Reality Steve

Dr. Reality Steve

Podcast #32 – Interview with DeAnna Stagliano & “Dr. Reality Steve”

Dr. Reality Steve

Regarding Tenley: You both talked about the effects of finding out that an ex had moved on with their lives, specifically becoming an expecting parent. I had a similar experience myself, though it wasn’t with an ex, per se, but someone I had casually dated. In this case, I got one of those “people you might know” notifications on FB and it was this guy I hadn’t seen or heard from in a couple of years. In the years since I last saw him, I’d begun and ended a relationship with someone else (which left me with a broken heart), so when I saw this other guy show up on FB I clicked on his profile out of curiosity. Turns out, he’d just updated his profile/cover photos with ones from his recent marriage. When I saw that, I actually broke into tears. Part of me was feeling hurt because while we were dating he always used the “I’m not looking/ready for a relationship” line with me*, and here he was a mere 3 years later getting married! But part of me was upset because it made me feel that much more lonely. It’s not that I wanted to be with HIM, but more about re-living the loss of my more recent relationship, whom I thought was “the one.” I think the hurt comes because it’s a reminder that someone has moved on with their life and found happiness, and you have not. So, it’s interesting how some random encounters can bring up all kinds of past hurts that we thought were resolved. The heart can take a long time to heal.

Actually, maybe I do have a question: when guys say, “I’m not ready/looking for a relationship,” and then next thing you know they’re in a relationship with someone, what’s up with that?? Code for “I don’t want to be in a relationship WITH YOU?”

Comment: Every case is different, but yeah, usually it just means “not with you.” In your situation, I mean, it was 3 years later so he easily could’ve matured and realized he did want to be in a relationship. If you say that to someone, then a month later or whatever you have a significant other, then yeah, that’s pretty much a slap in the face to the person you just told you weren’t ready for a relationship. No one “finds themselves” in a month. Sorry. But in 3 years could his priorities have changed? Absolutely. I know there was a time in my life where I wasn’t ready and I’m sure I dropped that line on someone as well. So in your case, I wouldn’t necessarily chalk it up to it being he just didn’t want one with you, since it happened for him 3 years later.

I need some guy outlook on something and since I don’t have any guy friends I thought I would ask you. I’m a very traditional girl in a sense where I like the guy to come get me, hold the door open, etc. However, when it comes to paying for dinner, I would hope he would pay for it. I have no problem paying for it, but feel that he should pay for the first date. However, my sister says it’s 2017, and you should go Dutch. However, I disagree with that. If a girl said to you for a first date that you should both go Dutch, then what would your response be? Would you be ok with it? Would you tell her, thanks but you got it? I’ve heard that if you don’t ever want to see a guy again, then you pay your part of the meal? With society changing, should I just change my view and just be prepared to pay for the meal? My problem is what if he wants to take to go to a nice restaurant and I want to make sure I can afford it, but I do want to go on a date with him, but I can’t afford the fancy restaurant. What do I do then?

I feel I should add I’m 33 and my sister is 38. She is married with three kids and works, and her husband doesn’t. I’m not sure if her being the breadwinner has anything to do with her feeling you should go Dutch on dates.

Any help or advice you could give me would be great.

Comment: I’ve never asked a woman on a date then went Dutch. Ever. I think it’s silly. I agree with you more than your sister. If he asks you, he should pay. Period. End of story. But I also agree that if I were on a date and she insisted on paying for her half, then yeah, she wasn’t interested and probably didn’t want to see me again. If you get asked on a date, then no, you shouldn’t go into it thinking you might end up paying for half. If he asks you out, then says during dinner or when the check comes that you should go Dutch or ask you to chip in, well, then I just wouldn’t go out with him anymore. But that’s just me.


