Thursday, March 25, 2010

Question for the fellas: What’s up with your boy?

"Birds of a feather flock together" ~ William Turner, 1545

Thankfully, this is not always the case. But take a second and think about your last (or current) S.O. – don't you know ONE person in his/her crew that is side-eye worthy? I've spent the last eight years weeding out the crazy from my extended friend network but even I still have at least one friend (no longer close) that I have to apologize for. Fellas – how ya'll coming with that?

A BougieTale:

When I was dating Gene, I was always the one chick out with all the guys. I could watch and discuss sports, put on my iPod when the Madden marathon got crazy, hang out without complaining and turn a blind eye to thing that were absolutely none of my business. Guys weekend, it would be six of them and me. The things guys say when we are not around (or they forgot we were there) – whew boy! More than once Gene was like, okay – Michele is cool but she's still my girl… shut it! But as cool as I was, there was one dude in the crew that I could not stand. We'll call him Ricardo. I mean I disliked Ricardo with a passionate dislike usually reserved for Sarah Palin and allergy season.

He was a little too slick, seemed to be more of an ass-kisser with an agenda than a true friend. I didn't like the way he looked at me and his treatment of the women in his life – whoa. He was a hustler and I didn't understand why Gene didn't see it. When he was invited out, I would find a reason to cut my portion of the evening short. On more than one occasion, I literally had to issue ultimatums – him or me for the evening. I won (of course) but why did we even have to take it there? In fact when our relationship imploded, one of the complaints I lodged was that Gene was way too quick to put everybody else ahead of me on his priority list… including hustling-ass Ricardo. When last we spoke civilly, lo and behold – Ricardo had been caught doing something shady and Gene realized that I was right about him all along. Umm-hmm.

Two of the letters I received:

Chele, my boyfriend has this one friend that I cannot stand. He is sloppy, messy, loud and frequently drunk. He cannot keep a girlfriend and tend to enjoy nights at the strip club a little too much for my comfort. They were line brothers and I've been told that "that's just the way he is". The only real drama we have is when my S.O. goes out with that guy. He inevitably rolls in late and drunk. He goes God know where, does God knows what and I've really started to feel like it's disrespectful to me. Can we ask the fellas what that's about? How you pick your boy over your S.O.?

Hey OneChele, my husband has a friend that he is stuck in a co-dependent cycle with. The two of them came up together in rough circumstances. My husband turned the corner and made something of himself. His friend not so much. So he gets into all manner of scrapes and jams and my husband bails him out (literally and figuratively) every time. At some point, isn't enough enough? We got into a huge fight about it this past weekend because I said I thought he was actually doing him a disservice by covering him all these years. So my question is – who's right?

Alright then, I received about 15 questions asking me why you fellas can't cut loose your crazy/druggy/grabby-assy/loud-talking/dependent/slightly bitter running buddy? You know the one. Your girl does not like him. She never has. He probably doesn't like her either. You have gotten into trouble with/because of him before. But that's your boy.

Based on all of this – Looks like the questions of the day for the fellas are: Why can't you see when your boy ain't worth a damn? From question one, how/when do you put your boy above your S.O.? And from question two, are you helping your boy by carrying him along for years?

Ladies, what are your thoughts on all the bromance? And we are talking heterosexual bromance. Don't get it twisted. That other is for a different post. We are not discussing the down low today. Though it does bring to mind a hilarious episode of The Boondocks where this rapper Ganstalicious turned out to be gay. Here was one of the clues – Not Safe For Work and this is SATIRE, if you are easily offended, do not watch.

WARNING: The first person to use the phrase bros over hos (or any similar phrase) gets booted out of BougieLand for the day.

The floor is yours…

47 comments:

Inkognegro said...

Meh. Im REALLY particular about who I let around me, so there.

Lots of dudes just dont mind a whole bunch of guys in their crew. I aint those folks. Ima have to pass on this one too.

Deesha P said...

My only guess is that men have a higher b.s. tolerance *for other men* than we do. They'll kick a trifling sister to the curb in a minute...just like we do (if we're smart) to a trifling guy. So, um, same-gender bias/blindness/loyalty?

