What Aziz Ansari can Teach us about Dating and Seduction

What Aziz Ansari can Teach us about Dating and Seduction

In the past week, allegations of sexual misconduct were released by a website called Babe.  According to the allegations, Mr. Ansari asked a 23-year-old out on a date that, in her opinion, turned into a nightmare and led her to conclude that she had been sexually assaulted.

My Background Working with Sexual Assault Survivors

I want to be clear that I consider myself an advocate for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.  In the past two weeks, I have walked 3 personal friends through reporting very significant date rapes.  All three of them made the choice to report it to police, to have a rape kit completed and go through the process of getting a restraining order.  All three women were scared and told themselves that maybe it was a “hookup that went bad.”  In their cases, there was nothing that put them at fault.  These situations were clear abuses of power and caused physical and emotional harm.   Judges did not stall in giving these women their restraining orders.  One of them has been harassed by his family members and wishes that she didn’t report the incident just so the re-traumatization would stop.  Date rape happens more often than we think.  I routinely deal with this in my professional career as a psychologist and have special training in the assessment of domestic violence and abuse (including sexual abuse).

The Ansari Allegations Raise Other Issues: What Does it Mean to be a Man?

I, however, do not see the Ansari allegations in the same manner. Rather, the allegations bring to light a huge problem we have with American dating and hook up culture: None of us really have a clue on how to communicate about dating, relationships, and sex. We are too afraid to just be honest about what it is we really want.  Every woman in New York has had a version of this dating story but with differing outcomes.

It is hard for women, let alone young women to really understand what it is like to be a man in the United States. I’m obviously not one but I do work extensively with men who struggle with their personal definition of masculinity.  They worry that if they don’t make a move that women will think they are not interested.  They now worry that if they do make a move, they will be at risk for sexually harassing their date.  What most women don’t know is how much men’s masculinity is tied to their ability to get women to like them and ultimately sleep with them.  Most of my coaching conversations with men under 40 revolve around how to increase the number of women they sleep with.  It often becomes my job to dig a little deeper as to why they are not yet ready for a serious relationship.  The response is almost always related to previous rejection and pain associated with a bad experience with a woman.  Women simply do not understand the power they have to make or break a man’s ego at a young age. Eventually many grow up to use women as a form of validation that they are indeed “a real man.”  Tinder becomes a tool to recieve the self-esteem boost he lack on the inside.

Why We Can’t Always Simply Blame Men

To further complicate things, we can’t blame all men for this point of view.  We essentially train them to be this way as teens and young adults.  We teach them that women like assertive and confident men.  We teach them that persistence is the key to getting a woman to sleep with you.  We teach them that if they want something, they need to go get it.  We mistakenly tell them to “man up” when they are struggling to express their emotions.  The documentary The Mask you Live In beautifully discusses the toxic culture of masculinity we have cultivated in this country.

We DON’T teach young men how to read body language or read the state of mind of their date.  We don’t teach them that they are more likely to misinterpret a woman’s interest in sex. We don’t teach them how to calibrate their approaches to fit the woman sitting in front of him rather than memorizing a list of universal rules.  We don’t teach them that the REAL definition of seduction is about being selfless and socially calibrated so she feels safe enough to pursue sex, a hookup or a relationship. The real definition of seduction is more about sensuality and respect – the very things women need biologically to feel comfortable with having sex with any man.

Rather than learning these skills young men, who were not good with women at a young age, focus on achieving high levels of financial success and/or status.  While women may be more likely to make more careful determinations of whom they share their bed with as they become more successful, most men do not think that way. Success and wealth can become a tool of manipulative seduction whose aim is to get a beautiful young woman into bed as quickly as possible.  These men truly believe that being seductive means using explicitly sexual language and acting sexual. They simply do not understand that the real definition of seduction requires an understanding of the other person as a human being and selflessly providing what she needs to feel comfortable enough to consent to sex.

