Kanye'd, White Clawing & Other 2020 Dating Trends You Should Know About
It truly never fails. At the turn of every new year, there are dating terms that make their way into cyberspace. Each year, there are always a few whose names tickle me. There are also a couple that end up having me like, "Man, I wish there was a name for that when I was in college." (Like weaseling, which I'll get to in just a sec.)
As far as some of the most popular dating trends for 2020 go, I must admit that they're more cautionary tales than anything. If you're able to recognize them very early on, they can prevent you from becoming so jaded that you find yourself swearing off dating for the rest of the year. Are you ready to see what kind of foolishness folks are plotting in this new decade of ours? Brace yourself. Some of them are real doozies.
2020 Dating Trends To Look Out For
This is one that I've never really understood. I mean, if you're not interested in someone, why give them your number at all? Yet dial-toning is right up there at the top of the list of what will be big dating trends in the new year. It's not when you ghost someone. It's when you give someone your contact info and then never respond to their calls. Not only is this pretty cowardly (because again, if you're not interested, just say that…in a nice way, of course), it also is a huge waste of everyone's time. Better to say, "Thanks, but no thanks" on the front end than to make it harder on the next girl that ole' boy approaches all because he can't shake how you gave him the impression that you were interested when actually…you weren't.
Talk about being passive-freakin'-aggressive. I think that just about any woman can relate to weasels—I mean, weaseling. Picture it: You break up with someone, you take the time that you need to heal (good for you), and right when you've started getting used to going at least a few days without thinking about your ex, here he comes liking your Instagram pics again. Anyone who does this knows exactly what they are doing—trying to get back into your head, heart and, quite possibly your bed.
I don't like weaseling because if we are not together and you want my attention again, you should go with a bolder gesture than commenting on social media. But, that's just me. Anyway, if you happen to notice this going down all of a sudden, before you get too excited, just remember that they don't call it "weaseling" for nothin'.
So, a guy I know once told me that he used to make a habit of having sex with women he wasn't even remotely attracted to. Why would someone do something crazy like that? According to him, the "ugly girl" (his words, not mine) would be so grateful for his, uh, time that she would run and tell all of the women he was interested in how good he was—and that would make "bagging them" (again, his words not mine) so much easier to do. Unfortunately, that's not as uncommon as you might think. In fact, there is a whole word for it: leapfrogging, which is when you connect with one person in order to ultimately connect with someone else.
I will admit that the guy I told you about is partaking in the savage 2.0 version of leapfrogging. Oftentimes, this happens more with online dating than anything else. You know, like when someone sees a group shot and might reach out to you, making you believe they are interested, when really, they want to get to know the woman to your left in the picture. Either way, leapfrogging can be the worse, so make sure to keep your Spidey senses up when meeting someone new—whether it's online or off.
Y'all, please tell me you ain't never been this chick. SMDH. Exoskeletoning is what happens when an ex is semi-stalking. They aren't wasting their time, effort, and cyber skills on their ex but the current partner of their ex. If you're currently seeing someone new and a random friend request pops up from someone you don't know or, all of a sudden, you feel like you are being gaslit by an online troll, it might not be random. It could very well be some bitter woman exoskeletoning you. Proceed with caution. Ask the guy you're seeing if he recognizes ole' girl, too.
I know some of y'all are hyped that Kanye appears to have become this super Christian and everything, but anyone who converts and then says he wants to call himself "Christian Genius Billionaire" is someone I think could stand to take some more Bible classes, especially on humility. (Check Luke 14:11). But I digress. I will say this—no one is as consistently inconsistent as Kanye and, if there's one thing we can be certain of, it's that he doesn't hold his tongue…ever.
That said, can you guess what being "Kanye'd" means? It's literally when you're on a date with someone and you can't get a word in because they are flapping their jaws, non-stop, the entire time. Be careful because this tends to be a sign of a potential narcissist which makes the dating term even more fitting. But again…I digress.
Healthy relationships require compromise. Of course, they do. But if your definition of compromising is acting like you love things that you don't even like, what you may be participating in is a dating trend known as eclipsing.
Yep, it's basically when you start to date someone and, in order to appear as if the two of you are truly compatible, you act like you enjoy the same things that they do, even when you don't.
