Category Archives: Find a Relationship

Taylor Swift’s Blank Space. An Attachment Disorder?

imgresRecently a woman wrote me to ask my opinion of the “empowering” lyrics of Taylor Swift’s new single BLANK SPACE. She hoped it indicated that women as sexual aggressors demonstrates some sort of positive advancement in the current high supply sexual economy (the one that’s hurting women.) I was intrigued.

So I read the lyrics carefully. I read them three times. Then I watched the music video and my heart sunk.

The only thing female empowering about Taylor Swift’s Blank Space is the economic superiority she holds over her playboy. Otherwise she’s losing the mating game. Big time.

Blank Space is the story of a roller coaster love affair with a player. And it says more about attachment style than anything else. The song and video chronicle the abrupt female switch from infatuation to hate that comes when someone with an anxious attachment style meets someone with an avoidant attachment style.  In the video, Miss. Swift plays a gorgeous sex kitten living alone in an impossibly large English country manor. In drives her latest par amour, a young hot man whom she is smitten with and lyrically prophesizes “Look at that face. You look like my next mistake.” Then the two embark on a fantasy union — no courtship. Just cut to lust. But her stomach knows the truth as she repeats the chorus:

It’ll leave you breathless
Or with a nasty scar
Got a long list of ex-lovers
They’ll tell you I’m insane

The end is predictable. She sees another woman’s text on his iPhone (did Apple sponsor the video?) and goes into a female rage of rampage and destruction, the likes of which many, many women have fantasized about. She even attacks his car with a golf club in a not so subtle reference to Tiger Woods infidelities. Finally, Taylor kicks him out of her castle, only to see him coming back for more and the roller coaster begins again.

But this is no story of female empowerment. This is how an anxious attachment style plays out in relationships. Those who are prone to fear and pre-occupation in love relationships idealize love. They are, sadly, usually attracted to people who can’t give love back. In an effort to “make him love me,” they move way too quickly toward intimacy as a way to fuse the attachment. But it is all one big fantasy. Before long, real life steps in, (partly because the anxious attachers are vigilantly looking for threats of abandonment, checking iPhones texts, smelling shirts, etc.) With poor ego strength and an inability to tolerate thoughts of rejection, next comes the emotional flip. The partner who was all loving becomes the partner who is all hating. At that point, she can’t even see the good in him. She can’t tolerate holding the duplicity of her man, that all humans are good and bad. We all have strengths and faults.

The saddest message in the lyrics of Taylor Swift’s Blank Space, is that low self esteem is inevitable with repeated toxic relationships. Our traumatized heroine actually believes she is insane. In actually, she is a victim of some early life attachment injuries and replicating them in her adult life.

Bottom line: attachment injuries can be healed. Read more about how to heal attachment disorders here.

DR. WENDY WALSH IS AVAILABLE FOR TELEPHONE RELATIONSHIP COACHING. TO SCHEDULE, PLEASE CLICK HERE AND COMPLETE THE BOX ON THE LEFT. SHE’LL PERSONALLY RESPOND.

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WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT LOVE AND SEX? GET 50% OF MY ONLINE WORKSHOP “THE PSYCHOLOGY OF HUMAN MATING” USE PROMO CODE “LOVE 50” CLICK HERE

And, someone please tell that sweet angel Taylor Swift she should watch my video: WHY WE LOVE BAD BOYS:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs5KpdlA_L8

Are you a Relationship Professional?

imgresAre you going to iDate in January? It’s the world’s largest dating industry conference held at the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas on January 20th-22nd. Attendees include online dating operators, dating coaches, matchmakers and other relationship professionals. We spend 3 days collaborating, networking, learning and sharing tips and secrets to growing our businesses.

