Never Can Say Goodbye…

goodbye2 (1)Yes… it’s been weeks since my last post.  And I haven’t forgotten about my loyal readers and followers.  I am working on some game changing things.  You know my favorite saying Go Big or Go Home!  I promise it will be worth the wait!  Meanwhile Date On!  Be open… And love as though you have never been hurt….

The Act of Vulnerability

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I don’t have much to write about. What happens when you have built an audience who wants to hear all about your dating life and dating foolery and you reach a point when you have made a conscious decision not to share that information? We knew the day would come. I couldn’t be a Serial Dater forever folks!

I have to be completely honest.  I don’t have much to write about.  What happens when you have built an audience who wants to hear all about your dating life and dating foolery and you reach a point when you have made a conscious decision not to share that information?  We knew the day would come.  I couldn’t be a Serial Dater forever folks!  There comes a time when even a Serial Dater makes the conscious choice to no longer serial date or perhaps they meet someone with potential and want to hold that feeling close to them and keep it private just between the person and you.  I guess you can say its growth.  I guess you can say after two years of bringing you the full Tea on my dating life and relationship status… or lack thereof, I have finally reached a point where I am tapped out.  And don’t worry, that doesn’t mean I will no longer write.  And it is not a bad thing at all.  In the next few weeks this site will take a turn in a different direction… which is a great thing!  But what I can say is 2015 is taking a turn in a different direction and it feels good.  I am happy.  I recognize happiness is a conscious choice.  I made the decision to choose happiness years ago and it was the best decision I ever made.

The journey to get here was a long one.  If someone told me at the age of 25 I would experience all that I have gone through in the last few years I would have laughed at them.  And not just a “ha-ha” laugh.  But one of those guttural laughs that come from your core, where you are laughing so damn hard you can’t breathe.  If someone told me I would get married, and six months into the marriage discover it was a MAJOR mistake, go through a 1 ½ bitter divorce battle, and uproot my life.  I wouldn’t have believed it.  If someone would have told me in order to get to where I am today I would be shaken to the core, my life would be uprooted, and everything I  thought I wanted was indeed not even close to want I needed I would have literally passed out.

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And I went through the storm. And I survived it. And let me be very clear. It wasn’t fun; it wasn’t enlightening at the time. It fucking SUCKED! And I was not truly happy.

 

But now, years later I recognize that was all part of the journey I had to take to discover me.  To discover who I really was.  When I was in the midst of the storm it was painful, it was scary, and it was hurtful.  It did not feel safe.  I had no idea that at the end I would experience the rainbow after the storm.  But you see, in order for a rainbow to appear, you have to go through a storm.  An unexpected sun will shine and the rainbow will be created.  But that is impossible without the storm beforehand.

And I went through the storm.  And I survived it.  And let me be very clear.  It wasn’t fun; it wasn’t enlightening at the time.  It fucking SUCKED!  And I was not truly happy.  To the outside world I appeared to be happy.  I would get accolades about how “How well I was handling the divorce… How strong I am… How you have managed to get through this shit with dignity and grace.”  But when I got home and it was just me all by myself.  I couldn’t go five minutes without crying.  I would find myself balled up in a corner on the floor crying uncontrollably.   My only saving grace was I had to go to work and during those hours I had to keep it together and put on a great façade to the public.  But as soon as I would close the door to my car, the tears would fall uncontrollably.

I’m not exactly sure where I am going with this.  I guess I have spent the last 2 years writing this blog talking so much about my strength.  But for some reason, I feel the need to be completely transparent and let someone out there know my strength didn’t come easy and it didn’t happen overnight.  Perhaps there is someone out there who is in the midst of the storm and needs to read about how what it REALLY means to get through it.  And pretending that “I am every woman…” isn’t what that person needs to hear right now.  Perhaps it’s time to be transparent and be vulnerable and let someone know that the journey isn’t easy.  But you WILL get to your destination called happiness.

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When I was in the midst of the storm it was painful, it was scary, and it was hurtful. It did not feel safe. I had no idea that at the end I would experience the rainbow after the storm. But you see, in order for a rainbow to appear, you have to go through a storm.

 

And once you get to that destination, there comes a point where you believe you are truly okay.  You have made it.  You even have you “PR” spin on what to tell people about your failed marriage or relationship.  Your “3 minute elevator” chat… The “long story short” version.  And let me tell you.  I perfected all of those things.  So much that I recently realized I spent so much time healing and so much time protecting my heart from getting broken again, that it had been a long time since I allowed myself to be vulnerable.  And no, it had nothing to do with not being over the ex.  That ship sailed years ago and I was able to bring myself the closure I needed to end the book.  I wish him nothing but the best and I reached the feeling of indifference years ago.  And if you are a loyal reader to this blog you know my biggest goal in life is to never take a wrong turn to Bitterville or a detour to Cynicism.  In all of my effort to stay the right course on my journey, I forgot one important thing as you open yourself up to love again… Vulnerability.  Allowing yourself to open your heart and let love in is something that can pretty fucking scary after being hurt or years of disappointment.  And it doesn’t mean you are not open to the possibility, but you also have to be open to the gamble of allowing your heart to be open to receive love.  I have no idea where Vulnerability got a bad rap.  Or why some women think that being “strong” means not being Vulnerable.  Especially a lot of us sistahs.  But it is the total opposite.  Interestingly enough for a lot of us it might be a subconscious defense mechanism.  However, I believe the very last piece of my healing journey, the last hill I had to climb was to finally allow myself to be vulnerable and not wear the mask of strength to hide the fear of pain.