Remember the old school movieRoxanne (Steve Martin, Daryl Hannah)? When a man gets another man to tell him what to say to win over a woman, you know that doesn't really work in your favor. It's living a lie which is ultimately a total waste of your time—and his. Don't do it. It ain't worth it.
This past fall, I wrote "Don't Mistake A Great Sex Partner For A Great Life Partner" which fits pretty well when it comes to another dating trend called "white clawing". It's when you stay with someone who you're not mentally, emotionally or spiritually stimulated by but, still, you keep them around because they are physically attractive and appealing. I've done this a few times. The big problem with white clawing is the more you self-evolve, the more you want someone who checks all of your boxes.
Men who can ring your bell in all categories do exist, however, you won't be able to see them if you're holding on too tightly to nothing but looks, though. Just something to think about.
If any of these dating trends triggered me, I must admit that it's this one right here. There is a particular man from my past who is utterly notorious when it comes to cause-playing. What in the world is that?
It's when you break things off with someone, but they try and find a way back into your good graces by asking for a favor or even to participate in something that appears altruistic like donating to a cause that they are a part of.
To me, it's the nicer form of weaseling because I'm still over here like, "Dude, if you want to reconnect, just say that. Spare me all of these GoFundMe links." It's a new year. I'll probably actually say that if he pulls that stunt again (and knowing him, he will).
Let me just put it right on out there—vampiring is nothing more than a booty call. It's literally all about folks who only hit you up during the "witching hours" (which legend claims is typically somewhere around 3 a.m, though I'm not sure which time zone). Unless a guy is overseas and hours ahead (or behind) you or there's some type of life-altering emergency going down, there really is no reason for a man to hit you up past midnight "just to talk". You're grown, so if booty calls are your thing, do you. But if that's the only time you're getting hit up, please don't romanticize what's going on. He wants to hit or, at the very least, discuss hittin'. Otherwise, he'd call you during normal interaction hours, not when so-called vampires are roaming the streets.
OK, I thought "settling" was enough of a wake-up call, but it seems like some of us require more of a punch to the gut. If you're out here fleabagging, you're dating someone who you know, beyond the shadow of a doubt, is totally wrong for you. (See "Why We Love Men Who Are Absolutely No Good For Us" and "My Eureka Moment For Why I'm Not Into 'Nice Guys'"). While I'm not totally sure what that has to do with fleabags, I do know that with the definitions of the word using other words like "run-down" and "cheap", that's enough to make me turn up my nose and want to avoid putting myself in a fleabagging dating scenario at all costs. I hope you are on your monitor or smartphone shaking your head and saying, "Same sis. Same."
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Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
Exclusive: Gabrielle Union On Radical Transparency, Being Diagnosed With Perimenopause And Embracing What’s Next
Whenever Gabrielle Union graces the movie screen, she immediately commands attention. From her unforgettable scenes in films like Bring It On and Two Can Play That Game to her most recent film, in which she stars and produces Netflix’s The Perfect Find, there’s no denying that she is that girl.
Off-screen, she uses that power for good by sharing her trials and tribulations with other women in hopes of helping those who may be going through the same things or preventing them from experiencing them altogether. Recently, the Flawless by Gabrielle Union founder partnered with Clearblue to speak at the launch of their Menopause Stage Indicator, where she also shared her experience with being perimenopausal.
In a xoNecoleexclusive, the iconic actress opens up about embracing this season of her life, new projects, and overall being a “bad motherfucker.” Gabrielle reveals that she was 37 years old when she was diagnosed with perimenopause and is still going through it at 51 years old. Mayo Clinic says perimenopause “refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years.”
“I haven't crossed over the next phase just yet, but I think part of it is when you hear any form of menopause, you automatically think of your mother or grandmother. It feels like an old-person thing, but for me, I was 37 and like not understanding what that really meant for me. And I don't think we focus so much on the word menopause without understanding that perimenopause is just the time before menopause,” she tells us.
Photo by Brian Thomas
"But you can experience a lot of the same things during that period that people talk about, that they experienced during menopause. So you could get a hot flash, you could get the weight gain, the hair loss, depression, anxiety, like all of it, mental health challenges, all of that can come, you know, at any stage of the menopausal journey and like for me, I've been in perimenopause like 13, 14 years. When you know, most doctors are like, ‘Oh, but it's usually about ten years, and I'm like, ‘Uhh, I’m still going (laughs).’”
