Tag Archives: relationship advice

11 guaranteed ways to destroy your relationship

The thing with many relationships is they have a certain shelf life, don’t they? When you’re in them, and know you need to be out of them, it can actually be difficult to move things along to their natural end.

Sure, you don’t want to be with this person any more, but it’s not like you want to kill them. What you need is a catalyst, that spark to ignite the fireworks that will send your relationship bye-bye, to that great love nest in the sky.

So if you’re eager to move on to the next stage of your relationship – jealously scouring their Facebook for new loves, bitching about your ex on WhatsApp and crying whenever you hear a Celine Dion – take your pick from this list of guaranteed relationship destroyers.

1. Put together a wardrobe from Ikea
There’s an old cliché that going to Ikea itself can cause catastrophic rows between couples, but if you can’t handle a three-hour schlep round a furniture shop without tearing each other’s heads off, you’re basic or whatever. Nobody argues in Ikea any more. It is the bootcut of argument-starters. Over.

What you really need is to buy, arrange delivery of and attempt to build, the hugest wardrobe you can find in Ikea. Tell yourself that you’re “dead handy” and “it will be fun, our little project” all you want – by the time you’re on to the second door you’ll be wielding drills and tearing the joint apart screaming at each other about how bad the sex is. Continue reading 11 guaranteed ways to destroy your relationship

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10 reasons being a Gay Best Friend sucks

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone. It seems we have reached the end of an era.

According to today’s Sunday Times’ Style magazine barometer of what’s hot and what’s o-v-a-h, the GBF (Gay Best Friend) is done, replaced by the BMF –  Best Man Friend.

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I’ll assume they mean that the BMF is a straight man. Straight men are “men” and gay men are “gay”. I think that’s how it works.

Anyway, ignoring that every so slightly acidic twist of the heteronormative knife, here’s why I’m glad my services as a GBF will no longer be required. Quite frankly, it’s been an exhausting couple of decades and I will be glad of the rest.

1. Shopping
I like shopping, don’t get me wrong. But I like shopping for myself. The great thing about being a gay man is that my boyfriend is also a man so we both wear men’s clothes. (If you’re a man and you don’t, that’s cool too – please don’t @ me.) This means we can actually shop properly – assess what looks good, appreciate each other’s sartorial decisions, get true clothes envy etc.

Being a GBF, however, means that you have to go shopping with a woman and I have to confess, I haven’t really enjoyed that since I was dragged around the shops by my mother as a child, clutching a packet of Opal Fruits.

I don’t wear dresses or bras or high heels so while I can tell you you look “nice”, if you insist, I don’t really know what accessories would go with them or what colour you should wear or whether a flesh-coloured bra is appropriate under that T-shirt.

I know Gok Wan has done a sterling job of convincing women that gay men care about your clothes, ladies, but guess what? We don’t. All we care about is when we go out together, we all look good and that you’re not going to moan you bought the wrong top all night. Continue reading 10 reasons being a Gay Best Friend sucks

Never date the ageing teen rebel

You don’t get many men falling over themselves to tell you about their childhood when you first start dating. People who had idyllic ones don’t usually feel the need to wheel them out to make conversation.

Unless we had a very bad one, or grew up with celebrities or politicians for parents or something, there’s very little to say about one’s childhood beyond the usual bewilderment at how all the chocolate bars were bigger and everyone got smacked on the legs in the supermarket. The teenage rebel however, idolises his childhood self.

Whenever a date would say “I was such a little shit at school” or a “I was a real tearaway when I was younger”, I’d cringe, steeling myself for a good hour of exaggerations, tales of pathetic, totally invented rebellions and grim attention-seeking that only a child would think were in any way cool or interesting.

As a teen, of course, most of us wallflowers and squares wished we had the pluck – not to mention the attention – of the classroom troublemaker. The nearest I got to it was some unremarkable, try-hard backchat in French lessons. I look back and am mortified by it now. In no way would I ever have considered using this to impress a date 20 years and 11 average grades down the track.

Teenage rebellion always seemed a really soulless path to me. At my school most of the rebels were also colossal bullies – usually, of course, the result of genuine issues at home.

But while for some it was an angry cry for help, others played up safe in the knowledge that somebody would bail them out, that there would be enough money to propel them forward again. Continue reading Never date the ageing teen rebel

All the men you should never date: The Know-it-all

“It’s exhausting to be right all the time,” the Know-it-all will tell you as he swirls his drink around his glass. “But I just can’t help myself. If I see an error, I have to correct it.”

You may find this charming at first. Knowledge can be quite sexy, after all.

“He’s so clever,” you’ll gush to your slack-jawed friends. You revel in your new role as Marilyn Monroe to his Olivier, drinking in his fun facts, grammatical corrections and recommendations like lattes.

But the trouble with a know-it-all is that sometimes they… don’t.

But the trouble with a know-it-all is that sometimes they… don’t. They make a mistake. And you might be the one to spot it.

Whether it’s the eternally arousing question of whether to use ‘less’ or ‘fewer’ or a seemingly irrelevant factlet about the Spice Girls, your little boffin likes to be the one doing the correcting. Continue reading All the men you should never date: The Know-it-all

10 tests every potential boyfriend must pass before you commit

So you’ve been on a couple of dates and it’s going well, but is he boyfriend material?

Stop right there and climb no further on the commitment ladder until you’ve got him through the following ten challenges:

1. Make him chew gum
Mouth open? Drooling? Really inexplicably loud? Bubbles?! Ditch him.

2. Watch him go through a self-checkout machine
More than three unexpected items in the bagging area and he has to go.

3. Take a train or Tube with him
You will see how he reacts to standing etiquette/giving up seats etc but more crucially whether he tries to press the button to open the doors before it is illuminated. If he does, or presses the button on the Tube door, when he knows it’s automatic and is merely there for decoration, he’s a dolt and you should send him whence he came.

4. Sit opposite him during spaghetti for an exclusive preview of what oral sex will be like. Continue reading 10 tests every potential boyfriend must pass before you commit

33 lies you will tell yourself on a first date

1. If I arrive first it will make me look responsible and also like I care and that I’m… not flighty. It will not make me seem overly keen and boring, with nothing else to do tonight, or indeed ever.

2. Arriving late will make me seem mysterious and sexy, and he’ll be panting at my arrival, staring eagerly at the door. He’ll be so pleased I haven’t stood him up that he’ll be overjoyed to see me and we will fall immediately in love.

3. Oh well, it’s better than being stuck in the house.

4. This is not too soon after my breakup. I’m ready.

5. I’m glad I didn’t eat before I came out.

6. I hope he doesn’t stare at my arse when I go to the bar.

7. I’m not going to get drunk.

8. I’m not drunk.

9. He is so wrong if he thinks I am getting another drink.

10. It’s definitely his round. Continue reading 33 lies you will tell yourself on a first date

7 things to ask yourself before you contact the person you kissed at midnight at New Year

What is it about those magic bells as December turns into January that make us desperate to lock lips with someone?

Despite having a perfectly acceptable time all night flying solo, the impending “clanging chimes of doom” (thanks Band Aid) of New Year suddenly make us feel more alone than ever. And most years, if your significant other isn’t already a) a thing that exists and b) somewhere nearby trying to pee into a beer can to save having to go to the loo, you end up reaching out to someone for a New Year snog.

But is this the start of something beautiful or merely a germ-swapping exercise to make sure you get most of January off work thanks to snog-flu?

Before you start tapping out your “So…? How’s it going?” text, run through this very quick checklist. Continue reading 7 things to ask yourself before you contact the person you kissed at midnight at New Year