Does Texting Lead To Sex Sooner

This article originally appeared on WorldLifestyle.com.

 

We asked best-selling author and ‘Tough Love’ host Steve Ward why texting is a game-changer when it comes to dating.  This is his explanation of why texting may lead to intimacy sooner than you think:

Texting has taken on an ominous role when it comes to communicating in relationships. Believe it or not though, research suggests it has actually peaked! Not because we’ve grown tired of texting. It’s because people are craving better forms. Instant messaging apps like WhatsApp and SnapChat are taking over and since this mode of communication is here to stay I thought I’d share some best practices with you to avoid dating disasters.

For some people texting allows them to push the envelope because they’re able to say things over text that they might not otherwise be comfortable saying in person. For many people of these people it’s easier to express their thoughts and feelings over text than it is face-to-face.

Texting is an accelerant to emotional and physical intimacy.  When you express your thoughts, feelings and desires over text it actually strengthens the connection between two people just as it would if it were expressed verbally. Mind sharing makes people more comfortable with each other, but it can also make people uncomfortable with each other as well. Studies show, however, that couples who frequently text each other are more likely to jump into bed than those who only use text when necessary.

Texting can be fine and fun, but you might want to consider these few rules of engagement first:

1.    Be as careful about who you sext as you are about who you sleep with. Anyone can take a screenshot and attachments can be saved, altered and shared with or without your permission.

2.    Only sext with protection. If you do feel the need to send a scandalous photo use an ephemeral messaging app that disposes of it automatically.

3.    Address people by their name so they don’t think you’re mass texting.

4.    Never send more than three texts in a row before getting a response.

5.    Don’t text and expect. If you find yourself waiting for a response you will grow anxious and aggravated very quickly.

Texting is flirty and fun but it does not substitute a real face-to-face conversation. Use it sparingly.

Ward will soon launch Love Lab, an agnostic mobile dating app providing credible verification for all dating connections.  According to Ward, the app will be the Swiss army knife for your love life…the peephole to your dating world…the Nev Schulman for your catfishes, Love Lab is the security you need when looking for love.
To receive personal coaching or matchmaking from Steve Ward and his staff please visit http://mastermatchmakers.com/getstarted.

When To Ask or Say If You Have or Want Children

I coach a lot of women who are intelligent, beautiful, successful and childless. Most of them want a child really, REALLY bad. Some want a child more than they want a partner. A few just never really saw themselves as mothers and opted out of parenting. But I wouldn’t know where to begin telling stories of women who have been lead on, lied to or disenchanted to find out that the man they had been secretly hoping would father them a child, won’t.

According to PEW, “Nearly one-in-five American women ends her childbearing years without having borne a child, compared with one-in-ten in the 1970s.” This trend toward childlessness has doubled in one lifetime.

To explain this PEW cites a 2008 study titled, “The Future of American Fertility” conducted by the National Bureau of Economic Research and states, “that social pressure to bear children appears to have diminished for women and that today the decision to have a child is seen as an individual choice.” They continue their explanation by saying, “Improved job opportunities and contraceptive methods help create alternatives for women who choose not to have children.” So if I understand that correctly, they’re saying that women have always felt pressure to have children, but the pressure is diminishing. Additionally, if I’m not mistaken, they’re saying that the diminishing gender gap in terms of income, employment and education is also contributing to this. That’s an odd derivation to make when the same PEW research concludes that, “While childlessness has risen for all racial and ethnic groups, and most education levels, it has fallen over the past decade for women with advanced degrees.” Without citing any particular study, I’m pretty sure it’s a forgone conclusion that advanced degrees usually yield “improved job opportunities”.

