For my friends and I the phrase "n----- ain’t shit" had become a theory for our relationships.
We thought we had heard enough stories from our mothers and aunts and experienced enough ourselves that we thought this would manifest in our own relationships eventually someday.
Last summer, I was in a “situationship” with a man that didn’t want to commit but wanted relationship privileges. As unhappy as I was, it was so hard to get away. I was reading all of the books I could that would give me advice about how to pick the right mate and be in the best situation for me.
This brought me to Don’t Waste Your Pretty by Demetria Lucas D'Oyley. After seeing Demetria on the Bravo TV show, Blood, Sweat, and Heels, I enjoyed hearing her perspective on relationships and how she seemed the most normal on the show so I decided to read her thoughts. Not long after buying her book, I found out she was having a Q&A brunch in my area and signed myself and one of my best friends up.
While hearing women all over the brunch ask questions about relationships, not settling, and trust issues. I literally felt an energy that helped me have an epiphany. In that moment I decided that I was ending the “situationship” that was igniting negative energy in my life. I turned to my friend and said, "I’m done with him."
Now of course I had said this before, but this time felt different, I felt more confident when saying it.
At the end, after thanking Demetria for sharing advice with us, I walked outside the restaurant and got the call that changed my life. A friend called and said she wanted to introduce me to her brother that afternoon. She felt like we would have a good chemistry and even if nothing romance came from it, she believed that he and I could at least be “good friends.”
Later that day, her brother and I met and we did have great chemistry and conversation. We wanted the same things and had the same ambitions. But I had experienced this before when meeting people for the first time.
How was I going to grow and make this experience with this man different?
How could I make sure that this did not crash and burn in 6 months or less like every other guy I had met?
I decided to change my thinking.
So often we hear about positive thinking with your mind will bring positive vibes from people around you and the same thing exists in love. Previously when asked how a relationship I was in was going I would say "Oh its good SO FAR", "Everything is fine FOR NOW", "He hasn’t messed up YET."
By saying these things, I was mentally preparing myself for the worst to happen. I was not preparing myself for these great things to continue to happen.
Why was I expecting something bad to happen?
Why did I not believe that everything could actually be okay?
I changed my answers to “Everything is good”, “We are doing well.” Taking away the uncertainty makes the good things going on more certain and takes away the questioning or instability of these things continuing to happen.
It also can’t just be you. You and your partner must both believe in expecting the best, speaking the best, and believing in your relationship. My boyfriend and I were talking one day about the future I said, “Well if we get married and have kids together…..”
He immediately stopped me and said “Why is there an ‘if’?”
Then I silently asked myself, Why is there an “if”? If I love this man, why I couldn’t I speak a definite, “When we get married and have kids together…” instead of my uncertain “if”. It was a fear of speaking about things that might not happen and imagining how stupid I would feel if they didn’t. But again, there was the thought that things might not happen. I was still thinking and subconsciously expecting it not to happen. I allowed myself to be so scorned by the past that I could not speak my dreams and hopes for a future with him without being afraid. Since that day, whenever speaking about the future between my boyfriend and myself, we speak of our future in the definite. We put that energy and speak those words into the air because we believe the future will happen.
[Tweet "I allowed myself to be so scorned by the past that I could not speak my dreams and hopes for the future."]
The people around you have to know not to bring that energy into your situation. Early in my relationship when speaking about my boyfriend, my mother would say “I just don’t want you to get hurt.” I politely told her that I do not spend my energy and my mental thoughts on “the potential of getting hurt.” Protecting myself from getting hurt limits the potential of my relationship. It leaves me guarded and unable to be completely naked with my partner. Your friends and family will also bring to you the idea that the worse will happen. They love you and do not want to see you hurt. They will be unaware of how bringing that energy to you can alter your mindset. Protect your mental energy and kindly inform them of the wavelength that you are on.
[Tweet "Protecting myself from getting hurt limits the potential of my relationship."]
Now I know the skeptics are still thinking, “what if?” Some probably believe “I don’t want to look stupid,” or “I don’t want to be hurt.” When life happens, we deal with it. We strategize the best way to handle something when things happen. However, why as women do we prepare and plan mentally for something that hasn’t even happened? That’s like planning a funeral when you are not on your death bed.
Has my relationship been perfect? No. But have I received the betrayal and lies I always expected from relationships? Absolutely not. This is not by chance.
For all those ladies still saying “n----- ain't sh-t,” the guys you run into will never be worth your time, because you are expecting them not to be.
Once you change your perspective, realize your worth (because that has a huge effect on what we attract), and go into relationships with a positive frame of mind, everything will work itself out.
You deserve to at least give yourself a chance at love.
How do you speak about your relationships?
Erin Marie is a writer and educator in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. Originally from Atlanta, Georgia, Erin is passionate about critiquing the issues of Black women, Black media, and relationships. A lover of books, Erin is constantly reading in order to change and evolve and to help others, especially children. To connect with her follow her on instagram at @eairon or at branded.me/erinmarie.
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