So it took me a while to finish the Dr. Phil relationship book, Love Smart. Not because it was filled with esoteric notions that took time to sink in, but because my years of watching Law and Order has taught me many things, including how to spot a cult leader.
And Love Smart is an induction into the Dr. Phil Cult.
First, he starts by complimenting you. You are a fabulous, wonderful woman that certainly doesn’t need a man to complete her or make her happy. Then he turns on you. But if you insist on wanting a man in your life, then you are going to need to do a lot of work. You are desperate and everyone knows it and nothing repels a potential mate like the smell of desperation. You also have to start loving yourself, because right now you don’t. Oh, and you are going to have to stop making all those same stupid mistakes you have been making. Don’t know what I am talking about? Well, why don’t we look at all your failed relationships and see what you did wrong. Finally, he reassures you that no matter how screwed up you are (and believe him, you are screwed up) he can save you.
So every time I found myself thinking, “Wow, that makes a lot of sense.” I forced myself to put the book down.
Unfortunately all this stop-and-go reading left me a little befuddled at the end of it. The last line in particular, “And on a cold winter’s night a lonely dog howled at a distant moon” made me wonder if I hadn’t accidentally finished the last of the Twilight novels instead.
As such, I had to go back and review my notes and my worksheets (yes, I completed the worksheets. I take loving smart very seriously) to fully understand just what Dr. Phil was telling me.
Okay, I now knew that my Mr. 80 percent (because, ladies, there are no perfect men out there, we have to be willing to compromise and settle for Mr. Almost Perfect) would be social, intelligent, funny, honest, supportive, motivated and tall (I decided I could live with a guy that wasn’t street-smart, unpredictable, disciplined or still have a full head of hair).
In Chapter Three I learned more about who I was. According to Dr. Phil, dating was little more than marketing yourself. And to better market yourself, you had better know the product. So I am smart, pretty, athletic, competitive, social, funny and tall.
Oh, and did I mention I like to have sex.
You would think this last part wasn’t very important, but after i got through the marketing myself section and the “finding your inner bride” section where we worked on my domestic skills and my looks and my weight and my style. We then covered where I should be hunting (man, do I love hunting metaphors), and we reviewed my “Guy-Q.” Dr. Phil then taught me how to determine if the guy I caught measured up or if I should throw him back (oh good, a fishing metaphor too), we finally got to the “Bag ‘em, Tag ‘em, Take ‘em Home” section where I learned how to get him to take it to the next level. Also known as the art of the negotiation section.
In this section I learned that men aren’t necessarily afraid to commit, they just don’t share women’s sense of urgency. After all, they are not sitting there with a big expiration date stamped across their bellies. So, we need to make them sense our urgency.
How do we do that? By withholding sex of course.
Oh, and appealing to their competitive side by not always being available to them.
And this isn’t just Dr. Phil saying this, he cites a survey done by Rutgers University which lists as the number one reason why men will not commit to marriage is because they don’t need to buy the cow when they can get the milk for free.
Did I mention I love being compared to a cow. Seriously, I do. Almost as much as I love being compared to fried fish.
But wait, in the last chapter (which of course was most fresh in my mind), Dr. Phil also told me that I don’t need to try to be someone I am not. And I am someone that likes sex. So, how am I to get a commitment from a man if I want to have sex just as much as he does. Does this mean I don’t deserve a love to last a lifetime? Didn’t Dr. Phil tell me I was wonderful and fabulous and deserved just that sort of love.
And that is when the wheels in my pretty little head started to turn. Of course. It was right there the whole time. I need to keep a piece on the side until I get the three karats on my ring finger.
Dr. Phil really is a genius.
I mean, how else am I suppose to get the one I want, without sacrificing who I am. When we get to the point where I am ready to take it to the next level, and so is he (so to speak), I will simply tell him that he isn’t getting any nookie from my cookie (or whatever) until I have a ring on my finger. Even then, we should probably wait until the honeymoon, I mean, wouldn’t that make it more special. I will then go on to explain that until he is ready to make this commitment to me, I will continue to utilize my booty call (whose number I haven’t erased from my cell phone), because honesty is always the best policy and this knowledge of another man getting my goodies will appeal to his competitive side. Right?
I’ll even let him keep a piece on the side until we make the long walk down the aisle. After all, if they are having sex, I obviously don’t have to worry about him leaving me for her.
If only I had known how useful this book was I would have read it when my mom first got it for me.