Category Archives: Relationships

The relationships category provides man to man advice to young men of color. There are topics and discussion that men need to discuss. This category provides a platform for that firm discussion.

My marriage argument…Part 1

In the company cafeteria, all the next generation ambitious black people would sit together during lunch talking about dating, office racism, who got fired or hired and the next happy hour or event. While conversing the fellas would give a conservative nod or silent greeting to the corporate honeys walking by and likewise the women would give some eye hustle to suited dudes and both men and women would confirm with their friends in the circle the eye candy passing by. Only when the subject was heavy all attention was inward and this was one of them.

This one dude says, “Marriage is work.”

I usually allow opinions to float over me but when there’s a right or wrong issue or an opinion that I feel passionately enough to support or defend, I welcome the fight.

I paused while I swallowed to get my response out and said,

“No…marriage should be maintenance, not work…at least not all the time.”

I knew what he was going to say and right on que…

“How do you know?! You never been married.”

I said, “Yes but I’ve bought a car before.”

A collective group chuckle, “What?!”

He dismissed, “Man you don’t know what you’re talking about.”

I said, “When I’m in a relationship I invest in it…flowers, wine tastings, Kennedy Center events, dinners, weekend trip to the islands, etc.”

As I looked at the women getting all geeked on what I just said, “Don’t get it twisted, I hope that my woman would reciprocate in some why, I’m not going to be just putting out and she don’t do something.”

Someone (female), “Something…I know what that something is.”

“No…it has little to do with sex, it has everything to do with her just showing her appreciation somehow.”

My “adversary” continued, “If you looking for 50/50 you’re going about it the wrong way.”

I said, “Not at all…that’s NOT what I’m saying, it’s never 50/50 and if you keeping score you shouldn’t even be in a relationship at all.”

“What I’m saying is maintenance has to be frequent, just like when I own a car, I detail it, change the tires, tune up, premium gas sometimes, change the brakes, armor all, hell sometimes I even shampoo the inside. I expect the car to have a clutch or some major repair once a year maybe…on a bad year twice but not every damn month. If I own a car that is repeatedly in the shop, why would I want to keep it?”

“Just like a woman…if she’s arguing, lying, not communicating why would I keep her around? What cause she looks good?!  That’s gets old quick!”

Someone joked and said, “Is it a new Jag?”

I laughed and said, “That’s my point…you buying the Jag cause it looks good but it costs more money to maintain that Jag.”

“Just like some women that are high maintenance…you choose to deal with that bullshit, that’s your fault.” (I knew that statement was a little aggressive so I backed off…the group is usually clowning or joking but I’m passionate about these black family subjects.)

I softened up and said, “Look…I’m not saying anything about your marriage or your woman bro, I don’t know her or you, but I know I’m not keeping a woman or a car that’s causing me more stress than it’s worth.

Why would anyone stay with a man or woman that is not helping you or reciprocating love in the way you recognize, why the hell would you marry them?!”

“Look I’m single and hella happy and marriage, for me, hopefully will be just as happy as my “single-hood.”

A woman in the group whispers something about perfection…or me looking for perfection. I responded, “I’m not looking for perfection…I’m looking for perfect for me…chemistry, you can’t fake that”

A woman said something serious at the end of the table that had everyone’s attention. I could tell it was serious by the body language of the group…I didn’t hear it so I said, “Say it again…I’m sorry.”

A woman was pointing her fork at me, a woman I knew to be newly divorced with 2 kids.

Holding her fork up pointing at me she said, “So if you’re not looking for perfection, how did you get to 45 and never been married or have any kids?”

All eyes were on me…

My marriage argument…Part 2.

MPM

“I don’t want to be married just to be married. I can’t think of anything lonelier than spending the rest of my life with someone I can’t talk to, or worse, someone I can’t be silent with.”
Mary Ann Shaffer

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Repairing relationships: Apologize and Forgive

I saw the video of the Magic Johnson Isiah Thomas’ reconciliation.

First…I really didn’t know they had beef, but when I saw the emotions it validated that whatever happened was real.

Second…I was happy to see these two iconic black men, moguls even,  humble enough to apologize. I have nothing but respect for them.

Just think, these two friends, for whatever reason, stop being friends for all those years. Sometimes we get in our feelings about things that really don’t matter, sometimes.

Maybe it mattered at the time and you can be mad but to hold a grudge for years…it’s really not worth that amount of time.  The misunderstanding, communication, joke that went bad…in the grand scheme of things, whatever you’re mad about, it’s not that important to hold on to the anger, let it go.

So…when you’re with your family this holiday season, remember the things that are important, forget the things that are not. I just thought it was important to share.

Lastly…they both joked at the end of the hug, the apology lasted about 3 minutes and it was over that fast. Think of the decades of missed memories between friends, resolved in 3 minutes.

