What My Mother Didn’t Tell Me About Dating

mother-tell-about-dating

I could probably name 100 things my mother taught me about women, love, life, relationships and marriage. However, she neglected to tell me what I’d face once I decided to start dating. I’m sure she would have told me more had she known. Also, there are certain lessons my father should have taught me. That being said, by the time I started dating, the rules of engagement and the dating landscape had changed so drastically, that there’s no way she could have prepared me for this. And that, ladies and gentlemen is where I’m going to start.

The Beginning

I would say that I started, “real dating ” when I was a freshmen in college. But I started back in high school. Needless to say, even back then, dating was a big mess. Although, it was much more simple. I could take a young woman out (broke as I was) to grab a $2 Whopper without the cheese (and if she was special) she’d get cheese on it.  Yeah, cheese on your burger meant you were pretty dope back then. All that being said, I was still learning how to approach a woman in a serious way. I remember sitting on the stairs of my dorm and thinking of my father, and how I couldn’t call him and ask him what to do. So I fell back on the teachings of my mother and there wasn’t much I could use other than…be myself (at least, that’s what I thought).

That was a good start. Although, a lot of the guys who were, “faking the funk,” were getting all the women, I remained calm, and stuck with what she taught me.

Being A Conversationalist Requires Skill

Listen, I don’t know about your parents, but my mom didn’t tell me that conversation is actually something I needed to be good at when engaging with a woman I liked. Sometimes I would find myself like… “so…. what … am I supposed to say now?”

Steve-Harvey-blank stare-things-my-mother-didn't-tell-me-about-dating

Sitting there at a loss for words, blank stare and all, It was painful! It was gut-wrenching. Some grown men still deal with this issue. But I learned a value lesson. Great conversation is a skill. Some people have it, some don’t. But you can learn how to-be great at it. Problem, was, I was still green as hell and super bold. Not a good mix when you have no idea what to say.

One time when I was hanging out with the fellas (while in high school), we went to the arcade and of course they wanted to talk to girls. On the way there I was dreading the disaster yet-to-come. Once we arrived, they went straight to the girls. I tried to play it off and act like I was that much into a game of Centipede. But then the craziest thing happened… I walked over and tried to kick-game to a girl! Huge mistake. That was not me, and I got dissed because I didn’t know what to say. Of course, I never did that again.

Through each conversation, I learned a new lesson, and through that, I developed my conversation-swag. Now, I can talk to anyone, about anything. And it only took me 10 years ((sarcasm)).

Be Yourself Even When It’s Hard

As shown above, I had a hard time in my teen and post-teen years because, I truly had no idea what I was doing. No one told me about the pressure to-be someone else. I also didn’t know that being me would be so hard. I am still the same silly cerebral, slash, creative I was back then. When you’re a freshmen in high school, women were not checking for a guy like me. They wanted the rough and tough guy. The Al B. Sure look-alike. Sure there were some who thought I was cute, but I am dark-skinned, without the good hair. Yeah… good hair. But I’m tall (that was one superficial thing I had going for me).  But it wasn’t enough. And I wasn’t the type of guy to yield to peer pressure. Be-yourself-things-my-mother-didn't-tell-me-about-dating

I wore Timbs, baggy jeans, a New York Giants Starter jacket, skully covering my kinky hair, headphones with the foam cushions that you’d always lose, cassette tape that popped, and a yellow Sony walkman. That was me. Down-to-earth, musically obsessed, always staying true to myself. However, mother didn’t warn me about how lonely that would get at times.

Mother Showed Me What Love Looks Like

But she didn’t show me how to [give] love and affection. As soon as I turned 18, here they came. The women. the older, and the women who were around the same age as me. It didn’t matter, they came and I didn’t know how to handle them.

I went straight to college after high school and I remember when a much older junior  (we’re going to call her, “B.”) was after me like lioness after a Wildebeest. Every time I tried to get away, she would smack my back leg, I’d fall down and she was all over me. She was really nice, and the odd part was, all the men on campus wanted her. But, she wanted me! I wasn’t flattered, because I was too young and naïve to the fact, and couldn’t believe that this beautiful woman wanted a cornball.

She told me, “you have to figure that one out.” Really? That’s the best you got?

