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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Why I Don't Want Kids

Lately it seems as though my Facebook timeline has been blowing up with posts about why having kids is great, and that if you don't have kids, your life must be missing something. Then couple of weeks ago, I watched an interview where Jennifer Aniston was asked why she hasn't done the deed and birthed some babies. I love her answer (and no, it's not that she's still pining after Brad. Have you seen those pics of Justin Theroux running in sweatpants? Girlfriend ain't pining over nothing):

"...I don't know. I don't have this sort of checklist of things that have to be done. And if they are not checked, then I've failed some part of my feminism or my being a woman or my value of my worth as a woman because I haven't, you know, birthed a child?" 

Preach! At this point in my life, I don't want kids. Like, at all. Definitely not in the near future, and probably not ever.

For years I've heard people tell me, "Oh, you'll change your mind," or "Having kids will change your life. It's so worth it." OMG, shut up. Stop trying to indoctrinate me into your little poopy-diaper, sticky hands everywhere, vomit on the sweatpants cult. I've never really felt the maternal pull of my womb, and I have several reasons why I don't want children.

1) I prefer life to be all about...

I have a 3-year old nephew and an 18-month old niece. When I travel 3,000 miles across the country to Virginia to visit my family after being gone for so, so long and try to tell them about my Hollywood adventures, guess who gets the spotlight? MY NIECE AND NEPHEW. Oh, Emily's walking now? So? I've been walking for years. Caleb said something adorably witty? And? I do that all day, e'ry day. Babies take away all the attention on what matters: ME. And since my babies would clearly be the most adorable of all the babies that ever existed, why would I even do that to myself?

2) Babies take a lot of work. 
I'm inherently lazy. Scarlett O'Hara is my spirit animal. When she said, "I'll worry about that tomorrow," I was like, "Preach, bitch!" The problem with kids is you can't worry about that tomorrow. You have to do it now. Feed them now. Change the poopy diaper now. Put down the wine and take them to the hospital NOW. Sometimes I just want to veg out in front of the TV and watch something that's viewer discretion advised. Sometimes I don't want to think. Kids make this infinitely harder to do, and why would I do something that's hard?

3) Kids cost money. 
And I ain't got none. Next.

4) I don't wanna grow up. I'm a Toys R Us Kid. 
I'm the oldest sibling in my family, but you wouldn't know it. While my younger brother and sister were marrying people they loved, having babies, and buying houses, I was all, "I'mma go to Hollywood and be a famous writer!" Babies force you to be responsible, and ugh, no, thank you. Maturity is for other people. Not me.

5) I just don't want them. Get off my back! 
I've never felt the desire to have children. Maybe one day I'll meet some guy and decide I would love nothing more than to be a mother. Maybe I'll die a spinster. I DON'T KNOW. Life is unpredictable. That's what makes it exciting! But whether you want no babies or 19 babies and counting, it's no one else's business but your own. As long as you're happy and content, who cares about what anyone else is doing with their baby-making machine?

Worry about yo'self!
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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Why Don't People Read?

tl;dr: Save yourself and everyone else aggravation and embarrassment by thoroughly reading something before asking questions or commenting. 

One of the most frustrating things in my world right now (yes, it's a #blessed world) is that people neglect to read. I'm not talking about reading novels or online news articles. Nope. I mean, people don't read an email, blog post or even a status update to its completion before jumping to conclusions or asking a series of dumb questions.

Some may say that there are no dumb questions, but they're wrong. Questions are dumb when you neglect to read the information that was sent to you or the information you're trying to contradict in a comment "flame war" on some obscure website or social media post.

The most recent example I can provide is an email conversation I had with an IT professional at work. First, I had to defend that I was actually experiencing an issue. Then, I had to assure this person three times (in an email conversation where they could easily scroll back to find the answer to their question) that my department number had not changed. This means that they ignored my response to their question ("Has your department number changed?") twice before finally reading it and assimilating that information into their Borg Collective brain.

OK, trolls. You're probably thinking, "So, what? You're on the same page now, right? What does it matter if the person 'missed' that detail."

First, you don't "miss" something that's in writing. You didn't read it. You skimmed by it while assuming that it's superfluous information. There's a difference. Second, it's a waste of people's time when one person doesn't read. Not only was my time wasted having to explain something repeatedly, it was a waste of the IT person's time having to ask multiple questions rather than taking a couple minutes to thoroughly read and comprehend the issue. 

