a Man

Dr. Dennis W. Neder is the author of Being a Man in a Woman's World. Got a love, relationship or man/woman question? He'll answer all letters. Write E-Mail for answers or visit:

A Case Where Truth Doesn’t Hurt
A Sense of Urgency
All My Men’s Is Friends!
Am I Missing My G-Spot?
At The End of My Sexual Rope!
Be Careful About Where You Get Your Advice
The Better Part of Discretion
Building the Relationship
Creating A Void To Be Filled
Cultivating Good Communication Skills
Divorce, the Kids, Family and Me
Ex-Wife In The Way
The Farmer’s Milk
Finding Out What Your "Type" Is
Flirty Girls and Mixed Messages
Friendships and False Hopes
Habitual Self-Sabotage
Have I Wasted My Life?
Help! My Boyfriend is the Girlfriend!
Hold Your Dates In Person
How Do I “Divorce the Ex”?
How Do I Know?
How Do I Know She “Loves” Me?
How Do I Tell Him To Tell Me?
How Young is Too Young?
I Can't Believe People "Like You"!
I Love Getting Gifts!
Interracial Dating
Is He Jerking Me By Jerking Off?
Men Won’t Approach Me!
Mr. Nice Guy
My Girl Flirts
My Girlfriend and Her Fast (Food) Boss
My Girlfriend is a Spy!
Physically Close, Emotionally Distant
Problems With Living Together
In a Sea of Messages, This One’s Mixed
She’s Going to Show You What Real “Hurt” Is!
Should I Let My Girlfriend Go and Get Married?
Should I Marry "The One"?
Too Shy to Try
You Have To Learn The Game!
We’re Not Communicating!
What We Have Here Is a Failure to Communicate!
When to Pop The (Other) Question
Why are Men So ... Infuriating?
Why Aren’t Women Better Lovers?
Would Setting Him Up Be Wrong?

You Have To Learn The Game!

Hi Doc:

I am seeking an answer to a dilemma. If you call a person you are dating and they don't answer, but you leave a message, and that person doesn't call you back after several attempts is that person wrong; especially after wondering if you still have a relationship?

After a month, I received an answer to my latest e-mail to her. My e-mail told her how much I missed her you and wanted to know if we still have a relationship. Then I made the mistake of spilling my guts about my deep feelings for her in hope that she would reconsider. Her reply was, "I am seeing someone else. He lives close by and he is nice. I hope you find happiness. I don't mean to be blunt, but would like to still remain friends."

When we last saw one another she said she needed time to think things out, but didn't bother telling me she was seeing someone else. I felt like a fool by spilling my guts to her in my e-mail so I replied to her, "Hope your happy...have a nice life"; and worse yet, all of this happened today on my birthday! I felt like crying but didn't. Instead, I got very angry and felt cheated and deceived.

I treated her like gold and this is the thanks I get! I have lost 3 more women to similar circumstances in the past few months. I am 52 years old, divorced, have no kids, and find dating at this age, that women are more selfish, heartless and anything else that defines a "bitch".

Am I wrong? Please give me some guidance to this repeating nightmare. Thanks for your time.

What am I doing wrong?


The better question is, "What am I doing RIGHT?" The answer: not much!

I too am sorry to be so blunt, but at 52 you have a lot of education you've missed along the way. You seem to believe that at your age (and the age of the women you date) that you should be past all of the rituals and games. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. There are very well-defined practices that we all have in our courtship. If you don't follow them, you're going to get dumped for someone that does follow them.

Let's take just a moment and consider why these rituals exist. In most cultures on the planet, men pursue and women select. That's the first rule of the game. However, let's say that you're at a meat counter and you're looking over the steaks for tonight's dinner. Which one do you choose? You probably select the best piece of meat in the best cut you can afford. It's pretty simple.

Let's get past all the romantic fluff and consider that women work this way too when it comes to selecting men. In effect, they select the best man that they can attract. However, what criteria do they use to make this selection? Certainly things like health, stability, financial wherewithal, height, looks, etc. come into play, but most men make the mistake of thinking that these are the most important criteria. In fact, they are not. What's most important is the guy that knows how the game is played and is willing to "do the dance."

Here's a fundamental rule that I talk about in my books, "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II": women don't want to be chased by a man; they want to DO the chasing. In other words, women want to find someone they consider to be stronger than they are in fundamental ways. They want to "date up." You prove yourself to be this guy simply by having the things she's looking for in her partner, AND playing the game.

Here's your challenge however: she's much, much better at this game than you are! She's spent her entire life studying every nuance and subtlety of it while you've (and most every other guy out there) learned very little, if anything. You are coming to this game without an education and expecting to play it as well as she does. That's a sure way to failure!

I suggest that you start changing your way of thinking and get that education under your belt right away. There's no reason why you shouldn't have the woman (or women?) you want. All you need to do is to learn the game and to start playing it. When you're ready to get started, check out my website for much more:

Best regards...

How Do I Tell Him To Tell Me?

Hi there,

I was surfing the net and came upon a website in which you answered some interesting questions. My boyfriend and I have been together for a year and a half and things are good between us. I know for sure that he is in the stage of life where he wants to settle down when he finds the right one. He made that clear to me very early in the relationship that he is marriage minded. I really love this guy and like I said we do have a good relationship. However, he never tells me how he feels about me.

He treats me well but he never says the sweet things that I need to hear. He buys me things, makes time for me and does put me first though. Only once he told me that he missed me after he went away on a weekend business trip. I am a vocal person and I say how I feel about him all the time, and I get no response in return!

When I ask him how he feels about me he says "I'm not good at saying things, but I know I will when I get married to the woman for me. The one gift I will give my wife is “I love you. I have never said that to anyone before and I want my wife to be the first one."

Here is my issue: its not that I want him to tell me he loves me; I know he definitely has feelings for me (although I do love him but I've never told him) I want to know how he feels about me. How can I make him be more vocal? We discuss marriage on a generic level. I know for sure I want to marry him but when I ask him if he sees me in his future he says he doesn't know as yet. How do get him to marry me? Should I just be more patient? By him not telling me how he feels...and him knowing that I'm so into him makes me feel as though I don't know where I stand. I want to be a wife and mother and I want that with him. What should I do because I don't want to hang on to a man's coat tails?


Different people use different communication "systems" in order to express themselves. There are three basic systems: "visual" ("show me"), "auditory" ("tell me") and "kinesthetic" ("make me feel it") types of people. It's obvious what's going on here: you are an "auditory" and he is a "visual".

When we first get together with someone new, we use every communication system we have (all of us have all three, a primary, secondary and tertiary choice), but after a while, we tend to revert to the system that is most familiar to us. This is what's happening with your relationship. In effect, your boyfriend is telling you that he's going to start using all those other systems once he's married, but in fact, that's not likely! People generally prefer to use their primary system when they feel love as it's the most easily understood and therefore easily used.

You have a few choices here:

1) You can learn these important rules of communication systems and learn to understand that when he "shows you" he loves you, it's the same as when he says it - or even tells you how he feels.

2) You can help him to better understand that you need to hear him express his feelings in order to feel loved yourself.

3) You can do both!

Obviously, I recommend that #3 is your best choice! However, any of them require that you get educated about how communication systems work. I suggest you get him a copy of "Being a Man in a Woman's World" as it goes into all of this in great depth. Further, I also suggest that you check my website for details on how to get your man to be more vocal about his place in your relationship. You can go here and find an article about how to "Get A Man to Answer Relationship Questions":

Once you understand these issues, you'll be in a much better place to deal with them.

Best regards...

Physically Close, Emotionally Distant

Dear Dr. Neder,

I read your answer on 'Trust' on the Internet and I hope you can help me.

I am engaged to be married this December. The problem is I feel that my fiancé is not emotionally available to me during love making. I know she has been emotionally hurt by her past boyfriend seven years ago when she caught him going out with another girl.

Deep down inside I think she loves me but I can't seem to sense the emotional connection when we make love. She basically gets straight to the point of what needs to be done during love making and get it over with. I feel like I am the female in the relationship where I need her to kiss, look and make love to me passionately.

My reasoning for going forward with the marriage are:

1. I do love her. I know her feelings for me are genuine. I ended other relationships in the past for this very reason: I didn't feel the emotional connection.

2. I think she has been hurt in the past so this is her subconscious way of dealing with that. But then again, we are getting married! What is there to be afraid?

3. She doesn't have a lot of experience so she doesn't know how to express herself. I don't think it takes experience to express oneself emotionally.

I am not looking for great love making skills here. I am simply looking for that gaze; that intimate kiss, etc. I can't recall the last time we looked each other in the eyes.

I have brought this up with her before but was met with angry replies: "I don't want to be told what to do" and "Everyone expresses themselves differently" etc.

I just don't understand why she would be so upset over this. To me it simply means that we are able to share our preferences and needs. Isn't that what marriage is all about; to get to know each other's needs, likes and dislikes and make compromises?

Please give me some advice on what to do.


Let's get this straight right here, right now: you are NOT responsible for what her ex-boyfriend(s) did or didn't do! Thus, if that's the excuse as to why she's "emotionally distant", both of you need to get over it right now. She's an adult, and as such, needs to deal with her past hurts on her own. You neither caused them nor are you the therapist that will solve them - especially 7 years later!

In fact, if you're going to marry this girl, I think you have every right to expect great loving making skills and intimacy! What has she been doing with her love life, just going through the motions like she seems to be now? What a terrible waste! Worse yet, if you're going to be her husband, then doesn't she think you deserve her best skills and closeness? Even more so, don't you think that she needs to be emotionally present with you - especially in bed?

I should as hell do!

You've got some very screwed up ideas on what is and isn't acceptable in a relationship, (let alone a marriage!) Let me set you straight on this:

1) Both you and your fiancé owe the other your emotional health and maturity. Without this, your marriage is never going to survive. I don't care how much you love her.

2) Both of your sexual experience up to this point should be leading you to giving the other the very best you have to offer. Neither of you should be holding back! That little habit is going to translate very directly into the marriage.

3) You've probably heard that sex isn't the most important thing in a marriage, but let me assure you of this: it's in the top 3!

4) Neither of you is responsible for the other's past. Likewise, neither of you should be trying to "fix" the other's past.

5) As a couple, you need to get the communication issues worked out BEFORE you get married! Right now, you don't seem to be able to communicate with her about this, or if you do, she doesn't seem to be getting it.

Finally, marriage is difficult enough without adding all of this to the mix. I strongly urge you to get this worked out right away BEFORE you get married - even if you need to postpone the wedding. This isn't just going to solve itself.

Best regards...

How Do I Know?


I recently got back into the dating scene, and have met interesting people.

One guy in particular caught my attention. The problem is that during the first month we would speak constantly and had great chemistry. Neither of us made any plans to go out, because we wanted to take it slow. When we finally made plans something always came up on either part. The 2nd month everything started to die off, but now things are starting to pick up, not how I would like. He calls me to tell me about his week and to ask about my projects, and suddenly I won't hear from him for weeks, then calls on the weekends past 10:30pm. We usually meet up and seem to be are attracted to each other but I'm afraid he might only want one thing. How do I know? I am so new to this!

P.S. We are both in our 20's and both of us got out of long term relationships I have also stopped calling, but when he calls I don't act bitter.



Man! Do I see this disaster-in-the-making a lot or what?

So, you "both" decided on "taking it slow", eh? Frankly, I'll bet that you told him you wanted to take it slow, and he simply agreed out of fear that he'd lose you. That is absolutely in the "top 10 stupid dating ideas" if ever there were stupid dating ideas! What exactly do you think you gain by taking it slow, or taking it fast or taking it anyway but how the relationship itself is just supposed to progress?

Answer: nothing.

Ok, now let's get something else cleared up here: yes, he absolutely wants to have sex with you. There, I said it. Pretty earth-shattering, isn't it? Did the lights blink on and off at your house when you read that? It's so amazing to almost be unbelievable!

Leslie, take a deep breath and let's get past all the fear and anxiety here. This isn't brain surgery, and nobody's going to die. It's just dating, that's all. You (NOT him) get to decide if and when you have sex. You might have all sorts of reasons why you don't want to sleep with him right away from being afraid of looking like a slut to feeling used to something in your past; but again, you get to decide when it's right for you. However, consider that he gets to decide when he's waited long enough and therein lies the trade off.

By trying to "take it slow" you're in effect, trying to manipulate both him and this situation to last as long as you want it to last until you decide that you want more - or to break it off if you don't. In effect, you want to keep him on the line until YOU get or don't get whatever you want; if you ever figure that out. Isn't that really the same thing as him wanted sex with you?

Answer: yes, it is.

Let me give you a slightly different way of looking at dating. It requires you to do some work up front, but it'll make your life dramatically easier. Here's what you should do:

1) Sit down and figure out what you really want from your dating/relationship life. Is it just to date a lot of guys? Is it to find a "soul mate"? Is it to have lots of experiences, or just have fun? Whatever your goals, you have to be absolutely specific here. Start by looking at how your life will be when you find exactly what you want. Use that model to work backwards and decide what traits you need in a man in order to have that.

2) As you meet guys, determine how they fit your model. If they don't fit, you don't have to waste your time (or theirs) and can simply move on. If they do fit, then find out what their model is, and see if you fit it. If so, start getting to know each other better and see how it works.

Obviously, this requires you to have some goals, but it will definitely help you avoid situations like this one. The final point to make is this: do you think this guy fits your goals? It doesn't seem like it from what you've said. It might be time to move on and find someone that does.

Best regards...

What We Have Here Is a Failure to Communicate!

Hey Doc:

I've been attending Massage Therapy class with this girl, and I really like her, but she won't give me anything except one word answers to anything I ask her!

We've worked on each other here and there, but not actively. I usually ask her how she's doing, after long periods of separation like I do for everyone I see. For instance I'll say "How's it going?" in the morning when class begins, and I'll say "How are you?" after lunch or something like that. She'll only give me a one word answer, stuff like "Fine." or "Okay." and she'll just keep moving by. She won't stop to talk to me, or even look at me, like most people do.

I can be outgoing, but sometimes I'm shy and secluded myself. Is there something wrong with me, my approach or tactics? I consider myself a real person, in the sense I don't pretend to be something I'm not. I actually care what this girl has to say, but I can't get her to talk to me. She seems sort of shy, herself, but I'm still not sure how to go about even striking up a conversation with her. Any help with this problem would definitely be most appreciated, even if it gets me a slap in the face.


"What we have here, is a failure to communicate!" (From the movie, "Cool-Hand Luke")

Let's start by getting the first question on your mind out of the way: "Is she interested, or not?" My answer: maybe.

Maybe this girl is terribly shy and just doesn't know how to act around you.

Maybe this girl is brain-dead and has difficulty putting two words together.

Maybe this girl has no interest and all and you disgust her, so she avoids contact with you by limiting her vocabulary.

Obviously, there's no way to really know what's going on in her head. In fact, women are notoriously good at keeping their real intentions and beliefs hidden.

Knowing this fact however is a real benefit for anyone that has ever been interested in a girl! Since you usually won't know up front what a woman's interest in you is, you have only one way to play it - as though she *IS* interested and you simply have to bring that out in her. If you misinterpret her interest, so what? You both can simply move on, (my term: "NEXT!"); no harm, no foul.

So, let's move on to your second question: is there something wrong? My answer: maybe, but not likely.

I don't know you and can't say if there's something wrong with you. I sincerely doubt that there is however. What I can say is that there's definitely something wrong with your approach. What you're doing is asking her "close-ended" questions. These are questions that can be answered in one- or two-word statements. When she says things like "fine" and "okay", she's avoiding anything that's very deep and meaningful. Why would she do this? Simple: because it fits the types of questions you're asking her.

What you want to do instead is learn to ask "open-ended questions." These are simply questions that can't be answered with a one- or two-word answer. Let me give you some examples of open-ended questions:

"Why did you decide to study massage?"

"What's your favorite technique?"

"What kind of practice do you intend to do after school?"...etc.

These are questions that both require half-a-brain's worth of thought to answer, and that will get you something more. If she comes back with another short answer, or says "I don't know...", then you don't have much to work with and would probably be best to move on.

If she dives right in and starts to answer your question with even a little enthusiasm, she's telling you (indirectly) that she's got some level of interest. Again, you won't know how much and that's why you still need to play this right, but at least you'll know that something's there, and you can tell her that you'd like to hear more about it over a drink one evening.

Best regards..

In a Sea of Messages, This One’s Mixed

Hello Doctor,

I need your advice on a little dilemma of mine. There is this guy that I've known for quite some time now. It started off with just getting together for drinks and then a couple times for dinner, but it's been over a year and I don't know where we stand; whether he just wants to be friends or something more.

Around our second or third time getting together last year, he brought up the topic of relationships. He mentioned that he has been in a 10 year on-again, off-again relationship with this girl. I asked about his status at that time. He replied that they're just friends now, but, that she says he's the one for her. Somehow, I got the impression that it was his nice way of telling me that he's not interested in anything more than just friends with me (that was just my assumption), but we continued to get together on a few more occasions, but nothing ever happened.

