Archive for the ‘Love & Relationships’ Category

So tomorrow is Valentine’s Day… Honestly, I’m not even sure where this post is going lol. I’ve never been a big fan of Valentine’s Day. I know there are people who out right hate it, usually bitter single people, but that’s not me. I’m not against it or anything. I just don’t quite understand it, I guess. Maybe it was my first “real” Valentine’s Day with my first real boyfriend that kind of turned me off. He cooked me dinner (it was good), made me a card (it was cute and funny), and I think there was a gift (don’t remember). Then he proceeded to sing Joe’s “I Wanna Know” while he stripped for me. Anyone who knows me knows I highly dislike singing, especially men singing in high notes (I know, I know I’m a weirdo). He was a horrible singer and it took everything in me not to burst into laughter while his scrawny muscle-less yellow teen body stripped before my eyes.

I suppose the sentiment is nice; a day to show the one you love just how much you love them. Okay, I’ll go ahead and ask the obvious question. Why do you need a “holiday” to tell you when and how to show your love? Shouldn’t you be doing this every day throughout the year? Why be so predictable and do the same exact thing (flowers, candy, etc.) that everyone else is doing on the same exact day? To me there’s just nothing exciting or special about it. I get a kick out of watching men scramble around at the last minute buying teddy bears and balloons. It is apparent that not much thought or preparation goes into Valentine’s Day with most men. How can it possibly make you feel special to know that your man ran to Walgreens or Wal-Mart 3 hours before seeing you to grab whatever was left on the shelves, along with 50 other men? The last Valentine’s Day I celebrated I remember scrambling at the last minute, not because I wanted to show my love, but because I knew my boyfriend was buying into the hype, which meant I would be expected to reciprocate. This was a man who already had everything; so I remember it being more of an annoyance trying to think of the perfect gift. I ended up getting him something he really didn’t need (and probably didn’t want) and he ended up buying me something that he already knew beforehand I didn’t like. Now I know some men will put in the extra effort and go all out, doing something special, but still, how can this make you feel loved? How does it make you feel good to know he’s only doing it because everyone else is and because he feels this is the day he’s supposed to do it? And for some, how does it make you feel to know that the following day things will go back to “normal” until the next special day of the year? What do you like or dislike about Valentine’s Day?

Not too long after starting my blog I did a post entitled She’s Just Not That Into You. I was asked to do one for women but haven’t gotten around to it until now. Honestly, I didn’t think women were as oblivious or in denial when recognizing a man is not into her. I was wrong. Following is a short list for the ladies to recognize when a man is not feeling her.

He doesn’t contact you. One might think this doesn’t require explaining but you would be surprised how many excuses a woman will dream up as to why the object of her affection doesn’t call or text her. I’ve heard it with my own ears: “I guess he must be going thru something.” “I don’t know why he hasn’t called me back yet. His phone must be turned off.” “I know he goes to the gym sometimes on Sundays. He must be working out.” Please! For the love of God stop kidding yourself. If a man wants to talk to you, he will do exactly that – talk to you! Point. Blank. Period.

He doesn’t make plans with you. If a man only makes plans with you when it works for his own schedule, and it doesn’t happen often, chances are he is just using you when he’s bored and no one else is available. You may be a space filler. If the only “dates” you have take place in the confines of one of your bedrooms, you are just a booty call. If he always has an excuse or is busy when you suggest an outing, he’s not into you. I don’t care how busy a man is; there are 24 hours in a day. If a man is really digging you, he will find or make the time to do something with you. How many times does it take for a woman to get shot down to realize this?

He openly talks to or about other women around you. I have found that if a man is really interested in you, it’s like pulling teeth to get him to admit if he’s seeing other women. On the other hand, a man who isn’t doesn’t mind boasting this information to you. A man who openly flirts with other women in your presence, honestly probably doesn’t even care about your feelings. A man who has full-blown conversations with other women (who probably do interest him) on the phone while you’re around might even be trying to blatantly let you know he’s not into you. It’s great to be open-minded and not be jealous but does a man really need to rub your face right in the pile for you to wake up and smell the bullshit?

He tells you. Here is another area where women love to dream up excuses. People will tell you through their actions how they really feel about you. Not calling, talking to other women, dodging you, these are all signs that he’s not into you. If that’s not enough, there’s the more direct approach. If a man outright tells you he’s not interested in you, there’s usually no hidden codes to decipher there. When he says, “I’m not really looking to get serious right now,” that should not translate to “He’s afraid of commitment. I think he’s just been hurt in the past and is scared now.” If he tells you he’s not feeling any chemistry, that doesn’t mean he wants you to open up more or whatever other poppycock you want to tell yourself. That means he’s not feeling YOU! I promise it’s not the end of the world. Accept it and move on.

