Phicklephilly – Special Report: Haters Gonna Hate

“Look onto your own bloody lives.” – John Lennon

Hello all. First of all I’d like to thank everyone of my followers and everybody who reads and enjoys my blog. I really appreciate the loyalty and enthusiasm of my audience. You’re the best group of creative, intelligent, lovely people I’ve ever encountered in the writing community.

So, Thank you all. I appreciate your words and your thoughts.

The reason for this blog’s success is all of you over the last 3 years. I’ve posted thousands of pieces and have had over 40,000 visitors and over 80,000 page views. I hope maybe I’ve helped a few folks out there with my dating and relationship advice and also I hope they enjoy all of my heartfelt stories and crazy dating experiences.

I’m proud and humbled by all of the attention for my little blog here in Philly.

Anyway, I wrote a piece back in 2017, (nearly 3 years ago!) and forgot about it. It was a goofy post about somebody I met on Bumble but never went out on a date with because they seemed a bit crazy.

Again, it was so long ago and I’ve written so much over the last few years I simply forgot about it.

Two days ago, I noticed a spike in my viewer stats. Frankly I was amazed. (5 times my usual daily views!) Initially I was astounded at all of the attention. I thought that maybe my blog had finally taken off as a literary force!

But when I looked closer I realized that someone, or a group of someones had found this old blog piece and attacked me.

This mad group of trolls crawled out of their caves, or out from under their rocks, or from under their bridges where they live to scare the Billy Goat’s Gruff! (hopefully some of you get the reference!)

They called me all sorts of names and were really mean.

There are thousands of these pigs out there and they love to attach themselves to successful people like blood sucking sea lampreys.

This is my blog, my words and my truth. I control every aspect of it and enjoy that part of it. I happily have to approve every comment that appears on this blog. (I have to because I get at least 50 spam posts a week and it’s all a bunch of nonsense that could hurt the integrity of the site’s function as well as WordPress.)

 

Someone once asked me how to deal with negative feedback. I told them this: “Positive feedback usually makes you feel good. (The warm fuzzy’s we all like from friends, loved one’s and coworkers) and Negative feedback. Negative feedback, when done respectfully and properly, improves your performance.

But what if the negative feedback is mean and unwarranted?

Sadly, every moron now has a voice. The internet. For hundreds of years the only voices you heard were in newspapers, radio, and TV. But since the invention of social media every idiot that wants to anonymously make a comment or attack a person to hurt them can now do it.

We’ve all read about these cowards. These internet bullies who have even hurt children and caused some poor troubled souls to even take their own precious lives.

They’re all despicable cowards that I have no time for. I’ve had my share in the last 3 years. There’s always someone out there who won’t agree with something you did to express yourself and write and create. Most of these morons that attack those of us brave enough to bare our souls through our literature and tell the truth about our live and experiences can barely put together a paragraph of any kind of rational thought.

If it happens to you, please take my simple advice:

It comes down to simple science. As a musician and a man of science, let me share this with you all.

In order for a sound to be made, you need two things. A Transmitter and a Receiver. The transmitter emits a sound, or a comment or anything. It needs a receiver to make a SOUND. With no receiver, there is NO SOUND. You need both to make a SOUND. So if some troll makes a negative comment about your art, simply don’t respond.

The negative comment never sees the light of day on your blog and it silences these fools and cowards who hide behind their computers. Because their lives are so empty, and vacuous they want to hurt those who are strong and have a real voice with their art.

Anyone who holds them out in the public eye with creative ideas will always be met with some adversity from morons who don’t have anything good going on in their lives and have nothing better to do than to attack people with real talent like all of you out there who are writers and artists yourselves.

So these broken transmitters bark their nonsense on your blog and make their snide comments and all you have to do is not approve their comments.

It’s that simple.

Laugh at what they wrote and toss it in your spam file. It’s nothing but trash and don’t let these morons have a voice.

No voice, equals no sound.

Scrape them from the sole of your shoe like you would any other bit of excrement.

Or, look at this way. I once wrote a manuscript for a book 20 years ago. It wasn’t very good and I sent it out to several publishers. I got tons of the usual rejection letters, but there was this one that struck me. She said I was a good writer but didn’t like all of the sex and violence in my work. I took it as an insult. I spoke with an artist friend of mine and he said, “No man, don’t you get it? She rejected your work, but she cared enough to tell you that your work disturbed her. It moved her to have a feeling. Whether it’s joy or revulsion, that’s what art does. It makes you feel something. You made her feel something. That’s a good thing!”

So sadly, in this day and age, haters are going to hate. They’re all a bunch of losers so don’t worry about them and don’t give them a voice.

