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Is It Really Possible To Be In Love With Two People At The Same Time?

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If you're someone who only speedreads or skims and you want the bottom line of what I'm about to share, it's actually a two-fold answer as to whether you can truly be in love with two people at the same time. First, love comes in levels and secondly, it is pretty difficult to truly be in love with two individuals simultaneously. For those of you who are already sayin', "You're trippin'. I've done it before", while I know it might feel that way, just hear me out for a sec.


No matter how old you are, what relational status you currently hold or even what your values are based on/in, I'm pretty sure that, if there's one thing we all can agree on, it's the fact that love is something you learn more about as you evolve as an individual. Just think about it—the way you thought about love in your teens is very different than the way you think about love now. Different people and experiences play a direct role in that; so does how you feel about yourself as you maneuver through those situations.

Take my first love vs. the last man who I profoundly loved.

At 19, my brain hadn't even fully developed and honestly, because I was still reeling from childhood abuse, I was looking for someone to tell me what love was all about; someone who would define it for me through their actions towards me. So really, more than anything, I was "in love" so to speak with him showing me what he thought romantic love was all about because, for the most part, I had absolutely no clue. Was sitting on the phone all hours of the night love? Was singing "Weak" to one another every chance we got love? Was having sex love? Was letting him drive my car, giving him money and forgiving him for every time I found out about some random chick that he was messing with love? Was allowing him to enter in and out of my life for years to come…love?

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The last guy? Chile, there was so much praying, fasting and implementing of I Corinthians 13 (the Love Chapter) that, in hindsight, I realize that more than merely being "in love" with him, I was in love with him being a tool that taught me how to love God and myself more (when someone keeps you on your knees in prayer, you learn more about God's grace and mercy than ever!). Plus, after that particular journey? Listen here—if I don't know nothin' else, I know that I know that I know how to love a man. When you can come out of something long, revelatory and sometimes even emotionally painful and you only respect love and the Source of Love more because of it, on some level, you come to realize that it served some good. No matter how hard it was to go through—or get over.

And that's just the thing. I've been with 14 guys. 80 percent of those partners, I was really close friends with. While pondering what I know about the stages of like, love and being in love now, I believe that while I liked all of them and even loved some of them, I have been in love with four men. In some ways, I still love them (when you've been truly "in love" it doesn't die; it transforms). At times, as I was still trying to figure out who belonged where in my life, it felt as if I was in love with a couple of them simultaneously. But time and wisdom have brought me to the convicted conclusion that that is not even remotely the case.

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Here's why.

In the article "Like, Love & in Love: How to Really Know the Differences" that was published on the site earlier this year, something I shared is the reason why I believe that "in love" is ill-defined and misused a lot (which is why a lot of us can end up being so-called "in love" all by ourselves) is because of the two prepositions that come up whenever we say "I'm in love with so-and-so." Did you catch 'em? IN and WITH. As I said in the article, "The word 'in' means to be in a place, position, or type of relationship. The word 'with' means to be accompanied by." What's my point?

Something that my male friends and I discuss fairly often is the emotional resilience of a woman. While we're out here "falling in love" (I'm not a fan of that phrase; it makes me think of something that Albert Einstein once said—"Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love.") multiple times throughout our lives, men may do it three tops—and that's pushing it. They tend to have a first love, a wife (or long-term companion) and someone in between or following her. Other than that, they're good. Whenever I ask my male friends why that is the case, most of them say something along the lines of love is really serious to them, sometimes almost scary to them and so they are not open to doing it a ton of times.

It's not that they don't love love, it's that they take it more seriously than a lot of us give them credit for.

This means that since they are not out here running and rushing to be in love, it's rare that they will ever be in love with two women at once time. I mean rare like a UFO sighting! In like (to take pleasure in; find agreeable or congenial)? Sure. In lust (intense sexual desire or appetite)? Absolutely. In interest (something that concerns, involves, draws the attention of, or arouses the curiosity of a person)? Of course. But in love? The answer is simply "no".

How can I say that so confidently? Because in love is not something that should be treated casually. For a man, I venture to say that once he reaches the in love portion of the program, he's got courtship on the brain. Courtship is not to be confused with chivalry. Courtship isn't about opening doors and turning off cell phones on dates. Courtship, by true definition, is about seeing someone as a partner for life and putting the steps into place to make that happen. And no, I don't personally know any man who has done that even a handful, let alone dozens of times. Also, of the men I know who take courtship seriously, two women did not overlap either. They may "have love" for someone other than who they are in love with, but actually in love with the other chick? No.

