courtship-vs-dating

Welcome To My Love, Dating & Relationships Podcast

Hey everyone,

This will be short. I want to take some time out to thank everyone who has supported all my posts, blogs, vlogs.  Now, I want to introduce to you my new podcast about love, dating, and relationships.

I’m already on episode 03 Courtship vs. Dating.

If you’d like to hear the first two podcasts, follow the link below.

For those of you who have already read my blog on Courtship vs Dating, I expound on the subject even more on 3.26.18

Please click the link below, and then click the follow button on the home page to be notified whenever a new podcast is released. You can follow with Facebook, Twitter or Google+.

If you have any questions that you’d like to be addressed on the show, please submit them to:
relationshipsetcetera.com/contact

Subject: JustLsn Podcast

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

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every-man-has-label-day-31

Every Man Has A Label By Day 31

I recently posted about the dating label that most men put on women by the 31st day of the month. In today’s post I will be depicting the various labels that women put on men by the 31st day of the month.  And yes… women do it too.

It is also not uncommon for a woman to have all these men in the lineup at the same time (each one carrying a unique label), especially if she’s single.

 

A Label Can Suck, But Not All Labels Are Created Equal

All men wear a label (whether we know it or not). Some women might be more intentional with their labeling—but they are very similar (and subtle) to men in how they go about applying the status they give each man. Women might apply a certain label to a man that defines what he does [for] her. In other words, if he’s someone who pays her bills, he could be labeled, “money man.”

 

Your man (publicly declared)man-label-day-31

Pretty self explanatory. Pretty much the hubby or boyfriend. Your man is the most well-rounded, and balanced man in your circle. He is the one you can do most things with….from great sex, to going out, or just sitting down having a great conversation. He is the one you share your most intimate moments with. The one you “love” and accept no matter what. Your man can just be himself because he is a constant fixture in your life. He doesn’t question his label because you make him a priority.

Your man does everything. He fills up your gas tank, cooks for you, rubs your feet after a long day at work, listens to you ramble aimlessly about (anything)—he even lets you eat off his plate.

 

Sex man

A.K.A. “Mr. Fulfillment!” S.K.A. “The Plumber.” Over a period of time, if your man is not putting out, doesn’t have time, or he isn’t very good in bed…here comes sex man. In many cases, the label “sex man” can be had by a random man you met. The sexual chemistry is so strong, you yield to it constantly, and the sexual excursions became a regular occurrence. Sex man is Mr. pleasure…you go to see him late at night..or sometimes early in the day. Sex with him is intense and spontaneous…he probably does all of the things that your man won’t do, or hits all the spots that your man can’t seem to find. He is a fantasy fulfilled… the man that has the equipment to get you off. Sex man usually doesn’t have the best personality, or even the best character. He only has one job…

lay that pipe.

Some women would probably believe that any man would want this label (right?)…. wrong. A man that is truly looking for a real relationship would not want to be limited to sex.

 

Bill Man

every-man-label-day-31The provider. Sometimes [your man], and [sex man] are broke-ass men.  Or, they work jobs that don’t make them enough money to satisfy your craving for material objects, movies, trips, car payments, bills, whatever. Money has all that covered. You need a bill paid? Call bill man. Car about to be repossessed? Call bill man. Don’t want to spend your own money? Do I really need to say it again?

You typically tease money man…making him think that you will give him some, but you never do…and if you do…you don’t let him smash… you (just might) let him taste it, that’s about it. Money man disillusions himself to think that one day he will become, [your man]. In some cases, money man knows all about your (real) man and has mass amounts of envy for him. Mm is typically not the most attractive of the 5 men listed. Having low self esteem is very common. Simply put, he enjoys your company, and/or the sex you’re willing to give him in exchange for goods…. and no, I’m not making this up.

 

Movie Man

Movie man wants everything that sex man, money man, and your man have, but doesn’t have the resolute to step up and take it. Instead he thinks of it constantly…every now and then bringing it up—and at that point you quickly change subjects. This man is cool to go out with.. you can eat and laugh with him.. or, go to a movie with him. Nights are short with this man because you very rarely go into his house, or sit and talk (that’s your man and friend man job).  It’s usually you sitting on his couch waiting for him to get ready to go out, or, you meeting him somewhere to hang out. This man also is aware of [your man] but has no idea about money man, sex man and friend man.

