The Issue of the Ring

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.

The Issue

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.

My Take

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:

Ring 1

Ring 2

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.
Money does.
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?

 

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/.

 

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What Is Love? ❤

In case you’re wondering what love is, please check out this beautiful post on what love is…

Love is not just exploring good qualities of each other. It is also accepting flaws in him/her with an open heart and guiding them for their betterment and progress. The real happiness lies is seei…

Source: What Is Love? ❤

Carry

I carry you in my dreams.

I carry you in my heart.

I carry you in my soul.

I carry you.

When nights get rough and your days are too long

I need you to know that I will carry you.

When the world seems to be beating you down, just know

that I will carry you.

When you get tired of running from all the wrong things and you want to run to me

know that I will carry you.

I will always carry you.

You and I are one.

One can’t be divided.

So, when this life you’re living is too much for you to do it alone

I ask that you come on home

Where I will carry you from here to eternity.

 

 

This post is part of the Daily Prompt. The word for today is carry.

But, Before You Say Yes

I was at the nail salon last month talking to other clients. You know how women do? We meet another client in a beauty salon or nail bar and it’s like we’re old friends. That’s what happened. We started laughing and talking about dating, marriage, relationships and children. One of the women that I met asked me after hearing that I was divorced “Did you like being married?” and “Would you ever do it again?”

I paused. I’ve heard this question asked before. It’s usually beautiful and younger women who’ve yet to meet the man of their dreams wanting to hear some romantic notion of princes and white horses. I smiled and said “Yes, I liked being married and Yes, I would do it again.” She smiled. You could tell that’s what she needed to hear as she navigated the dating jungle.

I laughed. I said, “But, before you say yes I need to tell you some things.” I began to tell her what I wished someone had told me in my 20’s. I began to tell her things that I felt that every woman should know and do before they say yes.

Here’s what I shared:

  • Know and love yourself first. You must really know who you are as woman. What you like and what you don’t like. Who you are and what you value. Those should never change. Relationships change. People change, but your perception of who you are and what you want shouldn’t change. Otherwise, you will become The Walking Dead making your partner feel unsure of who you are and what you want. He will be confused by your needs and this will create problems. He won’t know if he’s pleasing you or some other version of you. Hold on to who you are and love her with all your might.
  • Take time for self. It is so easy to get married and forget the world. Forget your friends and forget that you had a life prior to being a Mrs. But, you can’t forget the self-care required to maintain a healthy relationship. If you forget to take care of you and are so busy running around like a chicken with your head cut off it will put a strain on your relationship. Go for lunch with your girlfriends. Go get your nails done. Go out to dinner with your sorority sisters. These things are designed to keep you focused. Plus, it is a great way for you to appreciate the wonderful man you have at home waiting for you.
  • Know when to communicate. I know as women that sometimes we want to jump in and tell our spouse all about our day. Everything that happened from beginning to end. Jane is so jealous of me. She hates me. I can’t believe I got passed up for that promotion, etc. Give him time to unwind. Allow him the opportunity to come into the door, get a drink, put his bag down, put his feet up and watch ESPN for an hour. Letting him have that unwind time will give him the opportunity to listen to you and be focused on your needs because you’ve just met his needs.
  • Let go of your past. We like to hold on to men from past relationships that we know still want us even though we are married. We may not call him or talk to him regularly or consistently, but we know we would drop it like it’s hot should our relationship start to go south and our husband cheats on us. Trust me sis, let it go. Let go of your past and don’t allow people in your present that aren’t there to respect your union at all times. Even in the worst times. Temptation is a b*tch and trust me when I say you don’t need that distraction.
  • Stay connected. It’s easier said than done, but trust me when I tell you that you will go through life changes. You may lose your job. Your spouse may get sick. You may have children. You may get extremely busy at work. Any of these things may happen, but you need to remember to stay connected to your spouse. This can be accomplished through your five senses: sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch. Examples:
    • Sight – See your spouse and compliment them immediately. Brighten their day by saying “Hey sexy. How did I get so lucky?”
    • Smell – Learn their favorite fragrance and make sure that they never run out. They don’t wear cologne? What about their favorite soap or body wash? Whatever the scent, make sure you know it.
    • Hear – When they tell you things that they need. Listen for their needs and don’t be quick to respond because you know your point is more important. Hear what they need/want and try to meet those needs.
    • Taste – Spend time in the kitchen together. You don’t like to cook? Neither do I but we can do fun things like chopping up fruit/veggies and having a date night blindfolded to make sure that we are in tune with each other. It’s something pretty hot about tasting pineapples and chocolate while blindfolded.
    • Touch – Often. That’s it. People need touch. Loving touches. Quick pinches on the butt. Rub their head. Embrace them from behind. Hold their hands. Give him a quick foot massage. Touch him. Let him know that you are present in the moment.

