Archive for the ‘Relationships’ Category

Pick a Fight

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Fighting in a relationship is important. It shows you if someone fights fair or nasty, if they can remain rational, and if you can actually work to solve issues together. In the honeymoon phase people tend to very agreeable and want to avoid confrontation, so you may have to pick a fight in order to see what happens when the going gets tough. Throwing barbs and purposefully trying to hurt the person you are in a relationship with is not someone you want to be fighting with for decades to come. And yes, you will fight, everyone does. But if both of you are unrealistically agreeable until after you’re engaged or even married and then you find out that they fight mean, well, what then? So go ahead and even let your partner know what’s going on and find a topic you disagree on (politics, sports, the absurdity of reality TV) or something else rather innocuous and see where it leads. Good luck!


Watch It: TV Shows to Start as a Couple

by Aaron under Date Night,Entertainment,JDate,Judaism,News,Online Dating,Relationships

We hear it all the time — this is “the Golden Age of Television.” And while movies used to (and all too often, still do) dominate dating entertainment, TV is becoming a great substitute. Especially when you want a consistent excuse to see each other early on, TV shows can be a great bridge. That being said, sometimes choosing a show you both have an interest in starting can be difficult. Lucky for you, that’s why I’m here. So,here’s a list of shows I recommend watching as a couple:

1. Curb Your Enthusiasm/The Comeback (HBO)

If you like to laugh, enjoy the awkwardness of others, and have access to HBO, these are fun shows to watch together. Curb is especially relatable with other Jews, and The Comeback is similar but with Lisa Kudrow as an aging actress with no self awareness. The Comeback is a show I’m currently watching and it’s great in that not a lot of people have seen it. It’s only got one quick season so it’s a great starter show, and if things work out (or if you fall for Kudrow’s Valerie Cherish character), you can check out the decade-later return slated to air in November for a limited run.

2. Orange is the New Black (Netflix)

While I’m sure this is a heavily viewed show, it’s also very gender neutral and easy to jump into. This was the first show my girlfriend and I watched together, starting with the second season (we’d both seen the first), and it made for great times together, or as a great cap to our dates.

3. Masters of Sex (Showtime)

My current partner-binge is a tough recommendation as we’re only one episode in, but so far we’re enjoying it. It’s sexy and has some fun stuff for everyone watching, plus great performances.

4. Brooklyn Nine-Nine/Parks and Recreation (Hulu/broadcast networks)

While the shows are both in very different places, both star likeable ex-SNL cast members in government roles of some kind, solving problems every week. Both shows are much more than that, however, and are very enjoyable to watch together.

5. Mad Men (AMC/Netflix)

The quintessential unisex drama, whether you’re drawn to it for it’s flashy looks or deep character studies, this show has something for everyone. Just beware it can be a little slow… which makes it all the better for some late-night cuddle sessions.

Fall honorable mention:

Affair on Showtime is supposed to be exciting, and that starts airing soon. We’ll be there for the get-go.

My list is brief, but there’s a lot out there to watch these days. What shows have you and your partner (real or theoretical) been watching or considering watching? At what point do you think people should commit to a series together? Comment below!


Rejection Etiquette

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

Is there rejection etiquette? Whether you didn’t enjoy a first date, or after becoming sexually involved, or even after meeting the family… the way in which you decide to break things off changes. However, you cannot use the same approach with the first scenario as you do with the last. So what is the best course of action? Is an official rejection even necessary after just one date? Should you just ignore their calls? Or perhaps a quick text stating, “last night was nice, good luck” would be better. In that case, should you actually answer their call, but turn down the offer for another date?

Obviously the latter is best (and is good karma), but it’s also the bravest choice. All the other circumstances absolutely deserve some kind of communication as to why you are no longer interested in dating. You wouldn’t want to be the person on the other side of a rejection left wondering what happened. It’s not easy; in fact, it totally sucks. Still, honesty is generally the best policy unless it’s going to hurt someone’s feelings even more than the rejection itself. You can always simply say, “My feelings haven’t evolved the way I’d like them to, so I think it’s best we both move on and I give you the opportunity to find someone who will adore you the way you deserve.”

