“GIRLFRIEND” = THE B.S. TITLE

LOVE SCENE INVESTIGATION

My boyfriend Ward is a successful songwriter and DJ.  He’s signed to Young Money and he behaves like the Prince song: he wants to be my lover, my mother, my brother, my sister too, and my father. I’m so lucky that Ward supports me while I finish college and medical school.  Ward swears he’s a good Christian and focused on family.  He’s a great boyfriend  and we’re gonna get engaged at Christmas.  Ward claims he has the ultimate respect for me as his girlfriend.  Then why do I have crabs? 

-Sheila M.

My boyfriend Rajiv is very smart — the Cornell grad is going to be a doctor.  He spent the whole summer studying really hard for his medical board examinations. I’m really proud to be his girlfriend. On August 30th, I teased Mr. Workaholic into taking a break to celebrate his birthday at his favorite BBQ restaurant in Murray Hill. We had the candles and sparklers and singing waitress with a molten chocolate lava cake.  One of the other waitresses pulled me aside and asked me why my boyfriend has three different birthdays and three different girlfriends to celebrate each one with him. So Rajiv is the man with three birthdays. He has 3 girlfriends at the same time and he told us all different birthdays: June, July and August 30th. He kept the dates similar so that if any one of us looked at his Driver’s License, he could say that there was a mistake at the DMV. Rajiv is really smart. I mean, a douchebag but a smart one. And I got played like a Stradivarius.

-Nora K.

WARNING SIGNALS

These days, being girlfriend and boyfriend doesn’t always count for much besides friendly sexual access. Many men get a “girlfriend” not because they love the woman, but because this is the simplest and easiest way to get laid consistently for cheap.

Ladies, this is the new game in town:  “The Bullsh*t Title.”

Dinner is a setup — you know how it’s gonna end. Meeting his friends, co-workers and Mom is just a ruse to make it seem real. Time together is spent watching TV at home. You’ll be doing alot of hot sex. Not that anything’s wrong with hot sex. But what’s the point?  Where is it going?  Very likely nowhere. Women stay “girlfriends” with a B.S. man for years and realize way late that he never planned to marry them. He may talk kids, marriage and homebuying but… Is he funny about giving you gifts you can keep?  Dodgy about travelling together and spending holidays together?  Having events and trips you aren’t welcome at? “Hanging with the boys” again? When it’s all said & done, he enjoyed the consistent piece of ass.  I hope you enjoyed delivering it, too.

Deciphering the B.S. is what this blog and the dating game is all about.  And it can be tougher to solve than the Rubik’s cube.

TROUBLE-SHOOTING

Don’t fall for the “B.S. title” game.

If you both felt you struck gold with each other, then there would be no need keep dating and having lovers behind your back.  Next!

MINIMIZING: HOW HE DOWNPLAYS THE PROBLEM HE CREATED

LOVE SCENE INVESTIGATION

I’m a Virginia native.  Third generation to graduate from the University of Virginia.  I try to be a solid friend and sorority sister.  I met my boyfriend Ethan at Homecoming.  We’ve been dating six months. I’ve tried to be sweet and attentive and pamper him every way I know how. In that time, we’ve gone to dinner and I’ve made him dinners. We’ve become intimate and it has been great.  We’ve spent nights over and weeks at home together.  I’ve given him some small thoughtful gifts — a Kindle, a humidor, sneakers. But he’s never given me not one gift. Ever.  No gifts, not a single card, no flowers.  We’ve never gone away for the weekend together.  We do argue and he won’t apologize ever.  He just explains his position and experience of the conflict issue and then acts like it’s over. He goes to weddings without me.  Now he’s gone to Rome over Thanksgiving weekend and excused it saying all he did was save money by sleeping over at his ex-girlfriend’s home and going sightseeing “by himself.” You could have knocked me over with a feather. Ethan wasn’t secretive about his special jaunt across the pond — no, he’s been quite upfront. I believe he’s asked for his freedom so I’ve given it to him.  Of course, he downplays all this.  Acts like and talks like any problem is all mine in my head.  Of course, he has put his hand on my neck to shake me and make sure I’m listening as he trivializes this catalog of offenses I’ve “imagined in my head.” Really, Ethan? Really, buddy?

-Jimena L.