If you just so happen to be single and have a movie man, you don’t take him seriously, he’s a stop gap, someone you spend aimless time with until you meet the man you really want.

 

Just A Friend

This is the man that you talk-to about all the above men. He knows it all. From your indiscretions, to your infidelity. You can tell him these things because you don’t see him as your man, (you’ve friend-zoned him) nor will you ever.  He has the best conversation—better then everyone else.  He keeps your best kept secret locked away, and can even be a great alibi if your man knows about him. Perhaps at one point friend man was  go out to eat/movie man…but you just didn’t see him in a more advanced role, so…he ended up being friend man.

You may actually see friend man a little like you see sex man, but he is not as attractive to you sexually. You also don’t want to violate your friendship, so you keep things on the level they are. Friend man wants everything your man has. He will bring it up from time to time… but you always tell him, “I don’t see you that way.” Friend man typically has all the qualities you want in a man but for some reason you don’t pursue anything further. Know one knows why but you, (and probably your girlfriends).

He might be lacking in a critical area, or maybe you love your man so much you can’t leave him. This is why you have so many other different types of men. Friend man either hates your man with a passion, or he tolerates him—and really doesn’t care about the others, because he sees himself as better then them. Friend man just sits there and waits for the opportunity to pounce when you and your man break up. He is the comforter when your man is acting like an ass or you get into an argument. He is in all honesty…number two on the depth chart, waiting to be number one.

 

Thanks for reading.
Don’t forget to comment below!

courtship-vs-dating-breakdown

Courtship vs. Dating: The Breakdown

I believe that we have confused courtship with dating…

Dating is what most people in the American culture do. Courtship is what most people in the American culture aspire to do, but conform to dating because either they don’t know how to court, they realize dating is easier, or they have been socialized and conditioned to find their mate one way, not the other.

Please stop using the word, “courtship” when you are actually speaking about dating.

What is Courtship?

Courtship is a mutual partnership, a journey together with the intended purpose of marriage (from the beginning). Courtship is intentional and purposeful.

Courtship is focus on marriage (or lifelong companionship). This happens from the door, not months down the road.

Men get antsy when the “M” word is mentioned. Why? A man that is intentional with a woman won’t get nervous at the sound of the word, “marriage.” In courtship, marriage is discussed, early and often. You don’t waste time playing around, having casual sex, and doing extraordinary things for a person who you don’t see in your future.

Finally, courtship is a linear process. It’s doesn’t have various different versions that are left up to perception, translation or recreation. It’s very strategic.

An example would look something like this:

Step 1: Get to know the person on a personal and spiritual level consistently. Talk about expectations, family, friends, finances, goals, and past experiences. Always have fun. Laugh, joke, and enjoy each other.. enjoy the process.
Step 2: Stay out of romantic situations
Step 3: State your intentions with each other
Step 4: Always pour into each other
Step 5: Stay out of romantic situations
Step 6: Make it official
Step 7: If you want to begin romance and intimacy, here is where I’d start
Step 8: Involve trusted family (or friends) in the process to get to know each other
Step 9: Involve your religious leader if you have one
Step 10: (Men) when you are ready, propose! Take her off the market
Step 11: Seek marriage counseling
Step 12: Make it official under God

What about Dating?

Dating has no real purpose.

You almost immediately jump into romantic situations (dinner dates)… and develop romantic feelings for each other. Real hardcore conversations are rare, and intimate encounters are abundant. As a result, the infatuation is allowed to creep in, while the intentional aspect (courting) is pushed to the side.

Ever date for months only to find out you really don’t know the person? This happens often. Then we wake up one day, in a bad relationship, or with a person who deceived us because we didn’t, properly court the situation or the person.

Most people date. [you disagree?] OK, how many people have you dated in your lifetime knowing you wouldn’t marry them? You knew this, but you still spent time with them, had sex with them, etc.

That is why dating has such a high failure rate.