This year, I’m thrilled to tell you that I will be leading a pre-conference seminar that is part “Love Science Pro: The Psychology of Human Mating” and part business strategy for matchmakers. Find out more here:

To register for my special pre-conference seminar on January 20th, go to the iDate 2015 registration page, and click on: ADVANCED BUSINESS STRATEGY FOR MATCHMAKERS AND DATING COACHES

Hope to see you there! – Dr. Wendy Walsh

 

Dr. Wendy Walsh Named Celebrity Spokesperson of The National Domestic Violence Hotline

ndvh_bubbleFor Immediate Release: Celebrities Gather to End Domestic Violence

OJ Simpson Prosecutor Marcia Clark, Academy Award Winner Marcia Gay Harden and The National Domestic Violence Hotline CEO, Katie Ray Jones, among women speaking at the “Women of Influence, Cocktail and Conversation” event in Santa Monica this Thursday, Nov.6th. At the event Dr. Wendy Walsh will be named celebrity spokesperson for The Hotline. A panel discussion will look at DV from OJ Simpson, to Chris Brown, to Ray Rice and the NFL’s recent donation to The Hotline.

Tickets and Media Inquires: Cameka Crawford, NDVH CCO, ccrawford@ndvh.org 

WHAT: Los Angeles, Women of Influence Cocktails and Conversation, (Party and panel discussion)

WHEN: Thursday, November 6th, 7:00 pm

WHERE: KidsInTheHouse.com, 1453 14th Street, Santa Monica, CA, 90404

WHO:   Dr. Wendy Walsh, America’s Relationship Expert, Katie Ray-Jones, CEO, The National Domestic Violence Hotline, Marcia Clark, Author and former OJ Simpson Prosecutor, Shannon Humphrey, President, LA Black Women’s Lawyer Association, Marcia Gay Harden, Activist and Academy Award Winning Actress, Kandee Lewis, Executive Director of the Positive Results Corporation, Leanna Greene, CEO, KidsInTheHouse.com and many more.

SPONSORS: Retrouvé Luxury Skin Care, Lorimar Vineyard and Winery, Adam Corolla’s Mangria, KidsInTheHouse.com, and Lawrence Adamo, Summit Financial.

TICKETS AND MEDIA INQUIRIES: Cameka Crawford, CCO, The National Domestic Violence Hotline ccrawford@ndvh.org

 

 

 

FOR SINGLES: Sniffing Out Sincere Intentions

Young couple in loveI have received several questions asking how best to gage someone’s interest in dating. These questions often sound like “they haven’t called or proposed another date, should I take that as a hint?” or “I felt like things we going great but then they just disappeared, is that normal?” Sniffing out someone’s intentions from the beginning can be difficult and it is essential for us to hone in our detective skills. A person’s intentions for pursuing a relationship or other various relational/sexual interactions can vary. Not every person you meet has the goal of entering into a long-term relationship.

Navigating a new relationship can be extremely nerve wracking. You are getting to know someone new and there are no norms or patterns established. Trying to distinguish whether the person desires a long-term commitment or is just looking for a fling can be difficult. In most cases, there are several underlying signals that eager daters often miss. Only 30% of human interaction is based upon what someone speaks. That means that the other 70% is left for us to decode and infer. You guessed it! I am talking about body language, tone of voice and interpreting actions. During the beginning phases of dating, it is extremely important to put on your detective hat and read between the lines because you are just beginning to learn this person’s language and expressions.

I am a firm believer that if someone is interested and wants to date you, that they will make their intentions known. That means that they will be consistent and reliable, won’t leave you hanging or send mixed messages. They won’t treat you like the steak they are going to have for dinner, but will understand the value in taking it slow and building a good foundation. Furthermore, they will follow through on plans and promises, such as call or show up when they say they are going to.