Take control.

I’ve decided to cut and paste their words here in this blog piece that I control. I will hold these ugly trolls out to all of you, and I will show you what they are… but on my terms.

Here’s what these cowards said about me.

 

Alida 

Wow. Misogyny much?

First – do you have permission to share Ms. Smith’s images? Her name? Her comments to you, which were considered private? Have you no shame nor any concern about a lawsuit?

Second – What is it about you that you find so special and amazing? Looked through your blog here. You claim to be a gentleman, but your posts, especially this one, refute that.

Third – You dare to call yourself a writer, but what I have read from your site so far has been less than impressive. Venting is not writing.

 

 

John

Dear Mr. Hickle, If I were you I’d take this down immediately. You are grossly GUILTY of character defamation, labile, cyber bullying, and slew of other hate related crimes, as well as releasing her personal and confidential information without her consent. If this woman want to, she could sue with in an inch of your life. I know you didn’t like this person, but you are not only way out of line here, you are committing several felonies in the process by keeping this online.

 

 

K R

Honey…the only one with red flags in this exchange is you. Looks like Marey dodged a bullet there. Incel ghoul.

 

Chels

Wow… this is pretty ballsy…. publishing a woman’s images and name I assume without permission.

Glad you got your rocks off. Honestly looks like she dodged a bullet.

 

ashley

You would have been lucky to meet her, you douchebag. Looks like you though which is great because you should see Mary now! She’s a WONDERFUL woman and even an inspiration to me to stay positive no matter what life throws at you. You, my friend, never deserved that first date with Mary because you would have NEVER have been good enough. If only ONE thing you said was right about her then maybe you’d have something here but you never got to know this wonderful woman. Again, you’re a douchebag and have no place writing this bull shit with no actual FACTS to go on. Good luck in your endeavors, I hope woman on Bumble see this and avoid your ass too!spared her 

 

An Actual Writer

Hey Phickle—would you like to know how you come across, here? Do you know how it sounds when you add your bold-faced lies to your perspective?… Do you have any sense of personal accountability or introspection at all? (Rhetorical questions, obvi.)

This isn’t funny. *You* are not funny. I hope the women you’re attempting to meet catch wind of your site and steer clear.

 

Patty

This article is extramural cruel and unnecessary . I’m glad you have the time to purposefully put people down and look down on them for no reason. You are the definition of what a bully is put other people down and make fun of them to make your self feel better . I also love how you multiple time point out that your a lier wonderful quality dude ! She was better off with out you

 

ashley

So phicklephilly has changed the name of the person in this blog to protect their privacy rights… years after it’s been out there online.

I smell a lawsuit!! And one that NEEDS to be heard. Good luck Mr. Phicklephilly;)

 

Frank

Someone who describes themselves as having “been at this a while” has clearly got his own issues with relationships to deal with himself.

I wish I was cool enough to have a blog where I could judge random strangers based on one interaction.

I wonder if you’re still alone…

 

What a collection of failures. All the poor grammar and bad spelling! 

Can you imagine taking the time out of your day to write the above nonsense and actually think that your little pathetic voice is heard by anyone who gives a damn about anything you have to say?

I thought I’d share what these morons said so you can all have a good laugh along with me as I continue to bring you quality content everyday…

Twice a day!

 

Oh… Here’s the best part. All of this nonsense, rage and curiosity caused an incredible spike in my traffic. Thank you trolls and haters.

In the last 48 hours I have had over 1200 page views. Thank you for getting me  closer to my 100,000 page view goal!

(Insert hysterical laughter here)

 

My father once said to me the following words, and it was one of the best pieces of advice he ever gave me.

“Son, the emptiest barrels make the most noise. Ignore them.”

 

Thank you one and all for your continued love and support! I’d love to hear your experiences with this sort of nonsense!

 

Koolkosherkitchen Forever!

 

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Check out the new Phicklephilly podcast on Spotify!

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Here’s How To Have A Long-Distance Open Relationship, According To An Expert

No two relationships are exactly the same. A “normal” relationship can be different for every couple, although I personally have tried to model all of mine off Meredith and Derek in Grey’s Anatomy. (I am single, please don’t ask for details.) For some, normal looks like a long-distance, open relationship, which might not always be easy. But according to a relationship expert, it’s possible to make it work as long as both partners are on the same page about what they want. Still, it does present its own unique challenges. For tips on how to have a long-distance open relationship, I spoke with Dr. Joshua Klapow, clinical psychologist and host of The Kurre and Klapow Show. Remember: You deserve a love that feels right to you, so Klapow’s insight might be able to provide some guidance.

