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.
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.
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.
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.
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’!