Quantcast
Shutterstock

Are You His Partner Or His Second Mama?

Just a reminder that your husband needs a wife...not another mother.

Love & Relationships

So, here's my two cents, right out the gate. Unless you're someone who can't even remotely relate to the second title in this article (you know, second mama), you might want to skim this for now and dig deeper into it when it's not gonna have you so on-10 that you won't be able to concentrate on all of the other reasons why you're online right now. I say that because I'm gonna be honest with you. This isn't an easy read. It's not a coddling one. And, for some people, it's gonna be hella uncomfortable. That's the bad news. The good news is, if once you do get to the end of this piece, you find that you can actually relate (perhaps more than you ever wanted to), it can be the first step toward doing some serious switching up—for the sake of your husband's peace of mind and the health and well-being of your marriage. Because here's another truth—while the world does have its fair share of mama's boys (which we'll have to get into at another time), it also has quite a few wives who think their role is to be their husband's other mother too. And both sides of that fence ain't good. Not by a long shot.

And just how can you know if you qualify as being a second mama? Brace yourself, now.

Somehow, You Can’t Tell the Difference Between “Parent” and “Partner”

media.giphy.com

Recently, I was having a conversation with some 20-somethings about how they are ready to dismantle patriarchy. My response was, "Are you sure? That means you don't want a man to provide for the home. You don't want him to propose to you. Chivalry is pretty much out the door as well. All of those things are birthed out of patriarchy." One of them said something that was so…expected. "Those things are masculinity, not patriarchy." Yeah, no sale, sis. Patriarchy means "male head" and the things that I defined are male leadership initiative roles. If you're a Bible follower, I Corinthians 11:1-6 is pretty clear on how patriarchy and matriarchy are absolutely supposed to work together. This is why I'm not a feminist; I am a complementarian. Patriarchy isn't a bad word. The abuse of patriarchy is where problems arise. So, where am I going when it comes to this particular point?

Just like, when ego and a misunderstanding of what true manhood is can lead to the misuse of patriarchy, when wives don't keep balance in mind as well, oftentimes they can abuse their own role in their relationship too.

An example would be bragging about how you've got to "train" or "raise" your husband like he's a child or pet. Matter of fact, I tend to be pretty floored with the degrading things that I've heard some women so casually say; things that, if a man said the same things about them, all hell would break loose (imagine a man saying that he had to train or raise you). Yet, some of the bossiest wives that I know—and I know a few—have absolutely no problem feeling and conveying that they are to take over where their husband's mama left off.

The reality is, that's not what marriage is about at all. To parent is to rear children. A life partner is someone who shares life with you.

If you don't get the difference between the two, after reading my second point, get into some marriage counseling, just as soon as you possibly can. No marriage should consist of either spouse treating their partner like a child. If you feel justified in doing so, something is off and wrong—very much so.

You Think Your Job Is to “Raise” Your Husband Rather than HELP Him

media.giphy.com

I recently watched a movie entitled,Perfectly Single (Omar Gooding, DomiNque Perry, Erica Hubbard, Joe Torry, Torrei Hart). While Torrei's body was killin' in the film (whew!), as a marriage life coach, her character irked me, in all kinds of ways. Aside from the fact that she was cheating on her husband (yes, some Black women DO cheat), she treated him like she was his warden. There was a scene where, he wanted to go play ball with a friend that she didn't like. When the friend came to the house, she told him that her man couldn't come "out to play". Then she told her husband not to hang out with the guy because he was single. Shoot, it was a movie and I wasn't in it and still, I was slightly triggered. Why? Because I have clients who are just like this.

If you've read my stuff, for even a couple of months, you know that I rock with Scripture pretty hard. The first introduction to a woman in the Bible is Genesis 2:18. The word that was used is "helper". A helper is someone who "gives assistance, support, etc."

When it comes to actually helping someone out—and please hear me when I say this—you don't get to decide if you're doing so alone. The individual on the receiving end also needs to feel like you are assisting and supporting.

