Tag Archive for: holidays

Dear Damona: DTR Conversation & Dating Dry Spell


Happy holidays, Lovers! 

If you’re anything like us, you both love and loathe this time of year. It’s a time to connect with loved ones but it’s also a time of major stress. Which gifts to get, who to spend the holidays with, how to bring in the new year and when you add being single to the mix that adds a whole layer of anxiety and stress for many of our listeners and maybe for you, too. 

But we want you to remember that we’re here to help you at all times of year and when the going gets tough we’re not taking a break. We’re doubling down!

So this week we’re answering some listener questions!



Can you date someone who doesn’t share your political values?

Hi Damona, I have a dilemma. I’ve been dating a white guy for about 3 months. Last Saturday we had a conversation about politics and he has opposite viewpoints on subjects like immigration and border politics (topics that are dear to me). Since our conversation, I am completely taken aback and haven’t answered his texts because I honestly feel like i can’t date someone who doesn’t share my values or ideas. What do I do? 


How do you start to date after a 6-year dry period?

I’ve been single since I was 19 and I’m now 30. In that time I’ve hooked up with one guy once when I was 20 and then another guy that I like a lot but it didn’t work out for maybe once a year from when I was 22. Altogether, I haven’t had sex for 6 years. I would like to get back out there but I think right now I’m dealing with a mix of fear and because I’ve been self partnered for so long I don’t have the desire to really deal with having to consider someone else. How do I deal with getting over this fear and getting back into dating?


How to be better at texting?

I’m so bad at texting. I wish I knew how to text a woman to make her more interested in going out with me. I seem to always have the opposite effect. 


Do you think men and women, who used to date, can be friends? 


When should I have the DTR conversation and how should I do it? I’ve been going out with a guy for a little over a month that I met through Bumble. 


How should I feel about my new bf having a preplanned 2 week trip to Mexico in January with an ex? They are going to a wedding from someone in her family. He stressed that she’s just a friend and a lot like a sister. He could tell I wasn’t happy but I told him that I don’t have a reason to not trust him since this is new. Did I do the right thing?




Happy Holidays, Loves! If you’re anything like me you both love and load this time of year. It’s a time to connect with loved ones, but also a time of major stress, which gifts to get, who to spend the holidays with, who to bring with you to holiday events, how to bring in the new year. And when you add the anxiety and the stress of being single to the mix, that adds a whole other layer for many of my listeners, and maybe for you too. But I want you to remember that I’m here to help you at all times of year and when the going gets tough. I’m not taking a break. I’m doubling down. And maybe to the dismay of producer Leah over here who’s been busting her buns to make this show for you every week. I’m still going to give you shows all throughout the holidays. How are you hanging in there?


Leah Schell  0:57  

Honestly though, I’m having fun. I love doing Dates me. 


Damona  1:02  

Oh gosh, this show’s loving you. And honestly, you guys, I just have to give credit to Leah. She doesn’t know I’m going to say this but I just have to give all the credit because she is the reason that this show gets to you every week on time when you need it. She’s the one that helps me funnel all the questions that you send. She brings so much so much joy to this show. She brings so much heart and I just really have to say this holiday season how grateful I am. Oh my god. I’m like, I’m like blushing over here. So I don’t make my show before I get all teary eyed but I I really just do appreciate Leah. So maybe give her a little shout out when you comment on this episode The next time please. Thank you. And I also just want to shout out I had the great pleasure of meeting one of our longtime listeners, Catherine Hey girl you out there. Catherine recognize me out in about an La and we had a good long talk about her love situation. And honestly, I left feeling really excited for her. And for the possibilities that lay ahead, not just because she’s listening to the show, obviously I love that but because she’s really walking the walk, she’s hired a matchmaker, she works on herself care. She’s on dating apps, and she’s showing up in a big way for herself and for her relationship future. And that’s what it takes to make a change. First, you get clarity on what you want, and then you show up, and then you keep showing up, no matter how dire your dating or relationship challenge seems for you right now. It will shift if you put in the effort to make it shift. And that is a wonderful thing. I have one of my former clients who was expecting her first baby. I have another client who was in a new relationship. I have someone from my 30 day dating playbook program, who let me know she’s celebrating her her second anniversary this month. And I want all of that for all of you that are listening to this podcast right now. And if you’re ready to make a change for the new year, I will, I will tell you about how you can join my upcoming free webinar on changing bad dating patterns, and how you can get live coaching from me at the end of the show. And for you overachievers that already know you want to be in that you can go right now to the show, show notes and sign up. But first, I want to address your questions so many of your questions have been submitted this fall and every once in a while we like to do a special episode dedicated to you and dedicated to giving you the advice in love that you need. So without further ado, I bring you


Leah Schell 3:43  

Dear damona What does his text me so frustrated? He’s just not that intonation. I’ve always been battle. I’m ready for miracles.