Monique K.Bradley

I can be found on: Facebook | Twitter | Google+        
 

 

I’ve Fallen…

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With the holiday season comes a lot of parties, mixers, and over all hanging out to close out the year. And you know how I have a severe case of FOMO (fear of missing out), so the holidays are very dangerous for someone with my condition.

Happy New Year! I made it through the holidays unscathed and feeling really good.   I know it’s been a while since I have posted.  But I’m baaaaaaacccckkkk!!!!  I must admit, I have missed you guys!  And a part of me feels like I have left you hanging for far too long.  But hey, a sista needed a break and some time to regroup and refresh.  And as I have always said, I am not going to write a bunch of bullshit just to fill time.  I want to make sure I am bringing you all things worthy of reading.

With the holiday season comes a lot of parties, mixers, and over all hanging out to close out the year.  And you know how I have a severe case of FOMO (fear of missing out), so the holidays are very dangerous for someone with my condition.  In my own defense there were a few events/parties I missed out on.  Okay, maybe just one… but I’m really trying to get better with that in the New Year.

Prior to making that semi-resolution I found myself double and sometimes tripled booked some evenings during the holiday.  It’s LA and unlike most areas of the country where you are fighting the snow and freezing cold temperature.  Here in LA we are still rocking open toed booties and we complain when the temperature hits 50 degrees.  So it makes it easy for hanging out during the holidays.

One Saturday in particular, I was exhausted but had already committed to going to a two different holiday parties.  And one thing about me, when I give you my word, my word is Bon.  One Holiday party was at a friend of mine and his wife’s house.  It was in the hills and very grown and sexy.  It was my close circle of friends.  There was laughter, great food, great ambiance, and plenty of eggnog that I couldn’t drink because I knew I had to make it to another party later that evening.  Just as I was finally settling in, it was time for me to leave.  Although I was really enjoying myself I still decided to head out to the other party which was a birthday party for a friend of a friend.  I didn’t know any of the people that were going to be there outside of my mentor and her friend that I had just met when we went to a Pilates class together.  Her friend mentioned she was having a birthday/holiday party.  She also said that she never has enough women there because her husband always invites more of his friends.  Naturally my ears perked up.  A party with more men than women?  That is unheard of; I was thinking perhaps God was sending me an early Christmas gift.  With that motivation I left the party I was already at having a great time to high tail my ass to Pasadena.  After all, it is good to step outside of your comfort zone.  Although deep down inside, I really wanted to stay where I was with my close group of friends but I had to practice what I preach.  Lots of times you get stuck in your comfort zone and do not venture out to see what else is out there.

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A party with more men than women? That is unheard of; I was thinking perhaps God was sending me an early Christmas gift.

After a thirty minute drive I found myself walking into a full on house party, complete with a DJ and a full crowd of people on the dance floor in the living room.  There is nothing more awkward than walking into a party late and where you know absolutely no one there.  But I was feeling real good.  My hair was on point, I had on a killer little black dress, and I had finally found the perfect shade of red lip gloss for the holiday season.  You couldn’t tell me I wasn’t the shit at the moment.  You know those times when you just feel really good about yourself.  I’m not being arrogant but I was just having one of those moments.  Even if no one else saw it, I felt it.

I went into the kitchen to drop off my bottle of wine and was scanning the room for my mentor or her friend throwing the party.  The house was quite big.  Then I finally spotted the birthday girl.  I was so relieved to see her.  She walked towards me, and I lifted my hand up to wave at her.  Just as I opened my lips to say “Hey girl” was when I felt gravity leave from below me.  I didn’t realize she had a sunken in living room and there was a step.  It happened in slow motion, my feet literally slipped from below me and my black ass fell!!!  It wasn’t a trip.  It was a full on “bust yo’ ass” fall to the ground.  And I am 5’8 and my brand new heeled booties had me standing at a good 6’1.  And it wasn’t a graceful fall.  As I was falling I found myself reaching to grab the birthday girl and almost brought her down with me!  It was one of the moments when I swear the music screeched to a halt and there was silence.  Once I finally hit the carpet with a loud crash.  I looked up and saw the birthday girl shake her head in disbelief at me, and a few other members of the party looking over like, “Is he okay?  Who is that?  Damn!”  I didn’t know what to do.  But like I always say, it’s not about how you fall it’s about how you get back up.  So I hopped up and tried to play it off, “I’m here!”  At that moment I felt a tap on my shoulder and there was my mentor with her husband (whom I had never met before… what a great first impression.. Oh God!).  They were on the dance floor and witnessed the whole thing!  I was mortified.  I am a klutz.  I always have been inclined to trip over my own size 11 feet.  But it had been a while since this had happened.

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It happened in slow motion, my feet literally slipped from below me and my black ass fell!!! It wasn’t a trip. It was a full on “bust yo’ ass” fall to the ground.

My mentor:  Are you okay?

Me:  Well, I’m here!  (I was still trying to play it off and laugh it off).

My mentor:  this is my husband.

Mentor’s husband:  Nice to meet you.  I’ve heard a lot of great things about you.

(I couldn’t’ tell if he was trying to clown me or not)

Me:  Thanks!  Nice to meet you too.  If you two will excuse me, I need to find the ladies room. 

