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I am a Licensed Psychologist, Lesbian Matchmaker, and Renowned Relationship Expert. Ask Me Anything.

Frankie Bashan
Feb 11, 2018

Online Dating doesn't work anymore. The people you want to meet are not spending their time swiping and browsing - they're outside, living their lives. Don't you want to be part of that? App Dating Culture is all about instant gratification, unrealistic ideals and lack of chemistry. As a Psychologist with over 16 years of counseling couples, advising matchmaking clients and hosting dating events for both gay & straight individuals, I know what works in finding the person of your dreams. Don't be shy, ask me any topic on modern dating in the digital age, including how to pick up that attractive person or how to keep the spark alive in a long-term relationship.

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As a lesbian matchmaker, what issues have you seen the lesbian couples face that many people may be unaware of?

Feb 18, 12:01AM EST0

What's the difference between a licensed counselor and licensed clinical psychologist when counseling a client?

Feb 17, 10:06PM EST0

What findings would be needed for you to conclude a patient is a sex addict?

Feb 16, 5:28PM EST0

What would you say your biggest challenge is with matchmaking?

Feb 15, 8:57PM EST0

What's your advice for someone looking to get back into the dating game? 

Feb 15, 2:07PM EST0

What works in finding the "right" person in the modern digital dating? What might still work online? 

Feb 15, 7:54AM EST0

Has online dating ever worked, since you say doesn’t anymore? Why/when did it stop?

Feb 13, 12:50PM EST0

Online dating use to be very effective.  Had we continued to be honest when representing ourselves in terms of what we're looking for and what we have to offer in addition to treating one another with kindness and respect, it would still be effective today. Unfortunately we started to inaccurately represent ourselves by posting outdated photos and writing inauthentic descriptions of ourselves that weren't adding up once the next step of meeting in person occured. I have heard counless stories of single men and women who were hopeful and excited about all the perceived potential of meeting the one through a dating app. It only takes a couple of disapointing experiences where you either show up for the date and the person doesn't look like their photo or sound like their narrative or you show up for the date and you both seemingly have a fantastic time, there's even talk about a second date that never actually happens because the person disapears into thin air. This person who who seemed to have a great connection with isn't responding to email or phone or text. These types of experiences completely undermine the success of dating apps. We can blame it on a few who early on started to spoil the space and these actions eventually over a good number of years have compunded having a great big impact on the online dating experience sadly.

Feb 13, 6:39PM EST0

What are your thoughts about same sex marriage/union? Are you married or would you ever consider getting married to your partner?

Feb 13, 10:32AM EST0

I think it's great that we can finally get married if we choose to do so! I was in a domestic partnship for 12 years. It was the closest thing to marriage back then but had we had the option for marriage we would have absolutely chosen it. 

Feb 13, 12:31PM EST0

If a gay/lesbian couple gets married in a state or city where it’s legal, is their marriage/union still valid and recognized even if they live in another state or city?

Feb 12, 8:21PM EST1

 As far as I know as of June 26, 2015, same-sex marriage was established in all 50 states as a result of the ruling of the Supreme Court of the United Stated in the landmark civil rights case of Obergefell vs. Hodges. 

Feb 13, 12:34PM EST0

I live in Oakland, Ca and wonder if you have any speed dating events scheduled.  I'm an active 67 yo.  One issue I've had with speed dating is that the events I've attended have often been held in noisy envionments where it is really a struggle to hear the other person.  I don't think this is just related to my age.  I go to a lot of meetups and am very social but find it often hard to get very far with women.  The main thing I notice is passivity, ambivalence, or women saying things like 'if it happens, it happens'.  I'm frustrated with my attempts to date women.  I am an attractive, adventurous, active woman with great attention and communication skills, but women never come after me.  I do reach out, but haven't been very successful.  I wish more women were half as assertive as men.  Ugh.  

Feb 12, 7:28PM EST0

Hi Kristina!