My fiance Michael is a bit of an egomaniac but I love him.  He’s really busy as a real estate broker.  It is not easy to be involved with him since he forgot my birthday and still feels it’s okay to attend formal balls without me but with “platonic” girlfriends from college. Michael wants to waste hours of my time hanging out and calling me to talk about himself.  He wants to go out by himself, to the opera without me, to business dinners without me. He says “No big deal.” But I think he wants all the goodies of having a girlfriend but without delivering on any but the minimum of the responsibilities.  Clearly I’m just part of his rotation.  His attitude is why am I wanting anything more than what little he’s willing to give.  He discounts my concerns that he is being disloyal and disrespectful.  His “why are you bugging me” attitude is a big reason I can’t see a future for us anymore. I just wanted to find someone to love me. And who I could love. And trust. But this is all I got.  If Michael’s love was weed, it wouldn’t be enough to get high on.

-Maggie R.

WARNING SIGNALS

Wow.  Just wow.  The things we accept are mostly things we’ll regret.  And there are a couple of big red flags just a-flapping in the wind with Jimena’s and Maggie’s relationship dynamics.

Reduction words are tip-offs that try to minimize unethical behavior: “Almost never” “sort of” “barely” “no big deal” “not more than” “only a little” “all I did was” “kind of” “but” “once” “just” “merely.”

But why minimize?  Some guys do it because you’re upset and they don’t think you should be.  Some guys wanna do the deed and skip out on the blame. Techniques range. Denying that he intended to hurt you by cheating is big. Claiming “it just happened” as if the action came from the sky and the mists above.

Minimizing lets you know dude believes he’s more important than you. Like when he insists a teasing, hurtful remark was only a joke.  And then adds he rarely jokes like that when he often does.

The most crazy-making minimizing technique comes down to manipulation.  You didn’t hear what you heard.  You couldn’t have seen him do it because it never happened. Therefore he neither has to acknowledge what you imagined nor deal with the hurtful impact of his actions.

TROUBLE-SHOOTING

You are a grown-up and you don’t require anybody’s help to think any more than you need help to breathe.  By minimizing his transgressions, the person in your life is warning you and telling you he has an abusive nature.

Insults, belittling comments, ignoring you, or acting sulky or angry when you initiate a discussion — these behaviors have no place in a healthy, loving relationship.
And if he does not view you as an equal because he’s older or sees himself as smarter or socially superior, you need to give him his walking papers. It’s not gonna get better.

THREE-WAYS AND SWINGING

LOVE SCENE INVESTIGATION

I went to college with Kevin.  He was the cool Quarterback upperclassmen that all girls wanted and all the hot, sexy guys from my year looked up to. For Kevin, college was the place where the difference between being a man-slut and popular was negligible. I only knew him on a “what’s up” basis and from going to parties he threw.  Not a frat guy but superstar-popular on campus. But since I worked in media after graduation, I eventually got to know him when he did business with my company.  Lunch at Asia de Cuba, Aquavit, Patria and Lutece.  At nearly 50 years old, Kevin eventually got married.  He and every other well-to-do dude in New York City had gone through the gotta-get-a-lesbian fetish in for a while. And that evolved into the-do-you-have-a-girlfriend-who-could-watch-us riff.  Gross, right?  But that’s Manhattan.  Just like casual games of strip-poker for oral sexual favors.  Not my kind of party but it’s like in the water or something. I just laughed it off as “strange-seeking.”  But now Kevin incessantly invites me over to share dinner and wine with his spicy Dominican wife.  They have some huge collection of Japanese pornos.  He sounds so weird when he talks about it. Like he’s in a trance. The things he’s says are creepy. I know I ain’t going.  Ever. It’s actually sickening.  I think I liked it better when I didn’t know him all that well.

-Kimberly G.