I decided on my own that we were just going to remain friends (I didn't want to keep my hopes up for anything more). However, every time I saw him; be it at a group outing or just the two of us, I still felt that bit of attraction towards him. I never said anything and just acted like a casual friend because I couldn't stand the thought of rejection. It wasn't until a few months ago when we were hanging out together like all the other times and having a fabulous evening. He completely took me by surprise towards the end of the night and kissed me. He said that he waited all night to do that. After that, we both left without saying anything more. An entire weekend went by and no word from him. The following week, I received an e-mail from him asking me about my weekend and some mentions about the kiss. He asked me what I thought of it and if he was too forward with me. I responded by saying that I didn't think he was too forward, but I'm glad it happened the way it did.

A month goes by and I still haven't heard anything from him, no e-mails or even a call. But then I saw him again at one of our group outings which he came over to say hello. However, for the rest of the night, we didn't talk at all. It wasn't until I was leaving that I went over to him to say good-bye and he asked me when we are going to hang out again. It threw me off and I didn't know how to respond, except by saying-- anytime, just e-mail me.

The entire summer goes by and nothing from him. We met up once again at another one of our group outings 3 months later. This time I spotted him and attempted to say hello first. After that, he did not leave my side for the entire night. I thought everything was going so well. We had so much to talk about and even mentioned about that very night he kissed me, except we never mentioned the 'kiss'. I made a comment about him having a few too many drinks that night and whether he remembers anything. He replied that he remembers everything vividly. I was so close to asking him about what happened that night and why he kissed me. I guess I sort of wanted to hear from him whether he wanted this to be more than a friendship or it was just a spur-of-the-moment feeling he had when he kissed me. But I completely chickened out and never asked. So basically, the whole night went great, at least I thought so. You could definitely sense the attraction between us. But what bothered me the most and left me with questions was when he left. All he did was to give me a peck and a hug and took off. This happened about a little over a week ago.

I can't tell if he's interested or not. Should I just forget about him and move on? Also, I wanted to contact him (through e-mail) to see if he'd like to get together. He's always been the one to e-mail me first and initiate getting together in the past. I on the other hand, have never contacted him first. Maybe I should at least make the move just this time and go from there? Because 'if' we do get together this time, would it be wise to ask him what really happened that night with the kiss. What should I do? Please help.


So, let me get this straight: you are attracted to him, but you act completely indifferent when you're around him. He even kisses you (likely a HUGE step for him) and even asks you about it later on and you're dishwater-dull about it. Even now, you're not 100% sure of his feelings so instead of doing something to find out, you do nothing but lay out a plan for him to follow in your mind (contacting you via email, asking to hang out, etc.), but do nothing about it - including telling him!

Can you say "mixed messages"? I knew you could!

Here's what's going on:

Yes, he's interested. He'd never have kissed you in the first place if he weren't. Then, he'd never have asked you about it later. Unfortunately, this guy is obviously not one of my students and doesn't know what in the hell to do from here! He probably figures that you're just not interested and has moved on.

So, what should you do?

You better start by deciding once and for all if you're interested in him or not. He's not going to just come riding up on his white horse, sweep you off your feet and lock you up in his castle on top of the hill! He's waiting for you to show him something - anything - that is a positive response to what he feels is a very obvious signal. But instead, what does he get back? Static. White noise.

Email him and tell him you want to get together. Don't wait for him to do this - he has already done this many times. It's way past time for YOU to reciprocate. When you DO get together with him, kiss him back for God's sake! Climb in his lap and give him a big, sensuous kiss. Express to him in something close to his language that you're interested too. You might even tell him directly that you would like to start seeing him more often or even try working on something more because you both are obviously attracted to each other.

If you continue doing what you're doing now, he's going to quickly lose interest. In fact, I'm surprised he's even hung in there this long.

Best regards...

The Better Part of Discretion

What's up brother?

I'm a 24 year-old man in the process of reading your 2nd book again. I've come a long way but am trying to get a better grasp on some of the conversation stuff, and trying to program myself act more "manly."

Anyway, there's a girl at work who I just discovered is single and who's since been increasingly flirty with me. Without being to presumptuous, I think I even caught her talking on the phone about me today. We've get along well and she's told me last Saturday that she thinks I'm hot, so naturally my "don't be a dumbass" alarm went off. Though a nice girl, she is definitely a socializer and a big gossip queen which makes me skeptical about her intentions (i.e. possible Attention Whore?). Likewise, this works against my perception of an "ideal woman."

I'm not asking you to analyze her intentions; I know you're no mind reader. However, I am asking you're opinion. How much of a challenge is necessary to remain valuable and not come off as an easy close? My interpretation is that she may be trying to get me to chase her (something I don't want to do and am very afraid of). Nonetheless, I see the situation similar the "when to call a woman after getting her number" dilemma. Ask her out too soon, I'm anxious. But too late, I'm nervous. Is it time to grab the bull by the horns, or should I hold out a bit so she can build me up in her mind? I'm thinking the former, but I want to be confident in my decision. Also, how much concern should I have for her "social butterfly" personality, especially since we work together?

Please help,


If she's overly gossipy at work, this might work against you. One of your first jobs; assuming you take her out, is to have a talk with her about discretion. Explain that you wouldn't be going out with her if you believed she was going to discuss it at work and that you expect her to keep her mouth shut and to be discrete.

You need to get moving on this right away. As soon as a woman shows you interest - especially in a situation where you see her regularly such as work - you need to move on that. If you wait, you look like you're uneasy with it. This is a turn off to women. Remember: women want that feeling of being swept off her feet. By acting quickly, you're telling her that you're no-bullshit and that she's going to have to do something about it or lose out.

When you ask her out (actually, TELL her you two are going out), give her two dates/times when you're available. If she doesn't take one of them, just say, "Ok" and turn and walk away. This is a powerful, dramatic event - especially if she's given to being an Attention Whore. In effect, you give her attention and then you take it right away. This tells her that she has to follow YOUR program in order to get what she wants. Then, avoid her until she DOES start following your program!

The best part of this is that it calls her hand. If she's only interested in your attention, you'll know it right up front! If she's interested in more, she'll be anxious to go out with you. Then, you can handle things accordingly.

Best regards...

Men Won’t Approach Me!

Dear Dr. Neder:

I am an African female who has very short hair and for these reasons, I feel that men are intimidated by me. I am 5'0 feet tall and very petite with a voluptuous body. Aside from my looks however, my speaking abilities are very polished and I also major in Math and Computer Science. I have been told that I am a very beautiful woman but for some reasons all the good looking guys my age won't approach me let alone look at me. I end up attracting the ones I do not like. The guys I do like often times do not seem to be interested in me. What should I do?


There are two issues with being approached - and being "approachable". The first is that it doesn't really matter how you look! Almost everyone is attractive to someone else. That's something of a prerequisite for the approach. However, what's even more important is being approachable. I can't tell you how many women I see just out running around (not at bars or clubs) that have their eyes down, never look at anyone else, smile or make any sort of human contact, are all wrapped up, looking like secret agents - then they don't understand why men don't approach them!

So, the first rule is to be approachable. But, how do you do that? Here are some suggestions:

  • You want to make sure that you have an "approachable attitude". If you're unhappy about something at work or home and are ready to bite of the head of the first person you see, you're obviously not going to be approachable. Having a calm, happy demeanor will help do make you approachable.
  • Make eye contact! Keeping your eyes buried in whatever you're carrying or on the ground isn't going to help you here. You need to look into the eyes of people as this signals your approachability. On the other hand, don't stare down other people. This is a subtle dance where you make eye contact, let it linger just a little and then look down and to the side.
  • Smile! If you're in a good mood, (and express it), people will be drawn to you naturally. Adding this smile to the eye contact noted above will help you greatly.
  • Keep an "open posture". If you're standing or sitting somewhere with your arms crosses, you're signaling the world to not approach you. On the other hand, if you have an open posture - arms relaxed at your sides or on a table for instance, leaning slightly forward, shoulders parallel to someone you'd like to meet, you're telling that person to approach you.

There are a ton of other body-language signals you can use, and for a complete discussion of these, I'll refer you to my book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World II".

Wait, I mentioned TWO issues about being approached, so what's the second?

Simple: learn to DO the approaching yourself too!

Today, there's nothing wrong with women approaching men. Not only does this NOT seem like a terribly aggressive action, it's easy and simple to do. There are very few men today that don't enjoy being approached, and let's face it, if you meet one of these guys, are you really that interested in dating him in the first place?

Women can use the same approach methods that men use. For much more on this please visit my website.

Best regards...

Would Setting Him Up Be Wrong?

A few months ago my boyfriend cheated on me. I stayed with him because I saw he was truly sorry. I look back now, and honestly regret not giving him time without me, to see how life would be without me even for a few days. He is starting to act like he doesn’t care as much again. I wish he would crawl after me, and in a way, do anything to have me. Even though, right now, he already does have me.

So my point is, would it be totally wrong of me to set him up to see if he would cheat on me again? I have this gorgeous co-worker who would act as the other girl. If he did, it would be the end of our relationship because there’s not an hour that goes by every day that i don’t think about what happened a few months ago.

I love him to death but it still hurts me so much. The girl he cheated on me with is friends with my friends, so i see her a lot. I can’t help but think about it all the time and he knows how bad it hurts me, but I still think he would do it again. PLEASE HELP!

Would that be wrong on my part?


Let's start by talking about you. Where is your self-esteem? I can tell you - it's in the toilet. Now, before you go, "Yep! That's right - it's because of my boyfriend..." I'm going to stop you. Nobody's self-esteem is about anyone else. It's always about ourselves. We make choices in our lives and choose to view ourselves in specific ways. We sometimes compare ourselves to others and then try to measure our own worth against that view of how we measure up. The problem with this is that we can't possibly measure up! Each of us is a unique combination of attributes that don't exist in anyone else, anywhere.

You seem to think that your trust for your boyfriend is something he either gives you or he doesn't. That's not at all what trust is! Trust (like self-esteem) comes from inside. Even if he "passed" this little test, you're still not going to trust him simply because you don't trust yourself. Your own self-esteem is so low that you can't trust him or anyone.

Likewise, relationships are fragile things. If you do something like this your relationship is going to suffer even further regardless of the outcome. It's already on the skids and you might as well just end it right here rather than trying to do further harm. This harm would not only be to him and your relationship, but especially to you.

I strongly suggest you don't do this. Instead, start focusing on yourself. What makes you think that something like this would ever be ok? Why are you so insecure that you'd have to test another human being in this way? Ultimately this is about revenge, not trust or security. Likewise, it totally lacks the other important aspect of relationships: respect. Since you don't respect yourself, you don't feel the need to treat him or the relationship with respect.

Start with you instead of him. Work on your own self-esteem and you're going to find that as that grows, so do your options.

Best regards...

I Love Getting Gifts!

Dear Dr. Neder,

I am 23 years old and just got my Bachelors degree from university. My boyfriend is 28 years old and doing a postdoctoral fellowship at my university. We have been dating for 7 months. (I mentioned this background to let you know that our relationship is more than a transient high school romance.)

During this time, we went through a lot: From arguing and fighting to having beautiful memories. He expresses so much love for me and has mentioned that we are in the road to marriage. Currently, our relationship is going very well and we love each other very much. But there is one thing that bothers me. About 2 months in our relationship he told me: "you'll see what type of a guy I am; I like to give presents and gifts every WEEK to my girlfriend because I love giving presents." As you see he raised my level of expectation at the beginning of the relationship and yet didn't get me much throughout the relationship. He bought me a jewelry container in the shape of a love box, a little souvenir statue from one of his trips, some chocolates souvenir from another trip, a little wish card, and has taken me to dinner in a restaurant to celebrate my acceptance to grad-school. In the last two times that we went out, we had a great time and the next day he would send me a thank you email. But that is it. This all happened in a 7 month period. He is a professor at university so I know he does not have financial hardship. He is also very mature so I can't say that he just said something without thinking. It also seemed to me that he was talking from experience with his ex-girlfriend 5 years ago.

I want you to know that I am not the type of girl who lets the guy spend all his money on me: I have paid for both of us in many occasions from restaurants to theatres.

Please don't get me wrong: I am not looking for expensive gifts, but I can't help of being bothered by what he told me and what he actually did. I am a person who enjoys little, simple things in life so even a 10$ necklace will do it for me. We were once talking about presents and I was in the middle of saying :"yes, I think you are also the type of man who like to give gifts, because I remember you once told me that...." and he suddenly interrupted me, as if he was embarrassed, and said: "yes, yes, I remember what I said, don't say anything, ....." I thought maybe he had got me a nice gift and doesn't want me to think that it was because of my reminder that he got it. But then time showed that he hadn't got me anything. So I don't know how to explain his reaction.

Overall, I am upset that he doesn't give me presents.

I know he loves me and wants to marry me. But as a girl, I like to see an expression of his love as well. Do you think my concern is valid? Isn't it true that gifts from boyfriends are demonstrations of their love? Should I ask him about the reason? I am sort of reluctant to do so because then I'll be pushing him to get me gifts and it'll no longer be spontaneous. But how should I make him know of my concern?

Thank You,


When people start new relationships, they do everything they can think of to show their interest in the other person. For instance, they tell them they are interested, they show them they are interested by doing thoughtful things; they touch to show interest, etc. In short, they use every method they can think of to express how they feel.

Each person has a "preferred method" or "modality" of being shown this love and interest however. Some people need to hear someone say "I love you" in order to feel loved. Others need touch and closeness and still others have to be shown. It's not that those that prefer touching don't want to hear the words too, it's just that we each have a "primary modality" that makes us feel most loved. As the relationship progresses however, a person tends to revert to the modality that he or she prefers simply because it seems so direct and specific.

You are likely a "show me you love me" type of person. Your boyfriend on the other hand is likely one of the other modalities. Thus, if you were to ask him if he thinks that he expresses his love for you, he'd say, "Absolutely! Don't you remember when I [insert his last expression of love here]..."

Frankly, I'm against gift giving as a method to show love. It's tied to a financial arrangement rather than something less cold. If you really need to have money spent on you to feel that your boyfriend loves you, I'd suggest you re-think that position. If you disagree with this, I suggest you sit down with a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle of the page. Now, list everything you've spent on him on one side, and everything he's spent on you on the other. Then, draw a balance at the bottom. If it doesn't match, (for instance, you haven't spend the same amount on him), then I'd ask you: why don't you love him as much as he loves you? How romantic!

That doesn't mean that a little gift here or there isn't a nice gesture, but why does it have to be based around money specifically? You mentioned that he's dropped you little notes here and there. Isn't that a loving expression? I'll bet he's done other things that are loving expressions too, and if you stop and think about them, you'll begin to realize just what they mean.

So, what's the answer here? Is he a liar because he didn't give you as many gifts as you expected him too? Are you a gold-digger just waiting to fill your closets with things? Neither of these is true. You both simply have different ways of expressing your love for each other.

I suggest that you talk to him and explain that you like being shown how someone feels for you. Little expressions of love and caring go a long way, and you need them regularly. Expand your acceptance of what these expressions are, and if he does something like this - even if he doesn't pay a dime for it - see it for the loving expression it is.

But, don't do this unless you're also willing to find out what makes *him* feel loved too! Ask him what things you do that make him feel close and loved by you and start working on yourself to insure he gets as much of this as he gives you.

Now that's a ledger that balances.

Best regards...

Friendships and False Hopes

Hey Doc:

I was going out with this 24-year-old girl for about 3 months. We enjoyed our time together but she fell for me pretty hard. Since it was only 3 months, I believe that her feelings were mostly infatuation, but I'm not sure now.

I panicked and broke up with her because I don't think I'm ready for that kind of commitment. I feel like I will hurt her later because I am not that experienced and still want to enjoy other women. Don't get me wrong, she was everything that I would need in a girlfriend, but my mind is not ready for a serious relationship with anyone. But I still love her company more than with most of my friends. I don't want to let go of her friendship, but I also don't want to give her false hope by enjoying her company too much.

She says that she feels hurt, but she understands where I am coming from and knows that we can only be friends. She has reassured me that I don't need to worry about her in that aspect, but I still do. We like doing a lot of the same things, which makes our time together very enjoyable whether we are intimate or not.

Is this wrong? Am I giving her false hope, even though we have reached a mutual understanding about where the friendship stands? Should I believe her when she says that she knows we can never be together? I mean it was only three months, and she's not a little girl. If she can bear this, I would love to still be her friend and kick with her without a relationship/commitment. What to do?



When you break up with someone; even if it's only been a short or informal dating relationship, you shouldn't give her false hopes by agreeing to be her "friend". People need some time to heal after these breakups and that takes distance. The person doing the breakup will often offer the friendship in order to help ease the pain, but in fact, this usually just gives false hope that things might turn back into a relationship again.