Damona  3:57  

Modern love Made Simple. This is day two. mates with damona Hoffman. So producer Leah has been cataloging your recent questions. And Leah, I want to hear what is on everyone’s mind.


Leah Schell  4:10  

First we have a question from Instagram. She says, Hi damona I have a dilemma. I’ve been dating a white guy for about three months. Last Saturday, we had a conversation about politics, and he has opposite views on subjects like Immigration and Border politics or topics that are near and dear to me. Since our conversation, I am completely taken aback and haven’t answered his tax because I honestly feel like I can’t date someone who doesn’t share my values or ideas. What do I do?


Damona  4:38  

Ooh, ciao. This is this is complicated. Obviously, you guys know I come from a cross cultural cross religious background. We just talked about that last week. But at the same time, I’ve been coaching people on navigating cross cultural challenges for the last How long have I been doing this? 15 years and I What I’ve seen is a big shift towards politics. Being a bigger source of contention and relationship, frustration than race, religion, anything that used to be such a major divisive issue. And the data really supports this. Now we are divided on political issues. We are divided on things like immigration. And I have to say it’s not something to be taken lightly. You know, I’m super optimistic. I’m going to show I believe that many relationship challenges can be worked through with communication. But I wonder if this challenge speaks to a fundamental difference in value systems, and the way that you look at the world, which you also know if you listen to the show regularly, that’s one of the major tenants of long term compatibility, shared values and I don’t know specifically what the fight ended up being about or this heated conversation. But if you’re feeling like you are really diametrically opposed on different sides where you can even have a conversation about these issues and come to some sort of an understanding, you don’t have to agree on everything. But you just have to have enough space to understand the other person’s point of view, and to be able to accept and allow that their experience is different than yours. Their perspective is different than yours. And that’s okay. You can each hold one on one another’s point of view in consideration, while also still strongly believing in what you believe. here’s the here’s the answer. Is there a way to move forward with this? It’s been about three months. Yes, there is a way to move forward. This is where the going gets tough. I find relationships work in threes. You’ve heard me talk about my three date rule. You need to decide, wait until the third day to decide if someone is worth investing more time. And I also find that at three months, that is when most relationships either take off or fizzle out. Because this is when you’re really being yourself. This is now he’s letting down his guard, he is being authentically the person that he is. And he’s sharing with you his authentic thoughts, which, in a way requires a lot of vulnerability and especially at a time when we know it’s so divisive. The fact that he wants to share that with you does speak well of his his trust in you to be able to share that perspective. However, if you’re at the point where you cannot see his point of view, and you feel that his point of view is somehow challenging your own, then that is a major here A major turning point in the relationship and you have to decide if you play this relationship done in down the road, three months, six more months a year. Could you be a part of this person’s world? Could you be a part of their family if you decided you wanted to move forward with long term partnership or marriage, or maybe having children. And so these are the tough conversations that need to be drawn out. The difference in opinion itself is not enough to spell the end of the relationship. It’s how you deal with that information once it comes out. And how he deals with it and whether you can still communicate through the difference in opinion produce really good you have anything else you’re a Texan. So I imagine you deal with


Leah Schell  8:43  

Yeah, actually it says like this a lot. Yeah, this reminded me of my first like long term relationship. In college. I come from a like a very, very conservative background, being from Texas and I think like when I started college, like my friends litical views were like really like opposite of what they are now. And the guy that I dated, he was very, very liberal. And like, it was like a whole like four year relationship of like him, teaching me and just like exposing me to like different, like political points of view. And dude, thank you, if you’re listening to this for like teaching me all those things and putting in all that effort, it must have been awful. But even though that, like relationship didn’t end up working in the end, like I know that, like, you can definitely, like, have conversations and like teach people about your point of view. And, like, it doesn’t have to be the end of the race relationship. But


Damona  9:42  

did he come at you like, my perspective is right. And let me show you the way.


Leah Schell  9:49  

Yeah, I mean, you know, we were in college and very politically active and so like, there were lots of really heated arguments. But I feel like the times that were most impactful to me It was just more through like actions, not words. And that makes sense. I don’t know exactly how to explain it. But it was more just like three experiences and just like showing me exactly what his life is like, well, and we form our opinions based on our experiences.