Ever heard the expression, "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt"? The same applies to reading.

Reading makes everyone appear smarter. The writer doesn't have to repeat themselves. The reader doesn't look like a fool who skimmed or flat out didn't read. And, no ignorant conclusions are jumped to. So, why don't people read?

I don't know. It's a mystery to me. But, I have a few theories.

I'm "too busy" to read that.

You know the type. The self-important, self-made martyr using their overloaded calendar as an excuse to not be thorough. What they are really saying is, I'm using my schedule as an excuse to be lazy, ignorant and superior. Here's the solution: If you don't have the time to do it properly, wait until you do. If you can't wait, prioritize your other tasks or delegate. Problem solved.

It didn't interest me/couldn't keep my attention.

Chances are if you're commenting on something or responding to something you should have read, it's because you have to respond (i.e. work, school project, etc.) or you really want to assert an opinion on something (i.e. troll a comment section or social media post). Here's the rub. If you don't want to look like an idiot, you should probably force yourself to read it. Your inability to focus your attention on something is not an excuse for being ignorant.

I know what it says without having to read it.

Sweet Jeebus! A real life psychic! OMG. What are the winning Powerball numbers? Am I going to marry Benedict Cumberbatch? If you really believe that you know what something is going to say before reading it—and are confident enough to respond without making sure—I'm going to have to suggest that you check yourself into a looney bin somewhere, because you are crazypants. (There is no scientific proof that psychics are genuine.) Maybe you should read it, even if you just want to verify your psychic status. You'll either confirm that you are indeed Professor Xavier, or you'll realize that you're just crazy. Either way, you'll ensure that you don't say something stupid if/when you respond.

If you made it to the end of this post and read ever word, here's your gold star. Great job! You've earned it.

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Friday, September 5, 2014

What to do When You Have a Crush on Someone

The day started like any other day. I woke up, fed the cats, made a breakfast that took as little effort as possible, and then it hit me: I have a crush on someone. And not a celebrity this time. (Although, I still think we'll have beautiful babies together, Norman Reedus.) This time it's a person I know in real life.


I hate crushes. They're the worst. My crushes are generally completely one-sided. (I heard you say, "duh!" I heard it!) But maybe this time will be different. Maybe this time my crush will turn into a relationship. (Hey, I heard you just shake your head "no." I heard it!)  

I talked to Jennifer and together we came up with a bullet-proof plan to get everyone's crushes to notice them! Perhaps by employing these strategies, we can make the love life we've made up in our heads become a reality. 

1) Find your best pose. 

You want to make sure you always look your absolute most attractive around that special someone. Practice in front of a mirror. Or your coworkers. Or that homeless person on the corner. 

Once you find your pose, always be in it when your crush looks at you. DON'T MOVE. If you do, he or she may see you in a less flattering light. The horror!

2) Stalk their social media pages. 

OK, it's not really stalking, it's just extreme friendship. Like all of their Facebook pics from 5 years ago at 3:00 in the morning. Casually drop into conversation how that one tweet from 2012 changed your life. They'll probably think it's really sweet how you took the time to do that. And yes, it WILL take lots of time, but who needs sleep anyway? (Your crush does. Eight hours to be exact. You know because you watched them sleep. In the tree across from their apartment with binoculars. Don't worry. It's not stalking. It's EXTREME friendship.) 

3) Be as awkward as humanly possible.  
Stop talking in coherent sentences whenever they come around. (Remember: Gibberish is the language of love.) Ignore them when they talk to you. Laugh hysterically at everything they say then flee the room. In case you didn't know, awkward is cute. 

4) Find a reason to cry. 
Maybe your cat ignored you today or the Starbucks barista screwed up your order. You can blow anything out of proportion and use it to your advantage to induce a full-on sobfest. If you're crying, your crush will probably hug you. (Aaah! Provoked touching! Yay!) Plus, everyone loves to comfort a crier. That's just a fact. 

5) Over-share your life. 
Sharing is caring. Since you already know everything about your crush from the endless hours of stalking them on social media (and maybe elsewhere), make sure they know all about you too. Tell them about why all your past relationships didn't work. Got family drama? PERFECT! Fill him in on all the dirt.  Maybe your heart stopped once during surgery, and you saw the tunnel of light and your grandma told you to go back because it wasn't your time and that you still had to get married in a castle in England during the springtime, and can he help you with that? If you don't have any of these issues, make it up. I mean, you gotta talk about something, right? 