B, was always very affectionate, caring, and talked to me like a man. I knew how to accept that type of love and affection because my mother showed me something similar. That being said, I didn’t know how to reciprocate the love I was receiving. That was something she couldn’t teach me. Responding to the affections of a grown woman are, “man issues.” Needless to say, I was shy, apprehensive and very cautious. I even called my mother to ask her what to do. She told me, “you have to figure that one out.” Really? That’s the best you got?

When It’s Time To Choose, Do It Quickly (and wisely)

But, who teaches you how to choose? What if you have two or three women that really like you, and they’re all nice and showering you with love?

I’m a young man, I’m not ready for this! No one told me it would be this hard. I learned a tough lesson though…

“choose quickly or deal with the consequences.”

Women are not one to wait. And even when they act like they’re being patient, if you take too long, they will either walk, find someone else, or give you the 3rd degree. Oh and, they won’t tell you their timeline. So you just have to know that you’re taking too long by the mental clock in your head. Basically, you have to guess. And you don’t want to run out of time before you reach the goal or, GAME OVER.

Running-Out-of-Time-mother-didn't-teach-me-about-dating

Whatever you do, be decisive about choosing a woman… or, don’t choose at all. Just stay single, but let them all know your intentions. And that’s what I did. I stayed single. I didn’t have a steady girlfriend until my junior year in college. And yes, I choose her.

No More Meeting At The Corner Store

When I was about 15, I remember hanging out with friends at the corner store, cracking jokes, grabbing some Jolly Ranchers, a couple of juices with the aluminum foil top, and just hanging out. Then, a group walks in…That’s when I saw the most beautiful girl I’d ever seen.

She was dressed straight out of a Salt-N-Pepa video. Her over-sized gold painted earrings, black tights, red boots and 8 ball jacket made me reminisce the “Push-It,” video.  But that didn’t distract me… for the first time I was going to tell her how beautiful I thought she was.

That, was how it used to be. This is how mommy told me it would be. You see the girl, introduce yourself and the conversation begins. That was then. Now it is all about how savvy you are online. From dating sites to social media,

In 2015 Pew Research center conducted a study about online dating.  They stated that “1/3 of the people in marriages meet online.”

Now, you meet digitally. The innocent feelings are gone. People are now scared to initiate conversation. Instead of seeing the person live, they are online “catfishing.” Or, they are being dishonest about their relationships status. So you never know what you’re going to get. Dating in 2017, is truly a mixed box of chocolates.

My mother didn’t see this coming and quite frankly, neither did I. I miss the old ways of dating.

What Did I Learn?

In conclusion, I learned that my mother did teach me a few things about dating that I didn’t know she taught me until I was older.

  • Mom taught me, as a man I would have to stand alone as an individual (as a man).
  • If she doesn’t accept you for who you are, then she’s not worth it
  • How to love myself
  • She showed me what real love looks like

All the things I learned from her, including the lessons she didn’t teach me, all shaped the man you see today.

Thanks mom,
R.I.P.

jay-thomas-relationships-etcetera

 

 

 

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Dating And The Plight Of The Black Woman – Part I

dating-plight-black woman-love

When dating, the plight of the black woman is like no other. This isn’t intended to diminish the challenges and obstacles of any other race of woman. This is also not written to attack the opposite sex.  It’s written to bring awareness, understanding and empathy for a culture of women that has to overcome not only the unfavorable stigma attached to their pigment and the texture of their hair, but also, the negative character portrayal and barrage of stereotypical images of black women in the dating world.

Stereotypes of the Black Woman

To name a few:

  • The black woman doesn’t care about her body.
  • She doesn’t like her own hair.
  • They do not listen to their man.
  • The black woman is not marriage material
  • Black women have bad attitudes
  • Black women have negative attitudes
  • They don’t get along with other women
  • Black women hate white women
  • The women are gold diggers
  • She is always angry
  • Black women are ghetto and ratchet
  • She talks too much
  • Black women are bitter and heart-broken
  • They are lazy baby-makers
  • Black women can’t keep a man

Of course, none of these insidious and damaging characterizations of black women are true.  However, it is important for you to realize how these stereotypes (or any stereotype) impact the dating landscape and the overall psyche of a black woman.