Most Women Want to Have Sex Way More than our Culture Allows us to Believe

What is funny about this viewpoint is that most young women today would be more than happy to sleep with a man quickly if he treated her like a gentleman, made his intentions known, and asked for her opinion or allowed her to lead. There is no shortage of one night stands in NYC. Many men and women happily hookup without a problem and the men that are successful with women do not have to work so hard – their behavior makes her feel safe enough to consent in the affirmative.  It is a healthy interaction where both parties feel happy with the outcome.

So here is what I think went wrong in the Ansari situation:  She expected to be courted and respected because that what she needs to be turned on.  He failed by this account.  She gave him complete control of the date. He thought he was on a roll and that it was time to seduce her into bed.  Had his approach been completely different, one in which made her feel taken care of and respected, I doubt that this would have been the outcome.  Had he made his intentions known from the start by telling her he was not interested in anything more than a night of fun, it would have given her the opportunity to consent or not. The problem may have been sidestepped all together.

What Now?

For everyone to move forward, we really need to be mindful to deal with the lack of respect we have toward each other in general. Online dating has commoditized women and women are tired of feeling like an object.  Women also need to communicate with men when they do things we do not like.  Simply stopping communication and disappearing does not help to resolve the issues that transpire.  We as a culture can put a stop to these types of behaviors if we are simply brave enough to communicate and behaviorally match our actions to our words. 

We are all going to have problems in the dating department – I just hope this story encourages women to assert themselves without anger or defensiveness so that men can learn how to treat women appropriately and women can learn to simply walk away from experiences that make them uncomfortable sooner.  I also hope that men can begin to simply be upfront and honest about what they want to avoid this type of mismatch. If you just want sex, find the woman who just wants sex.  Be open, honest, and direct.  You may be surprised how many people are willing to share your vision and how happy that relationship oriented women will be if you stay away from attempting to seduce them with overly sexual behavior on a first date!

If all else fails, keep it classy – in today’s world, you can’t risk ruining your reputation over a bad sexual experience.

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Licensed Psychologist and Founder of Rapport Relationships

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes is a relationship expert and licensed psychologist.  She provides dating strategy, consultation, and date coaching services to clients all over the world.  Dr. Rhodes is a frequently sought out media expert on the topics of seduction, sensuality,  dating, divorce, and relationships.

#MeToo, Now What? How to Move the Conversation about Sexual Harassment Toward Concrete Action

#MeToo, Now What? How to Move the Conversation about Sexual Harassment Toward Concrete Action

There are many women across America who are celebrating that men are finally seeing repercussions for their sexually inappropriate behavior.  It surely is a time to sit back and thank all women for their sacrifices in getting to this point and shared their #MeToo stories.  From Minakshi Jafa-Bodden who was brave enough to file suit against Bikram Choudhury for sexual harassment and won to Ann Curry whose career was derailed simply because she set appropriate professional boundaries with Matt Lauer, women are standing up and finally receiving the recognition for their reports of unprofessional and inappropriate behavior .  All over the country, men whom we perceived to have a great deal of power are being told that at the end of the day, they abused that power and now, for the first time, must face the consequences.

It is unclear how long this trend of bestowing consequences for, unfortunately, very common behavior will last.  Human resources managers and attorneys are likely to be kept very busy for a long time.  Yet, as a professional with forensic psychology training and expertise in domestic violence and sexual abuse, I can tell you that while we may get excited by the progress that is happening now, it would be foolish to think that this battle is over.

In fact, smart women know that the war has just begun.  Smart women know that not every organization will support them, even with these changes.  Smart women know that white women may be safer to report sexual harassment than women of color.  Smart women know that just because you report sexual harassment does not mean it stops. Smart women know that startups or companies without actual human resources departments likely do not have the staffing to handle these reports appropriately.  Smart women know that our world is quickly turning into a freelance dominated culture where human resources simply will not exist to help a solopreneur.

