You’re Bad For My Spirit

The older I have gotten, I have realized that, in dealing with the opposite sex, that it is of the utmost importance to take care of yourself first.  Not your man.  Not your woman. No one else but you. YOU.  If you allow them, people will suck the life out of you and take all of  you.  Why?  Because people are selfish as f*ck.

About two years ago, I met a guy (I’m sure I’ve referenced him here before; I just don’t feel like going back and linking previous posts) at an alumni event.  The first year passed without much incident. That second year…. We went on dates, we hung out, we laughed, things were good. Until they weren’t.  The last time he and I spoke in August, I told him that we should make a clean break, and if we see each other in the street, we say “What’s up?” and keep it moving.

Earlier this week, my phone rings.  I think it’s my eye doctor, so I answer. It’s this dude. (Huh????) He says he’s calling to find out if I’m going to a football game our alma mater is having later this month and that I crossed his mind and he thought about me.  I asked him if he remembered our last conversation, to which he replied yes.  This is then how the conversation went:

Me: If you remembered then I don’t think you would be calling me. 

Him: Why do you say that? 

Me: Because I told you that we should make a clean break.  But here you are calling me after three months.  A few weeks after our conversation, I told a friend of mine about you, and she was playing devil’s advocate.  She thought that maybe I should give you the benefit of the doubt and that I didn’t make myself clear with what I wanted while we were dealing with each other.  

Him: OK.

Me: So that there is no confusion, I don’t like talking to you.  You’re bad for my spirit.

Him: Oh, that’s cryptic. 

Me: How so?  

Him: Uhhhhh…

Me: If you don’t understand, say so so that I can explain it to you. 

Him: I don’t understand. 

Me: Then I’ll explain it to you.  I’m in my 30s. I’m passed the point in my life where I’m dating just to date.   And I’m done going back and forth with you.  Over the past two years, it’s been up and down and sometimes we’re dating and sometimes we’re not. So we just need to cut our losses and keep it moving. 

Him: Ok.

Me: So, again, so that I can make it clear, I don’t want to be your friend.  You keep popping back up in my life and I’ve got way too much going on to try to figure out what you want from me every few months.  So you have fun with whatever you’re doing tonight, tomorrow, whenever. Bye.

Today, this post is for ladies in general.  Single ladies in particular. Those single ladies that have had to deal with men that take us for granted.  Those men that feel they can play with our emotions.  Those men that are sometime-y.  Those men that are non-committal. Those men that feel like they can treat us any ol’ type of way.  And think that we are going to stay around to put up with it. Take back yourself, ladies. Take back your strength. Take back your independence. Take back your courage. And let these men know that we’re not putting up with their sh*t anymore.  We deserve better.  And these boys that think they’re men are going to continue to treat us this way if we allow it.  So demand better.  Treat yourself better.  You deserve it.  Don’t let these boys mess with your spirit; they’re not worth it.

Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

I Should Have Stayed On My Hiatus

Awhile back a dude approached me.  He seemed nice, was attractive, and said all the right things.  Despite my reservations, we became official.  He talked a good game – he was older and divorced but stated he was tired of dating and wanted to re-marry.  And was open to having more children (he already has one).  So, I decided to be open and give a relationship with him a go.  After not hearing from him for 72 hours (yes I called and left a message), I decided that I was done and whatever we had was over.  Which apparently was on his mind as well, because he decided to tell me that I could date other people…via a text message.  (I swear I can’t make this stuff up.)  I feel like he took the coward’s way out.  He’s a man of a certain age, so he should at least have been ballsy enough to pick up the phone.  Yes, I understand that this may not seem like a big deal to some, but it was for me.  Despite the fact I let my guard down and opened up to this man, I told myself that 2016 was the Year of Elle.  No dating, no relationships-just focusing on myself and school.  They always say that love comes when you least expect it, and please believe I was not expecting this man to walk into my life.  However, I should have known to trust my gut.  And if that leads to others thinking I’m cynical, I don’t care.  I’d rather protect my heart than to look like a fool.

