Dating as a Plus Size Princess can be… interesting! Here I’ve chronicled all of my dating adventures here from online dating as a big girl, to the “BBW” club scene in NYC. Hopefully reading my stories will remind us that it is possible to find love at any size.

“You’ll Find Someone When You Stop Looking” Is Terrible Advice

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When I was single, I was obsessed with getting dating advice from my married friends. I figured their success with coupledom could teach me a thing or two. Now that I’m straddling the single-married line, I see the problem with that point of view: Once you find someone, it’s easy to forget how hard it can be out there.

Advice is often dispensed with a certain forgetfulness. So, before my memory of being single fades, I’m gonna tell it like it really is. The most offensive thing that married people say is: “You’ll find someone when you stop looking.”

This statement is ridiculous. In what other area of life do we apply this kind of logic? Do we find a job when we stop applying? Or a pair of shoes when we stop shopping? If we want to find a loving relationship, how is shutting down the search a wise move?

I’ll admit, before I met my boyfriend, I would “stop looking” a few times a year. I would delete all my online dating profiles, spend nights at the gym, and go to dinner with friends. I would walk around the city wearing big sunglasses and headphones. Unsurprisingly, I wouldn’t meet anyone new. Of course, this was not what I wanted, and I wasn’t doing myself any favors by following this advice.

When people say love will happen when you’re not looking, what they really mean is to relax. One of my worst dating mistakes was being too ready when I was out. I was always looking for that rom-com connection, that instant attraction that would magically turn into love by the end of a song on the dance floor. Most of the time, I probably just ended up looking kind of desperate.

I met my boyfriend at work when I was going through a breakup. So, technically, I wasn’t “on the hunt” at the time our paths crossed. In fact, I didn’t even think of him as a prospect because I was nursing a heartache.

Because he was a coworker, I was super relaxed around him. I wasn’t CeCe the Single Girl, I was just me. And, by the time I decided to flirt with him, I found out he was already attracted to me.

When my married friends weren’t instructing me to stop looking, they were asking if I was making myself available enough. Of course, this piece of advice made me second-guess my not-looking strategy. So, I’d reactivate my dating profile, skip the gym in favor of happy hour, and confidently strut around the city wearing an approachable smile.

When it came to making myself available, my friends weren’t entirely wrong. I did actually meet a few men that way. There was the guy I met in a coffee shop who took my card but never called. And, one guy I dated for a hot minute before he suddenly went MIA. The difficulty of opening yourself is that you face rejection again and again.

Part of my problem was my inclination to reject before I could be rejected. But, when I began to embrace vulnerability, I was more available than ever. Allowing myself to be available without giving up my amazing independence was key. And, that willingness helped to secure my current relationship.

Figuring out how to make my married friends’ advice work for me wasn’t easy, but it can be done. You can be both not looking AND available.

Wedded friends like to tell you to enjoy the single life while smiling adoringly into each other’s eyes. And, it’s time to call BS on this.

Here’s how this advice usually happened to me: I’d share one of my single-girl horror stories, and they’d promise me I actually had it really good. The “till death do us part” bit they’d signed off on? Well, it was just terrible.

But, they couldn’t fool me. I was sure they went home to their partner after their conversation with me and sighed with relief that their single days were a thing of the past.

I get that marriage isn’t rosy all the time, and I believe that being single can be amazing. I’m the first to admit that I wasn’t prepared for the hard work of a relationship when I finally found myself in one. But, focusing on the challenges only tells part of the story.

As they say, hindsight is 20/20. I suppose it’s easy for married folks to look back and see how their dating woes led them to their spouse eventually, and then wrap it all up into little bumper sticker-like advice. But, for those who are trying not to be discouraged by dating, it’s helpful to be allowed to be irritated and frustrated at times. It’s also helpful to know that the advice of married people isn’t the Holy Grail.

So, what cliché dating tips do you get that drive you nuts?