Thank you for your advice on the very first Dr Reality Steve post today (the one about the girl in a relationship with the lingering feelings for the ex). I’ve been in a similar situation – I am married with a young daughter and every few months my ex finds a way to contact me (phone, email, Facebook… which I had to delete because he kept contacting me… and Instagram). The harder I try to avoid contact, the harder he tries. I love my husband and my life but there will always be residual feelings for my ex since he was my first and I was with him for 3 years. And the fact that he pops up every couple of months telling me he made a mistake, to leave my husband, and that he wants to make me the mother of his kids makes it really difficult. But reading your advice today really helped. I have to let it go. I’ve been with my husband for 6 years (that’s including dating time) and it’s time to let those feelings for my ex completely die. Like you said – he just wants something he can’t have. I should continue to ice him out completely. Keep up the awesome advice for us poor souls.

Your Torontonian fan

Comment: Yes, I agree. ESPECIALLY since you have a new life, a marriage, and a child. Your ex screwed up. It’s his loss. Nothing wrong with always caring about someone you had a past with, but it doesn’t mean you need to act on it. I hope you aren’t letting this ex interfere in your marriage. Sounds like you’re not, but I wouldn’t even have any contact with the ex. Unless it’s to tell him to respect your current situation, you’re not going to leave your husband for him, and that he needs to move on – not just you.

Hi Steve,

I recently took a job in Houston and will be moving at the end of July. I decided to move because I’ve lived in Ohio for almost my whole life and wanted to move to a new city with no attachments. About a month ago, I started talking to this guy that I met on Match. He seemed really sweet and cute, so I gave him my number, figuring that something would happen and it wouldn’t go anywhere. We continued talking for about a week and a half and then he asked me out. I figured at that point that it was only fair to tell him that I was moving so that he could decide if he still wanted to go out (I had mentioned in prior conversations that I was looking for jobs outside Ohio, but never said that I had accepted one). He said this changed things, but that he still wanted to go for drinks to celebrate my new job, which I thought was really sweet. However, in our conversations, he and I had both talked about how we were marriage-minded people and not trying to date just for the sake of dating, so I thought it was a bit strange, but I went anyway, thinking that it was a great way to get in some extra dating practice before moving with no pressure because it wasn’t going anywhere (I’ve been in graduate school for the last year and a half and have not been on many dates in that time).

So we went and had a great time! We laughed and talked for several hours. We both talked a little bit about our past relationships and he mentioned that he was a serial monogamist, not having been single for more than about a year in his adult life. We had gone to a wine bar right around the corner from my house, so he drove me home and walked me to my door and gave me a hug and said we should continue to talk. That was about 2 weeks ago and since then, he has still been texting me every day (just like we had before I told him I was moving), but has made no effort to meet up again. He said that we would go out once more before I left, but I’m not really sure what is going on here. I’m trying to play it cool and not get all in my head about it, but we are in such an ambiguous zone. A big part of me wants to say to him, “Look, we both know I’m leaving, so let’s either give this thing a real shot in the next month and evaluate what we want when I leave or let’s just cut it off”, but I feel like that’s a little extreme.

Overthinking it in Ohio

Comment: I think you are overthinking it like you said. It’s really nothing at this point. You’ve seen him once. And you’re moving in a month. I doubt you guys have talked about it, but is he stuck in Ohio? Did he ever mention he could move? Whatever the case, sounds to me more like bad timing. You’re moving, and if he’s not, is this something you want to do long distance? You barely know him. I would just play it by ear at this point, if he asks you out before you leave, go with him, see what he says, and take it from there. My thinking is that this will die off once you move and you won’t hear from him much. Unless of course you make the effort to. Then it’s possible. But I think you’ll be too entrenched in your new job you’re not gonna want to put out the effort to someone back in Ohio.

Send all links and emails to: To follow me on Twitter, it’s: Instagram name is “RealitySteve,” join my Reality Steve Facebook Fan Page, or listen to all my podcasts at Apple Podcasts. Talk to you next week.