I can't tell you how many husbands have come to me, at their complete and total wit's end because, while their wife fully believes that her methods are helpful, they are so pushy, condescending and suffocating, that they are doing any and everything but helping their husbands out. So, let me say this if you are engaged or are contemplating it. A part of the reason why it's so dangerous to go into a marriage thinking that your partner will change after you say "I do" is it can cause you to also assume that it's your job to do the changing. IT ISN'T (check out "The Right Relationship IMPROVES Not CHANGES You").

It's two grown folks who need to get married and adults don't need to be raised. And as a wife, while your husband should be providing for and protecting you (which goes well beyond finances), you should be supporting him.

If you read all of this and are thinking to yourself, "Girl, 'raise'…'support'…what's the difference?", ask your husband what the difference is. If you're actually not helping him as much as you think that you are, trust me, he'll be more than happy to tell you that.

Nagging Is the Language You Are Most Fluent In

media.giphy.com

One more Scripture, OK? And yes, if you're thin-skinned, brace yourself. Proverbs 21:9(AMPC) tells us, "It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop [on the flat oriental roof, exposed to all kinds of weather] than in a house shared with a nagging, quarrelsome, and faultfinding woman." While that verse may be a bit of an "ouch", when you really stop and let it sink in, it should only be offensive to the women it applies to. Think about it. If your husband was constantly nagging, picking fights and pointing out your flaws, wouldn't you prefer to be any and everywhere but around him?

Besides, I don't get why people feel like nagging is effective anyway. Even if you keep repeating yourself about something until you get your way, what did you really win—other than your own way? The person you nagged is gonna be sick and tired of you, they won't be giving you, whatever it is, in the right spirit and nagging is just an immature form of trying to control someone. "But Shellie, my husband won't listen any other way." If that's your immediate thought, again, get into some therapy.

Conceding is not the same thing as connecting. If nagging is your go-to way to get things done in your home, another form of communication needs to be taught. For the sake of your marriage.

Trust me.

Your Sex Life Is Suffering. Severely So.

media.giphy.com

I once worked with some clients where the wife had a major gripe. She had a high sex drive and, for the first couple of years of her marriage, so did her husband. About three years in, though, he would decline her desires to get it in. Initially, she thought it was because he was cheating. He said that he had no interest in doing that. What hadn't crossed her mind is what I think is another valid point.

If you don't remember anything else from this article, please remember that no man wants to have sex with his mama. That's not just literally (eww). I also mean that if you are acting like you're his second mother, unless he's a mama's boy (which again, is another article for another time), he's going to find you to be totally off-putting. Plus, the thought of having sex with you to be kinda creepy.

Once this point was brought up to the wife (and the husband co-signed), while she did admit that she had the tendency to be pretty overbearing, she didn't get why her husband didn't want to have sex if he was still attracted to her (which he was). I gave her the comparison of how a lot of new mothers feel about their breasts while they are breastfeeding. What their husband enjoys sexually, they are now using to feed their little one. Mentally switching gears can be complicated, to say the least. Same thing for a man who is around a woman who thinks she's another mother all of the time. If she's acting like that, he's going to lean towards treating her that way (and more like a rebellious teen than a compliant child, for obvious reasons, by the way). And that is going to make having sex with her a total turn-off—no matter how physically attracted to her he may be.

I can't say it enough—no man wants to sleep with his mama. If you're tempted to act like you are his mother, but at the same time, you enjoy your sex life, take that as a word of caution. Some marriages have become sexless, for no other reason than this very point.

He Has NO PEACE in Your Presence

media.giphy.com

I believe I've shared before that a husband I know once said to me, "Shellie, make sure that you provide peace in your home. Men prefer 'ugly peace' to 'pretty loud' any day." No, he wasn't calling me unattractive; I'm merely providing the bottom line of a very long conversation about what a lot of men desire and seemingly don't get in their intimate relationship—SOME FREAKIN' PEACE. While it's easy to only think of peace in the context of stillness or quiet, I feel that it's always important to look at it from the definition of shalom (the Hebrew word for peace), simply because the definitions are so vast. It literally means all of the following words—completeness, wholeness, health, peace, welfare, safety, soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfectness, fullness, rest, harmony, the absence of agitation or discord.