In your case however, she seems mostly fine with the "friends with benefits" arrangement. You seem to be concerned for her well-being and have made it clear that things are not going to go any further. I suggest that you might continue this on a trial basis, but keep your eyes open for signs that she's not handling things very well. Some of the things to look for include:

  • Pulling away emotionally
  • Beginning to use sex as leverage - for example, either offering it in order for you to come see her when you don't want to, or withholding it when she senses you're not fully "with her".
  • Acting jealous over things you do with other people - including friends and family
  • Introducing you to her friends as her "boyfriend"
  • Starting to make future plans for you and her to do things like take vacations, etc.
  • Acting upset, but telling you that everything is "fine!"

Here's the bottom line: as you both continue in this "relationship" one of you is likely to find someone else you either want to date or start a relationship with. As soon as that happens, it's likely going to put a hitch in the current plans. When that happens, you're going to wind up in another breakup where all the drama starts over again. Frankly, this is a scenario that can play out over and over again and will eventually hurt someone - likely her, but maybe you! This would be the time to fully end the relationship and move on for everyone's benefit.

Best regards...

The Farmer’s Milk


I have been in a relationship with my boyfriend for almost 11 months. Just the other day he tells me that he thinks we should just remain friends and nothing more. Two days later he called me and we talked about our relationship and he told me that I do make him happy and he enjoys our time together, but that he doesn't ever want to get married and he thought it was better to let me go now then waste my time and hurt me more later.

I replied that I don't think in absolutes and avoid words like “always” and “never”. I further explained that marriage isn't something I want now, but can't say I wouldn't want later in life. I think you spend your life looking for people who compliment and enhance your life and he does that for me, and from what he's said I do that for him. I know that and agree with your statements that there are tons of men out there who would marry me now or in 2 years from now, but I can't say they would make me as happy or share the qualities that my current boyfriend does.

I have wanted to tell him that I love him and haven't because I think there is that small part of me that feels he might not say yes. Then what do I do, stay with someone even though they don't feel the same way? Will he ever feel that way even if he doesn't now despite saying that he cares about me very much? Is there the possibility that one day he might change his mind and want to be married? Will he want to be married to me? I know life if one big game of chance-- I'm confused on whether to stay knowing that if at some point I want to get married and he doesn't that our relationship will end and I'll still be hurt...... or do I walk away now?

I appreciate any advice or words of enlightenment you can give me.


Man! There are a lot of questions there! Unfortunately, most of them would mean that I'd have to either read his mind or see into the future, and I don't do either of these. I'm good, but not THAT good!

Your boyfriend seems to have hinged everything on whether or not he's going to get married. That's a pretty poor excuse in my opinion, and it reminds me of a story:

One day a farmer walks over to his neighbor's farm and asks to borrow some rope. The neighbor says, "Sorry, I can't lend it to you, I need it to tie up my milk." The farmer thinks about this for a moment and says, "Wait, you don't need rope to tie up milk!" to which the neighbor says, "Well, you're right, but when a man doesn't want to do something, one excuse is as good as another."

This seems to be the story with your boyfriend. The "getting married" thing seems only like an excuse for the fact that he wants something else in his life, (I don't know what that is by the way). You need to pin him down on this and not accept that as an answer. If he tells you being married isn't his goal, just tell him that it's not yours either! What you want (or what you SHOULD want) is a great relationship with someone you love and respect. The format isn't important.

If he then gives you other excuses, go back to the farmer story above and realize it’s time to move on.

When a man doesn't want to do a thing, any excuse is as good as any other!

Best regards...

Ex-Wife In The Way


I am what I thought was the best-possible relationship but now wonder what happened.

I have been with this man for 1 1/2 years. He has been separated from the mother of his two children (never married to her) now for 2 years, yet she continues to be very present in our relationship. They talk all the time, which he explains is to discuss things about the kids such as his visitation, misbehaving at school, poor attitudes, etc.

She calls him all the time; sometimes with nice messages, other times just outright crude and hateful. The past week has been hell. She is now calling me or she has the children call to tell me he does not love me, she calls me a bitch and so on. He doesn’t acknowledge any of this. I will say I know her well and she is capable of lying to get what she wants. She even sat outside of my house the other night until he came home and they talked.

He feels guilty because she had the children with her, which she uses every chance she gets. His visitation with them only happens when she says rather than as stated in the court order. He tells me she wants him to come back and also said he needed time to think yet he also says he does not want to go back to that life.

The last several years of their relationship was nasty – she threw him out every three months or so, then would let him come back but he slept on the couch. They didn’t even have sex!

He keeps telling me everything will be ok but he has to deal with her in his own way. All of this is causing me to feel very unsure of the relationship. What is there to think about? Am I in love with a man who no longer loves me? Where do I go from here?


Frankly, it seems that the answers are already in your head. The real question is this: do you really want to live this way? Do you think that love will survive this for much longer? Personally, I don't.

You have a right to not have your relationship influenced by an outside party - even if that party is the mother of his kids. However, he has to take responsibility for that right just as you do. Unless he's willing to do this, there isn't much you can do.

The first step is to sit down and decide for yourself what you really want and need here. Try to imagine what relationships between you and your boyfriend, your boyfriend and his ex, her and you and the kids, etc. are involved and how the best scenario would play out. When you get that image firmly in your mind, you're ready for the next step.

Now, have a talk with him. Explain how his relationship with this woman is destroying the one he has with you. Tell him that you aren't going to live like this any more (you're not, right? After all, what's going to be left once the other woman destroys this?) Tell him that he has responsibilities to you and your relationship just as he does to his kids and this woman.

Try to work with him to craft a plan where he can have enough contact to see his kids, but that he avoids her the best he can. Don't simply give him an ultimatum; work with him to develop this plan. That way he's directly involved with it and will take "ownership" of it. Likewise, I suggest you come up with a plan when variations occur as they ultimately will. For instance, he may have to go see her when he picks up the kids, or they may have "family gatherings" together, etc. I suggest that you should always be invited to these - and that you go even if it's uncomfortable.

If you and he aren't able to make all of this work, you may need to cut your losses and move on, but at least give this plan a try first.

Best regards...

Habitual Self-Sabotage

Hi Dr. Neder!

Whenever I might meet a woman and things look good, like we're talking pleasantly, (and this is right at the first or second meeting) all of a sudden I start to feel "self-conscious". I can explain exactly what I mean by this: it is the exact same feeling I imagine I would have had if, when I was about 13 and masturbating in my room late at night, and someone would have peeked through my curtains and seen me.

I become utterly wrapped up (in my thinking) that this casual encounter, with it's casual talk is OBVIOUSLY sexual, and also it's OBVIOUSLY sexual to any casual bystander, whether that might be someone near us who is shopping in the same store, or whoever.

This has grown now to the point where I cannot relax and continue the conversation in a casual manner. I might think in my head, "Oh, I should just say to her right now, 'Hey, you wanna go screw?'" I’m not at all relaxed, and I get all pent up with anxiety.



This probably isn't as tough a problem as you think it is. What's actually going on is that you've been spending time (probably years) actually practicing and reinforcing this behavior. It probably started by happening once or twice, then you started getting fretful about it (believing it was coming on again) and added additional weight and emotion to it which gave it more importance. Thus, your mind continues to bring it forward every time.

Actually, the solution isn't really that tough. There are just a few things you need to practice to get over all of this. If you're consistent, this will not only go away, but will actually enhance your skills with women! Here are the steps:

1) Relax! Don't make this problem any bigger than it really is. It probably seems huge right now, but it's not. You're going to get it solved once and for all, so don't give it any more worth in your mind than it's really due (which is almost nothing)

2) Start to believe that you're going to get over it. See yourself (in your mind) as having complete confidence with women and being completely calm and relaxed while you're talking to them. That thing that used to happen is now a distant memory.

3) When you feel like this feeling is starting to come on, "reframe" that energy into something else. Simply redirect it into being excited to actually score with this woman instead of feeling embarrassed. You'll need to practice this in your mind over and over again. Try to sit in a comfortable, quiet place and just walk through it in your mind. Imagine looking at the woman through your own eyes, talking with her, having her laugh at your jokes, etc. Then, imagine that feeling of self-consciousness coming on.

Really try to experience it just as you would when talking to a woman. Then, at the instant that you get the feeling, turn it around into powerful confidence! Imagine smiling at her slightly like you know you're going to score and even saying to her "Wow - it's so obvious that you're turned on by me!" These are powerful images and you're effectively reframing one bad practice into a new one! Do this over and over again until it seems like second nature. You really need to practice this. For much more on reframing check out my book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World II" - it goes into this and many other concepts about power and confidence in great detail.

4) Since this usually happens after you've talked to a woman for a while, you might be able to use some negative reinforcement. Here's how this works: carry a rubber band around with you at all times. Never allow yourself to be without it in your pocket. When you're talking to a woman (or in fact, at any time you have these thoughts), excuse yourself and hit the bathroom. Take that rubber band out of your pocket and for just an instant, relive the negative thought. The instant you feel it, stretch the rubber band between your thumb and first finger, place this against your front thigh, pull it back and give yourself a painful pop with it! This is the punishment phase of the exercise.

Next, reframe that thought into something more powerful and confident. Actually imagine going back to this woman with a new attitude and talking to her without this burden. Then, while you're living that good, positive feeling, rub the pain out of your leg. This is the positive reinforcement phase of the exercise.

5) Finally, if you find that any of this isn't working for you, you might be mildly obsessed with this negative image and might need to visit a therapist (psychologist or hypnotherapist) in order to get help with this reframe. If so, and you're in the Los Angeles area, let me know and I'll refer you to someone I trust.

These tools will really work for you if you practice them consistently. You don't have to live like this anymore - go get it solved!

Best regards...

Finding Out What Your "Type" Is


I read your article on the web ("Getting Women to Approach You"). So here’s a question: I met this girl a few months ago and we have started going out. She is very pretty and can have anyone she wants. I on the other hand go right past all that and treat her like a person with ALL the flaws anyone else has, (right down to noticing a pimple), instead of complimenting her. She is obviously not used to this kind of treatment which is more lighthearted and fun, not clingy or desperate and it attracted her big time.

We've been on a couple of superficial dates now and I want to get to know her more. The funny thing part is, she just doesn’t turn me on! Amazing, huh?

For some reason she seems hesitant of me getting to know her. We know very little about each other and I want to take it further. Frankly if something doesn't happen soon, I am going to have to let her go. My feeling is she has some sort of trust issue EVEN though she has other male friends she hangs out with.

So, what do you think? Is this a problem with trust, or maybe just straight up fear of letting her real self come out?


First of all, it sounds like you've done a good job with her - congratulations so far. However, this has nothing to do with "trust" at all. It has everything to do with "type".

So, she's a beauty, but you just don't find that you're attracted to her. The first question is: why not? Here's the most likely reason: she's not your "type". One of the biggest mistakes that guys make is to assume that any beautiful woman is their "type" when in fact, most of them are not! You're finding this out right now. While she's nice to look at, she doesn't otherwise have what you need to be interested in her. Now the questions become: 1) is she really the person you are looking for, and 2) if not, can you turn her into that person?

Of course, before you answer this question, you have to answer another: what exactly DO you want in a woman? My brother, you need to have clear, written relationship goals, just like you have goals for other areas of your life. If you don't know what you want, the very first woman that walks by is the right one! However, looking for beautiful women isn't enough.

We guys tend focus very heavily on looks. Sure, you want someone that you're visually attracted to, but once you get over the way a woman looks, what then? Is she interesting to talk to? Are you proud of her and what she believes? Can you respect the things she does and her accomplishments - even if you don't agree with them? Does she want the same things you want out of life and relationships?

It's unfortunate but most truly beautiful women seem to have ignored their own intelligence and "well-roundedness". They have focused most of their attention on those looks because it has earned them the most attention. For example, how many "8's", "9's" and "10's" do you think have actually read through a newspaper in the past 5 years? Frankly, very, very few of them!

In my newest book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World II" I deal with this very situation - how to know if a woman is your "type". In fact, I created a "Rating Instrument" that will help clear this up. What's even better is that the Rating Instrument is available for download from my website for free! This tool will help you look at this (or any women) in 10 different areas with looks being only one of them!

I suggest you go to the website and scroll down a page or so ( ). You'll find the instrument there. Click on it and you can download your own copy for free. Then, run her through it. See how she fits. It will give you a "rating" of her based on your needs and interests. What's even better is that this can be adjusted to fit your own personal goals. It'll even help you know if she's close to your idea woman and in what areas she needs work. You can then decide if you're willing to put that work in or not.

Best regards...

Have I Wasted My Life?

Hello, Dr. Neder:

I’ve had a boyfriend for just over 1 year. For approximately the first 10 months of our relationship, he was seeing another girl as friends. I wanted to believe him but had doubts because he didn't tell me he was often with her and spent a lot of time with her. I was never invited into their friendship. I asked to be included, but was met with evasive answers and just no at times.

After a while, I insisted that either he include me (I had met the girl one time in the first 6 months for 10 minutes, then my boyfriend decided to leave). I still haven't ever talked with the gal. Now, he says that he does not see her. That may be so. I'm not sure.

Now, I feel that I am in a relationship that has no commitment. I want to get married some day to the right guy, or at least to a guy that wants a long-time life long relationship and friendship. I can see that my guy has commitment issues with me.

I don't want to waste my life. I'm 41, I've been with boyfriends for up to 3 years and then the relationships have dissolved. I feel that I've done things the wrong way.

My boyfriend is a good guy. I think he doesn't want to commit; wants freedom, and probably wants to see other gals, at least as pals. Maybe more, I'm not sure.

I know that he did lie to me last summer about a gal he spent a weekend with. After he got home, he told the truth. He said that he didn't want to lie to me; he did it because I got so upset about the other girl.

He and I talked today. I suggested that we should both think about if we really want to have commitment. He knows that I do. He's not sure.

What should I do? I just don't want to waste years of my life hanging around with him and maybe not meeting someone who wants to settle down.

Thank you so much!


"Wasted your life"???? You've had a number of good - to very good - relationships, and simply because you aren't married, you've "wasted your life"? I think that's INCREDIBLY short sighted!

Look, if you want to get married, why don't you just go out next weekend and talk to every guy you see and ask them to marry you? You seem like a nice person, and I'm sure you can find a guy that would agree. Then, you can get married and be happy, right? Then, you life wouldn't be a "waste", right?

Don't be ridiculous. Being married isn't when your life begins. In fact, marriage shouldn't be your goal anyway! It should be to find a great guy and build a solid, loving, caring relationship in whatever format fits the situation. Putting too much focus on being married, and not enough on the quality of the relationship itself will get you exactly what you've gotten so far - a boyfriend that is evasive, non-committal, etc.

Now, with that as an introduction, let's get to your question.

Women see marriage very differently from us guys. For women, marriage means family, status, relationship success (not really, but that's how many women see it), security, future, etc. Men on the other hand see marriage as pressure, responsibility, loss of freedom, loss of choice, etc. When you compare these views of marriage, it's not difficult to see why men won't often "commit" to marriage!

However, many men do agree to get married. So, what's the difference? Simple: men can choose this relationship format when they are with a woman that meets everything they want in a partner. What is that? Frankly, I don't know as it's different for every man. Your job should be to find out exactly what your guy needs in order to make that commitment, then, simple BE that woman!

Many women will hear that and say, "Well, I want him to love me for ME!" In other words, they don't want to change, grow or give anything to the man in order for him to want to give up his freedom for her. That's short-sighted thinking, and will lead to being unmarried for the rest of her life.

I suggest you get started on discovering exactly what your man wants/needs in order to be willing to make this commitment to you, and then, become this woman.

Best regards...

Creating A Void To Be Filled

Dear Sir,

I have a huge problem with my girlfriend. I really like her, but I don't feel love. I am afraid that, at age 25 I will never be in love again unless I brake up with her.

I don't enjoy sex with her - I'm always thinking that, "Oh, God I have to have sex with her tonight!" I feel sexual desire towards other women, but not with her. We have sex once a week. Further, she doesn't shave, and I just can't seem to get myself to talk to her about it.

The other issue is concerning partying. I don't like going out with her to parties. I enjoy the evening with my friends, but when she is with me I feel stressed, and I can't be myself. This is terrible. And we (or rather I) don't talk about it.

I need some help!

Thank you and best regards

Let's see here: you don't enjoy sex with her, you're afraid to talk to her about things you want (like her shaving), you don't like to be seen with her at parties - what the hell are you doing with her in the first place???

Many times, we want something new in our lives, but we're afraid of losing something we currently have; "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" as the saying goes. Let me tell you a little secret of life and love: the "Law of Vacuum".

There are many "natural laws" in the universe. Gravity is one of them. You can stand on a roof and proclaim that you don't believe in gravity; but, as soon as you step off, you're going to get a healthy dose of it! Like gravity, the sun will rise tomorrow, you're going to get another paper-cut someday, and someone will release another gawd-awful Robin Williams movie - all whether you like it or not.