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  1. rob22

    June 29, 2017 at 11:02 AM

    To the woman that’s moving: when you move, it’s exciting. New job, new friends, new opportunities and possibly a rare opportunity to start over. Even with a boyfriend, unless you have some kind of agreement towards marriage, it doesn’t make sense to me to drag that relationship across the country mentally. It just means you won’t really be starting over, you won’t really have unlimited possibilities and you really have just shut down the opportunity for new things to appear. A guy you’ve dated once? Please. For the 1 in 10,000 chance that some day it might be something?

    Look, this is fear talking. Part of exciting changes is the fear of the unknown. The temptation is to hang on to something familiar or lacking that, grab on to a security blanket. And let’s face it, this guy isn’t really even familiar or an appropriate security blanket. Please. No. Let it go and enjoy the adventure. I think you already know this, but you need to pull the trigger and move on. This guy makes no sense for you right now & you need to call it what it is.

  2. rob22

    June 29, 2017 at 11:13 AM

    I have to disagree with RS on paying vs going dutch. Certainly in my day, and RS’s day, the guy asked a girl out and he paid. If he didn’t, he was a douche. These days things are more ambiguous. Some women prefer to go dutch. Some still believe the guy should pay. I see the ambiguousness all the time with my sons and their dating habits and the habits of the women they date. This leaves the guy in a bit of a spot. Do I pay and maybe insult someone that thinks it’s outdated to pay for her, or do I go dutch and maybe insult someone more traditional? It leads to some awkwardness, so I think you need to be prepared to roll either way & be aware that the guy may not have a clue what he’s supposed to do. Either that, or discuss it ahead of times and set expectations in advance. I personally vote for roll with it & discuss your preferences if you decide to date a guy more than once or twice. It may take a little getting used to, but in the end, I think flexibility is the way to go. There’s almost no way for you to get into a discussion about this on a first date without coming across as demanding, high maintenance, or perhaps worse. If you don’t mind alienating half your first dates, then feel free to ignore my advice.

  3. lucyw4

    June 29, 2017 at 1:06 PM

    OMFG…the most annoying podcast ever…I skipped a few lately, I’ll admit, so I don’t know if this is a new thing, but I will most definitely be out if Steve doesn’t stop the awkward, lengthy, dumba$$ commercials right smack in the middle of someone’s

    I haven’t even finished listening, but I had to quit after the 5 minute food service/ stuffed chicken breast shout-out to comment!

    (DeAnna’s great…it’s the only reason I’m continuing on with this crap right now)

  4. janela

    June 29, 2017 at 1:49 PM

    lucyw4 Have you listened to other podcasts besides Reality Steve’s? Every long term successful podcast has advertisers/promotions. This is how the person/people creating, hosting and producing the podcast make a living. Their time is worth something and you are getting the podcast for free. If you don’t like listening to the adverts just fast forward through them. I don’t like them either but you have to realize you are getting an interview with someone you might never hear otherwise, it’s free content as they say. It’s a business and a job for the podcaster and they deserve to be able to make money for their time (which is more than just the hour they put in during the interview).

  5. rob22

    June 29, 2017 at 2:08 PM

    I have to say that I lifted my boycott to listen to this podcast. I mean Deanna was one of the F2 during the Brad picked nobody show AND was the Bachelorette. So yeah, there’s a lot more of interest to this podcast than most of the others. It was worth it, even though it was too long & I had to cut it short when she started talking about her current life (honestly I don’t care, sorry)… and the commercials…. yeah, annoying, although I do realize RS has a right to make a buck. So, that said, I’d say this one was the first one that I have to say was an A+ in terms of interesting topics for someone who watches the show. I think most of the contestants have a micro view of the season, basically only what they personally saw… while the lead has the full view including all the contestants during all of the dates, everything behind the scenes and what the Producers are pushing for. RS needs to get more leads on his podcast, definitely.