Inkognegro said...

Uh....no.

I know PLENNY of dudes who keep women around cause of the most superficial reasons. So do you.
We all do.

Deesha P said...

As usual, you are THAT GUY...that we can bring home to Mama, so you don't count, ha!

Deesha P said...

But we don't call all these folks our aces and let them trump our significant others. That's what I'm talking about. The ones we hold in high regard and no one from the outside looking in can figure out why.

Inkognegro said...

Men are normalized much better to build relationships with men than with women.

Those relationships are stoked in childhood and built through a lifetime of experiences.

We dont teach men to build with women like that.

Deesha P said...

Truth. So glad you are raising boys.

Angel G said...

I am dealing with this RIGHT NOW. E has this friend "Sam." Well, every excuse in the book has been made for Sam, including that his "best girl was his mama and when he lost her, he was just never the same..."

Really???

And I wonder what his mama would think of his womanizing, his inability to settle down and really be there for ANY of his babies' mamas, his need to go to the strip club and his jealousy over mine and E's relationship, calling him a "kept man" and me E's ball and chain.

The fact of the matter is, E is 36. He only settled down with me four years ago. I think part of
our struggles are related to that and to the fact that E's friends, all ranging in age from 37-44 ish...are mostly STILL SINGLE. I hear E talk. His group is filled with liars and cheaters and womanizers. And it scares me. But E doesn't get why.

Thanks for letting me get that off mah chest!!!

And great blog. I'm so glad I found it! (By following @inkognegro).

ASmith said...

I think most women have this issue with their boyfriends at some point and I still haven't seen a good way to deal because dudes are blind as hell when it comes to their friends -- and there's always the one dude who is EXTRA trouble and anytime you bring it up, you get the kanyeshrug.

And don't let him be an LB -- that's a done deal right there.

Meanwhile, men can't stand their girl's friends... the irony is ridic.

FreeBlackMan said...

My boy is my boy before you came and after you go. If you ain't Mrs. FBM, you have no say. Lemme know if he tries to grab ass otherwise... keep it moving.
Points for the Ganstalicious jawn.

brendakay50 said...

I just know that Riley is going to be the one getting the boot today! I just know it... :-)

OneChele said...

Welcome and h/t to @Inkognegro for the referral. It worries me when a grown-ass man (over 35) is still keeping trifling folks around. You would hope that at some point they outgrow the bullshiggitty. Well, at least E was smart enough to get and keep you so there's hope for him after all. ;-)

RoyalLee said...

I just drop kicked a "womb-to-tomb" guy, his "shiggitty" as you say, hit a level that actually put lives in danger. That's not cool. Granted, had I checked him back when his nonsense was low-level ... anyway - eventually we get it. Just don't nag us to hell and back, it doesn't help. Try to remember that he's been our boy since way back in the day and you're kinda new. Takes a minute for allegiances to shift.

rozb said...

Sometimes the last person to see a toxic relationship for what it is, is usually the two people in it. That includes friendships.

The best thing to do in these cases, is to make your point known about his "boy" (or her girl) as far as why you are not feeling this person. And say what you mean, not something that sounds like gossip or innuendo. Then leave it be. Stay cordial and classy, and if you have to leave your S.O. behind because of always choosing toxic over clean, then so be it. Don't make it personal with the T.F. (toxic friend). Because when you take the high road, the other person looks like the buster, not you.

Also, there are a lot of men with the same attitude as FreeBlackMan in that their boy can do no wrong, was there through all the hard times, and it has to get to the point where there is some "grab-assing" or other truly offensive behavior before he would put his boy in check. And who needs that kind of drama? Besides, anyone who keeps trying to pull benefits because of a strong past relationship while being a true jerk is not a good friend at all. I'm just sayin'...

Mocha Dude Speaks said...

I'll speak for the old-head guys. You learn to compartmentalize. I have a few friends that BeBe (my wife) cannot stand. So they don't see her and she doesn't see them except maybe once a year. They don't come hang out at my house. She has a friend or two that I feel the same way about. When you genuinely want to make it work with someone, you find a way to keep the peace.