Keeping communication open, but not too frequent, is important in all relationships, but particularly long-distance open relationships. I’ve personally been in long-distance relationships where I wanted constant communication because I couldn’t see my partner, and it ended up making the relationship more strained. “Communicate often but not constantly,” Dr. Klapow tells Elite Daily. “Trying to make up the time you are not together by talking, emailing, and texting constantly simply creates a level of expectation that can’t be sustained. Keep it regular but regimented so that communication doesn’t take over your life.”

In open relationships in particular, too much communication might make your partner worry you’re jealous (or vice versa), which could put a strain on the relationship. Be sure to find a communication rhythm that works for both of you, and you’ll likely have a better chance of success in your open long-distance relationship.

Santi Nunez/Stocksy

Self-reflect, and make sure you’re in the relationship for the right reasons. “What often happens is that one partner agrees to the open long-distance relationship in order to hang on to the relationship,” Dr. Klapow says. “If you are going to be long distance, and you are going to agree to date other people, then your relationship is only as deep and committed as your feelings for each other.” This definitely doesn’t have to be your relationship if you don’t want it to be — only you know why you’ve decided to commit to each other. However, if one of you is in the relationship for any reason other than truly wanting to be in that type of relationship, then it might be time to reevaluate. Figure out what made you begin the relationship in the first place, and remember what drew you to your partner.

Have a way to cope with jealousy when it arises, and your long-distance open relationship is more likely to work out. Communication is critical, and if you have a strategy for telling your partner that you’re jealous, you might not feel like you’re keeping a secret from them. There’s nothing wrong with being envious — it’s totally normal, and it’s especially normal if you don’t get to see your partner as much as you’d like. Still, it’s helpful to focus on your own life when jealousy arises. “Do things for you and only for you,” Dr. Klapow says. “Focus on work, or school when you are not with them. Make friends and enjoy them fully, not as a stopgap for the relationship. The stronger your life can be in terms of activities, hobbies, and other people, the healthier you will be.” Putting the focus on your own life can help keep jealousy in check, and being open with your partner can strengthen the relationship.

Brianna Lee/Stocksy

Sometimes, it can be helpful to change the way you think about the relationship. “Don’t try to formalize something that is not formal,” Dr. Klapow says. “An open long-distance relationship in practice means you are dating other people — nothing more and nothing less.” Of course, only you know if your relationship is truly a relationship (and you get to decide what the term “relationship” means to you), but if it’s easier to think of it as something else, be open to that as well. The two of you can be special to each other in whatever way you like, and sometimes the label of “relationship” puts a strain on the dynamic that you have. If you’re committed to being in a relationship, that’s wonderful, but if you’re open to calling it something else to improve your connection, that might help, too.

Long-distance open relationships can succeed, but only you know if the relationship is right for you. If you and your partner are both fully committed and communicating about your needs, and you’re both happy, then the relationship is healthy, and that’s what matters most. Besides, them being long-distance gives you space to live your own life, and the openness allows you to meet other people. So enjoy the relationship, and happy dating!

 

No two relationships are exactly the same. A “normal” relationship can be different for every couple, although I personally have tried to model all of mine off Meredith and Derek in Grey’s Anatomy. (I am single, please don’t ask for details.) For some, normal looks like a long-distance, open relationship, which might not always be easy. But according to a relationship expert, it’s possible to make it work as long as both partners are on the same page about what they want. Still, it does present its own unique challenges. For tips on how to have a long-distance open relationship, I spoke with Dr. Joshua Klapow, clinical psychologist and host of The Kurre and Klapow Show. Remember: You deserve a love that feels right to you, so Klapow’s insight might be able to provide some guidance.

Keeping communication open, but not too frequent, is important in all relationships, but particularly long-distance open relationships. I’ve personally been in long-distance relationships where I wanted constant communication because I couldn’t see my partner, and it ended up making the relationship more strained. “Communicate often but not constantly,” Dr. Klapow tells Elite Daily. “Trying to make up the time you are not together by talking, emailing, and texting constantly simply creates a level of expectation that can’t be sustained. Keep it regular but regimented so that communication doesn’t take over your life.”

In open relationships in particular, too much communication might make your partner worry you’re jealous (or vice versa), which could put a strain on the relationship. Be sure to find a communication rhythm that works for both of you, and you’ll likely have a better chance of success in your open long-distance relationship.

