Your Dating Questions Answered, pg1


Our Experts Answer Your Dating Questions

Josh Piven and Jennifer Worick, our Dating Survival columnists and co-authors of Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Dating and Sex recently did a live chat for Happen. Check out the great advice they offered.

By Josh Piven and Jennifer Worick

Question: I'm dating a CEO. He's really busy during the week. Is that a bad sign?

Josh: I wouldn't say that's a bad sign. By definition, a CEO probably tends to be busy all the time. If it's just during the week, you can probably count yourself lucky. But if you want to pursue a long term relationship with this guy, that's something you're going to have to accept with him.

Jen: The same goes with anyone with a challenging work schedule, like a doctor or CEO. That's what they come to the table with as far as their baggage or issues, so you have to decide if it's worth it. But if they don't make time for you, that could mean you're not a priority in their life, and you certainly need to feel you're in a relationship with someone.

Josh: On the bright side, they may have a lot of stock options!

Jen: And a private jet!

Josh: Although they may soon be indicted as well.

Question: Hi. I am an exotic dancer. I was wondering if I should tell my dates that.

Jen: Absolutely! That would probably add more interest or spice to your dating life. They're going to find out eventually what you do if you're in a relationship with them, so it's best pretty early on to tell them the story. Hopefully, they'll be intrigued and not put off.

Josh: I think it's also important to make it clear if this is something you plan to do for a career or if it's temporary between careers to make extra money, because that could make a difference. But I agree with Jen that you should tell them. I'm not saying tell them right away, though.

Jen: Hopefully, they'll appreciate your honesty.

Question: How do you prescreen guys who just want a physical relationship? I am disappointed that, after three dates, if we don't do anything more than kiss, I never hear from them.

Jen: I had this happen to me last week! It's hard to prescreen anyone until the first date. Talking over email or the phone only gives you so much. If you can go on a date with them in a public place where you're comfortable, and they seem to be coming on too strong, you have to trust your instincts and get out if that's not what you're looking for. If it is, that's great, but you have to be clear about what you want and see if they match up with you. And the only way is to meet them. You can do that in a one-hour coffee or drinks situation.

Josh: I'd definitely agree with the public place part. Don't invite them back to your apartment when you're alone! A lot of men would take that as an invitation, so keep the place public. You can make it clear in your profile that you're looking for a long-term relationship and not only one night stands. That will help you weed out people.

Jen: There are also clues in their profiles. If they want to swing or have strange photos, or by the activities they pursue, reading between the lines could tip you off that they don't want a long-term relationship, and that they just want to have some fun.

Question: I've been dating a new guy—my first after becoming single again, as I am for him. He kisses me, holds me, calls me daily (several times), and makes plans for the future, but then he says he just wants to be friends. What am I to think?

Jen: I don't think he knows what to think! It may be that he likes you as much as he is capable of, being that he's just single again. So he could be skittish about being in a relationship. He probably likes you, but can't give much more yet.

Josh: Maybe the two of you have different definitions of being "friends"! He may have lots of 'friends', but I'd ask him straight out why he's giving you these mixed signals. Ask him if you have a romantic future beyond just being friends.

Question: Would it be OK to tell someone I love them in a card? I can't get the words out in person.

Jen: If it's someone you've never gone out with, that might not be OK.

Josh: Or your boss...

Jen: But if you're going out with someone and you have that sentiment, it's certainly nice to express affection in all kinds of forms. But it sounds like you're scared to say it for fear of it not being reciprocated.

Josh: Probably if you're not comfortable enough to say it, you need to wait until you've achieved a level of intimacy. This could be your subconscious telling you it's just too early.

Jen: Again, trust your instincts. If something is telling you it's not quite right, then you can wait a while and see if your instinct changes.

Question: My girlfriend broke up with me. She said she had feelings for her ex, and then she said she just needed some time by herself. Should I send flowers and a card to get back with her?

Josh: It is a maxim in the dating world that when someone says they've gone back to their ex, it isn't necessarily true. It's a way to break up without hurting your feelings. I'm not sure that sending flowers or a card will get you back with this person. Is this other person someone they had a long-term relationship with? Is it someone they prefer to you? If so, you don't have too many options. You can only be yourself. I'd try as best I could to find out the true reason for the breakup.

Jen: I think the important thing is that you don't sit around biding your time to see if things work out with the ex. The problem with letting someone down gently like that is that it still leaves some questions in the dumpee's mind that there's still affection there, and if it weren't for the extenuating circumstances, you'd still be going out. I think you should get on with your life. She may come back to you if you still have a good base level relationship with her. Check in with her occasionally if you're still interested in her to see how she's doing.

Josh: You could also hire a private detective to follow her around.

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Would you buy someone a holiday gift that you've been dating for less than 6 months?

Yes, if I want the relationship to continue

Maybe, but only to avoid seeming rude

No, that's too early to exchange gifts

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