When Your Prince Turns Into A Punk: Could You Continue To Date A Man If He’s Proven Himself To Be A Coward?

January 3, 2013  |  



Could you continue to date a man once he has been discovered to be a coward?

I ask this question after a lazy, uninspired New Years Day in which I spent the day underneath a heavy blanket, watching a film – or three – via Netflix. One of the movies I took in was this complete yawn about a young white engaged couple and their guide traveling across the Caucasus Mountains in central Europe. I’m not going to tell you the name of the movie, because I’m about to give a major spoiler about the film, which basically centered around watching white people hike and talk about boring things for 90-minutes. Seriously, I would only recommend watching this one only if you have trouble sleeping. Anyway, midway through their trek, the couple was approached by three men with a gun. As their guide and the gunmen exchange words in their native tongue, the boyfriend/fiancé, for whatever reason, decides to interject himself in their conversation and ends up with a face full of gun. Being the fast-action hero, the fiancé instinctively hides behind his lady. But then quickly recoups his balls and moves in front of her.

Needless to say, the boyfriend’s instinctive act of self-preservation, albeit only a few seconds, created some awkwardness between the two, with the girlfriend giving her fiancé a well-earned wall of silence. I imagine that if she could, she would have cursed him out and stomped away. But she was in the mountains, literally in the middle of nowhere, so she had to see this trip out with him. I won’t ruin the rest of the film for you, but let’s just say it involves more walking and boring talking. While the film itself left lots more to be desired, I will say that I’ve been thinking about that particular scene since viewing it. I don’t know if presented with the same situation of being shoved in front of a gun by my boyfriend, if I would have had a reaction much different than the female character. How could you not feel betrayed?

A couple of years ago, I was hanging out, having drinks with a male friend of mine at one of the local bars/lounges. We were talking and sort of flirting (not too much though because he had a girlfriend at the time), when I must have said something he took as being offensive (whereas I’m just speaking my true mind). He smirked, shook his head and confessed, “You are real controversial, you know that? See, that’s why I couldn’t date you because I can see me having to get into lots of fights. And I’m a bit of a coward…”

First off, how this conversation deviated into him playing out a hypothetical relationship between him and I is beyond me. I mean, I thought about it once too, and like him, I have tons of reasons why I rejected the idea in my mind as well. I didn’t feel the need to tell him that. But more to the point, there is nothing attractive about a man admitting to being a coward. And now I have another reason why I couldn’t date my male friend.

I make no apologies for placing high value on my partner’s ability to make me feel safe and protected. He doesn’t have to be Michael Jai White; shirtless, greased-up and karate kicking dudes up and down the block. I mean, that might be nice, but a sista isn’t going to hold you to that. I just need to know you will have my back. Like an ex-boyfriend of mine, who appeared really close to getting his butt kicked after trying to defend my honor from some disrespectful and foul-mouthed brute. His confidence was shook and in the car ride home he asked me, point blank, if I thought he was a punk. I told him no, but I will admit that inside, I felt a little differently about him. Different as in, if I’m ever in trouble, I should call 911 instead of him. But I got over it quickly and actually appreciated him more for at least attempting to put a disrespectful someone in their place. To me, that’s a sign of a true gentleman.

I get it; fight or flight is a well-documented part of human life. And that means that everybody has punked out at something during some point in their lives. But you can’t be dropping babies and hopping over balconies, leaving your family behind during movie theater shootings, a la this father of the year in 2012, or in the case of this film, having your natural instinct mean pushing me in front of the barrel a gun. I think a guy who even subconsciously puts you in the line of danger deserves to be banned from seeing your ladybits for the rest of his life.

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  • UcaintBe2Clear

    You honestly think survival instinct is going to yield to some ridiculous age old connotation of male-female relationships? Seriously?

  • No to Mr.Sensitive

    I broke up with my ex for just this reason. I felt like more of a man than he was. He was so sensitive And whimpy.

  • Kam

    The writer seems to be the type to charge up a situation then run expecting her male company to come in and save her. As my parents used to tell us growing up, don’t let your mouth write a check your @$$ can’t cash. I expect my husband to use common sense in dangerous situations, not be a fool especially if I’m the one who started it. As Johnny Depp said in Public Enemies, “Better to be a live coward than a dead hero.”

  • Wow

    If anytime you go some place with a man and he has to end up fighting due to you starting sh*t then I agree with the guy friend of yours. People don’t fight these days, they have guns, they have friends with guns. So you want a man to basically risk his live behind your foolishness? You would probably be better suited with a gang banger or ex-con who considers fighting over “anything” as an everyday norm.

