Friday, November 18, 2011

Lessons Learned: Some people just like drama


Flashback: It's somewhere in the 1990s and I'm chilling at Lawrence's house. Lawrence, my shiny new ambitious boyfriend. He was a tech sales guy for Xerox. He was 5'10", caramelly, pretty eyes and charming. But he always had some sort of drama swirling. Money issues or drama at work, with his family, someone at church or from prior relationships - something was on simmer at all times.

We'd fight, he'd storm off and then show up later with a grand gesture. He either loved me or hated me, there was very little in-between with this guy. It was a perpetual motion see-saw of a relationship. Our chemistry was off the charts and that's my only excuse.

We also had a trust problem. Or rather at that time - I didn't trust men, he was a man so I didn't trust him. His behavior was a little sketchy. There were times when he was missing/unavailable/didn't answer his phone. He always had a good explanation but he was one of those guys who talked fast and overexplained. You know like someone whose alibi is just a little too perfect? "Twenty people saw me tap-dancing under a big clock with a Slurpee in one hand and a date-stamped receipt in the other... AND it's on YouTube!" Ooookay.

As I'm sitting on his sofa, he's folding clothes. As he's folding, I'm noticing women's clothes mixed in. 'What's that about?" I asked him. He said they were his sister's items. The only reason I halfway let it slide was because I'd met her earlier in the week and she'd mentioned something about borrowing Lawrence's appliances. Still my side-eye was engaged. 

Later the same night (or early the next morning) the doorbell rings. Two a.m. and the doorbell rings? He got up, went to the door, had heated words with a female voice, slammed the door and came back to bed. Before he could climb all the way back in, the doorbell rang again. Okay now, really? I made a move to get up this time and he said, "No, it's okay," and ran back towards the door. I got up and looked out the window. Some chick was in his front lawn with suitcases. Next thing I know, he has picked up the suitcase and is walking her towards the house. The hell you say?

By the time, they get in and are walking down the hallway - I already had clothes on and was looking for my purse and shoes. As I hotfoot towards the door, he's tugging on my arm with explanations. She was an old friend from back in the day. She was in town unexpectedly and in a jam. She just needed a place to stay for a few days. I'm looking at chick, she's looking at me - we both know what's up. Difference between the two of us? She was willing to roll up to a man's house at 2:00am to get what she wanted. I was ready to flee a man's house at 2:00am behind some shiggity. I bounced.

Two weeks later, he invited me out to dinner saying everything was cool. She moved in with her fiance, he wanted all of us to have dinner to clear the air. At this point, my mind has already turned the "this is some bullshiggity right here" corner but I agree to the dinner. Dinner went well up to dessert when this chick starts talking about her seven year old son. Lawrence looks shocked and asks who the father is. She calmly announces that the boy is his. Me, Lawrence and her fiance are all looking at her like, "What?!" WDDDA, ya'll. WDDDA?!

That was it for me. Not that the seven year old appearing from nowhere was his fault, but he was the kind of guy that attracted drama like All Star Weekend attracts clear heels. And he thrived on it. When things were calm, he was itchy as if he knew that drama was beckoning and he couldn't wait to embrace it with both arms open.

Lesson learned: I have enough drama of my own, I really don't need anyone with suitcases full and more on the way. I know life is treacherous terrain. There are valleys and mountaintops. I kinda like life on the plateaus.

What say you, BougieLand? Are there just people in the world who run to drama? Thrive on it? Don't know how to live without it and create some where there was none? What is to be done with those types of folks? Are you a drama magnet? Thoughts, comments, confessions?

39 comments:

Leo the Yardie Chick said...

*reads story* Lord and Jesus....*blesses self*

I'm happy to say that I know no one who loves drama. My grandma hated it, my mum hated it, and I stay far from it. Life's too short for drama. >_<

maureen said...

"There are valleys and mountaintops. I kinda like life on the plateaus."- This  is me all day. As the holidays  approach, I'm dreading the drama that come with it. I  can already see drama with  1 or 2 members of the family. My heart wall are not built for drama, I see it come and I make  hard right turn.

I once dated a guy that put the word D on drama. He expected me to  be toe to toe  with him. No Sir. Not plugged  in like that.

CaliGirlED said...

Drama free is the only life for me! I strive to live happily, in peace is where I want to be!

NatashaHunter said...

The nervousness when things are going too smooth?  I've dated a couple of guys like that, and usually when I met their families I saw where that came from...some folks just aren't content being content, it's like they find it boring or something. No thanks.

blackprofessor said...

This sums up my philosophy perfectly!

EvolvingElle said...

Simply put-I.DONT.DO.DRAMA.  Never have, never will.  And people who are prone to it?  I run from them like they have the plague.  The end.

SingLikeSassy said...

