Intensity can make love hot and steamy, but mistaking drama for passion is a surefire way to get burned. To see if you confuse the two, circle the response that sounds most like you in each of the following scenarios:
1. The mates you tend to attract could best be described as:
a. Caught in a bind-perennially between jobs, living somewhere temporarily or in a constant tug-of-war with a baby mama.
b. Surviving-he has a job that allows him to take care of himself with few frills.
c. Living well-he’s satisfied with his career, knows who he is, keeps a prudent reserve in the bank and even has money to send a special woman flowers.
2. Just as your honey steps out, his cell phone rings. The display says “Nancy” and gives a number. You:
a. Jot it down, call later and ask if he’s there.
b. Work the name Nancy into the conversation later and see how he reacts.
c. Let it go. Nancy could be anybody. If there’s something fishy, you’ll figure it out soon enough.
3. It’s Thursday. You haven’t heard from him since Tuesday, and now you think:
a. I wonder if he met somebody else.
b. I refuse to call him. I’m going to wait for him to call me.
c. Oh, wow, has it been two days?
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4. You make small talk with the man in the seat next to you. When you get off the plane, your honey yanks the luggage off the carousel, grumbling because you were “flirting” with the man. You think:
a. Wow, he must really be crazy about me.
b. Was I flirting? I don’t think I was flirting. Hmmm, was I flirting?
c. I may have to fly solo, because a man with a trunkload of insecurities can only hold me down.
5. You fix a special dinner for him and he doesn’t show up-again. When you finally catch up with him, he says, “I fell asleep.” You say:
a. “Poor thing, you must be working too hard.”
b. “From now on, we’re ordering takeout.”
c. “Your plate may be too full for a relationship with me.”
6. You’re starting to see a pattern. After an ugly fight you always have the most amazing sex. You think:
a. That was so hot! We must be destined for each other.
b. Obviously we’ve got plenty of steam, but I wish we didn’t have to throw small appliances to get all heated up.
c. This series is canceled. I get enough drama watching The Sopranos.
How Did You Score? Assign three points for each a answer, two points for each b and one point for each c. Check your total against the following profiles.
Continue to see your score
Ms. Firecracker (15 to 18 points)
If a relationship is not intense, it seems boring to you. You’re addicted to the ups and downs of roller-coaster love, but you may be causing yourself serious damage. To understand your behavior, ask yourself, Where did I learn this pattern? Drop the drama king and hold out for someone emotionally available and stable. At first it may seem a little flat, but over time picking the more predictable mate can lead to a love life in which you can get your needs met.
Ms. Low-grade Fever (10 to 14 points)
You sense when there’s a problem, but you don’t trust your feelings. If you or your mate does something that troubles you, explore why. Gently yet honestly share your concerns. If you can talk it through and find a way to handle matters harmoniously, then you may have a keeper. But don’t hurt yourself by trying to hold on to a person or a situation that could blow at any minute.
Ms. Cool (and Conscious) Customer (6 to 9 points)
You have established standards and boundaries, and you know what’s good for you and what’s gotta go. You recognize that a person who really cares for you will find a way to handle his negative feelings without dragging you into a downward spiral of complaints and arguments. You love yourself and insist that everyone in your sphere treat you with the same high regard. That’s the prerequisite for passion.