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Are You Ready To Amp Up Your Oral Sex Game? Try This.

Here are 15 (plus a bonus) ways to make oral sex...even better.

Sex

While doing my usual internet reading and researching, I happened upon two articles on the topic of oral sex; two that clearly aren't on the same page. One was entitled "Oral Sex Is Not The Measure Of A Partner". It opened up talking about when DJ Khaled stated that (sigh) he didn't go down and how, in spite of that being the shock (and disgust) that was heard around the world, no one should've cared but his wife. Not only that but oral sex should never be the be all or end all of a relationship. Eh. There's a lot to get into today so I won't expound too much. What I will say is I personally think that a lot of us rolled our eyes because he expected to receive what he was not willing to give; that it wasn't a mutual understanding. Sir Khaled shared a huge double standard and, in the process, he also came off pretty selfish and high schoolish about cunnilingus. Actually…younger than that because I used to mentor teens and chile, these teens out here…never mind.

Then I read another article that was more up my alley. "Why You Should Never Settle For A Relationship Without Oral Sex". Yeah, I'm totally with that. Not to say that I don't know some people who hate to give and/or receive oral sex. If that's you and your partner is cool with that, feel free to skip over this or forward it along to someone else. But if you're someone who is like, "Oral sex is a total non-negotiable in my relationship", so much in fact that, from where you sit, the more you can learn about it, the better, this is your lucky day.

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While I personally think that a willing and curious spirit is half of the battle when it comes to keeping your partner happy and satisfied in the oral sex arena, as with all things sexual, there are things that can be done to take things to another level. If you're ready to do that—or to teach your partner how—I've got some tips that will make you smile and would definitely make Khaled blush a few times over.

1. Do Some Reading on the Topic. From Black Women.

Black women are naturally sexy. That is a full and complete sentence. That's why, if you're a little apprehensive or self-conscious when it comes to discussing oral sex with your girls (because they tend to have some good tips), I recommend looking up some articles and podcasts from sistahs who are totally liberated when it comes to the topic.

Two that come to mind are the article "'HELLA BLOWS': AN ESSAY ABOUT SUCKING D*** – WE MUST STOP SHAMING BLACK WOMEN ABOUT ORAL SEX" (yep, it's printed in all caps) and the podcast "Listen: Eating that ass like groceries- Chatting about dining below the belt with Black Women Be Like and Guest" (love the African accents on this one). These are absolutely NSFW, but if you give them a shot, you might discover that it can be oddly comforting to hear Black women be so forthcoming. Also, it could possibly be what helps to pull you out of your shell or to try new things. Or, if you're already super-adventurous, it can give you something to think and/or laugh about. Because there's nothing like learning about or listening to sex from women who are a lot like you. Well, us.

2. Share Some Oral Fantasies

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Personally, I think that one of the biggest misconceptions about oral sex is there is only one way to do it and everyone likes it just that way.

That said, if you're someone who is shy, disinterested or even bored when it comes to how your past oral sex encounters have been, spice things up by sharing some of your fantasies with your partner.

I'm not talking about barking orders five minutes before you attempt another round of head. I mean something along the lines of getting a journal that is completely devoted to nothing but oral sex—both ways—where you both can share your innermost thoughts, desires and curiosities. Just reading the entries alone can stir things up enough to make you want to make some of those dreams come true.

3. Invest in an Oral Sex Pillow

Sometimes oral sex feels more like a chore than anything else and it's all due to one thing—neck placement. No matter how awesome the act itself may be, it's hard to enjoy anything when it's causing some discomfort, am I right? A remedy for that is to pick up an oral sex pillow. Some that get rave reviews include the Liberator Wedge Intimate Sex Positioning Pillow, the Liberator Jaz Original Wedge Pillow and the Evercharm Half Moon Pillow Adult Toy.

4. Experiment with Various “Oral Sex Positions”

When it comes to sex positions, most of us think about them in the context of intercourse. But did you know that there are some that will take oral sex to new heights, depths and climaxes? This is one of those instances where I can show you better than I can tell you, so if you'd like to get a few ideas, click here to look at literally dozens of different oral-sex-specific poses.

