What French Women Know About Love
Wish you could turn your relationship into a French romance? Let the author of What French Women Know About Love, Sex and Other Matters of the Heart and Mind help! The secret of the French may have nothing to do with their romantic city of Paris, gourmet food and wine or glamorous fashion. "What they really know is a whole different mindset about love," says Debra Ollivier who lived in Paris for a decade before writing her new book. "They look at love as a range of possibilities - and that's very liberating!"
She explains that the notion of "happily ever after" is not in their vocabulary. "They are not goal oriented. For them, it's really the journey and not the destination, and if a relationship doesn't end in marriage, it's not a failure," she says. "They are truly in the moment, they are in the experience and not the outcome. They don't go out with a guy saying, 'Is he my soul mate? Is he my future husband? Is he my boyfriend?' That doesn't come into the picture." And, getting rid of that pressure to find "the one" could ultimately make you happier and end up improving your romantic life, according to Debra. "You bring that well being into your relationships with men!"
How would she apply this approach to American dating dilemmas? Debra offers advice to three love-challenged viewers!
I was dating a guy and called it off after nitpicking about his appearance, and now wonder if that was a mistake. What would a French woman do? "They don't look for the perfect guy - 'Mr. Right' - and so on. They do embrace imperfections, quirkiness, idiosyncrasies. They don't care if other people don't think their guy is attractive either, so I think that what a French woman would have done differently is she would have probably tried to just embrace those imperfections ... Think out of the box!"
I've been married for three months, and my husband recently wanted to stay in bed for the morning but I said we have too much to get done. But I don't want to lose that spark! What would a French woman have done? "A French woman would have definitely said let the dishes stay in the sink and the kids don't have to finish the homework, and she would have gone for the pleasure. I think one thing that we grow up with is this notion that you have to get everything done, multi-task, and be all things to all people and have a perfectly balanced life at all times, which is really impossible. French women understand that and they really go primarily for pleasure and the passion and what passion brings to them, even if that means that things are not going to get done."
I dated a guy a while back and things were going well, pretty early on I started to imagine my name with his last name, and I really liked the sound of it! Unfortunately, we broke up. How do you avoid making future plans when you are in a relationship? "French women would not go into a relationship looking at the relationship ending in marriage; that from the get-go is different ... If you go into love with romanticism, but also a little realism, then you're not as heartbroken and that is something that I think French women do a little differently."
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