Origins

Black Woman-Dating-Thinking-Plight

Based on a study conducted in the winter of 1999 by Laura Green of Virginia Commonwealth University. Sambo, Jim Crow, The Savage, The Mammy, Aunt Jemima, Sapphire and Jezebel are major causalities that result in stereotypes centered around black people and black women.  In addition, the stereotypes of black women go as far back as slavery days and have stalked black people like a specter and/or evolved into modern-day thought.

Negative Polls About Black Women

Black women are beauty personified. However, black women have been degraded since slavery. Even so, by their own men.  In video poll conducted by Buzz Feed researchers, called, “Do You Have A Racial Preference…” 2.4 million heterosexual interactions from the app, “Are You Interested.,” were used to determine preference. Users were classified by their gender and race.

The study revealed:

  • Black women are the least desirable among all women.
  • Black men responded mostly to women of other races, even though black women were 3 times more likely to respond.
  • Black women are the least replied-to group.
  • Black women are also the most likely to respond when compared against other races of women.
  • Black women respond 25% more than other women.
  • A similar survey by OkCupid revealed that black women were the least replied-to group.
  • 1 out of 2.9 men respond to black women

 

More on that OkCupid survey

Back in 2009, the basics of race and attraction looked like this:

men
—non-black men applied a penalty to black women
—while black men showed little racial preference either way

women
—all women preferred men of their own race
—but they otherwise penalized both Asian and black men

Here’s how the exact person-to-person statistics look: Focus on the Black men rating and then look at the Black women rating.
I gather a few things from these numbers.

  • Black men are willing to seek love outside their own race willingly.
  • Black women are not as willing to do so.
  • Black men rate black women least desirable at -3%
  • Black women rate black men, “most” desirable at 16%
Dating-statistics-Black women
Photo Credit: OK Cupid

 

Some things never change…

  • Black men are still willing to seek love outside their own race willingly.
  • Black women are less likely to do so than they were in 2009
  • Black men rate black women least desirable at 1%. Which is a slight jump from 2009
  • Black women rate black men, “most” desirable at 23%. Which is a 7% jump from 2009.
  • Black women are the only race to rate black men, “positively.”
Black Women-dating-statistics-black men
Photo Credit: OkCupid

Continue reading “Dating And The Plight Of The Black Woman – Part I”

Podcast 06: Knowing When It’s Time To Let Go

knowing-time-let-go

I want to share my 6th podcast with you all (I’ve been on podcast hiatus for a few weeks contemplating the universe and it’s creation)… I believe that oftentimes we want a thing so badly, we’re willing to go through hell to get it. The fact that we waited so long, fought so hard, that we don’t want to let it go when we finally have it.  I’ve been that guy.

Have you ever been in relationship or dated someone for a time, only to find out you should have let them go long before you did? The signs were there, but you held on? Or maybe you had separation anxiety and you were too fearful of being single again.

In today’s podcast, I will talk about the obvious (and not-so-obvious) signs of separation anxiety. Also, when you should stay, when you should go, and coping with hanging on to a relationship past it’s expiration date.

Please click on the stream below to listen:
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https://www.spreaker.com/user/10276049/podcast-06-knowing

If you would like to direct download this podcast, please click play below.

The Fall Back

There’s no easy way to say this. I guess I just need to do it. To get it out there. To let you know that Mr. C and I have decided to part ways.

It’s true. I mourned it. I never thought that what we were building would be over, but it is. I am thankful for the memories. I am thankful for the healthy love and I’m thankful for the friendship. I wish him well in his endeavors and I’m sure he wishes the same.

I’m spending some time alone and regrouping because I do want love and a long lasting relationship based on shared mutual beliefs and principles. Although I thought my dating chronicles were over, it apparently is not. Such is life.

I decided to share this part of my life with you because my loyal readers who’ve been following me understood the trials and drama that I had with dating. They rejoiced when I seemed to meet a nice guy and gasped when he turned out to be a f*ckboy. But, when I met and fell in love with a kind and good man they sighed with me and understood the peace that my spirit felt.

I’m still at peace. It’s a process and while I’m optimistic that love isn’t through with me yet, I wanted you to find comfort in knowing that it is never too late. It’s never to late to give your heart back to love.

I believe in love. Love believes in me. I believe that what God has for me is just for me.

iyanla-vanzant-courage-to-let-go

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/.