Read more of my articles for Refinery29 here

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Couples Yoga! #PSPfit

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Mr. Man told me to be ready at 4:30 for my Valentine’s Day surprise. Just as I was putting the finishing touches on my outfit (thanks to everyone who helped me choose!) he called me and said “whatever you’re wearing take it off, pack it in a bag for later and put on some workout clothes.”

An hour and a subway ride later, he walked me into a yoga studio with roses and candles everywhere… my Valentine’s Day surprise was a couples yoga class!

Let me start by saying that Mr. Man is not the “yoga type” at all. I’ve suggested that he come to a yoga class with me and he wasn’t completely thrilled with the idea. I actually didn’t even know couples yoga was a thing, but I guess he’d been researching it on the low *cheesy grin*

Doing a Yoga practice with my honey was a really cool experience, using him for balance and deeper stretches made the session really impactful. I was able to get into certain poses more easily because he was there with me. Its definitely something I’d do again.

Something I shared with the #PSPfit bootcamp babes is that even though our fitness journey begins and ends with us, there are times when the people we’re in relationships with need to be involved with what we’re doing. Maybe its asking a friend to go walking instead of going to Happy Hour, asking a spouse to find room in the budget for our gym membership or asking coworkers to order you a fruit tray instead of a birthday cake. Sometimes we need to tell the people in our lives what we need from them to help us stay on our path… it can be awkward to ask, but the people who truly love us will always be happy to help us do/be better.

In my case, I was finding that Mr. Man is super supportive and always behind me as I go deeper into my #PSPfit lifestyle, but every once in a while I need him next to me. The fact that he chose V-Day to show his solidarity to my healthy curves journey was just… everything.

At the end of this weeks vlog, you’ll see the Valentine’s Day dress I chose and my giddy face at our couples yoga session… Subscribe to my YouTube channel here

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How to Have an Awesome Valentines Day When You’re Single

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It was so annoying when I was single and my friends were in relationships. Even if I didn’t notice the difference in our relationship status the rest of the year, on February 14th, there was no escaping the fact that they had a bae and I did not. The weekends away, the roses, the awesome dates… and I was just at home like

Especially with Valentines Day falling on a weekend this year, instead of one day of “have fun, everyone but me!” it can can feel like an entire weekend of “womp womp!” for single girls, but it doesn’t have to be that way. I’m all about celebrating love, period (family, friends, self) so here’s a weekend itinerary for an awesome Single Girls Valentines Day:

How to Have an Awesome Valentines Day When You're Single

Friday

Manicures! I know a lot of couples do the massage thing for V-Day, so I’d skip that but I think nail salons are pretty much a date-free zone during V-day weekend. Go and get a fun design, or if you don’t want to shell out the $$ for professional nail art, order some nail wraps in a fun design here and do it yourself!

Movies! There are a few movies coming out on Friday including “The Last 5 Years” based on one of my favorite musicals and certain movie might be *ahem* all shades of fun to see. If none of the new releases sound good, fire up nexflix; some of my favorite romantic movies are Baz Luhrman’s Romeo & Juliet, Dirty Dancing, Love & Basketball and The Notebook, obvi.

Saturday

Morning Yoga! I don’t think any Valentine’s Day dates will start before 12pm, so a morning yoga class should be a great way to avoid couples and give a little love and attention to your body #PSPfit! I’ll be inviting my girlfriends to take yoga with me before I start getting ready for my night with Mr. Man.

Make a Yummy Meal! Restaurants are going to be nuts, so I’d say either grab some chipotle and call it a day or maybe try to cook one of the many pinterest recipes you’ve pinned, but haven’t actually made yet.

Wine & Chocolate: I love pairing wine with chocolate, its so decadent and fun. You can do this based on your budget; a cheap $12 bottle of red wine and dove chocolate from the drugstore, or you can go for a more expensive bottle and Godiva, do what works for you!

side note: I’d say wine & chocolate is a good idea for a group of girlfriends, instead of a solo thing. I don’t know about you, but being alone with a bottle of wine and a box of candy could mean a slippery slope from cute to catastrophe! lol

Sunday

Brunch!!! Brunch is a great way for girlfriends to get together and dish about V-Day dates (or lack-thereof) over mimosas. Brunch is my favorite meal, so I’ve actually asked Mr. Man to come to brunch with my girlfriends this Sunday as part of our V-Day weekend plans. I’ve always done something with my girls for V-day and I don’t want to break that tradition.