Many of my childless female clients have taken steps to preserve their eggs and prolong the possibility of parenting a child. Some have started to initiate the fertilization process without a partner to parent the child with. However, not all of my clients are “wealthy” or privileged enough to afford to freeze their eggs, hire a surrogate, try invetro, or even adopt. For the women who can’t afford a procedure, and those who don’t welcome the responsibility of parenting a child of their own, on their own, it is imperative to discuss their imminent desire to find a mate. For the women brave enough to bring a child into the world themselves, or to take on the responsibility of raising an orphan alone, it is equally as imperative to let someone know those wheels are in motion or that ship has sailed. For the single moms who never asked to do it themselves and for the childless women who just don’t have the desire to be a mother, the advice is still the same. Talk about it. This is true for men as well.

There are many topics you want to avoid early on in dating. Children are not one of them. What’s the point of even exploring the chemistry if you’re not on the same page here? You’re saving both yourself and the other person a lot of time, trouble, regret and disappointment if you get this topic out in the open early on. How? Just like you would any sensitive subject. Carefully.

Asking about someone’s family while you’re on a date is to be expected. It’s a fairly safe zone just as long as their family is no more dysfunctional than the next. Open with a simple, but direct question. “So are you close with your parents?” A great follow up is, “How about the rest of your family? Brothers? Sisters? Nieces or Nephews?” If they haven’t brought up having kids of their own you can nonchalantly ask, “So are you the type that likes to give the kids back at the end of the day or do you enjoy (the idea) of raising your own?”

Just remember that its necessary to talk about this early and honestly. Avoid delay, avoid dismay.

If you’d like guaranteed matches, and/or my personal coaching, support, direction and guidance please complete our Getting Started Form, HERE.

To read the PEW research, please click HERE.

How Facebook Can Make You Less Likable

The scientific community has been conducting extensive research lately into the effects that social networks have on our health and psychology. Facebook just revealed their own secret study where they determined that your mood can be altered for days based on the posts you see from others. They call this “emotional contagion” and it may indicate why someone’s Facebook status might make you sick.

According to research by Lydia Emery and her colleagues at Haverford College, couples that post the most “highly disclosing” status updates are the least likeable says Gwendolyn Seidman, Ph.D., an associate professor of psychology at Albright College, who studies relationships and cyberpsychology. She concurs with the study in a blog for Psychology Today but also adds that “in general, showing off your relationship on Facebook is a habit that happier couples are more likely to engage in.” So where do you draw the line?

Seideman writes that people whose Facebook profiles indicate they are coupled, who have profile pictures of them and their significant others, and post couple photos and affectionate comments on their own and their partner’s timeline, are in fact the happiest and most satisfied couples online. However, she has also concluded through a study of her own that disclosing your most intimate thoughts on Facebook makes you less likable. Clearly there is a fine line between seeming satisfied, “trying too hard” and “showing off”.

My advice for all the happy couples on Facebook is to maintain a healthy balance between your overtures online and your otherwise ordinary activity. What you say in your status update to your significant other could sicken someone who had no intentions of seeing it. I think its perfectly fine to celebrate your relationship with pictures, posts and updates that others might like to see but I suggest saving the most intimate of sayings for just yourselves.

If you’d like my personal support, direction or guidance, or that of our other matchmakers, coaches and coordinators complete our Getting Started Form and someone will get back to you soon.

To read the original article for Psychology Today, click HERE.

Why Are Women Leaving Their Amazing Husbands

I am engaged to marry an incredible woman. She is strong, independent, and self-assured. She brings out the best in me. As I have been morphing into the future husband I know I can be, I have often stopped and marveled at how different I am from the man I was just two years ago. Moments ago, while we were enjoying our Sunday morning political talk shows, sipping coffee in bed and reminiscing about the night before, I came across this amazing blog in the Huffington Post, “Why Great Husbands Are Being Abandoned”.

Before I pontificate, I want to celebrate the insight and prowess of the HP contributor and applaud her for espousing her thoughts and feelings on the subject. In short, this is a consequence of the feminist movement – and I don’t think it is either a good, or intended one.

As women have been liberated from the household and released into the “man’s world” that they have fought so hard for a place in, they somehow got it into their heads that its their turn to have their cake and eat it too. This new breed of woman who kicks ass and takes names with the best of men around still expects to come home to the “hearth” and have her man be “the man”.