Use these tactics properly, and you're sure to get your man in no time. (If you like a woman, I suggest you just tell her or something. We don't put up with this manipulative bullshit.) 

I'll let you know how it goes on my end and when the wedding will be. (Probably springtime. In a castle. In England.) 

Do you have a crush on someone? Who is it? Tell us in the comments below!
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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

How I Got Over Being Bullied

Recently, I read an article about the difference between being rude, being mean and being bullied. It got me thinking about my own history with bullies. I was bullied pretty ruthlessly in middle school. It can take a while to get over it and move on. So, how did I accomplish that?

Two words: I didn't.

Or, is that three words? Two and a half? Anyway. My point is, I never really got over being bullied. The effects are still with me more than twenty years later. Being bullied shaped me into the person I am today, and I still have knee-jerk reactions to certain situations.

When I was in middle school, which is a trying time for many kids, my family moved from the West Coast to West Virginia. It was a culture shock. For one thing, the education system in West Virginia was far behind the schools out west. Contrary to popular opinion, ignorance is NOT bliss. Ignorance is hateful. People fear what they don't understand. And, when people fear something, they tend to attack it rather than try to understand it.

I came to West Virginia with my West Coast accent and my West Coast clothes and was utterly and completely different. They didn't understand me. And, I didn't understand them. I mean, I literally couldn't understand their thick West Virginia accents. On my first day, a kid asked me, "Eww aaaain from rounyear, arrya?" He had to repeat it a few times before I understood what he meant. It was very intimidating. This was the second time we'd moved, and I made friends easily before. So, I plastered on my biggest smile and did my best to be friendly to everyone I met.

The first week was blur. I think they didn't know what to do with me. I was different, and after the novelty wore off, I was labeled as "not one of them" and ostracized. After a while, I was able to make friends with one girl from my neighborhood. We rode the bus together and she was nice, but very, very shy. We were both "nerds," so we had that in common.

Over the next few years, I was ridiculed, had my belongings stolen right in front of teachers who did nothing to help, was shoved into lockers, tripped in the halls, harassed in the bathroom, and worst of all for a preteen girl, publicly humiliated when I started my first menstrual cycle at school. (As if that's not traumatic enough on its own. Right?)

People handle being bullied very differently. Talking with my friend, Josette, she mentioned that being bullied caused her to lash out at other people, hurting them before they could hurt her. Other people will recoil and withdraw, pretending that nothing is wrong or shutting out people who want to help. Many parents never know that their child is being bullied because fear or humiliation keeps the child from talking about it.

In my case, I became a people pleaser. I wanted so badly to be accepted, as all humans do. I wanted the torment to stop. No matter what the kids at school did to me, I just kept smiling and pretending that it didn't matter to me. I'd laugh at their jokes about me, and pretend to like the very people who made my life a nightmare. When the other kids finally stopped picking on me so much, we moved away again. Even though I was miserable almost every day in West Virginia, I was so scared that moving to a new location was going be the same nightmare all over again.

We moved from West Virginia to Virginia, where the amount of military bases makes newcomers a very normal occurrence. I was instantly accepted and had no issues with being an outsider. After a week in my new school, I realized how truly horrible my previous school had been. I compare it to having Stockholm Syndrome. You get used to the hatred and meanness and start to think that's normal ... that being treated with respect and kindness is something to be skeptical of.

You see, anytime my classmates in West Virginia were really nice to me, it was because they were planning some practical joke or they wanted something from me. That kind of damage lingers. I still have moments when I question people's motives if they are really nice to me.

Moving to Virginia really helped, but even though I was removed from the daily anxiety I experienced in West Virginia, it wasn't removed from me. I was constantly worried about saying or doing something that would make my new classmates turn on me. So, I did everything I could to fit in. "Be agreeable" was my new motto. And, it was a very long time before I started feeling comfortable expressing my own opinions again.

Flash forward to twenty years later. I'm a lot more confident in my own skin. I know who I am. I know what I like and what I don't like. And, I'm not afraid disagree with my friends. But, I still want to make everyone happy, and will sacrifice my own comfort to do it. Maybe that's just who I am and who I would have been without being bullied as a kid. When someone pitches a fit about something, I still do my best to compromise and accommodate them ... even if they are being completely irrational or inconsiderate of others.