One more of these "Immutable Laws of the Universe" is the "Law of Vacuum" which states, "Nature abhors a vacuum; and, if possible, will fill it." What does this mean? It means that nature has a way of filling its voids. Whenever nature detects a vacuum, it attempts to fill it with something. However, if no vacuum exists, no filling is needed and therefore nature goes off to perform some other task like cleaning out a trailor-park with a tornado.

Take a look at your closet. Do you have clothes you haven't worn for over a year? Get rid of them! Give them away to charity or simply toss them. What about your garage? Is it full of things you don't need? Dump them! How about your personal growth? Does it look more like a 3-day old beard? You're probably filling it with television, rather than making it open and available to be filled with other, more worthwhile things. In short, get rid of the dead wood!

At first, this seems extreme, but instead you're just making use of nature's law of vacuum. You closet will be magically filled with new clothes once the old things are gone, your garage will not stay empty long, and your personal growth will start again once the TV is off. Do you doubt this? Then, I ask you to think of the last time you cleaned house - where you threw everything away. Is your house barren today? I doubt it. You probably have more things now than you did before the house cleaning! This is the Law of Vacuum at work.

So, what about your girlfriend? Let's face it, you probably want someone you can enjoy sex with, take to parties, etc., Why not just set her free? Don't worry about love. Once you make room for it, and focus on it as a goal, nature will go about filling that void for you. If you need some help on breaking up, check this link to a recent article I wrote that may help:

Once you create a vacuum, you then have to make use of another of nature's immutable laws: the "Law of Asking". Here's how this works: "Ask and Thou Shalt Receive" (I think I read that in a book somewhere). What that book didn't say is, (but was implied) is "Ask intelligently!" That is, you need a clear and concise picture in your mind of what you want before you try to go after it. As I discuss in my book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World", you've got to get an absolute picture of what your life will be like when you've found the girl of your dreams. You need to describe who she is in every detail. Be specific and spend some time here. You don't want to use the Law of Asking to fill your love-void with someone like the girl you have now - that would be unpleasant! You might want to pick up a copy of the book and commit it to memory. It will lead you right through the process of creating your "love plan", and putting that plan into action.

Go forth, my brother - make use of nature's immutable laws to fill your life with the love you need, and let me know how things turn out.

Good luck, much love...

Interracial Dating


Hi. I’d like to hear your thoughts on the subject of interracial dating. I’m a young black male that has always dated women of my own race. Partly out of personal growth in my attitudes, as well as an admitted curiosity, I’ve recently been noticing, and have a great attraction for white women.

I’ve never approached, nor dated a girl from another race before, and I was wondering if you could tell me if there is anything I should say or do differently to approach them. I’m about to go into uncharted territory, and I guess I have a little fear of the unknown.

Unfortunately, we don’t exactly live in a society that’s very open minded. If I’m successful in dating a woman that happens to be white, I’m willing to put up with all of the stares and snide comments, just as long as we are happy, and deal with the challenges it brings together.

Any help or advice you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Thank you very much in advance.


I encourage you fully to explore women of all nationalities and races! When you find someone that is attractive to you, what does it really matter what race they are?

Ok, that's rather simplistic, but in fact, it's accurate - as we shall see in a moment. There are certainly those that won't agree with me and it doesn't matter what part of the world they live in. Some people have a problem with dating outside their own race. Of course, most often that problem is for OTHERS rather than themselves. If they found someone of another race to be attractive, they would probably make an exception.

Even some parents have difficulties with their children dating someone outside of their race, religion, socio-economic class, neighborhood, close family, (kidding), etc. This is due to a mistaken belief that somehow people of similar backgrounds will have a greater chance of success. Interestingly, many studies have shown that it's exactly the differences that often make for a better relationship!

Consider this: [oh no! here comes the science] throughout human history, there have been periods where huge numbers of people have been wiped out due to plague, climate changes, environmental disasters, and the like. According to current research in the human genome, scientists have discovered that every person on the planet today has likely come from a core group of just 2,000 individuals producing only about 1,000 unique genetic systems! That means that genetically, you're the exact same as every 1,000th person! Now, if you do the math, with 6.4 billion people on Earth. That would mean that you have 6,400,000 twins!

What's even more interesting is that the genetic differences between the races is almost imperceptible. In other words, race is actually a matter a person's perception - not reality. Where your ancestors lived had something to do with how you look, (dark skin, light skin, brown eyes, blue eyes, etc.) but even that changes as genetic individuals "diversify" over time. Today, there really isn't such a thing as a "pure" race of people!

As to how to approach white women consider this: how do you approach women in general; not "white" women, but any woman? There will be some women that will be very interested in meeting you as a black man, and there will be some women that won't be - just like black women! Do everything you're doing now and don't bother yourself with race. Concern yourself with the quality of the people you're approaching - that has much greater bearing on your success.

Best regards.

Is He Jerking Me By Jerking Off?


I need some clarification. My husband has masturbated taking a bath when I am ten feet away in bed. This upset me because I was right there and I felt as if he did not desire me or if he picked fantasy with masturbation over have sexual intercourse with his wife.

I have been trying for the longest time to get my husband to openly tell me; without me asking, when he masturbates because it turns me on and I want to know his fantasies. It seems as if he has a problem with being intimately open in that manner, but yet he will masturbate in front of me when we are intimate. I am so confused that I am starting to think my husband is addicted to masturbating.

I have also asked myself if he has a sexual orientation problem. Before we got married I asked him to stop looking at porn on the internet and he said ok. Well I was on the computer one day and found a few down loaded porn movies. Well, I confronted him by asking him if he had been going to those sites or not and he bluntly lied to my face. Then I told him, come see I have something to show you. Then he blew up.

Also, when husband and wife watch a porn movie together and then have sex, is the husband enjoying and thinking of his wife or not? I know it is only natural to find someone attractive, but I think that going to the extent of thinking of them and getting off is wrong and some what cheating in a marriage.

Well, I think you know what I mean.


Let's see here, you confront him, complain to him, henpeck him, nag him, spy on him and you're surprised that he is underground about all of this? What in the hell are you thinking????

You have a very severe insecurity issue going on here. Yes, I already know what you're thinking, "But *he* caused it!" No my dear, he didn't cause it - you obviously had it before he met you. This has nothing to do with him - it has everything to do with you. More on this in a moment.

Let's deal with the masturbation issue first.

Many people (both men and women) sometimes prefer masturbation over sex. Frankly, it's just easier and quicker! 90% of the time, men do most - if not all - of the work during sex. Many women feel it's fine to just lie there and be "done". If a guy's going to have to do all the work anyway, it's often just easier to do one job rather than two - or more. Let's face it; you girls are very complicated when it comes to sex.

All of this doesn't mean that he doesn't love you or find you sexy. In fact, it has nothing to do with that at all. It's just a matter of convenience. Further, when you're spending your time concentrating on someone else, it's very difficult to work on your own sexuality! That is what private masturbation can be all about - growing one's own sexuality.

Now, let's talk about the porn, fantasies, etc.

If you've read many of my articles, you're going to learn something very important: men are not monogamous. That's just the way it is. Neither your husband, me, your father, or any other man is monogamous by nature. That's the way we're wired. However, we can CHOOSE to be. This is obviously what your husband has chosen.

By looking at pornography and fantasizing away from you, he's not treating you or your relationship with disrespect at all. In fact, he's helping to insure that his promise about being monogamous to you is kept! Porn and fantasy are safe ways for men to explore our polygamous natures while still being faithful to our partners. Stop seeing this as a threat, and start seeing it as the benefit to your marriage that it is!

For you to set him up to fail by spying on him, asking him about it and then busting him on it, all you're really doing is telling him that he has to be better at hiding it all! Is that really what you want: for your husband to work even harder hiding it from you, or would you rather have him bring it out in the open and feel comfortable with it - and you? I thought so.

Now, back to you:

If you think you're going to be able to nag him into only doing sex the way you want, forget it. What you're actually doing is killing off your own sex life with him! Do you think all of this makes you sexier in his eyes? Don't count on it. You're actually pushing him further and further away by introducing all sorts of added stress into your marriage.

Here's my suggestion: (warning: this is going to mean that you're going to have to grow up): let up on him completely about the porn and masturbation. In fact, you should even encourage it. Tell him that you've come to your senses about it, and you want your sex life together to be rich and full, and that you realize that anything that helps him with his own sexuality also helps your sex life together. At the same time, I suggest that you feel free to masturbate too. Use this time to grow your own sexuality. Trust me, you need it.

Then, when you get together and have sex, make it fun! Take away the pressure and get back to the exploring that you use to have when you first got together. Have lots of great, powerful, playful, fun sex, and feel free to masturbate together if you enjoy that. Find out (again) what he wants in the bedroom, and tell him what you want too - even if it seems "unusual". Frankly, there's nothing "unusual" in sex - it's all been done before. Give him room and freedom to enjoy himself and it will all come back to you in bed.

Finally, start working on yourself. You don't need to feel under attack by any of this. It can be a very powerful way to grow your marriage - or you can continue to do what you've been doing all along and work to break it down. The choice is yours.

Best regards...

Why are Men So ... Infuriating?


I read one of your articles and I have a question about men. I am seeing repeated behavior by more than one man, i.e. my nephew, my other mail friends, my daughters boyfriend, etc., etc.

Here's the question or the situation that baffles (and infuriates) me.

Men want and sometimes demand that there not be just one woman in their life. They want to date multiple women and have their girlfriend’s approval of it. But, once the man decides he loves you (the woman) & wants you in their life long-term they don't want their girlfriend with any other man, whether dating them, talking to them or sex - especially sex. The man gets all jealous and just can't stand knowing their girlfriend or the woman they love is with another man. AND YET the man still wants to see other women!! The man will run or get all bent out of shape if they even detect that the woman wants things to be monogamous.

My boyfriend whom I have been dating for 7 months has decided he loves me, wants me in his life long-term, wants to plan a few long range plans together, has even played with the idea that he wanted me to move in with him. But....we are both shy about marriage because of our past horrible experiences in marriage. We decided not to live together as we both enjoy our own "space" and alone time. He has made the statement several times that he would be jealous and hurt if I dated other men and he would prefer that I not. I have not dated others mostly because I have no interest in others right now but it infuriates me that I'm supposed to be ok with him continuing to date and seek out new women! Now I could go on dates with other men right now.....but honestly I would be doing it to make him jealous and because "if he can, then I can". I don't believe those are legitimate reasons to date other men. Also....out of respect and the love I do feel for this man I choose not date as I know it would cause him unhappy feelings which I want him to be happy.

I could go on about how I am mistreated etc......but it's not even about all that. I am choosing not to date others so it is MY choice. What freaks me out is why do men do this behavior? They want their girlfriend all to themselves while they share themselves with multiple women!



I'm going to answer this question for you, but first a warning: you're not going to feel any better by hearing this answer. So, if you're looking for relief, I suggest that you stop reading right here.

Here are the true facts, despite what the media, feminists, feminized scientists, etc., would have you believe: men are not monogamous by nature but women are. That's the way it is. In fact, that's the way it is in 95% of all mammalian species on earth.

But, there's an important reason for all of this: up until recently (about the turn of the 20th century), the infant mortality rate in humans was about 50%! That's an amazing number. We have only survived by practicing this concept.

Thus, men are biologically programmed to seek out multiple female partners in order to keep our genes going on to the next generation. It's part of our wiring! By having multiple partners (thus producing multiple offspring) males are increasing their chances of sending their biological benefits forward. Women on the other hand have a completely different motivation. By trying to attract a partner to help her raise her children, she is helping to not only insure her own survival, but that of her children. Two adults allow for one to gather food while the other cares for the young. It also offers greater defense options, etc.

It's interesting that many men don't have this "instinct" because there are many men that will get in and help raise the kids for them (we call these "sub-dominants"), thus giving them (the "Alpha Males") a chance to continue mating. However, there aren't many other women that will jump in and raise both their own kids and those of another mother. That's why the "instinct" in women to be monogamous is so strong.

Did you know that the "pair bond" (marrying or partnering for life) is actually very new in the human experience? It's true. We've been on this planet for about 7 million years according to recent discoveries. However, we've only been pair bonding for about 5,000 of those years! If you do the math, that means that we've only been doing monogamy for 0.0714% of the time we've been here! That's 7-100ths of 1 percent of the time! It's also not enough time to change how we are biologically wired.

So, why then is it ok for him to be out hunting and not for you?

While it's not considered politically correct to say this, the fact remains that we are following our biological programming. Just like you - you could date other men but you choose not to. You wouldn't find the fulfillment you want in doing so. You get the most satisfaction from your relationship when it's solid - and monogamous. It angers you that your boyfriend doesn't seem to feel the same way, but consider that he’s just following his biological programming. He doesn't want you to date either because he understands these points deep-down. He may not be able to finger exactly why he feels this way as I've done however. In effect, it just isn't "right" and you will appear as a less-appealing partner to him if you did do this.

Ok, so you've stayed with me this far. Now I have something of a reward for you: an answer to your dilemma of how to get men (including your man) to choose monogamy over their own biological programming: don't try to force him to be monogamous. Simply find out specifically what it is that he needs in his life to make that choice and become that woman!

Commitment and monogamy are very stressful to men. It works directly against our biology and we fight it for that reason. Many men DO choose monogamy over biology to get something they desire even more however. If you can understand what those things are for your boyfriend and simply be that woman, he will be willing to make that choice too.

Best regards...

Why Aren’t Women Better Lovers?

Hello Dr.:

I read an article you wrote recently were you stated that most women aren't good lovers. Can you explain this to me? Why aren't we good lovers and what's the short answer on how we can be better ones?



That’s a great question! Women are generally not good lovers for a number of reasons:

First, we men don't really demand it of women. Most men are just happy that have someone to have sex with! The person's abilities aren't that critical. Of course, after you’ve been with someone for awhile, it can be that very lack of skills that starts affecting things both in and out of the bedroom.

Second, women spend so much time with their minds on other things; and you know exactly what I'm talking about: "I wonder if my ass looks fat in this light...I hope my hair is covering my face enough...Am I making enough noise?...Am I making too much noise?...Am I moving just right?...etc...etc....etc." All of this is going on exactly when she should be concentrating on herself sexually as well as her lover.

A third reason why women aren't generally good lovers is that they get most of their instruction from other women in women's magazines. Most men read these and just chuckle to themselves. They rarely represent men's sexualities very well at all! If you want to learn how to be a better lover, go to a man for your education - not another woman.

A fourth reason is called the "slut factor". Many women are afraid to let go enough to really learn to enjoy themselves - and to please their partners. Most women have a huge range of sexual expression, but limit themselves in that expression for fear of looking slutty. We men find that frustrating and ridiculous.

A fifth reason is that women are afraid to tell men what they want. Many women say, "Well, he should just know!" Let me assure you on this point: there is not a big red flag on your ass that goes up when you have an orgasm! Many men just don't know were you are in the entire process and often don't know when you've made it. Our climaxes are very obvious; yours are often not obvious - sometimes even to you!

Sixth, women don’t really understand men’s sexualities and our needs. Let me state that there is as much nuance in men’s sexualities as there are in women’s but, we express it very differently. Further, women don’t really want to believe this! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to show the same woman the same trick over and over again only because she didn’t want to believe me!

There are other reasons, but I think you get the point.

As far as a "short" answer to what makes a woman a good lover, the answer learning – and accepting – these facts, and working to correct them. I've been with many, many women and have learned how to get them past these things, but it takes work; far more than it should! Many of these women learn to climax just from being touched, or even told to for instance. These are incredibly sexual women, but they are no different from other women - they've only learned how to let themselves be that way. Women have an incredible range in sexuality, but your own minds limit you tremendously.

So, the short answer is; there really is no short answer. Just come over here, get in bed and I'll show you.

Best regards…

Building the Relationship

Hey Doc,

I received the first book ("Being a Man in a Woman’s World") last week or so - excellent work! I’m already starting to adjust parts of my approach with women and am starting to see real results! Thanks, man!

I've been seeing this woman for a few months, and things are going well. The problem is, there's a lot of extremely stressful stuff that's just started in my life, and it would be helpful for me to talk with her about it.

My question is, how the hell do you walk that line where, on one side sits you could fall out of favor as her "man" by seeming to complain about things (which I’m not doing at all), and the other side seems to be your sanity, (or lack there of)? I don’t want to appear needy or weak and have her pull away.

I go to the gym, run, play ball and it goes away for a little while, but then it's back. The stress is so high that I need some support in all of this and just have to get it off my chest.

Thanks for your help.


I fully understand about this stress - and the need to share it with a partner. This might be a good time to start growing your relationship with her because only within the context of an actual relationship would this be acceptable! Obviously, if you start trying to unload this now, she might get the impression that you’re more a complainer than a man of action.

