Thursday, July 29, 2010

RWNTD*: Get Real Already: Don't Date what you can't deal with

My blog cousin Slim Jackson wrote a post over at Three Ways To Take It on women who do not appreciate the random small gestures that men make. He felt that some women expected men to jump through hoops for their love. And he further goes on to say that it's really hard for men to even remember to make that effort because they are so caught up in their day to day lives. 
The effort isn’t because we’re reluctant. It’s because sometimes we get caught up in the flow of life and forget. Other times we don’t do things simply because we know that within hours, the gesture will be forgotten because it’s expected or because shorty got used to the small acts. I know women that have dated really nice guys who did stuff for them all the time, but let that dude mess up once. There’s a chance she’d hold whatever he did over his head for 6 months to a year despite everything else. I can speak to this because I’ve been that guy multiple times before.
First of all, that's a trifling chick who can't break off a "thank you baby" on the regular. Second of all, I absolutely do not cosign that it's so very cumbersome for men to remember to do nice things. Quite truthfully if a man slaps a post-it note on the mirror once a week saying "Love ya Babe!" - a woman is over the moon. How hard is that? Moving on.

Maybe it's just me but I'm that girl who appreciates the small everyday things as opposed to the grand gestures. I actually teared up one time when an S.O. brought me some yogurt and a bottled water. The thing is, for whatever reason, I don't expect a whole lot. Love me, respect and appreciate me, talk to me, listen to me like you give a damn, be an emotional support. I'll do the same. Everything else is frosting on the relationship cake.

Without getting into a whole "who are these women and why are you dating them" swirl, let me address a broader issue... it's time to get real about relationship expectations.

I have to be with a considerate talker so I date men who communicate. I made a conscious decision that it's more important for the man I date to be considerate, a listener, and a gentleman rather than fine, successful and fly. I just happen to be lucky enough to be dating someone who is all of that but this is like my 212th time at bat. (translation - I've done my time knocking it out of the park in the minors, it was time I reaped the rewards of the big show and made the All-Star Team. If you don't know baseball lingo, that went right past you)

My point is if you want a woman to appreciate you... date an appreciative woman. What's more important - that you have the shiniest dime or a dame who loves your dirty drawers? Who's to say you won't find both?

Women keep talking about how they want to get married and then they date completely unmarriageable men. Men that are already married, determined to stay single or just not suitable. How's that gonna work?

Don't date what you can't deal with. It's just that simple. Gents, if you don't want a gold-digger, stop trying to attract women with your income. Ladies, if you don't want to be treated like the recreational chick, stop passing it out like an all-you-eat buffet. Both guys and girls, if you're not a patient person - why are you with someone who is high-maintenance and needs hand-holding?

I'll wait while you think on that. 

Let's talk for about your "must-have" lists. I have seen both men and women who are completely unreasonable in what they want. Brains, beauty, bank - okay those I expect to see but when you start tacking on specific physical characteristics and the tiniest personality traits... you're doing too much. You really have a six-page list of characteristics Mr. or Mrs. Right must have? C'mon now people... it's not like custom ordering a car, shiny chrome and GPS are nice to have but do you need them? (I'm not even to get into people who expect a platinum platter mate when they are bringing paper plates to the table. Good luck with that.)

Ladies and Gents - understand this. It's rare that your significant other is going to undergo huge transformations in personality. At most, they might change some habits or traits. Usually, you get who you get. If dude is a playa with his d!ck in the streets when you meet him, just assume that's who he's going to be. If a girl is gorgeous but selfish as all hell when you meet her, just assume that's her and know that the gorgeous may not last. 

All of this to say, get your priorities right and chose wisely. Be realistic about what you want versus what you need. And then once you've got that person... know who you've got and don't expect them to be anyone other than who they are. Pick someone you want to be friends with first. 

I'm getting kinda preachy so let me wrap it up. What do you think about small gestures men make? Are people unrealistic with their dating expectations? Have you seen these "must-have" lists, do you have one? How long is it? Ever dated someone you wanted to "change"? How did that work out for ya? Thoughts, comments, insights?