Dating looks something like this:

Step 1: Meet the person (on or offline)
Step 2: Get to know a few things about them, and then jump into romantic situations based on lust and infatuation
Step 3: Feelings are involved but you barely know the person
Step 4: You’ve probably had sex by now, or at least kissed (opening up the door for more)
Step 5: You really have no idea where this is going
Step 6: You still don’t know a lot about the person you’re having sex with
Step 7: Feelings of fun and sexual pleasure override logic, and you forget you had a goal in mind (marriage)
Step 8: You finally ask “what am I to you?” Or, “How do you feel about marriage?” He responds with a blank stare or curious look
Step 9: You overlook step 8, and continue dating even though you both don’t see the other as marriage material or a long term GF/BF.
Step 10: It finally dissolves because it was never meant to be in the first place
Step 11: But you could have figured that out a lot sooner, had you courted

Or something like that…

A few things I know about Courtship and what it’s really about:

1. Mental

Unfortunately, our sex saturated culture encourages people to lust over the person they are pursuing. We need to intentionally get to know them. How do they see life? What makes them tick? How does their mind work? How will they handle themselves in adverse situations?

2. Spiritual

Unfortunately, many people compromise this principle because they are unable to find enough Christian (or whatever you practice) singles to date. However, we’ll never experience the same level of connection with an non-believer as we would a spiritual follower because they don’t share our values, beliefs, and/or worldview.

They are on a different level than we are.

3. Physical

Sex is promoted as casual and meaningless everywhere we look in our society. Consequently, most people in the dating scene expect to have sex within the first few dates. Also, when sex is acceptable, many men use women merely for physical gratification, leaving both partners feeling empty and unsatisfied. Therefore, we must develop a “flow sex” policy with the special someone we are courting. We should commit to spending time (primarily) with them in public to avoid sexual temptation — and to keep our relationship moving in the right direction.

Once you’ve truly established what you have, if you want to have sex, that’s your choice.

4. Emotional

Unfortunately, many people in the dating scene today withhold their emotions for a variety of reasons. Some don’t want to be hurt again because of previous negative experiences. Others don’t want to feel tied down so they keep their emotions surface-level. Still others avoid feeling anything substantial because they are only concerned about personal gain and physical pleasure. These approaches all hinder true intimacy. Instead, if the connection feels safe and warranted, we must allow ourselves to develop authentic feelings to cultivate god-honoring relationships.

Finally…

This is why the intentions of both parties needs to be apparent from the beginning. If you want to date… understand that there are consequences to that process.. emotional, mental, physical and spiritual consequences as we all know. A true courtship has NOTHING to do with a man [simply] pleasing, pursuing or showing a woman all his cards… But it has everything to do with both parties pursuing each other on equal playing fields, with equal investment, and equal risk.

Stop with the posts and comments about what men aren’t doing. Stop with the posts and comments about what women need to do. Gain understanding in what YOU need to do to reach the intended goal.

what-love-means

What Love Means To Me

Everyone has their definition of love.

I believe love is multifaceted. There’s love for family, love for children, love for people, and love for your partner.

I don’t know everything about love

One thing that I do know…

Love is always apparent, transparent and never a conundrum.

Love is a white blood cell that seeks out the virus that is hatred, anger, resentment, bitterness, envy, fear, and eradicates them.

Love isn’t roses for a day, it’s my word, my bond, my honesty and my heart for life.

Love is sacrifice… love is giving selflessly without thoughts of reciprocation.

Love is a lifetime, being in-love is a moment in that lifetime.

Love doesn’t take our breath away, it breathes life into you.

Love is thoughtfulness, note-taking, memorization of your partner’s needs and wants.

Love is writing your name on a piece of paper but changing the last name to your partner’s last name.

Love is proactive, it doesn’t wait… because love is like that orgasm that you can’t hold… it needs to be great.

Love isn’t petty. Love isn’t spiteful.

Love is honest expression when it hurts to say.

Love has conquered more people than Napoleon, Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Tamerlane, and Genghis Khan put together. Love is ruthless in that way.

From the hardest of hearts, to the most stubborn of minds, love finds a way.

So many people say… “Love is not enough.” We made love not enough.

Love is easy… we make it complex with all our lists, standards, expectations, preferences, and the lot. We call that love, that’s not love. Love is something we forgot.

Love was apparent when we were kids. We just didn’t recognize it. But it was easy… it was truly organic in its creation. It was trying to make your girlfriend smile just because you liked her. It was secret kisses, letters passed throughout class. It was phone calls where you stayed up until the wee hours of the morning until one of you (if not both of you) fell asleep.

