hard to look in the mirror and see if there are any surprises left after you blow, pick, or tickle your snout (and let’s be frank: some men have some grotesque ways of removing waste from their schnoz).  A majority of us ladies seem to grasp the concept, so what gives with the men?

Ladies, imagine locking eyes with a tall, handsome man from across the room, and as luck would have it, he B-lines to your table to chat you up and possibly get your digits. As he approaches, you tilt your head up to flash him a smile, only to shutter in sheer TERROR as you notice the green thing trying to make a run for it out of his nostril.

Yep, it’s a dealbreaker. Perhaps not to be too harsh, we should initiate a three strike rule until they get the hint (or don’t). But if a man wants to get serious with this girl, there better be NADA hanging out of his nose.

I only bring this up because this is a growing epidemic. I have seen more men with nasty crap in their nose than humanly possible. It’s unreal. No, I’m not trying to make people feel insecure around me, but honestly… it’s an issue that needs to be addressed. 

Grooming is going to be a vital part of the dating process. Carry around a pack of Q-tips and a compact for all I care. Because what’s worse: having a boogie for everyone to stare at? Or having the person you’re trying to impress confess that you have a massive piece of gold hanging out? Also, please forgive that I have to use the word “boogie” to describe the offensive matter, but it’s less grotesque than the other words I could use…

As a woman, I don’t want to kiss a guy if I see him doing anything close to picking his nose, let alone see what he should be picking (removing), dangling by a nose-thread. I’m gagging just thinking of it.

I need a man to blow me away with his personality and wit, not what’s hiding in his nose. And when someone refers to my guy as the “boogie man,” I pray to sweet baby Jesus hope they’re referring to his mad dancing skills, not his bedazzled beak.

So guys, take a minute in the morning after your shower to lightly tilt your chin up and inspect the terrority. Make sure nothing is cluttering up the space. In fact, if you feel it necessary, cut those pesky nosehairs. Wipe the blood off your jawline from that nasty razor cut. Then give yourself a wink and admit that you look amazing.

Ladies want it, men need it.