Jennifer Love Hewitt Dishes Dating Advice in 'The Day I Shot Cupid'
In her new book, the 'Ghost Whisperer' star tackles the dos and don'ts of online flirting, setting boundaries, and healthy romance.
Love Unplugged: The Pitfalls of Online Romance continued...
Amen, Sister, says psychotherapist and relationship expert Tina
Tessina, PhD, LMFT. "Texting can become your entire relationship. Is that what
you really want?" she asks. Tessina, author of The Unofficial Guide to
Dating Again and The 10 Smartest Decisions a Woman Can Make Before
40, says that, for some couples, the option to text, Facebook, and Skype
each other has its advantages -- but you have to be a couple first.
Instead of all the gadgetry, focus on the face-to-face
relationship. "You can't force it, but it's a red flag if he won't see you in
person," Tessina says. "Be really careful not to let the relationship become
all instant messaging and Facebook and email. It's a pretend relationship
unless there's real face-to-face stuff going on -- and not just booty
Another downside of the online age: It can make you paranoid.
Tessina says there's nothing wrong with Googling the guy you've just started
dating to get the inside scoop. (Is he telling the truth about that hot
multimedia company he founded?) But you need to practice discipline in using
all the technology tools at your fingertips.
"It used to be you'd go home from a date and, if you were
excited to see the guy again, you had to resist calling him too soon," Hewitt
says. "Now it's not just 'I won't call.' It's 'I won't text, I won't check his
Facebook status or send him a Facebook message, I won't check his Twitter
feed.' It's too much. Seriously, technology has messed dating up royally."
Knowing When to Leave a Relationship
Perhaps the worst mistake women make, Hewitt says, is getting
caught up in a fantasy. "Reality is so important. It's not as much fun and
doesn't feel nearly as good, but fantasy isn't going to take you anyplace
Tessina says Hewitt's advice is on the mark. "We're really good
at talking ourselves into wanting what we have instead of waiting for what we
deserve," she says. "One good way to get out of that: Get this person around
your friends. They won't have the investment you have, so they can see more
clearly, and they'll tell you if he doesn't seem right to them somehow."
Hewitt admits that she herself has often made the love-life
mistake of not knowing when to get out. "When it's not right, you feel it. You
know it. Not enough people -- women in particular -- trust their gut. The only
person you hurt by staying in a relationship that's over is you," she says.
"That's when you really have to say, 'Life is short. Do I want to spend it
unhappy, or do I want to spend it full and happy, even if that means looking at
the riches in my life not as the man next to me, but my girlfriends, my home,
This is not to say that Jennifer Love Hewitt doesn't still
believe in romance. You can hear the smile in her voice when she talks about
one of her most memorable dates. "I think the best dates are the ones that go
all over the place. One time I went and ended up cleaning the Plaza Hotel at
three in the morning. Really! It sounded like a fun, goofy, romantic comedy
thing to do. We went in and I was like, 'Hi, can I vacuum?' We had a great
conversation while we were doing something silly. So if you're ever at the
Plaza Hotel, check out how clean the ballrooms are!"