Steve and JoAnn Ward Share Some ‘Tough Love’ With You!

You asked, they answered! We recently asked you, our readers, to submit your dating questions and get some expert advice from matchmaking masters Steve and JoAnn Ward. Well, just in time for the season premiere of VH1’s reality hit, Tough Love, Steve and JoAnn have the solutions for all of your dating dilemmas! Steve and JoAnn are heading to the Big Easy, New Orleans, for the fourth season of Tough Love (premiering Sunday night at 9pm), helping some single, sassy Southern belles find the men of their dreams – and after you read their advice, you’ll see that they’re more than qualified for the task!

“How long should you wait to call someone after your first date to make a follow-up date?”
JoAnn: Why wait, if the date went well and you’re interested, ask right then and there. “Would you like to get together again, or would you like me to give you a call in a couple days?”
Steve: There’s no reason to wait. If you really like someone, be direct. Let them know you’re interested and you want to see where it goes. Find out when they’re free next and try to accommodate them.

“I like this girl and we are friends and she is beautiful and has the greatest personality but I’m not the most attractive guy so should I ask her out anyway?”
JoAnn: Yes! Personality can far out way attraction. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, if you don’t ask, you’ll never know. Be sure your confidence is showing, don’t seem intimidated.

More Q&A… 

“I know it’s an old, slightly hacky question, but who should pay on a date? I make good money and don’t mind pitching in, especially when I know there’s not going to be another date (due to lack of chemistry or some other similar reason.) How persistent should I be in offering money for a date – or should I just let it go?”
JoAnn: It’s proper to offer to split the cost of the date, but not be too pushy about it.  Make the offer, if he accepts it, shell out your portion, if he gently insists on paying, let him pay.
Steve: Always offer. If he accepts, he’s not the right guy for you. If he suggests you leave the tip, don’t be necessarily offended but don’t expect him to be that into you either. If he wants to ‘go dutch’, he is NOT interested and nor should you be.

“I hate my boyfriend’s friends. I can’t figure out what ever attracted my boyfriend to these loud, rude men. I get dragged to sports bars and such with them and I hate every minute of it – and I’m afraid some of their bad habits will rub off on my man. I’m not sure what I should do or say!”
JoAnn: If you don’t like your boyfriend’s friends but the relationship is important to you, try to find something positive about those friends and focus on that. Try to find the good in them, if you can’t, you’re going to have to pretend.  Otherwise you are putting your boyfriend in a position of choosing to spend time with you and his friends separately, that will mean less time for the two of you. A man will love it if you fit in with the guys.  Plus, you need to trust that he has a mind of his own.

“Have the rules changed? What is the general number of dates that must pass before you can have sex and not be regarded as a slut? Is there such a number?”
JoAnn: When to have sex with a guy is a personal decision and depends on individual circumstances. No matter what, you shouldn’t sleep with a guy you want to take you seriously until you have established a foundation of respect, communication, and trust. Men instinctively want to pursue women, so don’t end the thrill of the hunt too prematurely. Generally, the end of a first date with someone you just met isn’t the right time to have sex, but restricting yourself to a timetable will impede the natural flow of the relationship.

“My boyfriend wants me to meet his parents – we’ve been going out for 2 weeks and I think he’s moving a little too fast. I don’t want to have to lie, but how can I get out of this?”
JoAnn: If you’re calling him your “boyfriend”, but you don’t know if you’re into him then don’t meet his parents and don’t refer to him as your boyfriend.  Clearly you’re not sure of your feelings for him yet, so be sure not to lead him on to thinking otherwise.  

“How can you tell if you are being played by a guy or if he is just wanting to take it really slow?”
Steve: Guys never want to take it slow. If they are distant they are probably seeing other women or not ‘that’ interested in you. If a guy likes you and wants a relationship with you, he will pursue you and it will be obvious.

“What do you do if the guy you are seeing only likes to have sex with you and never takes you out?”
Steve: You get a clue and face the reality. You have to assess the situation and decide if you’re satisfied with it or not. If not, and who would be, you exercise that bit of self-respect you have and LEAVE HIM.

“Should you have to pretend to be interested in a guy’s activities or hobbies when you first start out dating?”
Steve: You don’t have to be interested in what he’s interested in, but you have to be interested in him. Even if its something you would never do or know you won’t enjoy, it doesn’t hurt to ask him questions and find out why he likes it so much.

“I met this guy and he is pretty great – he’s handsome, has a great sense of humor and seems to be a “together” kind of guy. Sadly, he’s a horrible kisser. I dread the end of the night when we have to do the whole “good night kiss” thing. What can I do?”
Steve: Tell him softly and nicely. Don’t just say, “you’re a terrible kisser.” Grab him by the face and say, “here, relax, let me show you how I like to kiss.”

Want more sage romantic advice from Steve and JoAnn? Tune into the premiere of Tough Love: New Orleans Sunday night at 9pm EST on VH1! Can’t wait until Sunday? Check out a sneak preview at!