Damona  10:17  

So sometimes someone might have one perspective, because that’s what your parents told you, or that’s what you’ve experienced. Right? And if you’re in the right partnership, it should open up your horizons, right? Total. I mean, my politics haven’t really shifted. But I’ll say one thing I really appreciate about my husband is he’s he is able to consider someone else’s point of view, even if it is 180 degrees opposite his own. Right. And I, I really appreciate that and I’m working to can you guys see how hard I’m working here. I’m working to be able to understand that and not not automatically shut down the conversation because that’s what we’re doing right now. No and in love, but also just in life. We’re just shutting down the conversation. And that’s pushing us all further apart. So this is a invitation for deeper discussion. Yeah, totally. More questions, more questions. What else is in the hopper?


Leah Schell  11:15  

More questions? Okay. This one also comes from Instagram. She says, I’ve been single since I was 19. And I’m now 30. And that time, I’ve hooked up with one guy once when I was 20. And then another guy that I like a lot, but it didn’t work out with for maybe once a year from when I was 22. altogether. I haven’t had sex in six years.


Unknown Speaker  11:35  

I was a lot of years. So a lot of years.


Leah Schell  11:38  

I would like to get back out there, but I think I know I’m dealing with a mix of fear because I’ve been self partnered for so long, and I don’t have the desire to really deal with having to consider somebody else. How do I deal with getting over this fear and getting back into dating? I like this to use all partnered.


Damona  11:56  

Yeah, thank you for it. Maybe we inspired you When we were talking about Emma Watson being self partner to use that term, or maybe that’s a term that you’ve used for a lot, but a long time, but I first want to just acknowledge her bravery and vulnerability with even asking this question. I know there are a lot of people listening right now that are dealing with some challenges like this and some things that they might have embarrassment over like not having sex for six years, some for some people, that’s a source of source of embarrassment and not being able to share that with anyone you know, you might not even be able to talk to your best friends about that. So first, I just want to say thank you for sharing that with me and with my audience, anonymously, of course, because that’s the first step in changing patterns or in getting help is just acknowledging what your story is, what your situation is, and then learning how to move through it. So thanks for your bravery with that. Yeah, girl, that’s a long time to be celibate. And in some respects, it sounds like not celibate by choice. I really want to focus in on the part where she’s talking about being self partnered for so long, that she doesn’t have the desire to really deal with having to consider someone else. Again, this person is extremely self aware, because she already knows what the challenges for her. And I have a lot of clients, particularly clients that are out of long term relationships or that are older, that have their life set and have their social circle sad have their patterns and beliefs and behavior set. And they want someone to just fit into the groove. It’s like these are the holes in my life. I want you to be available. At this time. I want you to believe these things. I don’t want you to require too much extra time for me and I want you to enjoy the same things that I enjoy doing. And that’s a really tall order. That’s very hard to To find someone that just fits and meshes with your life. So I’m glad that she’s acknowledging that. But I have to say, if you don’t want to deal with having to consider someone else, you are choosing to stay in a static point of your life, you are choosing to stay there. And, yes, you could have sex, you could probably go online right now and have sex with somebody tonight if you wanted to. But that’s not really what you’re looking for. And I also appreciate that she acknowledges that she has this fear of getting back into dating. But you have to just start at some point you have to start and you have to be willing to expand your life. And I wouldn’t think of it as not wanting to deal with considering someone else. It is a joy to consider someone else and I do hear this a lot like I don’t have to tell someone where I’m coming and going. I, I was super independent person, but the fact that somebody cares, where I’m going to be at a certain time that someone is expecting me to be somewhere or to, to, to communicate with them, or to consider them in my actions is actually a real gift. And that’s an opportunity for growth and for expansion of your life. Think of all the things that this potential partner that you haven’t met, could actually bring into your life could teach, you could could expand your world over. So when you look at it that way, maybe you’re actually depriving yourself of an opportunity. And it’s not about this considering someone else. Or Or maybe it’s the history that you’ve had in the past with relationships, that is making you feel like it’s going to be repeating that again, but it doesn’t happen. You’re rewriting the rules of your life and the rules of your love life. This is your opportunity to do it again and do it differently. So do it mindfully and do it with the intention of having your world get bigger. Instead of keeping your world in the same in the status quo. Don’t stay in stasis, stay in a period of change. More questions, more questions, questions before the break.


Leah Schell  16:25  

Okay, cool. One more question from Instagram from a guy. He says I’m so bad at texting. I wish I knew how to text a woman to make her more interested in going out with me. I seem to always have the opposite effect.


Damona  16:38  

Oh my gosh, texting. That’s a whole other thing. I feel like I should run the texting trap again as a webinar.