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So, if the only way that any of us can be in love is if someone accompanies us in that type of relationship, this means that in order for any of us to be in love with two men at one time, they have to be along with us for the ride. In other words, they have to be exactly where we are mentally and emotionally. Oh, and relationally. Two men who are doing exactly that, at the same time, with one woman is highly unlikely. There's more though.

I'm pretty sure most of us have heard a variation of the quote "If ever I am just an option, don't choose me." There's not enough time or space today to get into the fact that if you're truly in love with yourself, you would never allow someone to tell you that they are in a duality with you and someone else (and if someone else is in love with themselves, they wouldn't settle for that either). But there's another reason why I'm bringing that quote up.

When I sit and reflect on the four men that I loved—that I really and truly loved—at the time when I felt as though I was in love with them, there was no confusion going on. If I had to choose anyone else on the planet, it was only one of them, period. I believe it's because when you're in love and someone is in love with you, that experience is so consuming that it's hard to even consider someone else sharing that space.

What about the times when I wondered if I was in love with more than one of them?

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Remember how I said at the top of the article that love comes in levels? My first and last love are two men whom I've loved more than just about any other human being on the planet. Both journeys lasted for several years. In fact, my first love came back into my life for the billionth and final time while I was still caught up in the last guy. Because of how much I once loved my first love, because he and I discussed where we were now and what we should do with those feelings, on the surface, it could appear as if I was in love with two men. But here's the thing—if I had to choose between him and the other guy, there really was no contest. Something being tempting doesn't mean that you're "in love". Something that you may reminisce about doesn't mean that you're "in love".

The one you would choose, above all others, no matter what? That's who you're truly in love with.

And what if you can't decide between two guys? Do yourself and them a favor and replace "in love" with "love" because that's actually where you're at. And, real talk, if you're somewhere in the headspace of "If I could create a hybrid of the two, I'd be so happy", there's a chance that you should play Outkast's jam "Prototype", take the pressure off of yourself and wait for the one who wouldn't have to compete with anyone else. Including and especially those two fellas. Because another thing about being in love is you are all in with someone and you can't do that fractionated.

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Being in love keeps you with a singular focus. It's designed to be that way.

So yeah. Whenever someone tells me that they are in love with two people, if their heads are out of the clouds enough to listen, what I'll typically suggest is they consider that what's really going on is they love two folks and they are in confusion about what to do next. How do they get out of that confusion? One way is to decide who they would choose if they had to choose (someone always has the upper hand). Another way is to discuss with both individuals how they feel about them. Because there's no point in contemplating over being in love with someone who isn't thinking about choosing to be in love with you.

Bottom line, saying that you're in love with two people may be popular but it's not really accurate.

Now that you see things from this perspective, who are you truly in love with?

Featured image by Getty Images

ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
Sign up

Featured image by Shutterstock

Mj Rodriguez has been giving us all of our lives since she emerged on our screens as the ever-so-fabbbulous Blanca Rodriguez-Evangelista in Pose, in 2018. Since, she has captured the hearts of many all over the world, from LGBTQ advocates, to everyone in between. The beloved series officially came to a heart-wrenching end, after three seasons of tackling homelessness, sex work, the rejection that the trans community deals with on a daily basis and combined it with heart and dance to captivate millions around the world weekly.

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Sometimes, when things are a little "off" when it comes to our health, there are simple steps that we can take to get ourselves back on track. For instance, did you know that around 92 percent of Americans are considered to be vitamin or mineral deficient in some way? And since there are core nutrients that all of us need in order to function properly, it's important that we're aware of what certain deficiencies are directly linked to.

Today, that is the focus. Here are eight health-related issues that, oftentimes, if we'd just add more of a vitamin or mineral into our system, we will start to feel better in no time (technically a couple of weeks but you get my drift).

1. Muscle Cramping

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Something that happens randomly to me sometimes is I'll have a muscle that cramps up, seemingly out of nowhere. Then I'll snack on a banana and start to feel better. You know why? It's because bananas are high in potassium and potassium is a nutrient that our system needs in order for our muscles to easily contract. If you sweat a lot or don't have enough fluids in your system, you can become a high candidate for being potassium deficient. As far as how much your body requires on a daily basis, it's somewhere between 3,000-4,000 mg a day. Foods that are a good source of this mineral (that is also an electrolyte) include mushrooms, zucchini, cucumbers, sweet potatoes and lentils.

2. Lip Cracking

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If your PMS is off the chain or you've been catching a lot of colds lately, it could be because you need some more Vitamin B6 in your life. However, a telling sign that this is almost definitely the case is if the corners of your lips are cracking or even if your tongue feels a bit swollen.

