BMJ: To Forgive Or Not To Forgive

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

Ok… Can we discuss the season finale of Being Mary Jane? I know I’m behind on this one, but I was busy… Unjudge me!

The sarcasm:  I have to admit, there was something bittersweet about David’s mom popping up at MJ’s house. It was sweet in a sense, yet a slap in the face at the same time. Kind of like someone smiling while spitting in your face. She went on and on about how David is sorry, which I don’t doubt that he is. We all have a sense of remorse after doing some bullshit. What I didn’t like, is that his mom came to basically apologize for him. No, no David. I know the conversation will be hard… I mean… This IS Mary Jane, but what the hell?!?! Show how much you are sorry by standing up to her yourself! Say, “I’m sorry” and hell, “I love you” for that matter! Be expressive, even in the hard times. MJ is stubborn and has a pair of lips on her, but once the time came, she would reflect on those words. Those words that she (and any other woman), would so desperately want to hear.

Now on to Cece… The ironic thing is, through what appeared to be greed and extortion, MJ found what looks like a friend. She spoke at Cece’s bookstore on the season finale, and to be honest, it’s almost as if the woman forced MJ back into… herself. The self that cared about her culture, and what was happening around the world. The self that reflected back on all that had occurred and all that she had become, and realized that she really wasn’t being true to herself. But what a loop the ending through us for! MJ told CeCe that a publisher was interested in giving her a book deal.  They sat at the round table, and in typical CeCe fashion, she took off talking; detailing all of the payments that she so UNrightfully stole, while portraying it like it was within reason. Well, those publishers that she was meeting weren’t publishers at all. They happened to be the FBI, coming to arrest her for extortion. Cece was pissed, because she was under the impression that her and MJ were building a “friendship”…But I’m sorry Cece, friends don’t extort friends. That’s in chapter one of the “How To Be A Friend” handbook!

MJ also came under fire this episode for dating a white man. I use the word dating loosely because it’s more like a late night booty call than a courtship! She sexed, and sexed, and sexed this man in the steamiest and most exciting way. I mean, any woman would be up for this type of fun… And don’t lie, if you could get away with it you would! She ended up coming to the realization that it was merely a fling. Now, I’m not sure if it was more her fear of being judged for dating a white man, or her hope that she may still be able to find black love. But either way she cut it loose.

The realism:  Listen, we all screw up sometimes, and this time, it was David. Yes, what he done was whack… as HELL… but who’s to say that he wasn’t just young and dumb? Everyone goes through it, and hopefully, grow through it. On the flipside, where does holding a grudge get you? The only person that the grudge impacts is YOU. No one says that you have to go back to be besties and cuddle buddies, but get over your feelings. Look at the positives, you could have very well dodged a bullet, or maybe that “love” just wasn’t for you. Either way, make peace with the situation and move on.

To all the “David’s” out there… don’t be afraid to apologize. 9 times out of 10, that’s all a woman wants. Acknowledge your fault and wrong doings in the situation. OWN IT. That’s all you have to do, own it. When you act prideful and feel as if you don’t owe anyone anything, explanation or otherwise, you are losing a downhill battle. Not only are you being selfish and hurting another being, but karma will circle right back around and bite you… And we all know how that ends…

I believe that real friendships can form out of bad situations, but extortion is a bit extreme. It is never ok to use someone, and then think they will become your best friend. Everyone judges from the outside looking in, but you never know what someone is dealing with on the other side of the door. In this case, yes MJ was financially stable, but she also provided for her family, and had internal issues to deal with that were  far more severe than being materially poor. The bottom line is, she didn’t deserve that treatment, regardless of her attitude or possessions. Sometimes, the attitude and flashy personality can be a shield for someone who is truly suffering on the inside. Don’t be so quick to throw stones… We are all fighting a battle.

Lastly, the show mildly touched on corporate America, and the struggles within it. Ladies, we are all fighting the same fight. Trying to climb the corporate ladder and become something greater than all of those before us. However, fighting that fight doesn’t mean that we have to kick, scratch, and drag one another down trying to get there. Hard work and determination works just as well (in most cases). Working in CA myself, I have seen it all: the lies and cheating, sexing senior management, back stabbing, and sabotage, all in an attempt to get to the top. I’m actually happy that this very prevalent issue was introduced. Hopefully, it gets more exposure in future shows. (Stay tuned, I plan on blahg-ing more about relationships in leadership as well).

Whew! I knew that was just a mouthful, but I just loveeee relating fiction to facts! Anywho, what was your favorite moments? Did it go off with a bang or was it basic? Clue me in on any interesting shows out there that I don’t know about! Let’s talk tv!

