Seriously? Is It Just Me…

Posts Tagged ‘boyfriend

love triangle with two women and one man

Walk Away!

One night while channel surfing I stumbled upon a documentary that quickly caught my attention. The setting was a fairly large modern home situated in a suburban neighborhood full of other newly architected residents.

Inside the house were the cheerful sounds of laughter and chatter from a family as they cooked dinner in their spacious kitchen. Upon first glance, the show appeared to be profiling everyday family activities until I noticed that there were three women preparing the meal for the large family. Just as I was thinking, “is this those”…the husband arrives home to happily greet his children and kiss each of his wives. The documentary I had discovered was profiling the lives of the modern day polygamist family.

I sat dumbfounded as I listened to the women justify their decisions to share their husband with each other. Then one wife made the point that society really shouldn’t be judging them for their lifestyle choice when so many men in “monogamist” relationships are cheating on their wives, which really isn’t all that different from their situation. My first reaction was what a crazy polygamist lady, but then the more I thought about it I realized she actually had a valid point.

As part of my A Seriously Series on Who Let The Dogs In, the polygamists inspired me to make my third point of this series:

3. Stop Sharing

While I respected the comment above, I do not believe that polygamy is the answer to the rampant infidelity issues among relationships today. Knowing what I know from others and myself, sharing your man with someone else is damaging to the soul, regardless of which side of the affair you find yourself on.

The problem is no one, not the wives, girlfriends or the mistresses, are holding cheating men accountable for their behavior. In fact, it seems that more and more women are finding themselves in open marriages, swinging or polygamist relationships. As long as you look the other way, why would he not believe that you approve or don’t care about his behavior? There’s no reason for him to leave the other woman, when you’ve clearly let him have his cake and eat it too.

Dealing with a cheater can be tough, especially when you are so emotionally fragile. Do you forgive him? Do you kick him to the curb without a seconds thought? Do you let him go not knowing if he will ever come back? Maybe you even figure why not let him cheat, you aren’t interested any more?

Regardless of the challenges, it bugs me when I see women continue to overlook their man cheating on them by either repeatedly accepting his “apologies” or turning a blind eye to his behavior. Listen to your gut. Watch for the signs and nip it in the bud. Otherwise, you may find yourself sharing more than just your man with another woman, seriously!

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As part of my new A Seriously Series on Who Let The Dogs In, I wanted to explore the first item on my list that women should remember when they find themselves in a relationship with a man who treats them poorly.

1. He Can’t Be Fixed…by you.

Most of the readers of this blog know that my beloved family dog, Nash, passed away earlier this year. (Read about Nash) However, you may not know that I had my own dog whom I loved tremendously. Several years ago, a young man who was friends with my sister brought over the cutest little red ball of furry sweetness who had been abandoned by his owners. Instantly, I fell in love with him.

A Dog Named Chewie

Chewie during his happy times!

We called him Chewbacca, or Chewie for short, and boy did he live up to his name. From the moment he realized our apartment was his new home, he began chewing on everything. Throw pillows, screen doors, furniture and even a hundred dollar bill – yes he ate up hard earned cash. His favorite trick was to make a mad dash out the front door as soon as it was cracked open and taunt you as you tearfully begged him to come inside. He burped in your face, farted on your pillow and snored all night long. On more than one occasion throughout our relationship I had my hand on the phone ready to call the Humane Society to come pick him up. No matter how much I disciplined him, took him outside to play, or loved on him, he was not going to change his ways. He was who he was, and I loved him so I dealt with it.

Often I think we find themselves in a similar situation with a man we are dating. He’s absolutely adorable, has some wonderful qualities about him and makes for great companionship but there are things about him you wish you could change. Could be that he’s bad with money, and spends it quicker than it comes in. Or perhaps he likes to go out clubbing when you like to stay in and entertain. Maybe he’s not a big family guy but you want to spend quality time with yours every chance you can get.

In these cases, most women become frustrated with the relationship thinking that eventually he’ll change or grow out of his ways. They think I just need to make him see how great my family is, or show him how staying at home is just as fun as going out. Unfortunately, all that ends up happening is resentment on both your parts.

I believe it’s critical to search your soul for the character traits you desire in a man and the ones that are deal breakers before even getting into a serious relationship. If the man you end up with falls short then it’s not a good fit no matter how cute he is. If he drinks too much and gets nasty with you, then chances are no matter what you do, he isn’t going to stop without some serious help.