Joyous Kwanzaa, Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas

MPM

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Love is bigger than sex

DISCLAIMER: I am older, so my views may be seen as old fashioned. This is my opinion based on what I’ve done wrong and in some cases, where I’ve lost the most valuable friendships. My hope and goal, as with all my blogs, is to help you not make the same mistakes I have.

(Deep inhale) Here we go…

LOVE

I think our society is driven by sex, money and power. We try to fit love in there but love has been getting it’s ass kicked by those three. Who you chose to love is really up to you, even if it’s the same gender. I’m surprised to say that but that’s the world we live in. I’ve come to the conclusion that love shouldn’t have prerequisites. If you love someone, it shouldn’t be because they treat you nice or you view them as perfect, because no one is. So the quicker you find the imperfections, the faster you’ll determine how much you love them, if you even love them at all.

It’s taken me several years to recognize that love doesn’t fit in a box. It’s just love. You have to just shake your head at the disappointments because a person, just like you, is going to mess up, going to do something that doesn’t make sense, going to disappoint you

…but you still love them.

To get to that echelon of love, you have to know someone…more importantly you have to know yourself. People have been telling me for YEARS that you should be friends first…for YEARS! I didn’t listen, I just want that good stuff. LOL

The hardest break up I had was in December. It’s hard to call it a break up but we had something really special. I contributed to the break up in my own gemini ways, but I was deeply disappointed at revelations about my friends behavior. It was hard because I had grown to love her, as our friendship matured our sex become something more. My neighbor asked, “You’re the break up king…why was it so hard to get over her?!”  I said…

“because we were friends.”

SEX

Before you have sex with someone you should understand what it is. Whether is lust, love or just recreational you should respect the difference. Emotions confuse people and lust, or a recreational romp in the bed gets misinterpreted as love…it’s NOT.

As I said earlier, you have to know yourself.

When you’re young and your frenetic hormones are out of control it’s hard to discern what feelings are involved. Sex is an intimate thing, it’s private, and it’s really no one else’s business. As my mom says, “That’s between the both of you and God” If you do have sex with someone, keep it to yourself. Don’t even tell your best friend. To be quite honest, people are going to know anyway. People are going to see your body language and how you interact with each other. It may very well be obvious (shrug shoulders).

My point is our society makes everything about sex and no emotion. That’s not real. Your emotions are real and tangible. How you think, feel and live is a most important thing in your life. Don’t make everything about sex, cause it really could be nothing.

MPM

“Sex is always about emotions. Good sex is about free emotions; bad sex is about blocked emotions.”
Deepak Chopra

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Sing, dance, rap, party to the negativity.

I came downstairs this morning and do what I normally do…turn on Bounce TV.

On the weekend I usually turn on the tv and have it as ambient background while I cook breakfast. My pooch follows me to the kitchen and I notice the video countdown is on. I don’t have cable so this is the only “ethnic” video programming.

I was on #7 Mary J Blige was singing about how she’s tired of some man.

Then #6 was a song entitled, “My girls” by some female group…emphasizing the solidarity of her girls.

Then #5 John Legend talking about love; Family, Country, Heterosexual, Homosexual…love.

Then #4 Beyonce “Lemonade” the video was the “Queen B” walking around breaking up cars, windows, fire hydrants, singing about how she was betrayed hurt by some, you guessed it, man. I thought queens behaved a little differently but that’s just me.

Then Bryson or whatever his name was, talking about some woman that hurt him. This dude is about 20 years old complaining about a woman…please.

What number are we on? Solange talking about rebuilding and trying…wait, honestly, I don’t know WHAT she was talking about.

Finally number #1 Bruno Mars…he was partying about money, vixens,  Vegas and Versachee(spelled it wrong on purpose). I actually like this song.

Ok…out of ten videos, what do you see? I’m not talking to you ladies, I’m talking to the young men. I’ll tell you what I see…a bunch of negativity about black men and this contentious culture with our women. I’ve done my share of hurting and disappointing women, so I’m the last person playing victim here.

My point is this;

  • All women are not gold diggers.
  • All women are not hoes.
  • All women are not cheating.
  • All women don’t dress like strippers.
  • All women are not ALL women.

Regardless of what you see on tv, regardless of what may be around you, treat women with respect. Even if they don’t act like they deserve to be respected, respect them anyway. As a man you have to be the better person, you have to lead by an example of a gentlemen. You have to want better for yourself. If you can’t make someone happy or make their lives better, keep looking. Don’t stay there making each other miserable. Find someone that will appreciate you doing something for them. Sliding off topic…anyway as I said, “ethnic” programming…and that’s just what it is…programming. That’s an interesting word because that’s exactly what’s happening. Well, don’t let videos, tv, social media or the news convince or “program” you to be negative. Keep your perspective positive. Remember All women are not All women. Find that one that’s different and put a ring on it. I need to take my own advice.

I could be blogging volumes about all the other negative influences but I chose to take a bite out of this one.

MPM

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