Lessons To Learn From 2015

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

We all want to be that super friend, right? Or most of us do anyway… That friend who is always accessible; morning, noon, and night. That friend who, if nothing else, people can always call loyal, committed, and trustworthy. That friend who tries with every breath in them to give good, solid advice. That friend who wants more for their friends than the friends do… (I know that was a tongue twister, but keep up with me!) That friend who… well… is by definition A GOOD FRIEND.

The only problem is, good friends are not appreciated, and definitely not wanted all of the damn time. As a matter of fact, being the super friend might get you caught up in some mess that will leave you like… wait… what just happened? Yes, it’s true! Being the super friend might leave you friend-LESS, for alllllll of the reasons below:

#1 – As people, we control our situations. We control those things that we entertain, and those that we ignore. We control who is in our presence, who we choose to pass by, as well as what we tolerate from those in our presence. So let’s get straight to the point… You CANNOT give your friends advice or feedback on any damn thing that they are going through. I don’t care if they ask for it, they really don’t want to hear it. They will listen for the sake of pacifying themselves, but they could care less about what is rolling off your tongue. You know how you can tell? If they did care, they would implement at least one piece of advice that you have given them to correct their situation (whatever that may be). How often do you see that happen? I’ll wait… Getting involved in their shit will put the shit right on your plate. Next thing you know, it is more of your problem than it is theirs! The messiness has now left their house, and somehow ended up in yours. Now how is that? How is it that you call yourself helping a friend; picking them up when they are in need, giving them advice when they ask, and you somehow end up inheriting the problem? Just say NO! No one wants to inherit shit. Yes, it is totally fine to be an ear, besides, good friends listen as well. Everything doesn’t warrant an action or response. Let your friends call you and vent if they need to, but don’t soak it up and become a piece of the puzzle. That’s the key to being a super… Know your role in the friendship before you end up with the baggage.

#2 – There is a thin line between friendships and loveships. Please know which lane to stay in. A friend can never ever everr everrrr tell another friend anything about their man/woman. You will end up being the bad person in the mix. Next thing you know, you’re hearing:

“You’re a hater!”

“You just don’t want to see anyone happy!”

“You need some business!”

“You’re jealous and need some D!”

Whatever it may be, never insert yourself into the equation. It’s none of your business. No matter how much your friend tells you they would want to know, they really don’t… No really, they don’t! It sounds good coming out of their mouth, but when the reality comes, they will find a way to flip it back on you. Besides, whatever there is to know, the person is more than likely already aware. You just don’t know it…

#3 – Don’t overcrowd your friends… Being needy and obnoxious will leave you friend-LESS… There are boundaries to be understood, and lanes to stay in. Everyone needs the right mix of friends, romance, family, and work. However, if your friend finds themselves hanging with you and your man, while coming to family outings, and riding with you to work… When the hell do you get a free moment?!?! I know I’m an introvert, but you can’t tell me that normal people don’t get a bit tired of this behavior too… *side eye* I’m just saying, get some time to yourself. Go do something that you enjoy, possibly by yourself. Spend some time with your own thoughts. It is actually refreshing to just… be… sometimes. Again, it’s all about the right mix. That mix won’t leave you friend-LESS.

The #1 Reason Why The “Perfect” Relationship Just Doesn’t Exist

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

We are all in pursuit of that perfect love, right? By perfect, I mean that cookie cutter situation. That love that fits right into the parameters that we always expected. The fulfillment of that long ass laundry list that we created in years prior of everything that we “need/want” for that love to work for us when it comes along. There’s only one problem… That’s really not the way that shit works.

If we look at the way nature works, everything changes. Nothing ever remains the same, it’s naturally unheard of. We have four seasons in a year. In those seasons, the weather changes drastically, flowers either bloom or die, leaves grow or fall, and soil is either fertile or not. The same is applied to the business world. There are four quarters in a fiscal year. You could have a horrible quarter where your business takes several losses, and turn around and thrive in the next…. Same with college; with each semester comes different challenges. The amount of work and dedication that you put in determines whether or not you will be successful. Well, relationships are no different. I know we like to hold them to different standards, but it really doesn’t work that way.

 A realationship can go a long stint while maintaining unconditional love and effectiveness, and hit that one bump in the road that can make things rocky. Thatbump can come from either one, or both parties becoming comfortable with their situnation. When you get to this point, you can experience one or more of the symptoms below:

  1. There is no effort to date anymore. The relationship becomes boring and routine.

  2. You spend most of your time apart; either at work, or hanging with your friends… Pretty much anywhere BUT with your spouse.

  3. Meals are no longer being cooked.

  4. The house is no longer being cleaned.

  5. The tone in which you speak to one another has become somewhat… RECKLESS.

  6. Paying more attention to your phone (text messages, email, and social media) than you do your partner.

These patterns may be noticed by one or both parties, and quite frankly, they have the potential to change the dynamic of the relationship. Someone is going to start feeling lonely and unwanted. Someone is going to get jealous. Someone is going to deem these actions unacceptable, and is willing to throw it all away to escape the madness.