Santi Nunez/Stocksy

Self-reflect, and make sure you’re in the relationship for the right reasons. “What often happens is that one partner agrees to the open long-distance relationship in order to hang on to the relationship,” Dr. Klapow says. “If you are going to be long distance, and you are going to agree to date other people, then your relationship is only as deep and committed as your feelings for each other.” This definitely doesn’t have to be your relationship if you don’t want it to be — only you know why you’ve decided to commit to each other. However, if one of you is in the relationship for any reason other than truly wanting to be in that type of relationship, then it might be time to reevaluate. Figure out what made you begin the relationship in the first place, and remember what drew you to your partner.

Have a way to cope with jealousy when it arises, and your long-distance open relationship is more likely to work out. Communication is critical, and if you have a strategy for telling your partner that you’re jealous, you might not feel like you’re keeping a secret from them. There’s nothing wrong with being envious — it’s totally normal, and it’s especially normal if you don’t get to see your partner as much as you’d like. Still, it’s helpful to focus on your own life when jealousy arises. “Do things for you and only for you,” Dr. Klapow says. “Focus on work, or school when you are not with them. Make friends and enjoy them fully, not as a stopgap for the relationship. The stronger your life can be in terms of activities, hobbies, and other people, the healthier you will be.” Putting the focus on your own life can help keep jealousy in check, and being open with your partner can strengthen the relationship.

Brianna Lee/Stocksy

Sometimes, it can be helpful to change the way you think about the relationship. “Don’t try to formalize something that is not formal,” Dr. Klapow says. “An open long-distance relationship in practice means you are dating other people — nothing more and nothing less.” Of course, only you know if your relationship is truly a relationship (and you get to decide what the term “relationship” means to you), but if it’s easier to think of it as something else, be open to that as well. The two of you can be special to each other in whatever way you like, and sometimes the label of “relationship” puts a strain on the dynamic that you have. If you’re committed to being in a relationship, that’s wonderful, but if you’re open to calling it something else to improve your connection, that might help, too.

Long-distance open relationships can succeed, but only you know if the relationship is right for you. If you and your partner are both fully committed and communicating about your needs, and you’re both happy, then the relationship is healthy, and that’s what matters most. Besides, them being long-distance gives you space to live your own life, and the openness allows you to meet other people. So enjoy the relationship, and happy dating!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Facebook: phicklephilly       Instagram: @phicklephilly       Twitter: @phicklephilly

Kita – Chapter 42 – Yellow Fever

While baby’s away in Florida, she’s been on my mind and I’ve been thinking about my attraction to women. Asian women in particular. I love all women of all races but find Asian women especially bewitching.

These days you can’t get anywhere with out someone being called out for having yellow fever. Lets talk about what it means honestly, without resorting to ugly name-calling that usually comes out of discussions around this subject.

The term’s been around for a while and is similar to the derisory term Jungle Fever to describe white women who are attracted to black men. That term has largely disappeared but the term Yellow Fever has really sunk in and become a well-known term not used exclusively by Asian women, although most of them are no doubt aware of the phenomenon.

Let’s be 100% clear on one thing: the Interracial Asian/Caucasian couples which are so frequent these days are the total opposite of the cliche of the THAI bride (typically married to an older western man, usually unattractive and with limited options),since the women are from the same backgrounds, similarly educated, etc. Unfortunately, people still have the idea that western men are exploiting so-called submissive Asian women?

Unfortunately the submissive Asian woman is largely a result of Confucian culture in which women are raised to respect men and follow orders from them. No doubt there are some men who will find this behavior attractive and this may be the reason why they are more taken by Asian women.

It must be admitted here that many men find American society to be incredibly rights based and libertarian. you can’t say or do anything without someone being offended. This has truly had a terrible effect on relationships, with 1 in 3 marriages ending in divorce.

I’d be prepared to bet that most women in modern interracial relationships are more intelligent and better-educated than their western male partners. Far from being submissive, most Asian women are very assertive, they simply have a different approach to dealing with say, their frustration and anger than most other women do. I don’t now how effective shouting is but most kinds of women still feel that this is the way to deal with relationship problems.

I’ve been spending time with Asian women for the last few years. I guess success breeds success because I’m making more and more friends with girls who happen to be Asian women. The thing is I know what I’m dealing with and it’s all very reassuring for me. I find that these women enjoy the same things I do and we are culturally similar in spite of being from very different countries I did some internet research on ‘yellow fever’ and it seems most people using it are some women who feel that men shouldn’t be attracted to them. And yet, what is a man supposed to do? When I was younger, I was attracted by blonde women who had long lega (because this was what society held up as a beauty ideal). So I went after these women, even though I was disappointed when I found out that they weren’t what I had expected.  In life, you must go after what you want in order to be happy. Being around these women makes me happy and I’m in no mind to stop, despite what some people would no doubt put down to an unnatural fixation.

