An honest dialogue about love, life, and everything in-between...

Friday, November 30, 2012

'Shiny Object' Syndrome

Why some good men fall...

I was reading an amazing book by Alease Michelle McClenningham called Greatness is in the Comeback.  This book is all about rediscovering your purpose and developing an action plan to help move you into fulfilling that purpose. (A total generalized summary, but pick up the book, it's a good one).  Anyway, in the book she says that sometimes the reason people get distracted or can't focus on what they're supposed to be doing is because they have Shiny Object Syndrome: bouncing from one big idea, task, event, to the next without spending dedicated time to developing an idea to its full potential.  (Or something like that - haven't finished the book yet - but none the less follow me here).

While I was pondering, wondering, being baffled by, some of the bad relationship/partner decisions some people make, it brought me back to this idea of the Shiny Object Syndrome.  Essentially, how people use this as a distraction, hiding what is true and real about themselves, how seemingly good people end up with the wrong partner, and how good people can get 'caught up' in a bad situation.

I think men are the largest sufferers from this syndrome.  Think of all the bs men will put up with from a woman if she's 'shiny'.  In other words, if the woman is what he considers beautiful (shiny), they'll put up with more crazy, more lying, more drama.  They'll excuse her shortcomings (she's stupid, got too many kids by too many different guys, she can't cook, she can't clean, totally plastic - she can't really do anything but be cute).  

Now, the women who have all these shortcomings know this.  They know that men are visual and use this to their advantage.  Therefore, they spend the most time shining themselves up.  They weave it out, push it up, slather it on, trend it, spend it, until they are what most men find attractive.  Unfortunately for most women who use this to secure a man, the syndrome will leave them high and dry once a new shinier object crosses that man's path.  Remember, these women have no substance, so there's nothing to keep that man from following the next shiny object.  Even if she manages to 'trap' him. (And you all know what I mean by 'trap').

This syndrome is also the power weapon of the predatory chic.  She uses it to her advantage to lure good guys away from doing what they know is right with their big head, towards what the little head thinks it wants.  The predatory chic knows that with just the right combination of shiny, lowered inhibitions, and temptation, she can lure any good guy into her trap.  Thereby being part of the reason why good men can get caught up in cheating situations. Which is why I encourage guys NOT to put themselves into the situation in the first place. But we'll discuss the predatory chic at a later date.

Shiny Object Syndrome is real people.  Distractions are a part of life. But there should always come a point where we start focusing on what is truly good for us, and what we need, not only what we want. Ask yourself: Do you want to be in a serious relationship?  What do you really and truly want and need from a partner?  Is this person you are spending all this time with actually meeting your qualifications?  What are your qualifications?  We have to make sure we stay focused on what it is we are truly out here looking for.  With just a little bit of effort and careful risk-management, anyone can overcome the Shiny Object Syndrome. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Know Your Role: The Harem Chick

10:08 AM |

One of many...

Originally when I began exploring the roles women play in men's dating lives, I came up with the four roles: Wifey/Girlfriend, Other Woman, Jump-off, Friend.  I forgot completely about the Harem Chick.  

The Harem Chick is one of many a guy is currently dating.  Truthfully, this role isn't really  bad one.  When you date, and truly date, you could be dating several people at one time.  As long as none of you have decided to date exclusively, there is nothing wrong with this role.  Now the number of women men juggle is a topic for a whole 'nother conversation.

In essence the Harem Chick is a girl a guy is interested in.  This is the starting level, the launching point into one of the other main roles, if you will.  Right now you just truthfully don't have one of the main titles yet.  You may never make it to be one of the main title ladies, but at least the guy is interested in you enough to spend time with you and get to know you better.  Like I said, this is a good thing.  You're actually dating!

Now how you behave while you are a part of the harem will determine what role you land in once he does decide to get serious or begin handing out assignments.  If you've managed to capture his heart out of all the other ladies, congratulations, you'll be promoted to the Wifey/Girlfriend position.  

If you are still very special to him, but not quite offering everything that one of the other ladies are (and he's greedy) he'll move you to the Other Woman position.  If he's not greedy, you'll probably land into that awkward friend position that will either be terminated for the good of his current relationship, be the rebound if said relationship goes belly up or be the 'what-if' homegirl, best friend you want to do the nasty with but never do because the two of you respect each other's relationship-the very definition of why men and women are said to not be able to just be friends. 

If you spend a majority of your time in the harem on your back or knees, congratulations to you, you are and will probably forever be the Jump-off. (Get up off the floor). 

