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I'm a Professional Dating Coach / Relationship Counsellor, ask me anything! AMA watch

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    I occasionally get people PMing me asking for advice that is often somewhat generalisable so I figured I'd make a mother-thread, in order to share related insights with all TSRians. People are still welcome to PM me in confidence, however, especially those seeking specific/detailed guidance

    My existing series of threads on early phase dating/relationships advice for guys (1, 2, 3) and girls (1) will introduce you to my particular school of thought. A lot of my advice is premised on the core principles established in them and I may well refer you to them in response to your query

    My advice is based on a great deal of forum discussion/advice giving (10,000+ related posts), a fair bit of personal experience (15+ years of dating/relationships), plus a good deal of broad 'internet research' (over 10+ years), insights from behavioural psychology, and professional work

    This is not to suggest that my advice will be appropriate in every situation, nor that I believe that I know it all. I am not an accredited/affiliated practitioner and my advice is of course not intended to replace that of any relevant healthcare professional. Always consult your GP/therapist regarding mental/physical health issues, and also consider sharing with close friends and family - that's what they're there for!

    I welcome discussion, debate, feedback, constructive criticism and extra thoughts/ideas others may wish to contribute
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    What are your qualifications for this role?
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    should i play it safe and use Factor 50 this afternoon ?
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    (Original post by Foo.mp3)
    [/I]
    I just realised that my boyfriend asked my friend out. She said no. But she wants me dump him. It was some time ago and I know I am nobodies first choice. What do I do? Dump or stay? It was some time ago. We broke up then he asked her. When she said no he came back to me! So dump or stay?
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    (Original post by Bham369)
    I just realised that my boyfriend asked my friend out. She said no. But she wants me dump him. It was some time ago and I know I am nobodies first choice. What do I do? Dump or stay? It was some time ago. We broke up then he asked her. When she said no he came back to me! So dump or stay?
    Dump. You're muslim. Stay away from haram relationships
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    (Original post by the bear)
    should i play it safe and use Factor 50 this afternoon ?
    do you even news?? Check the UVA rating first.
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    (Original post by SmashConcept)
    do you even news?? Check the UVA rating first.
    sorry i thought you were a helpful person.
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    (Original post by mmmmmmmmmmmmm)
    Dump. You're muslim. Stay away from haram relationships
    Who are you to tell her what's haram and what's not?
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    (Original post by Blackshadow)
    Who are you to tell her what's haram and what's not?
    Socialising is haram, not getting your 86 virgins.
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    (Original post by Bham369)
    I just realised that my boyfriend asked my friend out. She said no. But she wants me dump him. It was some time ago and I know I am nobodies first choice. What do I do? Dump or stay? It was some time ago. We broke up then he asked her. When she said no he came back to me! So dump or stay?
    Dump. Not necessarily bc you're Muslim but he doesn't seem to respect you
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    (Original post by Foo.mp3)
    X
    How much money do you make?
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    I too would like to know what qualifications you have for this, as largely people who assign themselves this professional title merely recycle old cliches and meaningless buzzwords, and are frankly self-aggrandising if they truely believe themselves to possess this kind of knowledge.

    For example I am willing to bet that you have no medical degree or degree in psychology, nor have worked for years with these qualifications in order to study human behaviour with quantifiable results that suggest your advice had been beneficial. If you have a counselling qualification, this will still not qualify you to necessarily have a superior opinion in regards to dating, and I'm willing to bet you could get the equivalent of your advice in an Internet article or forum.
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    I would argue that I am more qualified to do your job based on your 'experience'. Except I would never do that, would prefer a real job or to help people through legitimate means.
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    (Original post by AvaAdore)
    I would argue that I am more qualified to do your job based on your 'experience'. Except I would never do that, would prefer a real job or to help people through legitimate means.
    Could at least give him the chance to respond? Hopefully he can elaborate on what you said above.

    However, it doesn't mean that his job isn't real or legitimate. Quite a lot of relationship counsellors, seem to be qualified at what they do. It isn't a fake job. Charities like Relate and OnePlusOne rely on and train them quite a bit if I'm not mistaken.
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    (Original post by Advanced Subsidiary)
    However, it doesn't mean that his job isn't real or legitimate.
    I mean come on though.
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    (Original post by tony_leas)
    socialising is haram, not getting your 86 virgins.
    socialising is not haram! If it was you are now a sinner!
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    (Original post by queen-bee)
    when is it the right time or how do you it's right when you want to move from that 'date' transition to a girlfriend/boyfriend thing?
    There are no cut and dry ‘right and wrongs’ when it comes to relationships as they’re subject to the nature of the individuals, their unique connection, and the context within which these elements sit. It's more useful to judge case by case, but with reference to related social learning

    Personally I’m of the old school, so I would tend toward favouring the male taking the lead on this transition, and the female exercising patience and maintaining the sense (however illusory) of a hint of continued ‘chase’ (without being false)

    In an ideal world the male will feel lucky to have the female on his arm (and vice versa) and will go to some lengths to ‘secure’ her (particularly if she is somewhat 'in demand') – including making explicit efforts to communicate that he wishes to go steady/’be official’. Quite when, should not be arbitrary

    Also, in your opinion, what makes for a high quality, long lasting relationship?
    For me the main ingredients are, on the part of all concerned, healthy:

    • Self esteem

    • Communication

    • Attraction/Intimacy

    • Trust/Respect/Compromise

    • Investment
    (including friends/family)

    • Power dynamic (not necessarily ‘equal’ power but ‘a good fit’ for all concerned)

    (Original post by the bear)
    should i play it safe and use Factor 50 this afternoon?
    Does the bear have a picnic date? :daydreaming:

    Spoiler:
    Show
    Sorry, saw this a bit late - caught the sun a bit myself today!