When a woman is in "mama mode", while a good one definitely strives for moments of peace, the greater goal is training and providing healthy discipline to their child, so that they can grow up to be responsible and accountable. But a wife? Her ambition should be to be at peace with herself, for her marriage to be at peace and for her husband to feel at peace with her and their union. Wholeness, tranquility, prosperity, rest and harmony are what she strives for, as he does the same.

If you and your husband can't say that this is what's happening in your household, revisiting if a part of the reason is because you're more of a "mama" than a "wife" is certainly well worth your time.

You Immediately Got Triggered When You Saw the Title of This Article

media.giphy.com

You know what they say. Hit dog will holler. Every single time. And while I know that some of you clicked onto this because you were curious, I also will bet my next paycheck from xoNecole that some of y'all got triggered, from the very moment you read the title. You were ready to justify why you do some of the things mentioned here and you're probably a little more than irritated that there was little room given for why "mothering your man" is an OK thing to do. That's because it's not. Again, if you're with someone who acts immature (whether emotionally or otherwise), who you don't feel is a true partner and/or who is mad irresponsible, no one is saying that you should just grin and bear it. What I am saying is treating a man like he's your son isn't the answer. Get into some therapy, for real, for real. Set some boundaries. But don't take on the role of someone who has already filled the position—his actual mother.

It can't be said enough that, in healthy relationships, two people partner up not parent one another.

If you're not entirely sure which role you're playing in your relationship, ask your husband and be open to hearing the answer. The sooner any woman is less of their man's (second) mama, the quicker she can be what he so desperately needs—a partner, a support system…a wife.

Join our xoTribe, an exclusive community dedicated to YOU and your stories and all things xoNecole. Be a part of a growing community of women from all over the world who come together to uplift, inspire, and inform each other on all things related to the glow up.

Featured image by Shutterstock

We all know what it is to love, be loved, or be in love – or at least we think we do. But what would you say if I were to tell you that so much of the love that you thought you’d been in was actually a little thing called limerence? No, it doesn’t sound as romantic – and it’s not – unless you’re into the whole Obsessed-type of love. But one might say at least one side of that dynamic might be…thrilling.

Keep reading...Show less
The daily empowerment fix you need.
Make things inbox official.

Idris Elba and Sabrina Dhowre Elba are gearing up for the second season of their podcast Coupledom where they interview partners in business and/or romance. The stunning couple has been married for three years but they have been together for a total of six years. During that time, they have developed many partnerships but quickly learned that working together isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be.

Keep reading...Show less

Before she was Amira Unplugged, rapper, singer, and a Becoming a Popstar contestant on MTV, she was Amira Daughtery, a twenty-five year-old Georgian, with aspirations of becoming a lawyer. “I thought my career path was going to lead me to law because that’s the way I thought I would help people,” Amira tells xoNecole. “[But] I always came back to music.”

A music lover since childhood, Amira grew up in an artistic household where passion for music was emphasized. “My dad has always been my huge inspiration for music because he’s a musician himself and is so passionate about the history of music.” Amira’s also dealt with deafness in one ear since she was a toddler, a condition which she says only makes her more “intentional” about the music she makes, to ensure that what she hears inside her head can translate the way she wants it to for audiences.

“The loss of hearing means a person can’t experience music in the conventional way,” she says. “I’ve always responded to bigger, bolder anthemic songs because I can feel them [the vibrations] in my body, and I want to be sure my music does this for deaf/HOH people and everyone.”