My mentor pointed me in the direction of the ladies room.  And I slowly walked up the step I hadn’t even noticed before.  I tried to ignore the pain in my knee from the fall.  The last thing I needed was to not only be the dumb ass who busted my ass in the middle of the dance floor. But to add to the resume I had to limp out would have really sent me over the edge.  I went to the ladies room and gather myself together.  How in the hell could I play this off?  It’s one thing if this happened with my close friends.  We could all have a good laugh.  Suddenly the confidence I felt when I walked into the party was a mere fourth of what it was.  I looked at myself in the mirror and started laughing.  What else could I do but laugh?  I also made the executive decision to hightail my ass out of the party.  After all, I had no idea how I was going to be able to play that off.  And I certainly didn’t want to have to explain myself all night and try to play off the fact that I had fallen and busted my ass in the middle of the party.  I walked out of the bathroom and snuck out of the house.  I made sure to look down the whole time to ensure there weren’t any hidden steps lurking around the corner.

I sent a text to my mentor:

Girl I snuck out.  I can’t believe I fell.  Let’s connect in the new year! 

She responded:

I’m so sorry that happened to you.  But I wish you would have stayed. 

I got in my car and went right back to the party with my close friends.  I was welcomed back with open arms and laughter when I told them what happened.  I sat down relaxed and had the glass of egg nog I wanted to have in the beginning of the evening.

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When you are single it is easy to find yourself constantly searching for that someone or something that you can miss out on what is right in front of you waiting for you to just take the time to stop and notice it. And it took me falling to realize, I need to sit my ass down somewhere and just breathe and take a damn break. And that’s exactly what I did during the rest of the holiday.

When I got home that night I realized that my FOMO (fear of missing out) condition had gotten out of control.  Why didn’t I just stay put where I was and enjoy the evening instead of leaving to go to the other party in the first place?!  It took me falling and busting my ass to realize that while you should be open, explore new things, and step out of your comfort zone, there also comes a point when you need to just breathe and take life in.  When you are single it is easy to find yourself constantly searching for that someone or something that you can miss out on what is right in front of you, waiting for you to just take the time to stop and notice it.  Between work, networking, friends, family, and passion projects you can find yourself just on the go and doing THE most.  And it took me falling to realize, I need to sit my ass down somewhere and just breathe and take a damn break.  And that’s exactly what I did during the rest of the holiday.  I relaxed, regrouped and realized that what is right for me will come when it is time.  And more than likely it is going to come from somewhere I least expect in a package that I never thought it would be in.  But I have made the conscious choice to slow down and finally treat my FOMO.  After all FOMO is really just another way of saying you’re always looking for something/someone bigger and better.  And there comes a point in life where you have to recognize what you need is right there if you take the time to actually see it.  I will not go through 2015 with any Fears, including the fear of missing out.  Instead I will go into this New Year with Faith to know that what is for me is for me and patience to wait for what is right without fear.  And finally the wisdom to always look down before I walk!  Cheers to 2015!

Monique K.Bradley

I can be found on: Facebook | Twitter | Google+        
 

New Posts Coming In January!!!

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Wishing you a wonderful Holiday Season and a Happy New Year! New posts coming in January!

 

One Single Warning

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The Holiday season… The time to drink and be merry. It’s also happens to be my favorite time of the year. It is also that time of year for members of Singledom to beware!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  The Holiday season… The time to drink and be merry.  It’s also happens to be my favorite time of the year.  It is also that time of year for members of Singledom to beware!

My feeling of overall contentment and happiness started to became evident three weeks ago when one of my nearest and dearest college friends came to LA with his beautiful wife and adorable baby.  So “The Fam” as we call it (my closest inner circle of friends dating back to our college years) got together for a night on the town.  Being the sap I am I wanted to get a chance to see their baby as well as my other friend and his wife who had just given birth to a newborn.  And what can I say… I am a sucker for adorable babies.  It is so fulfilling to see my friends with their children.  So I went to an impromptu Sip-N-See.  Right before we headed out to Nic’s in Beverly Hills all the ladies got together to take a picture.  As we were taking the picture I noticed something very interesting.  While my other girlfriends were holding their adorable babies, I was holding a wine glass with Sauvignon Blanc.  And I literally laughed out loud.  I was really okay with it.

Then last week I came down with the worse Flu.  I was bedridden.  Last year when I got sick I lamented the fact that I was single and had to go to the store to pick up my meds and chicken noodle soup myself.  This year, I decided to reach out and say I need some help.  My various girlfriends brought me soup, tea, honey, meds and anything I needed they were there.  I wasn’t afraid to reach out and say, “I need to be taken care of!”

Then finally for the first year ever, I spent Thanksgiving here in LA.  I made a conscious choice to put me and my relaxation first rather than braving it through the crazy ass airports and the cold ass snow of the East coast.  Typically I spend the holidays doing so much travel between the two coasts by the time January comes and everyone else is feeling refreshed and renewed.  My ass is exhausted and grouchy!  Luckily my family understood.  After all, I will see them in a few weeks for Christmas.  And instead of dreading the trip back home I am actually looking forward to it.  I spent Thanksgiving with my girlfriend and her fiance and then spent the rest of the Holiday in my own home, watching Netflix, hanging out with friends, and using Blackout Friday to decorate my house for Christmas.  It was awesome!  I felt so grown and so liberated to spend the Holidays on my own terms.

I realized how wonderful it is to be single.  I can go and see my friends’ children, love on them, and then come home to peace and quiet, I can make the decision to come and go as I please.  I can spend the Holidays the way I want to.  When you think about it, being single is really a small moment in time when you look at the grand scheme of things.  And I am finally at a point when I am enjoying it.  There will come a time in my life when I will transition to out of Singledom and be a part of a “we” and have my own little babies running around.  But right now, I am enjoying my “Me” moment in time.  I find it liberating.