As a dating coach and matchmaker I am constantly telling women (and men) how important it is to have gender roles in relationships. I try to explain that even if you can do it all on your own you have to make your man feel both wanted, and needed. If she expects him to be secure with their relationship he has to feel like she can’t do it all on her own. She can’t do it…without him. And as one of these “androgynous” men I understand that so it goes inversely.

But even as the new world order of women out there continue to earn degrees, land great jobs, start businesses and dominate wherever they roam, they somehow determined that their “ideal match” is their equal. They decided that they want to be with a tall, good looking, well educated, successful, sexy man of the same age. They want this man to only have eyes for them, and to be completely enamored by them. What they want is almost entirely impossible. Those men that I just described who are still single are a rare, rare commodity these days. And they’re usually single because they’re incapable of being in a committed relationship. They are typically looking to date women considerably younger than them with little to no baggage. They want the smart, sophisticated, sexy woman who hasn’t reached their level yet. They want that “hierarchal connection” that this contributor refers to.

So in my opinion, I think these type A women of the world need a reality check and should start looking for the qualities that matter most in a match. They should look for a man who is “respectful, quality, caring, devoted, cherishing, authentic, and supportive” instead of the macho man with a big bank account and even bigger ego. My advice to these women of the world who are winning the wage war is simply this. Who cares if he doesn’t earn as much as you? He doesn’t need to be lighting the world on fire if you’re already doing it for him. He needs to be a partner that you can respect and trust and you need to be the same.

To read the article on Huffington Post, click HERE.

To receive your own personal support, direction and guidance complete our inquiry form HERE.

Match Challenges Eharmony Claims

CBS News is reporting that Match.com has called bullshit on Eharmony.com and enlisted the support of the NAD (National Advertising Division), to publicly condemn them for it. The independent body that looks into advertising claims as part of the industry’s self-regulation has agreed.

As a result, Eharmony has issued a statement saying that they will not refer to its claims they have the “most marriages,” “most satisfied marriages” and “most enduring marriages” than any other dating site as “independent” considering that the two individuals who conducted the study used to work for Eharmony.

The NAD, which is operated by the Council of Better Business Bureaus, determined that the so-called “independent” study was flawed in several ways and could not account for the marriages that have occurred through the host of niche sites owned by Match, a division of IAC.

In our experience as professional matchmakers and personal coaches we have heard tremendous success stories from people who have met through dating sites. However, we have heard many, MANY more horror stories. At Master Matchmakers® we interview and scrutinize everyone we represent and qualify individuals to be matched on a case-by-case basis. Soon we will be launching a mobile product that allows you to prove you’re legit, as well as whoever you meet on your own.

To read the CBS News report click HERE.

To inquire about guaranteed matchmaking and personal coaching, please complete our Get Started Form.

Proof That Soul Mates Don’t Exist

According to a recent study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology scientists concluded through a series of experiments that:

• Framing love as perfect unity can hurt relationship satisfaction.

• It hurts relationship satisfaction only in conflicts, not in celebrations.

• This content dependency supports metaphorical framing, not metaphorical transfer.

• Metaphorical framing effects are limited to targets to which frames are applicable.

What does that mean in laymen’s terms? It means that when you fight, and you’re the kind of person who considers someone your “soul mate”, your relationship satisfaction will be negatively impacted much more than if you simply had an idealistic frame of your partnership – you’re two individuals on a parallel path. This makes perfect sense. Why?

If you truly believe in the Myth of Romantic Love you will have a greater crisis of confidence and question your faith whenever a fight occurs. When you frame your partnership more realistically and fight, you’ll simply wonder whether or not this person is right for you. So what are we to do?

A study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology concluded, “that satisfaction is associated with idealistic, rather than realistic, perceptions of one’s partner”. In other words, it is imperative to focus on the positive and train yourself to idealize your partner. You must intentionally marginalize their shortcomings. But that doesn’t mean you should turn a blind eye to obvious issues. In this study researchers concluded that people who idealized their spouses when they married (focused primarily on their good qualities) were more likely to still be happy with their partner years later.