We have an event in San Francisco on February 22nd. Please join us! www.littlegaybook.com/sanfrancisco-active-40-65/ This venue happens to be on the quieter side but I can completely understand your experience. While we work hard to find venues that aren't loud, there are many different factors that go into selecting a venue. Rest assured we try hard to make it as comfortable as possible for folks and some venues are certainly louder than others. 

I can hear your frustration with women but it is such a blessing that you're not afraid to be BOLD and go for what you want. Can you imagine if you didn't feel as confident in yourself!? Then there really wouldn't be much action going on. It sounds like you have been given the gift of ease in connecting with people which is why you will be the person who mainly reaches out.

What I have noticed with women that fall within your age range is that they tend to become pretty comfortable with being alone. They have created the life they'be wanted for themselves and making any changes to what they've created feels hard and there's resistance as a result. I too see what you're describing and also feel frustrated as a matchmaker at times. But I do not allow this challenge to prevent me from working with older clients because there are always exceptions. I may have to interview 10 women before I find one that is flexible, not jaded and really wants a life partner even in her 60's, 70's or 80's. Stay positive and keep getting out there eventually you will find someone to share your beautiful life with! Good luck!

Feb 13, 12:44PM EST1

What’s the best way to deal with haters or those who discriminate against gay and lesbian couples?

Feb 12, 5:40PM EST0

Stand confidently and don't change the way you engage with your partner just to make others feel comfortable unless it puts you at risk or in danger. It's important that we not adjust the way we naturally would engage with our partners in front of others to avoid them feeling uncomfortable. The more we try and avoid the discomfort the slower the process of acceptance will happen. Just be yourself. 

Feb 12, 10:27PM EST0

What is the best and most decent way to ask someone if he or she is “safe” prior to getting intimate?

Feb 12, 10:08AM EST0

Great question! Be very matter of fact. It's not an emotional topic, it's about safety and being responsible. If you bring the topic up it reflects well on you and will make the other person feel safer being with you intimately. I would not just ask about safety, I would take it a step further and request that both of you get a recent test done and share the results with each other. This opportunity increased trust and intimacy which is the exact direction you want to be going with someone you're interested in any way. Good luck!

Feb 12, 12:57PM EST0

What are some very odd cases you have dealt with over those 16 years?

Feb 12, 2:34AM EST0

Odd feels a bit judgemental to me, I'd rather think of these case and individuals as more unique in nature :). I have worked with clients who have unique fetishes or desires that aren't mainstream leaving them feeling isolated, ashamed and lonely. I have worked with clients who are into the middle of their lives with very little intimate relationship experiences.  But I have to say, the majority of people I come across are struggling with similar issues around, fear of intimacy, abandonment

But I have to say, the majority of people I come across are struggling with similar issues around, fear of intimacy, abandonment and engulfment. And many struggle by allowing fear to dictate their lives instead of grabbing life by the throat and stepping right into it as if it's the last chance we've got. 

Feb 12, 12:54PM EST0

I'm from a large city, recently moved to a small mid west city. It's hard to meet people here. I have no idea how or where to look. It's not like LA.

Feb 12, 12:22AM EST0

That's tough Lacey! What I can tell you is that you can't sit around waiting to meet people which means you've got to get out there and start engaging with people locally. Find something that you're interested in learning more about or try something new that could develop into a hobby or interest that is social. For example, join a crossfit gym or a boot camp - they both tend to be more social and have a built in community that often does activities outside of the gym together, consider a cycling club or a hiking group. It's easiest to connect with new people around a similar interest. If you're less active think about an art class or a drumming club. If you literally can't find anything of interest in the area then you spearhead something on your own and invite others to join. Post the event on Meetup and Craigslist and make flyers. Post them all around town, create a buzz. Sometimes we have to be proactive in life to make stuff happen. This may be the perfect opportunity. Remember if you're looking for ways to connect with others I can promise you others who are similar to you are looking as well. Good luck!