Leah Schell  16:48  

Yeah, we get a lot of questions about texting. Do


Damona  16:50  

we get a lot of questions about texting? Look, texting is not a natural state of communication. I know for many of my listeners, That that grew up on phones. It It is because that’s all you’ve known. But when you really think about it, it’s a very new mode of communication. And it’s very specific, short form, short form volleys back and forth with emojis, and gifts and stickers and what it means emoji all these. There’s just all of these mood modifiers you’ve had me heard me talk about how adding things like emojis can change the context. But the I’ll just give you the basic rules of texting and then I will do a whole episode on texting. Feel like I had an episode until I have Oh, how to communicate go back to last season and episode on how to communicate. But I’ll give you the cliff notes. Don’t write too much, you’re probably writing too much and these tax if you’re, if you’re meeting women online and then you’re moving into the tax And she seemed interested in all of a sudden she’s not you have said something that made her run away so you’ve probably said too much or you’ve said something the wrong way and she didn’t know how to interpret it. So keep it short and sweet. overtaxed definitely use an emoji. Not a whole. Not like my kids do a home run of emojis. I don’t like that too. It’s the cutie what is that my granddaddy, your granddaddy? Oh my gosh, that’s, that’s both charming and frightening at the same time. But just one emoji can be very effective to to state your intention because when you’re communicating with someone face to face, you have all of these other inputs of information, you have their intonation, you have their facial expressions, you have their body language, you have so much more to tell you what that person means by it. But when we’re talking about text that’s all stripped away. So first, I would just shorten shorten your texts and try to get offline more quickly. Don’t try to build a report over text because that is something that is really a learned skill and try an emoji or two, but don’t go overboard with it.


Leah Schell  19:14  

I have a questions kind of related to this. More recently, I’ve seen kind of a trend towards doing like voice messages like sending like an actual voice instead of text. Like, what do you think about that? Especially like in the early stages of dating?


Damona  19:30  

It’s funny you would say that because many times when people DM me on Instagram, I respond with a voice message. And everybody like freaks. Oh my god, it’s really you you’re actually sending but sometimes for me, just because I’m used to communicating verbally, sometimes it’s easier and sometimes I think my message is clear. If I actually leave the voice message because they can hear how I’m intending To say what I’m saying. Sometimes I don’t love receiving voice messages personally because if I’m with my kids, I can’t always listen to it right? But I think it’s it can be a good way. Then you at least have intonation you have another layer. So I think that’s that’s a good point. Leah. Adding voice to the mix. I wouldn’t do every one a voice message but adding it to the mixed mix maybe with it the animal Geez.


Leah Schell  20:28  

Yeah. Don’t do the animal


Damona  20:30  

Jesus to hear the technology hasn’t caught up.


Leah Schell  20:33  

Especially not the owl. Don’t do that. Don’t do the owl.


Damona  20:36  

But yeah, I think a voice message short voice message can be very effective in building rapport, particularly before you’ve met. Because sometimes it’s like I just need to hear their voice and know their real person and really hear what they sound like to feel that connection. Look at you, Junior dating coach. I love it. Can we do one more before the break? Yeah. Of course,


Leah Schell  21:01  

um, this one. She says Hi, damona I love listening to your podcast. Thank you. I have a question. Do you think men and women who used to date can be friends,


Damona  21:12  

too? I think men and women who used to date can be friends. Yeah. I’m friends with pretty much all of my exes. That’s awesome. I mean, so I’m not in touch with someone like Facebook friends with but um, it’s really important to set up what the boundaries and the rules are of the relationship so that it’s clear you’re not going to whoops a daisy catch feelings and end up in a weird situation ship again. But absolutely, I think men and women can be friends and I have a ton of guy friends that are platonic and always have been. And I think I’m just the fact that used to date someone that doesn’t necessarily say You are still attracted to them. That just means that at some point in your life, you felt a connection and it’s very common. I mean, how many axes do all of us have? It’s very common for you to confuse that feeling of I like this person. I enjoy their company. I find them funny I find them to be intelligent. We like the same things whatever with I should date this person. Yeah, so to answer a broader question with a real specific answer,


Unknown Speaker  22:27  

yeah, I don’t


Leah Schell  22:29  

think it speaks to like the maturity of somebody who can be friends with their exes. I


Damona  22:36  

What, are you calling me old? No, no,


Leah Schell  22:39  

I’m calling myself image here just because I I don’t know the relationship though