A problem that will not go away

Sexual harassment is a problem that will not easily disappear.  Power and control are intoxicating feelings and are often heightened in high stress situations.  If we as women are to have any true impact on the future of the workplace environment, we must come to terms and LEARN how best to manage power dynamics in the workplace.  Mimicking the perpetrator in the office is likely not a good long term strategy but education about power and control is.  Learning to identify the dynamics well before a line is crossed is good prevention.  Knowing how to protect yourself and build alliances in the workplace will continue to be necessary.  Gaining an understanding of why our culture rewards narcissists and other antisocial individuals will help build resilience. These are all skills that traditionally men have been better at than women and we can no longer afford to let these aspects of the game slide.

Young women are at highest risk for thinking that this does not matter.  In her book, Nice Girls Still Don’t Get the Corner Office, Dr. Frankel’s statistics indicate that women still have a long way to go to earn the money and the power that men have. Over the past few years, I have helped numerous clients transform his or her own image to deal with a multitude of environments.  I continue to convey that having a strategy that aligns your personal and professional goals is as necessary for your career as it is for your personal life. Women are the first to say they don’t want to play games.  Unfortunately, in both areas, if you do not play, you likely do not get what you really want and if you are a solopreneur or in a freelance/creative industry, isolation can quickly kill your career.

What is troubling me today is the naïve idea that if we simply tell our stories that the world will change. While building a community is helpful, statistically we have known for years that between 40% – 60% of women in the workplace have experienced behavior that is classified as sexual harassment.  These numbers do not highlight the additional smaller percentage of men who are experiencing it as well.  What the #metoo campaign did well was show men how close to home the problem was but in lacking a further goal, the #metoo campaign also scared a lot of the men that are capable of supporting women.

#MeToo is just a start.  We need a new definition of masculinity.

For a problem that is so common and widespread, the underlying issues will need to be addressed over the long run.  In my opinion, the biggest reason why such behavior is so frequent and common is related to the fundamental lack of respect for relationships in general and a complete lack of communication skill across the board.  Further, we have a culture that teaches men that masculinity is related to how many women you sleep with.  If you want to better understand what is wrong in our workplace, look at the dating industry where young men still pay obscene amounts of money to pick up artists to learn how to sleep with women.  Or visit a high school and listen to the stories of dating violence and bullying.  The behavior starts at a young age and we are doing very little to circumvent it.

Where are All the Good Men?

Over the past five years, I have heard stories from women about why they left their firm to start their own practice or set out to become an entrepreneur.  Most of the time the story highlights a man who made them feel uncomfortable at work and didn’t want to deal with the drama anymore.  Yet, I have also worked with amazing men who are now living with high levels of anxiety about NOT sexually harassing women and are scared that women will misinterpret their behavior if they are friendly towards them.  These men have experienced women in their personal life who have given them feedback that their behavior is in some way inappropriate when they were in no way intending to harm them.  While they take the feedback seriously, they find themselves confused and hurt choosing to avoid contact rather than risking offending another woman.

These men are hiding themselves both personally and professionally at a time when we really need them to step up beside us not behind us.

There has been story after story of fathers who do not know how to address this topic with their daughters or whom think, because they are not a woman, that what they should say does not count.  Silence now sends the message to all the women that their experiences have been trivial.  If you are one of these good guys, it is imperative now that you figure out why you are staying silent.  Women need you more than ever.  Daughters need you to lead and these perpetrators need to know what masculinity really is.

To move the #MeToo conversation forward, these are recommendations we all should consider.