What would you add to the list?

Whatever we do this weekend, the most important person to show love to is ourselves. Once we have a great relationship with ourselves, everything else is a breeze!

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Date Night: Sam Smith Concert | Vlog #15

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Last week, Mr. Man and I went to see Sam Smith at Madison Square Garden. The concert was amazing (footage below). Something Sam Smith said during the concert was that just 18 months ago he played a show in New York… at the Mercury Lounge. For those who don’t live in NYC, the Mercury Lounge holds 250 people and Madison Square Garden holds over 18,000 people.

Yeah. Crazy, right?!

If you have a goal, a vision or a dream even if it seems weird or no one understands it, I encourage you not to let go of it. Do the little things you can to affirm your dreams and eventually the path will open up.

Anyway, here’s this week’s vlog. You can hear a snippet of the concert and tag along on our date night a bit as well as see the other highlights of my week– hope you like it! xx

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What Happened When I Used A Full-Body Pic On A Dating Site

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It took months for me to finally upload a full-body photo to my online-dating profile. Because I’m plus-sized, I figured that a head-to-toe picture would prevent men from messaging me; I assumed cute, up-close selfies would work in my favor — but, boy, did I misjudge that one.

I had heard people say I have a pretty face (the classic “big girl” compliment), so in the beginning, my dating profile pictures highlighted my face — and cut off my body. I usually made sure to include my chest, since, well, that was another area that usually got attention. You know the photo I’m talking about: the selfie taken from a perfect, slightly raised, double-chin-hiding angle — cropped just below the chest.

Putting those assets proudly out there felt like I was presenting the best version of myself — not unlike the way we put our best foot forward when interviewing for a job, right? Could what I was doing really be considered lying if my (innocent) goal was to give a strong first impression?

At first, this approach seemed fine. Many guys messaged me, and while we were flirting I’d always send over a head-to-toe photo of me in a cute outfit — so I wouldn’t shock them when we met in person. That’s when things would get awkward. Some guys would stop texting me; the others made it obvious that they only wanted to hook up. I’d been chatting with one guy regularly, but after I sent the full-body photo, he went from calling me every night (to ask how my day was) to sending messages at 1 a.m. (to ask whether I was dominant in bed).

Related: Is Dating As A Plus-Size Princess A Blessing Or A Curse?

What Happened When I Used A Full-Body Pic On A Dating Site

I was frustrated beyond belief. It became exhausting to sense chemistry with someone and then have to wonder if everything would change once he saw my body. It almost made me want to stop dating online altogether. But, that was before I stopped to consider: Was I doing this right?

To find out, I decided to re-do my profile. I was still eager to present my best self, but this time with honesty and integrity. So, I added five full-body photos to my dating profile, and the results were somewhat surprising: read more..

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Why Meeting The Parents Terrified Me

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Last fall, I walked into my new apartment carrying a pizza, being careful not to trip over the array of boxes. Straight ahead, I caught sight of something that made my heart skip a beat: My dad and my Robert, putting together my furniture. I stood in the doorway, frozen for a few minutes as I let it sink in: Woah, am I in, like… a relationship?

Although I’d been on the dating scene a while and had been monogamous in the past, this was the first time I’d introduced a significant other to my parents. And, it was a really big deal.

Related: What Does Your Boyfriend Look Like?

A few years ago, a guy I was seeing suggested we take a trip out west — where my family was. I brusquely blurted, “Why would we do that?” Although it wasn’t my intention to be rude, I realized I’d hurt his feelings. He thought going home to see my folks would be fun — something that would bring us closer — whereas I just felt like our relationship wasn’t ready for that gigantic step. Suddenly, a sweet suggestion turned into an argument. read more..

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