The effects of being bullied are still there. They are still lurking in my subconscious, along with my insecurities and that weird recurring dream about not being able to fly even though I know that I can. [Enter your R. Kelly jokes here.]

All I can say is that you never really "get over" being bullied. It's something that sticks with you forever. But, you can own the effect it had on you and turn it into a life lesson. Being bullied has made me more open to compromise. I'm not so "my way or the highway" that I won't listen to the needs of others. On top of that, being bullied has made it much easier for me to recognize the bullies in everyday adult life and keep them at arm's length.

Were you bullied as a kid, or later in life? How did you get over it? How has it changed you?
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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Let's Talk About ALS

For the past two weeks, a new craze has been sweeping the nation. People are taking large buckets of ice water and dumping them on their heads. Why would they do such a thing? Are they too hot? Is the severe drought in California over, and we're celebrating in the most wasteful way we know how? 

No. Apparently people are dumping buckets of ice water over their head to promote awareness for ALS. 

I sure do know what a lot of people would look like in a wet t-shirt contest (Including my dad. Traumatizing.), but do you know what I don't know a lot about? ALS. Like, what does that even stand for? Awesome Lentil Soup? (Just kidding. Lentil soup is never awesome.)

I'm not here to criticize the challenge, so untwist those panties. It's raised over $15 million in donations for the ALS Association, and I think that's just swell. Besides, it's not like the stupid Facebook game where people post ridiculous phrases in the name of "promoting" breast cancer awareness. (News flash: It's not promoting any kind of awareness if people don't know what the f**k you're talking about.)

All I want to do is tell you what ALS actually is and what you're supporting. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say the majority of the people doing the ice bucket challenge couldn't tell me one thing about ALS. A lot of them don't even tell you how to donate or where to donate or any useful information at all. Except for the Foo Fighters. They did it right.

Since I'm not going to dump ice water on my head, and I'm too poor to donate, here's my contribution to the cause: Educating the masses. 

Here's the most basic, dumbed-down way I can think of how to explain it:

ALS stands for: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Try saying that three times fast. That should be the real challenge. Say amyotrophic lateral sclerosis three times fast and if you can't, donate $100 to the ALS Association. Everyone would have to donate. EVERYONE.)

It's also known as "Lou Gehrig's Disease" after the famed Yankees baseball player who contracted the disease and died from it just days before his 38th birthday in 1941.

What ALS does to the body: 
ALS affects the body's nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Basically, these cells start to degenerate over time and fail to send impulses to the muscles, resulting in loss of movement.The muscles start to atrophy from lack of use, and the spine starts to scar and harden in the areas where the nerve cells are located. Once those cells degenerate to the point of cellular death, the brain can no longer control muscle movement, and in the late stages of ALS, patients can become completely paralyzed.

Although people with ALS lose muscle control, they don't lose their cognitive abilities. Case in point: Stephen Hawking. That guy is super smart. Like, way smarter than the rest of us. People with ALS also usually retain their sense of sight, smell, touch, taste, and hearing. So don't talk down to them like they're dumb, or shout like they're deaf or something. You'll just look like an ass, and they'll probably make fun of you to their friends later. I know I would. 

ALS can affect anyone. ANYONE in any part of the world. And although the disease is most common among older adults between the ages of 60 and 69, younger people can contract it too. The guy credited with starting the ice bucket challenge is only 29 years old, and he was diagnosed two years ago in 2012. 

Scientists still don't know what causes ALS, and as of right now, there's no cure. It's imperative a cure is found soon since most people don't live more than five years after being diagnosed. 

I think it's wonderful when people want to bring knowledge of little-known situations to those of us living in our own self-absorbed bubble. A week ago, I didn't really think about ALS. Now, I can't go two minutes without someone posting their own ice bucket challenge video, reminding me that there are people who live with this degenerative disease every day. I hope the money that's being raised finds a cure real soon for those living with ALS now and for those who will be diagnosed in the future. 

I also hope that if you're participating in the challenge, you're educating yourself about ALS. Otherwise, you're just jumping on a bandwagon for the thrill of getting Facebook likes and attention, and well, that's just shitty. 

For more information about ALS, you can visit the ALS Association website and even donate without dumping water on your head. And if you DO do the challenge (ha! doo doo!), maybe put some helpful information in your video to help spread the word. At the very least, be grateful that you're healthy and that your nerve cells are firing well enough to control the muscles in your arms to lift that bucket over your head. 