 The interesting part about it is, the shit will happen in every single relationship that you find yourself in! The only thing that may change is the timeline in which it occurs; some may experience it before even being a year in, while others don’t go through it until 10 years down the line. So yes, you can leave and chase the next best thing, but then how will you handle the bumps with that person? And hell, a new situation may come with even more bumps than that last.

 I know it sounds rather discouraging, but the difference between a successful and an unsuccessful relationship is how you deal with those rocky moments. When they come, because they will, what are you and your partner willing to do to get through them? This ushers effective communication back into the picture (which we talk about often), because both people will need to be open and receptive to having the hard talks, and figuring out what is needed to heal the union and move forward. Those are challenges that you just can’t escape. So, when your partners routine changes and you feel like you don’t know why, or you find yourself feeling neglected for one reason or another, start the conversations at that point. The longer you sit on it, the worse it will get, and before you know it, you’ve talked yourself into leaving instead of attempting to work through it.

 The bottom line is… Relationships are not exempt from the natural process of life just like everything else. You will have your rough seasons, and if you are in the right relationship, the great ones will trump the rough ones by far. The most important factor is:

  • How will you handle it?

  • Will you run from the thought of having a controversial issue or will you figure out a way to resolve it?

  • Is every point your breaking point? If so, you will never survive any relationship because none are exempt.

Before entering the one thing that may very well be the biggest challenge of your life, ask yourself:

Am I up for this?

It is hard work, but it is also rewarding if the work is done.

What A Time For A… SCANDAL!!

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

Whew! If you tuned in to tonight’s Scandal, you know it was the Scandal to rival allllll Scandals (while shedding light on some very valid issues, of course)! Tonight was the season finale, but if you missed the season it was full of relationship woes… From the on-screen love-ships to the strained friendships, these characters left no stone unturned!

The sarcasm: Liv, Liv, Liv… Why are you the side piece of allllll side pieces?!?! You are the only woman on earth that can have a boyfriend, a fling, and someone else’s husband and play the “no seriously, I love YOU” role with every single one of them! I know women all of the world are wondering how in thee hell are you pulling this off! And to be honest, I’m wondering the same damn thing… *side eye* But one can only do what another allows. Furthermore, you pushed a woman completely out of her house (the White House at that), for you to take her spot! I’m sure that is the dream of side pieces all around the world… Thanks for giving them hope. *another side eye* But wait… that’s not all… Low and behold, you win, (insert slow clap), only to take Fitz on an emotional roller coaster about how you never wanted to be there in the first place! You never wanted to marry him, you never wanted to live in the White House because you have just as much power as he does, and how dare he think you would take a back seat to him. Reeeeewind, weeks ago your hot spot was in the driver seat. You didn’t want anything more than to live out your days with good ole Fitz and have his babies… Why the change of heart? You admitted that that dream was only valid while he was taken… still married… still another woman’s man.

 Liv also comes from a broken family though. Both of her parents are deadly criminals, so again, she is dealing with some serious internal issues that she will have to heal from alone. But instead of healing, she is pacifying her pain with the D… Going from man to man, looking for romance and for-the-moment love. Clearly you would have to have some deep rooted issues if your mother was a terrorist, and your father was a cold blooded professional hitman, right? Not only that, but Papa Pope is manipulative. He will finesse any situation that can potentially deliver an outcome that is in his favor. I don’t doubt that he loves Liv, not at all. However, he can’t deliver the type of love that she needs as his child; the love that she is so desperately searching for. He may think that he is giving her unconditional love, most of the time if you are coming up short on the love-meter, you definitely can’t recognize it yourself. Well… unless you become spiritually in tune, but for some reason, I don’t see that happening in Papa Pope’s near future.

 The realism: Why is it that a woman will lust and chase after a man that she know she can’t have? What is it about the thrill of sexing and manipulating a man that is going home to another woman? It sounds fun, right? You can have your casual nights with him and send him home… or you don’t have to report your every move to anyone, because he has a woman. You can come and go in your own house as you please, and even milk him for money every now and then. But somewhere along the lines you catch a feeling or two… Now you want more time. The questions become, “Why can’t you stay the night here?”, “Why can’t we be together?”, “Just leave her…”

 All of which he might even consider. He could very well be taking his woman through soooo much at home that they both really want out. Little did you know, YOU were the scape goat! He hesitates for a while, pondering if it’s worth it. The more he hesitates, the more you press down on him trying to force him to make a decision. Then boom, it happens… He appears at your doorstep telling you that he left his woman. Uh oh… Now the shit gets real. All of the crap that his woman dealt with that you never got to see, and all of those little personality quirks and character flaws that she accepted him for is now in your hands. The only difference is, you can’t handle it! A couple of months pass before the petty complaining creeps in and the arguing starts. Tsk tsk… What a shame. The reality comes crashing down on your doorstep which is, you never wanted him anyway. You only wanted the thrill of sexing another woman’s man. Well, there is more to a man than his penis, and when you entertain a relationship, that’s the first thing you should remember. The ex has moved on… She’s happy and free while you are realizing that you may have made a mistake. Be careful what you ask for or you just might get it.