It seems now that I am in this place of pure contentment I am noticing how the Holidays have a way of really fucking with single folks.  If you are not armed and prepared or if you are having a melancholy single moment (which we all have) you can find yourself buying into the hype and become depressed over the Holidays.  And it is my due diligence to make sure my loyal readers do not become victim to the Single bashing/bullshit that comes with the Holiday season.  So with that you have been warned.  If you are not prepared you can subconsciously fall victim to the foolery of believing that being single during the Holiday season is a bad thing instead of embracing it.  Here is my Holiday warning list for my other members of Singledom:

 

Beware of the EHarmony, Match.com, Black People Meet, J Date, and all the other online dating marketing ploys.

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Beware of the EHarmony, Match.com, Black People Meet, J Date, and all the other online dating marketing ploys.

You’ll notice this is the time of year where the online dating commercials are in heavy rotation.  They offer free month trials.  They show happy couples dancing around with their wedding dates in small print.  Match.com’s latest commercials are a killer for us single folks!  This new ad campaign has a man who pretty much harasses single people in the street leading them to believe that if they do not sign up for match.com they will be doomed for the single life forever.  Get the fuck out of here!  If you happen to enjoy online dating, great for you.  I have plenty of friends who have met their significant other through this method of dating.  And I also believe you should be open to trying new things.  However, if that’s not your thing, you should not feel bad about it.  Or if you have tried online dating and it didn’t work for you these commercials can have you feeling like you are a loser.  “Why did it work for them, not me… What’s wrong with me!”  The devil is a liar!

Beware of those stupid ass holiday movies where women are desperate to have dates to weddings, family gatherings, etc. and pay men to pose as their boyfriend and.or fiance.

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Beware of those stupid ass holiday movies where a woman are desperate to have dates to weddings, family gatherings, etc. and pay men to pose as their boyfriend and.or fiancé.

 

I never understood the purpose of those movies.  It usual has the protagonist who is success, smart, gorgeous, but just can’t find a date to their sister’s wedding and they decide to pay off a man to pose as their date.  This perpetuates the idea that showing up to a family function single and by yourself is a bad thing.  Get the fuck out of here.  As we know, and as I say in almost every single post, meeting men is not hard.  There is no need to buy into that desperation.  And furthermore, is showing up to a family gathering as a confident single person really that damn bad?!  Ummmm… hell no.

 

Beware of the random text messages from Ghosts of Dates Past…

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Beware of the random text messages from Ghosts of Dates Past…

We have all experienced it.  The random text messages from a guy you went out with months ago, or an asshole ex boyfriend, or just some random.  Back in the day you would get what was obviously a group text that wasn’t personalized.  But these fools have gotten hip to the game and at least add your name to the end of that random:

Happy Thanksgiving…. Merry Christmas.

 Or some of them really personalize it.  I got a text from a random guy I went out years ago on Thanksgiving.  I was shocked.

Thinking of you here and there.  Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

My response…

Thank you.  Same to you.

Short, sweet, simple and to the point.  It left no room for him to go any further.  Don’t fall victim to the random text of men who have already showed their asses or haven’t proven themselves to be worthy of your time.  A random text message from a man who hasn’t bothered to reach out to you in months?  Ummmm…. I don’t think so.  There are 365 days in a year.  These calls and/or texts typically come when you’re feeling a little vulnerable.  And it’s easy to engage n the foolery.  But when a man has shown you who he really is.  You must believe him.  Do not fall into the trap of who he used to be, what you want him to be, or what you thought he was.  Go with his actions.  A random phone call/text on a Holiday when a man has been missing in action for months.  Well…. The writing is pretty much on the wall.

 

Beware of the fast forward thinking…. Stay in the present moment

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Beware of the fast forward thinking…. Stay in the present moment

It is easy to start fast forwarding to New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day and thinking about the possibility of being alone.  Trust me, I have been there.  As folks are making their New Year’s Eve plans you are suddenly aware that you could possibly be spending it single.  Or you think about spending yet another Valentine’s Day where cupid’s arrow took a detour and missed your heart.  IT’s okay and normal to have those human moments.  But try to live in the moment.  Today is December 1st.  A lot can happen in the next 30-45 days.  IF you lament on something that hasn’t happened you could miss the beauty of what is happening right in front of your eyes.  Trust me, I have been famous for fast forward thinking and missing out in the present moment.  But once you allow yourself to live in the moment you will find hidden gems you never noticed before.

 

Beware of the well meaning folks who will ask you about your love life…

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Beware of the well meaning folks who will ask you about your love life…

If you are a loyal reader to my blog, you know this used to drive me nuts!  I used to say the only time it is acceptable for someone to ask me:

So are you seeing anyone special… DO you have a boyfriend… Are you dating anyone

Is if it is followed by:

If not, I have a wonderful man I woud like you to meet.

I now recognize my annoyance of this question was due to my own insecurities about being single.  It’s actually an acceptable question to ask.  But it has taken me many years to recognize that and be in a place where I no longer want to haul off and smack someone for asking the question.  However, I suggest you have the Single’s version of the 2 minute elevator talk.  Have your one liner answer ready and available.  These comebacks have to be pleasant, non-irritable, and not leave any room for a follow up question.  It also has to give the appearance that you are open and not annoyed by the question.  Here are some of my favorites that have done the trick.

Question:  Do you have a boyfriend?

Answer:  Nope, but I’m accepting applications.

Question:  Are you dating anyone.

Answer:  I’m dating everyone

Question:  Are you seeing anyone special?

Answer:  Nope…  Specials is overrated…

Depending on how you feel or where you are in you single spectrum.  You can subtly change the subject.  Or you can blatantly ask someone if they know of anyone who you might vibe with.  Hell… it’s not a crime to let folks know you are single and open to meeting people.