Damona  22:45  



Leah Schell  22:46  

now. Okay. I definitely know that I’m 100% at fault in this situation. That’s why I’m willing to admit it or not like at fault, but I know that I was being immature. I was just like, Oh, never talked to me again and moving to California by like, you know,


Damona  22:59  

over time. Again, sort of,


Leah Schell  23:02  

but yeah, like, just like we’re not friends like 100% not friends. So like, but that was something that I just decided, um, and I think it was a really immature decision. So,


Damona  23:16  

but sometimes that’s what you need. Sometimes you need to close the door. Yeah. First completely close it, shut it lock it. Like most of my exes that I’m friends with now there was a period where I was like, please don’t talk to me, right? Yeah, where you have to get distance from it. And then the next time you see them, you’re like, Oh, I don’t feel anything anymore.


Leah Schell  23:35  

Right? Yeah, I totally can see that. But like in that situation. Did you leave the possibility open for them to be friends with you? in the future? in the future?


Damona  23:43  

Yeah, but I would say right now. Not a good time. Right.


Unknown Speaker  23:49  

Right. Yeah.


Damona  23:50  

Yeah. So I feel like in general, though, do you think men and women can can be used today can be friends? And yeah, absolutely.


Leah Schell  23:58  

Totally. Just don’t What I did


Damona  24:02  

if you learn nothing else from the show, no, I, we all look, we all have these experiences that teach us how to be better in relationships. If you have the missteps, then you wouldn’t have the the, the learning that you need rate continue to evolve and relationships. So that’s true. We are continuing to evolve and we are continuing this show after the break. I just want to thank the longtime listeners and supporters of dates and maids. And even though it’s holiday time, like I said, we will continue to make these episodes for you because I know your love life doesn’t stop just because the holidays are here. And if you’re starting to take stock of your year and make plans for 2020 about how you want to date differently, we should talk and that’s why I am doing a webinar on January 9. It is called why online dating doesn’t work for you. And I will be doing a presentation plus a live coaching and q&a. At the end so if you have a dating dilemma that you want to talk to me about live, this is your chance to live, live, live, live live, and you will get free coaching from me on your specific problem should you be brave enough to share it and join me? You don’t have to ask a question you can just come for the presentation and figure out why online dating doesn’t work for you. and sign up at the dating secret.com that’s th e dating secret.com and I will spill all of my dating secrets with you. The link will also be in the show notes and on our blog at dates and mates. com We have more dates and mates coming up. I want you to stick around for more questions from our listeners including how to have the DTR conversation. All that and so much more right after this. lovers, we’re back you asked I answered and there’s more dear damona Producer Leah, what else you have in the hopper?


Leah Schell  25:58  

Okay, this one is from an email. She says, I’ve been going out with a guy for a little over. I’ve been going out with a guy for a little over a month that I met through Bumble. When should I have the DTR conversation? And how should I do it?


