How We Met: Lisa Butcher & Dr Linda Papadopoulos

'She keeps trying to find me a date, but... her judgement can be questionable'

Dr Linda Papadopoulos, 37, is a media psychologist and writer who has provided commentary on shows such as 'Big Brother'. In addition to her academic work, her books on popular psychology include 'What Men Say, What Women Hear' and 'The Man Manual'. She lives in west London with her husband and daughter

Lisa and I met a few years ago when we both went into a studio to work on a radio campaign. It was for Fairy Liquid of all things and I remember listening to her trying to answer all these questions about household chores and finding it very funny that she was clearly as undomesticated as I was.

We got chatting between recordings and it was obvious we had lots in common – we're the same age, we both have kids and a similarly weird, inappropriate sense of humour. It sounds corny, but I could tell from the way she behaved that she was genuinely kind, and I think that in society today, kindness is underrated.

We met for coffee not long after, then ended up working together on a pilot TV show that never took off. It was about relationships and was strangely close to reality; I am such a Greek mother – I am constantly trying to set Lisa up with guys. As a shrink who specialises in relationship issues, I should theoretically be able to find her the perfect date, but have I got it wrong. I've even been on double-dates with her where she's texted me under the table to say that she thinks the waiter's cute.

We get together for coffee and to eat, or she'll come over with the girls and I'll make shepherd's pie. We also both love travelling and she's coming to Cyprus with me this summer; she is very fun company.

Lisa has a wonderful ability to live in the moment. She's had a hell of a time [with the deaths of her father and ex-husband], but she has a quiet strength and positivity. I've never seen her be self-pitying.

I'm a bit of a workaholic, so Lisa's laid-back attitude is a nice balance for me. She is much more spiritual than I am. I believe in morality, not miracles. She emails me articles from the internet, but our views just make each other laugh.

I really love that she is so intuitive. I spend quite a lot of time taking care of other people because of my job, so I feel very lucky to have a friend like Lisa who will hear something in my voice, pick up on it and encourage me to talk about what is bothering me. Those are the moments with her I treasure the most.

Lisa Butcher, 37, is a TV presenter and former model who was dubbed the 'face of the nineties' by photographer Norman Parkinson. Her TV work includes 'Britain's Next Top Model' and 'What Not to Wear'. She now designs clothing and jewellery, and lives in west London with her two daughters

The first time I saw Linda, she was sitting in the waiting room at a radio studio. We both went on to talk about cleaning or something and at one point, one of the interviewers started asking misogynistic questions. Linda stepped in straight away to back me up. I was a complete stranger to her but from that moment I thought, "You're my kind of girl." We swapped numbers and we have hung out ever since.

I admire Linda. She has achieved so much and is so bright, but never gives the impression of being intellectually superior. I left school at 15 to become a model, so I've done nothing like the studying that she has, but she never belittles people.

I am very interested in what makes people tick, which is obviously what her job is all about. I'm going to do a counselling course that Lisa helped me find. If I have a problem, I like to get her take on it as a friend, but I never want her to be my shrink.

When people see us, they often get the wrong idea about us. I have the whole tall, blonde model thing, so they assume I must be ditzy, and she also finds that some men belittle her intelligence because of her looks. It's good to have someone who understands that and it has made us both really feisty.

Linda mothers me, which is quite funny. She's got this thing in her head about trying to find me a date, but she has set me up on a few disasters. I once tried to explain to her who my ideal man was by giving the example of a male celebrity. I can't say who – it's too embarrassing – but it turned out she had just worked on a show with him. She was really excited, adamant that he was single and insisted I come to the wrap party to meet him – thank God I did my homework, because he was actually in a long-term relationship. Her judgement can be questionable.

Linda has been trying to get me to take her shopping and do a "what not to wear" on her, but I refuse because she absolutely does not need it. We do go shoe-shopping occasionally and I am always fascinated by how tiny her feet are – she's like a size one or something, like Cinderella.

We're writing shows for TV together at the moment. Listening to her pitch them, I am in awe of her because she can talk so charismatically. But when we meet people about shows, she's very good at making it clear to them that I have a brain too.

I've always found it difficult to make good female friends. I grew up with brothers, I was a tomboy, lots of my friends now are gay men. Linda is an exception. She doesn't believe in past lives, but I do – and I'm sure we knew each other before.

Lisa and Linda will be launching their In and Out Beauty project on 6 March at the Chelsea Club health club and spa (

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: One of the world's leading suppliers and manuf...

Recruitment Genius: Multiple Apprentices Required

£6240 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Apprentices are required to join a privat...

Sauce Recruitment: HR Manager

£40000 per annum: Sauce Recruitment: This is an exciting opportunity for a HR...

Ashdown Group: Interim HR Manager - 3 Month FTC - Henley-on-Thames

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A well-established organisation oper...

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness