Are men “more emotional” now? Or, have men’s emotions been repressed all this time by socialization, tradition, norms, rearing, and conditioning?
A few questions
Why do you see men dying much faster than women outside our reluctance to visit the doctor? Why do you see so many men dying of depression and hypertension? Why do you see far more men (than women) shooting up schools and committing mass murders?
In his article about male violence, Jesse J. Prinz of Psychology Today says:
Men perpetrate about 90 percent of the world’s homicides and start all of the wars. A recent article in a prominent science journal contends that evolution has shaped men to be warriors. More specifically, the authors claim that men are biologically programmed to form coalitions that aggress against neighbors, and they do so in order to get women, either through force or by procuring resources that would make them more desirable. The male warrior hypothesis is alluring because it makes sense of male violence, but it is based on a dubious interpretation of the science.
The numbers are alarmingly slanted towards men vs women. You see men in movies and on television running around killing 1000 people without dropping one tear. That is the reality men have to live up too. Be like that guy! Hard, no-fear, no pain, no hurt. Be sophisticated and savvy like James Bond, never waver, do not let any man beat you at anything.
Well shit… I hurt, I feel pain, and I wanna cry (sometimes) dammit. So call me a punk. Call me less than a man.
Then, you say….”he’s being too emotional.” You look at this man, as, well… “less than a man.” Why? Because he’s in touch with his emotions and the other men aren’t? Or, maybe because society doesn’t let men cry. So, as result, you see repressed emotion on the field. The only emotions these men show is anger and aggression. That’s what we pay for right? Gladiators. Well, even Gladiators had feelings.
To make matters worse
You see young boys being taught they shouldn’t cry, don’t be a punk, you’re a sissy if you express yourself, don’t talk too much, “get-up (from a fall) that didn’t hurt!” Meanwhile we embrace the exact opposite in women. Women live longer and more fulfilling lives as a result. Societal pressures have doomed men. This was inevitable. Women have begun to jilt their societal and traditional “garb” and have traded up for business suits, careers, expression, aggression, leadership, stabilization of finances, and independence. I applaud these women for having the courage to go against the grain.. and I side-eye, sneer and laugh at the men that don’t accept them.
Basically, there is a shift going on. Not women becoming stronger than men. Not men becoming more “feminine.” Just humans realizing that we were created to evolve.
“Hurt” and “pain” are communicable diseases that can go undetected for years before
a person seeks help.
Some of us are carriers and don’t even know it. We hop into the dating pool, or, we get into a relationship thinking that we are ready, when we are not. Then, we choose the same “type” of person and get hurt every-single-time. Or, we exude a certain type of energy that attracts the wrong (or the same type) of person. As result, yielding the same outcome over-and-over again.
Denial is running rampant
There are 7 reasons why we’re single, and no matter how many times we blame the opposite sex, the common denominator is you.
To make matters worse, what do we do next? We project, blame, and/or live in denial.
“When you refuse to look in the mirror and face the truth, I call that denial. You can deny the truth about why you’re single, consciously, or subconsciously. Meaning, you lie to yourself, and others, but you know what you’re saying isn’t true (conscious). Or, you lie to yourself and others, but you truly believe what you’re saying is true (subconsciously).”
So what’s next?
Meanwhile, you keep on dating and infecting other people with that hurt and pain.
Sometimes you infect people who are are building up their strength to get back out
there. Sometimes it’s people who have open wounds (which are the easiest to infect). Other times it’s the same sex. Women infecting women, or men infecting other men, with bitter and resentful feelings about the opposite sex.
Why spread the hurt and pain to others?
You’re hurting, and it feels good to know people around you feel the same as you do (misery loves company). You haven’t truly forgiven from the heart, you’ve only forgiven in your mind (you may not have done that either). Consequently, you’re still holding onto the pain and hurt others have inflicted on you.
Although it should be mandatory, forgiveness is a choice.
It can be very difficult to forgive someone who has hurt you. You may even want those who aggrieved you, to feel the pain you feel. Forgiveness isn’t about being, [fair.] It’ about being, [free], and it definitely isn’t about spite. When we don’t forgive, we indirectly punish those who don’t deserve it. In the meantime, we are still connected to the person who initially caused us pain. Consequently, they still have power over us because, they anchor to the lowest depths of our emotions.
Media doesn’t exactly help your cause
I see it every day in the way we post, talk, and interact. Also in the songs we listen to, and the TV shows we watch. When you’re hurting, and in pain, you listen to songs that apply to your current situation. You also tend to click on articles, and social media posts that more associated with what you’re going through. Especially the posts that invite negativity about the opposite sex.
Negative posts, television shows, and/or music all contribute to your mental state. You may not know it, but you are being suggested negative energy subliminally. The more you watch or listen, the more it impact you. Ever watch a movie for 2 hours and come out thinking negative? I have.
My advice? It’s simple, stay away from negative media. as a whole. In addition, surround yourself with positive people, go to positive places, and do positive things. Lastly, always be mindful of what you’re saying. Spoken words and affirmations are very powerful.
It’s finally time to heal
You will never find what you’re looking for until you heal. You will always look at
men and women in a “slanted” way until you seek help. You will always seek that
love from another, but they can’t heal you, they can only help you. The majority of the work must be completed by you.
I’ve been there…
I’ve been that hurt man infecting others. I had to first take a long break, so I could mentally breathe. Understanding where I was in life, who I was as a man, and what I deserve were a critical aspect of my growth. I also had to realize how I was impacting myself in a negative way, and what I truly needed in order to sustain my evolution going forward.
Most importantly, I had to learn to love myself first and foremost.
No wonder relationships don’t last, and dates are so short-lived. A lot of us want that microwave love. It’s all pre-packaged and ready to go within 30 seconds. In our fast-paced lives, we don’t want to slow down, mute the distractions, and cultivate our relationships. We don’t want to invest the time and effort needed to really learn and understand someone. As a result, once you open the package, the picture on the box is hardly the way it really looks inside. Yet we’re shocked. It was a 30 second meal! What did you expect? We want slow-cooked taste, in 30 seconds or less. We want a 5-star restaurant feel, in drive-thru efficiency. And, we will keep getting the same bad tasting, falsely advertised, negative results… until we learn that nothing worth having comes pre-processed.
Slow Cook Your Dating Experience
When it comes to dating, most of us want the result to end in companionship (or marriage). So why in the world do we expect symmetry to occur without doing the, “work” involved?
You know what? Let’s not use the word, “work.” Let’s say, “process.” Because, while dating, you are going through a process. A process that cannot be on microwave speeds. This process is slow-cooked.
Remember, you are getting to know an entirely new being that comes with new experiences, personality traits, pet peeves, habits (good and bad), etc. So, that process takes time. The amount of time is relative, but no matter who it is, they will need, “time” to get to know, and understand. A rapport needs to be built. Channels of communication need to be established. You simply cannot get to know someone on microwave speeds. Slow-cooking is the only way.
Step 1: Let It Marinate
Like Martin Lawrence says…”let it marinate.” Let your dating experience, “soak.” Let all the seasoning absorb. This way you will have time to process what you’re doing, and what you’ve learned. As a result, you will make better decisions about moving forward.
Also, this will give you the necessary time to appreciate the process of getting to know a new person. So many people say…”I can’t stand starting over.” Trust me, I totally get that. However, if you make dating fun, it can be a worthwhile experience. Enjoy the conversations before the date. Get as much information as you can to learn about the other person (make sure you ask the necessary questions listed here )… then, “let it marinate.”
Step 2: Pre-Heat Your Oven
Now is the time where you will prepare for the first date. If you did your homework, asked questions, provided information, shared and opened up freely, you should have a good idea of who it is you are about to go on a date with.
If you spent enough time in marinate-mode, you should feel a bit more at ease about spending time with this person. Anxiety will always be there, don’t worry, it’s normal. However, the amount of time wasted on dating will be limited since you are on slow-cooker speed, vs microwave.
As daters, we tend to have a few conversations and jump straight into romantic situations (microwave speed), when, we need to cultivate first, to see if this person is even a good complement for us. They could be a good person, but this doesn’t mean they are a solid match for us.
Step 3: Slow Cook The Process
When I say, “slow,” I don’t necessarily mean, “go-slow.” I mean, take your time. So, the time that it takes is totally up to you. Just don’t microwave through the process and expect the results to be same as slow-cooking.
When you slow-cook food, the seasoning is allowed to penetrate. The meat becomes tender and more flavorful. We all know, there’s nothing like a slow-cooked meal.
That being said, make sure you don’t let the, warm-and-fuzzy feelings get the best of you. Stay focused on the goal, and always keep things in perspective. Discuss your goals and aspirations, pet peeves, your family, and most of all, talk about how a relationship looks to you. Give the other person a detailed account of what you need (and some of what you want). You probably shouldn’t do all of this on the first date, and hopefully you’ve discussed a lot of these things before going out. However, if you didn’t, make sure you ask some of the most important questions, and generate conversation around them. Don’t get, too serious. Do what feels right in the flow of the dialogue between you two.
It’s a new year. It’s time for a new you. Not literally a new you, but you must revamp and revise who you are for 2018. You’ve got to have gone through some things that have enlightened you in 2017. What did you learn? Can you now take that lesson learned and apply it in 2018?
I’m setting some basic goals for me with regards to this year. I want more experiences, to create more memories, to take more photos and to grow both personally and professionally. I am grabbing the bulls by the horn and proclaiming that 2018 will be my year. The year that I will own my voice.