According to an article on the Harvard Crimson, ‘There is nothing wrong with being a white man who is attracted to Asian women. Many times, it is a subconscious desire that you can’t really control anyway.’

And the article was written by an Asian woman, Nian Hu,

So there you have it.

So Yellow Fever be damned, here’s a song by one hit wonder, Yello.

I miss Kita!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish everyday.

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Here’s Why Wanting To Start Dating Someone Who’s Not Your Type Can Seriously Pay Off

No moment is quite as ironic as the one when you look back on your dating history and realize you’ve been dating the same type of person your entire life.(So that’s why it’s never worked out! Eureka!) But in all seriousness, it’s so common to have a specific “type” of person you always look to date — whether it’s athletes, artists, intellectuals, and everything in between — and veering away from that type can be challenging. When you find yourself ready or about to start dating someone who’s not your type, it’s important to remember the benefits that branching out can really have.

In his blog, FrankTalks, dating coach Frank Kermit defined what a type really is. “Each of us has our preference of what we like, what turns us on, and what drives us wild,” he wrote. “Sometimes, the type of person we are attracted to is the kind of person that we can function well in a relationship with. But other times, the very type of person we are most attracted to is exactly the type of person that is simply incompatible as a long-term partner.” If you usually fall into the latter category, then giving someone who’s not your usual type a chance is a step in the right direction.

The most important thing to keep in mind when you’re ready to start dating outside your typical type is to keep an open mind about the possibilities this person might bring, Shula Melamed, MA, MPH, and well-being coach says. “If they are not your usual type, is there something about the things you do share in common or the way that they make you feel that transcend [that] type?” she tells Elite Daily.

Even if you don’t think you and this person will work together, just trying to date outside your type can really improve your love life, Melamed points out. By being open to it, you may find “the missing link in having better relationships,” she says.

“It’s good to expand your horizons,” Melamed says. But it can be important to keep in mind that, “going outside your type might cause challenges in some ways, and if these challenges arise, [don’t] try and turn this person into someone they are not,” she continues. You’re a total gem, and the person you’re considering dating probably is, too. Maybe they’re a ruby, and you usually prefer sapphires, but that’s fine! But both are gems with wonderful qualities, nonetheless. See where I’m going with this? Case in point: Dating outside of your type may pay off in ways you never would’ve expected, and make you happier than you ever thought possible.

In fact, your type can change over time. According to Kermit, attraction can be “programmed and re-programmed throughout our lives by life experience.” So, what may be your type today, may not be your type in five years. “Romance and lust tend to be time-limited,” he wrote. “What drives us to feel attraction is not solely based on what we were born to feel attraction for.”

Your type may change repeatedly until you find someone you want to stick with for life, and that person may be the exact opposite of what you thought you were looking for in the first place. So, maybe it’s better to avoid labeling certain people your “type” and others “not your type,” and just date whoever you’re curious about. Granted, the people you date may have similar characteristics that you’re drawn to, but that doesn’t mean they’re all the same person. So, when you’re ready to start dating someone who’s not your usual type, keep this in mind: I’m trying something new, and it might be fully worth it.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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14 Cringeworthy Opening Lines Real Women Have Gotten IRL That Are Totally Shocking

Let’s be real: Flirting is not always easy. Whether you make a joke that totally doesn’t land or you ask someone out only to learn that they have a partner — making the first move can sometimes be tricky. Of course, when it comes to flirting with someone new, the line between endearingly awkward and full-blown terrible can be dangerous territory to tread. If someone doesn’t respect your personal space or if they get, like, uncomfortably sexual two seconds into talking — cringeworthy opening lines can make you never want to leave your house again.

Of course, if you’re trying to going out with your friends or even by yourself, you don’t need to let anyone crash your plans. If someone is trying to flirt and you’re not feeling it, it’s always OK to tell them to buzz off. (Do people still say that?) You’re obviously a beautiful flawless angel that anyone would be lucky to talk to, but that doesn’t mean that just anyone is allowed to talk to you if you’re not interested.

I asked 13 women for the most cringeworthy opening lines people have tried on them and, well, I may literally never get over what came next.

1. I NEVER LIKED MATH

You’re a nine out of 10, and I’m the one you need.

— Laura, 27

2. I’LL TAKE A RAIN CHECK

I know it’s the summer, but you’re guaranteed to get a full seven inches tonight.

— Kim, 24

3. NO, THANK YOU

This guy summoned my over with a finger gesture and then said, ‘I made you come with one finger, imagine what I could do with my whole fist!’

