Gender issues

How Roses Can Teach You What You Need to Know About Love…Getting and Keeping It

roses and a book

 

 

I’ve been told this post was the most important one I’ve ever written…it certainly was a critical life lesson for me.  I’m reposting it for you this Valentine’s Day…

 

FTD must have been the original St. Valentine, or the Saint was a hell of an entrepreneur.

 

Roses are synonymous with The Big Red Heart day. Thanks to the media, not a man alive escapes the message that your sweetheart will give you ANYTHING if you remember the roses. And, according to Valentine’s Day rules, the ones in buckets at the local grocery store don’t count.

Well, I certainly believed that my husband knew that, but in case he didn’t, as we strolled by the downtown florist I “oooed” and “ahhhed” over those “roses in the window”. Now, I was SURE he got the message!

Enter V Day in rural Maine. The year, 1983. It was the same year we had purchased our first desktop computer and Dell became a household word. I was like a kid playing in the mud about that computer. A burgeoning writer, the idea of never again using carbon paper and easy editing was almost orgasmic.

I woke up to the second day of a Nor’easter. The lake in front of our house was frozen solid, the roads plowed during the night were now piling up with snow once again. My first thought was that those florist delivery trucks would make it no matter what. So, the titillating wait began.

My husband dressed and shoveled his way to the car heading for the hospital where he worked. I guessed he was preoccupied with weather when he didn’t mention Valentine’s Day, so I let it go. The roses would mend everything.

Not only were there no florist delivery vans on the road that day, but it was hard for a snow plow to stay upright. As darkness came and it was time for my husband’s return from work, I put on a little black dress, opened a bottle of wine and put the kids to bed. On the counter was a lovely crystal vase just waiting for those roses.

The door opened and brushing off the snow, he said, “What’s for dinner?” What???  OK, he was going to surprise me. The roses were in the car and I began to worry that they would freeze, but poured us both a glass of wine. Since he hadn’t said those magic words, “Happy Valentine’s Day, darling.” I took the initiative (It was the era of feminism after all).

He then pulled a brown paper bag out of his briefcase and handed it to me with a smile and a toast. I couldn’t believe what I pulled out of that bag…a book! Are you kidding me, I thought. A book! It was an early version of Computers for Dummies.  That is second only to a blender for your anniversary. I was surprised, disappointed and really pissed and it all came rolling out of my mouth. “You got me a BOOK for Valentine’s Day?” I said. And then I saw his face lose all signs of life and joy. As he walked away, I felt so ashamed and yet, I was still filled with disappointment and confusion.  How could he not know I wanted roses for Valentine’s Day? Remember the walk by the florist window?  Any man with a brain should know his sweetheart wants roses.After what seemed like hours, he reappeared and we sat down to a cold dinner, half a candle and a Golden Retriever who had retreated under the table. “Donna, do you know what I went through to get you that book? I wanted you to enjoy the computer because I know how important writing is to you, so I drove in a blizzard all the way to Boston (almost 200 miles) to get this book for you. I thought you would appreciate it, but I can see you don’t.”

My heart sank. I knew that all the apologies in the world could not make up for the words I could never take back.

That day my life changed in ways that were profound and permanent. For the first time I knew that men want to make us happy. That they have their own ways of showing love. That they cannot read our minds. That our expectations of them are based not on their world, but on our preconceived notions of what love looks like.

That Valentine’s Day love came from Barnes and Noble, not from TeleFlora. It came with such beautiful  intention and thought. All I had to do was be open to what HE called love. It changed me forever and though I am still waiting for those roses, I know that one day a new love will bring them my way.

Please post this on your social media sites if you think it will bring a better Valentine’s Day to those you know and love! Thank you.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day

If you are tired of spending Valentine’s Day alone and ready to find someone to share this next amazing chapter of your life, let’s talk about how to get yon there!

Call 510-817-4242 or email me at donna@donnasbigredchair.love and I’ll send you my Love Readiness Quiz!

Donna Bailey, M.S

Coach, Speaker, Writer and Expert in Dating and Relationships for “Grown-ups”

Donna’s Big Red Chair

www.donnasbigredchair.love 

What “Rules of Dating” Really Matter?

rules photo

 

 

Boy, do we have rules when it comes to dating and relationships! Most of us have no awareness of them until we stop long enough to see them.