Xander is my new friend from the ad agency where I freelance.  It’s cool to get to know a hip guy who runs in my same fancy, upscale circles in New York City but there’s just some lines I’ve never crossed.  And I probably never will.  I’ve never felt that my sex life was under-populated, that there needed to be a second, third, fourth or fifth person in the room for me to get off.  Sex fantasy is one thing but I honestly think I would die of embarassment for there to be more than A and B involved.  But it’s like e-eeeverybody has done it.  Three-way sex. Menage-a-trois. Not just the guys, not just in Vegas or the Dominican Republic, not just the bisexual chicks.  So here I am in the slow lane loving life.  I just don’t see the point.  And I don’t think I’m being a prude.  It’s like even when I was just a puppy, kissing one person was mind-blowing and amazing.  I didn’t have spare bandwidth to consider one more mouth or person.  Maybe these people have had some sexual abuse situation?  I know I’m grabbing at straws to understand it but I just don’t.  Of course, I’ve worked with people who are public figures who are very promiscuous or seem to be in cases where it’s a front for being gay.  And I know desperate ugly girls who get around, acting as if they’re so fire-hot.  But along comes Xander talking much nonsense about: “All my swinger friends are millionaires and very successful. You know, everyone gets together at a hotel suite or country home.  And it’s a upscale, classy, chill vibe…” All I can think of is the midget orgy scene from Bob Guccione’s Caligula.  Oh, I think I would be appalled when I wasn’t dying laughing.  I’m just not mature enough for the classy swinger scene.  Or whatever.

-Raquel V.

WARNING SIGNALS

These are strange days, my friend.

These  sexual extremes are considered part of the “new normal.” It’s even featured in a feature spread in W Magazine — the December 2011 issue with the Elle & Dakota Fanning sisters cover.  According to Emily Rothman, an associate professor of community health sciences at Boston University Health Medical Center, 7.3% of teens admitted to having multi-person sex (MPS), 52% reported being pressured, and 43% reported being threatened or forced.   It’s sung about by Katy Perry in pop songs and the terminology is played upon by Nicki “Minaj.”

TROUBLE-SHOOTING

Grown, consenting adults can do what they like but this just seems like too much risk.  Vis-a-vis venereal disease, mental health and the green jealousy monster.

Have people become de-sensitized so regular one-on-one sex ain’t enough?  The mind continues to boggle…


THE SEXUAL ELITE

Gallery

LOVE SCENE INVESTIGATION So let  me tell you about some trouble I’ve been having at work.  Please note that I work on the seventh floor of the Biscayne Building off Times Square.   A week ago, our marketing firm Dunn-Mahoney … Continue reading

DATE RAPIST WANNABES

LOVE SCENE INVESTIGATION

I’ve worked at DelRay Media for four years with Carlton.  Carlton is 10 years married with two children  — his eldest boy was born with Cerebral Palsy and his youngest through a harrowing breach birth.  Carlton’s very smart and we’ve lunched often.  No big deal.  Recently, Carlton and his wife have gone through a rough patch and they have separated.  Suddenly, Carlton has been very needy about our lunches and talks.  He’s been a good friend and work buddy. But it’s not fair for him to try to force me to be his next woman just cuz his life is a mess.  I’ve been really busy moving into the condo I bought off Gramercy Park.  Last Thursday Carlton begged me to have dinner with him.  So I took time out of my life and met him at a Thai place five blocks from my new condo.  Well, he’s bitching the whole time about how I never make time for him and how things are going to have to change.  He says with a queer tone in his voice, “You’re going to start doing things my way.”  I’m like, buddy, your wife had enough of this boss-man crap — why you think it’s gonna cast a spell over me?  Half-way through dinner I was completely out of it and couldn’t even hold my head up.  I didn’t black-out so much as white-out — everything went bright, blurry and psychedelic. So Carlton plays the concerned gallant and half-carries me out of the restaurant.  I remember crossing Third Avenue in his clutches.  He was trying to get me to his car.  It’s Manhattan and I’m three blocks from my home.  I don’t need him or his bloody car. I don’t know where I found the strength and will but I broke away from Carlton’s hold.  On an animal level, I knew getting in his car (or his trunk) would have been a disaster for me.  I have almost no memory of the dinner itself or how I got home. I went from being fine to having to be carried into my building from a taxi by my doorman. Once inside my place, I was tripping on the Berber carpet and furniture like I was blind drunk. God knows what Carlton had in store for me.  Now I realize I made a mistake not going to the hospital and getting bloodtests.  I know Carlton drugged me with a mickey, Rufi or GHB in my Thai Iced Tea. I suppose he intended to blast through my refusals and defenses with his weak rapist game and “make” me have sex with him.  Needless to say I’m polite but keep my distance at the office.

-Tamra E.

