All Articles Tagged "relationship advice"
Dear Very Smart Brotha,
I’ve been having a hard time lately. I was recently in a long relationship with a guy that I really cared, and still do care about. He’s an athlete, is very smart and is loved by everyone. We were inseparable. When you saw one of us, the other wasn’t far behind. Before I go any further, I want to stress the fact that those factors are NOT why I fell for him. They helped, but I would’ve loved him regardless of his social status. In fact, he had an injury from baseball that required a major shoulder surgery. I stood by his side, cancelled previous obligations the day of his surgery and made sure I was there with him that day. I stayed with him day in and out and even skipped out on my lunch break every day to check on him, made sure he’d taken his medicine, checked his blood pressure, changed his bandages, etc. etc. I treated him as if I were his wife; cooking for him, cleaning the house, ironing his clothes for him, the list goes on and on. In addition to all this, his family absolutely adores me (or so they say they do) and even after the break up we remain in contact with each other regularly.
I’m the type of person to admit when I’m wrong and when someone asks me a question, I’m brutally honest and I expect the same from my significant other. I never complained about him spending time with friends or having his time to himself. My motto for a relationship is “If you wouldnt want me doing it, you dont do it either. Treat me good, and I’ll treat you better.” Well he was amazing at first. We’d sit back and laugh at the girls that were sending him “thirsty” text messages together and just sit back and enjoy each other’s company. Then he started getting distant after about 5-6 months. Around this time, rumors began surfacing about him and his ex. And until I had reason, I acted like I had never even heard them. There were three instances that I asked him about her, and the only reason I asked was because those three particular instances had details in them that only he and I knew about. He denied all three and the last time I asked, he broke off the relationship. We still were with each other however, just without a title. (Stupid of me, I know) Soon after, pictures of he and his ex began popping up, never on his social media, always hers. But he SWORE up and down that they were strictly friends. We still associated with each other, and he still fed me “You will be my wife one day lines” and a whole bunch of other bullsh*t. We had mutual friends and I decided that I was going to go visit with them one day. He found out and flipped shit. Now at this point we dont associate with each other except for on a sexual level. He was my first and only sexual partner. He began calling me out of my name and going back to not speaking to me at all but he still gets upset by the things that I do, even though I’m not with anyone on an emotional or sexual level. My question is, from male’s perspective, what do you think is going on in his head? Why do you think he did all this and still gets upset?
Read Damon’s response on the next page.
Is This Open Letter From A Cheating Ex-Husband To His Former Mistress The Worst Thing You’ve Ever Read?
This letter, written by a lowdown and dirty anonymous cheating ex-husband, is giving me all sorts of ugly relationship/Vietnam War-like flashbacks.
I wish I could tell you this charmer’s name, but the byline on the Thought Catalog website says anonymous, which, by the way, is also the first clue that what you are about to read is some hot and messy bulls**t. Anyway, this 30-year-old bachelor of the year recently left his wife and children for his 20-year-old intern. Icky, right? Well that’s not all of it. Feeling guilty and maybe remorseful, the anonymous cheater decided to write a letter to share his feelings–not to his wife though. Rather, he addresses this finely-crafted nerve of a letter to his mistress, who after a year of dealing with the loser, wised-up and left him for more sane pastures.
Anyway, in the letter entitled, To The Millennial I Left My Wife For (And 8 Parting Words Of Advice), the cheating valentine said he did everything in his power to make it work with his mistress, not wife, including reading books and articles, contemplating therapy and doing anything he could “to make myself worthy of your love.” Despite his failed attempt to woo his mistress with promises of therapy and newspaper clippings, our sad and pathetic lover boy says that he is not at all upset about what has transpired. Although he admits to having moments of jealousy and neediness, as well as once threatening, “to expose how we got started when you threatened to leave,” our hopeless romantic still claims to be rather grateful for the experience.
He writes, “You finally had the courage to do what I couldn’t do, even after you were kissing and making dinners for your neighbor behind my back, when you got together with ex-boyfriends without telling me, and accepted dates from other men…,”
Nope, not bitter at all. In fact, to prove how un-bitter his fruit is, Romeo here gives his ex-lover eight unsolicited tips on how to not be a cold-hearted ice princess, including such timeless wisdom as:
2. Continue to value family and friends. While some friendships will fade, don’t give up on being the type of friend and family member worth keeping in one’s life.