That’s what love looks like to me. No makeup, no accessories, no taper, just raw, unmitigated passion for the other person in their purest form

On this Valentine’s Day, I wish you all the best in your current or future love.

Yours truly,

jay signature

facebook-snapchat-twitter-instagram-messenger

Dating in the DM – The Potential of the Facebook Direct Messenger

In Lieu of Valentines day, and for those of us who are still single—it’s time to get un-single or at least find a date (in less than 24 hours).

Let’s talk about the Direct messenger. Also known as, “the DM,” or, “getting in-boxed.” The most notable Direct Messenger is the stand alone Facebook app. There are others that exist such as, WhatsApp, WeChat, Snapchat, Kik, QQ, Skype, Viber and LINE. I choose to speak about Facebook Messenger because it’s directly connected to your Facebook app. Which is, needless to say, the most powerful social network in the world. The others are popular, but do not compare to Facebook Messenger.

Yes, Facebook is the devil. (I’m kidding).

Direct messenger is the devil - or is it
Photo Credit: Chris Newnham

The Bad

Messenger is notorious for spammers, scammers, married people seeking side relationships (side piece) outside their spouse, people in relationships seeking a threesome, people in relationships seeking someone outside their partner (without their partners knowledge of course). And finally, people seeking relationships with a complete stranger or someone on their friends list. Which is, completely harmless.

That being said, I don’t want to talk about the negative aspect of the direct messenger. Let’s talk about all the features, positive experiences and stories that have come from a simple acknowledgement of a Direct Message.

 

It Goes Down In The DM

Woman-holding-home-accessing-direct messenger
Photo Credit: i-m priscilla

What does that mean? It means, “embrace the direct messenger.” Be open to the possibilities that a simple direct message can bring you. I get it, you don’t know this person in-boxing you. They are not on your friends list, you have no mutual friends. So who are they? Is their page fake? “Let’s go look.” “he has 1000 friends and a few recent posts people have responded too.”

Instead of engaging him, you ignore him. Why? His message was respectful. He introduced himself, told you upfront that you didn’t know each other and had no affiliation, but he saw you on a public Facebook post and wanted to ask about you. Sounds like a decent introduction to me. And what’s the worse that can happen? It’s not like he’s a TV repairman turned death row criminal that will come through your internet modem and kill you. It’s an online experience. If you don’t like what has to say, it’s as easy as, “close and block.” Stop ignoring those DM pings. You know you see that message notification. If you are curious to see if someone has messaged you that is not on your friends list, go to your filtered message (message requests) inbox.  You will probably find a few people who tried to reach out to you.

By The Numbers

It’s important for you to understand just how many users on Facebook designate as single. Now compare that against the users in a relationship or involved (it’s complicated).

The below data states there were 669,600,000 active Facebook users designated as single as of, September 7th of 2016.

Single 37 %
Married 31 %
In a Relationship 24 %
Engaged 3 %
It’s Complicated 3 %
source: Statistic Brain, September 7th, 2016.

That’s a lot of single people on one website.  Of course there’s a percentage of those users that are not single, but are designated as single. But let’s just say that percentage is 20%. That still leaves 535,680,000 single people on Facebook, and you only need to meet 1.  Also, there’s a high possibility that of those 535,680,000 users that at least 10 of them will reach out to you at some point during your time on Facebook. 1 of those 10 might be your future mate. So the odds are definitely in your favor.  But not if you don’t embrace your DM.

Oh yeah… As of April 2016 The Facebook Messenger had 900 million active users.  By July 2016 the number was 1 billion.

Consequently, you have a better chance meeting someone on Facebook for free, by simply letting it, “go down.”

What do you have to lose?

A Different Perspective On the Direct Messenger

Right now you’re giving this article the side-eye. Like…”I can’t.” Really? Think about it. If you’re single, there’s high chance that you have been on a dating site. Or at least visited one before because you were curious. Dating sites are about as random as they come. At least with Facebook, some of the random people who reach out to you with romantic interests have mutual friends or connections. On dating sites, the meetings are completely random no matter how much they say they’re, “matching,” you. That being said, if you can go to a dating site and spend time setting up a profile, sourcing through profiles and responding direct messages and emails (while paying). Why wouldn’t you try it on Facebook which is free as the air we breathe?

