Tag Archive | Dating

Budget dating ideas that don’t cost a fortune

Let’s call it what it is.

Dating is expensive!

Besides the cost of making yourself look less sasquatchey (pretty sure we’ve financed our beautician’s third salon) and more like the Snapchat Goddess that you are, you have the cost of the date itself – movies, dinners etc., all of which quickly deplete your fun budget. And yes, we always go Dutch!

So before you go and sign up to discount days on various voucher websites check out our date ideas that don’t suck (budget or balls):

In tandem

Most big cities have places where you can hire a tandem bike and which are really affordable (around £40 for the whole day). It’s also also a right hoot and you get to explore your city (and your date’s bottom) more closely. Remember to take a picnic with you to refuel (*wink *wink) at the next park.

Pop-up Wine Bar

Vinery London is hosting another pop-up wine bar this Saturday. Just rock up and sample some delicious wines and pay what you think the night was worth (and based on how much you’ve guzzled away).

Volunteer together

Volunteering together may not be the first thing that pops into your head when you think ‘hot date’ but it can be a really fun and rewarding experience. Head on over to http://www.do-it.org for some ideas and let’s not forget the mayjaaah karma points you score. Who knows, this could be your thing as a couple.

Just have pudding

A girl’s gotta eat, right? So next time you head on to a restaurant, why not ditch the starter and main course and just have one (or four) different desserts to share with your date instead? It will be cheaper and let’s face it, you will have the pudding anyway so you might as well have the brownie, lemon tart and creme brûlée at the same time.

Go to a festival

What’s better than to dance the night away with bae at a festival? Dancing the night away at a free festival of course. Check out this handy guide to find one in your area.

Do you have any other wallet-friendly date ideas you want to share with a fellow dater? Share them in the comments below!

 

3 reasons why you should date a vegetarian (even if you love a good sausage)

Hey meat lovers, it’s #Nationalvegetarianweek so let’s talk about why it’s ok to date a vegetarian.

Many members of the carnivorous persuasion are often put off by the idea of dating someone who doesn’t’ share our love for all things burger, steak and sausage. I mean, it is delicious, right? Anyhoo, let’s look at why dating a veggie may actually be a good idea:

They won’t bite

Pun intended. Believe it or not most vegetarians aren’t out there to recruit you to their way of life like some crazed cult follower. Oftentimes they worry if being veggie may be a problem for you. Seldom are your carnivorous ways a deal breaker for them. Vegetarianism is a personal choice so you won’t have to worry you may have to gnaw your chicken drumsticks in secret.

Your culinary world will open up

Veggies are foodies too and they don’t like to eat boring stuff, so finding restaurants that offer delicious veggie options that go beyond the cheesy pasta dishes or salads can be an exciting adventure, which is sure to open your world to new and exciting dishes.

You won’t have to share your fave food

If you are like me, you don’t particularly like to share your food. Sorry, it’s nothing personal, but you order yours and I’ll have mine, thank you very much. So, hands off my sticky BBQ ribs!

Lastly, when dating a veggie you may inadvertently start to eat healthier without even trying. More veggies = longer life. What’s not to love?

Are you a vegetarian? What advice would you give Meat Lovers? Sound off in the comments below.

So you’ve been ghosted…what do you do?

So you’ve been on more than one date and you seem to have instant chemistry.  You’ve been texting for a few days since your last date, and then, POOF!  Your match has vanished into thin air.

Welcome to the murky world of ghosting.

Ghosting is a term that is becoming more and more frequently heard in the dating circles and so in our latest blog we thought we’d do a little research and find out just how people feel when they’ve been ‘ghosted’ by a date.

After quizzing some friends and asking around on social media these are the statements that came out:-

  • Makes you feel worthless
  • Makes you feel confused
  • Leads to you mistrusting other potential dates
  • Leads to a ‘why do I bother’ mentality
  • You feel disrespected
  • Feeds insecurities

Let’s face it none of those feelings and reactions are positive and dating should be positive, it should be adventure, an opportunity to meet new people, try new things, have new experiences and make lots of memories.

Ghosting sucks, and this article about a girl who was ghosted by a guy she’d been seeing exclusively for six months (!) shows that it’s not just the early day’s relationships that fall prey to this cowardly technique.

So what can you do if this happens to you in the world of online dating?

    • Take a positive attitude – it is not you with the problem. If someone ghosts you it is highly likely they have done it before.  A leopard cannot change its spots remember!

 

    • Don’t be tempted to keep messaging for an answer as to why – you won’t get one, and if you do it will be lies, it would see a classic excuse is for the ghoster to say that someone close to them has died and their life has spiralled out of control.