It’s embarassing but I’m one of those “stupid girls” who made a really dumb decision and paid the price. I belong to a health club in Murray Hill where there was an open bar by the reception desk one evening.  I had worked out but  hadn’t eaten in hours.  Like a fool, I tossed back a couple.  They were free and it had been a long week.  I was drunk by the time the gym closed and I let an investment banker Evan I vaguely knew from a law class at New York University take me home. He gave me a screwdriver as we watched the CNBC financial news.  The last thing I remember before blacking out was Evan wrestling my yoga pants off and just ignoring me and smirking when I told him to stop. My limbs were like noodles so I couldn’t fight back or get away. Then I have fuzzy memories of wandering around near Macy’s at Herald Square and finding a liquor store and asking to use someone’s phone for help. And I tried dailing numbers but I couldn’t manage to press any buttons. Next I was sitting in the back of a police car.  The policeman asked me if “the sex was consensual.” Then the cop whisked me over to Bellevue for a rape kit. That whole night seems like a bad dream and I’m a perfect example of what never ever to do.  Even with a “normal guy” you think you know.

-Kimber D.

WARNING SIGNALS

No matter if you’re in your 20s, 30s, 40s or beyond, predators abound in the jungle of New York City.  These men hang around women and may play the friendly good guy for days, months or even years.  In their sexual desperation, these wanna-be rapists often get women drunk, offer them powerful drugs, screw them, and then congratulate themselves for being such a stud.  Sexual violence and exploitation remain a sad reality of dating life.

Even Dame Helen Mirren told GQ she had herself been date-raped several times in her late teens and early 20s. “I was (date-raped), yes. A couple of times.” But she did not report the assaults because “you couldn’t do that in those days.”

There are two kinds of date rapists: the ones who spike the drinks when a woman isn’t looking, as well as the sickos who believe they are just partying with women they overwhelm physically or with drugs and liquor.  Both kinds will rape women after they are either “made willing,” or passed out and might not even remember it happening.  Some guys will even take advantage of a woman covered in her own vomit or urine, and pat themselves on the back for being some kind of pimp with extraordinary sexual prowess.

TROUBLE-SHOOTING

  1. Never let go of your drink. Never let it out of your sight.
  2. If a guy brings you a drink, take it slow.  Sip every 10 minutes to give yourself a fighting chance to note symptoms or shifts in the way you feel.
  3. Order drinks in bottles so if you’re distracted the opening is so small it’s hard for someone to spike it.
  4. If your drink is the same color or variety as his, distract him, swap drinks, pretend you had enough and let him drink his.
  5. If you are feeling woozy, do not leave a bar, club or restaurant by yourself.  Do not walk or drive home since you don’t know who might be waiting at your car or front door.  Wait until symptoms pass or go to a hospital immediately.  If several hours pass, they might not be able to trace drugs in your system. And you’ll want to know what you have been given.
  6. If you are already walking, driving or otherwise on the way home, call a friend to check in. Or arrange to switch your destination and stay with a friend.  I’ve seen far too many women tottering home, weaving, barefoot, giggling to themselves, alone.  It’s not just the predator from the bar; you have to worry about each taxi driver, cop on duty, fruit seller, delivery man, regular Joe etc. who can tell you are impaired.
  7. If you experience any memory loss go to a hospital immediately and get tested for a battery of possible drugs.
  8. Contact the last people you remember seeing to help you piece the incident together.
  9. Report the entire drugging and assault incident to the police.

Be safe!  And take all steps to protect yourself and your rights.

5 DATES TO MAKE YOU RUN FOR THE HILLS

LOVE SCENE INVESTIGATION

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/rape-suspect-hugues-akassy-attacked-prosecutor-article-1.200388

I am Mayra and I’m an 18 year old freshman at Marymount, a college for women in New York City.  I’ve been a very dedicated volunteer on a Mayoral Campaign.  I’ve really enjoyed meeting so many interesting people and doing such great work.  One architect Sam and I have done tabling & voter registration at public festivals. We and a bunch of other volunteers have even joined hands to form human chains on Advance teams for the Mayor.  Sam is one of dozens of diverse, interesting people I’ve gotten to know.  So when Sam said he’d be on the Upper West Side on Friday and asked me to lunch at Dynasty Szechuan Restaurant to talk strategy for the Pakistan Day Parade, I didn’t hesitate.  I’ve been studying South Asia and following the rise of new political opposition there led by former cricket star Imran Khan. So I stick the book I’m reading about the partition of India from Pakistan under the chair and it’s a pleasant, interesting lunch. But I didn’t understand how significant it was to Sam that we were meeting outside the Mayoral campaign office alone.  Sam is about 64 years old with four grown children — I’ve no idea what became of his wife.  I thought he was just a nice, friendly older chap like so many other campaign volunteers like him.  That is what I thought until he suddenly got a funny look on his face over fried noodles and leaned in close to ask, “Are you a virgin?”