The Curious Case Of The Often Ignored Red Flag

ignored-red flags

That notorious red flag. We’ve all seen them. We’ve all ignored them, and later acted like we didn’t see a thing.

You know the role, we’ve all played it well. When we act like the person we’re dating, changed into a different person overnight—when they were the same person we discovered them to be a week into the dating process. They never changed, they were always the same. Those blinders are semi-permeable. We see what we want to see at times, to, “enjoy the ride,” or, “maybe it’s nothing.” When in fact that red flag is, everything.

Dating Is Already Difficult

While dating can be fun, the process of vetting can be exhausting. There are countless dating blogs about the misadventures of each dater, where they chronicle each experience they’ve had. So, the challenges are well documented.

So how do we still fall for the, “banana in the tailpipe?”

“The mind is the most skilled Photoshopper. It can rationalize anything and paint any picture of anyone, depending on our initial perspective. There is a psychological phenomenon known as the ‘confirmation bias,’ where we are inclined to discard all evidence that does not align with our views and only keep those that do. And with a potentially toxic person, they have worked to create a false positive impression to worm their way into your heart. So even if they do something bad or say something that’s off, you may think, ‘He’s only this way because he went through X.’ This is when ticking boxes of ‘Is he rude to the waiter?’ ‘Is he nice to his family members?’ doesn’t work. He could be all that — the sleekest toxic people are. But underlying it, if he says things like, ‘So they’ll treat us better the next time,’ or he has a mean mouth towards some people, and if you find yourself justifying his transactional mindset or meanness, then it’s time to pause and step back. Our brains work overtime to convince us of someone who’s not good for us, even when our guts know it.”

-Perpetua Neo

A Few Red Flags

Their communication is spotty…

…and inconsistent. Nothing is worse than rarely being able to reach someone. I’m not just talking about a phone call either. I”m talking about all forms of communication. Direct messenger, text message, email, smoke signal, and carrier pigeon are all unsuccessful.

This is why communication is so important. This person doesn’t necessarily have to be doing anything disrespectful or unsavory. They truly could be busy, or bad with prioritization—which is another issue (or red flag).

They love to challenge you

This is one of my pet peeves. Every-single-thing you say, or do… they have to interject, show they’re better, offer some opinion to the contrary, or confront you . This reeks of

insecurity, or an inferiority and/or superiority complex. Don’t be surprised that when you find an inferiority complex within, that there’s a superiority complex hidden beneath it. One compensates for the other.

This person cannot bear the idea of their inferiority, so they overcompensate in other areas that will test you. They feel as though they are superior (in compensation mode) when

they are actually not. An example would be… a man with a small penis would feel inferior to a well-endowed man. So he will overcompensate with an over-exuberance of oral sex. Another example would be someone who truly feels they are inferior to another race of men/women, and uses every opportunity to tear them down, so they can feel superior. This may occur when you give a compliment to someone in the race they feel superior to. These comments may come off as jokes, or back-handed, passive comments.

They want to test your boundaries constantly

This person wants to see how far they can get you.

  • You tell them you’re not ready for sex, and they still try to seduce you, or engage in sexual conversation.
  • You’re not ready for them to meet your family, or children and they make you feel bad about it with a “guilt-trip.”
  • From the beginning you told them certain days you are unavailable, and they still try to plan outings or meet-ups on those days.
  • You may not like talking about how much money you make, so they ask you, “what do you do you?”
  • They may not like your style of dress, or the way you wear your hair. Or, even the way your house is decorated. So they “low-key” offer suggestions.

Your intuition, foresight and “Spidey-Sense” kick-in

Then, your gut tells you…

  • “Nah… something ain’t right…”
  • Then you say to yourself…”he/she is cool, but I just don’t know about them…”
  • You feel this tingling in your head that says, “THIS AIN’T THE ONE!”
  • She complains a lot, but maybe she’s going through something.
  • I’m always pulling my wallet out when we spend time.
  • Why are all her photos from the neck-up?
  • They talk about themselves all the time
  • He/she is always talking about his/her ex.
  • They are a total narcissist. Always pointing the finger, always projecting.

So what do you do?

