Should I stay or should I go?

Disclaimer: I am not a relationship expert by any stretch of the imagination. If anything, I can offer cautionary tales of what NOT to do. However, folks keep asking for my opinion so here goes…

Apparently, we're having Relationship week on BnB. So, in this episode of Ask a Bougie Chick, I'll answer a few letters from my readers who think I know what I'm talking about. I probably don't but what I will do is shoot straight and tell you what I would do. I've abbreviated the names for confidentiality.

Dear OneChele,

My boyfriend says I am too stuck up and bougie so he is leaving. Says he cannot afford my "foolishness". Just because I have standards in the way I live my life, does that make me stuck up and bougie? Granted, going in I realized that he is more street than uptown but I thought those differences could be overcome. I let him move in with me so he could get himself together after being laid off. I suggested that he use some of the time off to take classes, maybe pick up a certificate or two. He said I was pushing him to be something he isn't. From there, everything I did was questioned. He was upset at the brand of groceries I got (complained I spent too much), asked me why I needed to buy things (shoes, clothes) and became for lack of a better term, quarrelsome. I attributed this to him losing his job and all of the money in the house being mine. Even though I haven't made it seem like it, he's really a nice guy. Should I fight for him? Just asking for your opinion since I read your blog and you know your way around the bougie lifestyle.

Thanks! Sincerely, J.I.C.

Dear J.I.C.,

I guess I'll take this point by point. Stuck up and bougie are not necessarily the same thing. You can be one (either) without the other. If you have high standards and can afford to maintain them, I don't see anything wrong with that. Now when you say your man is "street" are we talking "can handle himself in the hood street" or "has a parole officer on speed dial street"? If he is straight outta Compton and you are straight outta Martha's Vineyard; that's more of a bridge than a stepping stone to cross if you catch my meaning. Both can be done but one takes longer.

A quick pause for the cause here: OneChele does not believe in the shacking. Letting a man move in with you is always a tricky situation. I understand you did it for financial reasons but sharing a space with someone is serious business. Things (such as finances, personal habits, what the future holds) suddenly have be taken into account.

Let me see if I understand: you are making all the money and paying all of the bills, but he is concerned with your spending? Does this mean that your money is now community property money? Is that what he means by "foolishness"?

Okay, in tough economic times I understand why you are trying very hard to be a ride-or-die chick for your man. Ask yourself this, if the tables were turned and you had no job, no money and a "quarrelsome" attitude – would he do the same for you? If so, ride it out. Of course the fact that he has decided to leave takes a lot of the decision making out of your hands. So one last question, when you ask if you should fight for him? What would you do differently to get him to stay? And is it worth it?

Not sure I really answered your question or gave you more to think about. Hope I helped and thanks for visiting Black 'n Bougie.

Dear OneChele,

I am losing my boyfriend of two years to a bougie b*tch. No offense. She's not a b*tch because she's bougie but because she's going after a man that she knows is taken. She takes him places (Aruba) and buys him things (Rolex) that I can't afford to. I look better but she has more education and a better job. I don't know how to fight on her level? I mean in five years I can probably match her crib for crib and degree to degree but I'm losing him now. He is not even bothering to hide the evidence of his cheating anymore. Any advice for a sister trying to get there but not to lose everything in the meantime?

From a bougie in training, AP

Dear AP,

No offense taken, b*tch comes in all flavors including bougie. K I have to make a quick joke though and say I'm not sure how bougie she is if she's coming out the pocket like that for a man (aruba and rolex, wtf?). Okay, here's my opinion:

First and foremost let me say, you do NOT want a man that you have to BUY to keep. He saw something in you to begin with when he knew you did not have the car, the crib, the paper. This sounds cliché but you really do want a man to want you for YOU.

Second thing you need to know is that OneChele does not believe in fighting over a man. Your relationship is between you and him. Her station in life has nothing to do with it. A man cannot be stolen away; he goes where he wants to go. Some may disagree but I feel the ultimate decision to stray sits with he who strays not she who he strays with.

If your man is already accepting stuff from her and going places with her, he's already gone. I repeat: if he is supposed to be in a relationship with you yet goes to Aruba with some other chick, he is not your man anymore. Let me go one step further and say sure, it's his prerogative to see something else he likes and go after it but he has to reconcile his relationship with you first. Otherwise we call that having your cake and eating it too. Relationship FAIL.

Personally I think he's disrespecting you in a way that is tough to get past but I never underestimate the depth of women's love, dedication and devotion to their man coupled with their capacity to forgive and forget. So, if you really still want this guy in your life, you're going to have to give him a CHOOSE OR LOSE option point blank. Fact three, I hate ultimatums except when you have no other choice. You can't go on as is not only is it tacky; it's potentially dangerous physically if you don't know how intimate he is with someone who is not you.

I would ask this of you, do not be so anxious to hang on to this guy that you lose your way on your own path. All jokes aside, your focus is taking care of you. Losing him does not mean you are losing "everything." He is a piece of your puzzle, not the whole picture. Hope I helped and thanks for visiting Black 'n Bougie.

So what do you think? Anything you would say to these two young ladies? Anything you think I left out, should not have said? Help the ladies out, sometimes it takes a village ya'll.