In my opinion these two studies suggest how important it is to maintain positivity, optimism and hope. However, considering the relationship preordained can detrimental. Balance your expectations and desires carefully or beware of the consequences.

SBW

If you’d like personal support, direction and guidance and the opportunity to meet your match, complete our Getting Started Form.

To read the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology study please click HERE.

To read the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology study please click HERE.

To read about The Myth of Romantic Love please click HERE.

The Number One Sign Its Time To End Your Relationship

When I came across this article on LifeHacks that suggested 14 signs that it might be time to end your relationship, I gave each one a lot of careful consideration. As a matchmaker and relationship expert I always ask my clients to look in the mirror first before looking to blame anyone else in sight. 

14. You don’t want the same things in your futures.
13. Nothing you do makes your significant other happy.

12. You constantly feel insecure.
11. You’ve been setting deadlines for your relationship to get better by, and they keep passing.
10. You fight all the time.
9. You cry all the time.
8. Your relationship is negatively impacting other areas of your life.
7. You never see each other.
6. You are flirting with someone else.
5. You don’t trust them.
4. You’re living on a future idea.
3. You find yourself lying.
2. You consistently say, “when X happens, everything will be fine.” In each and all of these situations I would ask you again to look in the mirror and see what your share of the responsibility is. However, when you see the number one sign, it’s time to go!
1. You find you have nothing nice to say about your partner, when you talk about her/ him to your friends or family. 

5 Tips to Online and Mobile Dating Apps

My career in matchmaking and dating predates social media. I was bringing love into peoples’ lives before MySpace was a household name and before Zuckerberg launched Facebook. Online dating however, has been around since the chat room. I can remember as far back as 1993 when AOL personals replaced the classified ads that lonely hearts would place in the back of their regional magazine.

Although digital dating has evolved in the last twenty years, many of the perils and pitfalls remain the same. Here are some tips to make sure you’re not wasting your time online or setting yourself up for disappointment in person.


Speak before you meet.
 When you connect with someone through a nifty hookup app like Tinder or a dense online matchmaking site like Eharmony, you must make sure you have some sort of connection before bothering to meet in person. After messaging until your heart’s content, arrange to speak to one another before setting up a date. In today’s day and age, you have nothing to lose by giving your number out to someone you met online.

Do your homework. 
When you get the chance to speak with someone you met online, go on a fact-finding mission before you get together in person. You should know where they grew up, where they went to high school, when they graduated, where they attended college (if applicable) and where they now work before you plan to meet. If you get a home address and date of birth you can actually perform your own criminal background check of them online. This usually isn’t necessary if you have references so find out if you know any of the same people before you become friends on Facebook.

Meet in broad daylight. 
Whenever you get together with someone in person for the first time, and you’ve already met online, you never really know what you’re going to get. That’s why I always suggest meeting during the day and allotting only an hour or so of time. If its known in advance that you’d like to get together just to get acquainted and you end the meeting on a high note, both of you will have something to look forward to when you go on an actual date. If it’s a mismatch however, you aren’t trapped in dire straits.

Keep the texting to a minimum. 
Text messaging is asynchronous. When you get into the habit of texting someone too soon you may find yourself anxiously awaiting acknowledgement, engagement or a response. Although many people nowadays loathe the telephone conversation I still suggest placing a phone call and leaving a voicemail at least to express your gratitude, interest, or desire to see someone. Text messaging should only be used to convey messages you do not expect the receiver to reply to.

Always be gracious. 
Whether this mystery match turns out to be good, bad, or ugly, the number one thing you can do is be as gracious as possible. Word of mouth is now viral thanks to social media. And there are even apps now designed to warn women about scandalous men online. Lulu and DontDateHimGirl are just a couple products that come to mind. Your hope should be that afterwards this person you met would have something positive to say on your behalf.

