Master Matchmaker Steve Ward is back for a third season of Tough Love, and this time he’s traveled south to Miami where the heat is definitely on. Steve will be giving us his thoughts on every episode, and he has plenty to say about the season premiere where we met the new crop of women, each one with an issue all her own.
Episode one! Can you tell me what your first impression was of each of the ladies when you met them?
Do you want to go one by one? I do remember them all, I actually memorized them alphabetically.
Oh, well then let’s go in alphabetical order.
Alright, we will start with Avonte. She was very stubborn, I mean she’s in her late 30’s, she was in a serious relationship with a married man for almost a decade, and she came into boot camp rationalizing it, thinking that she wasn’t the problem, everyone else was the problem. I think she was very easily impressionable and so she fell for what I consider to be a bunch of bulls— and some guy led her to believe that because his religion allowed him to live a polygamous lifestyle that it was okay for her to be his long term girlfriend while he was married to another woman.
It is very difficult to get her out of that way of thinking that a lot of the time trying to get her to admit that it was wrong and that there was no excuse for living in that kind of lifestyle. So once I got through that we started making a lot of progress.
Next would be Brigette.
Alright so Brigette was supposed to be in season one but she backed out at the last second because she was worried about losing her job. And you know here we are two years later, and she was in a worse position than she was before season one.
So what made her situation different?
She went out with about 40 plus guys when we first cast her for the show and she still had no luck. So I mean she was just terrible.
Where was she looking? Was she doing online dating?
Yep, she was doing everything, she was meeting guys everywhere. She’d meet them in bars, meet them online, she’d try to get her friend to set her up. But she was so neurotic, and would stress out about the opportunity so much that she would ruin it before it ever had a chance to get started. So she’s that girl that thinks way too much about it and creates an unnecessary amount of pressure which is going to turn off any guy. She needed to realize that you know, you have to get back to basics and enjoy dating and enjoy life and focus on enjoying yourself and not so much about your long term goals when you’re dating. But once you start dating somebody that you realize isn’t a good fit for you term long term, then you got to be smart about it, do what’s best and move on, and not try to make it work with somebody just because they like you but they are wrong for you.
How do you pick a match for someone for her?
That’s the funny thing, I came up with a concept for the first impressions, I called it the elevator pitch. Where basically I had the women walk through a lobby of men without saying anything to them and even the men that were attracted to the women were instructed to follow them into the elevator. So she was followed into the elevator by this guy, and a few other guys and she happened to pick this guy and no one else, so it was something that happened. I mean I put the guy at the party but, they met on their own. It’s kinda how matchmaking works.
In this exercise we invited fifty men, just like in the first scene and the girls walk into the bar and they walk by a bar full of guys and there’s only like seven or eight guys meanwhile they are sitting there and I tell them that these aren’t the only guys looking at you and they look and up and see 50 guys in the rafters and that was just meant to illustrate how usually people are looking at you and you don’t realize it. And you have to be mindful of what your appearance is, and the signals that you are sending, even though you are not aware of somebody looking at you.
Let’s talk about Chasity.
Chasity is the youngest of the bunch, and clearly the most immature, she shows up with this baby fever and I don’t think she has the first clue what it would take to be a mother. So because of that she is in a point where she needs to start coming to grips with reality, basically I was pointing out the fact that, I don’t really understand how you expect to be a mother to a newborn child while being a go-go dancer. So let alone the toll that having a child is going to have on your body, and the fact that she has baby fever which is a turnoff to guys in and of itself, I was more concerned about how unrealistic she was, like she really expects to be a mom and have a stay at home lifestyle and be there for her child and yet she wanted to be a sexy go-go dancer.
What they tend to do is look for a type of person that doesn’t exist. I get this all the time, someone tells me, I want the bad boy a guy with an edge, take charge, but he’s got to be sweet and sensitive, I’m like okay, you’re talking out of both sides of your mouth. You’re not going to get a guy that’s a bad boy, edgy take charge assertive guy, who’s sensitive and cries at The Notebook. It ain’t happening, and if you are going to sit there and cut yourself short because you meet a guy that’s got the edge but isn’t sensitive enough, or you meet a guy that’s too sensitive but doesn’t have enough edge, you’re going to be single the rest of your life. And that’s what women do and I get a kick out of it, it’s hilarious to me. Guys do it too though, you know guys are like oh I want a girl that’s drop dead gorgeous, and a brain surgeon and makes $250,000 a year and wants to be a stay at home mom. Okay, that makes a lot of sense.
