After perusing the dating-books section, I want to throw most of them across the room.
Blythe Newsome: At 39, I'm back in the dating world. When I was of a younger dating age, my girlfriends and I would go to clubs and socials with great expectations that we would each meet our partner for life -- the Prince Charming we read about in the story books; our very own Richard Gere who would come to our work and sweep us off our feet like he did Debra Winger at the end of "An Officer and a Gentleman." We didn't focus on the reality that 50 percent of us would go through a divorce. Now I am one of those statistics. So here I am back in the dating world.
The dating scene has changed tremendously in 15 years, and I have gotten older and a bit rusty at it. I actually had one guy ask me out and then, when I accepted, send me a text that said, "With the gf tonight let's talk tomorrow." I may be learning the text lingo, but doesn't "gf" mean "girlfriend"? Where do I begin to learn the art of dating in the 21st century? So far, I've had a few good experiences and a few not-so-good ones. I decided it was time to get back to the basics and check out the self-help section at the bookstore. After glancing at a few titles, I've decided that maybe being single isn't so bad.
"Dating Up: Dump the Schlump and Find a Quality Man"
According to this book, there are quality men out there -- and since someone is going to marry them, why shouldn't it be you? How about "because my 'quality man' locator seems to be broken"? On my most recent date, the guy asked me, "Do you really have six kids? Because I have a rule that I can't date a woman with more than three." I have a radio show about my life with six kids, I've been on a reality show about my life with six kids, I write about my six kids. It's not like I'm trying to hide them! I am so exhausted just flipping through the pages of this book. It recommends that I do a very pricey "mud mask" in an effort to glow, so I can attract that quality man. I feel like every day I wear a mask of yogurt, pudding, dirt and marker-smudges on my face -- and in my hair, and on my clothes. I have yet to see quality men swarm around me!
"Better Single Than Sorry: A No-Regrets Guide to Loving Yourself and Never Settling"
I grabbed this book with great anticipation, thinking that maybe this was what I needed: to focus on loving myself and to find contentment with just being with me. Then I saw that it had been written by none other than Jen Schefft, the former "Bachelor" winner who became the 2004 "Bachelorette." Quick refresher: She got dumped both times! That makes me feel real good: Here is a woman who, after going on national TV to find true love -- not once, but twice -- has given up, and now just writes about loving herself and being okay with being alone.
And finally I find the winner -- the perfect book for advice on finding true love again:
Drunk, Divorced, and Covered in Cat Hair
Now this is my kind of book. I don't drink much and I don't have (or really even like) cats, but I have the divorced part covered. This book really doesn't offer dating advice, but it did help me to remember what a comical journey it has been going from marriage to divorce and back into the dating world.
After three hours of searching for the perfect self-help book about dating, I think I'll just sit by myself on the couch and read awhile. Forget self-help: I'm going to read a trashy romance novel that says you're never too old to believe in Prince Charming and the happily-ever-after.
|Blythe Newsome is a single mother of six children and host of a morning radio show. Featured on an episode of "Supernanny," her life and what hides underneath her couch cushions have been seen by many. "Flirting with Forty" details the journey she takes to get her life back.|