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The Dating Rules of VH1's Tough Love

Updated on January 1, 2011

Rules for Love According to Steve Ward

One of VH1's popular reality TV shows is "Tough Love." In Tough Love, matchmaker Steve Ward is on a quest to teach eight women how to find love in his personalized love bootcamp. In each episode, he teaches a few rules and then tests the women. He asks them to practice his rules. With these rules, he practically guarantees each woman will be able to find true love. What are these Tough Love rules? Tough Love in Season 3 is all about couples.

Image from Tough Love.

Season 3 Finished

6 couples are in for some tough love. Watch full episodes and see who got hitched.

Love it or Hate it?

Tough Love: Love it or hate it?

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Tough Love on VH1

Season 2 begins November 15.

What happened after the show?

Would you date these women?

See the profiles of all the women on the VH1 website.

Which woman would you date?

See results

Welcome to Boot Camp

Tough Love Rules from Episode One, First aired 11/15/09

  • #70 - Less is more. Especially when it comes to sexual partners. For women, it should be like a golf score, the lower the better.
  • #48 - Put a cork in it. Telling a guy how much you like to drink makes you sound like a loser.
  • #55 - Stop staring, please. Making eye contact shows you confidence, but too much makes you look a little crazy.

Communication

Tough Love Rules from Episode Two, First aired 11/22/09

  • #20 - You don't keep your ear to the ground, you'll never hear the buffalo coming. If you're into a guy so much that you can't pay attention to anything he's saying, you might miss some need-to-know information.
  • #4 - Remember your date's name! What, are you going to say, "hey you" all day long?
  • #87 - If you want to impress a guy, don't speak with your mouth full of food.

Sex, Lies, and Bootcamp

Tough Love Rules from Episode Three, First aired 11/29/09

  • #77 - Don't try too hard. Faking sexy is like bad plastic surgery. It only takes a glance to know it ain't real.
  • #14 - If you want a guy to kiss you, kiss him!

Daddy Issues

Tough Love Rules from Episode Four, First aired 12/6/09

  • #8 - Never let a pretty face fool you.

The Wow Factor

Tough Love Rules from Episode Five, First aired 12/13/09

  • #59 - Do not under any circumstances, do not fist bump anyone you might want to have sex with. It's like having a tattoo on your knuckles that say, "Just Friends."

You Can't Handle the Truth

Tough Love Rules from Episode Six, First aired 12/21/09

No rules revealed.

Money Can't Buy Me Love

Tough Love Rules from Episode Seven, First aired 1/3/10

  • #81 - When accepting a gift from a guy, the value of it should be appropriate to how you really feel about him. Otherwise, you'll come off pretty cold-hearted and even greedy.
  • #54 - Don't order a guy around. If you're barking orders, he'll eventually just bark back.
  • #79 - Never call your date "friend." Otherwise, he'll think romance is off the table because he's in the "friend" zone.
  • #11 - Don't dominate the conversation. If you're giving a guy a checklist when you first meet him, you can just check yourself right off his list. It's a complete turn-off.

Revenge of the Exes

Tough Love Rules from Episode Eight, First aired 1/10/10

  • #66 - No guy ever is excited to meet your ex. He's only playing it cool because he doesn't want to embarrass you or himself.

Ghosts of Dating Future

Tough Love Rules from Episode Nine, First aired 1/18/10

No rules revealed.

Away We Go!

Episode Ten, first aired 1/24/10

No rules revealed.

Season Finale

Episode Eleven, first aired 1/31/10

No rules revealed.

Get Steve Ward's New Book

Your chance to chime in

Are the "Tough Love" rules ridiculous or do they make sense?

Season 1

Watch Season 1 On Demand from Amazon

What Men Really Think

Tough Love Rules from Episode One, First aired 3/15/09

  • #76 - A first date is never a good time to air your dirty laundry.
  • #53 - Don't bring wedding plans up on a date or else a guy's gonna think your biological clock is more like a stopwatch.
  • #19 - There's no room for hypocrisy in dating. If you won't date guys older than you, don't expect younger guys to want to date you.
  • #1 - Don't be weird.
  • #12 - Don't go fishing for compliments. If a guy thinks you look good, he will tell you.