  6. LM111

    June 29, 2017 at 4:48 PM

    Re: paying vs going dutch

    I agree with Reality Steve on this one. About 5 years ago, I accepted a date with a guy that I was on the fence about (he seemed like a really nice guy, but I was only mildly attracted to him. Knowing that personality can make a real difference in a person’s attractiveness, I gave him a chance and agreed to dinner). He picked the restaurant (a new hot spot where we live in L.A, and very expensive). The food wasn’t great, and when the bill arrived, he said “we can split it”. My part came to $80. I paid my share and didn’t go out with him again (though he asked repeatedly and was genuinely confused when I turned him down). My feeling is – if you expect me to pay half, then at least let me, the woman, pick the restaurant! I’d rather pay $80 at a nice steakhouse and enjoy a good meal than pay for a meal that I don’t enjoy. Years later, I ran into him and he told me that I was “the one that got away”. All I could think was “of course you’re still single, dude. Women aren’t exactly swooning over guys that are just “ok looking” and ask you to split the bill”.

    Since then, no one has ever asked me to go dutch. I guess he was just an outlier.

  7. leighleighleigh

    June 30, 2017 at 1:49 AM

    I LOVED this podcast. Deanna was well-spoken, engaging, likable, honest, and totally DGAF, which is refreshing. Steve, I think you dropped the ball, though. When Deanna said that Graham didn’t want to propose but he never asked to go home, I sat up in my car and said “whattt?!?” to my radio (err – to your podcast playing via Bluetooth through my radio’s speakers). Had that ever been made public before? I was surprised you didn’t ask follow-up questions.

  8. tinyred500

    June 30, 2017 at 10:23 AM


    I totally agree with you as to why RS doesn’t query guests on his podcasts more. Especially when stuff mentioned (by his guests) has been previously contradicted by other contestants, or there’s been a live or taped broadcast that gives another version of what was said or done. It just appears RS takes a lot for face value, which is weirder as he’s seen all the seasons etc., so should know a lot about what was said or done.

  9. jas18

    June 30, 2017 at 12:26 PM

    I can’t believe you didn’t ask if she watched Brad 2.0, would love to know what she thought of it if she did watch it.

  10. rob22

    June 30, 2017 at 12:33 PM

    I think RS has his questions pre-prepared and really doesn’t do much cross-examination, especially when he gets an unexpected answer (I think most of the answers he know in advance). It’s definitely a talent to follow up. Most on air personalities aren’t that good at it either, so they have producers in their ear feeding them follow up questions. Obviously RS doesn’t have that.

  11. lucyw4

    July 1, 2017 at 5:44 AM

    janela…yes, I am aware…it’s still extremely annoying & incredibly disruptive to the flow…(and more than enough to make me join rob22’s boycott).
    Ideally commercials should run at the beginning or end.
    As for DeAnna…awesome revealing interview!I’m glad she explained her reason for sending Jeremy home…I did NOT understand that at the time. He would’ve been my final pick.
    I wanted Steve to ask her why she allowed Jason to humiliate himself by getting on bended knee since she thought so highly of him, but I actually YouTubed it, and it didn’t seem so bad on her part after all…he kinda just did it, without warning.

    One last thing…I like the photo Steve posts of the podcast guest…it’s always very flattering…well except for Tenley’s stepford stare, of course.

  12. katieottawa

    July 1, 2017 at 6:11 AM

    probably the most interesting podcast guest i think so far and i would think the most candid. Wasnt on to sell or plug her blog or business or whatever else. And as the lead you get firsthand answers as to why she came to the decisions she did especially since i remember her season being the one I went WTF with her ultimate choices when it was clear that it was between jeremy (who i liked the best) and graham but picked jesse.

    On the side note also back in the day when reality steve’s column were FUNNY as hell. Way funnier back then before the spoilers sort of a bit tainted his sarcastic recaps. If you are new I suggest going back to read his recap of her season, he was vicious back then and didnt spare making fun of those guys especially the chef with his pink polo shirt with the popped collar. Classic reality steve.

  13. dtandie

    July 2, 2017 at 7:44 AM

    Great question!