5. DIY a Flavored Lubricant

Whether or not you decide to use a condom or a dental dam during oral sex (because you can get STDs from fellatio and cunnilingus; don't get it twisted), it can be fun to bring some lubricant into the mix. Just make sure that it has a flavor to it that you actually like. Because a lot of brands contain all kinds of chemicals, my suggestion would be to make some of your own.

A cool recipe that I found has coconut oil and margarita flavoring in it. Another thing that you can do is purchase some cinnamon essential oil (it's naturally sweet and packs a bit of heat). However, since both of these are oil-based and oil and latex don't mix, substituting the oil with 100 percent Aloe Vera is an alternative worth considering.

6. Chew Some Mint Gum. First.

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As far as fellatio goes, for all parties involved, the more saliva (or lubrication) that's involved, the better. One way to get your juices flowing is to chew a piece of gum. The reason why I recommend one that comes in a mint flavor is it can "dull" the taste of pre-ejaculate (if that freaks you out). Plus, a minty sensation can be a pleasant cooling sensation experience for your partner.

7. Find an Atypical Location

Location, location, location. That's what they say, right? Well, another way to take oral sex to another level is by getting out of the bedroom. Oh, and totally incorporating the element of surprise. Get into the shower while your partner is washing up and getting ready for work. One or both of you kneel on the side of the couch in between favorite television programs. If you've got a garage, park your car into it and get on the hood of your vehicle. If you've got some sushi, hop on your kitchen counter to partake in a little bit of Nyotaimori (I'll let you look that one up). Get on your dryer while it's running. Find an abandoned building (at night) and go ham.

When it comes to making oral sex an unforgettable experience, creating the right ambiance will earn you some major, major points. Each and every time you intentionally decide to go beyond the borders of your bedroom.

8. Bring Some Condiments In

An ex of mine used to say that if you need to add a condiment to your meal, someone didn't cook it right. Along these same lines, while I do believe that an oral sex connoisseur shouldn't have to depend on things like honey, chocolate or maple syrup, whipped cream or ice cream in order to keep their partner climbing the walls, if you want to switch things up, bringing these into the mix certainly can't hurt.

Just make sure to use them on the genitalia and not in you as much as possible. The reason why I say that is because while the odds are low, there have been instances of women developing maggots in their vagina. Even if something that extreme doesn't happen, placing food into your vaginal canal can definitely throw off your va-jay-jay's pH balance and lead to a vaginal infection. Just something to keep in mind.

9. Keep Your Lingerie on Longer

Not too long ago, I interviewed some married couples about what they enjoy most about their sex life. Some of them raved for several minutes (good for them!), so I had to edit their responses. On the topic of oral sex, something that a husband and wife told me is there is something about a woman keeping her panties on while she's, how did Kelly Rowland put it…getting "kisses down low", that makes cunnilingus really hot. The husband's exact words were, "The tease is as fun as the actual act. If there is a foreplay to oral sex, it's leaving a pair of sexy panties on longer."

Hey, they are a decade in, so I'll totally take his word for it.

10. Talk. Listen. Rinse. Repeat.

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A few months ago, Elite Daily published a piece on why dirty talk is a fave among so many people (me included). One of the things that the article mentioned is it's a proven way to destress. But even if it's not something that you and/or yours are particularly big on, never assume that either of you can read one another's mind, even in the bedroom (or wherever y'all choose to get down).

Sex, when done right, is one of the best forms of communication that there is. So, if there's something that you want more or less of, tell your partner that. Encourage him to do the same. A lot of the people I know who could take or leave oral sex have also shared that they don't want to tell their partner why. How are they supposed to please you if you don't tell them how? (That's not a rhetorical question, by the way.)

11. Stop Treating Oral Like Mere Foreplay

Personally, I think that one of the BIGGEST—yep, I'm that serious about it—mistakes that couples make is treating oral sex like its foreplay (an appetizer) rather than "real sex" (a full meal). Now when I say that, I'm not saying that you shouldn't expect more if you want more. What I am saying is that when things are done well and right, it can definitely scratch the right itch, if you know what I mean.

