That was the take-home message of a lecture I attended:
How to get QUALITY guys to COMMIT TO YOU & STAY MARRIED
The lecturer was Ziva Kramer, a dating coach / shadchanit / "relationship expert." Sponsored by the Jewish International Connection, the evening also included an open bar (kind of wasted on most women, especially a substance abuse counselor, although I did have one beer), a raffle (which I wasn't interested in, since I'm not a lucky person), and Q&A with "Celebrity Stylist Mark Garrison." For $20, I figured it was worth a shot.
I got there exhausted after a long day of training (and a short night of sleep, like tonight). After signing in, I was offered raffle tickets, which I declined, and told I could curbside Mark G. for hair advice. I'm always interested in hair advice, so I approached him and said that I was suffering from post-Brazilian keratin frizz. He lifted a hank of my hair and ran his fingers through it professionally and dispassionately.
"It looks pretty good," he said. "You haven't done anything else to your hair, right -- no color or other processes?" he asked. "It's virgin hair."
Nice to know that part of me still is.
"Virgin hair doesn't respond as well to process as hair that's already been chemically treated," he told me. "The next time you do the keratin, you'll have less frizz. Where did you have it done?" he asked. I told him. "I'm not familiar with them. We do the procedure at my salon."
I'm sure it costs a lot more at your salon. But I thanked him and got some crudités. I suppose the consult was worth the price of admission.
Ziva spoke for about half an hour about how touching a man induces the release of oxytocin in women, whereas touching a woman induces the release of testosterone in a man.
Oxytocin is a hormone that makes you feel more attached and bonded to a person -- this destroys your objectivity and ability to assess whether a man is really right for you. That can lead to wasting time in dead-end relationships that won't lead to the chuppah. In contrast, testosterone makes men more impulsive and less thoughtful, and will cause them to ultimately lose interest in the woman they're touching. (She only spoke for half an hour, but this was the gist.)
Ziva's got something of a point. She quoted Andrew Sullivan's piece on testosterone therapy for his HIV:
Within hours, and at most a day, I feel a deep surge of energy.... My attention span shortens. In the two or three days after my shot, I find it harder to concentrate on writing and feel the need to exercise more. My wit is quicker, my mind faster, but my judgment is more impulsive.... And then after a few days... [I am] less directed toward action than toward interaction, less toward pride than toward lust.
The odd thing is that, however much experience I have with it, this lust peak still takes me unawares.... It creeps up on you. It is only a few days later that I look back and realize that I spent hours of the recent past socializing in a bar or checking out every potential date who came vaguely over my horizon. You realize more acutely than before that lust is a chemical. It comes; it goes. It waxes; it wanes. You are not helpless in front of it, but you are certainly not fully in control.
How a wife is to manage testosterone surges in her husband and keep him committed to her, Ziva did not address, although I suspect she'd champion taharat hamishpacha. But she says she doesn't charge for her matchmaking services, so I'm going to try to meet with her. Whether I'll be able to keep myself from touching men I date is anybody's guess.
Copyright (c) "Ayelet Survivor"
Haven't seen it -- I like watching movies for distraction and escape, so I tend to go for comedies, fantasy/sci-fi, and period dramas. Life is stressful enough ;) I'm looking forward to "The Watchmen."
Sorry about the work stress. I hope it works itself out soon.