Free vs Paid… no-brainer right?

Direct Messenger Success

It doesn’t take much. A posted pic or comment and someone will be inspired to send a message that will potentially lead to a relationship. Success favors the bold. So….be bold!

Success happens a lot more often than you think. People will talk about all the DM horror stories and frighten off those of us who might be open a random message request, had we not listened to them in the first place. Block out all that interference and go for it!

But hey… you don’t have to listen to me… according to TheKnot.com, below is a real life example of how going outside your box and opening yourself up to something unconventional, can lead to happiness.

They Met On Facebook

THE COUPLE: Kendra Cowser, 30, and Sean O’Brien, 32
WHEN THEY MET: January 2010
WEDDING DATE: September 14, 2013

Direct Messenger-Woman-Man-Laying down-next-each-other
Photo Credit: Two Rivers Photography

THEIR STORY: Kendra rarely friended anyone on Facebook other than people she knew, but in 2009 fate stepped in when Sean sent her a friend request. Although Kendra didn’t know him, he lived near her hometown of Galva, Illinois, and thought they might have mutual friends in common, so she accepted. None of his friends looked familiar though so she just let it go, until six months later when Sean started “liking” some of her photos. One night as she was packing up her apartment in Chicago getting ready to coincidentally head back to Galva, Kendra finally decided to satisfy her curiosity and message him. Sean responded immediately and they ended up writing back and forth all night. And then every day forward. It turns out Sean didn’t know her but she popped up in his list of people he might know. “I saw a cute girl and I wanted to add her,” he recalls. Both admitted that neither of them was planning on starting a relationship at the time, but it sure turned into one. Two days after Kendra was back in Galva, Sean was at her doorstep with a bottle of wine to celebrate meeting in person. In July 2012, Sean messaged her on Facebook (of course!) to ask her to go ring shopping—his way of proposing—and last September they threw a huge bash that their guests described as “the best wedding they’ve ever been to!”

a few more success stories

 

#EMBRACETHEDM

It’s not hard, just proactively send a message or respond to one that comes into your inbox. I’d quickly vet them out. Check their page, make sure they have an acceptable amount of friends (No new pages). Check for mutual friends. Also, see if they have some public posts you can view. Click on a few pics, and go from there.

You’ve got 1 more day!

every-woman-label

Every Woman Has A Label By Day 31

You Have A Label Whether You Like It Or Not

All women wear a label whether they know it or not. Even women that haven’t been chosen. I don’t mean the kind of label you’d find on a new article of clothing. I mean the unseen (and undetected) label. Yeah… the man you’ve been seeing has slipped you the proverbial, “status label,” behind your back.

I was talking to a group of women that all had the same question… “what am I to him?” At some point, every woman asks this question. Some ask it sooner, some ask it later. No matter when it’s asked, most men will have the same reaction in our mind… “here we go again!”

I said to them, “do you really want to know?” That’s like wanting to purchase a Givenchy Beaded Lace Capelet Gown, knowing it’s no less than $9,000, turning over the price tag, and being shocked at the results. Most cases, you know what you’re getting into. In the case of dating and relationships, you have a solid idea of what your label is before you turn it over and look.

John Wall-frustrated-suit

You see, we as men would rather you not ask that… ever! We’re perfectly fine skating along without the label. Let’s just-be. Why do we have to define everything? Well, women like definition. They like to know what position they hold in your life. At the very least, women like to know where the relationship is going. So, they ask.

That being said, no matter what they say, all men have labeled you by day 31 (of quality time spent).

Potential Girlfriend

I’m going to be totally honest with you here. Most women won’t wear this label. There are way too many reasons to list as to why it’s the second hardest label to garner from a man. That being said, It simply means, he sees you as a potential girlfriend. Meaning, he takes you very seriously and has no hesitation when prompted about a label.

Men can be territorial at times. Now I’m not saying that you’re property, or that he owns you. What I am saying is that he will want to take you off the market so no other man can have you. A man that doesn’t respond with the above label (and resulting actions) could be:

  • Testing the waters
  • Taking things extremely slow
  • Playing “games.”
  • Serial dating
  • Going with the flow (no labels)
  • Some other process he hasn’t yet defined to you

Jump Off

Urban Dictionary defines a, “jump off,” as, “a casual sexual partner or girlfriend.”