You date them anyway. When they mess up, or manage to arch your eyebrow, you justify their actions. You overlook the red flags that are presented to you on a silver platter. Later on down the road, maybe a few months or so, things go Topsy-turvy, and you’re now in reflection/hindsight mode.

My point… signs are always there. Although they are difficult to read at times, they are always there. Some people can detect red flags immediately because they literally look for them. Others do not look for them and get, “caught slipping.” Of course there are those that fall in the middle. They see the red flags, question them, and when the line is dropped in the water—they bite. Typically this is because they want it to work out so badly, you love them… or, you’ve had sex with this person, and their judgement is clouded. Even worse, they know there’s something wrong, and stay regardless out of desperation, or low self-esteem.

Choices Choices

We always have a choice. We can act on the red flag(s), or, we can can ignore them. If you choose to ignore them, be ready to reap the whirlwind. Remember, not all red flags are truly red flags. It’s best to communicate your concerns. If the person becomes defensive, that could be another red flag. Regardless, you need to voice your concerns. Never hesitate. If you do, it’s to your own detriment.

You may find out that the red flag truly was a false alarm. If you never bring it up, you will never know until it’s further down the line. Even worse, you may never find out, or you may find out when you’re in a relationship, or married to this person. Obviously this isn’t ideal.

Keep your eyes open, and happy discerning!

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Not Even Superman Texts Faster Than A Pissed-off Girlfriend

woman-texting-text-fast

So…. yeah about that pissed off girlfriend… who texts so fast that you can’t even get one text out before she’s already sent 5. And I when I say 5… I mean 5 loooong texts. You know the ones… your cell phone provider can’t handle the length so they break them up into different texts while you’re still trying to compose one!

Yeah, I’ve been that guy… I’m a generally fast texter, but not one male on the planet earth, matches the raw texting speed of a pissed off girlfriend (or wife). It’s like, in that moment, nothing else matters to her. It’s gets so bad you just stop responding and wait for that brief pause, so you can press send on your 1 measly text.

I’ve gotten so frustrated, that I just put my phone down and let the notifications go off. At that moment when they stop… you pick your phone up, and another one comes through (face palm). So… most men know, when this happens, you have seriously f’d-up. So what’s your next move? You send back a text with 10 words, vs. the 10,000 she sent—and she responds…”that’s all you have to say?”

At that very moment, you have no words… just a blank stare.

Homer-Blank Stare

You start to type in your response, and you stop, read what you typed, and delete it. Then, you start again, stop, and delete it. This redundant process goes on for the next 15 minutes. No sent text, no reply, no rebuttal. If you do happen to press send, you’ve reviewed what you typed like the editor of a world famous magazine.

Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, it’s a bird, it’s a plane, no dammit, it’s your girlfriend trying to get her point across.

My advice?

Let her.

Every Woman Has A Label By Day 31

every-woman-label

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.

5 Tips on How to Handle a Break-up Like an Adult

Look, we’ve all been there. We’ve all had our heart broken at one point or another. It hurts. You cry. You try to rationalize. You go through the steps of grieving. Hell, if you go through a divorce it’s a lot more painful.

But, I digress.

The thing is that your break-up doesn’t have to define you. You may not have the person that you thought you would spend the rest of your life with, but you are still you. You are still breathing and you still matter. It’s time to reset and refocus on you.

How can you do that when you’re in so much pain? By moving forward and not looking back. By not lashing out. By not airing your dirty laundry. By staying in the positive in the midst of the pain.

Here are 5 Tips on How to Handle a Break-up Like an Adult:

