All Articles Tagged "relationship"
When we initially meet Somaya Reece on the first season of Love & Hip-Hop New York, she openly discussed her relationship woes. Those woes included both physical and emotional abuse. Since then, the South Central Salvadorian beauty has not only revamped her look but has a cute boyfriend who simply adores her. Despite the amazing turnaround for Reese, she humbly never forgets her past. This past weekend the hip-hop reality star turned model and author stated on her Instagram that she was actually once the victim of domestic abuse:
“I love and embrace my imperfections. No one is perfect. No one will ever be. The thought of living or portraying a perfect life is not REAL! My life is transparent for a reason. I embrace the pain I have suffered. The reason why I made it out alive many times over was because I was meant to live in order to tell my story. To tell my story in order to inspire and motivate others. The physical pain will never go away, but my heart is in a better place. I still have night terrors from when my first boyfriend beat my face into pulp. I lost my hearing for a bit. I can still distinctly hear his haunting laugh while he was doing it. He punched and broke the majority of my top right teeth. He crushed my right temple & crushed my upper cheek bones.”
Somaya continued on:
“When you’ve seen death dead in the face, you fears no longer exist. No man on earth can every hurt me or try to instill fear in me. No man (or woman) on earth can determine my fate. And no matter how much or many have tried to bring me down. They can’t. All those that have done me dirty I don’t have to pray for, they need to seek prayer for themselves. Many have tried their best to hurt me, but i’m still here. I’m still standing tall with my head held high. I was once broken but never shattered. I’m here to send a positive message. I don’t allow my past to make me bitter. I don’t use the excuse of my painful past as a reason to act up. I have a lot to live for. I have a lot of people to help. I have my family to work hard for. And I will continue to tell my story in order to inspire YOU.”
Because of her experiences, Reece has launched a domestic violence campaign called “Be You.” The campaign will help domestic violence survivors to rebuild their self-esteem and reclaim their identity.
What are your thoughts on her statement?
When my husband and I first came together as a romantic couple three years ago, we agreed to practice Radical Honesty in our relationship, meaning he and I wouldn’t keep any secrets from each other bigger than a surprise party. The rule can prove more challenging to abide by than you might suspect at first. But both of us feel it’s well worth the occasional angst we experience in order to enjoy a romance that lets us feel totally connected and utterly trusting of each other.
What does Radical Honesty mean? It means, quite simply, that you tell the your partner everything that’s going on in your life. Everything. Not just where you’re going that evening and what you’ll be doing at work that day and with whom, but also mentioning when someone you meet gives you butterflies. When you feel an urge to reach out to an ex. When you get overwhelmed with guilt about someone you hurt years ago.
It means sharing when someone at the office gets flirtatious with you—even if you don’t reciprocate his or her advances. Or telling your partner you find someone—even a movie star—Hot. In sum, it boils down to full disclosure and keeping zero secrets in an attempt to ward off any potential trouble further down the road.
My desire for Radical Honesty runs deep. I was married for six years and in a nine-year relationship prior to meeting and marrying my current husband, Kiran.
Back then I was married to Sid, who was not the love of my life by any means, but we did have a caring, fun relationship—until it all fell apart. I gradually discovered that Sid had been lying to me. First about small things, like running into an ex at an event and grabbing a quick drink with her. Then about big things, like hitting on a mutual friend of ours, telling her how much he wanted to sleep with her. After we divorced, the walls came tumbling down. Other people shared their stories about Sid. Turns out my ex had been dishonest about who he was at his very core. It took me a long time to forgive him—and myself.
What I learned beyond a shadow of a doubt from my first marriage was a gift. I came to see how lies, no matter how tiny, can snowball into grander and far more humiliating deceptions. Lies completely undermined my relationship with Sid; I was not about to allow the same thing to happen with Kiran.
Of course, practicing Radical Honesty can be tough. It forces you to confront tough emotions head on. In a society that teaches us to avoid conflict as much as humanly possible, to make amends, smooth things over, and tell white lies, Radical Honesty is the opposite policy. It’s all about diving headfirst into sticky situations in the name of love.
I’ll give you an example. I have promised to tell Kiran whenever I hear from an ex-boyfriend, just as he will tell me whenever an ex-girlfriend contacts him. I personally don’t think there’s anything worse than glancing at your partner’s cellphone when it rings or buzzes and seeing that heart-pounding, knee-shaking, jealousy-inspiring ex’s name on the screen. What could more instantly and assuredly inspire a total mental breakdown? At least this way, I know that if Angela or Katy (not their real names) reaches out, Kiran will tell me about it—pronto.
