Blog Posts by Tina Tessina

  • Dear Dr. Romance: On Dating at Work

    Click here to view the video.

    Work can be the ideal environment for falling in love: you are in close proximity for a long period of time, you may have developed a good working partnership, and from there it is a short step to romance. However, workplace romance can present big problems. Dr. Romance helps you figure out the right and wrong ways to do it.

    Dr. Romance on Dating in the Workplace

    The problem of dating co-workers is what happens when the relationship doesn't work out. Still, many people find themselves attracted to people at work -- it's actually an environment that's similar to the college environment, which is the easiest place to date.

    Research shows that the workplace is where the majority of couples meet. There's a reason for this: Unlike online dating, newspaper ads, singles events and speed dating, the office gives you a chance to actually get to know and even bond with a person before declaring your interest.

    The reason so many people date in

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  • Dear Dr. Romance: Why is There No Support Line for Men?

    Dear Dr. Romance:

    Thank you for writing "Lighten Up - Cures for Marital Boredom." Please allow me to give my opinion as to my priorities. I always had the idea to start from the bottom of your list and go upwards. Work together to create a partnership. Sex is important in life, but not number one as to your list. Unless a couple iron out their difficulties, of what ever nature. the problem remains hidden for next time to crop up. If a wife at home works as a maid, then a cook, phones her friends to know news about them, and by 6:30 PM she is off to bed; is this the married life?

    It was never my intention, in nearly 40 years together, I received 5 birthday cards, but funny enough, she reminds every one three weeks before her birthday. If she doesn't treat me the same way I treat her, how can we have a smooth life? I never missed her birthday/or apresent. But she asks: How much does it cost? The price is beyond, it's the respect. Perhaps that's what we could afford.

    In my

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  • Dear Dr. Romance: I Do My Best to Stay in My Loving Heart

    Dear Dr. Romance:

    Quite honestly, all the info in "Lighten Up - Cures for Marital Boredom" is great. But if your list of reccomendations were a test, we have failed everyone or most of them. I am walking lightly around here, just knowing, somehow, somewhere in time, we will find our way back into each others space, or away from all this, when the survival mode is no more, for now, I just do the best I can to stay in my loving heart. Have a delicious day.

    Dear Reader:

    They're not a test; they're things for you to try out instead of being resigned try having fun. If he won't do it with you, then try doing it by yourself but in his presence. Laugh at the funnies, turn on a comedy show, put on some good music and dance around. You'll feel better, and he will eventually be tempted to have some fun, too.

    Dr. Romance on Getting What You Want:

    If you have difficulty in knowing what you want and communicating it, try these steps:

    1. Get clear about what you want: You

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  • Dear Dr Romance: How Do You Dump Someone Without Hurting Them?

    Dear Dr. Romance:

    I am in a bit of a weird situation... I'm 16 and I am engaged to a guy I only met 2 months ago. I thought he was joking so I just went along with it, and it was only when he gave me a ring and started talking about venues and dates that I realised he was serious. I only started dating him because I felt sorry for him. He really isn't my type of guy - he's obsessed with drugs and alcohol, and he does crazy things like jump off roofs and race cars, and he is always in some kind of trouble with some other druggies. He has been put in hospital twice because he gets into fights. I really don't know what to do! I am way too young to get married! But I don't want to tell him in case he does something stupid to 'prove himself' - one time I tried to break up with him and he cut my name into his arms with a shard of glass.

    Dear Reader:

    Okay, this is what happens when you don't take relationships seriously. This guy is obsessive, and therefore dangerous. He hurt

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  • How Not to Fight

    In my counseling practice, couples are often surprised to learn they can communicate and solve problems effectively without fighting; but sometimes you may find it's not so easy to give up your struggles. You may have trouble letting go of the fighting habit because of two factors: social expectations (expectations the people around you have about marriage) and myths (common beliefs not based on fact.)

    Myths and Expectations about Fighting

    There are many myths and expectations about fighting in marriage. Couples come into my office frequently believing that fighting is a necessary part of being a couple; that all married couples fight; and it's a normal part of marriage. But the fact is that fighting accomplishes nothing, and it isn't necessary for couples to argue, to yell, or to have heated discussions to get problems solved. Hanging on to these ideas makes it difficult to let go of fighting.

