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The Matchmaking DUO Shares What Keeps Many Women Single And Tips For Navigating Dating Successfully
Dating

The Matchmaking DUO Shares What Keeps Many Women Single And Tips For Navigating Dating Successfully

One topic of conversation that I find myself in when talking with girlfriends is dating. Questions like, “Why is dating so hard? “Will I ever get married?” “Why am I still single?” usually comes up, and then it turns into a whole venting session with everyone sharing their dating woes. Honestly, it’s tiring. However, I can’t help but wonder why are so many of us in the same boat. After talking to the co-owners of Fisher Gilmore Matchmaking (FGM), the Matchmaking DUO, Kelli K. Fisher, and Tana C. Gilmore, I now understand some of the reasons why many of my good sistas are still single.

But first, let’s get into why Kelli and Tana are qualified to speak on dating and relationships. As two Black women who are in successful marriages, they have experienced the ups and downs that happen in many relationships, and they were able to overcome them. And as self-proclaim “heart hunters,” they are helping many Black singles find love through their matchmaking business.


Both women worked together in corporate but ended up making the transition into matchmaking after finding themselves constantly giving dating and relationship advice to others. Kelli, a dating coach, and Tana, a relationship coach, formed FGM and are now celebrating its 10-year anniversary. Their services included coaching and matchmaking, and they recently launched their Modern Dating Academy, which is a cost-effective membership. They have recruiters who they refer to as “love liaisons” whose mission is to find people and add them to their database for potential matchmaking. But how do you know if matchmaking is for you?

According to Kelli and Tana, there are a few reasons.

“A person should invest in a matchmaker when they have realized that they need some support, they need some help. When you want the home of your dreams, you hire a realtor, when you want something done, you hire a contractor. You hire professionals for every other area in your life,” Tana began. “When you want a specific job, you want a recruiter. We're heart hunters like we stated earlier, so [if] you're looking for something different, you're looking for something specific, why not hire a professional that does this every day, all day? This is what we do and what we do well.

“We're one of the most highly sought-after agencies in the country. So I think it's very important for you to invest in yourself, invest in your life, in your personal life as well. We do it all the time for so many other things, this is just as important, if not more important. This is your legacy. We're helping build your legacy.”

"I think it's very important for you to invest in yourself, invest in your life, in your personal life as well. We do it all the time for so many other things, this is just as important, if not more important. This is your legacy. We're helping build your legacy.”

During our interview, Kelli and Tana dished on the number one reason why many of us seem to be struggling in the dating world and some simple tips to overcome it.

Kelli Fisher (L) and Tana Gilmore (R).

Photo courtesy of Kelli Fisher and Tana Gilmore

What We Have Been Taught Vs. Reality

Kelli suggested that for many of us, our upbringing has influenced how we approach dating, which isn’t working in our favor. “I would say the biggest problem that I see now is just the difference between what we’ve been raised to do culturally and the times today in dating. So, when you think of culturally, you think of women are supposed to sit back. They’re supposed to not be too forward, they're supposed to, you know, not give too much attention. Let someone court you, that type of thing, but really the wave of dating now is where, you know, everybody can swipe left,” Kelli explained.

“They can swipe right, they can have another date, so if you don’t offer enough of an experience on a date, then you’re gone, or they’re gone, so you know it’s almost like you have to show more than we’re trained to do, so you have to get feedback. You have to have a fun experience. You have to give enough for someone to say, ‘Oooh, let me call this person back because I can’t wait to hear more,’ and that is the discrepancy I think a lot of times in where we are today with dating.”

Unrealistic Expectations

Another reason why many women may be single is because of unrealistic expectations. However, this also stems from what they saw and were taught growing up.

“I also think that their expectations are unrealistic sometimes about what’s out there and what they can command and what they can’t,” said Tana. “So, I think that that’s sometimes a problem when it comes to the matchmakers just having that reality check with them, and I think that we do that well because it comes from a soft space and a place. But we want to make sure and ensure that they know exactly what’s out here, exactly what to do when it’s in front of you, and just kinda help them progress forward because, again, unfortunately, our Black women don’t really have the relationship skill sets because we were never taught them.

“They don’t teach it in school, and it's not taught in the home. You don’t really see it to be a model sometimes, and then when you do, you don’t see the tough times as well, so you don’t know how to deal with conflict resolution or things like that. So, sometimes when that’s all that they've seen growing up, we’re having to start from scratch and really help them create their own love blueprint of what it looks like for them.”

Pro-stock studio/ Getty Images

Believing Success In Career Equates To Success In Relationships

Last but not least, Kelli touched on how families valuing women’s careers over their personal life can have a negative effect on their dating lives. “I think we are raised as Black women to feel like your value in a relationship is tied to your career and your success, and so you know our families celebrate that. ‘Oh, this woman is a doctor.’ ‘This one is a lawyer.’ ‘This one’s an engineer.’ No one’s celebrating, ‘Oh, she got married, and she’s a wonderful wife and mother,’ not as much as the career,” Kelli admitted.

“So, it’s like almost thinking that, 'Okay, well, she is a doctor. She’s gonna be an amazing wife,' and the skills don’t transfer. It's two different skill sets that we have to really build up, one as much as the other, a lot of times.”

Winning Tips To Help You Navigate The Dating World Successfully

While there may be some factors keeping some of us single, you don’t have to stay single for long, if that’s your choice, of course. According to Kelli and Tana, when you walk out of your door, you are “on the market,” so always be ready to meet a potential suitor. Whether that’s the grocery store, Tana suggested going to the grocery store between the hours of 5-8 p.m. because that’s when men get off work or leave the gym, or running a quick errand. The Matchmaking DUO also recommended going to sports bars and sporting events because the men are there.

“It's really about showing interest. There’s nothing wrong with showing interest, and once you show interest, usually he’ll take the lead, but when you think about a man, a lot of times we’re trained don’t even make eyes with them,” Kelli stated.

“What we want him to do, we want him to see us in the grocery store, we’re not even looking up. We want him to come around to where we are, say hello, make us look up, and have a conversation only for us to [say], ‘Oh, no, I’m not interested.’ I mean, that’s a lot of work, so at least if you look up, smile and say hello, that will get the ball rolling more than you think.”

Another tip is just to smile. If you are single and ready to mingle, then it’s important to look approachable. Tana suggested giving yourself a smile challenge where you smile at least 50 times a day. That way, it can become easier to smile at someone who catches your eye.

“It's really about showing interest. There’s nothing wrong with showing interest, and once you show interest, usually he’ll take the lead, but when you think about a man, a lot of times we’re trained don’t even make eyes with them."

How To Talk To Your Crush

Okay, so you got your crush’s attention, what do you say? According to Tana, it’s simple, compliment them. “Who's going to turn a compliment away? You can find something to compliment him on– his shoes, his watch, men love technology,” Tana noted. “They usually have a nice watch, they usually have nice socks, a lot of them. Or a nice smile, or they smell good.

“Give them a compliment. No one’s going to turn down a compliment. Lead with a compliment and at least an introduction and your name. If nothing else, you could at least give him a soft introduction of who you are. Just let the conversation take its course.”

For more information about the Matchmaking DUO, check out their website thematchmakingduo.com, and follow them on all social media platforms @thematchmakingduo.

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Feature image Carlos Barquero/ Getty Images

 

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