Thursday, September 1, 2011

Friendship, Dating and Relationships--(Part 2)

“When you know you’re ready for Commitment!”

Once upon a time there was a man, who met a woman. They fall in love, got married, had lots of babies and lived happily ever after. Yeah right! If only it where that simple. Now I love a great fairytale, in fact, the Little Mermaid and Sleeping Beauty are two of my all-time favorites. I wonder who came up with the concept of “happily ever after”. Well, whoever it was, must have been a hopeless romantic. Life as we all live and know it takes more than just meeting, to the altar and the white picket fence. If it where that simple, would we still want it? Would we truly embrace it and do all the necessary things to keep it that way? Would we fall in love for the first time and be totally and completely satisfied with that person forever? What happens if in a few years, you both become bored with each other, unable to even sit in the same room for more than ten minutes without getting on each other’s nerves? What happens if you love them deeply but cannot stand them as a person? What happens if the sex is whack? These are all questions we should ask ourselves before placing a label on our relationships. I think that we all need to take a good look, a really good look at every aspect of our life before bringing another person along for the ride, which brings me to the main question of this post, “when do you know you’re ready for commitment”.

The more I thought about this particular topic, the more I thought about all the relationships, serious, committed relationship I’ve had and thought that if someone would have given me the insight, the less time and energy I would have wasted. But I am thankful for the lessons learned along my journey. Now, I have only been in about five relationships that I would call serious and each time I took something positive away from them. I became a more cautious person, who had to reevaluate myself before I could get to a point where I didn’t just want to rush into something, but instead take it slow, get to know each other on a friend level and then determine whether or not I wanted or was even capable of going into something more serious. I have always been able to be by myself if it came to that but who wants to be along when you’re young, full of energy, with raging hormones? I’m not saying that you should have sex with everyone you embark into a relationship with but let’s just be realistic. No one waits anymore in this day and age. First, we see someone attractive enough. Go out a few times and by the third date. Sex is bound to take place. It’s not anything that I agree with because I would want my daughter to wait until marriage to share her most prized gift with her husband, but what can I do if that doesn’t happen?
I can only hope that she keeps the values and morals instilled in her, that she will remember them as she enters the dating world. I am so glad that we haven’t come to that yet! (Help me Baby Jesus!)

It didn’t happen for me that way, but is it wrong to want better than what happened for us for our offspring? That is why I think there should be a few questions to help gear us down the right path. I have come up with questions one should ask his/herself before leaping into something they will probably regret in the long run. I think that the answer to all the questions should be selfless in order to truly know if one is ready to move from the friendship, to dating, to relationship, to a commitment. Commitments are not meant to be broken, should be taken seriously and each one involved feelings and emotions should be taken into full consideration before taking the plunge. Here goes, feel free to leave comments or send emails to with any responses, questions or any other information you think we should know about. Like I say all the time, I am no expert nor do I profess to be. These are merely my thoughts and insight from life experiences and speaking with friends about their journeys.

1.       Do you wake up each morning thinking of only yourself? If you answered yes, you really have problems. In order to be in a serious relationship, you have to think of others, putting them and their needs before yourself. Who wants to be with a selfish asshole?

2.       Do you have to have sex every day? Being in a serious relationship, you will not have sex every day. There will be things that come up that won’t allow it. Sure, the two of you will enjoy each other very much, but unless you know something that I don’t, you will not be doing the do 365 days of the year. If you know something we need to know that can change that fact, please let a sista in on that! LOL Seriously, the body needs at least a day or two to recuperate.

3.       Do you want children? Be sure to make it clear to the person you consider becoming serious with know this beforehand. I know a few couples who ended up breaking up because one wanted kids and the other didn’t but didn’t share that bit of information before things got to the point that marriage was in the works. Just be honest with yourself and the other person.

4.       How is your credit? Whatever baggage you bring into a relationship and it turns into marriage, will follow. Being responsible will eliminate that question from even coming up. We all have probably been there and done that, especially if you have attended college. The companies throw yourselves at you. You can basically get as many credit cards as you like and suffer in the end if you do not read the fine print or be responsible. Using the card for only emergencies or not just making the minimum payment will keep you from suffering in the future. Credit card debt is the number one financial problem most couples face to date. So, have your finances secured.