Eventually, I realized that Chewie was just as unhappy as I was in our situation. I was living in a small apartment, working long hours and he had no other animals to play with. I knew I had to save us both. Thankfully, a good friend of mine and her husband ended up adopting him and he simply flourished in their care. Although, I cried for days at the loss of my dog, I knew he was in a better place. He gained weight, had a friend to play with and a large yard to run in all day. He thrived and became the pet that I knew he could be, he just needed the right owners.

I think that we need to acknowledge that the man we are with is who is he, and maybe he’s simply not a good fit for you. Instead of trying to change him and making you both miserable, accept him for who he is or let him go. Yes, it will hurt for a while, but nothing compared to the pain of trying to make him into someone he was never meant to be.

Although Chewie was much happier with his new owners, he would make every effort to test their patience with his unbelievably frustrating jail break moments. He wouldn’t have been Chewie without bringing tears to your eyes, seriously!

P.S. Chewie passed away in early 2009. I imagine him and Nash eternally playing with each other in puppy Heaven.

I’m not a big fan of man bashing since it doesn’t really solve anything, but I do have to say this…there are some low down men roaming this planet. Not all men, because I know some great men who are loving, kind and faithful. I’m not talking about them, just the ones who are continuously being disrespectful, hurtful and rude to women.

Group of Dogs

Woof! Let Us Out!

Over the years, I’ve heard many a horror story from married and single women who have found themselves romantically involved with a man who clearly doesn’t respect them, love them or even like them. Unfortunately, I hear it so often that I’m starting to believe that maybe all men are dogs and there’s no hope of ever finding a good one. But then I thought, maybe it’s not necessarily the mens fault that these awful relationships continue to happen, maybe it’s the women?

There are so many beautiful, intelligent and amazing women in this world who continue to chase after losers and ultimately accept the abuse of these men. As soon as they get rid of one jerk, they simply trade him in for another. The stories are endless.

Well, I think it’s time for women to end the madness. To step up and start loving ourselves enough in order to train men how to treat a woman. I’m not a therapist (I just play one on this blog), but I do know there are a few things that every woman can do to help right the wrong that is occurring in our relationships. Since these are some tough topics, I’ve decided to break each point out into an individual post and make it a series, if you will. Here’s what us girls need to know:

1. He Can’t Be Fixed…by you.
I believe that people can change but not because someone sacrificed themselves to make it happen.

2. Get Puffed Up.
It’s time to build up your self-esteem and stop looking for validation from someone other than yourself.

3. Stop Sharing.
If he’s got another girl on the side, then let her have him and save yourself the heartache.

4. Expect More.
If he isn’t making you feel loved, respected and secure then he’s not a good man. <— did you see the period after that statement?

5. Don’t Chase. Be Chased.
If you are running after some guy who isn’t interested, then stop, turn around and take a look at the men chasing you.

6. Like To Be Alone.
Learn to enjoy your own company. If you don’t, can you really expect anyone else to?

A few years ago, I read a book called Why Men Love Bitches by Sherry Argov. She made several off the way, yet good points throughout her book that supported the idea that men are attracted to women who are confident, secure and don’t take any crap. Maybe if we demand that we be treated like Queens, we will stop settling for frogs, or at the very least be okay with ruling our kingdom alone.

I know this series will probably hurt some feelings, including my own, but honestly it’s time for the ladies to take back control and channel Aretha Franklin by demanding R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Showing love to someone else means giving without expecting anything in return. If you’re being treated otherwise, then it’s time to let the dog out, seriously.

It seems like every time I turn around, some new dating statistic is released that yet again dashes the hopes of many a single woman over 30. I tend to not remember the specific numbers since most likely they are inaccurate, but I’m constantly hearing about how:

  • The chances of finding a man go down the older you get.
  • The chances of finding a man go way down if you are a black woman.
  • The chances of finding a man go up or down depending on what city you live in (mine is down, by the way).

So it’s not a complete surprise, when I hear about some women who have determined that men recycling is clearly the way to go these days. After all, going green is the new fad, so why not apply that same principle when it comes to dating a man who once dated one of your friends. Frankly, most men are technically “recycled” from someone’s past relationship, however, there is certainly a fine line as to which of those men are acceptable to date. Wouldn’t dating be so much simpler, if there was a handy-dandy flip chart that helped you discern when it was appropriate to start a relationship with a friend’s ex. So here’s my lame attempt at a help guide:

The first step is to determine what type of friend she is and how to proceed. If she’s an:

  • Acquaintance then mark O for Okay
  • Member of your Girl Pack then mark M for Maybe
  • Best Friend Forever (BFF) then mark C for Caution
  • Like a Sister or your Sister then mark H for Hell No

The second step is to determine what type of relationship she had with her ex-boyfriend before you can proceed. If they were:

  • Blind Dates then mark O for Okay
  • Casual Dating (less than 6 months) then mark M for Maybe
  • In a Long Term Relationship then mark C for Caution
  • Married (with or without children) then mark H for Hell No

The last step is very simple, match up the two codes to determine if it’s okay to begin the relationship. Obviously, there is no simple answer, except for maybe dating an acquaintances former blind date.