And if the two of you connect but there's not as much chemistry as he has with other girls, the two of you are just moving in different directions, want different things out of life or if there's not really any sexual fire between the two of you at all, you are now his Friend/Homegirl. Or you could just be cut from the roster all together and the two of you will never speak again.

Like I said, every man and woman starts off in this role when you first begin dating.  It's very rare that you 'date' just one person at a time in the very beginning.  And truthfully, why limit yourself in the beginning. If you plan to be sexually active with all these people (wouldn't recommend it), then hey boo, do you.  But do you safely and protected.  

There are so many people in this world to get to know.  Find people you share common interests with, spend time with them, get to know them, and then decide who you'd like to begin developing a deeper connection with.  Who knows, spending more time in this role could help you out if you were to move into one of the other positions. The two of you will have actually taken the time to get to know one another before making a commitment.  And truthfully, I think that's really what more people need to do. 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Disappearing Acts

Why your friends 'disappear' when you get a new boo…

So you're in love.  You've got a new boo thang and things are going great.   You two laugh together.  Share common interest.  Everything is just wonderful.  One day you look around and realize all of your friends you had before your relationship seem to have all but disappeared.  Where did they go? 

You're first reaction will probably be that they're haters.  They are jealous of your relationship and are not talking to you because they want what you have. 


As a friend that has been banished out of the coupledom kingdom I can tell you that the hater explanation is truly rare.  And if your friends really are jealous and hating on your relationship, your friendship wasn't that strong to begin with. Honestly, most of your friends are really happy that you have someone to love.  They're happy that you're happy.  If your friends have backed away it's usually because:

You Only Do Couple Things
A lot of times, friends who have boo's only hang out with other friends that have boo's.  So if you don't have one, you're left out of a lot of the activities.  Never-mind trying to help out the single friends!  Have mixers with your boo's single friends in hopes to help your singles become new couples?  NOOO! You just leave them out in the cold. And though you're single friends are flying solo, they can still be invited over for cookouts, birthdays, and game nights. We're not predators.  We're not going to use our single wiles to lure your boo's away. You don't only have to invite other couples! Sad thing is, most of you don't even realize you're leaving out your single friends. 

You've Gotten Annoying
Let's just be honest.  Many of you new couples are annoying.  With your baby talk, your constant attached to the hip-ness, and the public displays of affection. All you do is talk to each other and about each other while staring in each other's eyes.  Nothing else and no one else matters. Sometimes you two just make your single friends feel like the third wheel. Sorry. We're happy you're happy but no one wants to be around all of that.   

Your Relationship Needs Time To Grow - You Don't Need Us Like That Anymore
Friends know that in order for a relationship to flourish, you have to step back a bit.  Let the two of them spend time together and get to know each other.  Things that you all used to do together as a group of friends now become more activities for you and your sweetie.  For example, there's no need to call up your friends every Friday night to see what they're doing when you and your new partner can do things together.  Instead of checking out the newest movie premiere with your best friend, you take your new boo.  Going to dinner?  Take your girlfriend.  Staying in and chilling?  Call your boyfriend.  

Ultimately, the things that you used to do with your friends now become couple activities.  That's not a bad thing.  However both the friend and the one in the relationship have to remember to reach out to one another every now and then to keep the friendship strong. Both have to make it a point to continue to talk and do things together so neither feel neglected.

As a friend on the outskirts, I have admittedly not reached out as much as I should just because I automatically assume that my friends are with their partner. And for the most part they usually are.  So I think that if they were available they'd reach out to me.  At the same time I know that my friends are wondering where I've gone, and why I don't call or invite them out as much as I used to.  I think as the friend in an effort to be respectful to the relationship we can pull away too much and put too much of the responsibility on the friend in the relationship to reach out.  At the same time, I think the person in the relationship has to work a lot harder to reach back to the friends and make that space in their lives for them.

In general both the friend and the friend in the relationship need to find a balance between giving space and being around. Both have to make special time for one another to keep the friendship alive. To be honest, most of that responsibility is going to fall on the friend in the relationship.  You have more things to work around.  You're time is going to be a bit more restricted than the single friend.  If you're friend calls you up more than a few times and you're always saying 'Oh I'm out with such-and-such' or 'Oh me and blah-blah-blah' already have plans, the less your friend will call you. The more comfortable you make your friends with the fact that you still want to hang out with them, the more the friends will be willing to call you.  

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Say Something

1:00 PM |

Telling your girl about her man...

So you have some information about your friend's man.  Maybe he's got another girl on the side.  Maybe he's talking bad about her in public.  Maybe you had a one time fling with him long before they got together.  Maybe you had a fling with him while they were together not knowing they were a  couple. Wether it's an opinion or information, you have something that you know about her man that she does not. What do you do?  Do you tell? Or do you keep your mouth shut?