  14. instigator911

    July 2, 2017 at 1:46 PM

    I enjoyed listening to the Deanna podcast — not so much because I give a sh*t about any of these people, but because I like to hear how heartless and manipulative the show is (which we already know).

    When she waxed on about how much she loves her kids — which is nice, don’t get me wrong — I had to do an eyeroll. I have a friend just like this and I always sit there dead faced when she gets like this because we all feel this way and it’s not a competition and I feel that If I don’t wax on similarly, somehow I don’t love my kids as much? Regardless, maybe it’s just me, but that kind of effusive proclamation makes me feel weird.

  15. braveo900

    July 3, 2017 at 2:07 AM

    “My problem is what if he wants to take to go to a nice restaurant and I want to make sure I can afford it, but I do want to go on a date with him, but I can’t afford the fancy restaurant. What do I do then?”

    So he wouldn’t want to take you out on a date if it’s not to a fancy restaurant? That is the only way you could date him? And every man you’ve met is like this?

    I doubt that, and honestly, it just sounds like you’re making excuses. Be straightforward and tell him that you’d like to go on a date with him but you can’t afford a fancy dinner right now. He will either suggest a different place, ask you where you want to go, or offer to pay for you, at which point you can accept. Also, if you expect him to drive you there, drive you home, deal with parking/parking fees, make the reservations, AND pay, doesn’t it make sense that he should have more of a say in where you go?

    And what happens if you’re dating and he loses his job? Will you then pay for every date while he is unemployed, since he can’t afford it?

    To LM111: I can’t understand your logic. Would you have paid for his meal if you had gone to the steakhouse and he didn’t like the food there?

    Personally, I go into every date thinking I will pay for my meal, whether it’s a 1st date or 100th. Not because I feel insulted when a man pays for me, but because dating is a 2-way street. Maybe your definition of a 2-way street includes certain financial expectations about what a man should do simply because he’s a man. Well, it’s better to admit that than to spew out excuse after excuse like I’ve seen here.

  16. LM111

    July 3, 2017 at 2:50 PM


    No, I wouldn’t “pay for him if he didn’t like the steakhouse”. Why? Because I’m not his pal. I’m a woman he’s pursuing romantically. That’s the difference. Like you, I’m always “prepared” to pay for myself when I go on a date (which is exactly what I did in that situation) but he’s going straight to the friend zone. I split meals with my friends, coworkers, family, but not suitors. As for not liking the food – it was just the icing on the cake. If a man isn’t going to pay for the meal, then at the very least, he should be chivalrous enough to let the woman choose the restaurant! Good lord. It’s like that guy couldn’t be a gentleman on any level.

    Obviously, you’re entitled to a different opinion. This is mine, and I don’t feel the slightest bit bad about it. Maybe it’s partly due to the way my generation was raised. I’m 42. Might be different if I were dating millennials, but I’m not. Thank God.

  17. ladyjane747

    July 4, 2017 at 9:11 AM

    I may be old AF but when a guy asks you on a date, he should pay for the meal or the movie or whatever the date is. As a woman, etiquette dictates that you don’t order the most expensive thing on the menu or dessert or even a drink, unless he does (and that goes for anyone who buys you a meal, not just a “date”). If after the first date, the woman wants to invite him out or have him over for dinner, she should pay. If the dating continues and it becomes back-and-forth discussions about where to go and what to do, then it should be dutch, unless one or the other insists on paying and if that’s the case, the other one should do things like pick up movie tickets or bring a dessert or bottle of wine. But for that first date – the guy pays.

  18. tiffann

    July 4, 2017 at 10:04 AM

    I’m a millennial and the guys my age pay and generally pay for my friend’s as well.

  19. instachan

    July 11, 2017 at 12:21 AM

    Loved this one. I remember adoring her back in the day but she felt kind of irrelevant but I honestly had to go find her on Instagram after the podcast because she was refreshingly genuine and a great interviewee! Also, super interesting to hear about Graham! You should have him on, tell Michelle Moneh to pursuade him!

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