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Aug 19

Here’s why he disappeared

Posted on Thursday, August 19, 2010 in Advice, dating, Happiness, Kat, Men, Relationships, Singles, Women

Mia and I were wrangling over the “special” thing last week. Was it wrong, greedy or needy to want to have someone make us feel “special”?

Do we need to feel “special” past the age when our Moms and Dads told us that we were?

Do we abuse the idea of what we “deserve”?

I don’t know on the “special” thing, and I’d say, sure, we probably can and do abuse our notion of what we “deserve.” Still, most of us don’t want to be with someone who makes us feel like crap. So, why do we tolerate it?

Good question.

So I felt somewhat validated when I read this:

“If you want true power and control over your love life, it’s about breaking that pattern of trying to fix relationships with broken men who treat you like crap, and making healthier decisions about about men. …  (Y)ou’re going to realize that you don’t want a guy who doesn’t make you feel special. You’re going to be free to have a relationship with a man who actually gives you the love you deserve.”

It’s from dating coach Evan Marc Katz‘s new ebook, “Why He
Disappeared
.”  

Disclosure: I was approached by Katz to become an affiliate in the book, meaning I could stand to profit from its sales. I have nothing against making money, but I won’t endorse anything I don’t believe in. So, I asked if I could read it first, and I have.

Do I believe in it?

I’ve read my share of self-help books, and so many of them are filled with stuff we already know!

But do we follow through?

Not so much. And that’s the reason why we keep making bad choices in our life when it comes to relationships and other things.

Perhaps it isn’t bad to have a reminder now and then; it’s kinda why we read some blogs anyway, right? To check in on
whether what we’re feeling is “normal” or not.

So, there are a few things Evan’s got going for him.

  1. Evan’s blog is on my blogroll — not something I take lightly.
  2. He’s a guy; as I’ve said before, most of your gal friends are going to be “yes” women; they’ll tell you what you want to hear, not what you need to hear — which is whatever responsibility we may have in a guy’s disappearance. Not because they’re being manipulative or disingenuous, but because they’re women, too! If you want to know how you rate as girlfriend material, ask a guy. Blowjobs, too.
  3. Evan gave Lori Gottlieb dating advice, and, boy, does the girl need it — she rejected a guy for his name! His advice is part of her book “Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough.” Now, I didn’t love the book (too long, self-absorbed, blah, blah), but some of it makes a lot of sense to me (although I still shudder, as so many others do, at the word “settle”; it’s a loaded word), and I’ll bet the parts that make sense to me are the parts Evan’s in.
  4. Just the other day, I wrote how we gals have it all wrong; we’ve accomplished so much, we’re making big bucks (well, not me, but others are!), we’ve got fancy titles at work and maybe we have the coveted corner office. You go, girls, But, guess what? Women’s degrees and ambition aren’t aphrodisiacs or turn-ons. Evan has been saying that, too: “Ambitious, successful, strong — the qualities in which you may take the most pride — are not your most desirable assets to most men. It’s not that they don’t matter. It’s that what most men want on a first date is a woman who is easygoing, fun, and appreciative.”

He is so right about that!

Other things he says that I like:

  • The qualities that attract us to each other also repel: “We love your feistiness. We tire of the battles; We love your active mind. We tire of the arguments; We love your passion. We tire of the drama.” (OK, guys can have drama, too, but whatever.)
  • If you want a masculine guy, embrace your passive feminine side.
  • Most guys aren’t bad guys, some are just clueless; cut them some slack.
  • Don’t live by arbitrary rules, like you’ll only have sex after x-number of dates. All we have to do is figure out if a guy is interested in us or sex. If we don’t know the answer, don’t get naked!; go ahead if we think we do.
  • Don’t rush through a relationship as if we’re trying to get to the end of a novel; let things develop organically, not with insecurity and fear of what’s next.
  • The best we can do to keep a guy around is by enhancing his life — “making it better, easier, and more pleasurable than if he was single.” Kinda like wanting to feel special.
  • It’s not like Evan wants us to be doormats, but choosing the battles — as any mom of a teenager knows — is key; “by letting go of control of the small things, you get to win the big ones.”
  • When it comes to a man accepting who we are — Meredith Brooks’ declaration that a guy should “take me as I am; this may mean you’ll have to be a stronger man” isn’t always the right way. “Alter the perception of who you are.” We all tend to focus on our own needs, not always our guy’s needs. Hey, he has them too.

Ultimately, here’s the book’s take-home message:

“(I)f you were dating a good, solid, relationship-oriented man who suddenly disappeared, chances are not that he’s threatened; but that he’s looking for someone who makes him feel better about himself than you do.”

That’s hard to hear, but hear it we must. Guess guys like to feel “special,” too.

So, do you need to read “Why He Disappeared“?

If you can figure this stuff out on your own and stick to it without downing numerous pints of Ben & Jerry’s or Lemon Drops, and burning out your girlfriends as you “process” for the umpteenth time, probably not.

If you want to have a comforting “I know what you’re going through” voice to keep you true to yourself, then by all means, buy it.

Here’s the link to “Why He Disappeared“; the ebook, audio and video package is on sale through Sunday (with a one-year money-back guarantee, longer than many relationships!).

Just tell him you were sent by Kat …

… who probably should be writing, “Why She Disappeared.”

  • Do you believe your partner should make you feel “special”?
  • What does feeling “special” look like?
Aug 16

Eat, pray, love or live alone

Posted on Monday, August 16, 2010 in Divorce, Happiness, Honesty, Relationships, Singles

We were barely past the trailhead yesterday when it started.

