Somehow I always find great pieces on VOGUE!

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The Relationship Power Struggle: Is It Always Better to Have the Upper Hand?

For the first year my girlfriend and I were together, we kept our relationship open. This was largely my decision, and one might say I took advantage of the privileges of our open agreement more than she did. The couple times she suggested we be monogamous, I refused. Though we were both very in love, it’s clear to me now that I had the power—the relationship was mostly on my terms. This was true even down to the little things; she usually made time to hang out with my friends, and do the things I wanted to do, rather than vice versa.
 
Then, last December, after much deliberation, we decided to be monogamous. I was happy about it—I finally felt ready to devote myself to her fully and to make our relationship stronger. But soon afterward, I sensed a distance on her part. It was on Christmas day, while I was opening presents with my family, that she came clean via text: she was cheating on me.
 
Predictably, this precipitated an immediate panic attack. I collapsed into a stack of presents and began gasping for air as my dad frantically searched the house for my then recently deceased grandfather’s leftover Valium. (Though funny-ish now, it was less lolz at the time.) I was intensely hurt, and terrified we might break up, but beyond that, the shift of power left me completely disoriented. How could I have gone from CEO of this relationship to fired in an instant? But even in the midst of my confusion, one thing was very clear: I had been taking my girlfriend for granted.
 
All relationships have a power dynamic, and it’s usually clear who has the reins. When you have control, it’s difficult to imagine it ever being any other way. Whether you’re conscious of it or not, your ego inflates, and it seems almost instinctual to see how much you can get away with. Stupidly, you don’t expect your partner could ever turn the tables on you. In some relationships, the power dynamic is more subtle, a constant ebb and flow of leverage. In others, the scales are not so even.
 
One friend of mine actually chooses, over and over, not to have the upper hand, by always dating controlling women. Despite his constant complaining that his girlfriends boss him around, assign him chores, and drag him to boring social events, deep down, you can tell he loves it—he lives to be The Pet. He even loves complaining about it. Somewhat similarly, I know many people who like to “date up,” to bask in the reflective glory of someone more successful, wealthier, or of higher social status than themselves. In a way, being dominated is what enables them to respect their partner. Sort of like Yves Saint Laurent and his long-term partner, Pierre Bergé. I recently read an article that described how Bergé never walked in front of Saint Laurent, but always one step behind. This one little detail speaks volumes about the nature of their relationship, and the power dynamic that made them both happy and comfortable.
 
Meanwhile, a close girlfriend of mine insists, “It’s always better to be the 10 dating the 7.” Better that your partner worship you, in other words. As it happens, this was my mother’s point of view too. When I was growing up, she told me point blank, “It’s best to date ugly guys, because they love you more.”
 
Personally, however, I’ve always preferred my relationships to be more even-keeled. Like, I know I always say I want to date James Franco, but if it came down to it, would I really want to be the 7 to the 10? No way—I’m far too jealous, insecure, and attention-starved to handle that.
 
My friend Erika Allen, a 27-year-old editor at The New York Times, is all too familiar with uneven power balances. “Back when I was in college, this guy pursued me for months,” Erika told me, a tinge of resentment still in her voice. At the beginning, she explained, she could take it or leave it. He said “I love you” after only two months, which was earlier than she was willing to reciprocate. But eventually, things got serious. “And then I let my guard down,” she said. “Suddenly he was the least available person on the planet. It’s weird—you don’t care, you don’t care, and then all of a sudden you care so much. And usually your partner cares too, so it’s fine. But in this situation, as soon as I cared, he totally checked out.”
 
In other words, Erika had lost the higher ground, and her ego sunk along with it. “It was amazing how debilitating it was,” she remarked. “The suddenness of the flip made me so desperate that there was no possibility of pulling back or reassessing the situation. Instead, I just tried to force him to be the boyfriend I wanted him to be. Soon after, he broke up with me, and it took me longer to get over the relationship than we were actually together.” For her boyfriend, it was all about the chase—the hunt for power—and once he achieved it, the dynamic no longer felt exciting. It’s like that Barbara Kruger quote: “You want it, you buy it, you forget it.”
 
We all know the deal. Too often we want what we can’t have, and we find people who are too available unattractive. Human psychology is embarrassingly simple that way. And as we get older and enter into more relationships, these tendencies become increasingly transparent, and thus easier to manipulate. And as childish as it may sound, we all still play these games—well into adulthood. “It feels like game-playing, but it really works,” Erika marveled. “If you feel your partner is taking you for granted, you can just say, all right, I’m going to make myself less available this week. Predictably, this makes them want you more, and the turnaround is usually so fast, it’s almost a joke.”
 