Damona  26:16  

This is a big question, Leah, because it’s different for everybody. There is no set time that you need to like, Oh, it’s five o’clock on on January 1, and we haven’t had the DTR conversation and we have to do it now. That is a recipe for disaster. You have to feel out where you are in the relationship. Does it feel like you’re moving towards exclusivity? Are you seeing each other more than once a week? Are you having conversations about the future? Are you feeling like you don’t want to be swiping online, this happens a lot of times to my clients. They’ll get in the program. And then within I don’t know four Five weeks, they are dating someone that they want to be exclusive with. And then they think, wait, it happened so fast. Maybe I should go back and date more people. But like the idea now that I have a burden hand, and I really like this person, the idea of going back and swiping feels exhausting, and it feels like you can’t focus on the person in front of you. And it just feels if swiping Do you feels on, appealing, uninspiring because of this person that you’re with, and maybe this is the person that you should focus on. So when do you have the conversation, if those feelings are becoming more and more intense for you, and if you’re having more and more conversations about the future, then it’s worth just checking in and seeing how they’re feeling and it doesn’t have to be a whole thing like this is this is not a bank binding contract. This is not a marriage proposal. You don’t have to say like, I I feel that way. We are destined for marriage. And I want to know where we are. And let’s define the relationship. So I could track you on the timeline trajectory of my relationship future. That’s too much. You could just say, I am feeling like, I want to focus on just the two of us and just eating you. How do you feel about that? But here’s, here’s the hard thing. You have to be willing to accept whatever answer you get when you’re ready to do that. So if you’re not ready to accept whatever answer you get, without trying to control the outcome, then it’s too soon to have the conversation. If you feel like you could have that conversation, and if they say, only really like you, I’m not sure where this is going. But I like seeing you. I’m not ready to take my profile down. Then you have information that you have to catalog and say, Do I want to continue dating this person knowing that they’re not sure when I feel very, very short? Or do you say like, oh, man, Maybe I have been moving a little bit fast and I don’t really know this person that well? Or do you need to redefine how you are, how you are moving forward in this relationship. Or maybe you need to go online again and see, maybe if I date one more person, then I can determine if this is someone that I still think is special, but it’s information. It’s crucial information that will allow you to move forward or move out of the relationship. But you can’t have this conversation lightly. You can’t have this conversation when you’re not sure. So wait until you really have clarity for yourself. And then make it as painless as possible. Don’t Please don’t do the We need to talk. How many of you have had that conversation like we need to talk about where this is going dramatic? Right, we get into harsh robbing. Yeah. I hate that. I hate that. Like even my husband will be like, we need to Talk. It’s like something about the kids. Like, I don’t want an appointment, have a conversation. Let’s just talk. We need to talk. Just talk. Yeah. So don’t do that. Not that he does that that often. But just just begin the conversation at a time when you’re both comfortable and casual and you can speak openly. Don’t do it over over new the New Year’s party, like while the ball is dropping, and all of your friends around, do it somewhere when you can both be vulnerable, authentic, clear, and speak with clarity and openness. And it it’s a hard conversations a very hard conversation. You know, and I remember when I had been dating my husband like six weeks, and it’s funny because he had a birthday party, and then he invited me to the birthday party. But then I was like, I don’t know how I’m going to be introduced his birthday party. I was pretty sure that we weren’t dating anyone else. Uh huh. But we hadn’t had the conversation. So I showed up to the party and he was like, This is damona. And all of his friends were like, Oh, damona like it was clear that they had. But I still didn’t have a title. We hadn’t had the conversation. So then I asked him later, where where do you?


Where do you? Yeah, what is this? And he was like, Well, I’m not really sure. And then he like backpedaled. And I went, Okay, I get this, like, this is not my first rodeo. Okay. So I was like, Oh, it’s gotta be his idea. You know? Like, the guys that are listening. Y’all have to think it’s your idea. For the ladies, just just let it be their idea. You can’t You can’t push it, you can’t force it. You will not get the outcome that you want. So I just backed off. I was like, okay, that’s fine. You know, I’m really enjoying hell. Yeah, I’m enjoying this, but whatever. And I’m like a week later, he was like, so do you want to be my girlfriend? Oh, this is the funniest part. He was like, I was going to ask you before my party, but then like he kind of chickened out. Oh. And I’m like, wait, then why did you act when I asked you You acted like you weren’t really sure. Can he just needed it to be enlightened by him? Okay. Oh, yeah, like I needed to not emasculate him.


Unknown Speaker  32:24  

Worked out. Okay. And yeah. Do you have any other questions this week?


Leah Schell  32:27  

Yes. One more actually. Tell me. Okay, another one from Instagram. This person says How should I feel about my boyfriend having a pre planned two week trip to Mexico in January with an ex Oh, oh, wow. They are going to a wedding from someone in her family. He stressed that a she’s just a friend and a lot like a sister. He could tell I wasn’t happy but I told him that I don’t have a reason not to trust him. Since this is new. Did I do the right thing?


Damona  32:58  

Okay, let’s break this down. It’s two weeks. In Mexico, who gets two


Leah Schell  33:01  

weeks off in January anyway, couples vacation not that this is a couple of couples vacation, but like a huge vacation. Wow,


Damona  33:09  

that is a huge vacation. Um, but it’s for a wedding, okay for someone in her family, okay. I mean, there are definitely people that have a certain place in your life that you have dated in the past. We’re talking about this a little bit before the break, that there is not the like, if he’s telling you she’s like a sister, then he probably doesn’t have the desire to be with her again. And this sounds like this is a new relationship. This is our new boyfriend, she said. So she can express that she’s not happy about it. But ultimately, this is a test of her trust of him and of where the relationship can go. And you cannot build a relationship without complete trust. And this could be a test of The relationship. So there’s a saying, If you love someone, let them go. Or if you love something, let it go. And it comes back to you, then it’s meant to be, yeah. Yeah. And again, you can’t just like he’s got to think it’s his idea. You cannot squeeze the situation, too, so tightly that you you cause him to actually want to rebel against that. And if it’s so new as well, that’s your new boyfriend, then let them know you’re going to be chill because this is a long distance run. This is not a sprint. Yeah. And this will not be the last time if you stay in the relationship with this person. This will not be the last time that you question who he’s spending time with or where this if this woman is that good of a friend, where her role is in your relationship, so you have to give him enough space to be able to show that he’s trustworthy,


Leah Schell  35:01  

right? And I like that she was honest about her feeling so those resentments didn’t build up and they could have a conversation about it.