To answer your questions - We aren't looking at our friends through the same lens you are so we don't see the same things. And truthfully, to us - he may just be a beer-drinking, football-watching buddy so we turn a blind eye to whatever else he has going on.

Unless my friend is in immediate physical distress (or jail) he does not get priority over my wife and kids. Ever. This is a covenant.

And no, it's not a good look to enable tragic behavior in your boys, that mess always slops over into your world. But again, we don't always see it.

Best thing to do is make us aware of your feelings (in a nice way) and let us work it out.

OneChele said...

Yep the line brother gets a pass on all measure of nonsense.

All Honey said...

Well aren't you a catch. You want to wait until your boy has his hand on my ass to put him in check? I suspect that's why you are so "free"

queenome said...

I get that the boys club is like a lifetime membership but once you enter into a relationship, you have to be mature enough to shift priorities and find a way to make it work. My ex would clown me over one girlfriend he couldn't stand while having his whole raggedy posse up in the house playing Xbox till all hours. So the bigger question is - who is willing to do what it takes to make it work?

theuppitynegro said...

I think FreeBlackMan said it best: especially if I'm not dating Mrs. Uppity Negress, then um, my friend was here before you got here and will be here when you go.

Which of course begs the question, then why are you dating her--but that's another blog topic I guess, lol.

But it also goes to the ability to compromise on both sides. Either side needs to compromise for the sake of the relationship, to which I say, if neither side wants to, then it's time to cut your losses and move on.

OneChele said...

Shh! Don't invoke the name...

LeonX said...

I've got nothing to add here. Two of my running partners got married within a month of each other, thus ending our hanging out together. Their wives think I'm the bee's knees. Heck when one of my friends got married again he and his now second wife asked me to be the MC at their wedding.

MeetCharlieL said...

ALL of my boys' SOs love them some me. I'm good people. in FACT, one of my line brothers got divorced last year, his wife and I still hang out. My last girlfriend has a friend ot two that were clearly side-eye worthy but as long as they weren't up in my biz - I wasn't up in theirs.

MeetCharlieL said...

This right chere. We love you ladies but don't come in the door dictating about things/people you know nothing about. Give it a minute before you remodel our lives, we don't know you like that yet.

ASmith said...

Sure, sure, sure -- your friends were here first -- we get that. But one of your friends is annoying for (enter some reason along the lines of "stays in trouble" here). We're telling you about that and there seems to be no interest on your part to rectify it. How you do it (keep us apart, limit your time with him, whatever...) is up to you.

There's a tone in what FBM said that also hints at "eff compromise." To me, that's a problem. If you're serious about our relationship, then we need to talk about the negative effects other relationships may be having on it.

Stank_0 said...

Hmmm....I think part of it is the duration of the relationship. Having moved around alot when I was little and I don't have that life-long friend. I have friends for stages in my life. Right now my tightest bond is with the first cat I met when I moved to the DMV.

SO still got a problem with my crew, because they are mostly single and divorced. She thinks that I'll become like that through osmosis? Fa serious?

I don't like most of her friends for various reasons, but I keep my tongue b/c her main clique been tight since undergrad. Ain't no way I'm gonna be able to break that up.

I think part of it is that the man-man relationship is so easy to maintain. Constant communication isn't necessary. Once the bond is established, it takes alot of work to break it.

I Am Me said...

A lot of this is age/maturity. When I was younger I was very concerned about keeping my crew tight. Now - meh. Working on keeping this new relationship rolling and praying it turns into something long lasting and good. If they are my boys, they'll be there. Right now - let me do what I gotta do with HER.

Sidebar: Not to start any ish but you ladies are WAY more clique-y with your friends than we could EVER be. IMHO

thinklikeRiley said...

Boondockery on BnB - that's what's up. But on this topic - ya'll on some old bullshyt. No way am I putting coochie over crew - no way, no how. You gotta earn it.

OneChele said...

And THERE it is. As Brenda Kay predicted, thou art bumped from BougieLand for the rest of the day. Be gone. Perhaps spend the day reading something deeper than an Archie Comic book. Buh-Bye now.