In the case of Leilani, it’s almost like she doesn’t realize that the name of the show is Tough Love. She’s so upset by what you say, how do you get it in their head, “You signed up for this kind of criticism”?
I scream it! I scream it in their face. I’m like what do you think you signed up for? You know what’s so funny? Jane never even saw the show. How great is that? Came to the show and never even saw it before. She had a breakdown, she was like “I wasn’t ready for this.” Should have read the fine print Jane! But Leilani’s scenario, Leilani is the way she is because she is so beautiful.
Is she just disconnected from reality because of that?
Come on can you point out one of these girls that isn’t disconnected from reality, why do you think they’re on the show? Women don’t get it, looks fade, they fade fast, you know it happens, it’s called life, get over it. I’m like listen Leilani you better find something for a guy to like about you then just your looks because that’s going to fade fast. You need to start bringing out your character. You need to start bringing out personality, you need to start bringing out sense of humor, you need to start showing some virtue, give a guy a reason to want to be with you long term, that you’re not just going to be a plaything for a few years and then they are going to get bored and move on like every other guy that’s been in your life. Christine and Leilani are both caught up on looks, but Christine is more self-conscious about her own looks than her partner’s. When it comes to Leilani, I think she’s just so used to the pageant world, and the same thing with Christine, everything is based on how you look, your appearance and what you project to others. So I think it’s very difficult for her to demonstrate her substance, I think that’s the case for most pageant women to do that.
Christine’s problem is that Christine was fat. She was a Mrs. Iowa, not a Miss Iowa, it’s a different competition, she wasn’t exactly competing in the Miss Universe pageant like Leilani was. Because she was in that position and she fluctuated so much in weight and she realized how much more attention she received and things like that, when she’s at her best and at a weight she’s more comfortable with, that’s why she’s more concerned with looking the best that she can.
Leilani isn’t even that concerned about her appearance per se, she’s less maintenance that Christine, it’s that Leilani puts more of an emphasis on appearance than Christine. Christine values character more than Leilani does.
Moving on to Claudia, she’s an actress but she swore she wasn’t acting for you and in this scenario, were you ever suspicious that she was acting though?
Um, yes. I think Claudia is trying to project the image that she believes all men are attracted to. What’s interesting is that she’s really a traditional kind of mom and the kind of woman who, when she’s not out, she’s got her hair back in a ponytail and in comfortable clothes, she’s not always dialing herself up, but when she’s in that mode, she turns on a character of this sultry, sexy, seductive woman when it comes to men. I try to work on her to project that more vulnerable side, so there’s an opportunity for a guy to connect with you. I think she needed to learn that.
You said Jane considers herself mean and knows it, so why does she get so upset when you call her out on it?
She didn’t know what the show was about. She had never seen the show before, she just wanted to get on TV. Here’s the problem, all these girls want to be on TV. Big deal. That’s not why you’re here. She comes in with this attitude “I’m fierce, I’m fabulous,” I told her “You’re a pretty girl whose personality is so revolting that you look ugly.” That’s a problem.
And last up is Michelle.
She looks for all these qualities in a man that doesn’t exist. You know in the teaser where she says to me “How dare you?” Oh, I dare. She has a sister with all sorts of problems, overweight, not good in school, and meanwhile Michelle was prom queen, cheerleader, and always did well in school, and she was complaining to me that her mom favored her sister and gave her sister more attention than her. I was like, I don’t know Michelle, maybe because your life was so much easier than hers that your parents figured they didn’t have to give you as much attention that she requires? Get over it! Talk about the need for attention. You’re beautiful, you’re intelligent, you have no need to feel sorry for yourself.
Out of the women on this season, who would you say had the most potential and was the most promising?
I would say Brigette is the one I had the most hope for.
We’ll have to wait until this season unfolds to chat more about that!