Now, I had a lot more advice to share, but I didn’t want to overload the sister. I’m a work in progress and I learned more after my divorce than before. Great relationships take two people working selflessly to make their partner happy. Are you up for the challenge?

For Better or Worse and Addiction

Okay, yes I’m a celebrity (in my head) and I follow news of some of my favorite celebs like we’re best friends (sssh, don’t tell anyone) so it was a shock for me to read that my BFF (I told you I’m pressed) Khloe Kardashian Odom had called off her divorce to Lamar Odom. Why, I screamed? He’s an addict girl! You can’t fix him. Hell, Iylana Vanzant can’t fix him! You deserve better!

And then I paused.

Marriage is supposed to be forever right? I mean don’t vows say in sickness and in health? I mean does sickness include addictions where the person doesn’t believe that they have a problem. What if they never want to get help? Many addicts don’t see it as a problem. They can handle it.

But, when you addiction destroys your family then how the heck are you handling it? I mean I know love is supposed to transcend all, but is it reality that you stay with the person that is destroying you and your relationship? I don’t know. I wouldn’t stay if the person doesn’t want to get help. I mean Khloe covered up the lies for so long until the women started coming out talking about his affairs and his drug use publicly. She took the criticism.

She fought for her marriage. She left. She dated other people. She delayed and prayed that he would get help and hoped for a reconciliation. It didn’t happen. So, she filed for divorce. She still loved him. That love was reconfirmed when he overdosed at a brothel earlier this month. She flew to be by his side because she loved him and was still legally his wife.

She decided to fight for her marriage again and call off the divorce. Fight for the man that she loved. Fight for him as he geared up to fight his demons. The same demons that keep him trapped in a perpetual cycle of addiction. Lamar has a long road ahead of him and Khloe is fighting for her man, but she’s not naive. She’s in love. She wants her marriage. She wants that man. I just pray that this addiction doesn’t destroy her.

I will openly admit that I’m not as strong as Khloe. I grew up in a home with an addict and addiction is no place for a child. My dad is still an addict. I am an adult now and will fight for my dad, but a child should never have to endure that so I get where Khloe is coming from. I pray that she can stay the course and I pray that Lamar gets the help he needs.

Lamar Odom and Khloe Kardashian
Lamar Odom and Khloe Kardashian

Dang, I’m Slow

That’s what I thought as I read this great piece entitled “The Slow Fade: 8 Ways Guys Break Up Without Actually Breaking Up”. I realized that “I’m Slow and I was Slow Faded” by Mr. K. The guy actually went through all eight steps and I couldn’t even realize that I was being slow faded. How lame is that?

The author made a point of telling women that you’re not slow you’re just dating a pathetic loser. It didn’t really help me feel better. How could I miss the signs? How could I believe what this guy said? How could I not be more observant of his behavior?

“Here are eight behaviors to watch out for so you can hold that slow fader accountable, demanding he give you the respect and dignity you deserve.

1. He doesn’t call as much. Okay, this behavior is one of the easiest to write off because lots of guys claim they don’t like to talk on the phone (even though they do all day long). If yours is one of those guys, he will likely let you know early on, leaving himself the excuse he needs should he ever need to use it. Chances are he will. But because you have been duly warned, when the frequency of calls does return to what it once was before you told him how much you “love” to hear his voice, you overlook the slight, inadvertently forcing him to step up his game. In response…

2. He texts and emails less. Makes perfect sense, right? You are no longer in the “honeymoon” phase of your relationship, those first few dates when you are going gaga over one another (or at least one of you is) and are thinking about this new person more than you can stand. That’s what you tell yourself at least. You convince yourself you shouldn’t expect as much from him as you once did. Wrong. You should. But you take what you can get anyway until you notice…