On the up side, (as long as this is what you think you want), opening up about some of the stressful things in your life is one sure way to being the processing of growing the relationship! Women want to be part of their man’s lives. By opening up in a clear, directed way, you’re effectively "letting her in" rather than looking wimpy.

You might start by saying, "Man, things have really been stressful recently!" She's likely to ask you how and you can give her just the thumbnail sketch about it. You can even ask her what she does when she gets overwhelmed. This gives her a chance to "out herself" before you! Thus, you maintain the male part of this relationship and she gets to open up enough to give you some room. Do you see how this works?

By the way, I'm assuming that you already have at least a sexual relationship with her. If she sees you as only a friend (no sex) then she likely would never want to be bothered with your issues. That's a good sign it's time to dump her and move on, thus relieving one area of stress for you.

Best regards...

Flirty Girls and Mixed Messages

There’s this girl at work that I’ve been flirting with for almost 9 months now. I never made a move because she has a boyfriend. Despite this, she’s always been very flirty and playful with me - much more so than with other guys at work.

Recently, she gave me her cell phone number and asked me to call her. That sounds great, but it was right after she moved in with her boyfriend!

I don’t know how to play this. Do I have a chance with this girl, or should I just move on and forget her? Can you help?


Yes, I think I can help you here.

There are a number of things going on. First of all, it sounds like this girl is attracted to you at least a little, but consider that she’s also very attracted to your attention. We call this the “Attention Whore” or “AW”.

She gets your attention with all the flirting, but uses it to make herself feel attractive to men other than her boyfriend. AW’s often define their own worth by how they interact with men! Frankly, this isn’t very respectful to her boyfriend or her relationship, but he’s at least part to blame for letting it happen in the first place. I’m not going to spend any more time talking about the boyfriend – he can write to me if he wants answers – this is about you!

So, why did she give you her phone number? Is there a chance she might go out with you?

Yes, there’s a chance, but it’s a very small one. She’s living with someone, and while you don’t know exactly what their intentions are (perhaps she moved in with him to save some money, or they may have moved in together as a prelude to getting married), you don’t have to make assumptions here either.

What I suggest you do is to get somewhat scarce for a month. Obviously, you can’t take that much time off of work, but you can get distant from her. In fact, this is a great time to start finding other targets that you’re interested in and start dating.

What you want to do is to be pleasant towards her, but otherwise to avoid her. Give yourself about a month and see how she reacts.

If she also pulls way back and seems to start ignoring you (classic AW behavior, by the way), you’ll know that she’s only interested in you for how you make her feel – wanted and desirable. If she chases you or turns up the heat, you’ll know that her interest is more than just the fact of your attention.

By the way, after this month (if she’s been pursuing you rather than hiding) you can turn things up – way up – using the “Blitzkrieg” technique from “Being a Man… II”.

Best regards...

Cultivating Good Communication Skills

I've read your articles on various websites and I have a great question for you!

How do I create the opportunity to cultivate communication skills? I live in a small town, I run my own business, but there isn't anywhere to "hang out", I am a vibrant being that resonates well with people, but those social skills have been shelved. I believe that they just need to be dusted off, greased and put to work again...but how?

Not having "practice" in communication is nibbling at my self confidence as I venture out to job interviews. This also overflows into any future dating relationships. I typically turn down dates...what on earth would I say? I've never been shy, and now I'm almost afraid to open my mouth.

Your recommendations would be very much appreciated. Thank you for your time and help!


That *is* a great question!

To begin with, people often make the mistake of thinking that being a "good communicator" means that you have a lot of interesting things to say. Frankly, nothing could be further from the truth. Instead, what really works for communications is learning how to draw others out - how to get other people to talk instead, and being a good listener.

The #1 rule of dealing with people is simple: people are primarily interested in themselves. This isn't necessarily a selfish thing however. It's just that what else do each of us have in perspective? We know our selves intimately and are "experts" on talking about what we know well.

Thus, you should never turn down dates - ever! This is a chance to work on these communication skills and build them. The real question then, is how do you do that?

It's really very simple. You learn to ask "open ended" questions. An open ended question is one where the answer is something more than "yes" or "no". For instance, if you ask someone, "Do you like your job?" they can answer "yes, I do", but where do you go from there?

Instead, if you ask, "What do you like most about your job?" you've just opened up a potentially lengthy discussion! This is how you draw people out - by sincerely wanting to learn about them - their wants, their needs, their dreams, their histories, etc. As you get to know people more deeply, you'll be surprised at how they come to believe that you are really a great conversationalist!

Here are two articles from my website that talk even more about this:

Best regards...

My Girlfriend and Her Fast (Food) Boss

Help Doc!

My girlfriend and I have been dating for 2 months. Everything was perfect for the first month, and then she got a job. Ever since then I hardly ever see her. She is a manager at a fast food restaurant. The store closes as 12:00am, and she doesn't usually get home until 2:30 or 3:00am.

One day she got home at 6:00am, and I asked her why. She told me that she was talking to her boss. I asked her where they were talking and she said I didn't want to get in his truck so invited him into my car. I reluctantly said ok, but it seems that whenever we do see each other, that all I hear about is him. She told me that he was happily married, which eased my pain somewhat.

Well about a week ago I surprised her, by coming home for lunch. I found her lying in our bed with a bunch of crumpled up papers, and her "toys". I bent over to pick up the papers, and she attacked me. Well I had to hold her off just enough to read something on the paper that was a little disturbing to me. It was a thing called true love. Apparently it's a little game where you take the letters in a persons name and try to see if it's a perfect match. It seems a little childish to me, but whatever.

On the paper was her bosses name and her name with the true love thing. I was obviously floored by this. I asked her why and she told me that she was mad at me, because whenever she comes home late, I'm upset, so she was curious. She told me it was no big deal, and that she meant nothing by it. I asked her why she tried to take it away from me if it wasn't a big deal and she said that she was embarrassed and she didn't want me to see it.

Yesterday I found out that now her boss is getting divorced because his wife cheated on him, and I was very intrigued by this. I'm stuck I want this to work out, but when I try to get her to see my point of view, she says I'm overreacting, or I only get one word answers. She is 22 years old and she still acts like a child, she doesn't think that she should have to call to let me know she's ok.

Please help me.


Let's begin by clearing the air here: make absolutely no mistake about this: your girlfriend either has or is planning on sleeping with her boss. There's no gray area here at all. This is an absolute - trust me on this.

The real question now is how you handle it. It appears that you and she are living together. If so, I have to ask you what in the hell you were thinking when you approved that little situation! You've only been together for 2 months and you're already living together?? Here's exactly why she's out chasing someone else: she already owns you! She doesn't have to do any more work at all and has everything from you she wants. Now, she's out looking for someone she doesn't have, and a married guy is the perfect opportunity.

This isn't a matter of trust - it's a matter of respect. She has no respect for you or the relationship which is exactly why she put zero effort into making you feel better. She doesn't care how you feel! This is all about HER and HER FEELINGS.

I suggest that you get your testicles back from her purse and put them where they belong. Then, pack up her stuff and put it on the porch after changing the locks. Now, you have a place to negotiate from. Tell her that if she wants back in the house - and back in your life - that she has a ton of work to do. The first thing is to come completely clean about what's going on (which had better include a confession about her and the boss - not some watered-down version, but the truth), the second thing is to call the boss with you right there and tell him to piss-off, and third to quit her job and go find another. Trust me - fast food jobs are a dime a dozen - even as a manager.

Even better, I suggest that you just kick her to the curb and move on. As you said, she is a child. It's time for you to start dating women! If you're not sure how to find these women, check out my books, "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II".

Best regards...

Be Careful About Where You Get Your Advice

Dear Doc,

If a woman seems to like me could she be genuine or do women sometimes like to play mind games and tease/flirt when they have no interest/intention of dating? I have been talking with a woman at my office building on breaks and she really seems to want to be with me and tells me about her personal life, yet I am wondering if she is sincere.

Also, if a woman has lived with a man before marriage and ends the relationship is she less likely to be committed to her future boyfriend/husband? Plus do women who have pre-marital sex more likely to become frigid and not like sex than women who do not have sex outside of marriage. I remember being told that women do not like to have sex outside of a deeply committed relationship and that pre-marital sex damages them in many psychological ways.

Have a nice day!



I don't know where you're getting your information from, but I'd fire that advisor! To wit:

Women can have all sorts of reasons for showing interest - even when they're not interested. Simply showing interest isn't enough. For instance, many women seek male attention and approval. By telling you her personal stories, she may be trying to make you a "friend" - something you absolutely DO NOT want. If you become this woman's friend, you'll never be anything else but. No dating, no relationship - and no possibility of anything else.

Living with someone has no impact on how likely - or unlikely - it is that a woman will be committed to a boyfriend. That's actually in the man's hand. If you're skilled at creating desire in women, they will commit everything. Trust me on this one.

In fact, it's just the opposite with premarital sex. Any woman that wants to wait may very well become non-sexual in her marriage. Women that don't wait learn to be better lovers - and learn to enjoy it far more according to much research.

Who ever told you that lie about women and premarital sex deserves a hard, square kick in the ass because they don't have a clue about the reality.

Best regards...

At The End of My Sexual Rope!


I am at the end of my rope here.

I got engaged this past December, and my fiancé was living in another country. I have now given up my job, friends, etc... and moved to be with him and "enjoy our engagement", at his request.

Since I have moved here it has been a mixed bag of attention. He does sweet things for me. He gives me hugs and kisses in the morning and when he arrives home from work. We go out with friends and hang out at home and cook together and drink wine or champagne or just relax in front of the T.V., but we have had sex only twice in a month!

He curls up in the sheet or one of the blankets with a pillow between us most nights. I have caught him masturbating in the middle of the night on his side of the bed, and this past weekend I walked in to find him masturbating to a porno. I feel angry and hurt and confused.

Why wouldn't he want to just have sex with me? I am in great shape and I am attractive and I have been very sweet and loving to him. He acts so happy about our engagement at work and they all tease him about coming in late each morning because now I am in town and he is getting a workout in the morning. It kills me that this is so far from the truth!

Why would he propose and relocate me and then not touch me. I talked to him the night that I came in during the porno and he said that he "doesn't want to have sex with me, and he is not sure when he will".

I need help!


Yes, I agree - you need help here!

Let's deal with this first: confronting him about the masturbation like you're his mother is definitely NOT going to help your situation! Not only are you going to drive him underground about all of this, you're also going to drive him right out of your bed! You want him to open up about his sexuality, not close it down. Do NOT ever do this again with him or anyone else you're involved with. What you see as an affront to your sexual relationship is actually just him expressing his sexuality - something you want more of. You just want it with you.

Second, I strongly urge you to put off the wedding. I don't care how far along all the planning is - DO NOT get married until you get the sex thing worked out! If this is at all important to you, I hope you seriously listen to what I'm telling you here. A sexless courtship will lead directly to a sexless marriage. Trust me on this one.

What you have: an engagement with someone that doesn't want (much) sex with you; someone whose sexuality is being driven underground - and even further away from you; the inability to discuss the issue and to work through it as a couple, with no change expected in the near future.

What you want: someone that is completely open about their sexuality (as you should be with him); that harbors no fear in "letting you in", and that can talk to you frankly about anything - including these problems; a chance to work through all of this together as a team and come out in the end with both of your needs being met and completely satisfied.

This isn't to say that if you get this worked out everything will be hunky. You'll always have issues in your relationship. That's why it's not trite to say that relationships take work. Indeed they do, but to get that work started, you first have to be able to communicate openly and honestly about things - which is why you want to avoid forcing him underground!

From what you've told me, it appears that he has a normal sex drive, so that isn't likely the problem. For some reason however, he doesn't see you as his sexual partner. Why this is so, I can't say - that's for you and he to determine. This may even require that you both seek some counseling to help bring this to the surface.

It might be because he’s feeling pressure by being married, or maybe there’s something about the sex you both have that he’s not happy with. He might be starting to feel differently about you now that you’re both together and doesn’t want to admit the mistake. There are 1001 other possible reasons, but without having a frank discussion about all of this, you’re not going to know.

Regardless of how to do it, you need to get this dealt with right away. I strongly urge you to not go through with the wedding until it is dealt with. A marriage isn't going to make this any better!

Best regards...

How Young is Too Young?

Dr. Neder,

Hello! I read a question posted by "Spotless" on the internet titled "Why Do Men Fear Commitment" ( )

I'm having the same problem, but my situation is a little different. I'm 18, and the guy backing out is 19. The other article you responded too was from a woman probably much older than me. With my boyfriend we were great. As a matter of fact he was the one who basically made all the first moves. He saw me in one of our university cafeteria's, looked me up, called me, and made all the other first moves like holding hands, kissing, and all that other "young love" stuff. Within about 2 weeks of knowing each other we were official. Spring break came the following week and when we got back he was really different (even though over the phone during spring break he seemed fine). His reasons for breaking up were to sum it up, that we moved too fast (I admit we did), he needs time for himself (whatever that means), he just wants to be friends for a while and let something develop on it's own (I thought we did develop something), and lastly he said that I'm TOO YOUNG to be worrying about boys.

I'd like to think that I'm a mature girl who knows what she wants. I don't want to date around for fun at college as I don't see the point in spending a large amount of time with someone if you don't see a potential future with them. Plus I don't wish to be labeled a slut. I understand that 18 is a young age to whip out a diamond, but that's not what I'm expecting right now. He recently got out of a relationship of 3 years- the girl dumped him out of no where and he was hurt by it. He seems very respectful of women and he's really sweet. Why did he back out after a few weeks when he was the one who brought "us" that far into it.

Any advice you could give would be very much appreciated



Actually, I don't read minds. Thus, I can't tell you why he did this. Instead, let's deal with you.

First of all, I agree that 18 is far too young to be worrying about a committed relationship. What experience are you using to even know that you want such a relationship, or one with just this guy? I tell people all the time that unless you're at least 25-30, there's no possible way that you've had enough experience to make such an important decision.

Further, how do you know that any relationship is "going somewhere" until you actually get into it? This is all about time, but in your case, you seem to want to move right into the commitment without doing any of the work. No guy (including this one) is ever going to go for that! What you're really telling him is that you don't care about him (the person), all you're interested in is the format. It's like he just walked in front of the target.

Stop and take a deep breath here. You're only 18 and there's absolutely no reason to be in such a big rush for commitment. Trust me on this one: nothing is worse than being committed to the wrong person. The problem is that you don't even know which guys are "right" and which ones are "wrong" simply because you lack experience to know this!

Go out, date some guys, have fun and don't focus on the format of your relationship - focus on the quality instead. The format will come as the quality grows.

Best regards...

I Can't Believe People "Like You"!

Hi Dennis,

I am a 28 year old woman who is madly in love with my boyfriend of two years. My problem is that I have irrational jealous thoughts that are making me miserable. My boyfriend says he does not look elsewhere, and that I can’t believe people like you who paint all men with one brush.

You say you are all hard-wired this way. Well, I feel sick when I think about my boyfriend finding another women attractive. I am very good-looking, so I am not sure if it is insecurity or a fear of abandonment. He says he does not fantasize about other women and that I am always in his heart and his thoughts.

You are saying though, that I should not believe him. What should I do?


Herein lies your biggest problem: you don't want to believe what people "like me" say and thus, you don't know what else to believe. Further, it gives you nothing to work with; no options for how you deal with your boyfriend or your relationship. Instead, you just bury your head in the sand and fret.

I have no idea why you're so insecure, but if anything will, this insecurity is going to tear your relationship apart. Think of this something like trying to hold a handful of dry sand. As you squeeze your fingers together, more sand slips through your fingers. On the other hand, if you just cup your hand, holding the sand gently, you can hold it forever. Your boyfriend has been incredibly patient to have put up with this for 2 years! Most men "like me" would have never tolerated so much "squeezing" from you and would have moved on a long time ago.

I suggest that you adopt a new way of thinking: believe what people "like me" tell you about men. After all, I'm a man, I talk to men all day long, I've done tons of research and written two books, recorded a CD, produced hundreds of articles and have millions of readers all over the world.

So, what happens then, if you DO choose to believe what I say about men, (and by the way - you didn't state what that "truth" is about men that you fear)? Simple: you get to change how you react to things. You get to decide that you have some control and some options and can make things the way you want them. This gives you real power.

Here are the facts: men (including your boyfriend) are not designed to be monogamous. Nature made us polygamous for a very specific reason: to insure that we continued on as a species. That's pretty important, don't you think? Now, here's another important fact: we can CHOOSE to be monogamous if we want to be. Yes, this goes against our natural programming, but indeed, many men do choose monogamy for many reasons.

Now, armed with this knowledge, you have a new tool at your disposal that will completely change the way you act in your relationship. Since your boyfriend is "this way", all you have to do is accept it and decide to become the woman for whom your boyfriend chooses monogamy! Now, doesn't that seem a lot easier than trying to get him to prove to you everyday that he doesn't want to be with anyone else? Sure it is.