It's just a thought.

What do you think about the ice bucket challenge? Have you done it? 
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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Coping With Grief and Depression

When Robin Williams died the world got a little darker. The angry, combative, one-track minds on the interwebs are quick to remind us that the world is full of "more important" matters. Darker subjects like war, social injustice and political sagas should take precedence over a celebrity death.

How stupid of me! I wasn't aware that humans are only allowed to feel one emotion at a time or think about one topic at a time. My apologies for breaking the law of social commentary and focusing on something important while another important event is happening. (If you didn't catch it, that was sarcasm.)

There is one emotion that is common to all the subjects the interwebs dictate we should be discussing right now: grief. War, social injustice, political turmoil, a second Kimye baby. All these things are cause for immense anguish and grief, and coping with that grief can be overwhelming for some.

In Robin Williams' case, and so many others who are weighed down by depression, sometimes it feels like there is no way out. A while ago, Delayna wrote about her battle with depression and suicide. She is 100 percent right. Depression lies. When you're fighting your own inner demons, your mind plays tricks on you. But, you have the power to fight back.

Surround yourself with good vibes.

Make sure the people in your world are positive and supportive. We've written pretty extensively about ejecting negative influences from your world, and we mean it. Life is hard enough without other people adding to your problems.

You also need to challenge that voice in your head. When I screw up, I'm quick to call myself names. I'm so stupid. I'm such a failure. I'll never be good enough. Bump that! When those thoughts pop up, as they frequently do, tell that voice to shut up. It's your voice in your head, so change it. Instead of focusing on the negative, focus on what you're doing right or the lesson you learned.

Push yourself to get out there.

When you're depressed or grief-stricken, the last thing you probably want to do is get out and be social. Your bed or couch can feel like the safest and most comfortable spot to be. Though a little alone time can help some cope with loss, it's important to get out there and talk to people. When you're alone, it's easy to think that your problems are the only ones that exist. If you don't feel like talking, that's fine. But, getting together with friends or family members will help remind you that the world is full of people with complex lives and problems of their own. Getting out regularly may help you keep your own problems in perspective. On top of that, if you've been getting out of house regularly, when you're ready to talk about your problems, the conversation will feel more organic and less contrived.

Make healthy choices.

To quote "Legally Blonde" (sorry I'm not sorry), "Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands. They just don't." This is the gospel according to Elle Woods. Praise to you, St. Elle Woods. Don't knock this sacred advice. Living a healthy lifestyle is proven to help with grief and depression. Set aside time to exercise at least three times a week. Take a walk when you're feeling down. And, try to eat as healthy as possible. You'll be amazed what these changes can do for your outlook and self-esteem.

Ask for help.

Asking for help is never—I repeat—NEVER a sign of weakness or something to be ashamed of. We all need help sometimes. Even the most annoyingly, picture-perfect people need help. Those "have it all together" types may appear to lead a "#blessed" life, but in reality, they are just better at hiding their doubts and insecurities.

So, when your grief and depression is so overwhelming that you just don't know what do to, tell someone. They won't think you're weak. (And if they do, they're an asshole.) Anyone with a heart will think you're brave for bearing your soul and taking steps to get the help you need. People who do this deserve a medal.

I was scared to ask for help when I needed it. I thought it meant I was admitting defeat. I was an idiot. (But I learned my lesson, and I know better now. See how I just changed that negative voice?)

Be smarter than I was. Be braver than I was. Ask for help when you need it.

If you or someone you know is in a crisis and needs help now, call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or go to

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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Go Fund Yourself

It seems that lately my Twitter and Facebook feeds have been blowing up with people asking for money. Independent movies need backing! Medical bills need to be paid! Shoes need to be bought! (I made that last one up, but I'm sure it exists somewhere.)

When people are bold enough to ask complete strangers to give up their hard-earned dolla dolla bills, I always check out the link. Not to donate money, silly! I'm way too poor for that. Just to see what these people are asking money for and to judge whether or not it's worthy. One link was from a person I've followed on Twitter for a while. She broke her neck and found out she has a tumor on her spine. So scary! If I had money, I would totally donate to help her out.