  1. Encouraging people to simply report sexual harassment may put them at risk if they are reporting in an environment that does not value relationships or a healthy work culture. Workshops to train men and women about how to navigate their own work culture prior to making a report will give men and women the tools they need to take a step forward with confidence.
  1. Immediately respond to sexual harassment by saying no and asking for it to stop. This can be verbal or written.  Do not feel ashamed if you realize that certain behavior was sexual harassment at a later point in time.  Simply ask it to stop when you realize what is going on.
  1. Men need to take a hard look at themselves and commit to ongoing personal growth and development. This may mean learning more about relationships and communication at a young age and making the conscious choice to stop using women in their personal lives as validation for their masculinity.  Our culture needs to help men redefine what masculinity is and give our young men choices to find themselves.
  1. Women need to take a hard look at why they often give up their power in both their personal lives and their work lives while trying to find “the one.” Women are so willing to give their power to someone else that it is little wonder why we think men have all the power – they do because we gave it to them.  Books like The Rules are basically manuals on how to be assertive and know your worth.  We have a self-esteem crisis among women in this country and it needs to be addressed now.
  1. Most women feel ashamed that they did not say no right away especially if they have been victims in the past. We have an epidemic of sexual assault and domestic violence in this country and we need to start paying attention and funding the programs that we know work to stop the violence.
  1. Women need to consciously build relationships and create a support team to call upon in times of crisis. Women in relationships are more likely to have no support team outside of her spouse. We need to support everyone in building their team.  Women always do better when they seek legal counsel immediately. Hire a therapist or a coach for a few sessions.  Sometimes even the right career coach can help you navigate this situation.  DO NOT GO IT ALONE.
  1. We are in a dangerous place if we simply focus our attention on the men that commit horrendous behavior and do not validate the men that do the right thing. Individuals and organizations should start to find ways to highlight those people who embody the values and the ideals of company culture.  When we focus on the positive and ignore the negative, everyone’s behavior changes for the best.
  1. We need to focus on social skills and assertiveness training of our for both young men and women starting in middle or high school. Training young women to just get your education without giving attention to the social skills they need to handle future difficult situations will mean that women will stay at the bottom and be scared to assert themselves when needed later in their career. Training men to “be a man” does nothing to give them the skills they need to communicate with women.
  1. Organizations need to start getting smart about using holiday parties and corporate retreats to begin to train men and women about appropriate conversation and respect – and no I don’t mean more of those horrible sexual harassment videos. The biggest issue I see is in the inability of men and women to read nonverbal body language.  The easiest way to teach these skills is to hire a well-trained social dance instructor with psychology training to come and give a lesson.  You may be surprised how easy it is to spot problematic people by watching them lead in a dance lesson and having them experience what it is like to be a follower.
  1. Women need to mentor other women and encourage them to participate in the office politics and help them strategize their career from day one.
  1. Women in their 20s need to realize that dating is a wonderful opportunity to practice boundary setting, negotiation, and relationship skill building Avoiding all dating because you are focusing on your career means less opportunity for practice and a decreased opportunity in better understand men in general. Mindfully cultivate a group of people in your personal life who are supportive and be quick to eliminate anyone who does not meet your standards.
  1. Women need to hire mental health experts to help them deal with their emotions and learn skills to manage their anxiety. Anxiety and fear is often what hold women back whereas men are more likely to simply move forward even if they are scared.
  1. Women need to learn how to think like a detective. Documentation, keeping a journal, knowing how to write emails to collect data etc… go a long way to making a woman feel empowered to take ownership of how she responds to sexual harassment.  Most women do not know how to write effective emails or understand that emails can form the basis of documentation.
  1. Women need to monitor their social media profiles and be active in their industry. Relationships make it easier to find other work if you really need to make a change.  Do not get complacent in your current job.  Always be interviewing.  You will feel more powerful always knowing you have options.
  1. Women need to learn to waste a little time and learn to work smarter, not harder. I can’t tell you the number of women who sacrificed their entire life for a project only for that project to be taken over simply because her boss did not respect her as a colleague.  Boundaries make you more powerful and respected.  Men do not give up their poker game for a date or a business meeting.  You shouldn’t give up your exercise or hobbies.
  1. Money gives women credibility and power.  Be assertive with negotiations and with what you are worth.  If you are in a helping profession or a creative field, do not think that you must be poor to help people.  Money is the tool that will help you help more than a handful of people.  It is why it is the Time’s Up campaign is so powerful.
  1. Invest in learning how to manage your personal image with your hair, makeup, and clothes. I recently gave feedback to a 35-year-old man that he should be wearing a blazer to meetings since he was not the engineer on the project but rather than an attorney. A few weeks later he did it and was shocked with how much more respect he received. Women need to do the same and invest in their appearance as an assertiveness tool.  Men are inherently visual – if you want to give them something to look at, make sure it is your face so they listen to what you say!  In fact, men often dress this way to convey their power.  If you do not match it, you leave yourself vulnerable in some industries.  Learning how to use your dress for different environments is also a powerful tool.
  1. Build your personal life around your core values and value your personal time.  You will need these outlets to cope with difficult work situations.  Life should exist outside your work.  Take the time to focus on your passions – you never know when you will need them or who you will meet participating in them.

