My boyfriend and I are approaching our 2 year anniversary and I just turned 30 years old. I understand why so many relatives and friends are becoming increasingly more curious about when will tie the knot. As my elder no-nonsense cousin so eloquently stated during the early stages of my boyfriend and my relationship, “You’re not 19. What are his intentions?” It’s a valid question for me to consider.
I believe people are asking from a sincere place. They genuinely want me to be happy and they believe that marriage is one way to achieve happiness. They also want to make sure that I do it fast before time runs out and I can no longer give birth to babies. Many unmarried women in their mid-forties, who were focused on their career in their early thirties, regret the fact that they did not settle down earlier. Perhaps they want to ensure that I do not make the same mistake.
I get it.
But what I don’t understand is how some people feel the need to pressure you into making such a huge decision. We all know what pressure sounds like from our loved ones:
- When are you getting married? (asked each time you see her/him)
- When will I have a grandchild?
- My son needs a playmate. Please tell me you’re going to have children next year.
- You’re not getting any younger. You don’t want a high-risk pregnancy, do you?
Recently, my friend mentioned to me that she was done with relationships that are “long stories.” We all have friends who answer to questions about their boyfriend with a statement that begins, “Girl, let me tell you what happened yesterday!” Then, she proceeds to tell her version of a long story. The story can include a plethora of events, mostly ones featuring her boyfriend behaving badly. She may mention that she caught a questionable text message in his phone; he hasn’t been home for the past two nights; or that fact that she caught him in a lie. Long stories, according to my friend’s experience, never end well. Her advice: leave any man that gives you a long story and move on.
After she made her statement, I was trying to play devil’s advocate. I thought about my friends who are in relationships. Did any of them have a long story? I remembered a friend who got married recently. Her story was long until she became fed up with his foolishness and broke off the relationship. He changed and now, they are happily married. Continue reading
Someone had to do it.
Shoshana Roberts, a 29-year old actress residing in New York City, recorded an experiment on street harassment. She installed a hidden camera and had it record 10 hours of her walking the streets of Manhattan. She experienced everything from the casual “what’s up,” to the more threatening act of being followed for several minutes by numerous men. She did not respond to any of these comments, maintaining her composure, a straight face, and avoiding eye contact, yet the comments continued. In a matter of 10 hours, she experienced 108 catcalls from men of different racial backgrounds.
As I watched Shoshana’s video, I remember my own experiences of being catcalled. Although I have been harassed on numerous occasions, I vividly remember one that was the most threatening to me. I was a sophomore at Spelman College at the time and meeting friends across campus one Friday evening. A man in a car with three other men approached me in a Black SUV. “Hey,” he said as he was driving alongside me. Continue reading
Okay, so I am the only one of my friends who is unmarried. Wait, God. Did I miss something? Maybe it’s the guy who sat next to me in church 3 months ago? The one with the nice smile and straight teeth. The one who made it a point to greet me during tithes and offering and make remarks about the message to me. The one who asked for my number so we can have Bible study but for some strange reason, I got a strange feeling in the pit of my stomach and turned him down?
Waiting for your special someone is not an easy feat. Let me tell you.
Last weekend, I met a guy who made my skin crawl. Needless to say, a date with him will not be on the agenda in the near future. Given this, I still find myself stressing about why I am not meeting anyone. I have tried everything. I have read all the relationship blogs. I go out; I meet people; I’ve even joined an online dating site. Nothing is happening.
If there is anything that life has taught me in the past 20-something years is that the best things come easy and in its own time. There is no need to force a relationship or meeting the right one. Perhaps I am not meeting anyone because today is not the right day.
My guy is wherever he is getting prepared for that day when I will walk into his life. And what am I doing? Worrying. What if I missed him? Continue reading
1. We play the damsel in distress routine in order to get what we want.
I was participating in a summer program in Chicago a few years ago. It was my first experience in a big city, so riding the train and finding my way around was a bit of an adjustment. My homegirl and I didn’t have enough money to ride the train home one day. So, what did we do? Play the damsel in distress routine and got a free train ride home.
2. We enjoy the thrill of getting numbers just as much as men do. And nope, we have no intention of ever calling you.
I had just lost my job a couple years ago and was feel really depressed, so I did what any girl would do. I got dressed up in my cutest outfit and went to a party. I had a ball dancing and talking to all the single men there. I was exhausted by the time I came home, but I was happy too. I had three number from three different men I had promised to call, but never did. Continue reading