Dating Dealbreaker: Scratchy Stubble

When preparing for a date, I never forget to shave my legs.  Everyone knows that hairy legs on a girl are a big turnoff for guys, so we make sure we are always smooth and soft.  But why is it that men do not extend the same courtesy to us?  I’m talking about scratchy stubble–the sharp regrowth that sprouts on the face of a guy who hasn’t shaved for a day (or three).

When I go out on a date, more often than not, I will discover the dude is sporting this prickly stubble when he leans in to kiss me–and proceeds to sandblast my face.  Waking up the next day with a red, dry, flaky chin is par for the course in these cases.  Oftentimes this damage takes a couple days to heal before my chin stops flaking off like a dandruff commercial.  In the meantime, I have to try to camouflage the flaky mess so that I can kiss other boys.  (Hey, no damaging the merchandise, buddy.  You break it, you buy it).  In one extreme case, the guy’s stubble was so bad that my raw chin actually pussed and scabbed over for a week!

Are men completely oblivious to how painful this condition can be? Or do they just think the stubble makes them look rugged and tough? Girls have softer, more sensitive skin than men (thanks to estrogen), and maybe men just don’t get that they are hurting us.  So, male readers, let’s do a little demonstration.  Close your eyes.  Lightly stroke the inside of your wrist.  Imagine this soft patch of skin is your girlfriend’s face.  Now, vigorously rub your wrist up against your stubbly face.  (Ouch, right?)

The good news, boys, is that this condition is easily fixable with a 99-cent razor.  Buy one and use it.  In fact, the geniuses over at Dollar Shave Club will be happy to send you all the blades you need for just a few dollars a month.  If a guy shows up for a date with me with a prickly face, I will generally ignore it once, but I will definitely cut short any makeout sessions to save my complexion.  When the guy does arrive clean-shaven, I’ll make a big point of complimenting him and telling him how smooth his face is (Men are like dogs, you have to reward good behavior).  On the other hand, if showing up with stubble becomes a pattern, I will call you out on it (nicely).  I might say something like “I really like it when you shave for me. Will you please shave next time?”

Last night I went out on a first date with a guy that I thought I really liked (from meeting him the previous weekend).  And I had a great time–right up until the end of the night when he kissed me and revealed a bad case of chin stubble.  Within minutes of making out, I could feel my face and neck being scraped raw.  I pulled away and started to say goodnight.  Apparently the damage was quite visible, because the guy asked me with alarm, “Do you have sensitive skin?” Well, yes, I do have quite delicate porcelain skin.  He gestured at my now-bright-red neck and chest.  “Is that a sunburn, or is that from me?”

“It’s from you,” I said gently.

“Wow, sorry about that, I’ll be sure to shave next time,” he promised.  He did seem genuinely aggrieved.

So, maybe that’s it?  Men don’t want to hurt us, but they just don’t know that they are because we girls are queens at zipping our lips and suffering in silence.  So, boys, here’s your memo from girls everywhere.  Please shave before you kiss us because you destroy our faces when you don’t.  (Not to mention the extreme pain inflicted down south if you try to kiss us DOWN THERE with stubble on your face). Ouch.

July 6, 2012. Dating Dealbreakers. 1 comment.

Dating Dealbreaker: The Cheapskate

I may still not entirely know what I’m looking for in a man, but over my years of dating, I have discovered a lot of things I’m definitely NOT looking for!  And so, as a public service to men everywhere, I’m going to share what some of those Dating Dealbreakers are.  Today’s installment is about the dreaded Cheapskate.

First, let’s lay out some ground rules.  Who pays for the date, anyway?  I’m rather old-fashioned, and I believe that whoever asks for the date should pay.  As a Rules Girl, I never ask men out on dates, and therefore THE MAN SHOULD ALWAYS PAY.  Period.  I will always offer to pay half and halfheartedly reach for my wallet, but if the man actually takes me up on my offer, then God help him.  If we split the check on the first date, I’m actually pretty cool with that and will chalk it up to “Well I guess he didn’t like me that much.”  If he asks me out again after that, I might give him another chance, but if splitting the check becomes a pattern, then that’s a dealbreaker.

Why?  Well, splitting the check is a big red flag that the guy is probably just a cheapskate in general.  And nobody likes a cheapskate.  If you continue to date this dude, you can look forward to lots of cheap dates and squabbling over amounts (“I had a slice of cheese pizza, but you had the pepperoni, so you owe an extra 50 cents.”)  On your honeymoon, you’ll probably find yourself strapped to the top of a bus in India, since the air-conditioned compartment was “too expensive” at $2.  And once you have kids, well, snaggle-toothed little Jenny doesn’t really need those braces, anyway.  (“Do you think money grows on trees?”)

They say that money troubles are the #1 cause of divorce, so it’s important to find a guy with similar financial values to your own.  As for me, I’m generally responsible with money and save for the future, but at the same time, I do enjoy the finer things in life and am willing to pay for them.  So, I need a guy who does too.  That’s why I’m always on the lookout for:

Top Red Flags that the dude is a cheapskate:

1.  Splitting the check.  Or (worse) letting the girl pick up the tab.  The man should always pay for the first 10 dates–up until the point when you’re in an official relationship, and then it’s fine to begin to split things more evenly.  But during the courtship process, the man needs to be the man and pick up the damn check.  No exceptions.

2.  Complaining about how much things cost.  I know, it’s ridiculous that cocktails are $18 here.  But you picked the place, and I don’t want to hear a word of complaint about how much anything costs on the date.  Major turnoff.

3.  Picking cheap dates.  This one is tricky because since the man is paying, he obviously should pick only dates that he can afford.  And actually, some of the funnest dates I’ve ever been on cost next to nothing.  A picnic in the park is ultra cheap and a great romantic date.  What I’m talking about here as the red flag, though, are the dudes who always want to meet for “drinks” without ever buying you dinner.  Presumably because dinner is too expensive, and really he’s just trying to get you drunk, anyway.  We’re onto you, cheapskates.

At this point, I’m sure the men reading this blog are annoyed (“Is she just looking for a free meal ticket?”)  The answer is no.  I have a job and my own money and am perfectly capable of taking care of myself.  But, it’s nice to let a guy take care of me for the evening.  It’s a test run for the whole relationship: how does it feel to let this guy take care of me?  That’s really the whole point of the dating process, isn’t it?

There’s probably an evolutionary component to all this–i.e., women are looking for providers for themselves and their children.  I have a male friend who says he makes a point of always buying dinner for a woman on a date.  “Feeding a woman makes her trust you,” he says.  Something to keep in mind, boys, the next time you’re tempted to split the check.

June 26, 2012. Dating Dealbreakers. 12 comments.