Now, I’m not saying that every situation ends like that. There are instances where the fling and the stolen man live happily ever after. But it normally doesn’t happen from taking him right out her bed (like Liv did).

Overall, the show was entertainment for sure! I thought the season started off slow, but that’s just me…

What about you guys?

Was this season all that you expected and some?

And the juicy finale… what was your fave part?!?

Did you agree with how Liv played Fitz? Let’s talk tv!

Reasons Why Women Everywhere Are Failing

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

We have failed… We are not our sisters’ keeper. As a matter of fact, we are the complete opposite! We have become so savage, so much so that we are willing to bite, scratch, and pull out the hair of a sister… over a MAN. We are willing to throw bottles, use weapons, and demean ourselves, thinking that we are fighting for what’s “ours.” Ladies, look to your left and right at your sister, friend, or neighbor and tell her: Sis, we are FAILING!! When did we become so mean, degrading and negative to one another? It would be one thing to say it is getting better, but it has gotten progressively worse over the last 15-20 years.

The bigger question is, where does that hate come from? The shrewd comments that come pouring off our tongue like water when we see one another. The phone calls to our besties that normally go a little something like:

“Girllllll, did you see that she lost her job?”

“She is selling her stamps again?! Them poor kids ain’t never gone eat!”

“Hunteyyyy, did you hear that he was cheating on her and slept with the chic in her bed?” That’s what she get, she dumb!”

“Now she know that ain’t her azz. Ole SpongeBob square azz looking heaux!”

There is probably a couple of yall neck rolling like this isn’t you, right? WELL, if you are sizing up other women and deeming them inadequate (based off your own definition of course), then YOU ARE GUILTY! If you are preying on a woman because of who her man is… that means looking for ways to tear her down, digging up her past, searching for where she works etc., then YOU. ARE. GUILTY.

We aim at other women with a loaded gun, also known as our tongue. The tongue is a lethal weapon for sure! It can build you up or break you down, and who is better at using it than the woman? But it’s really mind boggling because most of the gossip and negativity is toward women that we barely know (if we know them at all). So why? What is it that causes us to barf up harmful words and comments toward people that are a mirror image of ourselves? I mean think about it… Even in the comforts of our home. When you are pillow talking, what is the first thing that you tell your man about? Some dumb shit that your friend done (never the good shit because that stuff is apparently not worth mentioning, right? *side eye*). Is your man ever laying up under you just randomly talking about his friends? Probably not. Yes, men may vent at times, but they definitely possess a different type of loyalty to one another than women, which is also why you see so many men sleeping with sisters and friends. It’s so easy for them to ease their way in and tear the friendships apart because deep down, they know where the weakness lie and that is in jealously, insecurities, envy, etc.

We have FAILED ladies! We don’t support one another… We don’t support our fellow sisters in business, personal growth, or anything for that matter. If you know a woman who is an entrepreneur, why not support her business? Instead, we look for ways to tear it down and figure out a way to become her competition. Everyone has their own unique strengths. Looking at someone profit off of their talent doesn’t mean that YOU can profit off THEIR talent. Find your own niche and put your energy into that. Maybe that same young lady can return the support. Furthermore, we all go through trials and troubles, and definitely with men. Why are we laughing at one another’s issues like we all haven’t experienced the same pain at some point?!?! Why can’t we be each other’s strength and offer advice where we may have had the same issue?

 Yes, yes… We have failed, but we haven’t lost the game yet. We can still succeed through conversation and reflection. Getting to the root of the problem will involve evolution amongst us and our thought process. Let’s start with…

Self-control… Ladies, we have to learn to control ourselves; that means our actions and words. As emotional creatures, we often act and speak before we think. The attack is deadly too… But having those emotional spasms also leads us to believe that all can be healed with a simple I’m sorry, when that may not be the case. Apologizing is great, and I recommend doing so, but it may not always be accepted by the other party. Self-control also means controlling our temper. So another woman’s words should not get up under our skin enough to force us to respond negatively, and even worse, return all the hateful energy back to her.