Because a man, who left his family for a barely legal intern, would know something about family values. Speaking of grown men messing with young girls, he also advises her to do the following:
3. Continue to make your bed. I know you did it for me, but it truly made your day better. But remember too, that it doesn’t matter if you leave your bed unmade and your clothes all over the floor. You’re fantastic the way you are and those who love you don’t really care.
So outside of the paternalism of telling a grown woman, despite being 10 years his junior, to make her bed, he is also going to tell her how much she liked it, even though it was apparent she was only doing it to shut his controlling mouth up. Even more peculiar is that after feeling it necessary to include the bed-making chore on his list of wise words, he concludes the point by saying that making her bed is not important at all. Talk about gaslighting a chick…
And then there is this gem:
- Don’t be afraid to seek help. Many of us are good at seeking help for our career, but too often we refuse to seek help for our personal life as well. There is no shame in admitting you don’t know everything about how to be a good friend, lover and partner.
I just can’t say anything nice here. But our romantic illusionist is not finished yet and wraps up his double-speak manifesto with this sentiment:
Despite our differences and our history, I hoped to give you the world. There’s a big part of me that still does. My friends and my ex-wife tell me that time will heal my wounded heart. I hope they’re right. I hope to once again wake up and not look for you next to me. I hope to be able to masturbate again without stopping because I can only see your body and your face. I hope I can once again think about being with another woman. I hope the loneliness fades. But for now, I still can’t fathom a future with anyone but you. Ending my marriage was hard; losing you has been even harder.
As I said, this letter will be all kinds of frustrating to those women (and men), who have ever dealt with a narcissist before. His ex-wife should be grateful to have him out her life – although I have no idea why she entertains him (enough to give him advice on the next woman) beyond finding out what time he plans on picking up the children for his scheduled visitations…
But in spite of how agitating this letter is, there is a great warning here, particularly about those potential partners who would rather place emotional burdens on the shoulders of their significant others than to do deal with their own flaws. In short, avoid them.
Likewise, this letter is a nice reminder of how silly it is when women fight each other over who is the main chick and who is the side jawn. Just remember that in between that drama between the two women being played is an emotional manipulator, who cowardly feeds off of the attention and energy he receives from both.
Nia: What makes a man want to marry? I’ve been with my guy for 17 years got the ring but no I do.
DY: A man wants to marry when he finds someone he wants to marry. Basically, if you’ve been with him 17 years, and he hasn’t married you yet, he just doesn’t want to marry you. I didn’t mean for that to come out so blunt, but there’s really no other way to put it.
Mesha: Why do men follow their penis and not their heart?
DY: (Some) Men do that because they value the temporary pleasure from making their penises happy more than the long-term (but riskier) pleasure of heart happiness.
And, of course, there are also many men who value both equally.
Precious: Should a woman divorce her husband if he has not been providing financially? Job hopping.
DY: Depends on why he hasn’t been providing. Getting laid off in a tough economy — which is understandable — is different than being lazy/unemployable.
Deanna: Any advice on how to approach the subject of children? I don’t want any and I’m not sure how long I should wait (if at all) before I tell a guy I’m dating.
DY: You don’t have to divulge those details while initially dating. But, if it’s at the point where it may have the potential to turn into something long-term, it’s time to share that.
Tia: How do I get a guy’s attention that I like?
DY: Say “Hi. My name is Tia. What’s yours?” Or get naked and show up at his job. One of the two should work.
Lauren: Why are guys so fearful of committing to an awesome woman?
DY: “Awesome” is a relative term. Your “awesome” may not be his “awesome.”
Tabitha: My issue is that a strong independent black woman I find that I intimidate a lot of men. I don’t intentionally try to do it but it just seems that is how I come across. It’s true I don’t need a man, but I do want a companion. I’ve tried toning down my assertiveness but then I don’t feel true to myself. Damon, what advice can you offer me?
DY: Many of the women who make sure to refer to themselves as “independent” and “strong” women who “don’t need a man” also tend to be somewhat obnoxious. Not saying this is you, but if it is you, you don’t have to keep reminding everyone of how strong you are. Take off the “I’m independent!!!!” t-shirt and start rocking your “I’m Tabitha!!!” t-shirt instead.