Wrapping up the Week: Doing too Much

*RWNTD: Relationship What Not to Do Week

67 comments:

Shondriette D Kelley said...

"Women keep talking about how they want to get married and then they date completely unmarriageable men." I'm ashamed to admit it but this sums up my past dating history! However, I did a personal intervention about a year ago so that madness has come to an end.

I know that I want to be married and have kids. If a man isn't interested in that it doesn't make him a bad guy, it just makes him bad for me. A man can be fine, rich, chivalrous and everything else I could imagine but if we aren't on the same page I'll be politely excusing myself on to the next one. Waiting on the right one can be frustrating but not as frustrating as wasting time with the wrong ones.

Bravo on another excellent post and enjoy your vacation :)

Gods_Man said...

"Ladies and Gents - understand this. It's rare that your significant other is going to undergo huge transformations in personality. At most, they might change some habits are traits."

THIS right here. We tell couples in counseling that what ever you tolerate before marriage you cannot change after marriage. Without honest conversation about what you expect your S.O. is under no obligation to meet it.

On a related note, when my now wife and I were dating, we had a discussion about how when ladies gets used to certain treatment it becomes expected and it stops being special. She agreed but said that both men and women are guilty of it. The longer your relationships get the harder you have to work at not taking each other for granted.

Ms_Smart said...

People repeat when they hear others say. In other words, all the fella want a dime, so Joe says he wants one too. But Joe never bothers to personalize his list bast on his individual needs. The reason he doesn't could be because he's lazy. Or maybe he's incapable of honest self-reflection.

rozb said...

In order for the little gestures to continue you must show that they mean something. A Thank You and a kiss sometimes followed up with a great meal or ... can go a long way in keeping it going. It works for me.

AdubS said...

I am a pretty easy going chick. I don't need much, so the little things are the ones that mean the most to me. The little things show me that he's thinking of me, RIGHT NOW. In the moment. A thought of me ran across his mind, and he responded to it by letting me know in some tiny way. Little things, tiny gestures, make me weepy. Once I forgot to get a straw for my drink, so my honey gave me his and drank from his cup. I teared up y'all! I didn't ASK for his straw. I simply made a statement and he responded in an effort to make me happier in the moment.

Big gestures are big for a reason...they are meant to be seen (bragging rights) and over-arching (i.e., Cool! Now I don't need to do anything for her for at LEAST 6 months!) That's why I don't like them. When a man does those, he's not really thinking about his woman, he's thinking about HIMSELF, and how much (or more precisely, how little) effort he needs or wants to put into the relationship. #boohim

vonnie said...

so much cosign on what you see is what you get! I am always curious with people who get with obvious playas, dudes who are clearly married or something, and then are shocked, SHOCKED I tell you that he didn't end up married to them with a white picket fence and perfect little life. wtf? I'm NOT going to the red lobster and expecting Joe's Seafood quality food, so don't date that guy if you want THIS guy's qualities. never works.

I have preferences and desires for the future boo of my dreams, but it's not some drawn out list. I know personality traits that will mesh with mine, so thats a must. as for looks, I'm flexible because I like all types of men so that's luckily open, not stuck on "MUST be this height, this race, this shade, this color to his hair, this kind of hair, this color eyes" be looking all day waiting on someone you practically have to BUILD from scratch! lol

http://socialitedreams.wordpress.com/

Mrs Smiley Face said...

The small things can make or break a relationship because for me it shows that you're really paying attention to who I am.
You wash the coffee pot out and I'm over the moon because that's one less thing I have to do in the morning and you know I looooovvveesss me some coffee in the morning.

You get me a new tea kettle because you've noticed, without me having to tell you, that the handle is cracked and my heart goes aaawwwww.

I come home and MY household to-do list (i.e wash dishes when I get home, wash whites, blah blah blah) is done because you saw it on the fridge and decided to let me relax with a movie.

I'm a sucker for small things, it doesn't take that much for me to be happy and to show appreciation to you for being so thoughtful.

Sasha Stiletto said...

The boy-toy brought me Dunkin Donuts coffee and a bear claw before leaving this morning - I was appreciative.