Beware of feeling like you are the last woman standing…

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Beware of feeling like you are the last woman standing…

I have mastered the art of being the only single person at a dinner party.  It can be very easy to look around a room this time of year and feel like you are the last single woman on the planet.  Instead of feeling like an outsider, try to change you way of thinking about it.  Each of my friends who are married or coupled up in healthy, loving relationships, remind me that there is a such thing as happily ever after.  Being around people in healthy relationships is contagious.  It reminds you that what you are looking for in a mate is feasible and tangible.  As a matter of fact, I highly recommend you spend time around your favorite couples and soak in that great energy.

Last and not least, beware of feeling like being single is some type of disease…

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Last and not least, beware of feeling like being single is some type of disease…

What would happen if you actually started to enjoy this tie in your life?  What would happen if you recognized what a blessing it is to be able to spend time getting to know YOU and date YOU?  What if you recognized and acknowledged that you will NOT be single forever and there are great men out there who are actually looking for someone like YOU?  What if, you actually decided to spend this holiday in Singledom HAPPY and being okay with where you re in this present time?  Here’s the real deal, if you cannot enjoy being single and happy, how in the hell will you be able to enjoy being in a relationship?  IF you are not happy spending time with YOU how can you be happy with someone else.  Perhaps this is the time in your life where you really get to figure what make you happy and become whole so that when you meet your soul mate it is about two whole people coming together and building a life together.

At the end of the day, this Holiday could possibly be your last Holiday to be single so damn it,  enjoy it!

Monique K.Bradley

I can be found on: Facebook | Twitter | Google+        

 

 

 

Cocktails and Confessions

What happens when you get a group of single, married,  and divorced ladies together for some great wine and conversation about dating and relationships…  An amazing time.  Here are some pictures from my very first Cocktails and Confessions event.

For more more photos from this event, check out my Facebook Page and Like It:  https://www.facebook.com/ConfessionsOfASerialDaterInLa

Photos By: AhjeiNicole Photography

http://ahjeinicolephotography.zenfolio.com/p692630400

Password: confessions

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The creator and mastermind behind the hit blog Confessions of a Serial Dater in LA. #cocktailsandconfessions

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Event Location: Philippe in Beverly Hills

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Organization is key!

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Nothing like a nice glass of wine to get the discussion going.

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Me and some of my loyal readers. Priceless…

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Reading from the blog post. The Golden State

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The woman behind the blog…

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Talk Show coming soon…

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In my element…

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The Blues

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There are nice guys who work at the post office or garbage men who will treat you like a queen. But you are passing them up and not being open.

If you are successful, single and in your 30’s, you get used to “kind hearted” people making “suggestions” on what you should tweak, try, or compromise on when it comes to dating.  I used to get annoyed by the suggestions.  Well… I still do, but I have learned how to hide my annoyance and just smile and nod my head.  Seriously, at this stage of the game, I’m a marriage in, a divorce out, and I really think I know what I need and what I can and can’t compromise on.  However, it never fails, at some point you will hear someone say these words:

You should be more open.  You don’t necessarily have to date a guy who is an executive, who makes as much money as you do, or is just as successful as you do.  There are nice guys who work at the post office or garbage men who will treat you like a queen.  But you are passing them up and not being open. 

Now why in the fuck would I want to date a garbage man or a postal worker?  With all do respect, I appreciate the service garbage people do to keep our streets clean.  And I certainly love the postal workers who deliver me my checks in the mail.  But why in the fuck would I actively go out looking for someone who is blue collar when I am college educated, successful, driven, and bring a lot to the table?  I mean really?  Get the fuck out of here with that!  I am already hyped and digressing!  I used to feel the need to justify my needs and desires and try to make the person with that “suggestion” understand my view point.  Mind you the two times I recently heard this statement it came from the following two people at different times:

~A successful black executive man who is married to a white women.

~A stay at home mother of 3 whose husband is tall, fine, and a graduate of an Ivy League school.

Seriously, I can’t make this shit up!  I wanted to pummel both of them.  The man was a perfect example of an eligible black man who is off the market and married to a woman who isn’t black.  And for the stay at home mother of 3, why was she so comfortable telling me to let go of the idea that I can meet the kind of man she is married to?  Is it because I am now in my 30’s they believe I should just give up and date a man who is not up to my standards?  Especially when I was coming to the table with exactly what I was looking for.  I am not looking for a successful man to help me come up.  Hell, I am already up on my own.  I am looking for someone who at the very least is bringing to the table what I am bringing to the table.

jungle fever

The man was a perfect example of an eligible black man who is off the market and married to a woman who isn’t black.

If you are a loyal reader to my blog, you’ll notice, like any other human being, I have many flaws.  I am not ashamed to admit that.  I can’t always pretend like I am some perfect person and I never fuck up or doubt myself.  And no I am not being self deprecating.  I am just being honest.  If you cannot identify your areas of weakness then how will you grow as a person?  One of my tragic flaws is second guessing what I need in a relationship.  Sometimes even I am guilty of believing that what I am looking for and desiring in a relationship is unrealistic.  And I fall victim to the Settling Bullshit game.