    Some of the most prevalent myths about fighting are:

    • Myth #1: Fighting
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  • Handling the Green-Eyed Monster

    I can't escape it, it's in the news every day, and it fills my counseling office. Yesterday, the news told of a four-year-old who was shot to death by his own father, because the father was jealous of his divorced wife's new relationship. "O, beware... of jealousy; it is the green-eyed monster" wrote William Shakespeare in the sixteenth century. In four hundred years, we don't seem to have been able to tame or conquer this monster. Jealousy is still very present with us, and rears its ugly head often in all relationships. It disturbs me that so many people seem to think it's OK to be jealous, so I thought it might be valuable to explore it.

    What Is Jealousy?

    The experts differ about the nature of the monster. "Jealousy," writes sex researcher Arno Karlen in Threesomes, "can mean as many things as love or intimacy. It involves various combinations of fear, suspicion, envy, rage, competitive failure, humiliation, grief, self-contempt, betrayal, and abandonment. Freud [and

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  • Handling Anxiety Effectively

    Eight tips for decreasing anxiety and living more peacefully.

    We are all in a time of high stress, and national disasters often bring up fear. If these fears are not dealt with, they can lead to "acting out" behavior, such as drinking too much or creating relationship, work or money problems as a distraction. To avoid these kinds of problems, follow these simple steps for resolving your fear and anxiety.

    1. Learn to recognize the signs of your own anxiety. If you can't sleep, you worry a lot, you "ruminate" or obsess about negative possibilities, or you're unusually irritable or needy, you are probably anxious.

    2. Give yourself a chance to complain and express your fear. When you're facing the involuntary changes that are the result of a disaster, you will have some resistance and objections to dealing with it. Allow yourself some time to complain and be unhappy about the situation. Express as many of the negative feelings and thoughts as possible, either verbally or on paper. If your fear is really overwhelming, a therapist can help

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  • Dr. Romance Happiness Tip: Creating Connections: Draw Them In

    Many years ago an Edwin Markham poem inspired me, and I've tried to live by it:

    "Outwitted"

    He drew a circle that shut me out -
    Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
    But Love and I had the wit to win:
    We drew a circle that took him in!

    As Markham says, we could see people who are distant or rejecting as upsetting, tempting us to call them bad names. But drawing them in with love works so much better. As I've written before, almost all of my genetic family are long gone, and I don't have that connection to draw on to surround myself with love, but that hasn't prevented me from drawing people in.

    There are more kinds of love than birth families, romance and marriage. Relationships are a precious resource, especially if your genetic family is far away, or doesn't get along particularly well. Not only does it take a "village" (community) to raise a child, but in our mobile and fast-paced society, a sense of community, family and connectedness helps us to

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  • Dear Dr. Romance: My Best Friend is Leading Me On. What Do I Do?

    Dear Dr. Romance:

    My best friend is leading me on. What do I do? My best friend has been leading me on for quite a while. We flirt a lot but we still aren't dating. A month ago, we confessed that we liked each other, except he wasn't ready for a relationship. I was okay with that. But now it just seems like I'm falling into the friends with benefits category. Today he took me out for a walk. He put his arm around my shoulder and I put my arm around his waist. It was out of the ordinary.

    My friends always comment on how we're practically dating. I won't ask him out because I know he will say no. A few weeks ago my friends talked to him about it and he got very upset from the matter. He seems to think that he always screws up a relationship, but doing nothing is screwing it up even more. What should I do?

    Dear Reader:

    This relationship sounds like it's going nowhere. Being friends with benefits will only get you farther away from a real relationship with him. Start

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  • Getting to Yes

    Find out immediately, as you are speaking, if you are communicating well with your partner.

    The average person pays more attention to what she's saying or thinking about than what she is hearing, or how her words are "landing" on the other person. This self-involvement gets worse during an argument. You can become a much more effective communicator by using "attentive speaking" a simple and highly effective technique that will help you pay attention to how well you're communicating, whether it's with your partner, your children, or extended family, or co-workers.

    "How am I supposed to know what he (she) wants?" is probably the most worried about question in relationships. Most people don't want to be rejected, criticized or otherwise get the results of guessing wrong about what someone else wants. Most of us want a "yes" answer when we ask a question, so we want to ask the right question, at the right time, from the right person. The trouble is, how are we supposed to know what's right?

    Since most of our interaction happens through conversation, here's a

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Pagination

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