As soon as you discover what it is that your boyfriend needs in order to make this choice, and you become this woman, you've eliminated this huge problem from your relationship almost entirely! One step and it's gone!

Isn't that a lot easier than living in constant fear that people "like me" are saying something you don't like?

Best regards...

My Girlfriend is a Spy!

Dear Doctor,

This is the first time I've ever written for advice like this, but this is the first time I've felt I really HAD to. I'm 25 years old living with a 28 year-old woman. About 8 months before we started dating, a previous relationship of over 4 years ended. It was not a bitter breakup, we dated in college; then she went her way and I remained to pursue my law degree.

Even though, I took it pretty hard and became bitter. Eventually, I worked through most of my issues involving that breakup, but the beginning of my current relationship occurred during the tail-end of my "getting over it." Therefore, I admittedly made some mistakes and treated her unfairly in the beginning, and I have apologized and tried to make up for that time and time again.

My real problem begins last fall, when I received a short, friendly, completely non-romantic email from my ex, wishing me a happy birthday. I was honest with my current girlfriend, and told her about the e-mail. She blew up, demanded to know why I was still keeping in touch with my ex, and refused to believe my honest assertion that my communicating with her did not mean that I was "not over it" or was secretly trying to maintain a second relationship. It was simply keeping in touch with a friend.

A month or so later, my girlfriend issued an ultimatum: either cease all contact with my ex, or the relationship ends. I saw this as a completely irrational reaction to what was in fact a completely innocent correspondence. I agreed to sever all ties with my ex, but secretly continued my infrequent correspondence, deciding not to tell her about it.

Last night, she revealed to me that she had been essentially spying on me; going through my e-mails for the past few months until she found what she was looking for: a quick, platonic, non-romantic, non-intimate, friendly e-mail from my ex that just asked how I'm doing – nothing emotional.

Now she claims that I lied because I can't "let go" of my ex! She claims she got "suspicious," and uses that suspicion to justify her invasion of my privacy and can't believe anything I say.

This is a very messy situation, and seems to be pretty unique (haven't found any specific advice either online or through my friends in whom I confide).

I really love my girlfriend and want her to trust me enough to respect my decision to maintain a loose "friends-only" e-mail correspondence with a person who was, over all else, always a good FRIEND to me.

Any advice/insight would be GREATLY appreciated


Why oh why do guys come to me only AFTER they get themselves in hot water? Do you know that if you had just read my first book, "Being a Man in a Woman's World" you could have completely prevented this before it happened? This is what I call in the book, "The Test". Now you have to do damage control rather than addressing it when it first happened. You could have actually turned it into something that built, rather than destroyed your relationship! Let's start with this: go take a look at the book (and the second) as you're going to need a new education about women:

Ok, first of all, you should never have told her about these emails in the first place. That's just a beginner's mistake. Why give women ammunition? They don't need your help to cause you these problems - they are perfectly great at doing it all themselves. There's nothing wrong with keeping a few unknowns in your closet. Sure, you just figured that by doing "full disclosure", you were somehow showing her that she could trust you. That's not how women (or trust!) works! Women will gather up all of the things you say or do as fodder for later transgressions. NEVER, NEVER give them something else for free!

Second, when you lie, you have to fully cover your tracks. Women are expert liars as you're going to find out in your practice of law. They know all the tricks. Men on the other hand are terrible liars, and worse yet, we live with stigma that compels us NOT to lie like "honor". Women are under no such stigma.

In my second book, I talk exactly about this - how to lie effectively. You (and every man) needs to understand these skills because women know them intuitively. Whereas men will often cover their lies 2 or even 3 levels deep, women cover their lies to the source - and will go there to find yours. You can't be lax when it comes to covering lies. By learning how to lie, you'll also learn the tools women use against you both when they lie and when they suspect you of lying. One more point about lying: Everyone and I mean everyone does it. Nobody including your girlfriend is immune as it's such an ingrained part of our culture and language systems. If any ever tells you they have never lied - guess what? They are lying!

Ok, some "facts":

1) Remember: just because you didn't treat your girlfriend as well as you would have liked when you first met her, SHE was with you because SHE felt that SHE benefited! This was regardless of your situation. You don't own her anything more. She made her own choices and just because you changed yours doesn't mean that you own her any penance.

2) Women will always go through all of your stuff - boxes, letters, email, cell phones, etc. looking for dirt. They just can't help it! You need to know that no matter how many promises she makes not to do it, she's going to do it! You didn't give her a key to your place did you? Even if she gives it back to you, there's another copy - trust me. I see it all the time. You're going to have to fully cover your tracks - there's no other way. The books will show you how.

3) I have a rule: anything found during the invasion of a person's privacy is null and void. The commission of this crime is SO bad, that nothing else could ever equal it. Everyone deserves privacy - even if you're married. No exceptions. She invaded your personal space and your privacy! This is a foundational human right, yet she thinks it's ok and is making YOU the bad guy just because she found something she doesn't even understand!

4) This woman is making you pay for things you haven't even done! She knows that she can get away with this because you don't know how to handle it. Thus, she can keep racking up charges as long as she wants and get you to jump like a trained dog anywhere and everywhere she wants. This is typical female behavior. She knows she's not going to get you to do what she wants through brute force. So, she (and every other woman out there) has evolved a serious to tools and techniques (like this one) to get you "under control". Offensive? You bet, but it only exists because YOU let it happen by being uneducated.

5) Trust can NEVER come from something someone else does or says. It comes from inside. This woman doesn't trust her own intuition or actions enough and wants to make YOU responsible for them instead! Pretty good deal - for her. Bad deal for you. Don't play that game!

My brother, I never have to put up with any of this crap from the women I date. So what's the difference between you and me? Simple: an education. I set the rules in my relationship. I insure that women know I have a right to privacy (even though I'm a public person) and that they will, under no circumstance violate that right. I give them that privacy too - and we have mutual respect. Does any of your situation sound "respectful" on her part? Not to me. Did you ever stop to think about that?

The bottom line:

You have a right to continue your minor friendship with your ex. After all, she's hundreds or thousands of miles away and isn't a threat to your girlfriend. You also have a right to privacy and to not being spied on. Your ex controls the sex as do all women. That's not a threat to your girlfriend in any way and she knows it. This is about a power struggle, pure and simple.

You need some new philosophy about women and your relationships with them. I strongly urge you to read "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II" and get your education straightened out.

Best regards...

Mr. Nice Guy

Dear Dr. Neder,

I'm sure you've heard this scenario hundreds of times, but I thought I'd ask anyway, in hopes for some serious help.

I am the type of person that's all about hanging out with my friends and having a good time. I have never really been the type of guy that sees a beautiful girl and just approaches her. I am just myself and if some kind of spark is ignited with a girl, then so be it, then I will pursue her. Well, that doesn't happen often, but when it does, I freeze up. If I'm out with one of my female friends just to see a movie or whatever, then I am the life of the party. I am good at making a girl laugh, if I may say so myself. But when I'm out on what could be considered a date, I don't know what to do. Even if I am going out on a "date" with a friend that I've known for a while, as is the case now, I am just a completely different person.

Could this be a lack of confidence or is it something else? Please! I need your help!


All I had to do was see your subject line "Mr. Nice Guy" and I already know what your problem is, and yes, I see this all the time.

Let's get down to brass tacks here - you're a pussy. You're a guy that wants women to do all the work for you so that you don't have to put yourself out there to fail. What relationships you've had have been with women that have pursued you. So, you've simply had to take what you were given, rather than going after what you really wanted. Even now, you are with "female friends" as you've said, but you and I know exactly why they are "friends". You're hoping that one of them will somehow fall in love with you and will again do all the work for you.

Here's the bright lining in all of this: there's hope for you!

If you're serious about wanting to meet, date and establish relationships with really great women, you need to get in touch with your inner asshole. Stop being "Mr. Nice Guy" and start being "Mr. Shark", "Mr. Ain't Got Time" and "Mr. Forgot Our Date" and start getting things worked out here!

Indeed, this is a lack of confidence, but it's so much more too. More than confidence, you lack an understanding of how the female mind works. You've been brainwashed by a society that has become rabidly feminine, and you're trying to be the "nice guy" in it. Instead, you’re just getting eaten up.

I recommend we start by getting your education about women fixed. Go read "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II" and get some new 'tude. Then, we can start rebuilding your skill set from the ground up. The bottom line here is that your current motif isn’t working for you any more than it does for anyone else.

Best regards...

Help! My Boyfriend is the Girlfriend!


I have a dilemma and I hope that you will be able to help me.

Almost 2 years ago I met this guy in school. I am 22 years old and he is 25 years old. We started out as friends. After about a year of our acquaintance and friendship, he wrote me a letter saying that he's in love with me and that he wants to date me. He's a good guy but I wasn't sure if we would be compatible as boyfriend and girlfriend.

He is overly sensitive and I am not too sensitive, at least not as much as he is. We have been dating for almost a year now, and things haven't been all good, but not all bad either. For the past 10 months, we have been arguing quite often, about little things. He is overly sensitive and he gets upset over every little thing. Then, when he gets upset, I get irritated and angry!

When he is upset, he doesn't talk to me. Instead, he gets quiet and has an upset face and he waits for me to ask him what’s wrong, as if he wants to be pampered and babied. He’s supposed to be the man in this relationship! I denies being overly sensitive and won’t listen when I tell him. It seems like he has feminine qualities in him, he likes to hear gossip, knows what goes on with my friends and be involved in everything we do and say. He likes to be the center of attention.

He is good, loyal and caring guy and I love him and I want to be with him but I can't go on like this! Please tell me what to do or say to him.

Thank you.


Let me guess, this guy was raised by a single mother and he sits down to pee too?

I'm afraid to tell you that this is becoming more and more an issue for today's men and is based on what I call the "feminization of society". Men have no good role models these days and in fact, are looked down up by society as the creator of much of our ills. TV is especially egregious as it now views its primary audience as women and then gives feminine attributes to male characters! It’s very difficult for today’s men to learn what men are supposed to be and how they are supposed to act. Just 30 or 40 years ago, you'd never see someone like your boyfriend as other men (and women) wouldn't put up with it.

That knowledge doesn't help you much however. What is effectively happening is that your boyfriend is being the woman in your relationship, but not even doing it well. Thus, you have to be both the woman AND the man here! You have to hold up both parts of the relationship and frankly, that’s pretty tiring.

This guy needs to read my books as this is exactly the behavior I "correct" through them. As to what you can do, I suggest that's the first place to start. As dedicated as you are to trying to help him get this corrected, you just don’t have the experience. Further, you’re too close to the situation to be of help. He needs some outside influences in his life so he can learn how men look, act and respond. He needs to learn what a man’s role is in a relationship.

You should also direct him to our (free) discussion group at so that he can begin getting the male authority and perspective that he lacks from many sources. This is a very large, active discussion group and these are just the sorts of issues we deal with.

While I feel for you both, you need to understand that this really isn't his fault. He doesn't have any other models to follow! As you've already stated, he has other great qualities that you appreciate and if he could just start being the man of your dreams, you could also start being the woman of HIS dreams too.

Best regards...

Should I Marry "The One"?

Dear Dr. Neder,

I’m dating a man who I think is "the one". He and I share so much in common. For example, we’re the same age, both have divorced for the same amount of time, have two kids the same age, etc.

We met by accident. It turns out that I grew up with his nieces but never met him before. My girlfriend signed me up for on-line dating, but I never took it seriously. The last day that my membership I saw his picture and I responded. Come to find out we live only 1 mile away from each other and I knew his family. We met and hit it off.

It has been almost a year. I get mixed signals from him however. He goes from wondering if I am "the one" to talking about marriage. I have half my stuff at his place already and I am very much in love with him. I was wondering, do you think we would ever get married? I am ready now but not in a hurry. I believe he is the one. I don’t push marriage, but wonder if he will be ready I was told by a family member that he though I was the one but the thought that about his ex-wife too.

He wanted me to move in then he said no he needs his space. What should I do? I basically act like his wife now. Is it about his time?

Thank you,


Let's begin by talking about the concept of "the one" or in other words, a "soul mate". Many people believe that there is only one soul mate for each of us, or at most, only a very few. In fact, according to my own research, there are thousands of soul mates - maybe even hundreds of thousands - for each of us! Take a look at this article from my website:

So, is he "the one"? Obviously, I don't know. Further, I don't know if he's going to marry you as I don't read minds and I don't see into the future. However, with that said, let's now talk about marriage.

Should you be married? My first reaction is no. This isn't based on anything you've said however, this is based on few simple facts. First, marriage itself is a "format" for the relationship - just as there are a thousand other "formats" from dating to living together, etc. This has nothing to do with the quality of the relationship itself. I try to get people to understand that the quality is the most important aspect and that you should choose a format that will either sustain or enhance that quality only. Don't get married simply because it seems like the next step. Get married either because you know it will take an otherwise perfect relationship and make give it that last little kick to make it perfect, or because you want to have children. I believe that children should only be raised within a married family.

The second fact is that marriage rarely makes a relationship better if it's not already perfect! Consider that. If you're very happy now and you get married, chances are that you will lose that happiness! More than 1/2 of all marriages end in divorce for this very reason. As I continue to say, there aren't too many divorces, there are too many marriages.

One last fact: I don't think that anyone should consider getting married until they've been together at least a couple of years. After than, the talks can begin, but that doesn't even mean that the marriage should proceed, unless everything else is right.

Best regards...

A Sense of Urgency


I was reading a past post called "All of my Men's is friends", and I have a question that is somewhat connected to that. I have been experiencing pretty much the same situation as that women, except for my situation I have been more forward as to my feelings for the other.

The problem is the other person is terrified of hurting another or getting hurt in a relationship. Needless to say this has become a problem I can imagine many people are experiencing. What can be done from my perspective to make sure I don't fall into the friend category needlessly?

Thank you


Actually there's a large number of things you can do - far more than I can describe via email. If you want the whole story, check my books, "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II".

Almost everyone is afraid of being hurt in relationships. However, relationships are all about risk. If you (or anyone) isn't willing to accept that risk, then you have to be willing to be alone for the rest of your life. What else can you do?

Let's look at this from another standpoint; one of urgency.

Let's say that you and I are sitting in a room. I ask you to go next-door and get me a pen, so you get up and go to the door, turn the knob and it's locked. So, you come back to me and say, "I can't get you that pen, the door is locked."

Now, let's say that your 2-year-old daughter is locked in that room and the building is on fire. Are you simply going to say, "I can't save her - the door is locked." Of course not! You'll move heaven and earth to get that door open and save your daughter.

So too, is it with relationships. When someone is more interested in the relationship than by fear they will pursue the relationship. I suggest that this person is likely not as interested in you.

What a lot of people do is try to convince someone to like them more than they do and that is a sure recipe for disaster. I try to teach people to first set their own goals so that they understand exactly what they want in their relationships and exactly who they want these relationships with; and then to go find people that have the same goals.

Best regards...

My Girl Flirts

Dear Dr. Neder,

My girlfriend says she loves me and I know she does, but why does she get so happy when other guys flirt with her?

Another question: Why does she always bring up the past of her ex's all the time because it really makes me mad about the stuff she says like when she went camping all these guys were checking her out. Do you think it is to make me jealous?

Because she has been in a lot of relationships that the guys didn’t care what she said about anything because a lot of them cheated on her, I'm the one trying to make everything for her right now.

How do I do so?


Here's why she gets so happy: she's an "Attention Whore" ("AW"). She craves male attention. This is bad, Bad, BAD for you by the way! If she gets enough of it or the right type from some other guy, she's going to fall out of love with you.

She brings up the past because she has no respect for you or your relationship. Personally, I don't care and realize that the girls I date have had a past life, but they rarely talk about it to me. Know why? Because they respect me and don't want to risk causing any harm to our relationship. Does this sound like your girl? Not to me.

This isn't to make you jealous - it's because she's an AW.

Now, here you are, the "nice guy" and you're trying to make everything right for her. What's she doing to earn it? She's seeking all sorts of attention from other guys in hopes of meeting a "real" man one day.

My brother, I strongly urge you to be this man by completely changing your attitude, or you're going to lose this woman to someone like me. Trust me on this one - I see it everyday in the thousands of emails I receive. I also strongly urge you to read "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II" and get this straightened out. Don't say I didn't warn you!

Best regards...

Hold Your Dates In Person

Hi Doc!

I've read through your site and have found some answers which have helped but I would greatly appreciate your opinion.

Well I met this girl 3 months ago on the internet. From the moment we met, we chatted for about 3 weeks every day for about 2 or more hours on average and quite a few times we chatted for about 5 hours. We’ve been very intimate (phone sex), and she says she has never opened up to anyone as quickly as she has to me.

She split from her ex 2 months ago, and they were together for 8 months, she says she does not want the disappointment again but yet says she wants me and has feelings for me. However, in the last month and a half she has been too busy to talk to me, return SMS messages, phone calls, etc. and I’ve basically given up trying with her. I would like your expert advice as to whether it’s worth continuing to try with her or just forget I ever met her.