Red Flags and White Lies

Tough Love Rules from Episode Two, First aired 3/22/09

  • #75 - Shut your yap. Women, I know you want the guy to know you so you both can feel more comfortable, but when you give the guy too much information, you're going to ruin the fantasy, and he's not going to want to come back for more.
  • #21 - You should only text on an N2K basis. That's stuff you need to know, like I'm running late or I can't make it or I'm married.

Sex and the Male Brain

Tough Love Rules from Episode Three, First aired 3/29/09

  • #73 - Don't try to outthink love. Love is emotional, not cerebral. Sometimes you can be so smart, it makes you stupid.
  • #14 - Get a little closer. Send the guy some signals. Don't just play with your hair, make eye contact, gaze at his lips. And if all else fails, kiss him yourself.

Friends Don't Let Friends Date Bitches

Tough Love Rules from Episode Four, First aired 4/5/09

No rules revealed.

Dollars and Sex

Tough Love Rules from Episode Five, First aired 4/12/09

  • #100 - Everybody gets rejected, but it's important to try to learn something from it.

Dirty Little Secrets

Tough Love Rules from Episode Six, First aired 4/19/09

  • #31 - When revealing secrets, turn a negative into a positive. Don't just let him in on a negative experience. Tell him how it's helped you grow.
  • #84 - Don't assume a guy you're dating looks at a dollar bill the same way you do. Everyone has a different relationship with money.
  • #91 - Don't use a secret as a weapon. Reveal it in a way that makes you bond, not one that sends him running for cover.

Return of the Exes

Tough Love Rules from Episode Seven, First aired 4/26/09

  • #36 - A partial truth is still a lie. Telling only part of the truth is like being a little bit pregnant.

Season Finale

Tough Love Rules from Season Finale, First aired 5/3/09

  • #33 - When asking out a guy, try not to be nervous. Most guys love being asked out since they're usually the one doing the asking. So, be confident and direct.

Watch Tough Love On the Web

Get full episodes on VH1.com.