FreeBlackMan said...

Boy Slim was right, women don't appreciate what a man does for them, taking brothers for granted and resting on cute. And they expect way too much. At some point they need to be happy we show the hell up at all.

Tiffanyinhouston said...

Good word today Chele!

The one thing I am trying to train myself out of as I reach T-60 days to marriage what Slim specifically speaks to in his quote. I have found myself guilty of beating up my fiance for one small (in the grand scheme of things) misstep, when he does so many fabulous things for me and strives very hard to make me happy. And the truth is, true love is not a recorder of wrongs. The Bible lies out explicitly what love is, and it isn't about tit for tat at all.

"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always preserves."
-- 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Javalicious said...

Let the church say Amen. All these folks expecting SuperMan and Wonder Woman to be their boo. It don't work that way. What comedian said just find someone as effed up as you that you can stand and roll with it.

OneChele said...

You betta preach, girl!

Blackest Berry said...

Bitter much? Someone took you all the way there, huh?
No sir. No one (male or female) wants to celebrate someone who just "shows the hell up"- a dog will come when it's called. This is supposed to be a relationship.

Rob said...

Imma need you to stop speaking so much truth this week. My Must Have list has 64 requirements on it. You saying I need to scale back? Really the top ten are needs,the rest are strong wants.

BB Waite said...

Since we are preaching this morning:
2 Cor 6: 14 Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers [do not make mismated alliances with them or come under a different yoke with them, inconsistent with your faith]. For what partnership have right living and right standing with God with iniquity and lawlessness? Or how can light have fellowship with darkness?

It's about more than just faith people. Unequal yokes are painful, slow both parties down and cause unnecessary strain to an already hard situation.

ASmith said...

The best piece of advice I ever got about dating was "date to marry."

Meaning, don't date people you can't see yourself marrying... which meant I had to think a minute about what I wanted in a long-term, forever mate. I think that it's NOT thinking that way that has us believing we can get a person and change them.

So a man can attract a woman with his money but then convince her to be a loyal and committed housewife who doesn't care about money.
Or a woman can attract a man with her looks, but then convince him to be a loyal and committed provider who doesn't care if she gains 20lbs and stops wearing makeup.

At some point we will all learn that you really won't get everything. But if you try and pay attention, you'll get what's most important to you and you'll find that's plenty.

ASmith said...

"I know that I want to be married and have kids. If a man isn't interested in that it doesn't make him a bad guy, it just makes him bad for me."

Such a good point. Many folks let their friends talk them into staying with somebody because they're a good person. Yes! They are! Just not for me... so importance...

Liselle said...

"Be realistic about what you want versus what you need."
Game. Set. Match.

James said...

you have been on straight fiyah these past few weeks..but then again, that's you EVERY week! right on point again Chele!!!

Sweet N Tart said...

Let me get my tambourine out and pass the offering plate!

Myas-mom said...

"Waiting on the right one can be frustrating but not as frustrating as wasting time with the wrong ones."

WELL PUT!!!

Slim Jackson said...

I actually have that verse written down and have had to share it with a significant other before. There's also a verse about how love doesn't expect anything in return. I'ma have to find it.

Slim Jackson said...

See...I'm willing to bet that you inspire and motivate him to do these things just by being appreciative and reciprocating or initiating with the "Let me wait and see what he does" mentality. Then again, you are married now so you've done something right. :)

Myas-mom said...

Wrong women! Want to be appreciated, date an appreciative woman. (I believe Chele said that in her post). You can usually tell an appreciative woman after the first couple of "little things" you do for her. Don't get a sincere "thank you" or "Aww, how sweet", then move on to the next one. It don't take months to know if a woman is appreciative. First date will be a dead give-a-way!

Myas-mom said...

Ok, for real the offering plate can be passed now! Amen amen amen Tiffany!!! I think I'll stay for the afternoon service! LOL!!!

Mocha Dude Speaks said...

It's in 1 Cor 13: 1 - 13, my favorite passages.

Myas-mom said...