Damona  35:08  

Yeah, yeah, I mean she said she wasn’t happy but you know, you got to make yourself happy then. Why don’t you go on your own trip to Mexico don’t like Shadow them. That would be awkward. Oh, hi. I didn’t know you were going to be at the moon palace resort.


Unknown Speaker  35:25  

I just happened to stay here to


Damona  35:29  

vacation. No, don’t do that. But do something. No for real though. Do something that is going to make your soul flourish during the time when he’s gone. I know I said that kind of flowery. But do something that will fill you up whether it’s maybe it’s a maybe it’s a trip with your girlfriends or maybe it’s a going to the spa and having a massage day or self care day or doing meditation every day or yoga or working I don’t know, whatever you do read a book, whatever it is do it with intention. I’m doing this for the with the intention of keeping my mind occupied and my heart full while he is away. Because if you are calling him every day going, what are you doing? Who are you doing it? Have you seen her? You’re you’re just going to squash this again. So you’ve got to have your own stuff going on. So that he feels like you trust him. You’re giving him the space that he needs. But you’re also taking care of yourself. I mean, not what is sexier than someone who can take care of themselves. I’m hearing that more and more for my male clients and the listeners of this podcast. They want a woman who has her own stuff going on, has her own career, her own life, and isn’t reliant on a man. prior generations. That was that was a societal construct that we were stuck with it. We had to we had to be reliant on a man for our financial and emotional well being Now you don’t have to. So you can have this relationship. You can have your cake and you can eat it too. I am spent. We it’s a holiday season. And I will go back and recharge. Because like I said, we are not taking a break for this holiday season. I can’t believe this is Episode 289 of dates and mates. If you have a question that you want answered, and you’ve been too shy to share it with me, just know that I don’t fight. And if there’s a question that you’re having, just like you were listening to this episode probably heard something that resonated for you if you have a question, just know that you could be helping out thousands of other listeners by sharing your question with us, and we will make it anonymous. We will make it safe and secure for you to share your question. You can dm it to me on any social media platform at damona Hoffman or email me damona at damona Hoffman calm we also have a forum on our website, data mates com basically it’s so easy Easy to get in touch with me I just need you to reach out and take the first step I heard we got a review a new review yes we did Who’s it from?


Leah Schell  38:10  

It’s from sure door them


Damona  38:13  

to join me that’s what their that’s their name


Leah Schell  38:15  

dr them okay the door them what it what is your door them say just adore them said excellent dating guidance or advice is wise current and she is engaging and positive thank


Damona  38:26  

you thank you she door you I try to stay current y’all I’m reading all these headlines trying to stay up on the trends for you and yes, I try to keep it positive. There’s a lot of stress out there in the world and I want data mates to be a fun experience for you. Thanks for the five star review Joe door them if you want to shout out on future episode, leave us your five star review on the platform. You can leave us a four star review if you want but I’d really like a five I’ll still read it was four star but review on whatever platform is bringing This podcast to your ears right now and then make sure you’re subscribed to the show and that you’re sending the episodes that your friends need to hear to them. This is probably one of those episodes so go ahead and share it and you do those three subscribe, review and share dates and mates we will keep it free. like clockwork will be back again bright and early next Monday morning to ring in the new year with a masterclass episode on how to change the bad dating habits that aren’t working for you. And in the meantime, Registration is open now for my webinar coming in January on January 9. It’s called why dating apps aren’t working for you. And I will also be doing a live q&a and coaching as a part of that call. So if you want to be in on that it’s free to sign up at the dating secret.com Until next week, I want to wish you Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa and of course, happy dating


Surviving The Holidays While Single

A Few Dating Dangers For Singles To Avoid This Holiday Season

Navigating the holidays can be hard when your parents keep asking why you’re still single. Top it all off with dating app fatigue, and Millennials & Gen Zers are ditching dating apps more than ever. But mostly, holiday dating app fatigue comes around due in large part to awkward questions from relatives.

How many times have you heard something on the order of, “Why are you still single” or “when are you going to settle down?” Be prepared for all of the awkward questions because you’re going to get them. 

If you don’t want to talk about why you’re single during the holidays, share all the accomplishments that you want to share instead of focusing on the negative. If all else fails and they just keep asking, tell them some of your bad date stories.