— SupineProtoplasm

4. …I GOTTA GO

When I saw you my heart skipped a beat. Then it pumped blood to my corpora cavernosa, causing my penis to become erect.

— Aqquila89

5. I THINK MY UBER IS HERE

If I was an enzyme, I’d be DNA helices so I could unzip your genes.

— wuroh7

6. YOUR MOM WOULDN’T APPROVE

You smell like my mom.

— TheFifthMovement

7. I’M A SOLO HERO

I was working at a convenience store just off campus from the local college. Some jerk stumbled over from a dorm party one Friday night. He was trying way too hard to drunkenly flirt with me. I told him politely that I had a boyfriend. And he replies, ‘Dump the zero and go with the hero, baby.’ I couldn’t help myself. I laughed and laughed until he turned tail and left. It was so unbearably cringeworthy.

— Reina_Banana_Pug

8. CAN’T BUY CLASS

M’lady, I’m sure you’re sick of all these boys, so how about you give a man with class a chance?

— soccergirl13

9. JUST, NO.

 

Once a guy told me, ‘Miss, you got a body like a chocolate bar.’ I said, ‘So, I am flat on both sides.’ He looked confused for a minute and said, ‘No, chocolate bars can be fat like snickers.’ I said, ‘Are you calling me fat?’ He looked defeated and walked away.

— sawdustbrain

10. I THINK I NEED SOME SPACE

Ayo, girl there ’bout to only be eight planets cuz I’m gonna destroy Uranus.

— PmButtPics4ADrawing

11. I’LL STAY IN, THANKS

Hey girl, you’re like my appendix, I don’t know how you work, but this feeling in my stomach makes me wanna take you out.

— kingJoffi

12. I’M A FREELANCER

‘Are you an unemployed CEO?’ ‘No, why?’ ‘Because you look like you could use some company.’

— ratboid314

13. I’LL DANCE BY MYSELF, THANKS

 

I was once walking through a park when a cute guy approached me and struck up a conversation. He asked me to salsa dance, which I thought was kind of odd (and I turned down), and asked for my number (which I gave to him). We texted a bit but never met up afterward. Then, a full year later, I was walking through another park 10 minutes away, and the same guy approached me and asked me to salsa dance! I recognized him immediately and called him out on it. He showed me his contact list on his phone: it was full of girls’ first names with one-word descriptions (‘blonde,’ ‘redhead,’ ‘tall’) and rankings out of 10 — all girls he picked up in this exact same way. Obviously, I never went out with him after that, either.

— Hannah, 26

14. I’M NOT REALLY IN THE MOOD TO CHAT

I may not be the prettiest girl in here, but I’m the only one talking to you.

— jubileo5

 

From parties to bars, sometimes it feels like cringeworthy opening lines are everywhere. Of course, you deserve to go where you want to go without fighting off any unwanted attention. If someone’s trying to flirt and you’re not into it — it’s always OK to give them a big Thank U, Next. And if they’re not getting the message, it’s OK to “Next” them without thanking them at all.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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We Have Ruined Childhood

For youngsters these days, an hour of free play is like a drop of water in the desert. Of course they’re miserable.

According to the psychologist Peter Gray, children today are more depressed than they were during the Great Depression and more anxious than they were at the height of the Cold War. A 2019 study published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology found that between 2009 and 2017, rates of depression rose by more than 60 percent among those ages 14 to 17, and 47 percent among those ages 12 to 13. This isn’t just a matter of increased diagnoses. The number of children and teenagers who were seen in emergency rooms with suicidal thoughts or having attempted suicide doubled between 2007 and 2015.

To put it simply, our kids are not O.K.

For a long time, as a mother and as a writer, I searched for a single culprit. Was it the screens? The food? The lack of fresh air and free time, the rise of the overscheduled, overprotected child, the overarching culture of anxiety and fear?

Those things might all contribute. But I’ve come to believe that the problems with children’s mental and emotional health are caused not by any single change in kids’ environment but by a fundamental shift in the way we view children and child-rearing, and the way this shift has transformed our schools, our neighborhoods and our relationships to one another and our communities.

The work of raising children, once seen as socially necessary labor benefiting the common good, is an isolated endeavor for all but the most well-off parents. Parents are entirely on their own when it comes to their offspring’s well-being. Many have had to prioritize physical safety and adult supervision over healthy emotional and social development.

No longer able to rely on communal structures for child care or allow children time alone, parents who need to work are forced to warehouse their youngsters for long stretches of time. School days are longer and more regimented. Kindergarten, which used to be focused on play, is now an academic training ground for the first grade. Young children are assigned homework even though numerous studies have found it harmful. STEM, standardized testing and active-shooter drills have largely replaced recess, leisurely lunches, art and music.