And, truth be known, about 90% of these rules only get us into trouble.

 

A good friend introduces you to someone, saying “You two would really like each other. You should get together!” Well, since personal introductions are as rare as hen’s teeth, you’d be a fool to ignore it. Who makes the first contact? Rule 1: Assuming this is a heterosexual match-making effort, this rule says that the man “should” take the first step.  But Why?? Remember going to the junior high dance with your girlfriends and waiting for one of those cute, sweet guys to cross the gym’s Arabian Desert with the confidence of  the Fonz? Pretty much didn’t happen, right? Well, why are we still believing that is their job when it was too scary for them way back then?

 

Try on this one…Rule 2: Men don’t like women who are aggressive, bossy, dominant, “forward”, or… wait for it…powerful. True or False? Who knows, but many women have this belief in the marrow of our bones, so to be the first to say, “Let’s meet for coffee” feels scary and risky. My question is WHO IN THE HELL WRITES THESE RULES?

 

How many dates until you sleep with her? Who pays the dinner bill? How long after the date should you wait to send a text saying “I had a good time” or “Want to do this on Friday night?”  How long do you date before you expect someone to be monogamous? How do you ask them if they are still online?

 

And after you have been seeing each other _______ months, is it time she/he introduced you to friends and family? He/she hasn’t said “I love you” and it has been ________ months. He wants to go to Peru for two months. How can he do that? He must not care.

 

You get the gist of it and if you pay attention to your own thoughts, there are many many more of these RULES by which we live for some ungodly reason that is beyond me. And yet, I am drawn to live by them too until I realize (and I have realized big time lately) how utterly random and destructive these kinds of benchmarks are in our love lives.

 

Me… I am working hard at developing a new paradigm of dating and relationships. In this new world, I will let go of artificial timetables, useless stereotypes, and random measuring sticks as much as is humanly possible. Then, I plan on spending some time surveying what “rules” might need to remain because the remaining 10% are healthy guideposts and boundaries and those are a necessary part of loving someone and building a life together.

Confusion often leads us to make mistakes that can cost us an opportunity to find the love we so want.

If you’re not having success in your search for love, perhaps it’s time to learn the truth about what men and women are all about and discover just how to find a special someone with whom to share this amazing chapter of your life!

Donna Bailey, MS

Coach, Speaker, Writer and Expert in Dating and Relationships for Grown-ups

Donna’s Big Red Chair

510-817-4242   donna@donnasbigredchair.love

Please, No Drama Ladies!

Oil and water not mixingIt seems that there are quite a few men out there in the dating world who are quick to say,”I don’t want any drama in my life.” What exactly do they mean by that??

 

If by “drama” men mean conflict, then good luck finding a healthy woman or for that matter, a healthy dog. If there is no conflict in your relationship, something is amiss, and the degree to which you can negotiate will tell you all you need to know about the prospects that the relationship will survive.

 

Let’s assume he does know how to deal with inevitable conflict. Perhaps, “drama” brings up the memory of a woman of the past that he just couldn’t make happy no matter what he did. The more she wanted from him, the louder she got. With each increase in decibel or the number of “We need to talk(s)”, he withdrew. And each time he “went away”, she sank into despair. Is this what he calls drama?

 

For every man’s desire to avoid “drama”, there are a dozen women who are asking for a partner that can “communicate”. And she means…??? She might mean he doesn’t check out, get quiet, get angry…she just wants him to “get what I am saying”…to be understood. Don’t we all want that?

 

Here’s what must happen if we are to find a loving partner. We have to understand each other as men and women. The first thing we need to accept is that we are like night and day in the best of circumstances. Men who are healthy and vibrant want to be loved and understood, and most of all, ladies…they want to make you happy. That is numero uno for them…just to make you happy.

 

Men…a woman who is healthy will feel things deeply and though she is strong and capable, she will need you to listen to her, hold her at the end of the day and just listen. She doesn’t need a solution. She just needs to be heard. That is what makes her happiest of all.

Please post this on your social media site and post your comments on this blog. Let’s get this conversation started so we can be happy in love.

 

 

 

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