All the Rules in Numerical Order

All the lessons of Tough Love bootcamp

  • #1 - Don't be weird.
  • #4 - Remember your date's name! What, are you going to say, "hey you" all day long?
  • #8 - Never let a pretty face fool you.
  • #11 - Don't dominate the conversation. If you're giving a guy a checklist when you first meet him, you can just check yourself right off his list. It's a complete turn-off.
  • #12 - Don't go fishing for compliments. If a guy thinks you look good, he will tell you.
  • #14 - Get a little closer. Send the guy some signals. Don't just play with your hair, make eye contact, gaze at his lips. And if all else fails, kiss him yourself.
  • #14 - If you want a guy to kiss you, kiss him! (Season 2)
  • #19 - There's no room for hypocrisy in dating. If you won't date guys older than you, don't expect younger guys to want to date you.
  • #20 - You don't keep your ear to the ground, you'll never hear the buffalo coming. If you're into a guy so much that you can't pay attention to anything he's saying, you might miss some need-to-know information.
  • #21 - You should only text on an N2K basis. That's stuff you need to know, like I'm running late or I can't make it or I'm married.
  • #31 - When revealing secrets, turn a negative into a positive. Don't just let him in on a negative experience. Tell him how it's helped you grow.
  • #33 - When asking out a guy, try not to be nervous. Most guys love being asked out since they're usually the one doing the asking. So, be confident and direct.
  • #36 - A partial truth is still a lie. Telling only part of the truth is like being a little bit pregnant.
  • #48 - Put a cork in it. Telling a guy how much you like to drink makes you sound like a loser.
  • #53 - Don't bring wedding plans up on a date or else a guy's gonna think your biological clock is more like a stopwatch.
  • #54 - Don't order a guy around. If you're barking orders, he'll eventually just bark back.
  • #55 - Stop staring, please. Making eye contact shows you confidence, but too much makes you look a little crazy.
  • #59 - Do not under any circumstances, do not fist bump anyone you might want to have sex with. It's like having a tattoo on your knuckles that say, "Just Friends."
  • #66 - No guy ever is excited to meet your ex. He's only playing it cool because he doesn't want to embarrass you or himself.
  • #70 - Less is more. Especially when it comes to sexual partners. For women, it should be like a golf score, the lower the better.
  • #73 - Don't try to outthink love. Love is emotional, not cerebral. Sometimes you can be so smart, it makes you stupid.
  • #75 - Shut your yap. Women, I know you want the guy to know you so you both can feel more comfortable, but when you give the guy too much information, you're going to ruin the fantasy, and he's not going to want to come back for more.
  • #76 - A first date is never a good time to air your dirty laundry.
  • #77 - Don't try too hard. Faking sexy is like bad plastic surgery. It only takes a glance to know it ain't real.
  • #79 - Never call your date "friend." Otherwise, he'll think romance is off the table because he's in the "friend" zone.
  • #81 - When accepting a gift from a guy, the value of it should be appropriate to how you really feel about him. Otherwise, you'll come off pretty cold-hearted and even greedy.
  • #84 - Don't assume a guy you're dating looks at a dollar bill the same way you do. Everyone has a different relationship with money.
  • #87 - If you want to impress a guy, don't speak with your mouth full of food.
  • #91 - Don't use a secret as a weapon. Reveal it in a way that makes you bond, not one that sends him running for cover.
  • #100 - Everybody gets rejected, but it's important to try to learn something from it.

What are your opinions on Tough Love and its love rules?

Fan of VH1's Tough Love? - Tell us what you think

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    • Umberto Oliviera profile image

      Umberto Oliviera 15 months ago

      Thanks for this great article!

      http://www.10best-datingsites.com

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      #1. Don't be weird, best advice ever

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      well i love the show and i take notes myself because i want to know what and what not to do around a guy i like. i am a bigggg fan i love you steve....muah muah

    • profile image

      websitedating 6 years ago

      thanks for this blog site that i was able to learn new things on the other hand take in consideration what should be done on some cases like the above mentioned topic. Try visiting this site very reliable - http://www.personalsmen.org/

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Tough love usually comes up as an issue when someone else is out of control. Try to meet and dating unique person.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Tough love means falling in love without frustrations like on you just give 50 percent of your love towards to that person. Usually, you will know it through date.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      the rules to tough love may seem like common sense and something everyone knows already, and that may just be the case but we find ourself breaking them other than abiding by them! why is that?

    • profile image

      kymillia 6 years ago

      Tough Love rules

      kym

      dating older women

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      This is a good site to go with tough love: www.whyhedidntcall.com

    • StellaSingles profile image

      StellaSingles 6 years ago

      Entertaining yes, but real - far from it. I enjoy the fun and exciting value it has - but I don't think it holds much validity to actual daters. While some may experience issues similar to those that these girls face - chances are these insecurities aren't broadcasted to millions of viewers and thus have a lesser chance to manifest themselves into major problems. If you are having body image troubles or are notorious for choosing abusive partners for example, seek help, don't wait.

      (Stella Belmar) - - http://www.stellasingles.com

    • profile image

      timothy6218 6 years ago

      Thank you for sharing. I love this page and I've bookmarked it and added it to my favs websites. My top dating website is http://www.wantadatefast.com The site is well designed with many positive comments.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Thanks for lens about Dating Rules with Tough Love. i like its for the show.. it will the best for your couple..

      http://tryanewlife.com

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Great article thanks!

      Maayan

      http://www.top10bestdatingsites.com/

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      i think they will help you. by the way i am watching it now it is the best..... love the show

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      I do not agree with rule#21 Some guys do like to txt and even tell u to txt them, But Steve :) I would love to be on your' show.