Don’t be mad, not everyone can be a potential girlfriend. Like I said earlier, most women won’t wear that label. Like Joe Budden said,

“My jump off doesn’t run off at the mouth so much, My jump off never ask why I go out so much, My jump off never has me going out of my way, And she don’t want nothing on Valentines Day, My jump off don’t argue or get rebellious, and she don’t mind hanging out wit da fellas, My jump off’s not insecure or jealous..”

excerpt from ‘Pump It Up’ by Joe Budden

Most jump offs, know they’re jump offs (if they’re honest with themselves). Even if you don’t know, you’ll recognize the label by the way he treats you—or the way he responds to the questions you ask him. Most jump offs are literally sex objects to men, and hold no true value in their life but a hole to stick, their stick into from time to time. Don’t be offended, some women prefer this role over full-time girlfriend. No expectations, no real—rules, see who you want, and no accountability.

every-woman-label

Time-Keeper

Yeah, some of you are sitting on the sidelines keeping time. Watching the clock, wondering when it’s going to be your turn to get in the game, or, get some real playing time. For now, you watch the clock, while he wastes your time, and pursues other women while using you for various purposes. Unfortunately, you could be wearing this label. In fact, I’d say, at least 20-35% of women wear this label.

Some men like to have a woman in reserve. A time-keeper who fills a need, until he finds the women he truly wants. So for now, you’re good enough.

That being said, a time-keeper can become a starter in the game. It all depends on how the ball bounces. I wouldn’t hold my breath though.

Wife Material

There’s potential girlfriend (cause that’s as far as you’ll get). Then, there’s, “wife material.”

This is the label most women want to have, and the hardest to attain. If he views you as a potential wife, you’re doing something right. Be prepared, because, men don’t pass this label around to every woman. In fact, 1 out of 10 women are considered wife material during the dating process. Sure… men might toy around with the idea, but someone we truly consider to be wife material… she has to be very special.

Side Chick

In her blog about “4 Signs You’re The Side Chick,” Elite Daily blogger Alison Segel says you’re possibly a side chick if…

  1. You never get big date nights
  2. They never spend the night
  3. They are shady with their phone
  4. Their time is limited

“and…If you’re not being taken out on the weekends, then someone is. You know your partner isn’t just sitting home alone, twiddling their thumbs, and watching Planet Earth. It would be nice to believe that, but it’s not true.”

You have your, “main chick,” and, your, “side chick.” In most cases, it pretty much sucks to be the side chick. Especially when you find out you’re the side chick after 6 months or more of strong, “dating.” More recently, this label has been glorified by a certain demographic of women. It’s actually pretty sad to see the amount of women who seem to covet this title because they are, “kept,” by the man they’re involved with. It’s a low level to-stoop-to, but some women are OK with it regardless.

Typically you’re a side chick from the get-go. It was never in his plan to make you a permanent fixture in his life. Or, sometimes… you can become the side chick as time passes. During the process of dating you, he meets a woman who he is more compatible with, but he wants to keep you along for the ride for his own selfish reasons.

Unknown Friend Zone

This label is actually very easy to detect, but hard to admit. This is when a man places you in the friend zone (permanently) and you don’t even know you’re in that mofo! Yep… you skate along like everything is sweet, you two are hanging out, doing fun activities together… why? Because he genuinely cares about you and loves spending time with you… but…. only as a friend. You’re his home-girl, his people, his partner (not the kinda partner you want).

Tell-tale sign of being in this zone is when you go around other friends of his and he introduces you as….what? His friend.

In Conclusion…

There are many more labels out there. These are just a few of the main ones that men use.

It’s up to you to decide what label you wear. Best way to find out, is to ask that question… “What am I to you?”

Make sure you ask him at some point (even if it’s not day 31). This way, you can have a clear idea of what current (and future) direction the relationship is headed.

Dating Chronicles: Answered Prayers

Last week, I told you about Mr. K in Dating Chronicles: Take Two. He was right after my love Mr. J that I spoke about in Dating Chronicles: The Filler. Nice guy, but I was 0 for 2 in the dating area.

Mr. K and I parted ways shortly thereafter. We had fizzled within seven months of dating. Casual communication through email was all that was left. My communication with my filler was slowly fading to black. I had served my purpose and truthfully he had served his. I was once again alone.