‘I Was With Someone That Wasn’t Supporting My Growth:’ Melanie Fiona Discusses The Art Of Breaking Up
There’s tons of advice out there about how to attract a man, how to date and how to maintain a successful relationship. But rarely do people offer advice on how to break up, if and when that time comes. During the second installment of Necole Bitchie’s “Girl Talk” chats, singer Melanie Fiona advised against being the wild and deranged woman who wants to destroy everything in her path following a breakup.
“Ladies, I know it’s so easy to fly off the handle and throw stuff outside, and burn stuff, but there is nothing good that comes from that,” she explained. “No matter how much you think he is the worst person in the world. There is nothing worse than for him to see than you strong, walking out, being like ‘You’re going to miss me when I’m gone.’ Not the “Oh my God, she was crazy. She burned all my sh**. She cut up all my stuff.’ ‘Yea, that’s why you can’t be with that chick, she’s crazy.’ That’s what dudes say!
The “It Kills Me” singer added that remaining calm is generally the best way to approach the situation.
“What I’ve learned is that there is so much strength and power in being calm and saying what you gotta say because you’ve done the work to know what is for you and what’s not for you.”
The 30-year-old Toronto native also advised against settling for less just for the sake of being in a relationship.
“I was with someone that wasn’t supporting my growth and it’s a question that you have to ask the partner you are with; ‘Do you love me for the girl that I am or do you love me for the woman I will become.’ And so, the truth of the matter is, you have to figure out who that woman is. And hopefully if you are with someone, they can love you through those things.”
Though her family continues to pressure her about marriage by reminding her that she isn’t getting any younger, Melanie says that she will not settle for anything less than what she feels she deserves.
“I talk to my mom and of course West Indian parents say, ‘You getting married? Are you getting married today! You are getting older!’ I had to remind my mom, ‘Mom, I’m not going to settle for less than I deserve.’ I’m comfortable and I’ve done the work to know that I’d rather be by myself than to be with the wrong person. And that’s okay. I want extreme love and I believe it can happen and I believe it’s for me.”
Read Mealnie’s full interview here.
I recently decided to cut my hair off and go natural. I made the decision on a whim and I felt empowered doing it and I love my new TWA. But my boyfriend absolutely cannot stand it. This is who I am so I’m wondering whether or not our relationship stands a chance? What do you think?
Dear Newly Natural,
That’s a tricky question, for many reasons.
It’s possible that he doesn’t dislike your natural hair, just the particular natural hairstyle you have. Just as there are dozens of different things women can do with weave or relaxed hair, there are dozens of different “natural” hair styles — twists, afros, short dreads, long dreads, braids, etc.
I bring this up because it’s often implied that if a Black man doesn’t like a Black woman’s natural hair style, he’s really a self-hating slave to the euro-standard of beauty. And while that may be true in some cases, usually it just comes down to a man getting used to his woman with a particular hairstyle, and not immediately feeling the change. And this is something that happens with white women, Asian women, Latinas, whoever.
Also, although men are the ones who get criticized for being upset about a woman’s hair change, many women actually would feel the same way if their bf/husband made certain changes. For all the women attracted to and/or dating men with dreads, I’m sure you’d feel a certain way if you came home one day and he cut all of his hair off. Same with the women who attracted to and/or dating men with full beards. And, I personally know that my fiancee would have an issue if I grew out my hair and decided I wanted to look like Pusha T.
You also have to consider the fact that maybe it’s not about the hair. Perhaps he’s upset you made that decision without discussing it with him first. Not asking permission, mind you. But discussing it. Perhaps the hair issue is a symptom of a deeper communication problem.
Granted, if you’re the type of woman who changes hairstyles and hair colors four times a month, you don’t need to have that conversation because he likely knew before you even started dating that the multiple change thing was a part of your package. But, if you’re a person who has had the same look for a number of years, you should give your man a heads-up if you’re planning on making a drastic change.
That said, a situation like this can say a lot about your relationship’s health. Basically, if he’s truly into you, he’ll eventually get over it and get used to your new hair. Maybe he won’t ever love it, but it won’t be a deal breaker either.And, if the hair continues to be an issue, he’s not the one for you.
Pittsburgh native Damon Young (aka “The Champ”) is the co-founder of the ridiculously popular VerySmartBrothas.com Their first book “Your Degrees Won’t Keep You Warm At Night: The Very Smart Brothas Guide To Dating, Mating and Fighting Crime” is available at Amazon.com.