It is entirely possible for you to decide not to get involved.  If things seem to be going good for her and her man, then why rock the boat. She seems happy. Saying anything could make you just seem like a hater. It could be taken in completely the wrong context and she could totally get mad at you for something that's not entirely your fault or your problem.  So while it may be important for you to be a good friend and be totally honest, saying anything to her might do more harm than good.

On the other hand, if information comes out later and it is discovered that you knew the entire time, you could still be in hot water.  If you do have some secret about her man, he could use that against you- blackmail. He could make your role in anything seem more deceptive and dirty than it actually was. She'll feel like you were lying to her.  She could think you were allowing her to be played for a fool.  Friends are supposed to look out for one another right? How could you do that to her?

In my opinion, the latter is worse than the former.  I would much rather be as up front and as honest with my friends as I need to be.  I refuse to have anything out there that could potentially be used against me.  And I most certainly do not want to be perceived as a liar by my good friends. If you were indeed my friends, then you would know that I would never say or do anything to intentionally hurt.  I would always have your best interest at heart and nothing I would say would be me being a hater.  And if I was being a hater, I'd tell you.  I've done it before.  I would hope my friend would know me better and that if I ever had information that I really needed to share with my friend that they would take it as it were intended.

So in the end, I say: Say something.  It's better to deal with the repercussions now than let something that didn't need to build up explode on you and your friendship later.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Off To A Good Start

12:00 PM |

Have you set yourself up for failure?

Can a relationship survive if it was started or built from a 'not good' situation? If the two of you weren't totally honest in the beginning, does your relationship have a chance to go the distance? If one was on the rebound, the other transitioning from the jump-off, could their relationship be lasting? Can you find perfection out of an imperfect situation?

I think it's very hard to build a solid foundation on rocky ground. Those things that you chose to ignore to start a relationship, have ways of sneaking back in later on down the line.  If you got with your man while he was still involved with another woman, in the back of your mind you will always be wondering if he is to be trusted.  If you are fresh out of a relationship and you just jump right into another one, you run the risk of throwing all of the old baggage and unleashing all the unresolved issues from the past relationship onto your new boo. Things you attempt to ignore instead of resolve have a way of embedding themselves into your subconsciousness. These things will sneak up on you when you least expect them to.  They'll cause you to overreact to every day, average annoyances. They fester.

When a relationship is young, it's supposed to be exciting, new and fresh. In this whole 'getting to know you' period, you should be eager and happy to learn more about the person you are spending time with. A new relationship shouldn't be filled with heavy arguments, frustration, suspicion and distrust. The bond you two are attempting to build hasn't had time to develop yet.  It's not strong enough to withstand all of this. Thus when the first sign of adversity rears its head, new relationships often tumble if they weren't built on a solid foundation to begin with.

In general I think if you don't start of right, you greatly reduce the chances of survival. If it doesn't seem like it's the right time to enter into a relationship with someone, trust your instincts.  It's better to wait until the time is right than to rush and ruin the chance of it ever happening.

Interested Signal #2.....

To continue the discussion we started with the first post, we're going to talk about another HUGE way a woman shows that she's interested in a man.

---Interested Signal #2---
She Returns Your Calls

If a girl is truly interested in you, you'll hear from her.  No matter how busy she is.  It may not be long drawn out conversations every time.  It may not even be during normal hours.  But if she's feeling you, she'll return your calls, texts, IMs. There is not a single woman I know, who will not find some way, any way, to talk to a guy she's feeling.  

No one I know is busy all day.  They may have a busy day/busy life, but they're not busy all day. They take bathroom breaks.  Eat.  Walk to a car.  Ride an elevator. Turn in to go to sleep. There are moments where they can slip in a simple "I'm thinking of you/I got your message/Hi" text or quick phone call. There are even apps that let you leave a voice mail so that if you wanted to call during an hour when you know he may be asleep you can find a way to do that without disturbing you.  All these ideas of playing hard to get and making him chase you go out the window.  Sure we will try not to be OVERLY available.  But you will hear from us.  That is a promise.

Girls who don't call back, who don't respond when you want to get together are not interested.  A lot of times you can be a really nice guy and she may just not be feeling you in that way.  Not knowing how to tell you that without seeming like a bitch is what often leads a girl to be 'sometimey'.  Some times she talks to you.  Some times she doesn't.  Some times she responds.  Some times she doesn't.  