A Black woman wearing a black hijab and black and gold dress stands in between two men who are both wearing black pants and colorful jackets and necklaces

Amira Unplugged and other contestants on Becoming a Popstar

Amira Unplugged / MTV

In order to lift people’s spirits at the beginning of the pandemic, Amira began posting videos on TikTok of herself singing and using sign language so her music could reach her deaf fans as well. She was surprised by how quickly she was able to amass a large audience. It was through her videos that she caught the attention of a talent scout for MTV’s new music competition show for rising TikTok singers, Becoming a Popstar. After a three-month process, Amira was one of those picked to be a contestant on the show.

Becoming a Popstar, as Amira describes, is different from other music competition shows we’ve all come to know over the years. “Well, first of all, it’s all original music. There’s not a single cover,” she says. “We have to write these songs in like a day or two and then meet with our producers, meet with our directors. Every week, we are producing a full project for people to vote on and decide if they’d listen to it on the radio.”

To make sure her deaf/HOH audiences can feel her songs, she makes sure to “add more bass, guitar, and violin in unique patterns.” She also incorporates “higher pitch sounds with like chimes, bells, and piccolo,” because, she says, they’re easier to feel. “But it’s less about the kind of instrument and more about how I arrange the pattern of the song. Everything I do is to create an atmosphere, a sensation, to make my music a multi-sensory experience.”

She says that working alongside the judges–pop stars Joe Jonas and Becky G, and choreographer Sean Bankhead – has helped expand her artistry. “Joe was really more about the vocal quality and the timber and Becky was really about the passion of [the song] and being convinced this was something you believed in,” she says. “And what was really great about [our choreographer] Sean is that obviously he’s a choreographer to the stars – Lil Nas X, Normani – but he didn’t only focus on choreo, he focused on stage presence, he focused on the overall message of the song. And I think all those critiques week to week helped us hone in on what we wanted to be saying with our next song.”

As her star rises, it’s been both her Muslim faith and her friends, whom she calls “The Glasses Gang” (“because none of us can see!”), that continue to ground her. “The Muslim and the Muslima community have really gone hard [supporting me] and all these people have come together and I truly appreciate them,” Amira says. “I have just been flooded with DMs and emails and texts from [young muslim kids] people who have just been so inspired,” she says. “People who have said they have never seen anything like this, that I embody a lot of the style that they wanted to see and that the message hit them, which is really the most important thing to me.”

A Black woman wears a long, salmon pink hijab, black outfit and pink boots, smiling down at the camera with her arm outstretched to it.

Amira Unplugged

Amira Unplugged / MTV

Throughout the show’s production, she was able to continue to uphold her faith practices with the help of the crew, such as making sure her food was halal, having time to pray, dressing modestly, and working with female choreographers. “If people can accept this, can learn, and can grow, and bring more people into the fold of this industry, then I’m making a real difference,” she says.

Though she didn’t win the competition, this is only the beginning for Amira. Whether it’s on Becoming a Popstar or her videos online, Amira has made it clear she has no plans on going anywhere but up. “I’m so excited that I’ve gotten this opportunity because this is really, truly what I think I’m meant to do.”

Today is Malcolm X’s birthday. As an icon of Black liberation movements, his words are often rallying cries and guideposts in struggle. In 2020, after the officers who executed Breonna Taylor were not charged with her murder, my timeline was flooded with people reposting Malcolm’s famous quote: “The most disrespected person in America is the Black woman. The most unprotected person in America is the Black woman. The most neglected person in America is the Black woman.”

Keep reading...Show less

As her fame continues to rise, Tiffany Haddish has remained a positive light for her fans with her infectious smile and relatable story. Since Girls Trip, fans have witnessed the comedian become a modern-day Cinderella due to the many opportunities that have come her way and the recognition she began to receive.

Keep reading...Show less
Exclusive Interviews

Exclusive: Jay Ellis Shares ‘Full-Circle’ Moment With His Parents & His Self-Care Ritual

Staying grounded is one of the actor's biggest priorities.

Latest Posts