Thanks a lot. You’re a genius - great articles and information. I look forward to hearing from you.


Thanks for the comments on the site. "Genius"? No - I'm just a guy that has had his head kicked in enough by NOT knowing what I was doing to actually DO something about it! Now, I write books to try to help others through this too.

I can tell you exactly what happened here: you tried to hold your dates over the phone rather than in person. In effect, you’re creating a fantasy relationship. As soon as she realized this, she decided that wasn't what she wanted.

I have people write to me all the time with this same situation. They spend hours on the phone and create incredibly intense emotional connections and then one partner pulls out entirely. It is usually the woman that pulls out, by the way. Here's why: by hiding behind a telephone, computer, SMS, etc., you're actually telling her that you're too much of a pussy to actually meet her in person. This gets very frustrating very fast.

Frankly, I think you may have lost this one. If you try to go back to her now, she's still going to remember you as the guy that hid from her - not the great guy that you are.

Remember: telephones are for SETTING dates, not holding them.

Best regards...

We’re Not Communicating!


My boyfriend and I seem to speak a completely different language. For instance, during a recent altercation, I did not understand that his "What?!" was supposed to mean "I am open to your suggestion" as he tells me it was supposed to mean when his tone of voice said the opposite.

Likewise, he interpreted; "I feel lonely sometimes when you spend so much time doing X" as "This is what you are doing wrong now" and not that I had feelings about something, and wanted some reassurances from him. To make matters worse, we have both been emotionally beaten-up pretty badly in our prior relationships, and tend to automatically revert to what phrases, actions, etc., used to mean.

What do we do to keep from inadvertently sabotaging our love?


Communications between men and women are often very difficult because we communicate in different ways. Usually one person is very direct and specific (with the other trying to "read into" what they are saying - an obvious mistake), and the other uses implication and inference (with the other person assuming they are being direct and specific). You can easily see why these communication issues arise.

This is the same thing you're experiencing with your boyfriend. You are saying one thing to mean another; and yes, I understand that YOU know what you mean, but don't assume that he does!

Likewise, when your boyfriend says something, don't assume that he's implying something, or try to read into it things that aren't there - regardless of the inflection he gives to it!

Here are some other important keys to communicating:

1) Listen intently and don't interrupt. When you jump in and try to finish someone's sentence, you'll never really know what they were about to say - you're making assumptions.

2) Stay on-topic. Don't try to throw everything in the mix all at once. Stay to one point - and one point only!

3) Repeat back to him what you heard in your own language. Make sure it's what he is saying and then respond ONLY AFTER confirming with him that you heard his meaning.

4) When you respond, be direct and specific to HIS point. Don't come back with things like, "Well, YOU said..." or "YOU did..." as excuses for your own misbehavior!

5) Realize that arguing in a relationship is a chance to improve it and learn even more about your partner. You’ll never grow as much as when you’re fighting, (although, be careful about too much of this type of growth!)

6) Get him to agree to these rules and do them himself.

Learning to listen - really listen - to someone else is one of the most difficult skills to learn, but trust me, it's also one of the most important if you want to keep a relationship healthy and growing.

Best regards...

When to Pop The (Other) Question

Dear Dr. Dennis:

I have been out on 6 dates with this great man and have known him for 2 months. I was now wondering when it is an appropriate time to bring up the dreaded question:

"Are you seeing anyone else?"

I don't believe he is, and he always initiates seeing me but I would like to know but I don't want to freak him out and have him bail on me.

Thank you


Frankly, I think the real question is HOW to ask this rather than when, but we'll get to that in a minute.

The time to ask this is when you're ready to move things to another level. Your reason for asking is probably because you want to have a sole relationship with him and (hopefully) you're not seeing anyone else now yourself. If that isn't the case, I'd avoid asking this question! If you're ready to move forward, the next date is fine.

Now, the question about how to ask is critical. If you simply come out and ask it (stated as you did below), I think you're going to blow him right out of the water. It's far better to work WITH HIM in deciding what direction you both want to take the relationship. For instance, if you were to say:

"You know, I've really enjoyed our time together over the past two months, and we really seem to be a compatible couple. I feel so strongly that I've decided not to see anyone else right now. How do you feel about that?"

Which then leads to:

"What kind of relationship are you looking for?"


"How will you know when you've found what you're looking for?"

These are all valid questions that will help position the relationship for you and him at the same time. Further, you're not going to put him in a position to tell you something simply because he thinks you want to hear it.

Best regards...

Am I Missing My G-Spot?

Dear Doctor:

I have been reading your questions and answers on the web, and there is one thing I am very unsure about. I have been with my boyfriend now for 4 1/2 years and I always climax during sex. I reach this is through my boyfriend licking my clitoris. It’s absolutely great - even beyond great, but when I often hear of people having an orgasm from an internal "g-spot".

Am I really experiencing an orgasm or have I yet to experience one? What is that? Please tell me so I know there is nothing I am missing out on.

Thank You


First of all, your sexual response (as a woman) is much more complicated than a man's. Some women report "clitoral orgasms" (as you do), "vaginal orgasms", orgasm that feel differently via sex and many other types. In fact, some women can climax simply from being hugged or kissed - without any direct stimulation of the genitals. There is a wide variety of experience when it comes to women's climaxes.

The orgasm you experience through oral sex may be the only type of orgasm you know, but many women can learn to climax via other methods too - including sex and masturbation of other areas, fantasy, etc. That however isn't really the goal unless you're just experimenting. The goal should always be mutual satisfaction (both you and your boyfriend) - whatever that means to you both. It doesn't even always have to end in orgasms! If you're finding that you're satisfied via oral sex alone, you're not necessarily missing out on something.

Many women have a "g-spot" located somewhere between the opening of the vagina up to about 2 inches inside the front wall of the vagina (if you're standing up). The absolutely location is different for different women. This fleshy area often has additional nerve endings that produce anything from dramatic sensations to nothing at all. Some women experience incredibly strong orgasms from this area being stimulated which may even include an ejaculation of fluid (perfectly normal by the way). Others get no benefit from it or even find it uncomfortable.

You might try this with your boyfriend: while you're on your back, and he's licking your clitoris, show him how to insert one or more fingers into you and stimulate the top of your vagina. Experiment to find out what feels best, make sure he washes his hands before of course, and take it slowly at first. Just try experimenting to see how it feels. If you find it particularly enjoyable try including it in your oral stimulation to see what happens. Obviously, if it's not comfortable or pleasurable, you can ask him to stop.

The bottom line is that you can experiment with all sorts of types of sex, but don't lose focus. Sex is communication first between you and your boyfriend. Whatever you find enjoyable between you two is the goal, and if achieved, you're not missing out on anything!

Best regards...

Should I Let My Girlfriend Go and Get Married?

Hi Dr. Neder,

I am not sure about this "writing for advice" business....I am conflicted in that I should be able and/or willing to answer this question myself. Yet, I also feel that I need an outside perspective. So, if you have a moment to spare, could you advise a stranger, i.e. me?

The problem is I am with a really nice girl, she's 34 and I am 36, and we've been seeing each other for over 2 years now. I am unsure what to do next. I do not feel ready to marry for a few compelling reasons. The question is, then, as my girlfriend deserves a guy who will support her and give her a family....and I am not ready or willing to fill this role, shouldn't I break up with her??? Isn't best for her and I that I confront this problem now? She is not in her 20's so time is not on our side.

I look at other women all the time. I have had only a few serious relationships and I think that this contributes greatly to my aversion to commitment.

To make matters worse, I'm kind of passive/aggressive with conflicts. I typically avoid any tense encounters. I have met people who do not shy away or flinch in their relations to others and these folks usually have good understanding of what sort of person they want to be with. My avoidance puts me in the opposite position. That is probably why I am writhing, wrestling and writing regarding this relationship.

Ultimately, I want to do what is best and do it now. I would rather make a mistake and lose a great girl and gain wisdom than hide from a tough decision. Ok, do you have any impressions? Thanks for your time and consideration of my problem.


Don't worry. I get letters every single day from people just like you. In fact, understanding relationship/dating/sex issues is very difficult. After all, where do you go to get this type of information? Most people rely on their own experiences - and continue to make the same mistakes over and over again. By asking for some perspective, you get to break that mold and get new ideas, perspective and tools that will help you work through your particular issue and reach your goals.

I see so many people making this mistake it's unbelievable. Let me ask you: what's more important, a happy, healthy relationship where both parties are getting what they want and need, or being married? It's not that you can't have both, but one deals specifically with your happiness and the other deals with the FORMAT of the relationship.

Most people enter into relationships thinking that they are moving along some path. They see marriage or living together in their futures, but don't stop to consider the important aspects of the relationship itself - the quality, their own goals, wants, needs, etc. Then, they wind up living together or getting married before it's time just because that's the next step; or so they think.

Women are particularly vulnerable to this type of thinking because so much pressure is put on them to be married. However, as I tell people all the time, there aren't too many divorces, there are too many marriages!

So, where does this leave you?

My first recommendation is to sit down and work over your relationship goals. If you don't have them, get to writing them out. You should have goals for all areas of your life, including your relationship. Then, when you're finished simply compare your current relationship to your goals. Do they fit? If not, where do you need to work to make them fit? Will you only be happy by being married? Do you want a family? There are a thousand of these questions you need to ask.

Next, apply these goals to your relationship, but do this only for yourself. Your girlfriend has to work on her goals too and do this same thing. You can't do this for her.

Finally, if you find areas that aren't being fulfilled, then consider what you have to do to make the work. Then, get to work on them!

Also important: everyone, even those people in loving, committed relationships find other people attractive. Being attracted to other's looks isn't a big deal because there is so much more to look for in a mate. That alone isn't reason enough to end your current relationship. Having it not meet your goals however, is.

The bottom line is this:

1) You can't set goals for anyone else but yourself. Your girlfriend has to have her own goals.

2) If you have goals, you can easily see if this is the "right" relationship for you or not.

3) If it's not as close to perfect as you need, figure out what you need to make it so and then start working on that.

4) Only consider marriage if it works in with your plans and only if it adds to your relationship. Don't just get married because it seems like the "next step".

Best regards...

All My Men’s Is Friends!

Dear Dr. Neder,

I just read your response to someone asking about becoming a boyfriend of a women friend. I have this same dilemma as the guy in this letter except I am a woman who has fallen into the friend category several times and all very recently.

As much as people say that women control the speed of a relationship, I don't believe a woman has the power that men have to be straight forward because when we are, it scares the hell out of men, but when men are it turns a woman on.

This is the 4th time in last 3 years that I end up becoming really good friends with a guy and find myself hoping that the relationship turns into something more. Additionally I have had one relationship where started very closely resembling a serious relationship where you get along great but the commitment to a relationship was not there on his part.

In all these past cases I have come to a point where it was time to shift the focus of the friendship to another level and made it clear that I would like something more serious because I am starting to fall for the guy. Certainly there is a trend I am facing, and I think it has to do with the approach with the last guys at that critical moment.

From a guy’s perspective, what is it that changes your mind about a woman that can only be seen as a friend to someone that you can't wait to get sexual with? Am I doomed to have this platonic mesa happen to me over and over forever? Should I just give up and make sure I don't keep any guy friends I might fall for? Do all good relationships start with sexual tension from the man or is it possible to have a healthy relationship this way?


You're right on your first point: men are much more straight-forward than women are. We are direct with out thoughts, language and direction whereas women are much more indirect in these areas. You're also absolutely correct about that directness being a turn-on for women! I try to teach this to my students constantly.

I see at least three problems here: first, you are putting too much effort and emphasis in on the relationship itself; second, I sense that you're not picking up on the guy's sexual advances, and third you are giving too much away right from the start.

Let's deal with these in reverse order: women are usually very good at withholding the truth of their feelings from men. Men often complain about this, but in fact, also aren't usually good at dealing with a woman that isn't this way! My students are exceptions to this however, but you obviously haven't met any of them yet!

When you give away too much about your interests in them too early, they think they've already "won" you and there is no more chase. That's not a good thing for men as we are all about the chase. Interestingly, I teach my students to do this with women, but it works even better with men.

The second point is also critical. My question to you is: have you been sexual with these guys early on? If you're withholding sex from them, I can guarantee that they won't be anything more than friends with you very quickly. Men and women use sex very differently. Women use sex to create bonding an intimacy whereas men use sex (early in the relationship) to determine if they WANT to create bonding and intimacy! If you aren't being a sexual person with these guys, then all they can see is a friendship with you.

The first point; that of putting too much emphasis on the relationship (in this case "friendship"), is a huge mistake. I've written tons about this subject. Men and women don't make good friends for each other. That is a reality. Someone always comes out wanting something more. In this case, that someone is you.

If you act like someone's friend rather than someone's girlfriend, guess what he sees? Yup - a buddy. By befriending the guy, you are telling him that's exactly what you want. Further, having these guys as friends also works against you in that they become obstacles to you getting what you want. You are making friends of romantic interests rather than simply setting them free to pursue their own lives. Let's face it - you don’t' want these guys as "buddies" - that's just a consolation prize. You want something more. Focus on that something more instead of just keeping them around in your life. I call this the "Law of Vacuum" - make room in your life for what you want, by getting rid of what you don't want. Nature abhors a vacuum!

Best regards...

Too Shy to Try

Hey Doctor Dennis:

I saw your recent article on the web, and I figured I would write to you for advice on my situation.

First, I'm in high school. I'm a pretty damn shy guy even though I'm damn smart and a good athlete. Most of my male friends thrive in this environment, and a few are in committed long-term relationships. I am left out of this whole scene for the most part.

Most of the girls consider me a nice guy, but none of them ever talk to me. I'd be perfectly happy to have some female companionship once in a while if I could find my way farther once in a while, but I can't.

The reason for this is that I am too shy to ever talk to any of them. If they ever come over to talk to me, things go better (though still not as well as I'd like), or if I get the opportunity to talk with them over the phone or through the 'net, I'm good to go. I'm funny and charming, but put a girl in front of me and it's a case of "so close, and yet so far."

Any advice you have got for me; bearing in mind my age, would be much appreciated Doc.


Considering your age, I think you're right on the mark about getting all of this solved now! Many of the "shy" guys that write to me are often in their 20's, 30's, 40's and even much older. Why go through that much life without getting what you want? Being "shy" is going to prevent you from getting what you want if you don't get it straightened out.

First, let's get past this myth about shyness - it's not a real problem, it's only an excuse. Everyone has some issue with shyness at some point in their lives - you, your buddies, and everyone else. The difference between you and them - or anyone else that is "shy" is that you use it as an excuse to not do what you have to do. Don't forget that point. Being shy is not an affliction, it's a choice.

Second, you're not going to get many women to approach you, and you're going to have to learn to approach women yourself, in person. That is the way the game is played and it's not going to change just for you - trust me on this one. Thus, I want you to realize that from this very moment onward, you are going to be working to change the way you think. Stop choosing shyness as your excuse for not having what you want in your life.

Third, as soon as you start learning basic skills about dealing with people in person, you're going to find that the shyness just goes away on it's own! Sure, you might feel occasional shyness, but you'll find that it is so minor that it doesn't really even bother you. What was a huge impact in your life at one time will soon become just a minor irritation that you can completely control any time you want to.

The key to all of this is:

1) Education - get yourself educated about how to approach women, how to hold conversations, how to be funny (just like you already are on the phone or on the Internet), and especially, how to "close" to get what you want. Know that women are just as interested in meeting you as you are in meeting them!

2) Practice - Why is this all that's required? Because when you know what to do and how to do it, you'll find that you are confident and believe in yourself. Further as you practice these skills your internal dialog (how you talk to yourself) will change. You'll start thinking, "Wow, I can go meet that little cutie over there in the corner and get her number right now" instead of "Man, I can't talk to her - what if I blow it?"

The last point is also a simple one: get started right now! Don't waste another day on bad choices like being shy! If you don't do something today, tomorrow will be exactly the same. If you don't do something this week, next week will be the very same. If you don't change this year... I think you get the point.

How do you get started? First, I strongly urge you to get educated about women and this entire dating game by reading "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II". These are going to give you the tools you need for the rest of your life. Second, I suggest that you start working on your skills. Start learning to make eye contact with everyone. Learn to say "hello" to people (especially beautiful women!) and do it very single time you get the opportunity. No excuses here - it's time to stop choosing shyness as your excuse.

Best regards...

Divorce, the Kids, Family and Me

How do you end a marriage where one partner is happy and wants to continue, but I’ve been miserable for over 15 years. The relationship is over, the kids are grown but they won't even discuss the divorce.

I want to write down the reasons the relationship is dead and the reasons to separate and my goal is divorce. Each time I try however, my partner cries, throws tantrums, calls the kids into it and family and friends. The drama is way too much.

I want to get out with a bit of dignity and want the drama to end.