We all have a voice. I have a voice. You have a voice. You must be a force to be reckoned with. It’s time to get serious about you. The real you. The you that cries at stupid commercials. The you that actually loves romantic comedies. The you who realized that you made a mistake by ending the relationship with the last person you dated.
that’s the you that it’s time to reckon with. It’s okay to have made mistakes, we’ve all done things we wish we hadn’t. But, you can’t stay buried in the pain or in the poison of your misfortune. Own it and move forward. There’s no right or wrong way to live your life. You just have to be determined and unmovable in your goals and desires to elevate yourself. Get off your butt and put one foot in front of the other. Whether physically, emotionally or spiritually it is time to move.
It’s 2018 ya’ll and there are just some things you shouldn’t trust. What specifically am I talking about? Women and men that don’t have friends. It’s time for the truth…You can’t trust men or women that don’t have friends.
Why would you date someone that has no one in their life that loves and holds them accountable for their behaviors? Friendships are a must with anyone over the age of 10. There is no way you can meet a man or a woman and they don’t have friends and you be cool with it. That is creepy as hell.
Friends hold you accountable. They know all your secrets and love you in spite of your faults. They trust you and you trust them. It’s a bond not solidified by blood, but more important because they don’t have to be there for you.
I swear close friends are mind readers. Do you know how often I’ve called my closest friends just to talk when in actuality something was on my mind? They instantly knew it. They heard it in my voice. They reminded me that they knew me better than that and even though I may not want to talk about it now, they would be there for me. They would have my back. They would be there when I felt ready to let them in.
Man, I don’t know where I would be without my friends. When I’m wrong. They are there. When I’m right they are there. When I’m just barely holding on by a thread and my mind is trying to break, they reach in and grab hold and love me through my pain.
How can someone not have that in their lives? What have you done to make people not want to invest time and effort into you? I’m not saying you need to have a lot of friends, but you need to have one. One person that is not related to you that can speak of your character.
Think about this…many people who apply for government jobs and have to do clearance have to list character references. Let’s not forget about friends/family members who are going through custody cases. Who can speak to you? Who can reference your character and talk about who you are as a person?
You don’t have anyone? Then figure out what the issue is and get to making friends. It’s 2018, there is no excuse to not have friends. If you don’t, how can we trust you?
Last week while I was taking my amazing break (thank you to my guest bloggers) there was a video with a picture going around about a sale that Kay Jeweler’s was having for a ring that cost $24.99. The video that was accompanying the photo said that apparently everybody on this gentleman’s timeline had gotten engaged with this particular ring that cost $24.99. I’ve attached a picture of the ring for you to see.
Whether or not a woman should accept a $25.00 engagement ring. If the woman did accept it, she should just be happy that someone wanted to marry her. If she wouldn’t accept it, she was called everything under the sun including: a gold digger, hoe, shallow, miserable, bitter, will never have a man and can’t get a man…all because she refused to accept a $25 engagement ring.
Mr. C and I had a lengthy discussion about this the other night and it got kinda heated. Primarily because I simply told him that I wouldn’t accept a $25.00 engagement ring. I explained to him that an engagement ring symbolized a man’s commitment and promise to marry you. A man marries for particular reasons: not wanting to die alone, procreation, increased wealth, financial benefits (think tax breaks), love and happiness.
That being said, does a man believe that is worth $25.00. If that is the best that he can do, then why is he marrying you? I’m in my 40’s and I’m a firm believer that we don’t get in relationships to struggle and try to build up people in our 40’s. A man should be built up by the time he’s 40. Can he have setbacks? Absolutely, anyone can, but I’m not dating someone in a broke stage. Get yourself to a better stage where you can afford to date me.
That being said, in the past engagement rings were given as a symbol of a future promise to the world that the woman was betrothed to another man. He put a ring on it. He removed her from the proverbial market. She was his. He was hers.
Fast forward to today’s standard and the ring debate is out of control. Engagement rings are optional for some and required for others. However, if you should choose to marry a woman and propose with an engagement ring, wouldn’t it ring true that you would know the woman that you are marrying? That you know her taste. You know what she would love.
When I first started dating Mr. C a couple of years ago, I sent him a picture of the ring that I had designed for my next engagement. Was it forward? Probably. But, I did it with a purpose. The purpose was to show him my expected standard of the promise of marriage.
Here’s what the ring looked like:
The price tag was $14,358.51. Mr. C was floored. I laughed and said that we could go to the Diamond District in NYC and get it made for about $8,500. He didn’t say anything. Fast forward to earlier this year and he asked me “Do you think it’s fair that I spend $8,500 on an engagement ring and I have college tuition to pay for my son?” I responded “You could finance it.” LOL.