A few months ago I bought into the hype that I should lower my standards.  I decided to test out this theory of the blue collar guy who is not on my level and see if this idea of him “treating me like a queen” and “just not being open to all possibilities” was indeed true.  Now, before I get cussed out for being a bourgeois, high falutin biatch, let me explain what I mean by Blue Collar.  I am not referring to the amount of money a man makes or how many degrees he has or doesn’t have.  There are plenty of men who have BA’s, MBA’s, and PHd’s who do not make a lot of money.  For instance, a teacher or a social worker does not necessarily make $100K+ a year.  But they have a certain mentality that I can relate to and the amount of money the make or do not make is irrelevant.  Their day to day work load and/or responsibilities are relatable.  There are some men out there who do not have a college degree but they have great careers and do very well for themselves.  They might have their own business or be in real estate, etc.  Hell… I was talking to a friend of mine whose close friend he graduated with from the same college works at JcPenny’s as a sales associate.

black-woman-professional1

But why in the fuck would I actively go out looking for someone who is blue collar when I am college educated, successful, driven, and bring a lot to the table?

Once again, I will say this until I am Blue in the face.  (Pun intended).  Women who have their own shit together with or without the help of a man and have a great career are not gold diggers looking for a come up because they set a standard of the type of career their mate should have.  To expect a career woman to actively seek out the garbage man, UPS delivery guy, or cashier at the local grocery store, is downright insulting!  It’s one thing if this woman happens to fall in love with a man and he swept her off her feet.  If that is her story and she is happy.  Well damn it… good for her and the guy.

My short lived relationship with the Blue Collar guy ended just as quickly as it began.  He wasn’t local and when we would try to make plans to see each other, he had to wait for his schedule to come out.  Or if we wanted to go out of town, he had to submit for approval for his days off.  Between my travel schedule and him not having control of his schedule the relationship… and I use that term lightly fizzled out.  And let me be clear, he didn’t treat me like a queen or put me on a pedestal.  Let me take that back… In the beginning he went out of his way.  I was like, maybe there is something to what these fools tell me.  Maybe I haven’t been open and have cheated myself out of a great man.  But then he did what a lot of men do, he got comfortable once he thought he had me.  On a side note…There are some men who have a mindset that regardless of what they do black women will put up with their shit because of how the media depicts the “good black men” shortage.  Even SOME Blue Collar men have a certain amount of arrogance to them that is mind boggling and completely unwarranted.  There I go… digressing again.  My point was, between the Blue Collar guy’s arrogance and inflexible schedule I had reached my boiling point.  I tried to call him to let him know that I was over the shit and that the “relationship” had run its course.  This jackass refused to answer the phone and sent me a text…

I know we’re done.  No need for you to tell me why.  My schedule and your lifestyle aren’t compatible.  I hope we can remain cordial.

Really?!  What a punk cowardly move.  And what an understatement!  But at least he saved me the phone call.  And there was no need for us to remain cordial, or anything else.  I was DONE.  And you know my rule.  When I’m done, I’m done.  And then I beat myself up for going out with him in the first damn place.  At the end of the day, I knew we weren’t compatible.  And I had allowed my fear to dictate my actions, which is a HUGE mistake.

Coward texts

I know we’re done. No need for you to tell me why. My schedule and your lifestyle aren’t compatible. I hope we can remain cordial.

This recent encounter made me think about people who try to push successful career women into relationships with men who aren’t on their level.  It’s interesting because we are almost made to feel bad about that expectation.  We are made to feel like we should just take whatever leftovers are handed to us and just beholding to be in a relationship.  THE DEVIL IS A LIAR!!!

Last weekend, I went to my college homecoming.  It had been many years since I walked the beautiful campus of Hampton University an HBCU (historically black college university) in Virginia.  And that’s when I had what Oprah Winfrey calls, “My Ah-ha!” moment.  I spent four years of my life at Hampton University surrounded by the crème de le crème of black society.  I was surrounded by people with like interests, desires, expectations, and determination.  I was surrounded by black men who were doing big things and planning lives that were far from just ordinary even as young college students.  I did not/ do not have any other frame of reference of settling for anything less because that was never an option. Returning to campus for my homecoming and seeing a lot the alumni from my Alma Mater who had brought their dreams to fruition motivated me.  And reminded me that there is no reason to settle and the kind of men I desire is out there.

Hampton University

Last weekend, I went to my college homecoming. It had been many years since I walked the beautiful campus of Hampton University…

Moving to LA it can be easy to think you need to lower your standards out of the fear you put in your mind of, “Oh shit!  What I am looking for is not attainable!  The type of man I am looking for is married, not attracted to black women, or doesn’t exist.” Also, if you are single in LA you know the men out here are a different bread.  They do not approach women and court them like most men in other parts of the country.  The exception is usually men who are not from here, or if they are from here they spent time away and return with some damn sense.  And no, this is not a bitter bitch rant.  I believe there are good men out there and I never want to come off like a “man hater.” I can only speak form my own experiences.

Going back to my college, lovingly referred to by our Alumni as our  “Home by the sea” reinvigorated me and reminded me that if I am patient and continue to believe and not settle I can have what I am looking for.  In the meantime, I will enjoy my life just as it is and grow my own empire.  So when I finally meet my soul mate it will be the merging of two kingdoms and not the merging of a servant and a queen!  Just sayin’!

Monique K.Bradley

I can be found on: Facebook | Twitter | Google+        

 

 

 

Please join me for Cocktails and Confessions!

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Save the Date- Cocktails and Confessions Tuesday, November 18th, 2014!

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Scrambled or Sunny-side Up?

Black-Women-Study

“But you’re 37 years old. The only way you could have kids is through scientific technology. You’re too old to have them naturally.”

I know I said I was taking a dating break.  That lasted for an entire 2 ½ weeks.  What can I say?  I’m a sucker.  You can’t keep a sistah down for the count for too damn long!  LOL!  And I didn’t go looking for a date.  It just crept up on me.  I was having a late night in the office last week and to my surprise I got a phone call from “Joseph.”  I met “Joseph months ago at a Grammy Event.  I didn’t really think much of it when I gave him my business card.  I was networking and we happened to be standing next to each other at the bar and he struck up a conversation.  Did I mention the Grammy’s were in February?  It is now October.  So we are talking a good eight months later!  Eight fucking months and he just decided to call?!  Really?