Conversations about perimenopause, fibroids, and all the things that are associated with women’s bodies have often been considered taboo and thus not discussed publicly. However, times are changing, and thanks to the Gabrielle’s and the Tia Mowry’s, more women are having an authentic discourse about women’s health. These open discussions lead to the creation of more safe spaces and support for one another.
“I want to be in community with folks. I don't ever want to feel like I'm on an island about anything. So, if I can help create community where we are lacking, I want to be a part of that,” she says. “So, it's like there's no harm in talking about it. You know what I mean? Like, I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change. I'm just getting better and stronger and more intelligent, more wise, more patient, more compassionate, more empathetic. All of that is very, very welcomed, and none of it should be scary.”
The Being Mary Jane star hasn’t been shy about her stance on therapy. If you don’t know, here’s a hint: she’s all for it, and she encourages others to try it as well. She likens therapy to dating by suggesting that you keep looking for the right therapist to match your needs. Two other essential keys to her growth are radical transparency and radical acceptance (though she admits she is still working on the latter).
"I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change."
Gabrielle Union and Kaavia Union-Wade
Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images
“I hope that a.) you recognize that you're not alone. Seek out help and know that it's okay to be honest about what the hell is happening in your life. That's the only way that you know you can get help, and that's also the only other way that people know that you are in need if there's something going on,” she says, “because we have all these big, very wild, high expectations of people, but if they don't know what they're actually dealing with, they're always going to be failing, and you will always be disappointed. So how about just tell the truth, be transparent, and let people know where you are. So they can be of service, they can be compassionate.”
Gabrielle’s transparency is what makes her so relatable, and has so many people root for her. Whether through her TV and film projects, her memoirs, or her social media, the actress has a knack for making you feel like she’s your homegirl. Scrolling through her Instagram, you see the special moments with her family, exciting new business ventures, and jaw-dropping fashion moments. Throughout her life and career, we’ve seen her evolve in a multitude of ways. From producing films to starting a haircare line to marriage and motherhood, her journey is a story of courage and triumph. And right now, in this season, she’s asking, “What’s next?”
“This is a season of discovery and change. In a billion ways,” says the NAACP Image Award winner. “The notion of like, ‘Oh, so and so changed. They got brand new.’ I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
"I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
She continues, “So I'm just trying to figure out what's next. You know what I mean? I'm jumping into what's next. I'm excited going into what's next and new. I'm just sort of embracing all of what life has to offer.”
Look out for Gabrielle in the upcoming indie film Riff Raff, which is a crime comedy starring her and Jennifer Coolidge, and she will also produce The Idea of You, which stars Anne Hathaway.
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Victoria Monét has had an incredible year. Thanks to the success of the widely popular “On My Mama” that went viral, the singer/ songwriter’s Jaguar II album debuted in the top 10 of Billboard’s Top R&B Albums chart. She also went on to headline her own sold-out tour. So, when the MTV VMAs happened in September, everyone was surprised to learn that Victoria’s team was told that it was “too early” for the “Smoke” artist to perform at the award show. However, a couple of months later, the mom of one received seven Grammy nominations, including “Best R&B Album” and “Record Of The Year.”
Victoria is currently in London and stopped by The Dotty Show on Apple Music and shared how she feels “validated” after being dismissed by the VMAs.
“It really does feel nice and validating because, in my head, the reason why I wanted to be a performer at the VMAs or award ceremonies like that is because I felt like I am at the place where I should. I would work really hard to put on the best show that I could, and I was excited to do so,” she said.
“And I guess the best way to describe it for me is like when you're like on a sports team, and the coach is like, ‘No, you gotta sit this one out.’ When they finally put you in, and then you score all these points, and it feels like that feeling. You're like, yes, I knew it wasn't tripping, but I knew I worked hard for this, and so it's been super validating to just have these accolades come after a moment like that, and I know the fans feel vindicated for me.
While her fans called the VMAs out on their decision, the “Moment” singer kept it cute and is still open to performing at the iconic award show. “I feel no ill towards them because it's just maybe that's just truly how they felt at the time, but I hope their mind has changed,” she admitted.
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