That said, rather than hurrying through it so that you can get on to the next part, take clocks out of the room, put on your favorite slow jams and make it a point and purpose to just be in the moment. However long that moment lasts. Whether intercourse follows…or…not.

12. Buy an Ora 2

If you want a little bit of an extra sensation, something that a lot of women are super fond of is the Ora 2 oral sex stimulator. It fits comfortably in your hand, changes intensity based on the pressure that's applied, and it's specifically designed with your clitoris in mind.

13. Don’t Get Lazy. Don’t Be Redundant Either.

Lazy head. My male friends have talked to me about it, on more than one occasion. From what they've described, it's about as bad as teeth getting in the way (which is pretty bad). Without getting too graphic, they say it's lazy when a woman thinks she's "doing something" just because a man's penis is in her mouth. Predictable head. That is what some women have told me is their oral sex pet peeve. The same kind, the same way, every time.

We're all grown here, so no one should feel as if they should get major points just for agreeing to fellatio or cunnilingus in the first place. If your intention is not to bring your "A" game (that includes enthusiasm and creativity), every time, really…why do it?

14. Put Your Entire Body into It

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15. Praise the Performance

Mark Twain once said, "I can live for two months on a good compliment." Yep. I can't remember exactly where I read it, but I did peep a piece that said that praise is important because, not only does it boost our self-esteem, it also motivates us and gives us more energy to complete whatever tasks we're involved in.

Not to say that oral sex is a chore or anything (far from it), but just imagine how much more you can get out of your partner if you tell him how bomb the experience was rather than simply yawning, rolling over and falling asleep?

BONUS: Select the Right Condom

If you'd prefer to use a condom, one way to not make the experience to where the rubber is the focal point is to get the kind that will enhance everything. I really dig that Men's Health did an entire feature entitled "These Are the Best Condoms and Lubes to Use for Oral Sex, According to a Sex Educator", so if you need some condom referrals, I recommend starting there.

Life is short. Oral sex is good. Get some and then make it better—every time. Hopefully these tips will help you and yours to do just that.

Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:

Who Knew Oral Sex Has An Official Time Limit?

Jill Scott Is Proof That Oral Sex Can Be Empowering

6 Oral Sex Positions That'll Elevate You Even When You're On Your Knees

10 Things You Didn't Know About The Male And Female Orgasm

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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

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When Ngozi Opara Sea started Heatfree Hair almost a decade ago, curly and kinky extensions weren't the norm on the market as they seem to be today, especially if you wanted those textures in quality human hair. Beauty supply stores mainly sold synthetic curly hair, and there was a surge of renewal for women who were just beginning to embrace natural styles, taking to YouTube to experiment with new techniques and styles.

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No one is excited about paying taxes, but for the most part, they're unavoidable for the working woman. Yet, not everyone has to pay quarterly taxes. You may have to get acquainted with quarterly taxes depending on how you earn money and who signs your paychecks. Not only is it essential to know if you should pay quarterly tax payments, but you need to know what your tax liability is and the deadline to submit your taxes — unless you want the IRS visiting.

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This article is in partnership with Staples.

As a Black woman slaying in business, you're more than likely focused on the bottom line: Serving your customers and making sure the bag doesn't stop coming in. Well, there's obviously more to running a business than just making boss moves, but as the CEO or founder, you might not have the time, energy, or resources to fill in the blanks.

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In xoNecole's Our First Year series, we take an in-depth look at love and relationships between couples with an emphasis on what their first year of marriage was like.

It was a cold winter night in Chicago, more than a year ago. Your girl was scrolling through the fifty-eleven million options on Netflix to find something interesting to watch. I spotted this new show, The Circle, and have not looked away since. Produced by Studio Lambert and Motion Content Group, it premiered in January 2020 and has become my new favorite type of game show. Hosted by Michelle Buteau, The Circle is about contestants who are isolated in their own apartments and can only communicate with others via an online social media platform.

On season 2 of The Circle, the world fell in love with DeLeesa, the contestant who would eventually be crowned winner of the cash prize. She won the game by playing as a single dad named Trevor, who is actually her husband. As a true fan of the series, I figured it was only right to sit down with DeLeesa and Trevor to get the deets on how marriage has been for them IRL. So, let me take y'all back into time real quick, to the beginning of their love story.

