We all know finding a good guy is tough enough. Good dating advice may even be harder to come by. Which is why we turned to Steven Ward, host of VH1's "Tough Love"
and now "Tough Love Couples
After a few seasons of going to the mat with Americans in bad relationships, we figured he might know a thing of two about love. This time around, Ward and his mom, Joann, will counsel six couples on the verge of getting engaged on whether their relationships will really last. Last night, they put the first twosome to the test.
We decided to do the same with Ward. During a quiet moment, Lemondrop sat the professional matchmaker down to ask him this: What makes a girl datable? How do you keep a relationship exciting? And it's 2010: Should a girl ask a guy out?
Read on to hear his tips on how you can be luckier in love. Although we should say up front, we definitely didn't agree with everything
he had to say. In fact, some of it made us feel like we were dating in "Pleasantville," circa 1952. But see what you think.How can you tell if a man just isn't interested in you?
He's distracted. He's on his cell phone. He's looking at other people. Or if he's only talking about himself. On the other hand, if a guy asks you questions, and he focuses on you, and he makes a point of ignoring any other distractions, he's probably interested.
What are some surprising turn-ons for a guy?
If you're out and just trying to attract someone's attention, body language. Good posture -- holding your chin up, your shoulders back, your chest out. A good smile is very important because men want to believe you have a healthy energy level, and you have a positive attitude. And you can tell that about a person just by observing them from across the room.
Personal style is really important: It's OK to look sexy, but also dress classy. By which I mean, looking confident, fun and approachable as opposed to baring cleavage and skin. But that's just my definition of sexy.
What if your natural style is more low-maintenance?
Most men I know appreciate a beautiful woman with her hair pulled back in a ponytail or a pair of sweatpants that hug her legs. Also tights with a camisole always looks good.
And what about the shy girls?
The double look -- you look once, you look away, you look back, and you look away. The double look goes really far -- we learn to do this when we're children. As adults, all a guy has to do is keep looking at you. And when he sees you looking away, he's going to keep watching.
It kind of sounds like you advocate men and women playing mind games with each other.
What a lot of women do -- and men do this, too -- is they set the other person up for failure. For example a guy says to you, "Hey, I'd like to take you out this weekend." And you say, "Great. Sounds good, just give me a call." And he asks what you want to do, and you tell him, "Whatever you want to do." You're setting him up for failure. If you told him that you haven't been out for dinner in a while [Editor's note: who does this?]
or that you like sushi or Mexican, now he knows what your likes are. He knows what you want to do. He can take the ball and run with it.
And does that just work for men, or can women experience the same thing?
There are different gender roles, and I don't see anything wrong with that. I think men and women have different responsibilities when it comes to making a good impression on another person, especially in the very beginning. For women, I say be as amenable as possible, as accommodating, as amiable, as up for anything. If you're a vegetarian and he wants to take you to a steakhouse, don't complain about it -- eat a salad. Find something where you can make do with the situation, and don't put any negativity out there. For a man, his responsibility is to be as entertaining and as fun for you as possible.
So .... what do you think about a girl asking a guy out?
There's absolutely nothing wrong with that. I admire that. I appreciate that more than anything. A lot of guys are used to being forced into the driver's seat. They have to be the decision makers, the authoritarian, the one to make the plan and put it into action. When you meet somebody who wants to take that responsibility and is willing to do the work instead of making you have to do it, it's very flattering and very reassuring.
So now you've got your boyfriend, how can you keep that alive?
You have to constantly reinvent your relationship and remind that person why you're with them in the first place. It's all about giving -- you've got to give to get. If you act that way in your love life, there's a good chance you'll be disappointed, but eventually somebody will really appreciate it.
More Dating & Love on Lemondrop
+ The Difference Between the Male and Female Brain
+ What I Learned From 20 Years of Dating
+ Study Says Guys Want You to Go for the Steak