Friday, February 18, 2022

Happy Dating [Part 2]: SEX

🚨Warning: Do not read this post if you don't want to know about my sexlife 😜

I'm great in bed!

Not bragging but I just know my strengths: bad at dating, great at sex πŸ˜‰

This is a continuation from the last post because with dating comes sex and I think we should talk about it. I believe there are two keys to being great in bed:

I do not do casual sex. Like Sally, I am all mushy and oxytocin'd* up after a good session and so I don't do that unless I feel comfortable and connected with someone. Here are the top things I do to feel safe when dating/sexing:

Keep My Number Private
If you're on the apps the goal is to get off the apps... but DO NOT give anyone your number until after the first date and you know you want to go on a second. Just say: 
I don't give out my number until after our first date for my own safety and privacy.
There are a couple reasons for this: the main one is to avoid scammers that want your data/info but the other is that they'll Google you and know all about you before they even meet you. I had a guy tell me that he had looked me up and I was what he was looking for because he had seen a lot about me online. He did give me his info after he told me that and he was not a creepy stalker, but I want them to meet me first before they think they know me. If they push you, it's a 🚩

Meet in the Middle
For the first few dates I always ask to meet in the middle of where we both live. Main reason is I don't want them knowing where I live nor even put on the table that they might be coming back home with me. Also, I want to keep my favorite local places to myself until I know I wouldn't mind seeing them there if things didn't work out.

How They Breakup
Before you start things with anyone it's good to know how things might end. One for your safety but also for your mental health. Did they have a mutual parting with the last few people they dated; did someone end up crushed; are all their exes crazy? How they've done it in the past is how things will likely end with you. Are they mature, communicative, kind, sane or are they a manipulative asshole? You're going to get naked with them, it's OK to ask, and if they're a jerk about it don't give them that honor! 

You must use condoms. Don't care if they say they do not have STIs or were recently tested. People lie. Lie about what they have and who they are doing. I've had friends who have caught everything from herpes to HIV to ended up pregnant- so use protection. And this is also a good way to tell if they respect their body and yours too. No condom, no sex.

Is there even the hint of violence in how they treat you, how they talk to you if they don't get their way, how they refer to their exes or anyone else in their life? 
If so, RUN!! Your safety is the most important thing ever. You can't take a chance on this and you can't change anyone, so RUN! They are not your person: Period.

Worse Case
You're going to want to feel safe and good about sleeping with someone, but what if things don't go well? Will you regret being with them? Don't sleep with anyone you'll be devastated to have walk away after because unfortunately some will.

Start with You
The key to good sex with someone else is to start with good sex with yourself. I have great sex with my partner because I know what turns me on and how to get myself off. I love it when I'm being sexual with someone because I'm there to not only participate in their pleasure but help them help me get to where we both want to be... if you know what I mean, and I know that you do 😁  

Nooky List
We're not kids anymore and so as middle-aged people it's a bit ridiculous to be paradise-by-the-dashboard-light-ing it with sex. I don't need to get them to promise to love me in the mooorrrrning and make me their wife... I simply don't want to jump right into bed before I know and really like them. Yet, I also get it's confusing to know what is respectful when things start getting hot and heavy. And I for sure do not enjoy Wonder Woman-ing it and having to bing-bing-bing ward off advances. So my solution, and hold the judgement until you try it, is to map it out. Now come on, I mean you really should have seen this one coming- ha! Once sex comes up, I think it's a good idea to sketch out on a napkin or in iNotes what will work for you.
A NOOKy List is used to spell out what you find the No's and the Ok's of fooling around. Get it... Nooky!! πŸ˜‚

As far as how long to wait and what'll work for you, I have no idea. I've tried to use Matchmaker Maria's 12-date Rule. Her philosophy is that you're all hormone'd up and not thinking rationally the first several dates so if you want a real connection with someone you should wait until you know if you're truly a match and 12-dates is a good number to get beyond chemistry and into compatibility.
And there is no saying you can't, if you feel safe and connected, change your mind and go for it sooner. Just keep in mind how they make you feel. I once had a guy say he respected my boundaries, even if he tries to test them. Uhm, you don't test someone's boundaries if they told you directly what they are, that's the very definition of not respecting them. Clearly, should have been my 🚩

Once you decide you're ready: go for it and have fun! Sex is a natural, thrilling, wonderful way to connect with another human being. It's a special gift but not one to be hidden away or shamed about or put up on a shelf because we're no longer 20-yr-old hotties. Once you find someone you feel safe with get your sexy on and have a Happy Happy time! 

Life is short~ date, sex & if you don't find your love, keep doing it until you do ❤️

*The love/bonding hormone that leads to feeling all loved up.

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Happy Dating

I should start by stating upfront that I am not a great dater- no really! I'm only jumping into share this topic because we're in love month and I have learned a lot about what not to do when you're single. So take this all with a caution that I really have no idea what I'm talking about ⚠️

Ok, that said... let me share my 2022 dating philosophy: 
It's a numbers game, try on your non-types and make sure to have some fun!
I've spent a good deal of my adult life in longterm relationships so when I found myself single four years ago the first thing I did was heal myself from what was not a great end to a heartbreaking loveaffair. Therapy. Reading. Then when I was ready I got cajoled into online dating which I had always sworn was so not me. Well, especially now, if you want to date and expect to get your best options you need be open to sample what's available online. And since this was new territory I sought some expertise and started following some pros-- my favs are:

I also pulled off the shelf my pal Amy's fantastic book: Meeting Your Half-Orange. This little nugget alone changed my dating mindset:

Basically, we need to think of dating as a Match Game- if you don't flip over your love-monkey πŸ΅πŸ’› nothing's wrong... you're just not looking for an elephant. 

