Forgive, Forget or Flame Out?

They cheated. Or maybe they cheated. They want forgiveness. They want you to trust them again. Should you forgive, forget or flame out? As the great Beyoncé asks, “What’s worse, looking crazy or jealous?” (What’s best: Creating killer music. But that’s another story.)

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The truth is, there is no single right answer when it comes to forgiving betrayal. Some people work through it. Some can’t. The only universality is that it hurts like hell – and living in a fog of suspicion is toxic.

One Jyst user posted: “I found my husband had been calling and texting a woman from work.  I confronted him and he promised to stop but I still get the urge to put a spying app on his phone. Is that bad?” Once again, we turn to the Bible of Bey (yeah, we’ll admit it, we’re obsessed).  “You can taste dishonesty, it’s all over your breath as you pass it off so cavalier…My lonely ear/Pressed against the walls of your world.”

Other a Jysters wonder how to trust  again after  their SO admits to an affair and begs forgiveness. Is two years of a relationship worth one lapse? Is ten? The math is different for everyone.

The Jyst: Users all agree that if you are involved with a chronic cheater, you should leave. Immediately. But decisions are split (life and love are complicated, after all) when it comes to a single lapse. What do you think?  Let us know on Jyst.

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The New Break-Up Math

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Dating apps have made it easy to find a mate (or at least a hook-up) in the time it takes to swipe right. (Results definitely not guaranteed!) Social media has made it oh-so tempting to look up the one who got away and float the ‘just thinking of you’ trial balloon.

But if technology has made finding people easier, it’s made forgetting about them when it doesn’t work out incredibly difficult. Often it takes more willpower than a stint on The Biggest Loser to keep from cyber-stalking an ex.

In a recent Modern Love column for the New York Times, The Entire Netflix Story of Us, Tonya Malinowski writes that the pain of her break-up was made worse because she could not stop herself from keeping track of what her ex was screening (the curse of a shared password.) In The Facebook Break-Up, Penelope Green writes that the tech behometh is creating a “Compassion Squad” to make romantic ruptures easier.

We’re certainly not there yet, as Jyst users regularly attest. One user wrote: “Can’t stop checking up on my and his new gf on fb. How do you break the cycle?” Another posted: “Help! Can’t stop checking my ex’s Facebook and it gets me upset each time. I know it’s a pathetic. It’s a problem I can’t break.”

For Malonowski, the pain overwhelmed the curiosity of what her ex was up to and she eventually changed her Netflix password. For the rest of us (admit it, you’ve cyber-stalked an ex at least once) it’s not always so easy.

The Jyst: The irony of romance in the tech age is that finding someone can be faster than ever and getting over them can take longer than ever. What’s worked for you???

Refinery29: It’s Love!

We couldn’t be more excited by the rave in Refinery29! 

I Tried A Relationship Coaching App
Jyst
: The Dating Decoder

First, I tried Jyst, which I came across by word of mouth. Jyst is a crowdsourced, anonymous dating advice app made for and by women. It’s helpful, empowering, and fun to use (whether you’re in a serious relationship, casually dating, or closed for business).
Jyst didn’t ask me to connect with Facebook — or for any personal information, for that matter. The app is grounded in anonymity. When you open it, the app lists different types of questions. After you click on one, it shows you the newest questions people have, along with the option to check out the most popular queries (i.e. the ones that have received the most feedback). And of course, you can post your own questions, too.

I hate to admit it, but I felt this awesome sense of superiority when handing out (solicited) advice. It was empowering thinking I knew the answers to strangers’ relationship problems. How could these women be asking questions that I could answer without thinking twice? If your partner cheated on you multiple times, sorry, but that’s a deal-breaker. Isn’t that obvious? Or is it just obvious to me, since my own emotions aren’t on the line?

But in posing my own questions, my feelings from before — knowing in my core that I was helping someone with a seemingly obvious relationship problem — also helped. I found myself in what truly felt like a safe space. I could anonymously seek out advice, and also give out my own to others. Not only did I find it personally helpful, but I also felt good about — and confident in — my responses to a strangers’ dating dilemma.

by Bianca Heyward

Why Do Celebrities Play Such A Big Part In Our Imagination?

By Dave Singleton

Author of CRUSH: Writers Reflect on Love, Longing and the Lasting Power of Their First Celebrity Crush, now available in bookstores and online.

I have a theory that celebrities are just characters in my head. At any moment driving to work or walking down the street, I think about the people in my life. The ones I know glide alongside the celebrities in a constant, mental kaleidoscope. In my mind, my mother, Princess Diana, Hillary and Bill, my brother Bruce, my book editor, George Clooney and the entire casts of Ocean’s 11, 12, and 13, Tom Cruise, close friends like Bobbi and Gail, and Channing Tatum are all characters chaotically intersecting in the running drama I call my life.

Celebrities are both our intimate daily companions and as distant as the heavens above. It’s hard to know just how to think of them.

Based on how much time I spend immersed in media, can my mind always distinguish who’s real from unreal? I wonder.

