MATCHMAKER: Paul Carrick Brunson
IN the last five years Paul Carrick Brunson - dubbed the 'modern day matchmaker' and the 'real life Hitch' - has been recognised as one of the most successful matchmakers in the world.
Having helped countless people through his award-winning matchmaking firm, The Paul C. Brunson Agency and his best-selling book It’s Complicated (But It Doesn’t Have to Be), Brunson knows a thing or two about finding love.
“Through everything I do, it’s all geared around creating hope,” said Brunson. “I feel like this is my ministry and I this is what I was put on this earth to do.”
Through his work over the last half a decade, Brunson has uncovered distinctive differences between finding love in America and the UK, and also between black people and other ethnic groups.
He said: "What I've noticed is the UK is more conservative. It's a more conservative community.
“And what I mean by that is there is more etiquette and more reservations.
"But the underlying problems and issues are the same. Hook-up culture and devaluing of marriage are existent in both countries.”
The matchmaker also commented on the difference between black and white relationships. "This is a question I get often. And my honest opinion - I've done a lot of research into it and the number one difference is that pop culture and media puts on it.”
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He continued: “The problem is that, if it ‘bleeds, it leads’. The more crazy and outlandish the news and programmes are, the more likely people are going to read the story, or watch the programmes,” Brunson explained.
"Unfortunately, a lot of statistics among the black community [about divorce and adultery], get puffed up and blown out of proportion and it ends up landing in the psyche of black people.
“And we allow our psyche to get crushed like that.”
He added: “I’ve noticed, there’s a whole lot less hope among black people and their outlook on marriage and relationships versus other ethnic groups and I believe that a large contributing factor of that is the media.”
Brunson, who has been married to his best friend and business partner, Jill, for 14 years, told Life & Style why it’s important for him to help create strong relationships, especially within the black community.
“This goes back to my parents and what they’ve instilled in me. I’ve reaped the awards of growing up in a two-parent household.
“My parents also grew up in a two-parent household too.”
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He continued: “As I got older and I was able to see that children being brought up in single parent households had more challenges around social skills and academic work, it led me to realise that at the end of the day, strong marriages could be one of – if not the most – important dilemmas of the world.
“Without a strong family, we don’t have strong children, and without strong children, we don’t have a future.”
Brunson’s dedication to love and relationships has seen him become a Dell Inspire 100 honouree and he has been recognised as the iDate Best Matchmaker and Best Relationship Coach of the Year nominee in 2012 and 2013.
He is also the co-host on the Oprah Winfrey Network’s Lovetown USA. In the past, Winfrey has said: "Paul is much more than a matchmaker, he’s a life coach."
The father-of-one has given seminars and workshops all over the world, in his mission to help everyone find real, true love – and show them how to hold on to it.
“What’s unique about my workshops is that there’s an opportunity to get insight that’s never been given before.”
“Most workshops focus on dos and don’ts of a first date, but we’re talking about more than that,” he added. “This is about love.”