When I began to think of it that way I realized it's not a bad thing to meet and release those that are not a match, it's just one person closer to the one that will be. 

For years I had told my single friends that were dating that you need to meet at least 20 people before you'll find one you'll really like. Ha! Easy to advise, hard to do when it was my turn. It's exhausting to connect with lots of people that aren't your person. And in these pandemic-y politically charged times it's also a little scary as well. So here are my best tips thus far:
  • Join Bumble to start. Lifetime membership is $230 and worth the cost because I've found it's the highest quality easiest to manage site. The filters alone are worth it.
  • Crushes: Author Gretchen Rubin shared a friend's philosophy that it is always better to have more than one crush at a time so you're not needy and don't get overly-invested too soon. I think 3 crushes is ideal πŸ˜‰
  • Screeners: Trust me I hate that this is necessary but I do ask people three questions before I agree to date them: 
      • Are you vax'd? 
      • Did you vote for Trump?
      • Do you believe in the literal word of the Bible?
Yes, I'm open to meeting people of differing opinions but I've found these are values-dealbreakers for me and I had to implement them after several run-ins with anti-vax-Trumpers who feel if only I believed in a talking snake we would be perfect together 😳Again, this is why paying extra for filtering is SO worth it!
  • Pre-Meet: I am a big fan of a call or video chat before you agree to meet up for a face-to-face date. Saves you the time, energy and disappointment of an awkward encounter. I've found if they don't want to speak before you meet there is probably a good reason (if you know what I mean).
  • Good Karma: Dating's hard for everyone. So the least we owe each other is to be kind. For me when I know someone is not my match I try and send them off with some compliments and if possible the reason I am wishing them well and unmatching. 
    • It doesn't always go this nicely but that's my goal. Had to move on from cute-Ken because though he wasn't anti-vax he hadn't gotten his by late summer and that was not going to work for me. Even though he had his solid rationale (and a minor in microbiology), I couldn't get over his reasoning so I sent him the kindest note I could explaining why. I think it's the least we can do for each other. 
    • The other thing I've discovered is people pop back up on other sites or in real life (like at a friend's birthday party 😬) so don't ghost or be jerky unless they really deserve it. 
  • Try Them On: My sister thinks I have a type- she's not wrong mind you- but I have gone off type before. Actually way way off type, but that didn't work out so great so I was back to looking for what I thought I wanted when I got a like from a guy who I had already passed on. But when he showed back up again I gave him a chance and sent him a rather playfully sarcastic note about how I didn't think we were a match but was I missing something?
He sent back a funny confident reply that had me amused and intrigued... and yada yada yada... a few days later gave me one of the best kisses I've ever had! So, though he didn't match my image of what I wanted he was definitely worth the try-on.
  • Modify the List: My friend Diane tells of how she got serious about what she was looking for and made a map of the qualities she wanted and then her Dave appeared. Which is a great story and start. But I've learned now that I'm older different things are more important than even a few years ago: kindness, calm, self-awareness. I'd rather have a person who loves what he does then shows off what he has; cares about listening to me and creating together how we want things to go; that gets why his previous relationship wasn't his last and can own his part in it. That's sexy as hell to me now!! 
Today I care less about his looks and more about how it feels when our legs touch while deep in conversation; he can be shorter if he's got a huge heart; and if he's working out some large challenges but has great communication skills, watch out I'm a goner 😍

Ok, so a few other small random tidbits:
  • Guys say they like humor and are "fluent in sarcasm" but don't test this notion until you meet them and make sure they're at least as funny as you are. Learned this the hard way (sorry, CL πŸ˜•).
  • Text only in the first 48hours then meet or at least talk before more texting. It's really easy to be misinterepted and have things go off the rails or acquire a texting-buddy which is not good for moving things along.
  • Dating is suppose to be fun... so get a few cute outfits, have some light stories you can share if you get nervous, and remember if it doesn't feel fun you never have to see them again... and if does, YAY you might get to see them again!
  • We never know what someone is looking for so just be you and if you're not their person that's great you now have another card turned over and one less non-monkey to worry about.
  • If you're joining an online site make sure you have a friend take some new flattering pics of you. Don't cut your ex out of old pics or use ones that don't look recent. If we're friends, I'll even do them for you. You deserve to go in with the best snapshot of what you have to offer -- of course, no false-advertising but certainly don't sell yourself short either!
When I mapped out 2022 and got to the [Love] category I created that I would connect with 50 possibilities this year. Match and release, meet and make out, or maybe fall madly in love? 
Who knows... but I wanted to up my game and take more chances and lean into a Happy Happy lovelife. 

I am better this year at dating than I've ever been. I'm finally having a good time with it. And I don't know how things will be by yearend but I know happiness and Joy can be fun with a sprinkle of lust and love mixed in. So I hope you have love in your life in all forms... and if you're single come try out some Happy Dating with me-- why not? 
Love is a lovely way to Happy 😊