Here are a few tips on handling awkward conversations with relatives:

1. Stay optimistic about dating apps.

Dating apps are the most powerful tool in your dating tool box. If you’re feeling down about dating apps just remember this:

Now more than ever daters are finding love online. But regardless of this shift, people do tend to get down on dating apps around the holidays. Often parents and relatives don’t understand that online dating is the norm now. The latest news may not have helped that…

2. Tell your parents the dating apps aren’t dangerous.

You may have seen in the news that the safety of some of the best dating apps has been called into question. A recent investigation proved that registered sex offenders are finding victims through free dating apps and websites such as Tinder, OkCupid, Plenty of Fish, and more. 

This is terrifying. But, it’s also an opportunity to examine 1) which dating apps you are using and 2) how we are filtering potential dates

On episode #287 Dates & Mates, Damona discussed this with Rene Lynch, editor of LA Affairs in the LA Times. They break down this controversy: 

  • If you’re concerned about your safety, certain dating apps automatically use background checks against the sex offender registry – like Match. These are typically paid subscription dating apps that have the resources to filter for dangerous situations.
  • Do some research on your own! Before you meet your date in person:
    • Schedule a pre-date phone call or video chat & make sure that everything checks out.
    • A quick search on all social media platforms can tell you all you need to know about your match.
    • If something feels off to you, follow your intuition.

3. Think about dedicating some extra time to dating.

Damona always encourages daters to be proactive in finding love. And since we’re all on holiday, let’s take advantage of all the free time! A good rule of thumb is to dedicate five hours a week or more to your dating process.

4. If you’re experiencing dating app fatigue, take a break!

We have all been there. Sometimes you get tired of the seemingly endless and monotonous game of swiping. But once you take a step back, you realize that the dating apps are more than just swiping at faces. 

If you’re in a dating rut, make sure you take some time to regroup. As Damona says, it’s better to take a break than to bring the wrong energy into dating.

5. Revisit making IRL connections.

While you’re taking a break from dating apps, make an effort to meet people in real life and be more conscious about the kind of person you are looking for. You can actively search in relevant spaces where you can find potential matches with common interests. 

6. Where’s your match hiding?

If you’re looking for someone that has a professional career, you might want to go downtown at happy hour and chat up the people that work in those office buildings. Or if you’re looking for someone who has a big heart, try attending a charity event and places with people who make philanthropy a part of their lifestyle.

Do you have a dating resolution for next year? Reach out to us on socials (@DamonaHoffman on all platforms). Happy dating!

Religion & Relationships



With the holidays in full swing, cross-cultural romances can get a little sticky. How do you incorporate your SO in your family’s traditions? There’s no right or wrong answer here, but we invited Evan Marc Katz, one of the foremost dating experts for women in the world, in studio with us to talk it out. Here’s the rundown:


Cardi B & Offset Break Up: Y’all Won

In case you missed it, Cardi B announced her split with Offset via instagram. While this is not surprising, Evan and Damona have some solid advice for Offset, who seems to be taking this hard.

Do you have the “skin hunger”?

No, the Zombie Apocalypse is not impending. We’re talking about the simple, human desire for physical contact called “skin hunger”. Did you know that cuddle parties exist just for the sole purpose of giving people non-sexual physical contact?


Are you dating a psychopath?

According to the latest research, it is estimated that about 1 in 100 people are psychopaths. Odds are, you’re not going to run into Norman Bates, but there are a few red flags you need to know. Damona and Evan break it down.



Obviously, Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra won best wedding of the year. At Dates & Mates, we LOVE how they incorporated each other in their family traditions and made their own rules for their wedding. Priyanka’s instagram coverage of the wedding was absolutely STUNNING, honey.

This week we celebrated cross-cultural romance with Evan Marc Katz to talk about our experiences in interfaith relationships and lead a panel on navigating cross-cultural romance. We were joined by Tiffany Renee, who shares her experiences dating in LA as a Muslim woman and Katy & Matt Snyder, celebrate their 15th wedding anniversary by sharing insights on how they’ve managed a PerJewvian relationship and raised their two children. We talked about A LOT:

  • Cross Cultural Dating
  • JDate and other faith based dating apps
  • When do you have the religion conversation?
  • Converting to your SO’s religion
  • Negotiating beliefs and raising kids with religion
  • First Holiday season with your SO


Submit your questions Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and hear our answers live on the show! Here’s what our listeners asked about this week:

  • Should you marry your SO to keep them in the country?



On average people gain 2-5 lbs over the holidays. You can fight to get it off in January or you can stop the holiday heaviness before it starts by beginning a program with Beach Body on demand. Just go to DatesandMates.com and click the Beach Body Banner to get started.