Self-reflection… I still think that the negativity that comes spewing out of our mouths like hot vomit, is a reflection of what we feel inside. Those deepest darkest fears and anxieties come creeping from the crevices of the darkest places, masking itself as self-protection. When you look at another women and think: “She’s a fat, ugly, non-dressing, whore who doesn’t deserve the air she is breathing, let alone a man!” Something in that statement is how you feel about yourself. We think that the judgment and hatred is protecting us… Shielding us from letting people see who we really are behind the make-up, the clothes, the body etc. What’s hiding in there? Heal that and it will become soooooo much easier to give compliments and positivity.

 Have you ever seen the infinity symbol (∞)? The same symbol is used to represent karma, meaning what you give out will come back to you. It’s an endless cycle; this is why it’s soooo important for us to put out good, positive energy. Support others to get support, speak positive about others and people will speak positively about you… and so on. The bottom line is, we have to fix this. We will never get anywhere if we don’t even know how to be good girlfriends to each other. Hell, your man doesn’t want you cooped up under him all the time because you don’t have any “real” friends! QTNA: What’s the solution ladies? What can you do better personally that will help drive a permanent solution overall? Think about it… Small contributions can lead to big resolutions.

Empire: A World Of Hate and Dysfunction

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

Let’s have some girl (and guy) talk about tonight’s episode of Empire! This blog will be two fold because there are some very real issues playing out in these episodes but there are also some hints of funniness that I just can’t help but add some sarcasm about! Hehe… Anywho…

I literally shook my head tonight because I couldn’t do anything but think of the realism that the story line carries. This episode in particular deals with two very real issues that plague most households…

The realism: The first being the dysfunctional parents… Two people who are, or were, married at some point… Who has been intimate enough to produce not one, not two, but THREE children! But who currently cannot stand in the same room as one another and act like functional adults. We see all three kids battling for attention and acceptance, as the parents’ battle over money. We all know several people who are co-parenting and act like this right now. Every single decision and action is to spite the other person. And in this case, who can rule the music industry… But where is the parenting? Where is the guidance? Where is the regards for the kids? Whom, by the way, it doesn’t matter how old they are, they are still looking for that love and support from their parents.

 Ultimately, what I see is two adults who are clearly hurt; both from their upbringing and from each other. But it makes sense, if you are raised in dysfunction and turmoil once you have your own home that energy will still remain. Mostly because you don’t know any better. Who is there to teach you how to love and support your spouse and your children if your parents never reciprocated it? No one! One of the benefits of the scenes are the flashbacks… Reflecting on the childhood of Lucious and the confusion of Cookie really sheds light on their character. They have yet to grow as people, and until you take the time to do that, you can be of absolutely no value to anyone else. Sure, they feel like they are protecting themselves. They are guarding the inner child who is still hurt from years and years up built up pain. That child inside is actually waiting to heal, it’s the person outside that won’t let it. Now, the subliminal love that they still have for one another is strong. They are just too stubborn to hash it out and communicate! Speak it! Say all that hurtful shit, what each one done to the other to disappoint and demean one another and put the differences aside for a more cohesive family. It’s hard, it really is, but it will lift a weight so heavy off your soul in the end that it is definitely worth it.

 The sarcasm: Now… Can we talk about Anika and her cray cray-ness?!?! Let’s just start by saying she found out she was pregnant. Well… In typical side piece fashion, when she attempts to tell Hakeem he informs her that he is now in love. Instead of still expressing the fact that she is with child, she lied and said that she only stopped by to show her support and left. Now, we’ve seen these scenarios play out wayyy too often in real life as well. This young man basically used Anika in his time of need. First, to get back at his dad, then to get back his manhood. Not once during the season can I say that I ever felt like they were in a real-ationship. But as women, we are emotional creatures and sometimes we wear our heart on our hot spot. Yes, this man is young, and probably sexed her in ways that old ass Lucious couldn’t, but don’t confuse that with love Boo Boo Kitty! Fast forward, yes, being pregnant is emotional and overwhelming to say the least, but the baby won’t force the man into staying… It never works like that… EVER. With the season finale coming up, I’m interested to see what her plan is. Tonight’s episode ended with her staging herself as the driver for Hakeem’s new girlfriend. Again, cray… cray…

The realism: It’s soooo important for us, as women, to understand when we are valued and when we are just being used as pawns for the moment. Men can be manipulative, but we have something that they don’t have and that is intuition. We know, I mean deep down in our gut, we know when it’s right and when it’s just flat out wrong! Yes, it’s easy to shame the men once we pop up pregnant with babies that they say they don’t want, but we have to hold ourselves accountable too. Sometimes, the fun of the sexual experience isn’t worth the lifetime of pain that comes afterward. We can choose to protect ourselves (condoms, birth control, etc.) or just choose our men wisely period. It’s definitely time for us to take our crown back. It is a blessing to be chose by a woman and even more of a blessing for her to bear your child. No man should ever shun that, and if he does, he never deserved you in the first place.