One of the surest ways to know that a girl isn't really interested is if you talk to her, discuss hanging out, then when the day comes to actually hang out she's no where to be found.  You know she's not busy.  She's told you that.  But alas, she's seemed to all but vanish.  Not saying that she's stood you up technically.  Because what will not have happened in that last conversation will be any concrete plans made.  You guys will just discuss what you may want to do, but she'll be gone when it's time to set the definite plans.  I'll admit it, I've done that move myself.  For me, it was just easier than saying I don't like you like that. I feel it was less harsh to just go missing than to actually come out and say the words. It's wrong. I know it. And If necessary I'd do it again.

Bottom line, people make time for who and what they want to make time for.  No matter how busy they are. So if they're not getting back to you, it's not because they can't "find" the time, they just don't want to make the time.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Random Thought

12:00 PM |

Heard this one too many times...

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Sweaty Hoes

1:21 PM |

Sweetie, you stink...

Can you believe there are women out there that believe every man is sweating them?  I mean, this girl is just so fine that no man, gay, straight, married, single, can resist her.  They call her all the time. Text her non stop.  Always want to come by and see her.  She is just the like your girl Tamar Braxton would say.  And we know this about this girl because she feels the need to always tell us.


Girl please. I can't stand a sweaty hoe.  Anything a guy does, even if it's a polite gesture, means they want her.  She exchanges eye-contact with a guy: he's sweating her.  Man opens the door for her: he's sweating her.  A guy gives her a simple compliment: he's sweating her. SHE gives a guy her phone number, tells him to call and when he does: he's sweating her.  SHE continues to call guys, flirt with guys, reciprocate their advances: he's sweating her.

It's quite obvious that this girl is just jocking for attention.  And it's not from the guys. Sure she'll probably say things like this in front of men, with a small hope of them admiring her prowess - curious to know why.  But we all know that the more you talk about being with other men around men, the less they want you. (Unless they just want a free ride).  No, no.  Things like this are said to get attention from other women.

These kinds of girls use talk like this to try and assert some type of dominance.  The whole I'm better than you, I'm prettier than you and you can tell by all these guys who want me... Don't you want to be me... Please envy me....  Most women aren't even phased by these girls because we know that 1) the more you talk about it, the less likely it's true and 2) many of the women are out there doing the most to get all this 'sweat'.  We all know that if all this 'sweat' was so truly annoying and inconvenient (as you try to make it seem) you'd find a way to make it stop if you really wanted it to.  Honestly you come off a just sorry. Besides, half of what you are talking about things that negate the idea that you're being sweated in the first place.

How are you being 'sweated' when you're returning calls and text messages?  How are you being 'sweated' when you gave him your number and called him first?  I'm supposed to be believe he's sweating you and you've been spending nights at his house like 4 days this week? You spend most of your time all up in his space. That's what 'he's sweating me' means now?

No boo-boo.  You constantly requesting and reciprocating attention from a guy does not mean he's sweating you. You can stop telling us about this.  We know what you do, how you do and we are not impressed.  We truthfully could care less.  The only reason we're even taking time to talk about this, is because you're taking up too much of our valuable time to discuss this bullshit. We got things to do.

Get over yourself.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Moment of Simple

I'm on a Mission...

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Coupons on a First Date?

12:27 PM |

Smart or dating faux pas...

So there has been some talk out there about wether or not it is appropriate for a man to pay for a first date by using a coupon.  Depending on who's talking about it you could get some extreme reactions.  Some people feel that it cheapens the date and that using one takes away from the whole wine and dine experience. Many times coupons restrict what you can order off a menu and no woman wants to feel like she's being told what she can or can't have. It could send signals that you are broke or cheap and that's a complete turn off to a girl. It could even potentially mean you're stingy and that has a tendency to reflect a lot of things about you as a person. Who knew one little coupon could send all these signals!

For me, I don't care if you pay with a coupon or not, as long as you pay. You shouldn't be making a big production out of paying anyway so why should I see how you've paid?  I don't believe I should see anything with regards to a bill when I'm out on a date with a guy.  I shouldn't see the bill.  I shouldn't see your card.  I shouldn't see the money you put in. I shouldn't see the tip you leave.  I just believe it should all be discreetly handled, as much as possible.  Therefore there shouldn't be an instance where I see the coupon.  Unless you make a big deal about it, but then, why would you do that?  I don't think you have to lie or be sneaky about it either.  And let me just say too that I think any man that makes a big deal about paying, how much he paid, or any thing of the sort is very un-gentelman like.

Tacky *rolls my eyes*.

I'm all about a good discount.  There are so many ways to get one these days and it's so easy you'd be dumb not to take advantage of it.  I don't care if you got a $20 dinner for 2 coupon from Living Social.  All I hear is... 'that means is I can go to BLT Steak?!?' In these times, doing more with less is a great thing.  Plus that means you'll have more money to do other things with later on that night or even for the next date. It's just being fiscally responsible.