Oh, and the guy from this post….GREAT conversation last night!  Because long distance relationships have not worked for him in the past, he will not date me because we live 6 hours apart.  Which I’m totally ok with.  I said we could just be friends and that would be fine by me.  However… he ended the conversation with, “Good night, beautiful”.  I had to let him know that that was not acceptable; we’re not dating, and we’re just friends, so there’s no need to blur the lines with terms of endearment.

No more dating for Elle in 2016.  I mean it.  I am TOTALLY going to focus on me and getting my stuff together for school, my physical health, and my mental capacity.  I just don’t have the energy anymore to put into “potentials” that may not go anywhere.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

 

So, I May Have Been a B*tch

….but I don’t really think so.  Let me give a little background.

(Oh, first, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!  I hope you all had a great holiday season!  Ok, back to this post.)

I met a guy in late 2014. After going back and forth multiple times with nothing ever panning out, he reaches out to me a year after we met.  Homeboy has done a COMPLETE 180-texts every day, calls me at night (like 6 pm-after-work-night, not 11 pm-booty-call-time-night), is real anxious to take me out.  Then he disappears.  And re-appears.  And disappears.  And re-appears.  Most recently, he invited me over this weekend and cooked for me.  I REALLY wanted to say “No” (he’s inconsistent, plus, I told myself I’m not dating in 2016), but homeboy said steak.  I mean, it’s not like it was chicken; it was a freakin’ steak!  So after church, I moseyed on over and we broke bread. And watched movies.  Until I had to go.  (Previous plans and always keep them wanting more.)

Before I left, we made plans to go to the movies this week.  He was supposed to call and let me know what time he was picking me up.  We talked about chivalry and how it wasn’t dead and how he was going to do better (in the being a gentleman department).  After pushing our movie date back by a day after I texted and asked what time I need to be ready, I called him last night on my way home to find out what time he was coming to pick me up.  He said he was still in “work mode” and hadn’t really thought about it.  I said, cool, but when you figure it out, call me, ask me out, and let me know what time I need to be ready.  Now, this is where the b*tch part comes in.

I could have EASILY done some things around the house and waited for homeboy to call me.  But noooooooo…..I find look for a link that gives tips on being chivalrous and send it to him.  (Now say it with me, “Oh, Elle”.)  I thought it might be comical, and I even prefaced it by saying, “Since we were discussing this earlier this week…” so it wouldn’t seem (as) harsh.   Can you believe homeboy then sent a message saying he was too STRESSED to go out, but that he appreciated me and that he was going to work on him???  So my text may have been a little itchy with a “b” in front of it.  And it doesn’t help that Southern Cousin AND Southern Dad have said that I may be too hard on guys.  But shoot, if a little text message about chivalry stresses you out, you probably don’t need to go out with me (or anybody else) anyway.

While I was a little shocked at first, you know, I’m actually kinda glad he bailed.  I definitely dodged a bullet.  What bullet?  It doesn’t matter.  Homeboy wasn’t stable/consistent anyway and most certainly is not the type of man that I need in my life.  Hasta luego….or not.

Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

 

The Beginning of Something New

At the end of 2014, I met a guy.  We spoke, we laughed, we joked, but we didn’t take things seriously, and eventually, we stopped communicating.  Or maybe I didn’t take things seriously.  He was significantly younger than me, plus he lived 6 hours away.  Not to mention I wasn’t really focused on dating since I had way too much going on in other aspects of my life.  Fast forward 5 months, and we start talking again.  During the month of July we hangout for an extended amount of time.  What I thought might be awkward wasn’t.  It may have been the most comfortable I’ve felt with a man ever.  It was at that time, homeboy realized he was serious about me.  Like REALLY serious.  And as TyAnthony likes to accuse me of, I enjoyed the attention, I’ll admit.  And I have been known to date men because of how much they are in to me and not necessarily because I’m into them.  So, I had to think and reflect – did I like this guy?  If I did like him, was it genuine?  Or, once again, did I like him based on how much he liked me?  And, did I even want to like him?