Read more at YourTango.com
From Single Black Male
I was able to catch “The Best Man: Holiday” on opening night with my homegirl. Upon leaving the theater she said something that struck me. Without giving anything away, she was amazed at how a man could love a woman so strongly. She was so amazed that she told me that she thinks a man should love a woman more than a woman should love a man.
To be frank, I think we’ve all heard this before. I know that I have, and I also realized that I never paid it much attention. It was at this moment where I simply thought “no.” This couldn’t possibly be right. Let me tell you why.
I told my friend that I think her philosophy is only shaped by her past experiences.
None of us are strangers to relationships in which we may have given more than the other person. To ever say that one person should love one more than the other only speaks to a paranoia we have. In a relationship, we have a paranoia of not wanting to experience that hurt again. In that mindset, we formulate defensive schemes like this. Either we think of it ourselves, or our elders lend their two cents on the issue. Regardless of the source, this idea comes from a place where maybe too much thinking is going on. Sometimes it does pay to experience new relationships in the moment. Give new experiences a fair chance. It’s the only way to remain fair to your partner.
I told my homegirl that if she asked a happily married couple who loved who more, they wouldn’t have an answer. I know what it is to be in love. At no time while being in love did I have a chance to think if I loved my lady more than she loved me. It was irrelevant. I simply knew I loved and that I loved as hard as I knew how to. For a woman to say that a man should love her more says to me that she’s pulling back.
If you’re pulling back and are still waiting for someone to show more love than you do, it isn’t fair.
Your whole relationship is no longer balanced. I’m no expert, but I don’t think that this philosophy will solve your issue either. You could argue that you’re being just as unfair as the person who may have hurt you in the past.
Read more at SingleBlackMale.org
Dear Dr. Sherry,
I usually don’t ask for help, but I am just so disgusted with my situation. I’m 60-years-old and I am ready to accept the fact that I may end this life as a single woman. I have dated more than I care to tell you, and although there are still men out there worth dating, they’re all still so immature. Either they want sex immediately and when you say no they don’t call back or you do sleep with them and they still don’t call you back. I know my age is a turn off, but I have lost weight, I dress well and I have my own home and car. I recently earned my Masters Degree too.
I cannot find a man who appreciates what I have to offer. I was married for 20 years and I’ve been divorced for 17. I am not a prude by any means. I have fallen in love a couple of times but they always end up not calling and finding someone else. One man even got married last year, to a younger woman, and is now trying to talk to me again. What am I doing wrong? I love myself the way I am but I can’t seem to find a man who loves me. I am no dummy, but I don’t play cutesy coy catch me if you can games either; I never have. What advice can you give me because I really don’t like what I’m seeing out here in the dating pool!
Still In Search
Read Dr. Sherry’s response at Essence.com
Have you ever heard of “premature infatuation”? This is a syndrome that occurs in adults of dating age who are actively searching for a special love relationship. They imagine their ideal savior and project that image onto another person — whether he or she deserves it or not. When feeling that spark or chemistry, they confuse these feelings for real love and end up with premature infatuation. When the projection fades, it’s like a part of them gets cut off from air and they can’t breathe. Doesn’t sound so romantic, does it?
The aftermath is filled with a search to get yourself back to that magical place when you were together. No one else will do, and only that person holds the magic to create those feelings inside of you. You feel lost without them, and the high of the infatuation is matched by the low of the abandonment.
What follows? So many wasted nights pining over this image, fueled by the idea of a person that you decided meant so much to you. You forget that you are the one who chose them, made them special and created the feelings of adoration. Now, the good news is that if you created the image, then the love and idea is INSIDE of you, not inside of them. You hold the key to moving on.
The reason you get infatuated is that you deny the most beautiful and amazing parts of yourself. This gold inside is hidden and is a part of your love shadow. When you meet someone, you project your own gold onto them, forgetting who you are and believing they hold all the magic. So many people approach shadow-work as facing the dark and negative in us, but most of the things we can’t see or acknowledge about ourselves are incredible. We were born to search for this “awesomeness” but the world has told us to look outside, especially through the acceptance and approval of others. (Shadow is a termed coined by Carl Jung about the unconscious parts of us that we deny or suppress that direct our relationships with others).