Dating casually. Not allowing anyone to go beyond the first date because they weren’t what I was looking for. Frustrated was how I was feeling. Would I ever meet someone that I could really have a connection with? Love. That’s what I yearned for.

I kept my dating profiles up because I was paying for it. I went about my life. I asked God to help me. To send me a man that would love my son and I as though we were his own. A good man who made good money and was kind. He had to be taller than me and he had to have a sense of humor.

I also asked God to temper my lust. Since lust was probably the reason that I hadn’t found someone. I focused on other things instead of men. I focused on my Munch, work and civic obligations. I was in a good place. I was 40 and God had given me clarity so I was ready to step into my destiny.

I then opened my profile one day and saw a simple “Hi” in my message box from Mr. C. Trying to make more of an effort, I clicked his profile and saw only the basics. No long statements of what he was looking for or what he wanted. I did notice that he wanted children. Umm, what?

I wasn’t having any. I was 40. What did I look like? I already had one and I know I put in my profile that I didn’t want anymore children. I went back and checked my profile just to be sure. Yep, it was there. Plain as day. Does not want children.

I responded with a simple “Hi, how are you?” A couple of days later he responded and thus we exchanged a few quick messages. He gave me his work number and asked me to call him. I did.

He sounded sane. He sounded normal. He sounded kind. I sighed. We just talked. Talked about everything and nothing at the same time. Goals, dreams and our families. We talked and I begin to learn that he had a sense of humor. He was genuinely a nice guy. So, I told him. I told him that I didn’t want any more children and I know that his profile said he wanted some but it wasn’t something I was willing to do.

He said okay. Okay? He said he was fine. He had one and I had one so he didn’t want anymore. Then why did you write that? He said that he would have been willing had he met someone who didn’t have children. I sighed. Okay. But, I had to tell him something else. I would rather it happen now than later, but I needed to be honest.

I told him that I wasn’t giving him my cookies. That I was practicing celibacy. I told him that I had been fooled and fallen in love with men that weren’t always honest after making them wait months for sex only to realize that it wasn’t working. I asked him was he okay with it. I wasn’t going to change if he wasn’t, but I wanted to know where his head was.

I had spent so many years allowing my boundaries to be sacrificed that I just wasn’t going to do it anymore. Clarity and peace came about when I took back my power. At 40. He responded “So, you want us to live like God intends and not have sex until marriage?” Yes. Yes, that is what I want. He said “Okay, I’m cool with that.”

And he was. My boundaries remained intact. My mind was wondering where this beautiful soul had been all my life.

He began to court me. To woo me. We spent hours talking each day. Working out together and just getting to know each other without sex. He became my rock. See, I was in a season of unrest. Everything in my life was falling apart and I felt like I was drowning. Another month brought another tragedy. It continued like that for 8 months.

He was my lifeline. My prayer partner. My friend. I had to go home to Tennessee to visit my dad. Before I left he gave me a gift. A devotional. He said, “Sometimes I struggle to find the words to encourage you and I’m hoping this devotional will encourage you.” Wow!

He cared about my soul. He was making me love him. I didn’t yet. I was in strong like, but I was falling. I told you about it in Missing Him. He was restoring my faith in men. He showed me the respect that I so needed. He understood where I was coming from in regards to my need to honor my commitment to God.

I liked that. I never had that. He was different.

However, it wasn’t all flowers and romance. He wasn’t the type of man that opened doors for me. He didn’t do that, but what he gave me was so much more. He gave me honesty, transparency, respect and laughter. That meant more to me than anything.

It’s been a slow courtship. We went on our first date in October of 2015 and began a relationship in September of last year. Slow and steady. We’re still celibate. We’re still celebrating our love for each other and you know what? I couldn’t be happier.

He was proof of my answered prayer. I had to go through the trials of finding my king because I would have never appreciated who he was. I was doing like my girlfriend said an entertaining jokers.

Not anymore. He’s not perfect and neither am I. We just fit in this space that we’re creating. It’s love, loyalty and respect. I couldn’t ask for more.

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Want to keep in touch? You can find me on social media at the following links: Twitter @mskeeinmd, Facebook page A Thomas Point of View and my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/mskeeinmd/.