Joseph:  I know you probably don’t remember me.  We met at that Grammy event a while back.

Me:  I remember you.  How have you been?

Joseph:  I’ve been great.  How about you?

Me:  Since I last saw you, I got married, had 2.5 children…

Joseph:  I know it’s been a while and I was taking a chance calling you.  I was working on finishing up my doctorate and I just graduated a few weeks ago and now have more time on my hands.

Me:  Congratulations.

Joseph:  Thank you.  Are you busy this weekend?

I knew I had decided to take a break.  But I was slightly intrigued and even more so bored.  I needed to get back in the dating scene to hone my skills.  It’s easy to get rusty if you don’t get out there for too long.  From what I remember “Joseph” was a decent looking guy.  And we shared a mutual friend so he came with references.

Me:  I’m free Sunday afternoon.

Joseph:  Okay.  Cool.  I’ll text you a spot Sunday morning for us to meet up.  Let’s say 2pm?

Me:  See you then.

black-couple-laughing-

I didn’t really think much of it when I gave him my business card. I was networking and we happened to be standing next to each other at the bar and he struck up a conversation.

On Sunday I found myself pulling up to Mi Piace in Old Pasadena.  And there was “Joseph.”  He was a little older than I remembered… actually A LOT older.  Now anyone who is a loyal reader to my blog knows I have a tendency to date men who are slightly older than me.  I just like a man with a little bit of experience and salt and pepper hair around the temples.  But I recently came to the conclusion that 47 which is ten years older than me is my age limit.  Looking at “Joseph” he had to be a good 50 years old!  A handsome 50 years old, but definitely older.  I was suddenly relieved it was an afternoon date.  I could easily be in and out.

He pulled out my chair for me… you know men who are older are old school gentleman.  That was a plus.  I immediately started thinking about women I knew in the late 40’s/early 50’s that I could hook him up with.  I ordered a glass of Sauvignon Blanc and the conversation ensued.  “Joseph” was a father of 3 boys.  His oldest son was 32 years old.  Yep…I said it… 32 years old…also known as 5 years younger than me.  He had 2 granddaughters.  And come to find out “Joseph” was 53 years old!  And since he had just gotten his doctorate in Spiritual Philosophy he was the “authority” on every topic under the sun.  He talked about his life story growing up in the projects and making his way out to become a successful Scientist.  His life story was quite interesting.  I was impressed and moved by his story.  But it was a LONG story considering there were five decades to cover.

Then we got on the topic of religion.  I could have sworn religion and politics were two topics to avoid on a first date.  I could appreciate that he considered himself to be spiritual and not religious.  I had major issues with “religious” judgmental, hypocritical people.  I had experienced being part of a church first family and heard how they spoke about their congregants and preached one thing and lived a completely different way Monday-Saturday.  I knew I could never be in another situation like that.  Don’t get me wrong, it is important that my man is Christian but I also know it was equally important he was a spiritual person not a dogmatic religious type.  There I go digressing…

Young woman rolling her eyes

I started doing what I normally did when I tuned out. I started thinking about my grocery list for the week, what color I was going to paint my room, my outfits for my upcoming homecoming weekend at my Alma Matter.

My point was, “Joseph” went on a long diatribe about… well I don’t remember exactly what it was about because I tuned out after the first 6 minutes of the his monologue.  I started doing what I normally did when I tuned out.  I started thinking about my grocery list for the week, what color I was going to paint my room, my outfits for my upcoming homecoming weekend at my Alma Matter.  I didn’t realize I had completely tuned out until “Joseph” chimed in.

Joseph:  Did you want to order dessert?

Me:  Oh no.  I am full.  Besides today isn’t my cheat day.

Joseph:  Cheat day?

ME:  Yeah.  I try to watch what I eat.  I look forward to the day when I don’t have to think about it.

Joseph:  When would that be?

Me: Probably when I’m pregnant.  I won’t eat like crazy but at least I won’t have to worry about sucking in.

This was a conversation I would normally NEVER have with a man I was interested in.  But since I had already decided I was putting “Joseph” in the friend category I wasn’t concerned about impressing him.  Also, I knew since he had grandkids already he certainly wasn’t interested in having any more children.  It was my easy way out.

Joseph:  You want kids?

Me:  Of course!  I can’t wait to be a mom one day.

Joseph:  How many?

MeProbably two.

Joseph:  But you’re 37 years old.  The only way you could have kids is through scientific technology.  You’re too old to have them naturally.

Me:  Excuse me?

Joseph:  I’m just stating the scientific facts.  You’re up there in age and you probably will have to go the IVF route to have kids.  You don’t have many viable eggs left.

Me:  That’s not true.  What are you talking about?

Joseph:  It is true. It’s just science.  Each year you are losing eggs.  And the eggs you have are probably not good eggs. Women who have kids at your age go have to go to fertility specialist.  I guess I have to think about whether or not I want more kids if I am going to date you.

eggs

I recently had the reassurance that I in fact had a young uterus and plenty of healthy eggs. So my baby making days weren’t behind me. As a matter of fact I knew I had some time on the clock. I was relieved. It was nice to know my clock and my ambitions were on the same page.