So much of what I see in my clinical practice is being experienced in the work environment.  Both men and women need assistance in navigating the new realities of their work and personal lives.  If we all begin to focus on the research that indicates that healthy relationships are vital for our wellbeing and happiness more and more men and women will act more assertively to make change in line with the research. If we also actively reward the women and men who are treating everyone with respect, we can finally change our culture.

Relationships simply make or break our lives.  It’s time to treat them with the respect they deserve.

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Licensed Psychologist | Founder of Rapport Relationships | Founder of VAR

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes is a relationship expert and licensed psychologist.  She provides dating strategy, consultation, and date coaching services to clients all over the world.  Dr. Rhodes is a frequently sought media expert on the topics of seduction, sensuality,  dating, divorce, and relationships.  In addition to Rapport Relationships, Dr. Rhodes is the founder of Visual Arts Reimagined (VAR) where she provides services to visual artists interested in entrepreneurship and leadership.

The 3 Steps for a Successful Dating Detox

The 3 Steps for a Successful Dating Detox

What is a Dating Detox?

Let’s face it.  We all get incredibly frustrated with dating.  Nothing can cause more pain and frustration than the disappointment of another relationship not working out.  Yet, if you stay aware, you may be noticing that there are repeated patterns of behavior occurring.  Perhaps you’ve had a year of zero first dates turning into second dates.  Or you continue to be attracted to narcissistic men.  Perhaps you have a thing for emotionally unavailable women.  Whatever the pattern is, you have to take some time to pay attention to the message it is trying to send to you.  A dating detox can be a wonderful way to get back on track and cultivate a positive mindset!

A dating detox is a mindful decision to take time for yourself and to reflect on what is not working.  It is also an opportunity for you to really think about what it is that you want and to take care of yourself enough to be fully present in the dating world.

We Generally have Negative Mindsets When We are Burnt Out

I know that this past holiday season was a rough one for my own mindset.  Being burnt out and then needing to show up for family was a recipe for getting sick and being exhausted.  However, most people fight the need to rest.  I made a choice to give in and rest this holiday season.  I am so glad I did!  It provided me with uninterrupted time to really think through what it is that I want in all aspects of my life and helped me successfully transform my own dating strategy.

You cannot attract the type of person or enjoy the process of dating when you are burnt out or emotionally unbalanced. Watch the video below to learn more about what a dating detox actually is and how you can start the process of recovery now!!

Learn about the 3 Steps of a Dating Detox

Interested in learning more about a dating detox? Wondering if you need one or how to start your own?  We are hosting a live webinar on January 9th at 12pm EST.  Join us!!

Register for FREE Now!
Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Licensed Psychologist and Founder of Rapport Relationships

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes is a relationship expert and licensed psychologist.  She provides dating strategy, consultation, and date coaching services to clients all over the world.  Dr. Rhodes is a frequently sought out media expert on the topics of seduction, sensuality,  dating, divorce, and relationships.

Are you in the right dating mindset?

