Girl, get your mind right
Sunday night I was watching Insecure on HBO, which stars Issa Rae. Insecure is a show, based in Los Angeles, that follow the lives of young African American professionals. I won’t delve too much into the show because this specific blog is not so much about the show, but the theme that occurs on the show, which is really about intimate relationships. One of the main themes throughout the show is how many of the female characters make really bad choices with regards to dating men.
It got me to thinking “Why do so many black women get caught up in bad relationships with men who don’t deserve them?” In the show, the ladies have very high standards for what they say they want in a man, but settle for pennies when they get in a relationship. For example, one of the characters, Molly, is sleeping with a married man who she grew up with, under the guise of the married man has an open relationship with his wife. That’s a whole other topic. Anyhow, Molly is a successful attorney and is being actively pursued by and dating a nice, single black man, who by all appearances is ready for a serious relationship. Instead of trying to cultivate that relationship, she has instead chosen to sleep with a man who is unavailable to her emotionally. In addition, she is friends with the man’s wife! I have spent so many times counseling women about relationships with married men. Do married men sometimes leave their wives? Sure, but is starting a new relationship with someone else’s husband the way to go? Absolutely not! Girl, get your mind right.
Another theme of the show is taking care of a man financially. Issa, the star of the show, supported her boyfriend financially emotionally for two years, while he was making half hearted attempts at realizing his dreams in the tech industry, all the while, not entirely happy with her own work situation. In my opinion, this is the height of insanity. Ladies let me give you some advice for free. Unless this is your husband and you both agreed that you will work and he will stay home and take care of the children, this is always a bad idea. No matter how supportive you may be trying to be, over time, this will undoubtedly do something to his self-esteem. I totally get that people sometimes fall on hard times and you want to be supportive, but you also should have boundaries. Recently, a good friend of mine shared that she was dating a guy who has not worked in years, by choice. She stated that whenever they go out, she often foots the bill. However, he often makes time and apparently comes up with the money to travel. As I sat listening, I wanted to scream at her Girl, get your mind right! He is an older gentlemen, who I suspect is settled in his ways. Now, if I were in my 20’s maybe I wouldn’t mind but I’m not. Being in a relationship with a person who is gainfully employed matters to me.
When you find yourselves in relationships with broken men, that is a sign that you need to raise your standards. Now, back to my original question, “Why do so many black women stay in bad relationships?” Here are some food for thought:
– We are afraid to be alone. Many women feel like they can’t be alone. As if there is something wrong with them. Well let me tell you, staying in a bad relationship will only hurt you more.
– Low self esteem is a big one. Often times, when you are struggling with low self-esteem, you feel like this is the best you can do. In actuality, you are just settling out of fear.
– Biological clock is clicking; Bringing a baby into a unhealthy relationship won’t save your relationships. Society places great pressure on women to get married and have children. Times have changed. Not everyone wants children in their 20’s and 30’s. Look at Janet Jackson and Halle Berry. These are women who have given birth in their 40’s and 50’s. Many women are choosing to delay starting families and prioritize their careers.
– The last reason is being committed to the relationship. You keep hoping your partner’s behavior will change and the reality is, the only person’s behavior you can change, is your own.
If this sounds like you, no judgment, we have all been there at some point . Here is my advice to you. Go get a Therapist to help you get your mind right.
Ms. Culture Keeper-