Rejection is hard to handle. I get it. But we, as women, really need to get out of the habit of making excuses and living in delusion all because we want a person who may not be meant for us to have. I remember turning a man down some years back. I told him the truth, that I just wasn’t attracted to him. He told me something his mother had always told him, “Just because a person doesn’t find you attractive doesn’t make you any less attractive.” It’s stuck with me ever since and I think that can be applied for the inside and the outside.

My answer to this question is totally subjective and it’s my opinion. The answer is no. It is not the same. I wrote a post a couple of weeks ago, Is Being a Good Man Good Enough?” and a commenter asked this question. I decided to do a quick post answering the commenter’s question because there seems to be some confusion going around.

I see a lot of women get angry and they get their feelings hurt by this assumption. They mistakenly think that because they’ve been seeing a man consistently for a month or two that the man belongs to them. Because they’ve invested the time in getting to know one another and possibly start to develop feelings for this person, they assume they are in a relationship. Even worse, a lot of women assume they are the only one. Women also misunderstand having sex with a man as the beginning of their relationship. Hate to break it to ya, but no. All that means is that you’ve had sex.

Dating is just that – dating. It is the act of getting to know each other by going on dates and spending time together. A person can date multiple people at a time. I don’t see anything wrong with that, personally. Being in a relationship is different. It is beyond the dating stage. Two people in a relationship have an understanding and have made commitments that they have agreed to with each other. Usually in a relationship some type of exclusivity exists. I also think there would be a lot less heartbreak in the dating world if people (women really) understood the difference. Also, having the conversation with the other person to make sure you’re on the same page will eliminate a lot of confusion too. It’s important that you know and discuss whether you’re just dating or are, in fact, in a relationship. Ladies (and gentlemen to be fair), don’t set yourself up for heartbreak by placing relationship-type expectations on a person that you are only dating because there definitely is a difference.

 

“In its purest form, dating is auditioning for mating (and auditioning means we may or may not get the part).”

– Joy Browne, Dating for Dummies

I just spent the past 3 ½ weeks in New Jersey to visit and help out with my sick grandmother. While I was there, I reconnected with my ex-boyfriend. When I say reconnect, I don’t mean we’re back together or anything. I just mean we spent some time together, got to talk about some long overdue and unresolved issues, had some good laughs, and are back on pleasant terms.

Although I do believe the past is the past for a reason and dating the past is a no-no in my book, I do sometimes wonder if I passed up on a good thing. Not to boast, but my ex is the type of guy that women only dream of and he is a man of good character. I could go on and on listing all of his good qualities and material possessions but I won’t for fear of sounding like I’m bragging. In a nutshell, I’ll just say he’s a good man and a good catch. Still, I don’t get butterflies when I see him or think of him. My heart doesn’t speed up or any of that.

Here’s my question, though. Single women are constantly complaining how it’s so hard to find a good man, a man that has his life together and is ready for a mature relationship; especially black women. A lot of us complain about black men dating outside their race and how slim the pickings are. Then you have the good men out there saying they’re being passed over left and right. Women don’t want them because they’re not “bad” enough or exciting enough. So, I ask, is being a good man enough? Part of me feels like the type of man my ex is, is so hard to come by. Should I so readily let go of someone that most women would die to have? Don’t all women just want a good man? Shouldn’t that be enough for me? I read an article yesterday that talked about how a great percentage of people with long lasting successful marriages didn’t marry for love. The marriage was arranged or they married because they believed the other person would be a good co-parent, to pool financial resources, or for companionship. I now ask you, the reader, is it wrong to be in a relationship for reasons other than love? I’m not speaking of his material things. I’m speaking of his character, his good character.

I will start off by saying that I have a lot of mixed views and unconventional ideas about marriage, dating, sex, and love that kind of go against the grain. So it’s no surprise that the same goes for my views on monogamy. I do view sex as a special, wonderful, serious, and spiritual experience that isn’t to be taken lightly. And there is where I will try to leave my opinions on this one. I’m more interested in the opinions of others on this topic.

Everyone wants that special someone to build that exclusive relationship with, and falling in love is beautiful. Then comes marriage and commitments are made to one another promising that each party will only be with that one other person for the rest of their life. Just stop and think about that for a minute, the rest of their life. I’m sure at the time the vows are being swapped it seems like the most romantic and beautiful idea. But is it just that? Just an idea? The rest of your life is a really long time (hopefully).