But sometimes, even when you know how to play the game, you can’t help but act like a psycho anyway. And that’s what happened when I found out my girlfriend had cheated. In that moment, I should have walked away, let her regret what she’d done, and sweat it out. But I was frantic, so instead I called her 33 times, then showed up at her apartment, my face all red and puffy and slurring from the zillion Valium I took. When she told me that she “needed space to think,” I just laid face-down on the floor and refused to leave her bedroom. Unattractive?
 
Erika broke it down for me: “When you’re hurt, or when the tables are turned on you, sometimes the instinct is to try and assert power in another way—by being overly emotional, or saying, ‘You hurt me so badly.’ You’re just desperate to get back to your normal, loving relationship state. But that method rarely works. What you really should do is walk away and have lunch with someone else.”
 
Eventually, my girlfriend and I were able to work things out, and our relationship has since leveled off to a more healthy, even power balance. And although it was an awful experience, in the end, her turning the tables made me realize how important she is to me. It also led me to wonder: Is it possible to fully appreciate someone without the threat of losing them?

We all know when we’re being out of line. In the past, when partners of mine have put up with a barrage of my bitchiness, I’ve thought, “Are you really going to let me get away with this?” While it’s natural to seek the upper hand, it turns out that, if you have too much power over your partner, it can become surprisingly unattractive. Power is inextricably linked to respect, and to truly respect your partner, you have to believe that they would leave you. At the same time, the real challenge is learning to appreciate your partner before it gets to that point, and recognizing a good thing when it’s good.

(via cinthia-banuelos)

Vest trend

Oversized Vest Trend

So many great post, Elite Daily

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The Difference Between A Bad B*tch And A Basic B*tch

Thanks to the rise of this popular YouTube video, the term “bad bitch” has been on the tip of everyone’s tongue this summer. Yet, despite the clichéd rap lyrics, few people actually understand what really differentiates the bad bitches from the basic bitches.

While the YouTube video did a great job of illustrating some warning signs (foot tattoo of astrological sign, “Sex and the City” themed brunches, “Teen Mom” marathons), a bad bitch’s badness extends past her lack of yoga pants and directly to her core.

Here are a few ways to tell the difference between a bad bitch and a basic bitch:

It has nothing to do with looks.

Contrary to widely held beliefs, piercings, tattoos or other body modifications do not make a girl a bad bitch. The baddest bitches are often the one’s you’d least suspect.

A bad bitch has her own style and doesn’t need to prove anything to anyone. She’s far too concerned with accomplishing her goals to worry about attracting others through pure shock value alone.

That being said, maybe her passion in life is to be the best tattoo artist, in which case, she’s doing her own thing.


Basic bitches judge.

Bad bitches try to understand. The baddest bitches in the world are the ones who actually take the time to step out of their comfort zones and try to understand the world from a different perspective.


Basic bitches quote Marilyn Monroe.

Bad bitches quote from books they’ve actually read. Basic bitches think they should be accepted for who they are, while bad bitches continually strive to improve themselves.

While the basic bitch wants a man that will handle her at her worst, a bad bitch wants a man that will make her better. Basic bitches enjoy lounging in yoga pants and watching “Say Yes to the Dress,” while bad bitches are actually out doing yoga — probably on a mountain, paddle board or beach somewhere.


Basic bitches stick to what they know.

Bad bitches expand their horizons. While the basic bitch brunches primarily with her high school girlfriends, sorority sisters and maybe a handful of work colleagues, the bad bitch’s social circle includes people of all ages, races and backgrounds.

The bad bitch knows that a diverse group of friends and experiences is the key to personal growth and development.


Bad bitches do not brunch.

Sure, they might eat French toast or pancakes on occasion, but they don’t have time for hours of idle gossip and unproductive chitchat.


Basic bitches talk about people, while bad bitches talk about ideas.

Bad bitches don’t judge each other; it’s in poor form. They’re more likely to spend their time talking about books, movies, current events and ideas rather than worry about what the Kardashians or even their sorority sisters are doing.

Bad bitches know that gossiping is a waste of time.


Basic bitches think about what they don’t have.

Bad bitches view everything as a resource, even the struggles. While basic bitches bemoan their lack of money, a boyfriend, husband or kids, a bad bitch gives thanks every day for the good she has in her life, even if it’s not a lot.

The bad bitch figures out how to play the cards she was dealt rather than worrying about what’s in someone else’s hand.


Basic bitches live their lives on someone else’s terms.

Bad bitches write their own terms. Basic bitches get upset when their life doesn’t go according to some blueprint. A bad bitch knows that she’s the architect of her life and she draws up her own plan.

If some people don’t like what she created, screw it. Some people didn’t like the Mona Lisa. While basic bitches rely on the Internet to tell them what they should be doing at a certain age, a bad bitch knows that fun, happiness and hope have no age limits.


A basic bitch lives in fear, while a bad bitch lives in hope.

Some of the baddest bitches I know range in age from 20 to 38. They’ve realized that life is short and it could end tomorrow, and a bad bitch realizes that she is limited only by the constraints she sets on herself.


A basic bitch thinks looks are everything.

A bad bitch understands that looks matter, but they’re not everything. Bad bitches are realistic enough to understand that physical attractiveness is important, but it’s just one piece of the puzzle.

Lots of pretty girls can get in the front door, but the baddest bitches are the ones who end up in the penthouse of the life that they built for themselves.

BEYOND OBSESSED with this look. I’m gonna start buying silk scarves now.

Came upon this article on Elite Daily and felt a strong urge to share it. The article explains the reality of the dating world in New York City.

My favorite part:
The good thing about endless options is that when you do find the right, perfect one, it’s going to be out-of-this-f*cking-world spectacular. To me, and all the other narcissists of the city, that is what’s really important.

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Why New Yorkers Are Perpetually Dating And Never Settling

I went to the second biggest high school in Indiana. I graduated with about 750 other kids in my class, and for the school, that was considered a pretty small group.

I’ve always considered this fact to be one of the reasons why I ended up wanting to live in New York City. There’s something about wanting to be the big fish in a big pond that I learned while in high school.

I didn’t want to just blend in; I wanted everyone in my school of nearly 3,800 students to know exactly who I was.

High school is also where I had my first real forays into romance. We clearly had a lot of options, romantically. It differed from the experience some of my good friends had at schools with only a few hundred kids.

There, they had a good chance of having classes with basically anyone they dated. At my school, for the most part, every single girl I saw was never in a class with me.

I was able to date and keep the girls at arm’s length. This was great because when something went wrong, there were thousands of other options in the school and I didn’t have to sit next to Peggy Sue in every other class.

Ten years later, things haven’t changed much at all dating-wise. Living in New York is the city of far, far too many options. I never thought I’d say that but it’s true.

How many days have I wandered the East Village without being able to decide where to eat lunch? Not because there’s nothing good, but because there are too many great restaurants.

There are just too many bars, too many amazing neighborhoods and then, of course, too many girls.

This is a city of first dates. You meet someone out at a bar or a coffee shop or a bookstore or wherever really, and you get his or her number. You end up going on a date and it goes fairly well.

However, the truth of it is, one of you is usually into it and the other just isn’t.

There is no such thing as “just settling” in New York. Unless you’re both immediately head-over-heels for each other, you can just move on to the next one and pretty much never have to see the other person again.

Sadly, our generation uses the “just never text the person back again” technique, instead of being straight up and telling the other person we’re just not interested. Ah, what a glorious time of technology we live in.

Then, of course, you get to awkwardly run into that person at 9 am on the L train. Despite its depth, running into people you know in NYC can happen.

These days, my Facebook homepage is littered with wedding announcements from people I know from back home in the Midwest. There’s nothing wrong with that and I’m happy for most of them, but it always makes me wonder if what they’re experiencing is true love or simple complacency.

Did they just give up on dating because the market is so limited? Is it easier to just settle when you’re not in a city like New York? Probably.

However, for the residents of this insane city and me, settling isn’t an option.

We’ll just keep searching within the oversaturated market that is New York City. We’ll keep going on the first dates. We’ll randomly stop texting people back.

The good thing about endless options is that when you do find the right, perfect one, it’s going to be out-of-this-f*cking-world spectacular. To me, and all the other narcissists of the city, that is what’s really important.

(via s-l-c-f-s)

I have the biggest crush on this guy, Brian Trunzo, who is starring in Bravo’s newest dating reality show The Singles Project. This lawyer-turned-entrepreneur - more specifically menswear retailer - is just so confident, smart, cool and well-dressed (I mean duh, he works in fashion). Like how can anyone not crush on that hair style? He somehow reminds me of Marcus from Andi season of the Bachelorette. 

Did I mention that he is into Asians too? lol

I have the biggest crush on this guy, Brian Trunzo, who is starring in Bravo’s newest dating reality show The Singles Project. This lawyer-turned-entrepreneur - more specifically menswear retailer - is just so confident, smart, cool and well-dressed (I mean duh, he works in fashion). Like how can anyone not crush on that hair style? He somehow reminds me of Marcus from Andi season of the Bachelorette. 


Did I mention that he is into Asians too? lol