If you reclaim these wonderful parts of you, you will stop projecting and see people as they truly are through your own beautiful eyes. No longer allowing someone to hold you captive in fear of loss, you can make love decisions based on truth. Many people ask if real love is less exciting because you aren’t projecting anymore. The answer is that it is actually much better. Imagine feeling those great feelings without the fear of loss, and coming from a strong foundation that you want to give, not get love. That is true love.
We naturally crave infatuation because we are designed to search for this love. But the problem arises when we are searching for it “out there” instead of inside ourselves. It is like we live as though we are a homeless person who doesn’t know he or she has a million dollars in the bank.
Read more at YourTango.com
Okay, once again, here’s the scenario. You call up a male friend in another city, say Los Angeles, and say, “Hey, I am coming into town on such and such a date, can I stay at your place?”
Now keep in mind that you have never slept with this friend and you have other friends in the same town that you could potentially stay with, so this man is going to have a bit of anticipation because of your choice. (When to Have Sex with the Man You’re Dating?)
Your friend is a nice guy and accommodates you. He goes two hours out of his way, round trip, to pick you up from the airport, simply because you were unable, too cheap or just didn’t think to get a rental car. But whatever; you now expect this friend to cater to your needs by running you around town. Can I say: Get a bus pass?
Okay, as a rule of thumb, if you call and invite yourself to a man’s home in another state, come prepared to take care of your business and at least ask him, at the bare minimum, if he needs anything. I mean, if the man has provided lodging, then right off the bat, you are saving hundreds of dollars on hotel costs. Right?
So he picks you up from the airport. Keep in mind you’re not sleeping with him; in fact, now you are back in the safety and comfort of his home in a gigantic king-sized bed of your own, not to mention your own bathroom. He now reluctantly asks if you know how to give a massage. After all, he has a headache from a very long day–facing two hours of driving in LA traffic, highway construction projects and road detours just to pick you up. And you say no. Okay, I know what you are thinking, but I don’t care if you give a massage in your panties, in your bathrobe, down on your knees or fully clothed. No is not an option. Besides, is it “no” as in you don’t feel like it, or “no,” as in you don’t know how to give a massage? In that case, you’re 27 years old and do not know how to give a man a basic massage? Are you kidding me? You are a prime candidate to be cheated on.
Okay, so let’s be realistic here and go deeper. You are somewhat of a decent-looking woman; I will give you that. You can dress nicely; I’ll give you that. But the real question is, what do you bring to the table that benefits anyone besides you? Here is the honest-to-goodness opinion of an intelligent man viewing your behavior: “She is not a supermodel; she’s in the middle of the road. She is not willing to sleep with me, she called and invited herself to stay at my home, she expects to be picked up from the airport, she does not know how to give a basic massage, she was too cheap to get a rental car (which means she is broke) and she never even asked if I needed anything. So she is broke and cheap and it was always about her–how her hair looks and what she is going to wear.” Who are you really going to catch–the Man of Your Dreams? More like the man of right now.
Read more at YourTango.com
From Hello Beautiful
Each week on “Iyanla: Fix My Life” we watch Iyanla Vanzant help celebrities and everyday people overcome their personal struggles to live a better life. But, on an upcoming episode of the hit OWN series, we get a glimpse in the spiritual life coach’s personal story of survival.
In a new promo clip, Iyanla shares her experience of living through domestic violence with guest Janetria.
“After I got hit in my head with a bed slat, I woke up at three o’clock in the morning and something said to me, ‘If you don’t leave here now, he’s going to kill you,’” she said. “And I creeped out of the bed and I got a bag of clothes for each of my kids and one for me. And I left.”
“I had nowhere to go, I had no money to get there — I didn’t even care,” she continued. “But I had to be willing to lose everything to gain it all.”
Read more at HelloBeautiful.com
Note: Don’t ever date a man who’s wealthy enough to spend money on the most random things because he’s bored and bitter. You might end up with a middle finger statue aimed right at you.
This is the situation a Bloomfield Hills, Michigan woman finds herself in. According to Gawker, Alan Markowitz, a local businessman decided to show he wasn’t “done” with his unidentified ex so he bought a house right next to hers, undoubtedly annoying the woman to no end.
But it doesn’t end there.
Apparently, Markowitz then purchased a bronze statue in the shape of a middle finger and had it placed right in the view of the woman’s home. Her daughter Lenka tweeted, “[I]ts hard for me to enjoy my baths now because my fav tub is in my moms bathroom which faces out towards tif and alans house.”
No, not even a leisurely bath is sacred anymore.
At night, the statue is still visible because Markowitz has a spotlight on to illuminate the figure.