Unfortunately, this does not describe all dating scenarios. Many situations are more complicated and require us to do our own interpreting. You can learn how to read between the lines and here are some classic non-verbal behaviours and cues to beware of:
• Hot and cold inconsistent behaviour: This includes falling off of the map, not calling or texting for days or weeks on end, or any other avoiding behaviour. It may be hard to identify at first because you are getting to know the person and are unsure how much contact to expect. But if the person is not reliable or consistent, they aren’t long term dating material.
• Trying to rush sexual interactions: If a sexual relationship is all you are looking for, all the power to you. However, if you are looking for a long-term committed relationship, statistics and research shows that it is unlikely to convert a primarily sexual relationship into a long-term connection.
• Charming words and over priced gifts: Pouring on the charm and flashing fancy things can be a red flag when dating. If the person is sincerely looking to build a relationship and determine whether there is a connection, they will make sure that you like them for who they are, not what they can give you. Obviously there is an exception to every rule and some daters enjoy doing grand jesters. But more often, my experience has shown this to be a ploy to impress and overcompensate.

It is important to know what you are looking for and what your own intentions are. If you are looking for wild sex and lavish experiences, then perhaps you are not looking for a long-term relationship at this time. But if you are looking to find a long-term commitment, it is unlikely that you will find it in the same places you find your junk food sex and relationships. The reality is that these interactions rarely turn into long-term committed connections.

If you want a different outcome then you need a different approach. Open your eyes, put on your detective hat, and get to work reading the cues that the other person is giving you. Don’t allow your hopes or your fears to cloud your judgment. Try your best to ground your observations in reality and even talk them through with a friend to see if you are misreading the situation. Your observations for good or for bad will bring you closer to finding love, even if it is with someone else.

By Erica Djossa, B.A., M.A.

FOR WOMEN: How to Stay Sane Waiting for Him to Call

bad newsYou had a great first date (or two) and think you hit it off. There has been a bit of contact since your date and you are waiting to see if things are going to progress. The uncertainty leaves you feeling powerless—like you have no control over the situation. All kinds of questions swirl around your brain. Will he call? Did he like me?

You have two options.

You either summon all your patience waiting for a call. Or seek certainty, contact him and see how it goes.

The first couple of months in a relationship can be incredibly challenging. You are getting to know someone new. The future is uncertain and no norms have been established to determine how often you will see, talk to, or hear from that person. This can be an anxiety-provoking situation for many, causing you to feel unsure about where you stand.

Dating is the beginning phase of building a relationship. It starts the process of forming a bond or attachment to another person. The closeness of this attachment is monitored by something called our “attachment system,” an incredibly helpful mechanism in our brain that aims to maintain our connections. This system is both helpful and necessary. However, there are two particular times when it can wreak havoc on our relationship; the early phases of dating and during a breakup.

The beginning of a relationship induces a cocktail of hormones and emotions that have the ability to hijack our brain. We spend exaggerated amounts of time thinking about, checking our phones, and even picturing what our life would be like with that person. Little do we know, all of these daydreams and hopes are actually building an attachment to person. Even if they are not physically present.

A great example of this can be seen in the show The Bachelor. Twenty-five men or women compete for the love of one person. All of the potential suitors sit around in the house and daydream about the one they want to date. Every moment of every day is spent forming an attachment to a person whom they truly know very little about. We sit back and wonder how people can leave so broken hearted after such a short amount of time. It seems absurd. But if you add up all the hours they put into thinking about, talking about, and daydreaming about that person—they have formed a very one-sided attachment.

So here’s the deal. He may or may not call you back. It is out of your control. But there are several things you do have power over. You can avoid building a bond with someone who is not physically present or committed to you. You can distract your thoughts. You can count the minutes or hours you allow yourself to invest thinking about that person and weigh whether the investment is one sided. You can decide to continue on with your life and not allow all your hopes and dreams to ride on whether he calls you back or not. He has to prove himself just as much as you do. He is auditioning for the lead role in your life after all, and it’s your job to ensure he is well suited for the part.

If he doesn’t call, he wasn’t well suited to meet your needs anyway. So don’t let him keep you from meeting someone who is.

For more on attachment styles and how to build secure relationships check out Erica Djossa’s blog The Love Compass and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

By Erica Djossa, B.A., M.A.