  1. Unplug from social media – Mr. C and I always say how social media or rather the inappropriate use of it can cause so much havoc in relationships. Social media can be your best or worst friend so take some time away from it and unplug. If you’ve posted hundreds of photos of you and your significant other all over Instagram or Facebook, don’t start deleting them. You’re now letting everyone know that you’ve broken up. Just unplug. Take some time for you. Don’t start posting inspirational and depressing mess all over Instagram letting us know that you’re broken up. Keep it to your closest circle and stay away from social media.
  2. Don’t post revenge porn – In light of all the Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna mess I will tell you that as a grown adult (over the age of 25) you shouldn’t start posting revenge porn. The nude shots you shared with your significant other should be destroyed and not used to “get back” at your significant other. I don’t care if they cheated on you and stole your money. Keep your business to yourself and stop letting everyone see that you got played. It happens. To all of us. The last thing I want to see is your man’s penis or your woman’s vagina when I click on my Instagram feed. Save it for your safe. Refer back to #1 and just unplug from social media.
  3. Seek professional help – This is for everyone. You know that I believe in therapy right? Get some. Now is the time to use your EAP or get a referral from your health provider to discuss your issues. We all have issues. Let me repeat that for a second…WE ALL HAVE ISSUES. Deal with yours. Deal with it in a healthy way. Try the 3 C’s – cuss, cry and color. Let the professionals help you through this healing process. This is extremely important if you have children with the ex. They will forever be in your life and it’s best that you find a way to deal with them that doesn’t cost you losing your mind.
  4. Don’t lash out – Look if you are out here disregarding all this great advice I’m giving you and pulling a Rob Kardashian, don’t be surprised if people start offering their opinions on how you should handle a situation. If you had followed my #1 rule you wouldn’t be receiving a public admonishment about your childish behavior. But, you didn’t. So, if you do, why are you mad? Don’t put your business out there or people will feel the need to comment. Hell, even if you don’t put your business out there people may offer opinions about your life. But, you’re hurting and you don’t want to hear it. I get it. Don’t lash out by posting things about your ex. I don’t care if it’s true. If you didn’t go to court and make it public record why are you lashing out accusations? Breathe and get off social media now.
  5. Find a healthy outlet – Whether this be the gym, meditation, writing and/or taking a vacation. Just do it. Surround yourself with people who love you and want the best for you. Allow them to love and nurture the space around you so that you’re not wallowing in the pit of despair on your own. Take a vacation with your friends and focus on putting the past behind. You now have to focus on your future, but the stress of this break-up is still fresh and real. It’s okay. It may be that way for a minute, but if you find a healthy outlet for your pain you will get through it quicker. Trust me.

This whole mess that both Blac Chyna and Rob Kardashian are in is horrific. They are two grown adults who have a child together and got petty. The stuff on the internet never goes away. Even if it is a lie, you have your children seeing things that you’ve said about your ex. Stop it.

I know that you’re in a load of pain and you want to get back at your ex for some of the slimy stuff they did, but revenge is not yours. Just focus on you and keep it moving. Follow the steps and you will not be in this break-up turmoil forever. Joy comes in the morning.

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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/.

Co-Parenting: Dating with Kids

One of the hardest things to do is date when you’re a parent. Whether the other parent is active or not, I think we can all agree that it is hard dating when you’re a parent. Whether it is coordinating schedules, your child gets sick or you are exhausted, we all have things that get in the way.

When I started dating one of the things that I made a point to say to prospective men was that I was a mom first. That meant that you needed to be flexible with me when it comes to my son. I remember that I had met a guy and we had gone out a couple of times. He knew I was a mom. He was nice enough. Well, one Sunday he wanted to go out and I told him that I didn’t want too.

I explained that my ex-husband had sent me a text that Munch was not himself and not feeling well that day. My ex said that he would monitor Munch. I was asking for more information and he just responded “If he gets worse, I’ll take him to urgent care.” That statement stopped me. It meant that I wasn’t going to go out that night. The possibility that my son could be in urgent care was too much for me. My son had never been to an ER or Urgent Care without me.

This was the new me. A single mom and my son would always come first. Needless to say I sent a text back to the guy to say that my son was sick and I wanted to stick close to home in case he had to go to urgent care. The guy didn’t get it. He was disappointed and I never heard from him again.

Okay. His loss. Munch did end up going to Urgent Care and was later diagnosed as having shigella, but that didn’t matter. That man had broken a cardinal rule…being upset that I told you no over choosing to be a mom. I wasn’t hurt. I stood my ground. I was a mother first.

Dating is hard as hell whether you have a child or not. How are you expected to cater to your man and to your child too when you just meet someone? How are you expected to balance it all? The truth…carefully.

You have to meet someone who understands and values your commitment to your children first. I would never be upset if someone’s child was sick or they needed to be a parent first. Remember that I told you that I wanted someone to love me and my son as though we were flesh of their flesh. That was a requirement.