Sarah said...

Ah well. Contemplating this topic gives me a headache. And it reminds me of how pleasant it is to live now without all the stress. I'm going to leave the hornet's nest that is my memories on this topic be since otherwise the bees will be buzzing around my head all day. I think this is another example of how you know if somebody is right person for you to be with. My parents have been married almost 50 years and both sets of grandparents were married over 50 years. All three couples are/were very tight. Members of a team of 2 united against the trials and tribulations of life.

GrownAzzMan said...

I was going to post my GrownMan answer to a question that seems more directed to the 20-30 somethings on here but after reading what Mocha Dude Speaks wrote I will go with a simple, 'What He Said'.

brendakay50 said...

ROTFLMBO!!! I knew it, I knew it, I knew it! The temptation to was just too much for the child. No way was Riley NOT going to say something stupid. He just couldn't help himself. I'm going to double up my prayers for Riley. :-)

ASmith said...

Sidebar: Not to start any ish but you ladies are WAY more clique-y with your friends than we could EVER be. IMHO

True -- but only up against other females.

Like, you know, I got my old friends who always get priority over new friends, but not over someone I'm in a relationship with.

Anna N. said...

I don't even comment that much (but I read daily) and I knew Riley was gonna do it. Thanks for the laugh.

♞ they call me kj ♞ said...

to answer your question, a lot of times, it's loyalty. Especially in their 20s, men are very loyal to each other. as they grow up, have kids, have a family, that loyalty changes, and goes more onto the family that the man is working for. Also, like someone else said earlier, we don't look at our boys in the same scope that you (as women) look at our boys. For me personally, some of my boys are like me, some are way different. but we've made bonds via other things, whether it be church, or from around the way/school, or from college, and i personally don't like breaking those bonds just to appease my girlfriend. I will admit that i will listen to my wife on this matter...but for a woman to make it to "wife" she will have to learn to appreciate..or at least get along with my boys, just as i have to learn to tolerate her female friends.

For me, it's all about keeping a balance. Yes, i wouldn't want to be surrounded by my boys all the time, with no girlfriend, but i don't want to be that guy that has only his girlfriend, but none of his friends (because his boys realise that he's the one being kept away by his controlling GF, so no point in including him in a lot of the cool stuff...yes, that's what we think of you...controlling)

it seems like what you're suggesting from this post (and from the lady responses) that we cut ties if friends...if you don't like them. Have you found it neccessary to cut ties with female friends that your boyfriend at the time suggested you stop seeing them? Does your boyfriend (or your ex, ex-es) issue ultimatums as well?


i did find this entry funny, because women will believe accusations of their female friends, before they believe the protestations of their men..i won't do tit-for-tat on this one, lol


P.S. Shoutout to Riley!! Free Riley!!!

Violet Rose said...

Your comments were tripping for a second. But I think all of your questions this week hinge on the communication and maturity of all parties involved.

Violet Rose said...

We all knew it was coming. She did warn him. He's kind of a serial offender on here, isn't he!

Violet Rose said...

You are polite. There was a tone to what FBM said that screamed Eff All You Females.

OneChele said...

Hmm, a lot of interesting points in here.
P.S. Riley will be free tomorrow... if I remember to unblock that IP... ha!

Rob said...

I'll admit to having a trifling friend or two but like MochaDude said below - I've learned how to separate. Not everybody needs to be in everybody's back pocket all the time.

careycarey2 said...

I have to go waaaaay back 8 hours. I mean, Deesha P said "My only guess is that men have a higher b.s. tolerance *for other men* than we do. They'll kick a trifling sister to the curb in a minute...just like we do (if we're smart) to a trifling guy. So, um, same-gender bias/blindness/loyalty?"

Well, I couldn't have said it better.

But I will add... Coming through the door our boy is predictable (to a large degree). Er'body knows his moves and how he is going to show his ass. Now, women on the other hand (including our mates) can be a fickled bunch. Frequently woman are controled by their emotions and lord knows their harmone imbalance makes their behavior as unpredictable as the next earth quake.