I have been known to keep a wall up.  I thought this was something only I knew, but TyAnthony and Antonio  called me out on it. So, after awhile, I decided if homeboy was going to be serious, I was going to be serious, too. Let my guard down, be open and honest, and lay my cards on the table.  So I am slowly giving him all of me.

So far so good, although two potential things (well really one) almost put a halt on things.  Well, maybe they were more to serve as a distraction.  First, a few weeks ago, I met a man while I was out with my linesisters.  We struck up a conversation, exchanged numbers, and made plans to hang out.  We danced, and his parting words were, “I’m not looking to be your friend. I’m looking for my life partner.”  Well, seemed like I was batting 1000 because you all know I like to keep my options open.  Sad to say, after one outing, ol’ boy disappeared.  Honestly, it was probably for the best as he has one non-negotiable that is at the top of my list.  The second distraction was an old beau that called out of the random blue.  (I probably should change my phone number.)

In any event, I decided to be open.  I had to tell myself, “Elle, if this man is really into you, he’s telling you the right things, more importantly DOING the right things, give him a chance and be open.”  So, that’s what we’re doing.  Yes, I told him about this blog, but I doubt that he has read it yet.  (Just my luck he’ll read this post.)  Anyway, wish me luck.  I am excited to see what happens.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

I’m An Optimist

Earlier this week, I had a discussion with a co-worker that focused on relationships, but it wasn’t a conventional relationship talk, if that makes sense.

He (late 20’s, in a relationship) was stating how he was having a conversation with his sister, and she said that “there are no good black men left.  Most are taken, in jail, or gay”.  Well, let me back up.  I can’t remember if his sister in fact made that statement or if his sister said she heard another woman make that statement.  (My memory’s bad.)  In any event, I told him that I don’t subscribe to that notion.  First, I don’t want to think negatively, because I truly feel that when I do begin to develop a relationship, the thoughts I had pre-relationship will follow me once I get into a relationship.  And I do not want to enter that with negative thoughts.  Second of all, I know a lot of great black men-I’m related to some, and my friends married others.  Of course, I said people only show you what they want you to see, but from my point of view, these were men who loved their wives and children and took care of their families. (Yes, you have dudes who are jerks out there, but that’s not limited just to black men.) And I truly believe that there is a man out there that God has made just for me.  Not sure where he is yet, or if we’ve even met, but God made Eve for Adam, so I don’t think that He meant for us to be alone.  And by us, I mean my future husband and me.

(So…as I look back over my statements, I can see how some can seem negative…maybe we should call Elle a realist; I take a realistic view at things.  No one has time to sugarcoat stuff-I’m getting too old for that.  Maybe you can compare me to your 70 year old Aunt Edna, the lady who never bites her tongue and says EXACTLY what’s on her mind.  But I’ll still practice a little tact.  😉 )

I’ve always looked at things with the glass being half-full.  And I believe that thinking has boded well for me.  Even in situations that were not so great and where things seemed dire.  For all of my single people, men and women, who are out there and think that there are no good women or men, that couldn’t be farther from the truth.  We just have to make sure that we can be a benefit to our mate when he finds us or when you find her.  Meaning, we have to make sure we are bringing our best selves to the table.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

Revamping My Dating Habits

Man and Woman Drinking at Bar

I have a friend, we’ll call her Michelle, who loves getting to know new people. When you talk to her, she’s so engaging that she makes you feel as if everything you said is the most interesting thing she’s ever heard. She’s confident, not cocky, and has the ridiculous ability to connect with people she just met. Not surprisingly, this girl has no problem in situations where she doesn’t know anyone. Her congeniality and charisma has gained her a great group of friends and helped her receive an offer for every job she’s ever interviewed for. But arguably more impressive, this girl has never had a bad first date.

I know.

Granted, it’s not like Michelle has a revolving door of men in and out of her life, but I would think even hitting 5-6 first dates and they’ve all been good is pretty damn impressive.

I have to admit, I held onto a little contempt for her since I’ve had my fair share of bad dates. But then I started thinking about some of the reasons she gave for why she thinks that they usually go so well, and admittedly, I realized there are a few things that I could be doing to make my dates better too.

