Everything is just a little (or a lot) different in Alaska -- even dating. But in the end, love is love and drama is drama. Wanda and Wayne are always surfing the Web following dating and relationship trends to help our readers, as well as keeping up with TMZ scandals and fantasy football stats, respectively. Here are a few topics that are trending in W&W's world wide Web of relationships.
Susie Moore, a twice-married writer for Marie Claire, recently shared some of the lessons she learned from her first marriage that are helping her have a successful second go-around. She provided a list of nine things every engaged couple should talk about before making it official. Talking topics include money, children, workload, family, elderly parents, sexual expectations, deal breakers and more total-not-awkward-at-all convos. Here's the Wayne and Wanda take on it.
You have to actually establish real communication channels with your potential partner before you can truly get into these conversations. And as we read in our column just about every week, most relationship problems for young couples (and more than a few older couples as well) start and end at communication. So talk to your mate! Some conversations may be uncomfortable (Hosting the parents! Sexual expectations!) but good communication builds a stronger relationship, or at least saves you months of your life by giving you the clarity that this relationship isn't going to work out.
Some issues can wait until post-proposal. For example, deciding whether to house elderly in-laws can be debated after you've decided to spend your own lives together. But many of these topics are things you should sort out well before you put a ring on it. Case in point: whether to have children. There's a reason this doozy is one of the very first data points on a person's Match.com profile. Whether you have kids, want kids or crave the childless life is something a couple should sort out well before one pops the question, because a lack of consensus on this is a real relationship killer. And before you drop to one knee -- or gratefully accept the proposal -- you should definitely understand your partner's life priorities and goals.
And for those really unhappy married couples, here's some additional inspiration to start working things out: Cheating costs a lot of money! MSN Money reports that an average six-month affair costs nearly $2,700. Now, that's a lot of by-the-hour hotel rooms!
$2,700 over six months breaks down to about $450 a month, or just $112.50 a week. Sounds kind of cheap to me. By Alaska standards, that will barely buy dinner and drinks at Club Paris. Forget a hotel room. On that kind of budget, martinis and suites give way to dollar beers at Koots, followed by some seedy motel on Spenard. Ew.
I don't necessarily understand or respect cheaters but I guess I'm happy that these philandering folks are at least boosting the local economy while they're undermining their relationships. Hey, if you're that miserable, why don't you be an adult about it and direct that money to a divorce lawyer? Then you can spend your money and time on whoever the heck you want.
There's been some buzz on the Internet about whether having a television on helps or hurts a couple's sex life. Do you believe the "on" switch is a turn on?
So you're saying I can watch SportsCenter highlights while rounding third base? Sign me up! I'm guessing these couples are either watching some really racy shows or some incredibly boring shows. Or maybe they have kids in the next room and are just trying to use some white noise to drown out their fun. Hey, if your sex life is happy and healthy, don't change the channel!
In my own past experience, having a TV in the bedroom only resulted in my then-boyfriend watching countless hours of Adult Swim on Comedy Central. Nielsen research says adults spend 35 hours a week on average watching TV. How many hours do you spend having sex? I'm guessing not that many. Seriously, why focus on the boob tube instead of, you know, actual boobs? Leave the TV out.
Want to respond to a recent column, point out a dating trend, or ask Wanda and Wayne for wisdom regarding your love life? Give them a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org.