Soon after I saw that GoFundMe, another Twitterer started tweeting about their GoFundMe. This person needed money because they were having financial difficulties due to a medical reason too. As I read through the whole "woe is me" spiel, something to me. My lie-y sense started buzzing. (That's like spidey sense, only -- you get it.) I started inspecting things a little more closely. The person said they had lost their writing gig on a TV show due to their illness, but a quick IMDB search showed no writing credits. The resume they posted on IMDB listed an address that doesn't exist, and said they were represented by a person who, after a Google search, turned out to be fictional character. Hmmm...

The person who created the GoFundMe page had a Facebook page, but their only posts were about the person they created the GoFundMe page for. Also, one of the two pictures was stolen. (And who only has two photos?!) These inconsistencies led me to believe this Twitter person was not to be trusted, and their claims of needing money for their illness was a crock of bull. I unfollowed them.

Look, I get you need money. We all do. But don't lie about why. Be honest! And if you're going to give money to someone asking for it, please do your research! I know you want to give people the benefit of the doubt, but not everyone is as awesome as you. There are horrible people who like to take advantage of your generous, unquestioning nature. 

To show you an example of an honest GoFundMe page, I made my own! You can find it here, complete with rewards and everything! If you're not like me and won't click on the link, here's what it says: 

Hi there. Are you looking to fund a noble cause to feel better about yourself? Well, then you've come to the wrong place because this is not it. 

This is a place to make me feel better about MYSELF. Me. Not you. Get you right out of your head and replace it with me.

I need money, y'all. I'm going through a real hard time right now. I'm suffering from a condition called, "not having everything I want." It's really, really sad that in this day and age, a woman can't have every material thing she desires. What's a girl to do? Find a pathetic, gullible man to pay for everything? Get a second job?

Get real! Those things take work! Something I'm not willing to do which is obviously why I created this page! 

I want to live a more luxurious life. One that includes trips to Whole Foods in a brand new Hyundai Sonata. I want to travel to exotic places like the other side of town and Europe. I should be eatin' acai bowls e'ry day, y'all. E'ry. Day. 

Your money will give me what I really want in life: Money. 

Your generosity is appreciated, but mostly expected. You're welcome. 
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Friday, August 1, 2014

Stop Asking for "Pics"

Most girls raised on Disney movies and rom-coms grew up imagining a handsome, prince-like guy who would treat her like a princess (or at least an equal) and sweep her off her feet for the long-term commitment of her choice. *sigh* It's a lovely dream. But, nowadays, the story goes a little different.

Boy meets girl, generally over some seedy social media platform like Twitter, Tumblr or Tinder. Boy and girl share an exciting, albeit brief, series of messages before the relationship gets serious. And by serious, I mean that the boy asks the girl to "send a pic."

Ah, yes. The mark of true intimacy. Sending some random stranger a picture of you. Sure, it starts off innocent enough: clothed pictures at Starbucks or while you're out with friends, featuring nothing but the best angles of your cleavage and sad kitten eyes, of course. But, after several innocent pictures are sent and their corresponding "ur so hot" compliments are received, things get a little weird.

That's when the request for nude "pics" comes into play. I don't care how much you like someone, this always feels cheap and degrading. (Hey, maybe feeling objectified is your thing. Maybe being a puppet for someone else is what you're into. If it is, go for it!) Don't get me wrong, sending pictures to your committed significant other is different. You know them. You've been on dates with them. Maybe you've even had the sexy time with them. I'm talking about the pic request from that guy on the Internet who you've never physically met before. (Ew.)

Maybe I lack the wrinkle in my brain that females like Miley Cyrus have. You know, the one where they trick themselves into thinking that nudity equates to empowerment. I guess my brain is too full of the wrinkles that tell me to better my mind, body and soul and forget about using flesh to get attention, validation and acceptance. I guess I learned a long time ago that there is much more to me than my lovely lady lumps.

With all those "Miley" types of females out there, it's easy to see why guys have the impression that it's acceptable to ask for naked pics after a few interactions. They see girls posting half-naked pictures all the time. Guys probably think that if they ask nicely, women will gladly fork over one of the many nudes they undoubtedly have in their camera roll. (You know, the ones from all those naked tickle parties we have. Ugh.)

"Hey! There's no harm in asking." - Dudes everywhere.

Yes. Yes, there is. Picture this, dudes. You're chatting up some girl about sexy stuff. You're exchanging intimate details about things you like, don't like, dream about, etc. It's getting hot. Then ... BOOM! She asks you to cough up details about that time you fantasized about your cute cousin or putting peanut butter on your junk and getting freaky with Fido (because, everyone has that one gross fantasy that they'd never tell anyone about). Instant icky feeling. That's forced intimacy. That's what it feels like when you ask a girl for a nude picture when you don't even know her and have no physical relationship with her.