The role of school stress in mental distress is backed up by data on the timing of child suicide. “The suicide rate for children is twice what it is for children during months when school is in session than when it’s not in session,” according to Dr. Gray. “That’s true for suicide completion, suicide attempts and suicidal ideas, whereas for adults, it’s higher in the summer.” But the problems with kids’ mental and emotional health are not only caused by what goes on in the classroom. They also reflect what’s happening in our communities. The scarcity of resources of every kind, including but not limited to access to mental health services, health care, affordable housing and higher education, means that many parents are working longer and harder than ever. At the same time that more is demanded of parents, childhood free time and self-directed activities have become taboo.

And so for many children, when the school day is over, it hardly matters; the hours outside school are more like school than ever. Children spend afternoons, weekends and summers in aftercare and camps while their parents work. The areas where children once congregated for unstructured, unsupervised play are now often off limits. And so those who can afford it drive their children from one structured activity to another. Those who can’t keep them inside. Free play and childhood independence have become relics, insurance risks, at times criminal offenses.

Tali Raviv, the associate director of the Center for Childhood Resilience, says many children today are suffering a social-skills deficit. She told me kids today “have fewer opportunities to practice social-emotional skills, whether it’s because they live in a violent community where they can’t go outside, or whether it’s because there’s overprotection of kids and they don’t get the independence to walk down to the corner store.” They don’t learn “how to start a friendship, how to start a relationship, what to do when someone’s bothering you, how to solve a problem.”

 

Many parents and pediatricians speculate about the role that screen time and social media might play in this social deficit. But it’s important to acknowledge that simply taking away or limiting screens is not enough. Children turn to screens because opportunities for real-life human interaction have vanished; the public places and spaces where kids used to learn to be people have been decimated or deemed too dangerous for those under 18.

And so for many Americans, the nuclear family has become a lonely institution — and childhood, one long unpaid internship meant to secure a spot in a dwindling middle class.

Something has to change, says Denise Pope, a co-founder of Challenge Success, an organization based in Palo Alto, Calif., that helps schools make research-backed changes to improve children’s mental health. Kids need recess. They need longer lunches. They need free play, family time, meal time. They need less homework, fewer tests, a greater emphasis on social-emotional learning.

Challenge Success also works with parents, encouraging them to get together with their neighbors and organize things like extracurricular-free days when kids can simply play, and teaching them how not to intervene in normal peer conflict so that children can build problem-solving skills themselves. A similar organization, Let Grow, helps schools set up unstructured free play before and after the school day.

Dr. Gray told me it’s no surprise that the program, which he consults for, has been well received. “Children are willing to get up an hour early to have free play, one hour a week,” he said. “It’s like a drop of water if you’ve been in the desert.”

These groups are doing important work, but if that kind of desperation is any indication, we shouldn’t be surprised that so many kids are so unhappy. Investing in a segment of the population means finding a way to make them both safe and free. When it comes to kids, we too often fall short. It’s no wonder so many are succumbing to despair. In many ways, America has given up on childhood, and on children.

 

This blog has been dating and relationships for years. Should I start to write some more self help pieces like this?

 

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If Dating Apps Give You Texting Anxiety, Here’s What To Do

Imagine you match with a total snack on your favorite dating app, but after the excitement settles in, you started to feel a little nervous about actually talking to them. Do you message first? What do you say? How long do you wait to reply? Do you mention that you’ve already Googled them, know about their soccer podcast, and saw on Facebook that their high school girlfriend lived with your ex last summer? (Small world.) If dating apps give you texting anxiety, or if your brain starts to spiral once you’ve started messaging a cutie, you are certainly not alone.

Whether you can’t decide if you should send a sarcastic meme, a sincere response, or if you literally feel your insides rot as you wait for them to reply to you, it’s totally common to feel stressed about digital dating.

“For better and for worse, dating apps have become the new normal for dating. People no longer have to be vulnerable in person and approach strangers because they can use their phone to buffer a lot of the anxiety required to meet someone new,” Nicole Richardson licensed marriage and family therapist, tells Elite Daily. “It’s really common to feel some anxiety around how to put yourself out there in a way that will attract what you are looking for in return.”

It can be hard to know just how much to share with someone you just matched with. And when you want to make a good first impression, but you haven’t actually met IRL yet — it’s super easy to overthink every text or to want to appeara certain way to your date. Cue: Trying to seem “cute” and “chill,” and not “eating blue cheese crumbles from the container watching Sister Wives.” According to Claudia Cox, relationship coach, the texting anxiety you may feel on apps can be a product of overthinking how to make yourself seem a certain way (i.e. “cute” or “chill”).