No matter how upset the rejected person becomes, don’t start hurling insults. Apologize again and let them know you wish them the best and move on. This is always easiest on the phone, but if you’ve gotten very serious, then an in-person explanation is more respectful. Just never reject someone via text after the 2nd date!


No Relationship Is Easy or Perfect

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

You can look all you want, but you will never find a perfect relationship. It doesn’t exist. Every couple has problems. Scratch that. Every pair of people — be they siblings, roommates, best friends, business partners, or lovers, has problems. The trick is to find someone who deals with anxiety the same way you do. Stress is inevitable, but if you both are able to get through it together in a healthy manner, then it will make all the great times that much more amazing.

Don’t expect things to be easy, relationships are hard work and anyone who tells you different is lying. If you aren’t willing to do the work to make it work, then there’s no need to live with, work with, or be with, that person.

This may sound harsh, but it’s all true. When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. You need someone who is going to be on your team with the same strategy to win at the game of life. So if you meet someone and issues arise (and they will), don’t fret, just wait and see how you deal with those issues together… or not.


Giving Up on Giving a Guy a Chance

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Relationships,Single Life

Dear Tamar,

There’s this guy I met on JDate about a year ago and we went out for a while; even though he definitely saw a future with me, I never felt there was a future, so I broke it off. I dated a few guys since then, and although there was more chemistry, they didn’t treat me as well and there were lots of other issues. I keep thinking back to that first guy, and wonder if I should give him a second chance to see if the attraction grows. What do you think?

-Give a Guy a Chance?

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Dear Give a Guy a Chance,

You can’t force attraction, but you should allow yourself to open up to things that feel different. That initial attraction is often lust, which can dissipate over time. Being treated well and having a relationship grow based on respect and commonalities can create a much deeper bond and attraction. But, if you’ve given it a fair shake and there’s just something missing, then it’s only fair to the both of you to break it off again.

Be honest and be kind — this man has now been vulnerable with you twice.


Accept the Worst

by Aaron under JBloggers,Relationships

I once thought being in a serious relationship would be the end of my worrying. I was wrong about that, to a degree, in the sense of my relationship. Sometimes I still send a text and worry, for example, but I’ve also never worried so much in all my life since this last month.Why? Because now I worry for two people’s future, not just my own.

What has been good about this though (and hopefully this helps you across areas of your own life), is that I have learned to accept the worst in everything. For example, I was worrying last month about having to take out debt for student loans and being jobless for a little while in New York. After much panicking, I accepted that I may have to take out a small loan, knowing that I will have a master’s in a few months. Now, I’m nearing getting a job, and even then I’m panicking again! It’s not a dream job at all, but it will support me and help me get the things I want for myself and my girlfriend going forward.

I was panicking a lot about the fact that the job may not make me happy for a good while as I started the interview process. It’s important, in my mind, to be happy with your job. Luckily, I have begun to accept that the “worst” in my eyes also means having a job, money and an MBA in a few months — which is really not that bad at all.

Sometimes we fear the irrational. We fear never finding someone, we fear not getting a job, we fear none of it will work out. But if you can learn to accept that it will never work out exactly as you imagined, chances are things will work themselves out just fine anyway. Facing our fears and our flaws is key, and while it’s been a scary month for me, I know only good things are ahead, for me and you.

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Dating During Family Functions

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I have been dating a girl I met on JDate for about a month. We are really into each other and spend a lot of time together. I think we are both excited to see where the future takes us. It’s the first time I’ve been into a girl this way in a long time. I’ve even met her family already and we all get along nicely. Here’s my question: her brother and his wife are about to have a baby and I don’t know what is proper protocol in these situations.

Thanks for your help!

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Dear Dating During Family Functions,

This is a great question and my answer applies to both simchas (weddings, babies, etc.) as well as sad situations (a death in the family). Let your girlfriend know that you’re there for her and are willing to help out in any way you can, but that you don’t want to be in the way if she’s not comfortable having you there. And don’t be offended if she doesn’t want you there as these can be very intimate family gatherings.