Are you in the right dating mindset?

One of the biggest issues I deal with when screening new clients is hearing about their perceptions and mindset of why they are single.   Unfortunately, there are often more perils and complaints than discussion of how great dating in New York is.  One of the women I spoke with recently is absolutely gorgeous, in her mid-40s, highly educated but very over the dating scene.   Does this sound like you or someone you know?  There seems to be a plethora of smart, beautiful and single women in many major US cities but women seem to blame themselves more than men do.

Women Generally have Negative Mindsets

When asked about her dating life and why she believed she was single, I noticed her negative mindset right away.  Her story focused on her perception that men have been intimidated by her graduate degree.  She explained that while she has been open to meeting lots of people, she has always felt bored.  In an abbreviated initial consultation, here is what we discovered about her:

  • She is an explorer at heart.  This amazing woman has traveled extensively and values the experiences she has gained from these adventures.
  • She is physically fit and cares about her health.  As a triathlete she would like to share this experience with someone but when it comes to dating, she does not want to go on a date to a SoulCycle class or go for run.  She loses interest in men who suggest this early on.
  • Her career is in the helping professions.  This means she is a great listener.  Perhaps to a fault.

However, her version of the details above looks something like this:  I’m too old to date in NYC.  I am doing something wrong.  Men only want to date younger women.  All the good men are married.  

Research Predicts that Gratitude Increases Relationship Satisfaction

We have learned from years of research that your mindset and perception of other people will determine your overall relationship satisfaction.  A recent study by Kashdan (2017) found those who expressed more gratitude had higher levels of relationship satisfaction, commitment, investment, intimacy, self-expansion, and support for goal pursuit.

You do not need to wait to be in a relationship to begin to express gratitude.  You can express gratitude while you are still single and dating.

A Rapport Consultation Can Adjust your Mindset Quickly

Here is what we did in her consultation to help confront the myths that are holding her back in her dating life:

  • I’m too old to date in NYC became, “I valued myself enough to learn and experience life so I could become a great partner.” This woman needs to find someone who values self development as much as she does.
  • I am doing something wrong became look at all the things I have done right.  For her, men are constantly asking her out.  She may not be interested but expressing gratitude when provided the opportunity for a date helped her see her dating strengths.  
  • Men only want to date younger women became some men like to date younger women and other men want a partner.  Age is not the issue.  Finding someone at the same emotional and intellectual level is the goal.  
  • All the good men are married became a list of all the amazing men she knows above 45 who are single and a reminder of how many of her friends, who are all amazing, became single at different ages due to divorce or death of a spouse.   

What our Culture tells Women

When we started confronting her thoughts, she immediately felt an increase in her self-confidence.  This led to an honest discussion of the culture around her and how this was affecting her mindset.  Understanding her own needs, not NYC cultural needs led her to accept that she needs someone who shares her explorer traits.  Understanding how much our culture shames women who are non-traditional also helped her regain her confidence.  Owning her own fear of committing to the wrong person and empowering her to make mistakes and try anyway helped make the boredom disappear.

In one hour, we helped this woman change her dating life.  She decided to go on a date with a younger man who peaked her interest.  

Why Mindset Matters

While it is not always so easy for everyone the one thing we have the power to change is our mindset related to dating.   We all miss opportunities to meet people who can connect us to a romantic interest every day.  Are you missing out on these opportunities?

“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Licensed Psychologist and Founder of Rapport Relationships

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes is a relationship expert and licensed psychologist.  She provides dating strategy, consultation, and date coaching services to clients all over the world.  Dr. Rhodes is a frequently sought out media expert on the topics of seduction, sensuality,  dating, divorce, and relationships.

Birthday Dating Etiquette for Men

Birthday Dating Etiquette for Men

It has happened to me many times.  You meet someone two or three weeks before your birthday and awkwardness ensues as each person tries to navigate the expectations of an upcoming birthday before you are an official couple.  To make matters worse, men and women often have very different views of the importance of a birthday which can lead to major miscommunication and hurt feelings.