  • Kaori

    People are better off once they realize that they only have themselves to rely on. I expect the same of men and women. I don’t think that just because a man is a man, he should be more brave or fearless than me.

  • KIR12

    Plenty of, no the majority of, White, Hispanic, Asian and East Indian women not only date but marry cowards. 🙂 Fact!

    The problem with wanting a tough guy is many young black women who don’t understand the difference between false bravado and humility/commonsense end up with wannabe fake thugs or ex-cons as their baby daddies. Let’s face it they ain’t marriage material.

  • Say What?

    Okay am I the only one wandering what the author said? I had a friend who used to date a girl that was nothing but drama and her “speaking her mind” was code for interjecting herself into things that weren’t her business causing arguments then being the first to say that she would go get her boyfriend to whoop someone’s behind. Needless to say he left her after his THIRD uncalled for black eye.

  • Ms. Kameria

    When being out with mixed company I’ d like to think I was being protected in any situation, but it’ s also about being smart enough to know when to walk away. People are getting killed over too much foolishness, so I wouldn’ t call it being a punk.

  • Na Na

    My answer is….yes I would feel differently and its actually the main reason I am no longer seeing my ex. although we had a good relationship, no cheating beating and crazy stuff, he would do stuff like ask me pick him up in my car from the train stop that was literally on the corner of my same street because “he wasn’t from around here”. He would make faces at me wen some man pushed me on the train asking why did I say something to him? Oh no brother….you gots to go!

    • Lynda

      @ Na Na – Lol.. I used to date a guy like that as well. He thought I lived in a seedy neighbourhood & used to ask me to do the same thing. If your relationship was basically good for the most part – you should have kept him. Yes, it’s a bit of a turn-off but with all the crazy stuff we are expected to put up with as women (cheating, abuse, pathological lying, chronic under-achieving, etc.,) being a bit of a “punk” sounds like a dream! Lol..

      • Na Na

        You know what Lynda, I thought that at first. Then I realized even if I’m not getting my head bashed in I still deserve a relationship that fulfills me, makes me safe and is a pleasure to me. I was brainwashed after a an abusive relationship to think that not abusing me was the gold standard…but that’s the minimum. So needless to say I had to let that go and make room for a love that fulfills all my needs.

  • FB

    The story reminded me of Snooki, from Jersey Shore. While I have never and will never hit a women, I thought her situation was pretty funny. She was running her mouth until the guy punch her butt and knocked her out. If I had a girl who try what Snooki did, you better darn sure I wouldn’t fight for you. You have to know when to shut up and walk away.

  • Sagittarius81

    Man I dated a guy for 2 months and one day I was at his house and a mouse got caught on a glue trap he had in his closet and he was afraid to go in there and see the thing. I looked in there, got the broom and dustpan and threw the little critter out, left his house, never talked to him ever. Sad part, he was 27 at the time and I was 22.

  • leilue

    The best bet may be to take some self-defense classes. I mean… just because a man can fight does not necessarily mean the issue at hand is worth fighting about, or for that matter the trouble. Case in point: learn to walk away from foolishness!


    The earth is polluted with these cowards

  • bluekissess

    Men in my age group are punks. They’ll be afraid to mess up their Jordan’s so I doubt it. Which is totally sad and unacceptable.

  • Daisy

    *smirk* and all the cowardly guys flock to the article to defend themselves…

    • IonlySpeakTruth

      Probably true..but my t-shirt business flourishes because of $hit talking women and their “tough” boyfriends….. R.I.P t-shirts are my bread and butter….just saying… You gotta know when to hold ’em and know when to fold ’em

  • FB

    You know……I was talking to a girl and said something similar to her.She asked me if she were to start a fight with s dude, will I get her back. I simply told her ‘Look at me 5’4″ 130lbs, and you’ll start a fight in a club because I am there with you. No, I will be out the door before you start the fight.’ I would take a bullet for my family, but don’t go look for it and expect me to take a bullet for you.

  • Clue

    “He smirked, shook his head and confessed, “You are real controversial, you know that? See, that’s why I couldn’t date you because I can see me having to get into lots of fights”

    Somehow, I feel like this guy was spot on in his assessment of the author

    • Clue

      Related to this, I have no problem with a woman wanting her man to defend her and make her feel safe…..but those women who are prone to talking slick and letting their mouths get them into trouble (which seems to be what dude above was hinting at) and then want their man to bail them out…those women need to learn not to get into fights they are not capable of finishing themselves

      • joe

        that would require accountability.

    • Stanley Dada

      The dude knows the other side of the story that she’s not willing to tell.

  • Stanley Dada

    Fight or Flight?
    I’ll take the flight. Self defense in America doesn’t work the same for black men.