 

    • Don’t change who you are – remember you shouldn’t change just to fit into someone else’s lifestyle. If they cannot handle all of your AWESOMENESS then they are not worth your time and effort.

 

    • Don’t give up – get back online and start making new connections. Relationships don’t just happen they take effort.  So be dynamic and start something.  Just don’t desperation date (more on this later!)

 

    • Always and most important – remember YOU DIDN’T MESS ANYTHING UP.

Breaking up with someone is never easy to do, but ghosting is really cowardly and more brutal than actually being honest with someone.  Focus on yourself, going out with friends and ultimately holding your own and remembering your manners when everyone around you forgets theirs.

Has ghosting happened to you? How did you cope with it and what tips have you got for others in case in happens to them.

A woman’s guide to surviving dating in your 40s

Let’s be honest for a moment and put it on the table; dating in your 40s is pretty grim (ok, personal experience talking, it is bleaker than a public service station restroom at the side of a deserted motorway).  At 40 the competition is steeper and it becomes a whole lot more confusing and you’ll find the type of men in the over 40s dating pool very different.

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Here are some truths that could help you navigate the tricky path of mature dating.

The men are having a mid-life crisis

Men like younger women. A lot of men in their 30’s and 40’s seem to have an awakening moment and panic that they’re getting old and as a knee jerk reaction go out and find the perkiest 25-year-old they can find in an attempt to settle down.  Even if you are near their own age they will still see you as ‘old’ and dismiss your profile. Harsh.  You may well be witty, successful, outgoing and smart but none of that matters in their heads once you are in the over 40’s club.

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You attract that toy boys

An older, gorgeous, confident and self-assured woman is an absolute lure for a man in his late 20s.  To them, the age gap works in their favour as you’ll be comfortable and well skilled in the bedroom and the perfect teacher for them to learn some tricks.  It may suit you to end up with a 25-year-old toy-boy between the sheets but you’ll struggle to find someone old enough to suit your lifestyle and goals if you go down this path.  Think late night booty calls and the wonders of dick pics…really??

how-original

You love your kids but not everyone else does

Having kids and attempting to get back to dating and relationships is tough. All the time you are mindful of their needs and emotions.  You’re careful not to introduce them to every date, you question when to introduce them to the date and then you’re also trying to juggle a date around organising child care.  For some guys the fact you’re a mother will discount you instantly; remember… that says way more about them than it does about you.  Equally, you don’t need to introduce them to everyone unless you think that person is going to have some level of permanence in your life.  If you enter a relationship be upfront about your kids and whether you realistically want more and you’ll soon find out which guys are serious about sticking around.

You’re set in your ways

Dating in your 40’s means you know what you want – this translates to you’re stubborn and won’t deviate from your ideal situation.  Your list of dating dealbreakers is far more set in stone than it was when you were 25, and if you’re looking to settle down and start a family this is now crunch time and you’re going to be super picky about it.

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There’s too much choice

Your phone is full of dating apps, you have RSI in your thumb from continual swiping and you’ve moved to second base (WhatsApp) with several potentially interested parties. Stop! Too much choice is a bad thing and makes it harder for you to spot the genuine guys who are real relationship material.  If you want a partner with a similar professional mindset and age to your own then it is quite possibly you need to be looking at mature dating websites rather than the usual hookup apps.

You’re flying solo

Chances are that by this point all your other female friends are married, also have kids or are in long term relationships.  This means that you’ve lost your partner in crime who will pull you back to reality on nights out after too many mojitos.  You are flying solo with no wing woman in your corner to guide you.  It can be awkward talking to your friends about your dating exploits when their lives are on a very different path and can leave you feeling a little isolated.  Advice? Confide in one close friend who you really trust with your dating tales and keep it between the two of you – their advice will be invaluable and more genuine if they feel like it is something just between the two of you.

wing-woman

Dating in your late 30s and early 40s is complexed.  Shapewear becomes your best friend and there’s a whole text acronym sub culture you don’t understand, but on the plus side you don’t have to justify your stream of one night stands to your mother anymore.

Ultimately, don’t lose hope, when you fall in love as cheesy as this sounds it really is something very special and if it was so easy to come by, well all the sense of mystery around it would be gone and it would lose the magic.

Remember at the heart of it you are an amazing woman and anyone will be lucky to have you….just be patient, don’t settle for second best and keep on searching.

 

Navigating Valentine’s Day as a New Couple

It won’t have escaped your attention that in just over three weeks the most romantic (and equally most dreaded) day of the year, Valentine’s Day, will be upon us.