But, I was serious. Later this year we had a genuine conversation and he stated that he wasn’t going to spend $8,500 on the ring. He gave me a number and we haggled over the price and I think we settled into a good number. I honestly can’t remember. It really doesn’t matter because we have time.
It’s not the cost of the ring in our case. It’s the expectation that you will marry me and I told him that I was fine with a diamond band and no engagement ring. Been there done that. But, a ring whether an engagement ring or band is the promise of his commitment to provide for me and our family. If he can’t afford to provide, then why should we marry?
Now, before you think that I’m a gold digger understand that love doesn’t pay the bills. Tell me what bill you can pay with love. Being broke isn’t cute. I’m not about struggle love or poverty penis. Love is an emotion and not a tangible piece of currency. I like this quote by Bougie Black Girl on her FaceBook page:
Love doesn’t pay for diapers
Love doesn’t pay for gas
Love doesn’t pay the rent or mortgage
Love doesn’t buy food
Love doesn’t put clothes on a child’s back.
Love doesn’t keep your lights on.
Love doesn’t pay for childcare.
Love doesn’t pay for doctor visits
Love doesn’t fix a flat tire or repair an engine.
Love brings people together. Money makes sure a marital union is financially secure. Money creates a legacy and passes down multi-generational wealth. Stop demanding Black women to settle when Black men and everyone else won’t.
We need to stop believing that we can’t have expectations for better. My ex-husband and I were young and in our 20’s when we got married. He still got me an engagement ring that cost $2,500 and he was only making $35,000 at the time. That was .07% of his annual salary before take home. We were poor. We were young. However, he was determined to get me the ring that he knew that I loved.
So, if he could do that in our 20’s why would it be acceptable for someone to think a woman should be happy with a $25 engagement ring. I spend more than $25.00 to fill up my gas tank. Many of us are walking around with shoes that cost more than $25.00. If you can spend more than $25.00 to get into a club, pay for drinks, on tennis shoes, on tint for your car or for your clothes, why shouldn’t I require more for a commitment on my finger?
Talk to me. What’s your take? Would you marry someone who proposed with you with a $25.00 ring? Why or why not?
I once read a post about teen dating that made me reminisce about [my] past teen dating days… (which weren’t that long ago) by the way. I instantly started to compare how innocent dating was back then, to how ridiculously superficial and confusing it is now.
Social Media pressure
Reality TV pressure
Entertainment (rappers and vocalist) pressure
Subliminally sexual images and messages everywhere
The pressure our young teenage girls have to look a certain way
And the list goes on.
So What Do I Miss Most About Teen Dating?
What do I miss most about my teen dating days? Did we even date? Or did we just venture out into a concrete habitat and pursue convivial activities completely bereft of thoughts of our affinity for one another?
However, once the seed was planted (like the serpent telling Adam and Eve they were exposed) we started to feel the pressures of teen dating (“oooohhh ya’ll go together!!!”). It took away from the sweet and blissful innocence you felt when you would stroll around town together, venturing to the corner store. Me combining pennies and nickels to purchase a pack of Lemonheads I would gladly share with her.
Innocent laughter about random yet imaginative thoughts of days past and fictitious accounts of days to come. It was all there. I miss that. After hours of conversation, with some hesitation, finally conceding to the overwhelming narcolepsy weighing my eyelids south and shading my brown iris like a lunar eclipse. We agree to end this night, but neither of us wants that to be, so we, decide to play a game of, “count to three.”
“No you hang up,”
“No, you hang up,”
“On 3 hang up.”
I miss shared yet recalcitrant thoughts on paper of potentialities and possibilities of a future with her. Sweet looks from afar that garner a smile with a quick turn of her head, hiding as is if she was in a haze. Nervous tension and apprehension, hoping you didn’t notice her gaze. Indeed, I miss those ways… I reminisce over those days.
College-ruled sheets of virginal text, and solicitations of where we’d meet.
Do you like me?
Check, yes or no
Intertwined hands, smiles you could see from a distant land…
You damn right I’m your man. I want the whole school to understand…(and see) you’re with me.
This wasn’t fantasy, it was my reality… today it’s fallacy. Destroying the possibilities, of what-could-be, so organically, flowing end-lessly.
So I re-peat… “Do I Miss Teen Dating? Damn Right I do!”
That’s when it felt free.
Jay Thomas is an incredible blogger that commented on one of my posts last year and we’ve been following each other every since. He’s an incredible writer and lover of love. Isn’t that amazing? I love love too so it was awesome to realize that we have a lot in common. He will be a featured contributor to my blog in 2018 and I wanted to give you an idea of this man’s perspective on love. He’s real. He’s true. He’s open. To read more about Jay and to follow his blog please click here: Relationships Etcetera