It was 2007, and DeLeesa was starting her first day of school as a college freshman. She was getting adjusted to her new dorm and was introduced to her new resident assistant, *drum roll please* Trevor St. Agathe. They quickly became friends and Trevor helped DeLeesa find different activities around campus. After a year, they decided to take things to the next level.

Now, 14 years and two beautiful children later, the married couple have been focusing on doing whatever it takes to create the best life for their children. Since college, the power of commitment and open communication is what has kept DeLeesa and Trevor by each other's side.

One thing that we can all learn from The Circle and social media in general is that everything is not what it seems. When I connected with the couple, DeLeesa wanted to get the story straight about her and Trevor's love story. "I feel like people look at couples on social media and they think that things are perfect when that's not true. We went through stuff, too. We just figured out how to overcome it and move together as a unit."

In this installment of xoNecole's Our First Year, Deleesa and Trevor share how marriage is about work, navigating through the ups and downs, and prioritizing family. Here's their story:

How We Met

DeLeesa: I got to school early because I was starting [college] a semester late. I met him, we became friends, and I developed a little crush on him. One day, we were hanging out in his room and he just didn't want me to leave (laughs). So we were messing around for about a year. Exactly one year later, I told Trevor that I am not going to keep doing this unless he becomes my man. If he didn't make me his girl, then we were done. (Laughs)

Trevor: I tried to ride it out as long as I could (laughs). At the time, I was thinking, since I'm still in college, I shouldn't be tied down. But I knew that if I didn't make it official, she was going to leave. So, she was right, and we took it to the next level.

First Impressions

Trevor: I thought she was absolutely beautiful. She was pretty and the new girl on campus. So I knew she was going to get lots of attention. But I didn't want to be on that with her, so I continued to just be a stand-up guy. At first, it was the normal student-and-RA relationship. She would ask me what activities she could do on campus and I gave her a few suggestions. For a few days, we continued to hang out and I started to realize the chemistry we had between us.

DeLeesa: When I first met Trevor, I wasn't even thinking about going that [relationship] route with him. I was new to the school and I just wanted to be his friend. But because we shared bathrooms in the dorm, this man would just walk around in his towel sometimes. I couldn't help but notice him more after that. I just thought 'He is fine!' (Laughs) He was so nice and he never pressured me into anything, but, he knew what he was doing.

Favorite Things

DeLeesa: I love that he has unconditional love for me. I feel like that no matter what I do or no matter how mad he gets, he is still always going to be by my side for anything that I need. We have been together for a long time. Even though we had breaks in between, he has always been there for me.

Trevor: It's not just one thing for me, but I can sum it up: DeLeesa is everything that I wish I was. She is very much not afraid of what other people think and she is very determined to go after what she wants. She has that go-getter mentality and it is so attractive to me.

"DeLeesa is everything that I wish I was. She is very much not afraid of what other people think and she is very determined to go after what she wants. She has that go-getter mentality and it is so attractive to me."

Wedding Day

Trevor: On our wedding day, I was crying like a baby when I finally saw her. That is my fondest memory of that day: seeing my wife-to-be from a distance and instant water works. (Laughs)

DeLeesa: I really enjoyed our first dance. Our wedding was pretty big, and I planned the whole thing. I was very hands-on and it was hard for me to just have a moment and be present. But when we had our first dance, that was our time to just be with each other and not worry about anything else. It really hit me that we were married at that point.

The One

DeLeesa: Well, the thing with Trevor and I is that we broke up a lot. We reached nine years of being on and off. By that time, we said to each other that this would be the last time we were going to break up. We were going to try our best to do everything that we could to stay together. And if we didn't work out, we were going to go our separate ways. For me, I really wanted us to work because I did see him as my future husband and my children's father. So it was the conversation we had to not break up that was my "you are the one for me" moment.

Trevor: It was something that I always knew. Young Trevor would say, "If I had to get married, this is who I want to marry." When I knew it was time to take things more seriously with her, it was after we had that conversation. Another confirmation that DeLeesa was the one was when we had to move to Canada from New York. I thought to myself that this woman must really love me to pack up and move to another country for me. This woman trusts me so much and she is my forever.