Ultimately, I think how you've treated your date during the entire evening means more than how you've paid for the date.  The amount of money you spend has no correlation to your ability to wine and dine and woo a woman.  If you've got enough swag you can wine and dine your date at a burger bar for $2.99.  I seriously doubt any good woman will be so turned off by a little coupon that she tosses out all of the great things and connection you've made over the time you've spent out.  If she does - red flag.  She's not the one you want to spend time with anyway.

(Oh but please understand that while it may be probably will get talked about and laughed at a bit by your girl and her girls.  Not that we don't like you or that it's bad, but it'll be something that will get picked on.  Just thought you should know.)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Know Your Role: Rules for the Jump-off

1:00 PM |

Preventing VIOLATIONS!!

There are so many of you out there involved in the role of a jump-off.  Some of you know that's what you are.  Some of you do not.  In either case, I think it's important for many of you to understand that there are RULES with regards to handling your jump off.  Based on many of the stories I hear, I many of you are in violation of these rules.  So I think it is important to go over the top 5 Jump-off Rules before your Saturday night...'jumps off'.

Rule #5: Sun is up, Jump-off is out.
Activities that involve the jump-off typically occur during the darkest of hours.  Therefore, once the sun has begun to rise on the dawn of a new day, that jump-off must be out of your house.  No pillow talk.  There should never be a moment where your jump-off is lingering around the house in the morning, making breakfast, cuddling. No.  Violation! The only exception to the sunlight rule is if the jump-off is there to fulfill their duties during a daytime romp.  However once that romp is complete, they are to leave immediately. They have served their purpose.  Time for them to go on.

Rule #4: Ready and Willing.
A jump-off should always be ready to get it in.  Don't you EVER show up at your jump-off's house so drunk that you can't perform.  It completely defeats the purpose.  There is no time for a quick nap. If you pass out in the bed, please be prepared for whatever rude awakening you may have coming to you.  It will be the most miserable moments of sleep you've ever had in your LIFE.  Nobody has time for you to have a man down situation.  Get up *snaps fingers* you have things to do. And if a jump-off EVER pukes at your house.  No.  Violation! All that does is take away from the business handling time and pushing you closer to being in violation of rule #5.

Rule #3: No Food For You.
Jump-offs are not to be roaming through your kitchen cabinets, in your fridge, eating up any of your food. No you will not get a sandwich made for you. Nor breakfast. You may not even get any of this coffee on the counter. (You're supposed to be gone anyway). There will be no wining and dinning the jump-off.  You eat before you get to the house. You eat after you leave the house.  Exceptions can and could be made in the event of marathon, back breaking, muscle cramping festivities. This food only serves to refuel and help power you up for the next round. However the nourishments made will require the minimalist of effort (ie: crackers, fruit, cold-cuts right out of the package - anything that doesn't require the use of dishes) and should be prepared and eaten by the person who needs it only.  You are not to cook for your jump-off.  No sit down meals at a table. No. Violation! That only leads to conversations that start to make the jump-off believe that there's something more.

I don't care how many nights they spend at your house.  I don't care if you see them more than you see your own family.  I don't care if you've even spent weeks and days with this person.  THEY ARE NOT YOUR BOO!!!  You should not engage in any activities with this person that would make them think otherwise (talking, feeding, taking them out, sharing your dreams). No! No! No! VIOLATION!!! Failure to treat a jump-off like they are what they are will lead to unnecessary arguments, stress, and busted up cars.

Rule #1: You will at all times BE PROTECTED!
Engaging in a jump-off relationship is extremely risky.  You must be smart.  You must be truthful There are no emotional ties here, so there's no reason to lie or be deceitful.  That is extremely dangerous in a jump-off situation. You must be SAFE.  If either of you do not have the appropriate protection you must either go out and get it, or call the night off.  There should NEVER be an instance, especially with your jump-off, that you engaged in unprotected sex. NEVER. NEVER. NEVER.  Both of you are responsible for protecting yourself and each other and the other people that may be involved with you.  Get tested and feel free to ask one another to see those results.  Failure to do so will render this jump-off arrangement null and void.

I'm having a little but of fun here but in all seriousness folks, rule #1 is the most important rule of all and truly should be the primary one you adhere to.  Too many people have gotten caught out there and have been fortunate enough to end up with just a kid.  They could have ended up with something harder to shake and much more difficult to live with. Be smart. Be careful.

So those are the top 5 rules for the Jump-off.  Hope you've learned something today and that you will be smarter out there tonight.  Follow the rules.  Pick well.  Protect yourself.