MArkowitz, is the owner of three Detroit strip clubs and the author of Topless Prophet: The True Story of America’s Most Successful Gentleman’s Club Entrepreneur. The book is actually being turned into a television show. He’s also the father of a 17 year old girl who lives in the home with him. I’m sure she’s really excited about all of this attention (I’m using sarcasm but since she’s only 17, she might find this pretty cool).
Listen, you have to be pretty pathetic to take such drastic measures towards your ex. I guess the whole “deal with your feelings and move on” thing just doesn’t work, huh?
Listen, you have to be very
Throughout your lifetime you will run into lots of advice about how to “catch” a man, how to “be attractive” to men, how to “keep” a man… the list goes on. Can I tell you right now that that advice is pure and total crap? Sure, you can follow those instructions and “catch” yourself a man, but if you’ve followed said advice, is he really going to be the man you want? Because if a man has to be caught like a bass fish then you might consider setting him free, and instead look for a partner; not a fish. As you constantly tell me: “Just sayin’.”
So here, my wonderful girl, are some qualities that I think should be non-negotiable for the man who is lucky enough to be a partner in your life.
1. Don’t bother with a man who you think cares about you but can’t show you or say so.
If he can’t tell you how much he loves you, then he’s not going to be able to handle the big conversations that are required for a healthy, long-term relationship. Not to mention that you deserve to hear words that relay love and affection throughout your entire life.
2. Don’t even think of spending more than a few hours with a man who isn’t every bit as interested in you as you are in him.
If you’ve gone on a couple of dates with him and he hasn’t asked you any questions about you, run like an ax-murderer is chasing you. Just RUN! The best relationships are filled with mutual respect and mutual interest in each other’s lives. Self-centeredness is truly one of the worst qualities you can find in a potential mate.
Read more at YourTango.com
There’s something about hypocrisy that really bugs me. Just the whole idea of “do as I say, not as I do,” is something that can make the little vein under my eye start twitching. Therefore, I’m not big on holding people to a standard that I can’t even hold for myself; and honestly, I don’t want much from people. Just honesty.
Growing up I would hide so many of my past struggles and emotional scars and felt like I was constantly drowning. Wanting to lift my head up to get some air, but knew that that would leave me exposed, cold, and there would be no guarantee that there would be a lifeboat there waiting to rescue me. So, I kept my head underwater (metaphorically speaking). But one day, I couldn’t stand it anymore. My emotional lungs throbbed and screamed for fresh air, and I knew that if I didn’t take a deep breath soon, I wasn’t going to survive the way that I was living.
So I did it. With my middle school boyfriend, I revealed everything about me. The things that hurt, that I was ashamed of, the things that I prayed wouldn’t be accompanied with questions because, how could I explain it to him when it was my first time explaining it to myself. I felt free, happy, and knew that no matter what, I was going to cherish the moment when I finally exposed my truth. That was until this same boyfriend, after we “broke up” (we took those childish relationships so seriously, didn’t we?), told everyone in his class everything that I told him. Feeling exposed, I wanted to sink under the lockers, or start my own underground dwellers community. All the questions of: ”Is this true?!” accompanied with the “Well, that’s what Tre’ said!”
Luckily, it happened during my last week of school. I graduated a few days after, so I didn’t endure it for too long. But those days were so torturous and I remember contemplating exposing his dirt, but my morals wouldn’t allow me to, because even though he hurt me, I didn’t want to hurt him.
I realized that the reason why it hurt so much was because people were using my truth against me, so I decided to fight fire with fire. If you wanted to know Kendra, you were going to know everything short of my Social Security Number. I didn’t want anything to ever be held over me as a way of holding me in to anyone, because, frankly, I’d done it to myself for years. You had questions about me, all you had to do was go to the source.
I became so free with doing it that usually within the first few lines of communicating with someone for the first time, if you seemed like someone that I could trust, you were someone who could know all about me.
A few years later, I started to really think back on this and realized that this was just as dangerous as well. At any time there was the fear that some ex in my life could pop back in, and expose a grenade that I gave him.
Now, I’m still an advocate of being one hundred percent truthful, but I have to be honest, everyone doesn’t deserve the privilege of getting to know “Kendra” as a whole. I still don’t lie, but I recognize that trust is a byproduct of transparency, and only you can determine how trust determines how much of yourself you would like to expose. Know that are a great person, and whoever gets to know you, the real you, is an extremely lucky person. Expose wisely.