Butttttt…

What are your thoughts on tonight’s episode?

Did you think Hakeem “really” won that rap battle? *side eye*

Would you like to see Cookie and Lucious hash out those childish ass differences and build a solid empire? Let’s talk tv!

Solving The Case Of The Missing Vows

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

Have you noticed that the amount of people who actually want to get married these days have decreased? Even people who are actually in relationships… Some are perfectly ok with staying right where they are, you know, without the marriage part. Let’s be clear, I am one who believes that the whole ceremony etc. is just to receive the paper. Marriage starts in your heart. Two people can fully commit to one another and be adjoined by the heart without the “ceremony” and still be considered married. It’s the belief and the actions that enforce it. The wedding, however, is the celebration of the union. The certificate makes it “legal” for political purposes, such as: assets, etc. If you ever split and you never actually got married, you run the risk of walking away with nothing. Which could suck if you and your partner built an empire together.

But let’s not stray… back to the topic at hand. Why is our generation running from the thought of it? Well, I have some ideas…

  • The Change… If you ask most men why they are opposed to marriage, they will state that women change after they say “I do.” Ladies do you agree? Think to yourself, did you slowly morph into someone else after you walked down the isle? Did your expectations change of your partner? For instance, when he was just your man, he could throw his underwear on the side of the bed after showering and you would gladly pick them up. But after the marriage, it’s an arguement because the clothes hamper is just five steps away? Whatever the situation may be, is it really fair to start requiring something different than we have allowed for all the time leading up to the marriage? Just think about it…

  • The Fairytale… Say you are one of the few that take the leap… Congrats, you made it!! Celebrate and celebrate again! But don’t stop working… Remember how much work it was to keep your relationship with your partner stable and solid? Well, that doesn’t stop after the marriage. We often have this skewed mindset that once we make it down the aisle, it’s over. Everything is rainbows and butterflies from there, right? WRONG! Everything that we do requires constant work, including our relationships. Think about if you got a promotion at work, and then just stopped working… how would that end… *side eye*

  • The Misconception… We all have friends/family who are or have been married, right? We also have some friends/family who married for the absolute wrong reasons! And then we have partners/friends/family watching those unions crash and burn and thinking… “See! This is the reason why I’m not getting married…” But WHY?! The journey is an individual one. If your foundation is solid and you can rest assure that your reasons behind taking the leap are legit… Then what are you affraid of? You absolutely cannot base your decision for not getting married off of another persons situation. Come on peeps… Now does that really make sense?

The bottom line is, marriage is a beautiful thing! It’s more that just a loveship… It’s a partnership in parenting, business, financial decision making, and all aspects of life. Furthermore, think about how many children in the AA community grow up in single parent homes. I personally grew up with both of my parents in the home (and married), and it benefited me and my siblings tremendously. At your kids sports events, how often do you see two AA parents there supporting? I know it happens, but how often? And at parent-teacher conferences? Outside of our selfish thought process that keeps us from saying “I do”… How does our decisions impact our children?

 When we open ourselves up and allow nature to take it’s course, everything will begin to fall into place. It’s natural to want love… to want to have a partner that you can share your life with… to want marriage. Fear and insecurities are the only factors that keep us from it, and those two things are created in the mind. Something has to give in our overall thought process. Every decision is for “the now”… But what about our future?

 I will be the first to say that it makes me uncomfortable to watch the interactions of this generation. Since it does bother me so, my mind is made up. I vow to be the change that I want to see. I promise to be rational with my thoughts and decisions, keeping in mind that we are all human and being so, we are not perfect. And when I DO get married (because I am), my husband can stand firm in knowing that WE made the right decision. The decision is so much bigger than us as people. Think about your purpose in life… What is it? What stance will you take?

Ask Yourself Which Relationship Are You Nurturing

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

The definition of relationship is a rather easy concept to grasp. Yet, once you implement effectiveness (or lack thereof) you change the dynamic completely. Anyone can engage with someone else and consider it a relationship; rather it be your spouse/partner, your friend, your colleague etc. Being genuine in those interactions and most of all present, will determine the validity of them.

 

There are so many factors relevant in our lives that we very rarely take a moment to think about… Who… better yet, what, are we giving most of our attention to? We have our spouses, children, friends, etc. We often look at the things that we choose to give our attention to as our escape… For instance, if you have children yet you like to party, you convince yourself that partying is just your “me” time away from your children. If you have friends that you hang out with all of the time, you convince yourself that it is just time away from your partner. Now there is nothing wrong with taking some time to yourself… I’m not talking about those instances. What I am concerned with is when we go overboard… i.e. feeding this habit for several days out of the week. At that point, there is something bigger happening…

Ask yourself, who or what am I nurturing? Let’s look at it in more detail from the perspectives above:

  • Spending 3-4 days a week at the club/casino/bar etc. for several hours add up, and it ultimately adds up to the time that you are not spending with your children or your family. Your children feel that disconnection, they just don’t know how to express it. So how does it show its face? In the form of rebellion, attitude, failing grades, promiscuity etc. That is their way of begging for attention. Don’t be fooled, this works the same way for the “worker bee”. Those of us who feel like we are working working working to ensure that our children have the absolute best because that is what we are supposed to do, right? But is the additional income worth the hours, days, months, and years stolen from our children? We have to start paying closer attention to these subtle cries… They could very well stem from the things that we would never consider as an issue.