Another week, another relationship question and answer session with Damon Young. There were some interesting questions this week that really illustrate the difficulties–or the perceived difficulties–women have with dating and relationships. Take a look at the selected questions below and let us know if you agree with Damon’s advice.
Comeakco: A man tells a woman he needs space due to her consistent temper issues. They can talk on the phone but he wants space to figure this out. The woman seeks advice from two different men. One man says do not give him space. try to work it out. the other guy says give him what he ask for (space). Your thoughts?? Space or no Space? lol
DY: If the man asked for space, give him space. I mean, think about what you’re asking here. He has a problem with your anger issues. Wouldn’t you saying “No. I won’t give you space” be exactly what he was talking about?
Comeakco: Lmbo…I guess you’re right.
Earlier this week La La Anthony released her very first relationships book titled “The Love Playbook.” During a recent interview with Sway Calloway, the “La La’s Full Court Life” star opened up about some of her own relationship experiences—including being involved with an abusive boyfriend.
“Yes, dysfunctional abusive—verbally abusive. Not physically but I mean, it’s abuse in anyway. And very controlling. You know and it was my first love and I felt like he was controlling me because he loved me and that’s how he’s showing me that he loved me.”
She also reflected on some of the lowest moments spent in that tumultuous relationship.
“Throwing plates of food at me, breaking glasses, always being really angry and upset. I was like, ‘This can’t be love’. I would tell myself that and continue to stay. And I remember calling my dad like, ‘Dad, I need you to come and get me.’”
Thankfully, she learned her lesson and now she wants to help other young women.
“And it was later on that I realized that was completely wrong and that’s a message I want to get out to young women out there. That’s not love. And see ‘The Playbook’ is a great book. The chore of the book is about self esteem and loving yourself. And that’s the message I want to get out…and not feel like you need a man to feel whole.”
“I went through it and I like to speak from a place of experience. I’ve been through a lot that people don’t know about.”
Watch La La’s interview on the next page. Have you picked up a copy of ‘The Love Playbook?’What are your thoughts so far?
When it comes to relationship advice from celebrities, most of them are in no position to tell anyone anything about love. Need relationship advice? Not from these celebrities…
When Gabrielle Union gave women advice on how to know when to leave a man, I almost fell out of my chair. Her list clearly didn’t include “if he’s already married” or “if he has a baby with another woman while you two are ‘on a break’”
I’ve been in a really bad relationship for 12 years with my husband. He cheated on me about a year ago and we separated because of it. Fast forward to 3 months ago. I have been having crushes on guys and I can’t say anything to them because I’m still miserably married. Some of these guys don’t even know that I’m interested in them. They all know that I’m married. Please help, what should I do?
Dear Constipated Crush,
Of the many latent themes present throughout the fifth season of “The Wire” — aka “the best American piece of art ever made” — the one that I’ve found the most applicable to my own life is the concept of “fresh eyes.” Sometimes you can get so bogged down in a situation or circumstance, that it’s hard for you to make good assessments, and you need to bring someone else to help you. Basically, you need “fresh eyes.”
For instance, a few months ago my car was acting strange. Making weird noises, riding awkwardly, and just not handling the way I was use to. First, I thought it was my engine. Then the brakes. Then the shocks. I couldn’t figure out what it was, so I made an appointment to see a mechanic. The day before the appointment, I drove to my parent’s house. My dad happened to be on the porch. The first thing he said to me when I greeted him? “Son, you need some new tires.”
He was right. And, not only did I need new tires, the tires were what was causing my car trouble. It seemed like an easy/obvious solution, but I was so focused on the engine and the brakes and the shocks that I couldn’t see the answer.
Anyway, I’m bringing this up because I remind myself of this when getting letters like yours. To me, the solution to your dilemma is obvious. But, because you’re invested in the situation, I can understand why the answer may not be as obvious to you.
You need to get a divorce. Immediately. You’ve been in an unhappy relationship for over a decade. And now it’s time to end it. Your tires are bald, and you need to throw them away and get some new ones if you ever want to be able to move on.
Pittsburgh native Damon Young (aka “The Champ”) is the co-founder of the ridiculously popular VerySmartBrothas.com. Their first book “Your Degrees Won’t Keep You Warm At Night: The Very Smart Brothas Guide To Dating, Mating and Fighting Crime” is available at Amazon.com.