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For new couples this can be pretty daunting and place a lot of unnecessary pressure on a new relationship.  You may have only met your perfect match online a few weeks ago, but you can already imagine the two of you on February 14th exchanging gifts and having a romantic evening together.  You’ll spend ages finding the sweetest, wittiest card that has just enough sentiment without being too close to those three words ‘I love you’, you’ll painstakingly scour Not on the High Street for an appropriate Valentine’s Day gift and you’ll go all out and book that fancy new restaurant in town instead of the Chinese all you can eat buffet.

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Stop!  For a minute let’s all take a breather.  Whilst there is nothing wrong in telling or showing someone how you much you like them, Valentines Day is just one day out of 364 others, and a meaningful relationship isn’t built over a bouquet of roses.  Grand gestures pale in comparison to the littler acts of appreciation, thoughtfulness and sincerity.

When you start a new relationship everything is exciting.  The simple ping of your phone telling you that you’ve got a message, those ‘good night’ and ‘good morning’ texts and those surprise date nights to pick you up and get you through a tough week are all little things that matter early on.  It is about getting to know each other, what makes your partner tick, the little foibles and things that make you smile about each other. The unnecessary commercialism that is placed on Valentine’s Day takes all that away and it stops being a day to establish and grow your relationship and having fun.

Then there is the added problem of what if you and the person you’re seeing aren’t on the same page as to how to celebrate? Maybe one of you is all about grand gestures and going all out to treat the other person whilst the other partner is all about sentiment and “it’s the thought that counts.”

#Awkward

embarrased-valentines-day-expectations

Our advice?  

Do enough just to mark the day.  By all means, acknowledge it but don’t make the whole day revolve or be about Valentine’s Day.

If you’re seeing each other during the day plan something different for an activity.  Why not consider doing something quirky together such as going to a make your own pottery place and creating something together.  Go to places that won’t be full of hundreds of other couples – head out to the countryside and find a nice country walk with a halfway pub.  If you live near the coast take a walk along the headland and draw funny messages in the sand. Restaurants are over priced so get creative and consider doing something at home like a romantic picnic, add in some candles or fairy lights and big floor cushions and create a foodie delight to enjoy together.  If your relationship is at that stage you could always play some naughty food games for fun and there are lots of aphrodisiac foods you can enjoy together!

romantic-walk-in-the-woods

These are just a couple of ideas on how you could spend Valentine’s Day with your new partner; if you have more we’d love to hear them.

Remember, that spending time together on Valentine’s Day is more important than anything, so make it count.

How to survive online dating – be yourself.

We’re all looking for ‘the one’, the ‘perfect partner’, the one who always makes us smile and sometimes when you’re dating it is really easy to lose sight of the simple things that make you unique and what you’re looking for in an ideal partner.

When you start dating you quickly realise that there are timewasters, those who will mess with your head and heart and lead a double life, fly by nights, and those with more drama than a soap opera, but there are also emotionally healthy people who really do want something lasting.

The problem is that we disillusion ourselves into what makes the perfect Mr or Miss Right, and the illusion of enhanced perfection is all too readily purported.

looking for your perfect partner

Many of my female friends have delusions about finding a Tom Hardy or Ryan Reynolds lookalike in their local and will instantly discount any man that attempts to chat them up who doesn’t fit this bill.  Equally, most of my male friends admit that its looks they go for, several of them were more open minded and admitted it would be the way a woman dresses, the way she carries herself and even how much makeup she’s wearing that would determine if they asked her for a date.

Some of them even admitted that for the average Joe it is intimidating at the best of times for them to approach a woman but even more so when she’s dressed up like a cast member from Real Housewives of Cheshire.  Why….because they can’t see who the real person is.

Why….because they can’t workout who the ‘real’ person is that they’re looking or talking to.

This week on First Dates Hotel there was the most adorable guy in Eddie the electrician. He was a real man’s man and got matched with a beautiful girl.  Despite his nervousness his personality shone through.  He made witty jokes, he paid compliments, he was a gentleman, for me he would have been the perfect date.  He told an emotional story and opened up to his date – a brave thing for guys to do.  However, his date for the night felt the need to make him feel uncomfortable by making reference to his nerves, she led him on with flirting, swam in her bikini in front of him and then benched him to the friendzone.  Ouch.

I take my hat off to Eddie – he admitted that the girl was ‘out of his league’ but that he’d love to date her and see her again.  He told her so and although his being honest and open didn’t work for him it was his natural persona that made him so endearing to the viewers.

Hang in there Eddie.

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Don’t get me wrong it is natural to put on a different persona when you go out on a date, to behave a little differently to when you’re at home.  You’re nervous.  There is anticipation. You’ve probably been chatting online for weeks and have heightened expectations of what you want from each other.  There’s the hope that you really want this to be ‘the one’.

