All Articles Tagged "love and relationships"

What’s The Point Of Committing In An Open Relationship?

August 24th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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You can go ahead and label me a prude because this is something I don’t understand. How folks can have an open relationship or open marriage and get in their feelings when someone steps out, I’ll never know.

I found myself talking to a girlfriend about this very topic after “news broke” Will and Jada were headed for a divorce. Obviously, this was as real as folks still claiming to see Tupac, so we didn’t give that rumor mill much thought. However, a person who did come up was a mutual friend that we’ll just call Candace for the sake of trying to keep things kosher.

Out of the three of us, Candace was married the longest but had no children. Both she and her husband can’t stand them on the regular and wanted to fund their vacation account instead of future college needs. Some might think that goes against the grain of what’s expected in a marriage, but for Candace and her guy, it worked. They are anything but traditional.

Now I do my best not to judge (that’s a lie, sometimes I don’t lol), but it took some getting used to Candace and her ways. You see, she and her husband might have been married for eight years, but more than half of that time was spent as an open relationship. I’ll never forget asking her about her arrangement because to me, it didn’t make a bit of sense.

“Soo when you mean ‘open,’ it’s like one of you will be faithful until there’s someone you meet you want to smash?” I asked.

“I mean if you put it that way, yes,” replied Candace.

Before you come for me I need to tell you that she is the one who talks about her marriage. I’m so thankful to have my little Martin and Gina situation going strong (eight years together, three years married and two babies…Jesus!) given everyone in my family is divorced. While I do close my lip about folks’ relationships, there was something interesting about Candace in her setup. We have that kind of dialogue where it’s OK for me to ask questions. I might be the loud one out of our group, but when it comes to love and relationships, just call me Charlotte from “Sex and the City.”

Personally, I don’t understand why people get into open arrangements. I guess if you want to justify cheating — or completely remove it from the table so you can stay together — it might make sense.

Well dear Candace isn’t talking much about her marriage theses days.

They’re headed for divorce.

Remember that conversation I was having with my girlfriend about Will and Jada? Well, around that same time I noticed it had been days since we spoke to Candace about the ending of her marriage. Given I no longer live nearby to pay her a visit, I felt a bit helpless about the entire thing. The girlfriend I was speaking to has zero sympathy for her and oftentimes will tell her, “you brought this on yourself.” Sure I could kick a person when they’re down, but I just don’t think it’s right. Candace always knew what I thought about open relationships and how they can come to bite you on the butt, so why rub salt in an already messy wound?

Apparently, she found out her soon-to-be ex husband was messing with the same girl that ended up starting a new relationship on the side. I assume it was OK for them to mess around with other people so long as there were no feelings, but how can you guarantee something like this doesn’t happen?

I guess you can’t.

Thinking about open relationships and marriages made me take a look at my own situation. With the divorce rate so high, is this one of the reasons why couples remove the exclusive label from their union? Does everyone cheat so much that you now need to be OK with extra people having access to your spouse? Should people who constantly forgive a cheating spouse consider themselves to be in an open relationship?

The fact that I have all these da*& questions further lets me know an open relationship just isn’t where it is, at least not for me.

Honestly, I don’t think you can really get mad at someone for doing something you deemed OK, right? Rather than have an open relationship — and possibly bring STDs and other craziness into your life — it might be better to just stay single.

Thoughts?

You’re Lucky I Love You: 14 Things Your Lover Did That Almost Got Them Killed

August 14th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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As much as you love your boo thang and think they were never do wrong in your eyes, just wait. Sooner or later they’re bound to piss you off in some way. Of course this doesn’t mean you love them any less. Here’s a look at some fun relationship pet peeves that might anger you while making you smile in agreement.

It’s OK to have some fun when it comes to being upset.

Don’t Spill Too Much Tea: 10 Things That Are No One Else’s Business

August 12th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Certain things really don’t need to be other folks’ business. Too many of us are spilling the tea when it comes to our personal lives. Yes, it’s important to open up at times, but that doesn’t mean you have to tell everyone in your life what’s really going on. Here are some examples of things you might not want to share with other people.

Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Not About That Life: Why You Shouldn’t Hang Around Couples In Constant Drama

August 6th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Does anyone else find themselves in the center of someone else’s argument that makes you ask yourself, how in the hell did I get here? I’ll be the first to admit that when it comes to letting folks in my inner circle, I am extremely picky, probably more than the government — and you know how hard it can be to land a job with them. This doesn’t mean I think of myself higher than anyone else. I just don’t enjoy drama, unless it’s on television.

I have quickly discovered that finding good friends you can double date with is impossible at times. Just when you think you found a good match, boom! It blows up in your face — including the girl, who you thought was your friend eyeing your guy because she doesn’t get the attention she needs at home.

We can talk about that another day.

Moving to a different state threw my social calendar in a loop. Not only did my husband and I leave our core friends when we moved away, but also had to find ways to juggle the needs of our child (we have since had another) and personal life. It was music to our ears when we were introduced to another couple who had a child. I tried my best not to whip out my phone and set up double dates into the following year. Things were OK at first as we had to navigate that awkward “getting to know you” stage. Just like a first date, you try your best to find compatibility that hints at a long-lasting relationship. This is where I think I jumped the gun as one or two things in common masked a whole lot of craziness.