Undoubtedly, I’m an advocate for a single woman finding an intimate, committed and connected relationship with a man but not at the expense of destroying a loving, connected relationship with a friend. In all fairness, each situation is different and it truly depends on the parties involved, but it should be discussed with each party involved. In other words, no sneaking behind her back hoping one day she’ll understand and be “happy” for you. You have to honestly take stock of the how it will affect your relationship with your friend and potentially if this guy is worth losing that friendship over. I know it may be hard to believe, but despite what the statistics say, there has got to be more fish in the sea, seriously?

In the land of love, many will reminisce about the “one” who got away, but what about the “one” who won’t go away. Who is this guy? Well, he’s the one who you had major chemistry with, dated for a significant amount of time and fell madly in love with despite your intentions. In many cases, you may have exhaled, decided to get married and live happily ever after. Ah, but sometimes life doesn’t always work out the way we planned.

For whatever reason, the relationship ends and while you are stunned, heartbroken and have to be peeled off the couch by your friends, you eventually come to realize that it was the best thing for both of you. Yet you still hold a soft spot for this guy and letting him go becomes the challenge of a lifetime. Most exes leave never to be heard from again, but for whatever reason, you find yourself in a twisted merry go round relationship with this guy, one that neither one of you is willing to jump off first. So how do you make it stop:

1. Stop communicating with him. Yes, I know that your hearts literally skips a beat every time he calls but that should be a warning not an invitation. The only way to get off the merry-go-round is to end the constant conversations. Eventually, you won’t think twice about letting him go straight to voicemail.

2. Stop meeting him for a rendezvous. Nothing makes the heart cling steadfast to a past relationship than still being intimate with him. Sure, it’s comfortable and he knows what you like but this only confuses the heart, mind and spirit. Eventually, he stops asking because he should know the answer will always be no.

3. Stop calling, texting or Facebooking Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas or Happy President’s Day. All these dates are an excuse to keep the lines of communication open. Eventually, you only remember his birthday when someone randomly mentions the date.

4. Stop thinking you can be friends. When you convince yourself that he’s suppose to be a part of your life even if he can’t be a lover, then all the above becomes impossible and therefore the “one” never goes away. I’m all for having friends in your life, but with so many kind, supportive and fun people in the world I recommend spending your energy finding someone else to fill that vacant role. The heart doesn’t forget who it once loved.

5. Go find another “one”. True, easier said than done, but nothing helps you forget an old flame than a bright shiny new one. Besides, I doubt the new man in your life will be accepting of your late night text messages and casual get togethers with your old boyfriend…er friend.

Cutting all ties with someone who you truly enjoy being with and love dearly is difficult. Every relationship serves its purpose in your life. If the relationship with the “one” didn’t work out, then take the time to determine what you learned from it, make a mental note and walk away. Of course, it could quite possibly be easier to stop smoking crack than end a relationship but eventually with time and willpower you will get there. Now maybe one day I’ll be able to completely jump off my own merry-go-round and meet you at the finish line, seriously.

This is what a real Cougar looks like!

A Real Cougar!

Television can do a lot for those of us living single. It can bring to light our struggles so that others can feel our pain, sympathize with us or in most cases make fun of our plight. Well, apparently the broadcasting industry has recognized that it’s now time for the life of a Cougar to go mainstream. For those of you who think I’m referring to the Animal Channel and their documentaries on large cats, then let me update you. A Cougar is the nickname for an older woman who dates men at least 8 years her junior typically in their 20s. Hence, the new show called Cougartown.

Read the rest of this entry »

Throughout my life I’ve generally been more successful at having female friends rather than male ones. It frustrates me somewhat because I think having a guy friend to pal around with can be a lot of fun. They are able to offer a different perspective on dating, they can be great wingmen (if used properly), and who couldn’t use a dose of testosterone to help with the heavy lifting around the house. However, finding a true male friend tends to be the exception rather than the rule.

Read the rest of this entry »


Soapbox Diaries from an Unplanned Single Life!

I hope you enjoy the random thoughts, observations and life lessons that I've learned along the way. It's called Seriously? because some days I just shake my head and say seriously, is this my life?


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