"Don't date what you can't deal with", and "...expecting a platinum platter mate...bringing paper plates to the table." are excellent statements! I always say, "What are you bringing to the table?". I am a firm believer that saying "I do" does not change a person. Usually bad habits while dating become worse after marriage. And even still, in the past I was willing to settle. I thank God to this day that I am unmarried because if He had given me what I asked for, I would be divorced twice by now.

Bible study topic last night, "Wait on the Promise". An unfulfilled promise by God is a promise not yet fulfilled, not a promise that has been broken. You must wait!

This was a great post Chele! Definitely some good reminders in there!

GrownAzzMan said...

This should be renamed 'Straight No Chaser Week'. OneChele is truthin again. I like what you said about at-bats. I had a few strikeouts myself but it made the home run that much sweeter. This point gets lost sometimes. You have to date and keep dating until you meet the right one. So many settle for what they don't want and then complain about what they get.

Paul on Ice said...

You almost make it sound like all gorgeous women are selfish as hell and all men are playas. Shouldn't put everybody in boxes.

OneChele said...

Where did I say that exactly?

Shondriette D Kelley said...

What's in your top 10? (I'm so nosy!)

CreoleInDC said...

What do you think about small gestures men make?

My husband is thoughtful every.single.day. For birthdays, anniversaries and a couple of holidays...he makes grand gestures. If I had to choose between him being thoughtful daily as opposed to having the grand gestures on special occasions...I'd choose thoughtful daily and I show him and tell him on the regular how very much I appreciate all of the little things which add up to being a very big part of what makes our marriage work so well.

Are people unrealistic with their dating expectations?

Yes. Why? Because they don't have enough examples of positive dating experiences around them to use as examples. It's unfortunate that the basics have given way to reality show worthy shenanigans.

Have you seen these "must-have" lists, do you have one?

I had a list. Damn sure did. There are things I can't and won't deal with and never felt I had to so I wasn't ever going to. It worked for me so I'm good.

How long is it?

It wasn't that long but it was pretty detailed in the areas that were important enough for me to consider dealbreakers.

Ever dated someone you wanted to "change"?

I changed my husband's style of dress. Dude was straight WHACK in the clothing department until I made him business fly hotness. :)

How did that work out for ya?

He's business fly and loves it. LOL! We're good.

Thoughts, comments, insights?

It simply shouldn't be this hard folks. I find it annoying that folks communicate so well online with people they don't even much know regarding relationships instead of communicating those same sentiments to people they are dating. Dating and mating isn't rocket science. You single...he's single...you like him...he likes you...hell...be a good person, date, get to know each other and move forward or not based on what YOU want and what's good for YOU. Folks make it too damn hard.

Good luck with that.

Grace said...

I must say I generally violently disagree with Slim but he has a nugget or two in here. Chele has a great point as well - if you want a woman to appreciate you... date an appreciative woman. Actually, she has so many dead on points in here, I need to email it out.

OneChele said...

Too kind.

Myas-mom said...

Yeah where?

derek love said...

I first discovered BougieLand during a Relationship Week so for those of you all new to BnB - behold the goodness. It's like Chele takes it to a whole other level for Relationship Week and everyday is pow, bang, how ya like me now?
The thing that resonates for me today is "people who expect a platinum platter mate when they are bringing paper plates to the table." And it's not just financial equality. People should be matched all the way around.

Eye Candy said...

My last S.O. did lots of nice things for me but failed in almost every other way. So I grew to suspect the motive behind the niceness. Carry that forward to next relationship and the baggage springs open.
Just another layer of perspective.

Jasmine Girl said...

I know I can be quick to anger but I'm also super-appreciative. As Chele said, it was really about finding someone who "gets me" and making it work. Both accepting each other flaws and all.

David Chase said...

Kudos to you Ms. Chele for not bashing brothers at every opportunity. It's true we can get very wrapped up in our worlds and we're not generally hardwired to notice/pick up on/act on little things. But a woman being patient and showing appreciation when we do get it right is worth more than five dimes and a nickel.
My must have list: Look good to me. Love only me. Don't Lie to Me. The rest as you say is frosting on the relationship cake.
Oh, and OVATION for the baseball analogy. I think I'm still riding the bench in the minors, need to get on that come up. ;-0

David Chase said...