So, in an attempt for men everywhere to learn from my recent experience with a date failing to be appropriate around my birthday, here are the top 5 tips to handle a birthday like a classy gentleman.  Trust me, she is watching your behavior around this issue very carefully and the last thing you want to do is give her a reason to bad mouth you to everyone!

Birthdays are special occasions that require acknowledgement – Period

I know that many men will say they don’t celebrate their own birthdays.  Women think differently.  If you would wish a virtual stranger on Facebook a happy birthday, then you need to acknowledge your date’s birthday in some way.  Even if you have only been on a couple of dates, it is appropriate and not pushy to check in, wish your date well, and tell her to enjoy her birthday.

On the other hand, if you want to piss a woman off, wait until 6pm to call or text her on her birthday.  Or simply ignore it. Trust me, she has been mad at you since 10am waiting for your text message to come through.  If you are interested in continuing to date her, make sure to SCHEDULE the freaking happy birthday text message the night before so she receives it sometime in the morning.  It will make you look like a hero.

What Not to Do:  My recent date was on an email chain the day before with mutual friends.  Everyone else wished me a Happy Birthday but no email was sent from the date.  This is simply just rude behavior and makes your mutual friends feel awkward.  Rudeness is not sexy.  Pretending to ignore the issue makes you look like as ass.  Don’t be an ass.

Again, you never, ever want to give anyone, let alone a date, any reason to tell other people that you are anything other than a complete gentleman.  This is the definition of being anti-seductive to a woman

Ask ahead of time how your date will be spending her birthday

If you know it is coming, go ahead and simply inquire about her plans. She may tell you she is doing a girls dinner, spending time with family/friends, or taking off to travel.  Asking does not imply that you are to be responsible for her birthday – it is simple common courtesy and a good way to learn more about her.  Based on her answer and how you want to proceed with dating her, you can then plan AHEAD of time a plan to deal with her impending birthday.

What Not to Do:  Don’t freak out, avoid, be too casual or in any way do something stupid that she may misinterpret as not caring. Don’t be like my date who said he would call but never did or “blow hot and cold.”  Don’t be the date who verbal vomits his issues when he should be focusing on making sure his is taken care of on her special day.

She doesn’t care about the 47 things you had to do earlier in the day and will be far more sensitive around her birthday about you asking about her.  Again, being self-involved is anti-seductive.

Offer to take her on a date before or after her actual birthday

 Based on what you find out regarding how she will spend her birthday, you can then ask for a date before or after her birthday to take her out for a casual meal or do something a little bit different.  If you just started dating, it is not a requirement to splurge on an expensive mean.  Many women prefer a man who simply put thought into the planning of the date.  Activity dates can be great ideas for birthdays as they help with the potential pressure that may ensue when two new people get together around this special time.

What not to do: Avoid.  She expects you to take the lead so please don’t keep texting her for a week or two with no intention of getting together.  It wastes everyone’s time.

If you are really interested in her, a card, flowers or a very small, thoughtful gift is appropriate on the day/night of your date

This one depends on where you are in your own life, what it is you are looking for and how many dates you have been on.  However, if you are seriously interested in this woman, think about making sure you make a romantic gesture that show you are there to stand apart from her guy friends.  Trust me – all her guy friends will be there to buy her flowers, cards, and be a shoulder to cry on if you mess this up. They will also become your enemies if you disappoint her in any way.

Birthdays are opportunities to showcase the best of your seduction, sensuality, and overall dating skills.  Do not wast the opportunity by being selfish.

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes

Licensed Psychologist and Founder of Rapport Relationships

Dr. Jennifer Rhodes is a dating coach and seduction expert.  She provides dating strategy, consultation, and date coaching services to clients all over the world.  She a dating coach based in NYC and a frequently sought out media expert on the topics of seduction, dating, divorce, and relationships.