Some dating advice is just bad news. Let me break it down for you.
While standing in line at Target I happened upon a magazine with my boy Drake on the cover. And by 'my boy' I mean he's a cool cat that I find interesting. I am not, in fact, claiming we are on a first name basis. But I digest. Right below his mug was an article headline that read "3 Ways to Make Her Want You Back!".
I cringed. I threw-up in my mouth. And then I remembered that advice like this is good because it gives me fodder to write about just how bad such advice really is. And on the island of bad relationship or dating advice, it's not alone. For instance.
1. Any advice in the neighborhood of 'Things You Can Do To Avoid Being Cheated On'. Stop it. We should not have to do things to ensure we are not cheated on. I could cut and skewer this thirty sex different ways but I will stick with the three biggest problems with this advice.
It implies that if you don't do these 'things' than you're partially to blame for being cheated on.
It implies that you should even be thinking about the possibility that your partner could be cheating on you. Who wants that cloud hanging over them?
It implies that you should be active in your assurance that your partner does not cheat on you. Should you really have to take steps to avoid this?
2. Any advice about how to make someone love you or miss you. Let's step back for a second and think about the message within this advice. If you want to make someone love you or miss you, you must also ask yourself why they don't love you or miss you naturally. If someone doesn't love or miss you naturally, do you really want to do things to make them? I didn't think so.
3. Any advice that talks about what to order and how to eat on a date. Really? We're telling people to order this and not that because it may negatively alter the view of the person that they go on the date with?
I have no interest in going on a date with someone that will let my eating habits skew their view of my potential as a love interest. I'll concede that we ought not eat with our mouths open or order 26 martinis but other than that....
4. Any advice around how long you should wait to call someone after going on a date with them. It is usually followed by some rhetoric about how you could appear desperate or 'too into them' if you call them too soon after a date. How about calling them whenever you want to and if they think it's desperate or clingy, they can pound sand?
5. Any advice that tells people to play hard to get. In a nutshell, we're telling people to play games and make the other person chase. How about being yourself? How about not making them guess whether you like them because of fear that you may appear 'too attainable'.
What grinds my gears about most of this advice is the lack of authenticity it promotes. We are who we are and when we meet someone and are in a relationship with that person, being anyone other than our authentic self is leading them on while also disrespecting who we are, at the core.
As well, we claim that we hate playing games and yet advice like this, from so-called dating coaches, promotes said game playing.
There is a Dating Game and it was hosted by the irreplaceable Chuck Woolery. If you can resurrect that show and get on it as a contestant, good on you. Otherwise, don't make dating or relationships a game.