Here’s the latest of my occasional interview blogs–your chance to hear from someone, other than me, who’s in the “dating trenches” in one way or another. Without further ado, I give you Tinamarie Bernard, who writes about modern love (cue David Bowie) for examiner.com.
In her own words: Tinamarie is a top-rated writer of sex, love and relationships. From celebrity relationships, sacred and eco-sexuality, erotica and feminism, to dating and mating advice for couples who want to deepen intimacy, Tinamarie covers what today’s Modern Lovers want to know about. You can send her emails, good vibes and inquiries about relationship book reviews to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Olive Juice: How did you become a dating expert?
Tinamarie: Does one ever become a dating expert?! I think my strengths lie in understanding how important INTIMACY is to the human experience. We date for one main purpose – to find a partner. Humans are wired for companionship, and yet for many of us, we aren’t really sure how to find someone suitable for long term relationships. Some people jump on board the first sailworthy ship that crosses into their harbors (like I did in my first marriage) and some keep waiting and waiting for the perfect dreamboat. Others seem to know early on how to choose, and sail away towards the blue yonder.
Excuse my corny puns! My point is that learning about authentic and conscious love requires work and inner reflection. What kind of lover do you want is the companion question to the more important piece: what kind of lover will you be?
This is what I try to explore in my writings at Examiner.com and other places. How can we approach love and relationships from a higher self, one that merges the sensual and the soulful with the sexual beings that we are.
Olive Juice: What do you think about the idea behind Greenlight Card–that single people should get out there and flirt–and do what they can to avoid missing out on an opportunity to meet someone they’re attracted to?
Tinamarie: As a fan of old-fashion courtship behaviors, I think this is lovely! Yeah, I know, ‘courtship’ has gotten a bad rap in some circles. Don’t think I’m not a feminist. I identify myself as such, understanding that there is no consensus of what feminism really means. I happen to love flirting! I think it is great fun, and any way to increase the flirtage in our relationships is a good thing. I also respect that others aren’t as comfortable with flirting, so this card seems like a good way to get the message across without stepping on someone’s feelings or sense of propriety.
Olive Juice: How would you describe what it’s like to be single today?
Tinamarie: I’m married and plan to stay that way! However, I’ve been there and know it can be a devastating experience, or not, depending on the perspective of the singleton. The single friends that I know who are the ‘happiest’ (not that I think happiness should be the goal of all our relating, mind you) are those who accept what is, and embrace their lives regardless of relationship states. They are the women who KNOW there are great men out there; they are the MEN who date women for more than just superficial reasons. On the other hand, men and women who come to the arena with specific criteria, higher expectations if you will, without taking a good look at their imperfections, tend to be the least satisfied, in my observations, about the directions of their romantic lives.
Olive Juice: What’s the greatest challenge for single people who are serious about wanting to meet their soul mate?
Tinamarie: Letting go of expectations. The ones society tells us we should have, and the ones our ego insists upon.
Olive Juice: What’s the most common thing people who want to meet other single people do wrong?
Tinamarie: They let fear determine the course of their relationship, instead of letting it unfold naturally. Hold your hands tightly around a handful of water, and what happens? It’s gone, poof, in an instant. Cup your hands, and the water stays.
Olive Juice: What’s the best advice you can give to someone who says they just can’t meet anyone?
Tinamarie: Read Love in 90 days by Diana Kirschner. She’s my inspiration when it comes to dating. I didn’t know about the book when I was single, however, when I read it last year, I was mesmerized by her insights. Sage, practical advice blended with a spiritual understanding that anyone can relate to.