    (Original post by Bham369)
    I just realised that my boyfriend asked my friend out .. we broke up then he asked her. When she said no he came back to me! So dump or stay?
    I would ask yourself whether you sense he was deceitful about the reason for breaking up. Perhaps you should talk to him about it and encourage him to open up and be straight with you. Then you’ll be in a better position to make an informed choice going forward

    (Original post by mmmmmmmmmmmmm)
    Dump. You're muslim. Stay away from haram relationships
    Ultimately it's for her parents to guide her in such matters. Whilst I understand that you may be trying to preserve her religious/ethno-cultural 'dignitity' and/or spiritual/personal welfare, and I too would urge caution were I aware of potential related conflict (psychological or otherwise), this is a UK website and people in this land of ours are free (Amen) to have whatever relationships they like within the law (by which I mean British law, not Sharia)
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    (Original post by Foo.mp3)
    There are no cut and dry ‘right and wrongs’ when it comes to relationships as they’re subject to the nature of the individuals, their unique connection, and the context within which these elements sit. It's more useful to judge case by case, but with reference to related social learning

    Personally I’m of the old school, so I would tend toward favouring the male taking the lead on this transition, and the female exercising patience and maintaining the sense (however illusory) of a hint of continued ‘chase’ (without being false)

    In an ideal world the male will feel lucky to have the female on his arm (and vice versa) and will go to some lengths to ‘secure’ her (particularly if she is somewhat 'in demand' – including making explicit efforts to communicate that he wishes to go steady/’be official’. Quite when, should not be arbitrary

    For me the main ingredients are, on the part of all concerned, healthy:

    • Self esteem

    • Communication

    • Attraction/Intimacy

    • Trust/Respect/Compromise

    • Investment (including friends/family)

    • Power dynamic (not necessarily ‘equal’ power but ‘a good fit’ for all concerned)

    Does the bear have a picnic date? :daydreaming:
    Spoiler:
    Show
    Sorry, saw this a bit late - caught the sun a bit myself today!
    I would ask yourself whether you sense he was deceitful about the reason for breaking up. Perhaps you should talk to him about it and encourage him to open up and be straight with you. Then you’ll be in a better position to make an informed choice going forward

    Ultimately it's for her parents to guide her in such matters. Whilst I understand that you may be trying to preserve her religious/ethno-cultural 'dignitity' and/or spiritual/personal welfare, this is a UK website and people in this land of ours are free (Amen) to have whatever relationships they like within the law (by which I mean British law, not Sharia)
    Thanks
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    Agreed?
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    (Original post by cambio wechsel)
    Did you actually report the 40 or so people who wrote only "lol"? But that was good fun
    I'm afraid so. I don't mind people earnestly questioning to what extent I feel qualified to comment on these matters but I won't have non constructive posts/thread derailing/outright trolling, sorry. If people want to poke fun, that's cool, but I would just ask that they please keep it within the rules and to the appropriate thread if not serious/strictly on topic

    (Original post by Liquid Harvest)
    What are your qualifications for this role?
    (Original post by AvaAdore)
    I too would like to know what qualifications you have for this
    In terms of certificated qualifications, I haven’t gained particular accreditation as yet (as noted in the OP), although I have completed certain related training courses e.g. CBT/NLP (3 days) MBSR/MBCT (8 weeks) and have plenty of experience helping others in these areas (see OP for reference), with pretty decent feedback/approval rating, and 100% client satisfaction regarding the humble amount of private/professional work I’ve done to date

    (Original post by Josb)
    How much money do you make?
    Not much, not really in it for the money. My fees across all personal services are presently £25 ph, or £20 ph for students, which is what I charged when I was tutoring, back in the day. I’m only just starting out on the road to counselling accreditation so I don’t anticipate I’ll earn very much more than that in the near future, but that’s cool, it’s work that suits me better than most alternatives for a whole host of reasons

    (Original post by AvaAdore)
    I am willing to bet that you have no medical degree or degree in psychology
    Indeed I do not, although I do have a fair bit of non-standard knowledge relating to behavioural psychology and certain areas of medicine/psychology

    nor worked for years with these qualifications in order to study human behaviour with quantifiable results that suggest your advice had been beneficial
    Few dating coaches/counsellors ever compile objective/verifiable efficacy data, although naturally those who do are to be applauded for their investment and transparency. Early days for me but anecdotally my clients are certainly seeing benefits as a result of my involvement, which is encouraging!

    If you have a counselling qualification, this will still not qualify you to necessarily have a superior opinion in regards to dating
    Agreed

    I'm willing to bet you could get the equivalent of your advice in an Internet article or forum
    A lot of it, for sure – an important part of my function is as a reviewer (reviewing a lot of online information and picking out tried and tested take home messages). I do come up with the odd personal insight but I certainly never claimed to have reinvented the wheel!
 
 
 
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