Aside from that disgusting, forced-intimacy feeling, when a guy steps over the line and asks a lady for a pic, he makes her feel small and objectified. Like her only worth to him is dependent on his assessment of her appearance. Like the time you spent getting to know her was just a ruse.

Let me help you here, guys. Women want to feel adored. We want people, not just our romantic interest, to admire us for all of our features combined, not just our physical ones. We want to know that you think we are not only pretty, but also smart, funny, talented, strong, graceful, etc.

Why did he have to ask for a pic? WHY?
And, it goes both ways. We want a guy that we can admire for all of those reasons too. So, when you ask for a pic, you aren't giving us much to admire. For most ladies, asking for a pic is the erectile dysfunction of electronic communication. Bye-bye, lady boner. All that chemistry we just felt for you just got hit with a fire hose. 

If you're that hard up to look at naked people, turn that "SafeSearch" off and Google away.

So, just stop asking for pics. OK? It makes you look desperate. And, no one likes desperate. When a woman wants you to see her naked, trust me, you won't have to ask.
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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Suggestions for Introverts in Social Situations

This past Saturday, Jennifer and I descended on San Diego, California to take part in the ultimate fangirl experience: Comic-Con. It was amazing and wonderful and sweaty. (So much sweat was sweated.) I'm sure we will discuss its epicness for years to come.

But initially, I was worried it wouldn't be epic. I worried that I would allow my introverted tendencies to ruin the whole experience. A massive mob of annoying people? Waiting in long lines? No alone time for hours on end? This is basically my worst nightmare. (This and floating around in space like in the movie "Gravity." Funk that.) Not only that, Jennifer was staying with me in L.A. which meant even less alone time.

All socializing and no solitary confinement make Delayna a biiiiiitch.

Not wanting to ruin a friendship of nearly 15 years because I'm anti-social, I took steps to ensure I wouldn't lose my shit during the weekend of awesome.

Be honest.
This is something I've started to employ more and more so people don't think I hate them. I don't hate people. I just hate being around them for long periods of time. It's exhausting. Thankfully Jennifer is also an introvert and totally gets it.

But maybe you don't have cool friends like I do. Maybe your friends are all, "Um, why would you rather sit at home eating pizza and binge-watching 'Call the Midwife' when you could be going to da club with us?" 

That's when you gotta break it down for people: "I don't like 'da club.' I will spend every minute beforehand wishing for cramps or food poisoning or a car accident just so I can have a viable excuse not to come. In the event none of those things occur, I will stress out trying to think of a somewhat believable lie to get out of it. If I fail to do so and somehow end up at 'da club,' I will spend the entire 45 minutes I'm there looking at my phone while every molecule of my body screams, 'GET OUT OF HERE.' I equate 'da club' with medieval torture." 

Hopefully your friends understand and only invite you to low-key, low-maintenance things like brunch or the movies. (Although for me, going to the movies is pretty tortuous. Let's just do brunch.) 

Mentally prepare yourself and embrace the chaos. 
If you're extremely introverted like myself, chances are you have to mentally prepare for even the smallest of outings. Like getting the mail. Big outings, like going to a Hollywood Bowl event, aren't even on your radar because attempting such a feat is laughable.

But say you're going to Comic-Con or on vacation with a bunch of people. Mentally preparing is essential for ensuring a good time is had. Not just by you, but everyone around you. Make sure to get copious amounts of alone time beforehand if you can so you're a ray of sunshine during the event. 

Accept the fact there are going to be people in your space and that you'll have to talk to them. Staying in the moment really helps. (That means don't fantasize about your couch or think about the "Doctor Who" marathon happening on BBC America.) Find something about the moment you enjoy, and be grateful for the small miracles. A little gratitude goes a long way. (For everything in life. Remember that.) Jennifer and I had so many small, kismet moments happen for us that pushing through the large, never-ending crowds, and being hot and sweaty didn't seem like such a big deal. 