Respectfully frat - read a whole post, not just a sentence.

David Chase said...

Ya'll almost make me want to go back to church.

MidwestDominicana said...

I hope you dropped the mic after this one! Real talk!
I agree whole-heartedly that being appreciative and appreciating the one you are with does miraculous wonders for a relationship. It's the Golden Rule...do unto others as you would have them do unto you! We all like to know that our efforts and energies are noticed and respected. What Chele said is right, date an appreciative man/woman if that's what you are looking to get back.
Being appreciated is a driver for a good number of people. My hubby makes breakfast, lunch and dinner for me nearly every day and I appreciate the heck outta him....guess what? My meals get better and better. If you take pride in what your SO does for you, they will take pride in doing those things.
I believe that what you give is what you get.

Karen Caffee said...

More great sauce to simmer on the stove today! My mother shared the same advice that has already been mentioned here - you don't try to change someone AFTER that didn't have the characteristics and standards that you were looking for BEFORE you started down the road with them. Platinum plate expectation versus paper plate (probably greasy at that) appreciation is definitely not sitting on the table!

AppleBerryMIA said...

I too am a fan of the little things, those stick with me. Dating expectations have gotten completely out of hand, no one needs to be all of that to one person. I have a must have list, it's short but crucial to me. I learned a long time ago not to try and change things I have no control other. I want to marry a man not raise one (yet).

Realest N**** said...

I hate to be the voice of dissent, well no I don't. Your readers just blindly go along with whatever you have to say, huh. I mean no one challenges you that this might all be crap. Who cares if my requirements list is long and yes, I'll wait until I have a dime. All these desperate single chicks on here have no idea what they're doing. I bet most of them are of the paper plate variety? And the men are no better. Jesus, people even cosign your co-sign. That's crazy.
Who is this Slim dude and why does he suppose to know what he's talking about either? Blogs like his and yours make me tired. Part of what is wrong today listening to halfazz truth.

Annette Evans said...

This is probably not the site for you.....bitter, much?

OneChele said...

Sweet Mother of... Le Deepest Sigh.
1. If you hate the sites, why ya readin'? Believe me neither Slim nor I will miss you when you leave.
2. You can take all the shots at me you want but when you insult the BougieLand Faithful, thems fightin' words sir. Perhaps you don't recognize quality when you see it?
3. With that attitude, good luck pulling a dime
4. This site is what's wrong with the world? Hyperbole much? I'll wait while you look it up.
*waiting*
*still waiting*
*and still waiting*
5. Okay then. I'm also confused by why you felt compared to share at all.

But thanks for visiting the Black 'n Bougie blog. You take care now.

Annette Evans said...

I think the main problem with the dating scene today is that people expect the person they are dating to be a perfectly formed version of what they were searching for. Although you must be on guard, you should not be obsessed with what your "ideal man/woman should be. Nobody is a perfect anything, and work will be required in any relationship you take on. That is why it is important that you look for what you need as opposed to what you may want, because what you want is usually the worst thing in the world for you. Be realistic in your expectations. "If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, and quacks like a duck" eventually it will show its' duck colors......

JaymeC said...

Dang Chele, I see you had to gun one down today. *snickers* Someone's always gotta learn the hard way.
Well, I was going to co-sign and even high 5 Slim for speaking his truth but that would make me one your blind followers according to RN.
P.S. Did we become a cult when I wasn't looking? Call me when it's time for Kool-Aid. Ha!

Slim Jackson said...

So let me get this straight...

Because you are using the name Realest N***, which is quite ignorant, you're now the voice of reason? Or maybe it's this drive-by comment? If you don't like these blogs, then don't read them. It's people like you that complain but don't contribute anything to the discussion or the community. If these blogs make you tired, go to sleep and wake up only to realize you still haven't contributed anything of value.

Realer than Real,

Big Meech aka Slim aka I just like that song.

P.S. I'm the same guy who wrote a post saying don't take a blogger's words as gospel. lol

Mr. Skyywalker said...

