Romance For The Rest Of Us
Ready for romance tips and insights that will help you delight your partner, open their heart, and maybe get you both lucky?!
Cathy: Do you have a couple quick tips you can give?
Reid: Yes, I do! I teach a workshop on this. I think it’s very interesting when you start talking about romance. So my quick tips: Stop thinking about romance, like a “Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus” thing because romance is easier if you don’t think about it as a gender issue.
Reid: Mostly because, when you start thinking about things in terms of gender, it can really easily trigger people that you’re pissed off at. Like, not trigger them – well, it can trigger them too – but trigger you about, you know, “My four ex-boyfriends or my ex-girlfriend, they all did…” you know, fill in the blank.
Cathy: And you start comparing and contrasting.
Reid: Yeah, and then you’re just angry.
Reid: So I like to think of romance from the perspective of something a little bit kookier. Go figure right? I come up with kooky.
Cathy: Reid? Yes.
Reid: Think about romance like you’re either a dog or a cat. Now there’s probably otters and penguins and things like that, but don’t go there yet.
Cathy: Any ostriches?
Reid: Yeah, that too. So the idea of… Think of romance from a perspective that you’re oriented like a cat, when it comes to romance. Or I’m a dog, and the distinction is… Because it has nothing to do with men or women, because some men are like this; some women are like this too.
A cat… What is romantic to a cat is anything that proves I was thinking about you before you walked into the room. All of a sudden, that kind of forethought is romantic. “Oh! You were thinking about me.”
Cathy: Can you give us a couple of examples?
Reid: I will, in a minute. Okay, and anything like a “dog” orientation is, dogs find it romantic, anything that affirms them or approves them, like you’re a good dog. That’s like “Oh, I’m a good dog.”
Now where the wires get crossed is, dogs – for those of us who are dog owners – they’re not thinking of us until we put the keys in the door. And then they’re SO happy you’re home! “Oh my God! Oh my God! Oh my God! ” Best thing ever!
Reid: That’s not very romantic to a cat. The cat’s like, “Why weren’t you thinking of me before you heard the keys in the door?” The dog’s like “What do you mean? You’re here right now! Oh my God! Oh my God! Oh my God! Best thing ever!”
Reid: The example, in a strict dating sense, is – and we’ll gender it for the example, right? – you and I have a date night.
Cathy: Uh huh.
Reid: And then… It’s date night, and we get together, and I’m like, “So where do you want to go for dinner?” and you’re like “(inhales) You didn’t even take the time to make a reservation.”
Reid: Now as a dog, the reason I didn’t take the time to make a reservation is because I don’t know what you want to eat tonight, when we booked this, you know, however many days ago!
Cathy: Mmm hmm.
Reid: So I’m being thoughtful in that I am leaving the decision for the time of, so that I can check in and make sure that you get exactly what you want.
Cathy: So it sounds like communication could really help that, so if I know that you didn’t choose a restaurant because you were hoping that we’ll find something that really pleases me that night, I’m not going to be as frustrated.
Reid: Yeah. And if I know that, it’s actually not about what we eat….
Reid: …but that I thought of you.
Reid: Then I might be able to beef up my end of it, and think ahead. Admittedly, a little harder for dogs, because we’re not normally thinking of you to begin with.
Cathy: Mmm hmm.
Reid: And that’s so unromantic. But we mean well and we’re very loyal. Like, in the moment, most of us really do really care what you want.
Reid: So for those of you who are oriented like dogs, the flip side of this example is, you’re at work, you’re focused, you’re getting your stuff done, and your new lover or partner calls, and they’re a cat person, and you’re a dog, and they call and they’re like “Hi,” and you’re like “Yep? What’s up?”
Reid: I just called to tell you I was thinking of you, and you’re like “Why are you calling to tell me that you’re thinking of me?” “Well, I just thought it’d be nice.” And then, “I’m busy!”
Reid: And they’re calling to tell you that they’ve been thinking of you because thoughtfulness in that way is how they show that they care, and that’s romantic to them, but for a dog person, we’re like “What’s going on? I don’t know why you’re…”
Cathy: “Now you’re checking up on me?”
Reid: Yeah, like, “What’s up?” So when you can know which one you identify with… And think of it as a continuum. There are some people who are kind of in the middle.
Cathy: Yeah. I like affirmations. I like being told I did a good job.
Cathy: And I love it when someone plans ahead.
Reid: Yeah. It’s very thoughtful. So those are my quick tips. Figure out which one you are, and then try to figure out which one your partner is, or the people that you’re dating, which ones they are. The other thing is to check out the book, “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman, because it talks about different ways that you show that you care or like to feel cared for. And then if you’re in love with a cat person, you find out what their love languages are, and then do a bunch of those things before they get into the room.
Cathy: Mmm hmm.
Reid: And then if you’re a cat person in love with a dog, you basically find their love languages, and you tell them that they’re a good dog.
Cathy: In the moment.
Reid: In those languages, in the moment.
Cathy: So if they love receiving gifts, you’d give them a gift in the moment, and say “That was really beautiful, I appreciate it.”
Reid: Yeah, but you buy them a gift that affirms what they’re into and what they like.
Reid: Not a gift that you think they would like. That doesn’t tell them that they’re a good dog.
Reid: So that’s my quick stuff on romance. Your mileage may vary, and know that I’m not thinking about you.
Cathy: (laughing) Thanks, Reid!
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