  • Hanging out with your friends (guy or girl), multiple times a week will also begin to pose an issue or two. Hanging out can look many different ways depending on the person, it doesn’t necessarily have to be a club scene. But again, ask yourself, which relationship am I nurturing? If you are with your friends, laughing and building bonds, when do you ever strengthen the bond in your home? What’s really surprising to me is that once the shyt hits the fan, we are surprised! No one seen it coming, right? *side eye* When you come home at night and feel like you no longer “know” your partner, you can’t understand why?

There is nothing wrong with nurturing all of the relationships in our life. The key is balancing them. We have to have the right mix of interaction with all of the above to constantly strengthen each bond and enjoy the time spent. That is the only way that we can keep from neglecting our loved ones. You can’t grow or get stronger if you are disconnected. Neglect can cause so many issues: self doubt, stress, and insecurities. How many times do you see these characteristics arise and question where they originated from? This may seem simple, but it really isn’t. The most complex problems are the ones that we don’t recognize. They mask themselves as innocent instances that seem harmless. I gurantee there are many people who never even looked at this as a potential issue. But we are all human so anything acknowledged can be rectified. Try to implement some small changes to nurture and massage ALL of your relationships equally. You will see a big difference in the amount of hell and hovoc that you receive at home. It’s the small things that made a big difference.

Reasons Why You Should Never Trust The Unspoken Commitment

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

Commitments are becoming a thing of the past. Between the men AND women who are commitment-phobes; afraid to take the leap into relationships due to a plethora of issues! Then there are those of us who “assume” there is a commitment. You know what I mean, right?… The type that have a couple of great nights of sex and all of a sudden assume they are in a relationship. Am I still not making sense? Let’s look at a factual example:

The Story: (I have to tell a story first because I like stories) – You and your peeps plan a night out. Before setting foot in the car it’s already understood that you are on the hunt. You want to snag something nice… A cuddle buddy, a one-night stand, or maybe even someone that can grow into something more. You’re dressed to the 9’s, slick from head to toe. You step into the club, smelling right and scoping the scene… You spot something looking nice over by the bar…

From a male perspective You’re gawking, eyeing her down. On your way over, you contemplate the perfect intro that should land you the panties for the night…

From a female perspective You side eye that handsome young tender. Once you look over your shoulder and give him the smirk, he signals you to come over. In your mind you’ve already played it out: Play the shy role, let him buy you several drinks, and give him exactly what you came there for in the first place.

You head home and the magic happens… You either get or give up the goods and all is well. Mission accomplished! A couple of weeks go by… you find yourself communicating with this person more than you thought you would. Their cool, the two of you have a lot in common, and your personalities seem to mesh perfectly! Awesome, right?!?1 What was a one-night stand could turn out to be a great friendship.

 Months pass… The sex is phucking awesome! Every other day you have to have it.

From a female perspective… You’re getting emotionally attached to this man. You begin to contemplate if there is a future with him (because now you want one). What would he be like? Is he ready as well? You damn sure can’t imagine him being with or sleeping with other women. Time to lock it down!

From a male perspective You’re comfy as hell… She is always accessible to you; morning, noon, and night. She cooks the meals at your house and hers. She cleans and make sure all your needs are met, not to mention her cookies keep you tamed like a trained puppy. You’re content with things just the way they are… I mean, you don’t want her to give up the goodies, but you don’t plan on slowing down your pimp stroll either.

 Everything is still going well… She considers herself his woman (although he never clarified exactly “what” they were). He is fulfilling her needs, so she won’t complain about it too much. He is content, she’s dope. She’s giving him house wife qualities without being a wife. He’s still playing his hand with all of his old flings. He doesn’t see a problem because technically, he never committed to anything to begin with.

The Reality: Now, we all know how this ends. If you don’t, let me put it into perspective: The female catches him either with or on the phone with another chic and all hell breaks loose! How could he do this to her? He was supposed to be faithful! This dirty, nasty, low down dude was still sleeping with other chics?! Who in the phuck does he think he is, right?!?

