Yes, dating and having relationships during a pandemic means coming up with a whole new set of rules.
But these four age-old customs of love and sex are even less acceptable today than ever.
We are all a bit delicate right now: everything is NOT fair in love and war!
This is why you should clean up if you’re guilty of any of the following – and how to do it.
Tracey Cox says four age-old customs of love and sex are even less acceptable today than ever before
Flirt with someone you’re not interested in for an ego boost
‘He’s the human equivalent of a nice, warm cup of tea and a piece of toast when you’re hungover. My comfort blanket that I work on when I need a boost.
The rest of the time I pretty much ignore him. Although he seems good at that. ‘
This is how a 24-year-old describes her ‘okay but you’d never go there’ ‘boyfriend’ who she flirts with – when it suits her.
Most of us, if we’re honest, can (shamelessly) admit to being guilty of this.
Who doesn’t like to be admired? If you have someone you know is on your side, whatever the problem, who flatters you, makes you feel great, smart, funny, perfect?
This scenario can be relatively harmless and even mutually beneficial if both of you know the rules of the game: that you are never going to do anything but ‘breadcrumb’ in return for their compliments.
They occasionally get attention from someone they would like to take off their pants in return.
If it’s not right, is when the person you’re flirting with thinks there’s a real chance that every time you play with them, you’ll get together.
Break the habit: Make it clear that light-hearted flirting is all you have to offer by talking about any relationships you may have instead of pretending to be single.
(Do a lot, to keep the illusion that they may be available.) Spell it out. Say, ‘You are so sweet. I’m lucky to have a friend like you, ”so they know that’s all they are.
Ignore that one of your best friends has a crush on you
“She is one of my best friends and I love her very much, but not the way she loves me,” admits a 38-year-old man.
It’s no secret that she’s in love with me – many mutual friends have told me she’s made their confessions – but we never really talked about it.
“I don’t want to embarrass her or lose her as a friend and I just hope she eventually gets the message that we will never be more than that.”
The people I’m talking about are both friends of mine.
Tracey explains how to clean up your act if you are guilty of bad habits
I know one thing for sure: she won’t get the message until he tells her plainly. Even when he moved in with a friend for four years, she didn’t go any further.
This scenario is cruel.
It’s an emotional torture to be constantly around someone you love but who doesn’t love you and keeps leaving you with hope.
It’s particularly heartless in this case because the woman wants children and putting her life on hold for a relationship that will never happen could mean she could miss that opportunity.
I have told her as kindly as possible that there is no chance, but she will not give up hope until the words come out of his mouth.
Break the habit: The first step is to make sure all mutual friends know that you never intend to develop the relationship further.
Some friends secretly hope that you will end up together and actively encourage this.
If your friends want it, ask them to make sure your friend knows you don’t feel the same and don’t change your mind.
If this falls on deaf ears (as it did with my boyfriend), you have no choice but to face it.
It’s a neat thing to do.
Say, ‘Why aren’t you dating anyone right now? Why don’t we join you on some dating apps? ‘.
If they refuse, ask why. Even if they don’t confess, you can say something like, “You’re one of my best friends.
“I would like you to love someone and be very happy. Do not you want that? ‘.
If they muster up the courage to confess their true feelings, say, “I’m so sorry you feel that way.
‘I love you, but not in a romantic way. However, I hope we can still be friends because I love having you in my life. ‘
‘Glamboozling’: cancel dates at the last minute
‘This has happened to me so often that I no longer use dating apps at all. Even in the middle of a pandemic! ‘a 36-year-old woman told me.
‘I wash my hair, put on my makeup, got dressed, got excited about the date … then got a text from the guy asking for a new date about half an hour before we were due to meet. create or cancel.
‘It’s demoralizing and gross. Unfortunately, it is also very common. It happened to all my single friends. ‘
A dating site (Plenty of Fish) found that 58 percent of bachelors had experienced what is now nicknamed “ Glamboozling ”: getting canceled after already cheating on yourself.
Glamboozling refers to the practice of canceling dates at the very last minute when your match is already glamorous and ready to go (stock image)
It’s clearly ill-mannered, so why are people doing it?
Sometimes it’s general flakiness – you really forgot or double booked. More often, that’s because you covered your bets and booked two dates for the same night – a first and second choice – because you weren’t sure if the first would happen.
A third, even more underhanded scenario, is going on dates that you aren’t engaged in because it gives you an ego boost to know that someone would be attractive to see you.
Break the habit: Get a diary or set reminders on your phone if you are forgetful. (Although, really, you’re really going to forget a date with someone you want to date, and if you’re hooky, why are you going to arrange that?)
If for even less admirable reasons you are glamming up, just quit. It’s really fucking behavior.
Using someone for casual sex, but pretending there is a future
“If he had told me it was just sex, I would have actually been fine,” a 42-year-old woman told me.
‘But he didn’t. Instead, he promised the world and delivered nothing. He said he fell in love with me, but his actions did not match his words.
‘I was constantly confused. We were in a relationship or not? We had sex every weekend, but we didn’t do anything other than that. But every time I asked him, he swore it was serious for him.
One day he texted to say it was just about the sex and that he had met someone else.
‘Why not just be honest? It’s not like you have to lie to get women to sleep with you these days? ‘
It’s not just guys who are guilty of pretending that a relationship is serious when it isn’t. Women do it too.
Casual sex may be commonplace in 2020, but there are still plenty of people who feel uncomfortable and admit that this is all they want.
When the sex is great but nothing else lives up to expectations, it seems, well, rude to say, ‘Listen, I like sleeping with you, but nothing else turns me on, frankly.’
So you play a game. Stay around longer than you really want to once the sex is over, because it feels rude to get up and go. Pretend you’re interested in the fight they had with their boss because that seems like the right choice.
Until they invite you to meet their parents and you realize they don’t just think it’s more than sex, but hope for a marriage and kids.
Break the habit: Once you realize that the relationship will be physical only for you, make sure the conversation is over. Just say, ‘Hey, I’m not interested in a relationship right now, but I love having sex with you. Are you happy with that? ‘.
If so, you can relax and enjoy yourself without feeling guilty. If not, no one will be hurt.
Visit traceycox.com for Tracey’s new product lines and to learn more about love and sex. Her book, Great Sex Starts at 50, is out now.