Mr. C is an incredible father who respects and loves the fact that I’m a mom first. He tells me all the time that I’m a great mother. Even when I feel like I’m doing everything wrong. He’s encouraging. I remember the first time I cried when I told him my fears about parenting. He soothed my spirit and calmed me down. He’s a parent.

We have two different parenting styles. He doesn’t believe in allowance (but secretly spoils his son) and I am going to start giving Munch an allowance. He believes that driving is a right of passage that a boy must undertake by his senior year in high school (I think it depends on their responsibility level). He’s strong and a provider and I’m a tough as nails educator who will dole out kisses and hugs and lots of encouragement and support.

Different. I think that’s why we work. He respects that I’m a mom first, a girlfriend second and knows that I will always trust his judgement. I am blessed to have met someone who gets that parenting is hard and it comes first. Someone that gets that I may have to reschedule plans or include Munch when things get in the way. He is flexible.

Find someone that encourages you to be a better parent. Who supports you in raising wonderful and good human beings. Who believes that there is nothing more valuable than creating and crafting the minds of the future leaders of America. Okay, well maybe that’s too much…but find someone that loves your kids as much as you.

 

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/.

Dating Chronicles: The Filler

I never thought that I would meet someone on-line. I never subscribed to the belief that my happily ever after” was out in cyberspace somewhere. But, that belief changed when I realized that no one was approaching me and asking me out for a date. I’m an attractive woman. I’m successful, sweet, charming and all those good things. Heck, I love me.

But, where were all those available men? Where had they gone? The ones that pursued me with a purpose before my marriage. I struggled with the fact that men didn’t approach me anymore. However, I had a lot of rules. What kind of rules? Well, you can’t ask me out if you are directly involved with my son through his school or social activities. No dating people from church. You can’t approach me if you see me with my son.

Yep, I laugh at this, but I was really limiting my choices on how to find a suitable partner. With all those limitations that I had placed on myself, then how would I ever meet someone? I had no choice but to try on-line dating.

Ugh, it was hard as heck. There were so many men that were fronting on their qualifications (looks, employment or what they were really looking for) that I became frustrated and uninterested. Every man was a potential waster of my time. Not everyone.

There were a few men that I actually met that I still keep in touch with. We weren’t compatible. It didn’t work out. Their issues and my issues made us an atomic bomb waiting to detonate. There were good times. There were bad times. There were just times.

I fell for one though. I started to love someone after my ex-husband. I didn’t believe it possible, but I did. He made me laugh. He made me feel beautiful, alive and sexy. He helped me regain the confidence of my youth. He said the right things. Most of the time.

He was a filler. A filler for the emptiness that I was feeling inside. I was lonely ya’ll. I wanted someone to love me and I wanted to love again. To trust again. To believe that I could find someone to be in a relationship with. He confused me.

Whew! He had it going on. He was both romantic and affectionate with me. Something that I never had. I never experienced a man kissing and making out with me like I was the most beautiful woman in the world.

Everywhere. In the car, in restaurants and on the street. He made me feel loved. I wrote about him a lot on this blog. He was the inspiration behind my short story By Faith. It was his love that I yearned for. I wanted him to give it to only me. Not the countless women he was dating. Just me.

I told him how I wanted more. I told you how I wanted More from him. He couldn’t give me more. I called him a collector, but he really was a filler. He was there filling my time and mind and confusing me. Here I was asking, wanting and pleading for more of a real relationship with just us two in it.

Begging. Why the hell should you have to beg someone for a relationship? If it was meant to be then it will be. No force. So, I had to unwrap my soul from his. Free myself from his hold. Recognize that I’m worth more than those free moments of passion. I deserve love. True love.

So, I ended it. I wrote about it in my post Death to Love. It was hard. He was sexy. He had swagger. He smelled so good. He was a great kisser. He was a great lover. He was all those things he should have been, but he wasn’t for me. His purpose was to fill in the gaps and remind me of how beautiful I am. To show me that I am worthy of real love and true love, not just with him.

And that’s what he did. He laid the foundation for me to know and experience the kind of love I deserved. However, it wasn’t that easy for me to break from negative habits and behaviors. I was lonely and craved sincerity and companionship.

I met someone after him. Different from the one that I loved and yet somehow similar. He was the perfect gentleman. Or so I thought.

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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/.