The main thing to keep in mind with this point is if you're noticing indications that you could stand to have more Vitamin B6, there's a pretty good chance that your system has gotten close to totally running out. And just how much does your body need of this vitamin on the daily? About 1.3 mg. Up it up to 1.5 mg if you're over the age of 50.

Foods that are loaded with Vitamin B6 are peanuts, poultry, oats, avocados and pistachios.

3. Brittle Nails

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If it seems like no matter how much pampering you do to your nails, they are brittle and breaking, that could be an indication that you are low in iron and/or Vitamin C. The reality is that just our periods alone can make us vulnerable to having lower iron levels. And just how much should you be getting into your system? A lot of healthcare professionals recommend somewhere around 14.8 mg each day. As far as the Vitamin C goes, not only can you have brittle nails when you're not getting enough of it, this is a nutrient that makes it easier for your body to absorb iron too. 75 mg per day of it is recommended (120 mg each day if you're pregnant or are breastfeeding). Foods that are high in iron include beef, dark leafy greens, quinoa, pumpkin seeds and broccoli. Foods that are a good source of Vitamin C include citrus fruits, peppers, potatoes, berries and Brussel sprouts.

4. Allergy Symptoms

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If you've got allergy symptoms that are driving you totally up the wall or you're someone who deals with asthma or eczema, these things can be so much worse for you if you are low in omega-3. Long story short, they're fatty acids that pretty much every part of our body needs from our skin and hair to our reproductive system and our heart. Matter of fact, I actually read once that if you tend to have an excessive amount of earwax, that can also be a heads up that omega-3 is lacking. As far as how much is good for you, 1.1 grams daily is enough. And as far as foods that have omega-3 in them, those would be walnuts, spinach, salmon, chia seeds and eggs.

5. Weakness

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Magnesium is both a mineral as well as an electrolyte that helps to regulate muscle and nerve functions and keep your blood sugar in balance. Well, when you don't have enough magnesium in you, it can cause you to experience extreme amounts of fatigue and weakness. A part of the reason why is because magnesium is what helps to keep your potassium levels where they should be. So, when your potassium levels are low, your muscles will not perform with as much strength as they should. Somewhere around 315 mg each day is what your system requires. Foods that are loaded with magnesium include whole grains, pumpkin seeds, halibut, bananas and dark chocolate.

6. Hair Loss

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One of the main things that all of us need in order for our hair to flourish is zinc. It's a mineral that assists with hair tissue growth and repair, fights dandruff and, it also helps your scalp to produce the sebum that it needs for your hair follicles to remain healthy. That's why it makes a lot of sense that if you're low in zinc, you could possibly suffer from some hair loss or, the very least, hair breakage. What can keep your tresses in good condition is if you consume around 8 mg of zinc daily. Foods that are high in it include Greek yogurt, cashews, black beans, sesame seeds and kale.

7. Sleepiness

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OK, if you're out here getting less than six hours a night on a consistent basis, that's probably not an indication that you are lacking a nutrient; what that probably means is you are sleep deprived.

However, if it seems like no matter how much sleep you get at night and/or naps you take during the day, you are still sleepy as all get out, what that could be telling you is that you are low in Vitamin B12. I can personally attest to this because I was sleepy a lot (and I get no less than six hours a night and sometimes a nap) until I started taking a B12 supplement. When you're low in this vitamin, it can trigger sleepiness or even sleeplessness because it plays a significant role in maintaining your energy levels.

It's kinda crazy that a lot of us are Vitamin B12 deficient when most of us only need .002 mg a day of it. Anyway, foods that are a good source of this nutrient include liver, fortified cereals, shellfish, nutritional yeast and milk alternatives (like almond or oat milk).

8. Food Cravings

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Last fall, I wrote an article about signs that you've got a sugar addiction going on (you can check it out here). One indication is if you're constantly wanting to eat sweets all of the time. Well, along these same lines, if you're experiencing food cravings, that too could mean that you've not some nutrient deficiencies happening. Sweets typically mean that you can stand to have more magnesium or tryptophan. Fatty foods mean you need more calcium. Red meat, caffeine or the desire to chew ice means you're low in iron. Salt is oftentimes connected to dehydration or an electrolyte imbalance.

Wanting to eat bread all of the time could also mean that you could use a tryptophan boost (because you are looking for something to make you feel better and bread is a comfort food. Tryptophan helps to produce the feel-good hormone serotonin so that you don't want bread as much). Foods that are high in tryptophan include tuna, cheese, turkey, milk and apples.

While I certainly wasn't able to tackle all of the nutrient deficient-related issues that exist, take this as a bit of an intro cheat sheet. Again, if you are currently experiencing any of these issues, try getting more vitamins and minerals into your system. You might be surprised just how big of an impact...a little bit of tweaking can make.

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