3. His texts and emails become short and not so sweet. Remember those cute smiley faces? The XOs? The sweet sentiments? They are but a distant memory now. Instead, “thanks” is his new emoticon, leaving you to scratch your head wondering if you have done something wrong. Nah, you rationalize. It’s just that…

4. He is suddenly very “busy.” Yeah, that’s what it is! Work is CRAAAZY for him now. That explains why he hasn’t called, texted and emailed as much as he used to and didn’t make weekend plans with you until the last minute. But you’re happy he’s busy because…

5. He has so many family problems. A nasty divorce. A crazy soon-to-be ex-wife. A witch for an ex-girlfriend. Screwed up kids. And you, the hopelessly devoted girlfriend fool you are, don’t want him to suffer any more than he must. So you become even more understanding when…

6. He gets sick. Things have gotten SO bad for this guy he can barely function (or so you think). He has been so “busy” with work and family problems that now he’s not feeling well as a result. Poor thing. Which explains why…

7. He looks less appealing. All of a sudden he’s disheveled. Verklempt. But right away you feel guilty for even thinking such a thing about the guy who once treated you so well and say to yourself instead, “Maybe I’m not being supportive enough.” Whereupon he says to himself, “Maybe I’m dating Hellen Keller.” So what does he do?

8. He acts like a dick. He has finally reached DEFCON 1. His last resort. The part where he does something reprehensible in addition to all of the above which he is already doing in unison. It is his “plus one” (if you’re that fortunate). Maybe he cavorts with another woman. Perhaps he makes you the butt of a private joke you are not yet clued in on. Even worse is if he helps himself to one last kiss goodbye (or more) which you are unaware really is goodbye.”

See, Mr. K went through all 8 steps and I didn’t have a clue that I was being slow faded. I just believed his BS. I actually thought he was a nice guy and just going through a particularly difficult time. Nope, he slow faded me. I just wasn’t smart enough to catch on.

I even sent him the article and you know what he said, “You think I’m pathetic.” Really dude? Deflection. A tactic used by the manipulator. He then sent me a text saying that I reached out to you last week and asked you out? Umm, for what? So, I can sit across from you rolling my eyes thinking how stupid I was for trusting that you were a good person? I’ll pass.

So, ladies if you’re being slow faded now make sure you recognize the signs and confront the man. Spread the word and encourage men to just be men. Be up front and tell a woman if you’re not interested. Don’t make up excuses and then try to weasel your pathetic self back into a woman’s graces because you’re busted. Have some dignity!

Cheating-Quotes2

 

Him

I told him that I pray every day and every night for God to strike him dead if he’s not who he says he truly is. If he’s not as wonderful and interesting and humorous as I find him. He laughed.

I know it’s a sinner’s prayer, but I am tired. Tired of meeting “possibilities”. I want a reality. A reality of something genuine. A reality where I am genuinely happy to see your picture flash across my screen. So, this is why I pray for God to strike down those that aren’t who they say they are.

He says, “There are nice guys out there”. I say, “Where?” He laughs. It is in the innocence of his laugh that I tell him that I am not amused by the choices. The choices of those that seem to have no morals, ethics or even religion. Those that try to run game. Those that think that I should be lucky to have met them. Ugh!

He says that he is a man of his word and values honesty. He wants women to have the same. I smile. I overshare. I tell him of good things, bad things and those in between things. I want him to know that I was a former spoiled brat that grew up. That life is about learning lessons. I’ve learned a lot, but there is always room to grow. I am growing.

I tell him that in Tuesday’s episode of “Being Mary Jane” that I learned that I am a lot like Mary Jane. In the episode her younger brother says

“you are a complicated and challenging woman and that is beautiful but you got to be able to recognize that not every man is cut out to deal with that. When everything comes easy for a man the last thing he is cut out to do is  fight for a difficult woman.”

I asked him does he agree. He said, “Yes, I agree. It’s true. I won’t fight for a difficult woman.” I sighed.

He said, “But, you’re not difficult.” I said, “but some people would say that I am.” He says, “Well, I don’t find you difficult. But, I guess it would depend on what is difficult. Whether or not you were pushing me away then I would not fight for that.” I said, “Okay, I understand.”

So, I smile and inwardly pray…

“Dear God, please let him be who he says he is, does what he says he’ll do and if not, just strike him dead!”

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