Did that dude marry her after she laid that great big rotten egg in the middle of the dinner table? That's what I want to know.

I dated a guy where there always some critical dramatic something going on. And most of it was because he waited until he was in a corner and his hand was forced before he would handle stuff. It was too much for me. I don't like to wait until my choices are limited to make decisions so I always have a plan. And a plan B. And a back up plan to that. I can't function in chaos and I knew any future with this guy would be a crazy chaotic one. So he was fired. 

BklynBajan said...

I used to live life like Erica Kane and sheepishly exclaimed how things just kept happening to me. Once I took a seat and acknowledged my role in various interactions I chose to emulate Brooke English who's life was exciting without all the extra melodramatics (most of the time). In the end Brooke got her man and Erica was left alone. In all seriousness my post is just to share you can change if you want to but be prepared to let go of a LOT of people. Some former friends are more invested in my old drama (trying to relive/rehash in present day) then I'll ever be.

#stillmissAMC #neverwatchingthechew

ASmith said...

I've always believed that there are people out here who think their life is just not going right unless there is drama.   Those people make me sad, but they also stress me so I cannot be bothered.  I was one of those people for a while, unintentionally.  I do care, I will listen, be a shoulder, alladat, but I found myself in the middle of one too many situations that turned the corner on dramatical blvd, and I had to pump the brakes.  My BFF asked me one time how I always ended up in the middle of drama that wasn't mine.  I said I didn't know and he said "well, you're the common denominator so you have to know something..."

Had to chuck the deuces to the ones who kept up drama.  Didn't mean we couldn't be cool, but it did mean I wasn't listening to it or being party to it at all.  Had to draw some big red boundary lines around my sanity and start putting folks out the circle when they violated the rules.  Amazing how much lighter things generally are in my space. 

Just_A_Thought1218 said...

This story? There.are.NO.words.

I'm not really one for drama.  Having a bunch of non-sense for the sake of having non-sense? Nah son, take it that way ---->

I had to learn to no deal with drama in my life because my mom and step-dad kept the drama turned up to 11, so I thought that drama (and me being the peace-maker) was normal.  Thank goodness I learned better.  Now, the only "drama" I attract on a regular basis is black and brown men saying (intentionally or inadvertently) negative stuff about my afro puff.  Yes, they still make men like that, sadly.

People who thrive on drama, or don't have the good sense to disassociate from people/things constantly bringing drama into their lives, need to be avoided at ALL costs.  Pray for them from a distance if you feel the need to help.  If you see them in the street, say a quick "hey" as you fish ou your cell phone and pretend to take a call so you don't get sucked into the vortex. And if you can't avoid a conversation, place a few well timed "hmm", "really", "uh huh" and keep it moving.

CaliGirlED said...

Ha!

ClayJones said...

I used to say "I don't look for drama, drama finds me" but you know what - if you keep dramatic damn people around you and keep putting yourself in a position where drama is sure to happen? That's you, sitting down in the middle of Drama River and telling it to carry you downstream.

#LessonLearned indeed

La said...

THIS IS ME AND MY MAMA. OMG. SO MUCH SO THAT I HAD TO TYPE THESE 3 SENTENCES IN ALL CAPS. lol

My mama is SO high strung, so dramatic, so on 10 ALL THE TIME that it is EXHAUSTING. And then she's constantly talking about how she needs a vacay or to regroup Eat, Pray, Love style. I had to be the exact opposite of her just to function in the world, lol

La said...

Wait, I, wait, WHAT?!?!
 
Women's clothes in the... and then showing up at 2am with... and then secret sons and just... NO. HELL NO.

I can't with drama. There was a time period in college when there was drama ALL THE TIME. Mostly because of the people I surrounded myself with. I found when I wasn't actively seeking peace in my life, drama always seemed to find me too. Something was always falling apart, exploding, or otherwise on some BS. Now that I have changed my outlook, the things that are drawn to me have changed too. That's not to say that things don't fall apart every day that ends in y. It's just the fallout is much different than it used to be when there were dramatic people stoking the flames.

BklynBajan said...

A "common denominator" conversation is what gave me pause also. I was talking about Halle Berry and my no nonsense brother pointed out that SHE was the common denominator with all her relationship woes (at the time). When I realized he was right about her then it HAD to stand true for myself. Seat taken.

Its hard when those lines drawn means you leave family and formerly close friends on the outside but I honestly don't miss the drama and wouldn't trade this peace for anything.

BklynBajan said...

Sounds like my mom. However I told her they will NOT kill me with their nonsense. They don't want to change, have no intention of changing yet you are CHOOSING to stress over choices that frankly aren't yours to monitor or take ownership over. If they like it I love it from a distance.

Veronica Miller said...

No Country For Friends Who Bring Up Ish From Six Years Ago. :-\

Jubi The Great said...