I couldn’t believe this guy!  I couldn’t believe he actually said that with a straight face.  I realized I was out with the guy who thought he knew everything because he had just gotten his doctorate!  Perhaps this was the bullshit he fed to insecure woman so he could convince them not to have any more kids.  I had to remind myself “Joseph” and I shared a mutual friend.  So I didn’t want to go off on him and risk putting our friend in an awkward situation.  I also knew I would more than likely run into him again and I didn’t want shit to get weird.  That’s the highs and lows of dating someone where you both share a mutual friend.  If shit works out GREAT, but if not, you have to be cognizant of all parties involved.  This was part of my dating growth.  Back in my heyday, I wouldn’t have given a damn.  I would have walked the fuck out and kept it moving.  But now that I was wiser and had more dating “maturity” (I say that sarcastically) I was doing things different.

Me:  Well, Joseph.  I think you’re a nice guy.  But I think you and I are at two different places in life.  You are winding down and I am just beginning to enter a certain stage of my life that you have obviously graduated from.

I know that was a settle Read.  What can I say?  My old bitch habits are hard to shake.

Joseph:  You’re probably right.

Me:  But thanks for a great lunch.  And I will see you around.

He stood up and gave me a hug.  And a walked out of the restaurant and got in my car.

I could have fallen for this settle manipulation and general overall ignorance.  As a matter of fact, to be perfectly honest, although I know I want kids eventually, I am enjoying my life right now.  For me, I can’t even think about having children until I meet the man who will ultimately be my husband.  That’s my personal choice and I do not knock women who decide to do it on their own.  That is their personal choice.  I thank God every single day I did not have children with my ex-husband.  My guardian angels were looking out for me!  I was grateful I would have my future children with the right man… my soul mate.

In recent years, I have been around women where it has been difficult for them to conceive.  I see the pain in their eyes and the heartache of the uncertainty of knowing if they will one day experience what it is like to rub their pregnant bellies and give birth to their biological children.  And these are women who would make amazing mothers.  And it is pretty fucking scary thought.   Ironically, we spend most of our 20’s avoiding getting pregnant.  And being “responsible” and taking the necessary precautions to make sure we do not “slip” up.   And then when you are ready.  You want it to happen immediately.  And for some people it ain’t easy.  And that is so unfortunate.

black-baby

Don’t get me wrong, there does come a point in a woman’s life where they do need to consider their birthing/motherhood options. Time stops for no one.

I recently had the reassurance that I in fact had a young uterus and plenty of healthy eggs.  So my baby making days weren’t behind me.  As a matter of fact I knew I had some time on the clock.  I was relieved.  It was nice to know my clock and my ambitions were on the same page.  And suddenly the sun was shining brighter and a wave of calm came over me.  I was one of the lucky ones.

However, “Joseph’s” statement had my brain scrambled.  Is this the new thing some men are doing?  Making women feel insecure about their child bearing years?  Is this why so many women of a certain age start freaking out about their biological clock and then make bad dating decisions based on the fear that their time is running out?  Now that I am a certain age why were certain people attempting to make my biological clock tick faster than it needed to?  Why did I feel the need to fit into someone else’s box.  Before I got the reassuring news of my fertility, I was freaking out.  Although my life is great where it is, I had begun to think about the future.  The “what ifs” the “Worse case scenarios” the “Oh shit, time is ticking.”

biological-clock

Is this why so many women of a certain age start freaking out about their biological clock and then make bad dating decisions based on the fear that their time is running out? Now that I am a certain age why were certain people attempting to make my biological clock tick faster than it needed to?

Thank goodness I knew I was okay.  And why wouldn’t I be?  When I thought about it, women like Halle Berry, Kim Fields, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, Nia Long, Celene Dion, Tina Fey, Salma Hayek, Nicole Kidman, and Madonna had given birth to their own biological children in their 40’s!  And let’s take this to real life non celebrities.  My mentor gave birth to her first child when she was 43 years old.  So why was I allowing other’s people’s issues and biological clocks to effective my view of my own baby making years?

halle pregnant

Thank goodness I knew I was okay. And why wouldn’t I be? When I thought about it, women like Halle Berry, Kim Fields, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, Nia Long, Celene Dion, Tina Fey, Salma Hayek, Nicole Kidman, and Madonna had given birth to their own biological children in their 40’s!

Being single and in your 30’s is fun, exhilarating, and freeing, but it is also stressful and can really knock you down at times.  We have enough to worry about so why put extra shit on our plates worrying about the biological clock?  I realized there are so many women out there who have allowed this worry and concern to dominate how they approach dating where it isn’t even fun anymore because they are dating out of desperation instead of enjoyment.  And I believe some men perpetuate this insecurity by making dumb ass statements similar to “Joseph’s”.  And we actually believe that shit and are buying into the foolery.

black-mom-baby

I can’t wait to be a mom one day!

Don’t get me wrong, there does come a point in a woman’s life where they do need to consider their birthing/motherhood options.  Time stops for no one.  And it is a reality that women of a certain age have to deal with.  But cross that bridge when you get to it!  In the meantime do NOT let anyone dictate your clock.  And by all means do not let your fear of the unknown push you into dating desperation.  Think back to how it was when you were dating in your 20’s.  There was a certain amount of freedom you had because you knew you had options.  If you saw shit that wasn’t right, you kept it moving.  Why does that have to change when you hit your 30’s?  Why do you suddenly feel the need to settle for some bullshit because you are scared you won’t get shit?  IT’s time to reclaim your own timing and remember who you are and what you are bringing to the table.  All will work itself out.  Just allow yourself to enjoy the process and date freely without fear.  After all, that’s the beauty of dating in your 30’s in up.  Been there, done that, learned the lesson, and are fully open to the journey.

Monique K.Bradley

I can be found on: Facebook | Twitter | Google+        

 

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