-Mayra C.

My name is Karen and I’ve been dating a really dreamy record executive Jackson for three months.  We met on a 56-hour music video shoot during which I caught bronchitis from exposure on a rooftop in the Meatpacking District.  We stayed in touch and weeks later started dating. Jackson is great catch — successful, heterosexual,  fraternity member, church member, doctors in his family, military in his family, owns multiple homes in New York and Jersey, a real cutiepie with an aquarium and a BMW truck.  On the downside, he tried to cook for me once.  It is quite a feat to make chicken parts come out of the oven looking and tasting like human ears but though I was hungry, I ended up starving after I politely trashed the meal in my purse.   Note: canned stringbeans don’t require cooking for over an hour.   But he tried.  So we went to the Beyonce concert and Jackson came over to my condo so we could watch the July 4th fireworks from my balcony.  One thing led to another and we ended up making out on the couch.  First Base and Second Base were lovely.  But what is this thing with men wearing compression shorts — y’know, those shiny running or biking pants?  I mean, don’t undies need to be cotton to let the giblets breathe? These shiny hot pants are not very manly or sexy but okay, I can stop by the gay lingerie stores in the West Village and gift Jackson more fetching skivvies. Undeterred, I press on to Third Base.  On my end, AMAZING!  When I *ahem* …”peel the banana” I stop and sit bolt upright.  My eyes are watering and I choke on what seems to be a green haze enveloping me in the soft glow of the Time-Warner Cable R&B channel graphics. The industrial grade rubber and spandex that has been encasing Jackson’s “special” parts has hotboxed a stench like hot, fishy garbage laced with diarrhea and pinetar resin. Clearly, peeling off his shorts was a grave mistake.  I had no warning. My brain is scrambled and screaming: “Abandon ship!  Abort!  Abort mission!”  Polite girl that I am, I murmur the mild critique, “What’s with these shorts?”  Jackson pipes up, “Oh, these keep me from chafing when I walk a lot.  They’re great for running at the gym.”   I surmise, so men have thigh chafing, too.  And I’m thinking, “Do you stink from walking around? Or running at the gym? Would you seriously work out and not shower? Do you need a baby-wipe?”  So I activate Sexual Decompression Protocol #7; I say, “Turn over, Jackson. Please. Let me give you a massage.”  I put a blankie over his bottom half to snuff out the scent flames leaping in the air. As soon as he’s asleep and snoring, I cover him with a quilt on the couch and retreat chastely to my bed. Whew!  Pfwew!  That was close.  Breakfast the next morning was pleasant.  And my best friend and I sent Jackson a present at his office the following week: an anonymous “hygiene gift basket” with deodorant soap, anti-perspirant and ball wash.  He’s a great guy and I hope he took the tip.

-Karen S.

WARNING SIGNALS

Dating is such a delicate getting-to-know-a-stranger time.  And what’s friendly may morph into a date.  And what’s a date can skillfully be transformed into just friendly.  And thank the good Lord for that.

TROUBLE-SHOOTING 

Here’s some problem types you may want to avoid dating:

1. HOMELESS

If cooking up a meal for your man means volunteering at the local soup kitchen, you may have a problem. Let him get himself together first. How does a man in crisis even have the time or will to date? If he’s ignoring this whopping problem, he can’t have his priorities straight. Yes, it’s a tough economy. Yes, jobs and homes are hard to find. But we all have to be tougher, find alternative ways to live, pool our resources. “Mr. Wendell” may just not be the right one. But your guy may also dig the victim role for the sympathy, free help & free meals it gets him. Brother man could be a mooch.

2. STINKER

As in Karen’s tale of woe and to quote the Notorious B.I.G.: “If it smells like garbage, I turn the doorknob.”

3. MR. FIX-U-UP

Oh, the man who wants to tell you how to dress, talk, dance or behave.  Thanks but no, thanks.

4. DOLLAR BILL

Ever had a guy pull out his bankroll, his paycheck or just tell you about his salary or 401K? So creepy.  I’m sure he can pull a golddigger easy, but it’s worrisome he takes it there during your first dates.

5. STALKER

You don’t need some guy you’re dating calling, emailing and texting you constantly.  It’s often a sign he wants to control you.