"The thing with Trevor and I is that we broke up a lot. We reached 9 years of being on and off. By that time, we said to each other that this would be the last time we were going to break up. We were going to try our best to do everything that we could to stay together."

Biggest Fears

Trevor: The questions that popped into my head were, "Can I do it?"; "Can I be a good husband to her?"; or "Was I truly husband material?" You can't take a test for that or study to get those answers. You have to just do it, apply your morals and values, and do the best you can. What has helped me with this is continuing to reaffirm how we feel about one another—affirmations that let me know that she is happy and I am doing a good job. Marriage isn't that much different from what we have already been doing this entire time. We just wear rings.

DeLeesa: My biggest fear [is related to the fact that] I am a very independent person, [so] if I do not like something, I can be out, quick! So with me, I questioned if I could stay put and fight through the bad times within a marriage. I would question if it is worth sticking it out since this is a lifelong commitment. What has helped me get through that is reminding myself that I can still be independent within my own marriage. I can still do things on my own and still share my life with someone I really care about.

Early Challenges

DeLeesa: I feel like I have been really good at keeping my relationship with my friends balanced with my partnership with Trevor. So when we first got married, my personal challenge was me trying to juggle between being a good wife and still making time for my girls. I really didn't want to lose sight of who I was in the process of marriage.

Trevor: My work at the time forced me to travel a lot. So when you are in that honeymoon phase, it's important to have quality time together. It was hard with my job to enjoy life together as a married couple in the beginning. Yes, we have been together for a long time. But this was different. Not being around my wife as much as I wanted to was really hard for me and the both of us. Our communication started slacking and we definitely struggled during that time.

Love Lessons

Trevor: There's two lessons that I have. One lesson is that I am a husband first. I have spent a lot of time not being a husband so it can be easy for me or anyone to continue to behave that way. But my wife always has to come first, no matter what is going on in life. When you're married, you have to reinforce that. My second lesson that has helped in our marriage is making sure I do things in order to make her life easier. It can be the simplest thing, but for me, it is a huge priority.

DeLeesa: My biggest lesson is being able to learn from each other. For example, if he is doing simple things to make life easier for me, I am learning from him how to show up for him to make him happy. It can be easy to just receive everything he is putting forth, but it has to be give and take for us.

"I am a husband first. I have spent a lot of time not being a husband so it can be easy for me or anyone to continue to behave that way. But my wife always has to come first, no matter what is going on in life. When you're married, you have to reinforce that."

Common Goal

Trevor: To do everything in our power to ensure that our girls have the best possible life. Everything that we do at this point is for them. Before children, I may have moved slower working toward certain things, but there is definitely an added fire on how we approach things because of them.

DeLeesa: I agree. The number one goal is to be the best parents we can be. We want to set up generational wealth and we want them to be culturally aware. We want them to grow up and be proud of everything we have done for them.

Best Advice

DeLeesa: My advice would be don't go looking for advice, honestly. A lot of people are going to have an opinion about your life and sometimes that may not be the best for you. People can have different intentions and may give you the wrong advice. So I feel that if you need to vent, then yes, have someone to confide in. But don't take their word as facts. Try to figure out your marriage for yourself. Stick to your intuition and what you want to do, no matter if you are being judged for it.

Trevor: The things that matter are to be patient, listen close, choose to be happy, and love hard. I also think when people come to terms with the fact that marriage is work, then it is more possible for people. There are honestly more things to be happy about with the person that you marry. You have to keep all the things that you love about that person at the forefront to get you through. Once you do that, you will be fine.

Follow Deleesa and Trevor on Instagram @leesaunique and @trev_saint and their family page @itsthesaints.

Featured image via Instagram/Leesaunique

Since 2000, Black buying power has increased a whopping 114 percent. According to Business of Fashion, we brandish $1.3 trillion in annual spending power. It's also no secret that Black women move culture like no other, making us one of the largest assets to the U.S. economy. However, for some odd but obvious reason, society tends to question Black women when they level up and revel in luxury.

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