 WRONG!!! All sarcasm aside, he is exactly who he was when you met him. You never required, or even asked for a commitment when you started to want one… You never even asked if that’s what HE wanted. Why are you angry? You got there just like all the others. You assumed that he was in it the same way that you were, but that was never verified. How can you flip out over an unknown situation?

Moral of the Story: Try not to assume yourself into a commitment. It really does require the agreement of two people (not just one). If you are ready to be in a committed relationship but your partner is not, then you have a decision to make. But you can’t force them. The nature of the human is to show resistance when they feel like their power is being taken away, especially by force. Let things naturally fall in to place because they will. You want it to happen that way so he can be just as in love with you as you are with him; no room for questioning.

Why The Expectations Of Monogamy May Be Unrealistic

By T. Marie on January 19, 2016

Monogamy… One of the most misused words in the U.S. I want to discuss the word as it relates to sexual relationships.

 It’s very interesting, the way the mind works as it relates to this topic. We hear it time and time again, everyone wants monogamy, right? But do we ever stop to ask if some people are even “capable” of being such?

 Ahhh, the American dream… In a perfect world, it is ideal to go out and meet that one person that you fall in love with and be in a harmonious, monogamous relationship with for the rest of your life. Sounds perfect enough, right? Are people really this perfect?

 If you are in a defined relationship with another person, I think it’s safe to say that the assumption is that they will be monogamous. You would think that your partner vowed to be with you and only you. But what if your partner steps out of the relationship and sleeps with another person? Do you lose all trust and respect for that person? Do you leave what was once a solid relationship with the person that you swore to love, only to risk finding another person who will do the same thing? The very thought of losing everything that you have built with a person due to a fling is the very reason why most people (men in particular) are leaning away from entering relationships altogether. If you can lose everything in the blink of an eye, what is the purpose in ever starting it?

Let’s take a more realistic approach to the matter. Men in particular are animalistic creatures (even some women). Being so, they like the chase. That chase may very well land them in between the legs of another woman (Don’t kill the messenger, I’m just being real). Now, let’s ponder a couple of things before we get to hair swinging and lip popping:

Communication

– Have you had the conversation with your partner regarding monogamy? Let’s stop assuming and then get upset when our partner cheats. Be upfront and direct. Get his thoughts on it, and listen to his answer. If he respond’s that he loves you but gets the urge to have sex with someone else every now and then, don’t slap the shyt out of him! Listen… Now you have the information that you need to make a decision upfront. Either you decide if that is something that you are willing to deal with, and if so, then stay. If absolutely not, then leave. Don’t attempt to argue him down about his answer and still stay, but blow up and leave as soon as you find out about an instance that you knew could happen sooner or later. Again, we have to stop assuming. Men (or women) cannot live up to expectations that they don’t even know exist. We cannot assume that everyone is on board with monogamy because they aren’t. It is up to the individual couple to decide.

 In 2015, we have seen several new attempts at making relationships work such as: threesomes, open relationships, polygamy, etc. Open relationships was once something that we only heard about on tv… or so we thought. Now we know people as close as our next door neighbors who may indulge in one or the other. This may provide an option to some of the women who feel that they love the man who is great to them and want to help him fulfill the “urge” without him being sneaky and deceitful about it. Let’s go back to the key factors that must be prevalent in order to even attempt these options.

Trust

-There is no reason to even entertain an open relationship, threesome etc. if you do not trust your partner. Trust is a big deal in any relationship… Whether you are going the traditional route or not. If you are bringing other women into the fold, the last thing you want to do is be worried about if he’s trying to leave you for her or not. That can cause you to spiral out of control, causing insecurity issues etc. Don’t do it if trust issues are a factor. Better yet, contemplate why you are even there if you can’t trust him.

Communication (…again)

-Again, the communication lines have to be open. You have to communicate if you attempt to try something new, as a matter of fact, do a lot of it. If you are uncomfortable or something just doesn’t feel right, let him (or her) know. Don’t take this lightly. You are bringing someone else into your bedroom and that is a big deal. I would hope that you and your partner are on the same page… Especially if you are not sure of the other persons intentions. Better yet, if you are not sure if they have ill intentions, why invite them in in the first place?

 Many of our issues as it relates to relationships and monogamy, can be resolved by trust and effective communication. Have the conversation that most people are scared to have. Sit down with your partner and discuss BOTH of your sexual needs and wants. Through that convo, you may come to the realization that your partner isn’t even “capable” of being monogamous. You may feel the exact same way. As long as the two of you are in sync with your thoughts on the matter and keep your lines of communication open, you may consider trying the modern options. When you attempt to force yourself into a box that you were never meant to fit in, you are creating a recipe for disaster. Monogamy may work for some but not for others… The same with polygamy and open relationships. It is up to you to make that decision.

 Whatever your preference, keep it between you and your partner. Your opinions are the only ones that matter.