Once the pleasantries began to wear off, I started to notice a change in the atmosphere. This couple who once was so happy to see each other would arrive to events separately — and even leave without uttering a few words to each other. At first I thought they had gotten into a fight prior to their arrival. After all, what couple doesn’t cuss each other out in the car from time to time before having to put on a smile for the public? I can understand that. But what was weird to me was that it happened every time we went out with them. Once at a mutual friend’s barbecue, the husband turned to me and asked, “why can’t my wife be more like you?”

Stop right there, it’s time to have a PSA. It’s never OK to compare your wife to someone else — especially in front of her face!

If you thought that was bad it turned out to be mild compared to the heat that came from their direction. There were times when my husband and I would literally sit between them as they argued back and forth about who made more money, whose mama was the worst (oh yes), along with that infamous question that sparked a Tyler Perry movie, Why Did I Get Married? Rather than take the easy way out by giving an excuse of how busy we were to hang, I made the decision to nip it in the bud.

“Look, I don’t mean to be rude, but we can’t get caught up in this,” I told the wife. “We’ll pray for y’all and everything, but this here is too much.”

I get that every couple goes through their ups and downs. As much as I want to think I married my Prince Charming, there are days when I question my sanity in saying “I do.” It happens. However, too much drama — to the point of being marriage counselors is not only bad for the arguing couple’s relationship (you don’t want all your tea in the streets), but also your own. Think about it: Have you ever spent time with someone who was always negative? After a while, it starts to lower your spirits a bit. If my guy and I are focused on trying to build up something good, the last thing we need is craziness in our inner circle that includes a grown man constantly throwing jabs about his wife behind her back.

There’s a big difference in my book between building each other up and allowing folks to zap your spirit — and with the divorce rate so high in this country, ain’t nobody got time for that.

What Happened To Taking Things Slow? 15 Signs You’re Moving Too Fast

August 5th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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There’s nothing more beautiful than the start of a new relationship. Things are fresh and you have the chance to get to know someone on a more intimate level. Hopefully, you take things slowly, as moving too fast in a relationship can cost you emotional and financial pain.

15 Things Couples Should Do When Arguing

August 4th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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There will be times in your relationship when things are great and times when you likely want to kill each other. That’s OK as long as you know how to take the good with the bad. Here are a few pointers on what couples should do when arguing.

10 ‘Small Things’ That Can Make Your Relationship Wonderful

July 29th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Fancy gifts along with wining and dining are great, but don’t guarantee a good relationship. Come to think of it, nothing can really promise you and your love are going to stay together, but at least you can try a few of these little things to strengthen your foundation.

The Couple’s Guide To Surviving Their First Vacation

June 30th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Everyone needs to take a vacation — that’s why we have paid time off from our jobs. Hopefully, you and your boo thang have considered riding off into the sunset. If this happens to be your first time traveling together, you might want to take a look at some of these vacation do’s and don’ts that just might preserve your happiness.

Enjoy The Season: The Couple’s Summer Bucket List

June 26th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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Can you feel the ocean breeze calling your name? Even if you can’t get to it right now, you and your honey can still enjoy an amazing summer. In honor of the hottest time of year, take a look at this fun summer bucket list of items you can try in your relationship.

Don’t forget your sunscreen!

Is There A Price On Love? Ways Your Relationship Costs You Money

June 25th, 2015 - By Tanvier Peart
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If there’s one thing I’ve learned about love, it’s that it doesn’t come free. There’s always a price to pay.

Aside from the emotional cost of courting a potential spouse, relationships can either make or break your finances. Luckily I married a man with a good heart and healthy understanding of finances. Both of us grew up in low-income environments (he is from Panama and I’m from Baltimore) that had an impact on how our family handled money. While my parents didn’t provide the best examples of saving and handling debt, his folks did the opposite. They saved what they could to provide for their immediate needs that led to their children attending college here in the States.

In the seven years we’ve been together (married for three), we had to talk seriously about our differences when it came to money. There needs to be honesty and complete transparency about money in your relationship — particularly your marriage. In the past, I was so used to keeping any and all financial issues to myself. This could’ve been a major problem if we didn’t learn how to work together. If someone isn’t being upfront about money battles happening behind closed doors, you may never know how to overcome your obstacles.

Couples also need to be on the same page when it comes to goals and saving. One person can blow their paycheck on unnecessary items while the other does what they can to build up their nest egg. For example, my guy uses his paycheck to save, pay bills and provide for our family. He rarely ever buys anything for himself. I on the other hand am not into shopping but do love to eat out weekly (I still cook though). This is an area where I had to cut back as we’re saving for a house.

It’s pretty amazing how much more you can save when you aren’t spending.

Sure you might not always be on the same page when it comes to money, but you do need to keep each other’s best interests at heart. Here are some common ways your relationship is costing you money.

Lack of interest in resolving issues. You’re going to have a major problem on your hands if you or your partner are dealing with major money issues and don’t care to resolve them. Some throw their hands up and are willing to carry debt — and pay the bare minimum — so long as they can live in the now.

One person pays for everything. Folks who are dating (married people too) need to take note. Unfortunately some people get into relationships because of financial security. The problem is you sacrifice stability when you constantly spend their money, or make them pay. Yes some couples have an arrangement (e.g one is the sole or main breadwinner), but for the most part, everyone needs to bring something to the table. No one wants to feel like they’re being taken advantage of or undervalued.

Failure to address financial concerns. If something is bothering you, speak up. Remember, you’re a part of a pair. Speak to your love about any financial concerns. Even if they’re your and yours alone, you can think of ways to resolve them. All couples should want to bring their best to the table.