Feb 12, 12:48PM EST0

Thanks, I'll try that

Feb 12, 1:10PM EST0

Hello dr Frankie, 

I'm so confused with this woman I'm dating. We've been dating since May but I've only seen her twice since than. She always has to work or she's tired or she has to be with her son. I don't know what to do  to see her more. When we talk on the phone she addresses us as a couple and says I'm her partner, but I don't get to see her as often as I like to.  When we first met we had an instant connection that I can't describe to you, I've never had this with anyone before. What do you think I should do ? Is she scared ? Cause when I mention I miss her and I'm thinking of her she disappears for a few days. 

Feb 11, 7:33PM EST0

Something similar just happened to me too. This girl confused the shit out of me; she was so hot and cold, but we had this undeniably crazy chemistry when we did get together. When I pressed her about her push-pull behavior the last time, she ran, telling me that she "just wasn't that into me." I was crushed. I'm hoping that your lady will be much more reasonable than this!

Feb 11, 8:56PM EST0
Show all 5 replies

While the App Dating Culture can be unrealistic at times, do you think that it’s still possible to find someone who you can spend the rest of your life with through an app?

Feb 11, 4:54PM EST0

Absolutely! One just has to understand when they enter into the dating app world that it can be rough. Visualize stepping into a suit of protection/armor so to speak . Set realistic expectations and expect to be ignored, ghosted, and disappointed throughout the process. If you go into it knowing that you'll be able to equipped to deal with the online dating app terrain. 

Feb 11, 6:02PM EST0

What are your thoughts about cheaters? Can they really change for the better? Have you seen couple getting through third party problems and being successful in the end?

Feb 11, 3:47PM EST0

Even the most honest and loyal people are still human and can find themselves in a situation of infidelity, none of us are immune to that possibility whether we're the cheater or the person cheated on. I have worked with plenty of couples who have worked through infidelity and I have worked with plenty of couples who haven't been able to repair the damage successfully. I am a firm believer that, if two people have

I am a firm believer that, if two people have love for each other, are committed to repairing the relationship and want to remain together they can work through it. Don't get me wrong, it's hard, really hard but it's certainly possible. They just both have to really want it. 

Feb 11, 5:23PM EST0

I was with this psychologist who told me not to tell anyone about my parents' murder-suicide for 30 years, recovering. She did a lot of other things that were damaging and I finally developed the courage to leave her 3 years ago because I realized it was not me, it was her, that she was a toxic person for me. She had me convinced that I needed her to survive and I was finally able to realize she was messed up, not me, so I left. I've made a good life for myself by how do I go about healing from the damage she did?

Feb 11, 3:28PM EST0

Now is the time to heal from that experience and let go. I recommend finding a therapist who you can actually build a trusting relationship with that has your best interest at heart. A therapist who is compassionate, supportive and boundaried. Unfortunately your previous therapist sounded unprofessional and unboundaried. It's probably safest to get connected with a therapist through a trusted referral. Good luck!

Feb 12, 4:03PM EST0

Thank you!

Feb 13, 3:59PM EST0

Dr Frankie, 

What is the resistance to long distance dating/ relationships( like even a 1hr drive away)?. It seems women are not willing to explore a certain distance outside their neighbourhood. 

Feb 11, 1:21PM EST0

As a matchmaker, I sometimes see this issue as well. I think life these days is so hectic and busy for most of us that it makes it hard for some to envision making the time to travel to and from to spend time with a partner. I think people also have a false sense that their perfect person is living in there backyard and that they therefore don't need to travel outside of their area for the one. Truth is we sometimes have to go outside of our area to find our person and if it's important enough to us we'll make the extra time to drive an hour away to be with someone we have a genuine connection with.  The long and the short of it is that you're not alone in this experience and that it is their loss if they're not willing to explore a long distance relationship. If you stick with your oppenness long enough someone will come around who is open just like you. 

Feb 11, 1:30PM EST0

What’s your matchmaking success rate like? Have you ever had couples ending up in marriage?

Feb 11, 12:38PM EST0

Our matchmaking success rate is 80% and many of our clients end up in marriage. I've been at this work for a long time. If it wasn't succcessful I would have chosen a different path by now. I absolutely love what I do and take great pride in the work. It's a gift that I'm so grateful for. 

Feb 11, 12:43PM EST0
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