On dates you’ll give typical responses during the evening such as ‘it was nice to meet you’ or ‘thanks for a nice night’.  You do this because you put up a wall that says ‘be cool, be casual’ that way you won’t get hurt.

STOP….if you had a really nice time and there was laughter and eye contact and flirting and the awkward moments didn’t last long ask to see that person again!  Be brave, take a chance – if you really want to find someone that’s what you have to do.  Lay yourself bare (not literally as that would be strange and weird) and throw caution to the wind. Sometimes a connection doesn’t happen on the first date.

If you don’t be brave your date will just think you’re not interested and both of you will fade into the night, opportunity missed.

Also, don’t put all your eggs in one basket when you start dating.  You might meet some great dates over the course of a few weeks, be open to going on multiple dates but be upfront if they ask if you’re dating anyone else.  Don’t think dating is now your life….it isn’t.  Organise nights out with friends, if you’re on your own at home enjoy the time to yourself and do things for you.

The saving grace about internet dating is that it’s a sea full of fish and there are a lot of fish to catch. Always though be clear to yourself and your date about who you are and what you are looking for. Compatibility isn’t about being two people being the same it’s about two people just finding one thing that gives them a connection.

It could take one date or fifty to find that connection but the more honest you are to yourself and your date the less exasperating the whole experience will be.

Are we dating in the dark ages?

The following headline jumped out at me today whilst catching up on social media on last night’s episode of First Dates.  Instantly it had got my back up:-

Is your CAREER holding back your love life? Dating app reveals which jobs are considered the ‘sexiest’ for women and men…’

Before you check your calendar the year is still 2016 and we haven’t reverted back to 1816 (although from reading the full article on the Daily Mail website you would think we have).

I couldn’t believe that we were all really this shallow in the 21st century when looking for love. Had we forgotten about the art of romance and instead become wooed by the size of a date’s bank account?

couple in love

I think I read the article with my mouth agape, which wasn’t the most pleasant for my work colleagues, but I couldn’t actually believe what I was reading.  Apparently a leading US dating app had analysed the profiles of 1.5 million of its users and claims that job titles can have a dramatic impact on people’s love lives as data shows how professions can affect likeability.

According to the survey the ‘sexiest’ professions for women were flight attendants, speech therapists and a product manager (nothing like a bit of stereotyping).  For men it didn’t get much better with the top three most ‘desirable’ professions being a doctor, psychiatrist or a lawyer!

Now it’s not difficult to spot that the male jobs are high salary, professional executive roles which is somewhat worrying as it would imply that females choose our dates based on earning potential / potential for gifts.  

As an independent woman in her late 30’s this shocked me as I really thought we were beyond the materialistic aspect of who to choose for your date.  However, upon surveying a small sample of female friends on whether certain jobs would entice or put them off a potential lover it appeared that job title was the one box all of them would look at first.

A friend of mine bluntly put it ‘there’s no way I could date the  £10 an hour pizza delivery guy when my £200 a session psychiatrist is a much better option – just think about it, you’d get awful cheap bottles of prosecco on a Friday instead of a good bottle of rose LP.”  

I hang my head in my hands.  Really – females of society – have we resorted to this in order to find our perfect date?

Ironically the men I asked weren’t much better with at least a dozen quite happy to reinforce the ‘sexy secretary’ myth or the fantasy of joining the mile high club with an air stewardess.

online-dating-profile

This begs the question, in the world of online dating how many of us actually put our real job title in our online dating profiles?  When I tried online dating a few years back I put as my job title ‘Entrepreneur and Business Owner’, after all this was what I was.  The number of high flying corporate men who approached me was phenomenal – yet for one guy who was a self employed plumber I was deemed too ‘ambitious and driven’ and he actually commented that he was threatened by my job status.

Curious.

Surely, for those of us looking to find a long term partner one of the most attractive things about a person is their desire to better themselves and grow, and our careers are the way that we do this.  Anyone with any form of gainful employment surely is an attractive option because they are showing independence and commitment for a job even if they really really hate it!  

Me personally, I am far more likely to date an employed individual (it doesn’t bother me what they do) than an unemployed individual.  

Why?  Simply because if a person is unemployed it says so much to me about how they value themselves.  There are thousands of jobs available, and they might not be what you want but they are there.  It is better to have any job than to have no job at all.

So whether it’s the pizza delivery guy on a Wednesday or my personal trainer on a Friday if either of them ask me out on a date over Christmas I would quite happily say yes!

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Have you had other online daters hit on you because or your job description on your profile? Or perhaps you have had potential dates fizz out when your job doesn’t meet your date’s expectations?  We’d love to hear from you.

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