Of course, the mind distinguishes between whom we know and whom we merely know of. Otherwise, we’d technically qualify as schizophrenics. But can emotions always make a distinction if, over time, you spend as much time on the unreal as the real?

Maybe things have changed somewhat since life in the Pleistocene era, but our neural hardwiring hasn’t. On some deeper level, we may think NBC’s “Friends” really are our friends. I’m not above admitting I’ve pictured myself as a seventh wheel sitting next to Rachel and Monica on the tattered sofa at Central Perk. More than once.

A few years ago, when I ran into Courtney Cox at Marix Tex Mex restaurant in West Hollywood, I waved instinctively. Who hasn’t had a celebrity sighting, mistaking a local newscaster, say, for a compadre?

If, like me, you spent time pouring over teen and celebrity magazines when you were a preteen, and arguably at your most impressionable, you know what I am talking about. You were alone. You felt vulnerable. No one understood you. Except for David Cassidy. Or Sandra Bullock. Or Jared Leto.

In one episode of the cartoon show “King of the Hill,” a character meets the late former Texas Governor Ann Richards. “You probably know me,” he says. “I’ve seen you on TV.”

He’s right.

*****

Thoughts? Talk about your first celebrity crush on Jyst.

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Buy CRUSH.

Read more of Dave’s work at his website.

Follow him on Twitter @DCDaveSingleton

 

 

 

The Surprising Thing Women Still Fear

A growing number of online dating sites are attempting to give women more control over what has historically been a man’s game: Making the first move. The shift is apparant IRL as well – with women encouraging each other to ‘go for what you want.’  Nevertheless, when, how, and if to ask a guy out is the most common question on Jyst this week.

From texting to snapchatting to  friending, there are more ways than ever to make the first move. But changing deeply ingrained behavior and expectations can be fraught, according to Jyst users. The proliferation of ways to communicate had made it both easier to reach out (no face time!) and more confusing. Some posts:  “I really want to message him but I don’t know if that’s weird.”  “We’ve been hanging out for a while now. Is it okay for me to suggest plans?” “Can girls DM guys?”

The Jyst community always answers Yes, it’s equal time.  But the “Can I?” questions keep coming.

The Jyst: It is apparantly easier for many women to ask for a raise than to ask a guy out. Do you think this will ever change?

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The Upside of App Anonymity

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News headlines are justifiably concerned with the risks that anonymity can present, from very real physical danger to the snarkiness and bullying that some apps devolve into as people use avatars to cloak their worst behavior. At its best, though, anonymity and crowdsourcing can allow people to share problems they might not otherwise feel open to discussing, especially when it comes to personal relationships, and realize they are not alone. With such rapid changes in both how we communicate, we all have more questions that ever. Crowdsourcing can be especially useful in situations where friends might tell you what they think you want to hear rather than offer objective advice.

When we launched Jyst, we were well aware of the dangers of both anonymity and crowdsourcing and put safety measures in place. As the community grows every day though, what has been most gratifying to see is the empathy and supportive nature of the conversations bubbling up. Is this because Jyst is a safe zone created by women for women to share relationship dilemmas? Are women, given the right environment, inherently more supportive of each other? It’s hard to tell, in part because there are still so few apps that grew out of uniquely female behavior. Admittedly, there are generalizations inherent to this argument, but if Jyst is an example, the answer appears to be yes. There has been an overwhelming display of empathy and kindness, a lack of judginess and absence of put-downs, proving that anonymity does not have to lead to animus; that personal questions do not have to lead to put-downs.

The Jyst: The power of technology to unite and empower, to prove that no matter how far apart, we do not have to feel alone, is the best of both anonymity and crowdsourcing. We look forward to seeing more of it.

Mars and Venus Go Mobile

For time immemorial, women have complained that the men in their lives are not communicative enough. (You’ve heard the expression, “If men could talk, oh the things they would say!”) Gross generalization? Sure. Mostly true? If the hundreds of women who have written/asked/pleaded about this on Jyst are a barometer, Yes. Not to go all Mars/Venus on you, but it might just be that there are inherent differences in the amount and type of communication men and women need. And texting has only made the situation (much) worse.

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There is a running theme on Jyst: Once a guy feels comfortable in a relationship, he doesn’t text as often or answer as quickly. In fairness to guys, there is a bit of mobile madness going on. ”He hasn’t answered my text in four hours!” “He takes a couples of hours to reply. Is he taking me for granted?” To which many Jysters replied, Slow down, sister. (Though we all commiserated.)

Of course, at times slow or no texts truly are a barometer of what’s going on. “Recently his texts have been getting shorter and some days he won’t respond at all. Am I being ignored on purpose?” Most on Jyst voted yes. But just as often, the only thing it indicates is that guys operate in a different communication time zone.

The Jyst: Guys, text a bit more! (Trust us, you will be rewarded!) Women, don’t get too hung up on counting the minutes before he replies. (Besides, that’s why you have friends – they text back!)

What do you think: Is texting helping us stay connected or giving us even more reasons to feel anxious?