So, in short, it's about one bird in the hand being better than any "bush" :-)

Seriously, although I am being a bit facetious, if ol'girl is not Mrs. Man, she has to realize she will never wear pants. And therefore, will never understand a man, so the question is good. Yawl should keep asking somebody. Yep, move out of your own way. You can't change Mister, or his ride or dies.

ASmith said...

I just read an article about former NBA player Antoine Walker who's now having to play in some subpar Puerto Rican league to make enough money to start paying back his debts. http://www.patriotledger.com/sports/x126578781/Life-caught-up-to-Antoine-Walker

This is despite the fact that he made over $110M during his career.

There's lots of reasons why this is the case, one of which seems to be his undying loyalty to his friends. One guy who ran in his circle was hired to oversee some multi-family properties he bought in Chicago. Ol' boy didn't do his job, but he took Antoine's money. Now Antoine's being painted as a slum lord.

Others of his friends walked away with personal loans (that we can assume won't ever be paid back) in the tens of thousands of dollars.

Now, I bring this up here because I'm hard pressed to think of a female who made a lot of money and lost it, in part, cause she was helping out her friends too much. On the flip side, we're adding Antoine to yet a long list of folks.

First thing rappers talk about when they "make it"? Putting their crew on. Even when some folks in their crew can't rap. Or do much else. I'm all about helpin your bro out, but...

Loyalty's a great trait. Wish more people had it. Dudes take it to the far end sometimes, though -- as we've discussed here.

ASmith said...

You are absolutely right. In fact, I had typed such a response to FBM below, but thought better of it.

MochaMuffin said...

Chele - I applaud you for trying to do something this week. And in some (rare) cases you succeeded in opening up a dialogue but in other ways, peeps just fell right back into Battle of the Sexes party lines. I could argue ALL day that men roll hareder with their crew then females do with their girls but no doubt some guy would arge just as hard for hte other side. What this has done, is make me eager for Question for the Ladies Week. And then let's compare notes.

theuppitynegro said...

Well, that suggests that it's MY responsibility to correct someone else's issues. Just as you wouldn't want your S.O. trying to change who you are, why should we expect another to do the same for a third party.

Granted we live in a society that frowns upon what's considered illegal behavior and actions that don't "contribute" to society, but that being said, it more sounds like the S.O. just can't deal, just because. For men, we always have to deal with the best friend or sister that just can't stand us just because and we're always asked to deal. Hey, the women can put up with our foolishness if we have to deal with the friends/sisters that don't like us.

Jasmin said...

Random note: I went to middle school with his younger sister, and I know some people (kind of related) who live next door to him.

ASmith said...

If that's your reading of what I said, I didn't express myself clearly enough.

I don't think any of us expect you to change your friend.

My BFF is an asshole. He'll tell you that and I'll tell you even louder. He doesn't enjoy being around many of my friends for too long. It's really not them -- it's him. Truly (that part, he wouldn't admit to, but it's true). The kicker is that ALL of those people would consider both of us their friends. So what I'm really saying is, he doesn't like to spend a lot of time around many of his friends from undergrad. In the non existent chance that we somehow end up at an alumni function/weekend like, oh, say Homecoming, I know that if I want to see him, I better plan to be away from all those other people.

I'm not asking him to change and start liking these people and I don't ask them to stop doing the gazillion things they do that irritate him and make him not want to be around them.

My relationship with him matters, my relationship with them matters. I compromise. So does he, actually. He knows that sometimes he has to bite that bullet and tolerate them for me, but I don't ask him to do that too often and he doesn't ask me to do my "magic scheduling" too often either (that usually means he just doesn't come to Homecoming or participate when we all get together for large group trips that would force him to be around them a lot).

sunt97 said...

I have had the "bromance" issue when I was dating a guy. I never wanted to come in between his friendship with his friends but I was sick and tired of hearing about them and watching him try to save them. People always want to take their boys along for the ride and that to an extent is fine, but when it came to things in our relationship I hated their involvement. I know women run to their girlfriends and tell them everything, but "man love" was too much for me. I was happy he had a friend that was like his brother but it drove me away.


Tiffany
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