Use common sense, follow this simple advice, and you may avoid a lot of wasted time and disappointment with dating online. If you’d rather save yourself the trouble, and spare yourself surprises, you could always hire my team and I to do the work for you. Just complete our ‘Getting Started’ form to be contacted.

 

Marijuana and Matchmaking

I’m currently coaching two separate women with the same problem. One lives in Denver, CO. The other lives in Seattle, WA. As they’re both out and about looking to meet their match, they keep running into the same thing…“potheads”. With marijuana recreationally legal in both states the deal-breaking question, “do you smoke” now has an almost instantly canned response…”smoke what?” I ask my clients in states where marijuana is recreationally legal if they’re open to dating cigarette smokers and/or marijuana users and I’m often amazed at the response.

Some objectors I’ve found (mostly those over 35) think marijuana is as dangerous as it was made out to be in the 1936 propaganda film, “Reefer Madness”, where audiences are led to believe that smoking pot can lead to catastrophic consequences like suicide, rape, manslaughter, etc.

Cannabis is now controlled and regulated either medicinally or recreationally in 21 states (including DC).  And, it is more socially acceptable than ever. According to a recent survey by Gallup, “support for legalization (of marijuana) is at 62 percent among adults under 30, 56 percent among those aged 30 to 49, 49 percent among those aged 50 to 64, but only 31 percent among those over 65.”

Marijuana is far less dangerous than alcohol, cigarettes and many pharmaceutical drugs. It’s incontrovertible. It is far less addictive and much less harmful to your health than other regulated substances bought and sold over the counter. Research has shown the overall addiction potential for cannabis to be less than what it is for caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, cocaine or heroin.

There are little to no known cases of death by marijuana overdose either, nor are there any widely accepted links to cancer, heart disease, liver disease, etc.  Give someone a bottle of aspirin though, and they can easily end their life.

Nowadays marijuana can be ingested in the form of “edibles” (cookies, brownies, lollypops, etc.) made with THC-based oils. THC stands for Tetrahydrocannabinol, the main psychoactive element of marijuana. You don’t even have to smoke it to feel the effects anymore.  Many marijuana users “vaporize” it and are inhaling THC-laced water vapor instead of actual smoke.

Is marijuana a “gateway drug”? When people gain access to one controlled substance and experience no perceived consequences it is logical they would expect to have a similar experience with other controlled substances. Individuals inclined to try one thing are most likely inclined to try others.

Ultimately whether you discriminate romantically based on creed, culture, lifestyle, health, habits, religion or way of life is up to you, but don’t let it create a schism as long as no crimes are being committed and there’s no imposition on you.

 

Sex On The First Date

There have been countless surveys and studies published recently that are supposed to provide insights into love, dating and relationship in the digital age. Recently, famed love doctor Helen Fisher concluded that one out of five singles believe it’s either “somewhat appropriate” or “totally appropriate” to have sex on a first date. You may be one of those four-out-of-five today, but that one-out-of-five tomorrow. The same study concluded that 31% of singles say they have developed a relationship from what they thought was just going to be a one-night stand. So it isn’t always a bust.

Jumping into the sack has almost become a societal norm. It’s certainly a far cry from the taboo it used to be. The risks however are very much the same.

Most singles today date like they’re playing Blackjack. Although you might like to play only one hand at a time, many players play as many hands at time as they can. Any experienced Blackjack player will tell you; how others play their hand should have no bearing on how you play yours. So if you play more than one hand at a time, how you play one hand, should have no bearing on how you play the other. That’s why the dating games should be played more like poker…if you’re playing games at all.

Whether or not you win at the poker totally depends on everyone else’s hand; just like sex. Unless you’re a professional poker player you probably can’t tell your odds. Your health and reputation are two of your most valuable assets and ones you should never gamble with. I’ve learned in life that no matter how lucky you’ve been and no matter how many hands you’ve won, you can’t possibly win ‘em all and all it takes is one bad beat to lose everything you’ve worked for.