“A lot of people try to avoid rejection by creating the perfect profile or the best response ever,” Cox says. “But you cannot control the uncontrollable — meaning someone else’s attraction to you.” Cox shares that with the inescapable role of texting in dating today — it’s common for singles to overthink their every message. And with the growing pressure to be chill(literally push me off a boat) there’s pressure to be interested, but not what Cox calls, “too interested.”

According to Richardson, though it may seem harmless to constantly message your date soon into matching, constantly communicating with someone you haven’t spent that much time with IRL can actually add to your anxiety. “Texting too much in the beginning is a mistake,” Richardson says. “It creates a false sense of intimacy and can make the first couple of interactions more difficult because you have a built up image of each other that is not necessarily the person you are interacting with.”

If you started messaging a potential boo on a dating app and switched to texting, you may find yourself constantly talking to someone who you haven’t even met yet. And though you may not realize it, you may be creating an idealized version in your head about who this person is. “There are singles who overly fantasize about someone after just looking at their profile — without even meeting them in person,” Cox says. “This creates anxiety as it builds the other person up into someone so amazing that you’re intimidated to communicate with them.”

If dating apps are giving you texting anxiety, the experts suggest being kind and patient with yourself, but ultimately remembering that the app is just an app. “Dating apps are just an introduction service,” Jennifer B. Rhodes, licensed psychologist and relationship expert tells Elite Daily. “If you have anxiety about an app, be compassionate with yourself, but try it out. The experience will likely give you valuable learning opportunities needed to help build your self confidence.”

For Thomas Edwards Jr., coach and founder of The Professional Wingman, the first step to nixing dating app anxiety is to see your dating app as just another form of social media. “Depending on where you are in your pursuit of a relationship, there can be a ton of attention given to these apps. The first thing to do is not put your dating app on a pedestal,” Edwards says. “The other thing to do is share your experience with others both online and off. This will not only put both of you at ease, but more importantly, your anxiety will diminish long-term as you continue to share.” If you’re feeling totally nervous about messaging a new cutie, according to Edwards Jr., sharing your nerves with them can actually put you both at ease. Rather than pressuring yourself to look cool or seem calm and collected, admitting to your date that dating makes you anxious or that texting keeps you up at night can ease budding dating app tension.

For Clarissa Silva, behavioral scientist and creator of Your Happiness Hypothesis Method, the best way to beat dating app anxiety is to remember that love has no formula. “Algorithms, apps, and sites don’t have any different odds at finding you love,” Silva tells Elite Daily. “Keep the focus on trying to explore if theyare a good fit.” Rather than scrutinizing how you’re appearing to them — according to Silva, it’s important to see how your date fits into your life too. If they don’t seem to have have a compatible sense of humor or if they never reply to your texts on time — rather than changing the way you talk or worrying about what they’re thinking about you — you may realize that you’re not super into them. “The only question anyone should look to answer is ‘Am I having fun with this person?'” Edwards Jr. says. “The only way to make that the only question, is to make sure you have fun no matter what.”

If you’re still feeling anxious about dating apps, though it may seem a little cheesy, the experts share the power of positive thinking. “Visualize yourself successfully flirting and meeting new people. Stay focused on the process, and don’t put your sense of worth into your ability to score a date with every person you message,” Cox says. “Remind yourself that the person you’re messaging might be nervous. You don’t know them, or their story yet. So, keep it fun and don’t fall into the assumptions trap!”

And if somethings feels a little off, or if texting someone is making you anxious, it’s always OK to turn your phone off and take a hot bath or go see a friend. “Don’t push yourself too hard. If something really doesn’t feel good to you, don’t do it,” Richardson says. “Do positive things for yourself and spend time with uplifting and positive people (it’s contagious).” According to Richardson, taking time away from dating apps to hike with friends, read a new book, or visit a cool museum can quell any texting stress. Additionally, finding IRL hobbies or doing fun things away from your phone can give you a ton of cool conversation starters with dating app potential boos. “If you need a little more calming, meditate and journal to let yourself get it out in a constructive way,” Richardson says.

Feeling texting anxiety from dating apps is completely normal. Dating can be super intimidating, and the world of apps can make it seem like there are simultaneously 10,000 people and zero people out there for you. If you’re feeling nervous about dating apps, try putting down your phone and doing something fun IRL. Visualizing yourself totally killing it on a first date can help nix any stress as well. At the end of the day, you are a flawless angel, and dating is supposed to be fun. And with some positive thinking, you can totally swipe left on any dating-app fueled texting anxiety.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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