Naw son... we don't roll like up in here. NOT UP IN HERE (h/t to the Hangover).
You go grimy elsewhere.
Be Gone.

Pure Choco said...

You know someone got out of pocket because you asked us to play nice - BWAHAHA!
Anywho - I think we need to print out your relationship posts do comparison to Slim's on the same topics and put out a handbook.

MidwestDominicana said...

One reason that the readers of this blog can and do co-sign the co-sign is because we are intelligent and alert enough to know when something is good and right and truthful. I have to agree with Slim that if you don't have anything to back up your argument, why waste the time it took to type it? Why even bother responding if you whole heartedly disagree and you are so bitter as to hate on the post and the people who enjoy it? This blog is a gathering of people with like values and similar experiences and thoughts.
I do not believe that anyone here, including the owner, has professed to be all right all the time. It has been repeated frequently that none of us are perfect, but instead are striving for perfection.
As for your insult to the contributors, we understand that yours is a cry for help. The desperation comes solely from you. We understand that you want attention and congrats, you've gotten some, but none of us are here to hate. Too bad that you missed out on really enjoying one of the most fun and entertaining blogs on the web.
I hope that you don't miss out on a dollar trying to get a dime. You need a hug and a nap. Good luck with that, brah.

OneChele said...

My girl said a hug and a nap... I'm done. LOL!

Slim Jackson said...

Wants vs. Needs is a huge issue. Factor in the overall lack of patience and general selfishness of individuals and we can see why things are so complicated. A lot of folks sabotage their relationship lives by not having their priorities right.

Booboonotthefool said...

wrote a post with the same take home message last week. Very well said.

thinklikeRiley said...

I didn't even get a change to get wiggy, folks went left and right today.
Folks need to get real about those lists though.

Karen Caffee said...

This is not the I've-Got-Something-To-Prove-By-Sticking-My-Foot-In-My-Mouth blog, so since I may be the oldest one here in Bougie Land today *putting on Grandma's voice* Go right back out that door you came in with that stuff. Seriously, you came, you read, you disagree, now it's time for you to join us in the blogosphere and buy your domain name and create your own blog on your own website so that you can speak your real to people who want to hear what you have to say. But if no one does, it's all good because you still can have your say - over there where you are.

Kandia said...

I'm all for the lists because you have to know what you want and what you're willing to hold out for. However I do agree sometimes people are gonna be so specific that noone will fit the bill but Jesus.

Myas-mom said...

Cult? Kool-Aid? LMFAO!!!

Myas-mom said...

Damn what the hell did I miss?!! Who salted this Ninja's heart? WOW!!! Co-sign the co-sign? I want to laugh, but actually it's quite sad. But I hope after that post he feels better. Poor baby! Meanie! I'm going to pray for him........Amen!

Dr. Peppa said...

This is real right here. Well written.

Hidi said...

What do you think about small gestures men make? They are great because it gets you off guard in a good way.

Are people unrealistic with their dating expectations? Yes, sometimes they take it too far.

Have you seen these "must-have" lists, do you have one? No, I have not seen one but I've heard too many "must-have" lists. I do not have a list but my future significant other has to match my core values, which are very important to me; it's really short. (Hey what can I say, I am a simple kinda girl..:) )

Ever dated someone you wanted to "change"? No, I don't believe in trying to change people. People are who they are. Frankly, I do not want to be bother with trying to make over a person's characteristics. I'm impatient and I would not like someone to try to change me; it's not going to happen. I am who I am. :)

maureen palmer said...

This morning I heard a local radio D.J here in DC said he can't date fat/big women. I could not believe what I heard b/c he is sporting a big stomach just not fit. Be the change you want to see.

YardieChicie said...

That one always gets me. The fixer-uppers of either gender always want the dime pieces. xD

Shahlex said...

I love the small gestures and I do make sure to acknowledge them - for example - one day I was particularly stressed @ work so he came by my spot that evening - not to stay, because he was working, but to drop off a box of chocolates to perk me up. Little things like that go a long way in my book.

Strummy36 said...

"Pick someone you want to be friends with first." Pearls of wisdom!

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