I know so many people who have thought of cheating on their significant other and so so many more who have acted on it. It doesn’t mean they love their partner any less. Majority of the time it has absolutely nothing to do with their partner. With such a large amount of people who cheat, doesn’t that say something about the idea of monogamy? Or are these people just immoral weaklings who can’t keep it in their pants? The simple fact is that it is natural to be attracted to more than one person at a time. Even beyond sex, think about every person who is close to you. I’m sure you have a unique bond with each person that differs from the next. Can you imagine say your best friend saying he/she didn’t want you hanging out with your sister anymore because you could only be friends with him/her only? Sounds ridiculous right? You share a different type of bond with your sibling than with your best friend. So why is sex so different? Why do people really rely on exclusivity?

I am in no way suggesting folks just start getting buck wild and sexing anything walking. I am also not speaking from an aspect of transferring STDs and things of that nature. Obviously you don’t want to put your health at risk. I am strictly talking about the idea that there should only be one man for one woman for eternity. For centuries we have tried our hands at monogamy and obviously it’s not working. Otherwise so many people wouldn’t be running around cheating. So why do people still continue to pretend or really convince themselves that monogamy is what’s true and right? Please don’t tell me something from the bible either. I’m looking for a better reason than someone wrote it in a book that it should be this way (no offense to anyone). Besides, the church is one of the main places where adulterers meet. And just for argument’s sake, even if no one cheats in the relationship but say the desires are still there. Suppose there is something lacking that their partner just cannot give them, even if it’s on another level other than sex, how much sense does it make for that person to continue living in an unfulfilled relationship or even an unhappy one? Should people be deprived of their true and natural desires just for the sake of doing what is “right”? Thoughts, anyone?

I saw this video some time ago. Then a male friend of mine reintroduced it to me recently. I think it’s pretty interesting. Partially because within the past two years I’ve gained a heightened awareness of the Laws of Attraction, evident in my own life. I also think there’s a lot of truth in what she says. I’ve never been a big Tyler Perry fan myself so I haven’t seen the majority of his movies. She makes a good point though about how the women in his movies are ill representatives of black females and feed into a lot of the negative stereotypes that we black women claim we’re against. So on one hand we say we’re not loud, obnoxious, angry, or emasculating to men. On the other hand we love to support movies that portray us as such. What does that really say?

I remember when the movie Waiting to Exhale came out. I was young but I remember all the black women all over the nation loving that movie. Why do we love movies like this? We love them because we can relate. We do the same things in our real lives that they did on the screen, get together and bash black men. Even though all these women had different issues, they all got together and generalized. All men are dogs right? I think sometimes we’re so angry and hurt, that we go into new relationships just looking to be disappointed. Maybe the lady in this video is right. Maybe on some subconscious level we enjoy turmoil in our relationships, and that’s why we make the new man pay for the last one’s wrongdoings.

karmaDuring our bashing we never seem to take responsibility. None of these no good men forced us to be with them. We made a choice! Time and time again we choose to date men against our better judgment. We notice signs that they’re not worth our time but for some reason we ignore the signs. My only argument against this video is that sometimes you really don’t know what you’re getting. Yes, sometimes men and women alike send their representatives. They don’t show you their true colors until it’s too late and you end up blind-sided by their behavior. Be honest, how often is that really the case though?

If you got with a man who wasn’t doing anything for his first child, what made you think he would do right by you or the child you create together? If you got with a married man who’s been unhappy in his marriage for the past two plus years, what made you really think he would actually leave his wife? If he hasn’t done it in the past two years, what made you think you could change that? If you got with a man who didn’t have a job when you met him, what made you think he could ever be financially responsible? If you stayed with your man after he cheated on you the first time, what makes you think he won’t cheat again? I think you get my point.

We send out messages to our men by racing to see every movie with a black face in it that portrays us negatively and by sitting around angry and bitter in our male bashing circles. Then we turn around and cheat ourselves by accepting these same types of undeserving mates over and over. I have a friend who is always reminding me that you get back what you put out into the universe. So if all you have is negative things to say about men, all you want to do is watch movies where other women are bashing men, and you really think and believe that all men are the same – dogs, don’t be surprised when a dog is exactly what you get in return from the universe. Next time a man does you wrong and you’re ready to complain to your girlfriends about it, stop and think about what you might have done to attract that type of man. Think about the fact that you chose him.