“OK, please tell me you’re not going to talk the whole time about ‘Eat Pray Love,’ OK?” I announced to Sara and Mia. They’d gone to late show Saturday night, and I knew they were itching to drag me into the post-divorce self-discovery drama.

“But, we still processing,” Mia said.  “Women were crying in the theater. It’s very, very cathartic.”

“Process away. Just
keep me out of it.”    

“Honesty, Kat, what’s your problem? She found happiness after an unhappy marriage, just like we did,” Sara said, a hint of snark in her voice. “What in the world is there not to
like about her story?”

“Look, anyone can find some sort of happiness traveling the world for a year
if they don’t have to worry about paying for it and finding enlightenment in India. I mean, that’s
why people go to India in the first place, for goodness sake!”
I said. “But, really — what woman eats with such abandon without freaking about getting fat?”

“So, that’s why you don’t like it?”

“No. I just think it’s self-absorbed and gives women a skewed message.”

“Like?”

“Look, we didn’t find ourselves while traipsing around the world. The real test of life post-divorce is being happy living your normal life. You know, the one when you wake up every day, go to work, do the laundry, figure out how to get your kid to the dentist and soccer when you’re in an office across the bridge from him, deal with the ex and make ends meet.”

Mia and Sara looked at me with scrunched up faces as if they were searching for some sort of a rebuttal. But what was there to say?

I’m all for escaping away from our regular life and finding adventure, spirituality, Javier Bardem. If I could, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

But the path to self-discovery for a woman post divorce has little to do with pasta and ashrams, and everything to do with being on her own and figuring out “Who am I now, at my age, without a husband?”

And key to that is learning how to be alone.

Most of us didn’t do that. We went from the pink-carpeted rooms of our childhood to bunking with college roomies to shacking up with a sweetie or two to the marital bed of a picket-fenced home — where so many of us lost ourselves.

I know some 8 million (mostly female) readers found Elizabeth Gilbert’s story an inspiration. She found herself! She found love! She made millions!

If she could do it, we can, too!

And maybe we could. But I wish she found herself, love and happiness from making better choices while living her normal life. Because most of us will never be able to take a year off to do what she did — and what does that mean for us when it comes to self-discovery?

  • Have you “discovered” yourself post-divorce, or are you still on that path?
  • Is it better to “find yourself” in exotic locales, or living your day-today life?


Aug 12

Get naked, just don’t get paid for it

Posted on Thursday, August 12, 2010 in Honesty, Kat, Men, Relationships, Sex/sexuality, Women

“This totally pisses me off,” Sara said, throwing down the newspaper in disgust.

“What are you talking about?”

“Just because Jodie Fisher posed nude and did a little soft porn like 10 years ago, she’s seen as some bimbo gold-digging slut who brought
down a hot-shot CEO — as if he had
nothing to do with it.”     

“Well, he …”

“He’s married, for crap’s sake!”

“Yes, but …”

“Look, maybe she is a gold-digger. Maybe the whole sexual harassment claim is bogus. But
what does her past have to do with it? Is making porn or posing nude a crime?”

No, it’s not, at least not in the United States. As
a matter of fact, your neighbors are probably posting last night’s amateur sex tapings on the Internet right now. And your teenage daughter? She just sextexted some hottie she hopes to sit next to in AP English when school starts later this month. Or, maybe it was to the really cute teacher.

Is Fisher any better or worse than a certain recent president who tossed off his druggie past as “youthful indiscretion”? Probably not.

The difference is this — she’s attractive, she’s a woman and it has something to do with sex. That’s a deadly threesome.

I know quite a few women who have been
sexually harassed, including me. Would I have sued one of my harassers? Hey, I’d love to see justice, because some of them made things really crappy for me at work. But there was that time I had sex with a man I barely knew in a public place; and the time I wore that uber-slutty outfit when I was in college (the only age you can absolutely get away with such antics) and hoping to sleep with the lead guitarist of a band I liked; and at least one of my former boyfriends has Polaroids of me being a nasty little girl.

How likely would it be that those things would work against me?

I don’t know, but you can ask Jodie Fisher.

OK, so my “youthful indiscretions” probably never made it past someone’s now-failing memory or crumpled in a nightstand drawer. I wasn’t in a Playboy collegiate spread or a movie like “Intimate Obsession.

Not to say that I wouldn’t if had someone asked. But, whatever …

No, I didn’t profit from my sexuality, but I’m guessing that wouldn’t get me off the hook. Ms. Fisher, who had dreams of stardom, worked her looks and bod — which all gals do to a certain extent. And it’s happening younger and younger, thanks to a hottie-obsessed society. hey, people — sex sells! But, she got paid for it, too. Maybe we just don’t like that.

We all like watching porn (well, many of us), we have pole-dancing girls nights out, we sextext naked pictures of ourselves to our sweetie yet we judge those make their living from the same things. That’s weird.

HP’s Mark Hurd leaves with $28 million. Fisher’s working at her mom’s staffing agency, in between a dry cleaner and a hair salon, in a small strip mall in New Jersey, raising her son.

But I’ll bet somewhere someone’s offering her lots of money to pose nude again. Because, we’ll want to see it!

If I had a daughter, I’d be so making sure she wasn’t posting anything sexy on Facebook or sending naked pics of herself over her cellphone. But, I have a son; I guess I have nothing to worry about.

  • Why do we diss women who make a living off of their looks and bod (while hoping to them naked at the same time?
  • Does someone’s sexual past matter in a sexual harassment suit?