5.       Do you allow your family to interfere or dictate your relationships? No woman or man will allow that to go on forever. If you are with someone right now who does, lucky you. But in the end, who wants to be with a pushover? Have a backbone. Treat others as you want to be treated. And no one wants to be with a mother’s boy. Yes, we want you to love, respect and treat your mother wonderful because that is ultimately the way we want you to treat us, but there is a limit. Mama cannot run her household and yours too. We can get alone and be merry or we can just be cordial and keep it moving!

6.       Do you have to go clubbing every weekend? Now don’t get me wrong a little partying never hurt anybody, but being at the club every time it opens, is too much. If you have a good man/woman at home, why are you at the damn club? You know what happens at the club or the kind of people who always there. Don’t put yourself in situations you won’t be able to explain. Hell, don’t even have to explain. I love dancing but I do not be at the club shaking my ass. I will just turn up the music and have my own club. Do it together and who knows what will happen after the last song is played!

7.       Do you take care of yourself? No one wants to be with someone, no one else wants. Enough said!

8.       Do you have a five yr. plan? No one wants to be with someone who doesn’t have goals, realistic goals. Have something to offer in the relationship. Don’t expect someone to just take care of you and you cannot take care of yourself. Want something out of life so that when you are ready to retire, you can. When you want to buy something, you can.

9.       Do you praise materialistic things? Is your car off-limits from eating? Will you get mad if someone accidentally stepped on your new shoes or spilled something on your clothing? Things come and go. There are people in the world without clean drinking water, decent food to eat so don’t think that because your Jordan’s or Polo got messed up it is a big damn deal! You can be the cleanest person on the outside and ugly as hell on the inside. Things come and go. Grow up!

10.   Do you talk to more than three people on the phone, via text or email on a daily basis? When thinking of being in a committed relationship, this is a no-no. The only person that should be on your mind is the person whom you want to be with. They should be all you need to brighten your day, make you smile or get your motor running. Each time you see them, get a text or call from them, you should get butterflies. If you need other people to fill each void, then you are clearly not ready for a committed relationship. When you get lonely because you are not able to be with the one you want to be with, due to work or other situations and you have to call someone else to occupy your time, you should just continue the dating or friendship phrase. As I said before, feelings and emotions are nothing to play with, period.

11.   Do you already give kids? Children play an important role in dating. They will eventually determine if you will be in a serious relationship, period. I am not saying you should live or base your love life on your children but they do have a say whether you like it or not. This will also let you know if the person you are considering getting serious with will treat your kids as their own. You cannot let everyone meet your kids. (I will be discussing this particular topic later on this month in more detail)

12.   Are you ready to join friendships? If you have friends that you are not willing to introduce to your mate then you may not be ready to settle down. I believe that in relationships, your friends and their friends should become “our” friends. That way, there is no confusion.

13.   Are you ready to be considerate with your time? Spending quality time with someone is essential in making any type of relationship work. Will you be able to make time if time is an issue to show that you are willing to do whatever it takes where your relationship is concerned? Are you ready to share your whereabouts with someone? Yes, he/she will ask and expect an answer. If you always talk or text and then suddenly the routine are broken where periods of time go by without contact, but prepared to have to answer questions or explain yourself. Don’t incriminate yourself or become a liar. It’s simple, if you are not ready to do this; you need a little more time.

The list can go on and on but what good would that do? It really only take the first two or three questions to determine whether or not you are ready for something serious, where relationships are concerned. It’s not rocket science.  It’s life and at some point, we all get to the point when we want to stop playing, being alone and get serious. Coming home to an empty house, eating dinner alone, going to sleep and waking up alone isn’t an option anymore. Having a different person in our bed becomes irrelevant. This is when one will know that he/she are ready to be in a committed relationship. The choice becomes simple. The only question is then is, do we have the right person who feels the same way about us as we do them. True, sometimes we get there only to find out that we are not there with the right one. This sucks but it does happen! If it didn’t, there wouldn’t be any Divorce Attorneys now would it? So take things slow, get to know yourself in order to be open to learning others and when you do, give it your all! Life is a gift, today is a present and tomorrow is a blessing, should it come! I have been in relationships were I was ready and thought the person I was with was too, only to get heartbroken in the end. We all know the, “it’s not you it’s me” line. I want to slap the person who invented that shit! Once there is an emotional connection with someone, it is hard as hell to let go and just move on to the next person. If you can do that, the relationship was clearly not as deep as you thought it was. Take your time. Make sure you know when you know when you know! Besides, when all else fails, your heart and mind will be in agreement and confirm that you are ready, with the person who you are ready to go forth on the best adventure of your life!  

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