I'm with you CaliGirlED!

thinklikeRiley said...

That's it right there. #Done

Natasha said...

"but he was the kind of guy that attracted drama like All Star Weekend attracts clear heels."  *DEAD* 


I kept so much drama going in my 20s that now my 30s look like I've been
a nun my entire life.  I have now reached a point in my life that I
cannot with anyone's drama and I do mean anyone's (coworkers, children,
mamanem). 

thinklikeRiley said...

Girlie, your life betta than a Soul Food marathon on HBO. "The Bougie Girlfriends of Dallas" - Pitch it to Hollywood!

Only1DivaC said...

Now see this story makes you want to reach out and touch somebody real quick. I'm with you Chele, I don't do drama at all. I run in the other direction if I even sense it headed in my direction.

rozb said...

I do not like drama. At. All. I would rather put you in a sleeper hold and lay you down on some train tracks than to have you keep trying to draw me into some shiggity.

Not that I'm violent, but I learned to create Whoo-sah moments and then walk away, including ex-SOs.

rozb said...

OH! And children that pop up outta nowhere like meerkats?!?!?! Go away, Ninja!

ShawnSoze said...

I had to stop and evaluate why I kept ending up with women prone to dramatic outbursts and tomfoolery. There's a definite type. High maintenance, spotlight-seeking, self-centered - just real glossy women who probably long to be on a reality show and date a baller.

Not saying I want a salad-eating librarian (no offense to the knitting circle ladies) but somewhere in the middle.

maureen said...

"sitting down in the middle of Drama River and telling it to carry you downstream. " ^This..

Leo the Yardie Chick said...

Only if Chele can maintain strict creative control. Knowing Hollywood, they'd dig into their well-thumbed Tome of Negro Stereotypes to 'spice' up the show.

Leon X said...

I'd like to thank you all for reminding me I should keep living like a hermit.

C Nelson said...

I hate drama. My family creates enough of it that I never ever need a partner who creates it too; left to my own devices -- for instance, any time I'm living more than a state away from my parents -- my life is just this side of boring. I like it that way. I want to go out in the world, do what it takes to keep the lights on, and then come home to my quiet house and my intimate circle and relax. If somebody's pulling up to my house at 2  AM with suitcases, it's a *sibling*, and they'll be going away again as soon as I can gently shove them out, because nary a one of them is comfortable in my house unless they're trying to bring some outside mess into it.

Andrea M said...

The fact that you haven't given up dating and started knifing Negroids in back alleys is... admirable.

michaeldavis said...

I second this 100%.


I usually shun "glossy" women like that. Their personalities and character tend to be a mile wide and an inch deep.  I quelled my inner let's go-out-never-and-say-we-did and dated one.  Man, did I regret that.
s/n: new slang: Glossy

michaeldavis said...

I can usually spot the drama queens early on.  I keep some Air Nikes and a compass on deck  so I can run in the other direction.

Page Bartlett said...

Really, the ish you put up with in your 20s should be dead and gone by your 30s.
#NoMoCountryFoDrama

Ivory Tabb said...

I have come to realize that men like way more drama than woman. They may not admit it but they do. and the gossip and are really really messy as well lmao! Think about it when some stuff usual pops off a man is normal the reason behind it or the center of it.

The Pro Diva said...

There are definitely people who love to have drama in their lives. It's almost like they feel as if their life has no meaning without it. They need it like air. I know plenty of folks who love having some mess going on at all times. I, however, am not one of them! I run from drama like the plague, and I refuse to indulge in it. I think you did the right thing in bouncing!

Jasmin said...

I think I'm too apathetic to make a good shoulder for someone else's drama. After people hear "Hmm, sounds like you should make better choices." enough times from me, they tend to stay away.

Currently, the most dramatic people I know are my boyfriend's soon-to-be-ex roommates, who are a couple. They are drama + New Age + repressed homosexual desires in one package, and there's also something sinister lurking in the boyfriend that gives me pause. Can't wait until the BF moves next week so I can pretend like we never met.

Bougie Girl said...

I like watching drama on television. However, I detest having lots of drama in my everyday life.  Drama doesn't bring authentic love into my life and it ain't makin' me money..so its gots to go. lol.

rikyrah said...

how about those who drama seem to find. I know someone like this. drama seems to seek them out like a missile. I just want to have a regular Seinfeld conversation about ' nothing' sometimes...never can with her.

Carmen Jones said...

Oh yes, I know those types of people (especially men) who seem to have a black cloud following them and I think in some sick way - they thrive off of the drama.  It's almost as if they feel they can't exist unless there is some pyschotic chick blowing up their phone, keying their car or breaking out bedroom windows.  As soon as I catch wind of even the slightest bit of drama, I wish them good luck in life and keep it pushing!

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