So, you're looking for an easy way to end a marriage where you won't have to deal with the hurt and pain of your partner? That sounds pretty cold and callous to me, especially after 15+ years! You saw something in this person when you got together and first married them. Don't you think your spouse, kids and family have a right to be involved in all of this? I do. They are directly affected by it even if you don't really care about that.

That doesn't mean that you shouldn't split if you need to - especially if you're "miserable". But be aware that this is a one-way street. You don't get to come back and create new heartache for anyone involved if you end this. That's equally selfish - maybe even more so. As well, get to this and get it over with. All you're doing is creating further drama by lingering. Would you cut a dog's tail off piece by piece? Of course not - you'd do it all at once and get it over with. Doing otherwise is cruel - just as it is to prolong this inevitable break-up.

Ok, let's get on to the split.

To do this, you have to decide absolutely that you are going to move on this time regardless of the drama and any problems that creates. I suggest you work out an exit plan by where you detail all the things both you and your spouse are going to need, a suggestion about splitting the assets (by the way, be GENEROUS in the giving and meager in the expecting), living arrangements, even arrangements with the kids. Try to be as organized and complete as possible. Then, go see an attorney - all without telling your partner first.

When you get most of the details worked out, go to your partner and explain that you're ending the marriage for good and be firm about it. Crying, including the family, etc., isn't going to prevent the inevitable, so you want to do this as cleanly and quickly as possible with the least amount of damage to everyone involved. I suggest that you have your reasons for the split detailed as well, but focus solely on you and what you need/want in your life - NOT a list of grievances or complaints about your spouse. They have enough to deal with here. You also want to begin the split immediately and should already have everything in place for this to occur within 24 hours.

Finally, work your plan. Don't hedge, hesitate, vacillate or change your mind. This is difficult enough for everyone involved. If you really want to split up, get to it and be compassionate about everyone's feelings and pain. They deserve that from you.

For more information on breaking up, please see this article:

Best regards...

A Case Where Truth Doesn’t Hurt

Hello Dr. Neder

I am at a point now where I do not know what else to do. I have been with my boyfriend for almost 3 years and I have a lot of issues with trust. Well, I have one issue and that is that I do not trust him. My boyfriend has lied to me numerous times about many different things, some of them so trivial that I can’t possibly understand why he would bother. Over the years I have let each lie go because each time he says that he will change. Recently I broke up with him because I told him I didn’t trust him. However, the break up only lasted 2 days because I missed him so much.

I don’t believe that he has cheated or that he ever would. I just think that he has a problem. He not only lies to me but to his friends and family. I want to be with him more than anything but I know that this is not possible without trust. I was wondering if you could help me. I don’t know how I am going to start trusting him again; I don’t know what I am supposed to do. It has come to the point where I don’t believe anything he tells me.



Let the first person that hasn't lied come forward...

First of all, this is an absolutely unreasonable standard. You have lied to him too - doesn't that count? How do I know this? Because lying is something EVERYONE does - from "little white likes" to "whoppers", everyone tells lies. Having been in your relationship for 3 years, I can absolutely, positively know that you've lied to him too.

The only difference is that you care about it and hold him to it; try to make him responsible for it, and make him take responsibility for your trust when he lies - he doesn't.

So, if lying is your reasoning for not trusting him, I think it's rather misplaced. Consider too that just because he's lied to you, doesn't really mean much in your relationship! My concern is why he feels he HAS TO lie to you? What about you makes him feel that he can't trust YOU in order to be honest with you? Have you ever stopped to consider that issue? This isn't about him - it's about you!

Let's talk about trust.

Trust has absolutely nothing to do with anyone else. Trust is a purely internalized thing! You're trying to make him responsible for your level of trust in him when he can't possibly do this. Your excuse is simply that since you've caught in him a lie that you can no longer trust him. Going back to my first point, that is completely unreasonable!

I've used this analogy a number of times: do you "trust" him to get something from the store if he promises, or to pick you up from the airport if he say's he will? Of course you do. You "trust" him to do it because you could simply do these things yourself if you had to. You might not appreciate him forgetting you at the airport, but you'd sure as hell find a way home, wouldn't you? I bet you wouldn't sleep there!

You know that he's never cheated on you, yet you just don't "trust" him. What's this all about? I'll tell you - it's about your inability to accept the responsibility for your own trust in someone else. Specifically, you want to rid yourself of this responsibility.

I suggest that you reconsider your issues here. You apparently have an otherwise good relationship that you're tearing apart because of personal issues - not because of issues he's created. Worse yet, this isn't going to end with him. If you break up with him, you're not going to trust the next guy - or the next one after that, if you don't get this handled within yourself first.

Best regards...


I have come across a question to which I can find no answer and was wondering if you can help me.

My wife recently returned from an overseas conference wearing an ankle bracelet on each leg. She is older and doesn't usually wear much jewelry at all.

The conference was with about a number of other women and a few men and held in French Polynesia. The day after she arrived home the left bracelet was gone but the right one has remained and she never takes it off.

She claims there is nothing to it, but I wonder. Is there any sexual connotation to wearing an ankle bracelet?

Thanks for your help!


Many people use "body modification" as an outward expression of the inward self. Many others do it for "fashion".

Examples of this is tattooing and piercing. In many cultures tattooing indicates a right of passage. In Samoa for example, young men are expected go get tattoos as a sign of their entry into adulthood. Tattoos are given by specialists using very crude tools, resulting in great pain for the wearer. For many in that culture tattooing continues throughout life often resulting in a "body suit". These are highly prized and given great respect by those in the culture. Others use piercing as a sign of cultural significance and personal growth. Examples of this include piercings worn in the lips, noses, nipples and genitals.

In both these cases there is a level of ritual combined with the modification. Often this ritual is spiritual in nature and surrounded by great ceremony.

Other "sub-cultures" use piercing and tattooing as a symbol of their involvement in that sub-culture. One example of this is the SM community where piercings and jewelry are used as a symbol of bondage, submission, dominance and power.

Today, many people are also doing these things for fashion rather than ritual. I personally believe that errantly altering the body is a deeply personal thing and to do it simply for fashion greatly lessen the cultural significance imbued in the act. For this same reason, many cultures are insulted by the west's fashion-attitude regarding these practices.

What does all this have to do with your wife's jewelry?

Many people use jewelry as the same outward exploration of these cultures, and the beliefs they hold. In fact, many pieces of clothing mimic these same aspects without committing the wearer to them. Examples of this include leather clothing and boots, high-heels - especially those with straps that circle the ankles, corsetry, certain forms of underwear, collars, bracelets, toe rings, etc.

It's very possible that your wife's interest in the ankle jewelry is like this. Perhaps she's enjoying the feeling of being "bound" by the chain around her ankle, or just that she thinks it makes her legs look good.

In any case, it doesn't mean that she has been unfaithful to you, just that she's exploring something in herself. I'll bet that if you ask her about it, she'd be happy to explain it if she senses you're really interested, and not ready to judge.

Best regards...

Problems With Living Together


I have come across a question to which I can find no answer and was wondering if you can help me.

My wife recently returned from an overseas conference wearing an ankle bracelet on each leg. She is older and doesn't usually wear much jewelry at all.

The conference was with about a number of other women and a few men and held in French Polynesia. The day after she arrived home the left bracelet was gone but the right one has remained and she never takes it off.

She claims there is nothing to it, but I wonder. Is there any sexual connotation to wearing an ankle bracelet?

Thanks for your help!


Many people use "body modification" as an outward expression of the inward self. Many others do it for "fashion".

Examples of this is tattooing and piercing. In many cultures tattooing indicates a right of passage. In Samoa for example, young men are expected go get tattoos as a sign of their entry into adulthood. Tattoos are given by specialists using very crude tools, resulting in great pain for the wearer. For many in that culture tattooing continues throughout life often resulting in a "body suit". These are highly prized and given great respect by those in the culture. Others use piercing as a sign of cultural significance and personal growth. Examples of this include piercings worn in the lips, noses, nipples and genitals.

In both these cases there is a level of ritual combined with the modification. Often this ritual is spiritual in nature and surrounded by great ceremony.

Other "sub-cultures" use piercing and tattooing as a symbol of their involvement in that sub-culture. One example of this is the SM community where piercings and jewelry are used as a symbol of bondage, submission, dominance and power.

Today, many people are also doing these things for fashion rather than ritual. I personally believe that errantly altering the body is a deeply personal thing and to do it simply for fashion greatly lessen the cultural significance imbued in the act. For this same reason, many cultures are insulted by the west's fashion-attitude regarding these practices.

What does all this have to do with your wife's jewelry?

Many people use jewelry as the same outward exploration of these cultures, and the beliefs they hold. In fact, many pieces of clothing mimic these same aspects without committing the wearer to them. Examples of this include leather clothing and boots, high-heels - especially those with straps that circle the ankles, corsetry, certain forms of underwear, collars, bracelets, toe rings, etc.

It's very possible that your wife's interest in the ankle jewelry is like this. Perhaps she's enjoying the feeling of being "bound" by the chain around her ankle, or just that she thinks it makes her legs look good.

In any case, it doesn't mean that she has been unfaithful to you, just that she's exploring something in herself. I'll bet that if you ask her about it, she'd be happy to explain it if she senses you're really interested, and not ready to judge.

Best regards...

How Do I Know She “Loves” Me?

Hi Dr. Neder:

When a woman says she loves you does she mean it?

You see, my girl friend and I had a few bumps, but now things have been great for the past few weeks. She has been doing extra special things for me. For example, she knitted me a scarf; everywhere we go she has wanted to please me and thinks about my needs and wants constantly.

Recently on a date we were sitting in the movie theater and making out (as always) and afterward she leans to me and whispers, "I love you". Now she has said it before but not like that!

Does that mean she really does love me? And if she does love me does that mean she will stay loyal to me?


Let's start with this: there are (at least) three types of people based on communication "styles":

  • "visuals" - those that deal with their worlds mostly in a visual way,
  • "auditories" - those that deal with their worlds mostly through sound, and
  • "kinesthetics" - those that "feel" their way through the world.

These are called "modalities" and come from a communication science called "NLP" or "neuro-linguistic programming". I'm not going to get into all the details about this system as you can read all about them in my books, "Being a Man in a Woman's World I & II". However, suffice it to say that it is a very powerful way to better understand yourself and your partner.

Be aware that people are usually one of these three most of the time. We call this their "primary modality". They also spend more time in one of the other two, which is known as their "secondary modality". Much less frequently, they spend time in the last one which is known as their "tertiary modality". The point is that people "move" between all of these three, but spend most of their time in a single modality.

When couples first get together, they instinctively know to use all 3 methods to express their love and caring for each other. They show each other by giving little gifts or doing things for each other that they know the other will enjoy, ("visual", like the scarf), they tell each other ("auditory", like saying "I love you"), and they make the other feel it by being close, touching, rubbing your back, etc.

As the relationship begins to mature, it's natural for people to revert back to their own communication styles more commonly. Your girlfriend may very well be an "auditory" and that's why she likes to tell you she loves you. You however, are likely to be one of the others types and thus, don't use this to believe that you're loved.

Ask yourself this question: When do I feel most loved by my partner? When she "shows" me she loves me? When she tells me she loves me? Or, when she makes me "feel" loved? This will tell you what your modality is.

You can also take this to your partner! Ask her which one makes her feel loved. Then, try to meet her modality needs too.

So, the bottom line is this: first, what is her primary modality? Second, does she use her primary modality to express to you that she feels love?

With regards to the loyalty question, it's very difficult to say absolutely. However, people that feel loved - and express it back have very little reason not to be loyal. I suggest you discover her primary modality and use it to make sure she knows you love her. Also watch how she uses this modality to express her feelings to you.

Best regards...

How Do I “Divorce the Ex”?

Dear Doctor:

I live in New Jersey and got engaged 7 months ago. My fiancé lives in Colorado and his ex-wife lives in Las Vegas with his 6 year old daughter. My fiancé divorced his ex-wife 5 years ago due to her infidelity. I am having a real hard time accepting his ex-wife coming over to his home in Colorado to bring his daughter. It's ok to bring his daughter but his ex-wife should sleep over in a hotel not his home. He assures me it's only a friendship but he is has his ex to stay at his home because of his daughter.

It really bothers me since last summer his ex asked him if they can work things out since they have a child together. Of course he told her “no”. I even asked if they’ve been intimate since the divorce, and he says that they have not. She knows we are engaged but he has not told her about our wedding date next February 2005.

Next Saturday I will go to visit my fiancée for 5 days and will meet his ex and his daughter who arrive on Tuesday. I have to come back to Jersey on Thanksgiving morning to have dinner with my son (17 years old).

I can not understand why his ex- has to stay for Thanksgiving at my fiancé's home. I really don't know how I am going to deal with this. My fiancé's neighbor told me it was odd the first time she saw his ex-wife back at home but after meeting her, she saw only a friendship between them. It is extremely difficult to have a long distance relationship and this issue doesn't help.

I feel that my fiancé is not being respectful of my feelings. He insisted I will change my opinion as soon as I meet his ex. He did say, “Please do no became her friend because his ex-wife is a liar and a manipulator…” and that I should keep my distance from her. I keep telling him, how can I keep my distance while she will stay in the same home?

Have you ever heard anything like this before? I know my fiancé loves me and I love him too but it is very awkward situation.


In fact, I've heard this rather often. This is the problem with people in divorces, with kids, and long-distance relationships - of which you have them all!

Your fiancé has every right to maintain a relationship with his daughter. Since she's so young, it doesn't make sense to put her on a plane by herself and it obviously doesn't make sense for him to fly to pick her up and then fly to return her. Having mom come out with her is the logical answer, (other than him flying to see them, of course) and frankly, I'm pleasantly surprised that she is willing to do this! That's a good mom for whatever her reasons, as she's insuring that her daughter and her daughter's father keep their relationship going.

As to your situation, the real problem here is the distance. Since you're getting married in February, my question is where are you both going to live? This is a temporary separation, and if you're so concerned about it, why don't you move in together - or at least move close to each other. That way you'd instantly relieve the problem of the long-distance issue. Most of your mistrust of the situation is from the distance. When she's there, you obviously have no way of knowing what's going on, so instead, you make up all sorts of scenarios in your mind.

Frankly, you have no reason to mistrust him or the situation here. It sounds like everyone is giving you every reason to believe that he's telling you the truth. He's even committed to marry you! You're going to meet her and the daughter in a few weeks as well, and it sounds like that is going to help to put your mind at ease.

I suggest you relax and see what is really going on when you're there. Don't create problems that don't already exist. Instead, deal with real problems, as these will always be there.

Best regards...

She’s Going to Show You What Real “Hurt” Is!

Hello Doc!

I have been involved in a relationship for some time now. We have had our ups and our downs. Recently, we decided to date "unofficially" meaning we can both date around but not have sex but can kiss others. This time period of our "unofficial" dating lasted for about two weeks. And when we did it I promised her I would stay committed and not date around and just date her. She did not make that same promise to me.

About a week and a half ago we decided to date officially again and I asked her if she had dated or kissed anyone else. And her reply was no. And all of her friends say that she couldn’t bear to put me through her dating someone else which I see as a good thing. But, we (meaning she) decided we should date unofficially during a high time in our relationship.

What does this mean? I asked her. And I know she has been hurt in the past and doesn’t want me to hurt her but she also once told me that she has all of her trust invested in me. Now, I believe that she didn’t date around (because all of her off time she and me were dating), and didn’t kiss anyone. But did she want to date around or was she scared of me hurting her. She said at first that kissing other guys she would consider cheating on her part. But about a week into being unofficial she randomly changed her mind. I trust her and know that she had a reason to change her mind other then her actually kissing someone else or anything.

She says that she dated around because she wanted to see how important I am to her and that’s why only two weeks into the unofficially we became official again. I think that she was worried about me hurting her. Now we currently are on a high point, but I still want to prove to her that I am not going to hurt her. How do I show this? And how do I show that I know that I am important to her and that she is important to me other then just surprising her because I already do that as much as possible.


Here's how: by being the pussy that you've already been in this relationship. Now, not only does she know that she can "trust" you not to hurt her, she also knows that she can walk all over you, do anything she wants to do, change the rules at her own whim, date, kiss or even have sex with other guys, or anything else she wants - all because you made it possible for her.

What in the hell are you thinking? Is this really the kind of relationship you want with her? You're not responsible for her mental health. So, she's been hurt before, huh? Boo hoo! Poor baby. All of us have been hurt before. What makes HER so special that she gets to make you responsible for it?

If she wants a real, mature, healthy, adult relationship; that involves risk - just as it does for everyone else. You can't take away that risk even if you try. The fact remains that she has her own choices to make about her relationship. All you've done is given her an excuse to do anything she damn well pleases to do - including walking all over you.

I strongly urge you to get your education about women straightened out. As soon as she meets a real man, she's going to show you what hurt is. Trust me on this one!

Best regards...

© 2005, Dr. Dennis W. Neder

Other Relationship Issues, Books

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