One thing I learned I need to work on is giving people the benefit of the doubt. Everyone wants to put on their best impression during a first date. But there are plenty of things that could cause people to be off their game on a first date. Of course there are nerves, but sometimes, there are other things that might be making them uneasy. For example, my co-worker once told me that he had to leave a date early because he had horrible gas after eating a Fiber One bar. Apparently these things are no joke. There’s even a message board dedicated to the topic on My Fitness Pal, and the comments span over three years. The poor guy had no idea the bars caused such “unpleasant” side effects. He simply couldn’t stand it any longer, and had to cut the date short. His date left thinking he was a squirming weirdo and declined his invitation for a rain check.

When your date seems to be a little on edge (hopefully from nerves, not gas), Michelle says she’s tries to reassure them by saying something along the lines of “I was a little nervous but I’m having a great time!” or she compliments them on their restaurant choice or wardrobe.

And it’s not just Michelle that thinks it’s a smart idea.  A blogger over at “Adam and Eve” said that, “Most ladies will try and make an anxious date feel more comfortable,” in a recently shared dating guide for guys blog post. I tend to be more passive and I suppose I usually just absent-mindedly hope that the guy will make me feel more comfortable. I guess I figured that because he asked me out, he was confident and didn’t need reassurance. Now I’ll be more conscious about being just as complimentary to the guy as he is to me.

She also said that if her date’s nerves seem to be getting the best of them, she tries to take the reigns a little throughout the night. To engage her date, she asks them questions about things that they’re passionate about. She’ll also suggest something fun to do that won’t interrupt the night, like stopping for ice cream or popping into an interesting shop that they pass. Not only does it help take the pressure off of the other person, but it also gives you a sense of responsibility for having a good time throughout the night.

Finally Michelle said she always tries to keep an open mind. There are plenty of guys that turned out to be amazing once she got some one-on-one time with them. Even now she’s dating one such guy, and is still great friends with another. Obviously a lot of men and women are guilty of not giving the other the time of day if they don’t feel that “spark” right away. It seems like a waste of time when you don’t feel anything from the get go. But like the “Huffington Post” says, if you’re still single, it’s obvious that your past type hasn’t been working for you.” You’ll never know if there’s something better out there for you unless you give someone new a shot.

Maybe I won’t have a spotless dating record like Michelle, but by changing my own behavior, hopefully I’ll set myself up for some better first dates in the future.

lyf40

The One That Won’t Go Away

Some people cannot take a hint.  Guy A from this post is one of those people.

I didn’t go into details about all of the things wrong with this guy, so I’ll elaborate slightly.  He felt that I should cancel/change plans so we could go out.  He felt that I should respond to text messages IMMEDIATELY after he sent one.  He was jealous and insecure (oh, I think I mentioned that in my previous post).  After I didn’t respond to a text message quick enough on my way to church one Sunday, he sent a snarky reply.   That is when I told him to lose my number and have a nice life.  (Oh, he still sent me a message on G-Chat that afternoon; I quickly blocked him.)

That weekend is when DC was hit by Hurricane Sandy.  Two days later, he sent me a text to “check on me” and “make sure I was ok”, to which he got no response.  A week later, because I deleted his number, I answered a call from him.  He totally heard the shock in my voice.  After that call, I saved his number as DNA (Do Not Answer).

A year and a half later, he has popped back up.  A few months ago, he sent me a request to connect on LinkedIn.  And just this week he requested to follow me on Twitter (on my private account).  You would think that after not speaking with someone in almost two years and making it PAINFULLY obvious that you have no desire to speak with or be involved with a person, he would go on his merry little way…but alas, that is not the case in this situation.  In 2012, TyAnthony made sure to ask me if he knew where I lived, to which I was all too happy to state “no” and that he had never been to my house.

So what do you in this situation?  Do you continue to ignore this person that won’t go away?  Do you reach out and once again state to leave you alone?  (I won’t be doing that.)  On the flip side, what makes someone not go away?  What keeps making him reach out?  To see what I’m doing?  To try to make sure he stays in the forefront?  In any event, I wish he would crawl back into the hole he went in in 2012…and stay there.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.