Have a post-socializing plan. 
You did it! You made it through a social event! Time to employ your post-socializing plan. Cue up your favorite show on TV, order the pizza, and get comfy on the couch. Let people know you will not be available during your "OMG, I had to be around people, and now I get to be all alone. Hooray!" time. Remembering that you'll be rewarded with time by yourself will help you get through the socializing bullshit that people think is important for being a well-rounded individual. Embrace this moment. You deserve it.

SpongeBob knows what's up.

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

How to Rock Being Single

Let me just brag about the one thing I'm good at. I'm an expert at being single. Solo. All alone. Plus zero. Captain of the couch. Ruler of the remote. Poops with the bathroom door open. That weird girl and her dog. So, when it comes to dishing out advice about being single, I'm an authority. Ya dig?

My last relationship was in December 2010. In 2009, I had just emerged from the big "D" and I don't mean Dallas or that other "D" the Internet loves to talk about. I dated a guy for six months who managed to screw me up worse than my marriage. (Some people have a gift.) So, yeah. It took a while to even think about dating after that. Not that I wasn't tempted by the random hottie (or in my case, the random awkward nerd). But, I resisted. I stayed single for many reasons.

And, you know what? It's been franking awesome!

Being single is the absolute best way to come face to face with yourself. Your flaws. Your fears. But, best of all, your strengths. If you get the chance, I highly recommend rocking the single life for a solid year. And, here's why.

You'll figure out who you are.

People get lost in a relationship. You get so caught up in the "we" that you forget about the "me." That's great when both sides of the "we" support each other. Couples tend to have shared interests, but sometimes it's just a compromise for one person. Maybe you love to party, but your sweetie is a homebody. Or, you love Nascar, but your sugarpie would rather have a root canal. Being single is a great time to find out what makes you tick when you aren't supporting someone else. What do you enjoy?

Rock It Goal: Make of list of things you've been meaning to do. Now that you have the time, focus on getting them done. You won't be thinking about being alone, and you'll be happy you're spending more time on a hobby or interest you've been neglecting.

You'll figure out what you want/don't want. 

Have you ever seen "Runaway Bride"? I know. I'm ashamed to say that I've watched it multiple times. Anyway, Julia Robert's character runs away from the alter numerous times because she's always trying to wrap her life around a man's and never figures out what she wants from a relationship. Being single is the perfect time to figure out what you want in a relationship. What did you like about your last one? What didn't you like? What do you expect from a significant other? Now is the time to really analyze what you want without someone else influencing your decision.

Rock It Goal: Make a list of all the things you want from a relationship. Sometimes it helps to think of what you don't want first and go from there. Then—brace yourselffocus on fulfilling your own needs. Don't be dependent on having someone around to do things for you. If you want your partner to be handy around the house, learn how to fix some things on your own. If you don't know how to boil water, take a cooking class. You won't believe how a little independence will boost your self-confidence and make you realize that relationships don't complete you, they enhance you.

You'll get over it. 

Don't date until you stop seeing red. You may think you're over it, but one text or email from that person can send you on a frothing, cuss-filled rampage. It's not cool to burden someone else with your baggage. You have to unpack that dirty laundry before you can take a romantic trip with someone else. (How's that for an analogy only Dr. Phil could love?)

Rock It Goal: Get therapy. Learn to let it go. Forgive the other person, and forgive yourself. This is your chance to exorcise your dating demons. Don't cheat yourself out of the time you need to really move on.

You'll make new, different memories.

Fill the void with substance, not sex. It's tempting to hop from bed to bed seeking someone to fill the empty spot left by the one before. But, that will just make you feel even worse. Most people claim to be in control and that they're "just having a good time." However, all that meaningless sex usually ends up making people feel even more lonely and dirty. (And, not dirty in a good way.) As time goes on, you'll realize the only memories you're making are filled with all the wrong people.

Rock It Goal: Try new things that don't involve romance! Take a trip with a friend. Do something outside of your comfort zone. Spend more time with your family. Challenge yourself at work. Forget about finding someone new. Focus on finding you!

You'll have fun!

Even if you're not like me, happy as a one-woman wolf pack, don't spend you time focusing on finding the next plus one. Yeah, you're single. But, trust me, it is going to be OK. You will survive. You do NOT need someone else to be happy. You really don't. And, the more you focus on what you don't have, the more miserable you'll be. You know what grandma always used to say, "It will happen when you least expect it."

Rock It Goal: Just follow Rihanna's advice and "Live ya life ... HeyAyAyAyAyAyyyy!"

Got any single tips? Leave 'em below!
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