Then again, these are moments where the two of you can forge a deeper bond so hopefully she will accept your support. Offer to be at the house to coordinate food delivery, offer to be the photographer/videographer of the bris/baby-naming, or offer to just be there for her at any time.

My now fiance took my son out of the room to go play when I found out a close friend had died and then babysat my son when I had to go to her funeral. Both of those small acts were incredibly meaningful to me.

Bottom line? Open up and let her know that you care a lot about her and want to celebrate life’s joyful moments as well as the tough ones, together. Tell her that you understand it’s early in the relationship to be included in family functions and that it’s up to her, but that you are there for her.


No More Dating Advice

by Aaron under Date Night,Relationships,Single Life

There’s not a lot of dating advice left in me — I’m in a relationship now, and it’s something I think less about these days. A lot of the advice I give is common sense. But really, the one life lesson (I’m starting to learn more of those) I always share is be ready for anything and throw your expectations aside.

“Living in New York, expect life to kick your butt,” people told me before leaving. I was ready. My butt was ready. But it didn’t happen. No, the only way life has come at me is that things have gone so well here that I’m staying! I may be jobless, but I’m also being allowed to get my MBA by December — all from the glory of New York. I made the jump to a place where things are vastly different, and I got an amazing girlfriend along with a wonderful adventure.

I realize that I’ve rubbed this in your face enough and that I’m in an extremely rare situation. But, whenever I sit down to write these blogs, only one thing keeps coming up for me — just keep growing and changing. Perhaps that’s why this will be one of my last blogs giving dating advice. I don’t know how much longer I’m good for advice, but I’m going to try to cover other things to help you be a more viable dating partner in my posts over the next few weeks. My advice may not be like what you will find on other dating sites, but that’s what will hopefully make it stand out.

When I got into writing for JDate, I was a graduate student hoping to share about my years of dating efforts. Now, I’m an out of work near-graduate, hoping to network my way to a job in New York. I think it’s no mistake the year I spent trying to get to New York by networking also led to an increase in my romantic opportunities. When you excel at being a person and getting to know others, romantic success is bound to follow.

Romance is obviously a big part of my life still, but I can’t wait to take you on the other part of my journey over this last year, the part that will stick with you long past your JDate days. I’ll leave you with a great quote from Never Eat Alone — “A networker isn’t looking to achieve a single successful union. Creating an enriching circle of trusted relationships requires one to be out there, in the mix, all the time.” I can’t wait to be a part of getting you used to that, and maybe even finding love along the way.


To Have “The Talk” or Not?

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships,Single Life

If you are too scared to have The Talk about where you are in a relationship, then you simply cannot assume you and your new love interest are on the same page.  To assume is to make an “ass” out of “u” and “me.” Basically, bypassing The Talk could lead one person in the relationship to feeling more interested than the other, which is never good.

Here’s a clue: if the other person avoids The Talk or behaves skittishly and skirts the topic, then that’s your answer. You can almost guarantee he or she does not want to enter into a monogamous, committed relationship with you for whatever reason. Take note and don’t try to convince yourself that they’re a commitment-phobe, or just not ready, or even that you are committed but don’t need to discuss it. This is a red flag. Ignore at your own risk. Just don’t say I didn’t warn you.


The Pros & Cons of Dating in “Location Limbo”

by Haley Plotnik under Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

Dating when you’re in a state of geographic transition can be tricky. Some people have even advised me against it completely. It really all depends on what you’re looking for, and what you want from a date. The more casual you are about relationships, the easier it is. However, these are some of the things I’ve considered when it comes to dating in “location limbo.”

Pros:

• Putting yourself out there

• Getting some dating experience

• Meeting someone who you want to spend time with

• Gaining a new friend or activity partner

• Finding a short-term intimacy partner (if that’s your thing)

Cons:

• Communication complications and logistical issues

• Having an expiration date on your relationship

• Switching to a long-distance situation under time constraints

• Hurting someone

No matter what, it’s important to be forthright about your situation. Some people will not want to date you if you disclose your situation, but you save both parties a lot of grief in the end.