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Here's How You Know He Won't Commit To You. Like, EVER.

Love & Relationships

"The ugly truth is this—when a man says that he doesn't want a relationship, the subtext in that is 'I don't want to be in a relationship with you.'"—Unknown

OK. Deep breath, y'all. Raise your hand if you've been in at least one relationship with a man who you were fully committed to, only to discover that he wasn't fully committed to you. When you stop and replay the entire dynamic in your mind, how did you miss the signs that you were "more in" than he was?


If you think that I'm asking you that to put you on blast, don't. I am the poster child for committing myself to non-committal people. If I were to go really deep into why, I think that growing up in a two-time divorced home played a role in it. Come to think of it, I know it did because whenever my late fiancé and I would argue and I would threaten to break-up, he'd be like, "Why is that always your solution to everything?!" (His parents are still married to this day.) It's because never really saw commitment modeled. What I did see are people who desperately wanted to be loved without really knowing how to get it from their partner. So, that's what the foundation of my hamster-wheel-pattern was all about.

However, after watching a video about a woman who dated a man for 10 years, then, after five months, he up and married someone else, for the sake of sparing others from having our kind of testimony, I thought it'd be a good idea to share some in-hindsight-signs. Ones that clearly depict that, no matter how much you love someone, how long you've been with someone or how hard it might be to face reality about certain things, there is a 90 percent chance that ole' boy isn't going to making a long-term commitment or marry you. Ever. Again, brace yourselves now.

Here's How To Know He Won't Commit To You

He’s Indecisive

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I don't know about you, but the men I know, when they want to do something, they find a way with no hesitation. That's why, when a man seems to be so confused, befuddled or whatever other word along those lines about whether they want to be in a relationship or not, I don't really buy it. The combination of experience and observation has taught me that if a guy doesn't know what he wants to do about a particular woman, that usually either means it's a new situation and he needs more time or he's vacillating because he's able to get enough of what he wants without having to invest more on his end—and he's just fine with that. If it's a latter, 8.5 times out of 10, all you're gonna end up doing is wasting your time. Why? Because, as hard as it might be to hear it, indecision is usually its own decision. And the decision is no.

He Keeps a Billion Excuses on Tap

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Something I've learned the hard way is a man who is ready for a commitment isn't only open to talking about it; oftentimes, he'll even bring taking things to another level all on his own. He'll ask things like "Where do you see this going?" or "Where would you like us to be a year from now?" (yes ladies, those kinds of men very much so exist). Meanwhile, guys who aren't ready for something serious and long-lasting will act like you're speaking a language they don't understand whenever you bring commitment up. They'll talk about all of the things they want to do first, how much more time they need or why they're not ready to have that kind of conversation, let alone take the kind of steps required to be in a monogamous relationship.

Popular entrepreneur Jim Rohn was really onto something when he said, "If you really want to do something, you'll find a way. If you don't, you'll find an excuse." Why we as women think this doesn't apply to commitment-phobic men is beyond me. Because it does. Absolutely so.

You See No Signs of Him Getting into “Husband Mode”

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Someone who's a nice guy or even a great date does not automatically indicate that he is husband material or even that he wants to be married (whether it's to you or at all). I know a guy who is amazing, on so many levels. But he has made it abundantly clear that the choices he makes—staying in a small place when he can afford a larger one, buying a motorcycle instead of a larger car, spending money on travel and going out to eat every day rather than saving up—are all about enjoying his single life, with no intention of preparing for a wife or children.

Meanwhile, a man who's in husband mode, he's gonna make plans to at least start the transition from being a bachelor to becoming a fiancé and then a husband. If he wants to wait, it's gonna be because he's saving up money to get a home or an engagement ring. Not only that but he's gonna mention wanting to talk to your family and/or going to premarital counseling. Plus, his world will be adjusted to make more room for you to fit comfortably into it because these are the kinds of things that a husband-to-be does.

He Makes You Feel Guilty for Even Bringing the Topic Up

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Guilt trips are the worst; especially when they come from someone who you are emotionally connected to and you feel like you can discuss any and everything with. If your man is open to talking about your family, your friends, your job or your life overall, but the moment commitment or sharing a future comes up, suddenly he's got you feeling like you're pressuring him or being semi-ridiculous for even mentioning those things, that's another flag that you shouldn't ignore.

No woman should feel bad about or embarrassed for wanting to know what a man's intentions for her are. Any guy who makes—or at least tries to make—his lady feel that way is showing indications that he's not interested in making a long-term commitment. And he wants you to feel guilty for trying to change his mind.

Meanwhile, If You Never Brought Up Marriage, It Would Never Come Up

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People tend to talk about things that they actually are interested in doing. Think about it. When your man wants to check out a new live venue, doesn't he say it? How about a restaurant on the other side of town or even a city that he wants to visit on y'all's next vacation? OK, now think about the state of your relationship with him. If you never asked, would he ever mention it? Hmm…

I have a male friend who's been married for a couple of decades now. He was really young when he got married, but he said that when he saw his now-wife for the first time, even though he didn't think he was ready for marriage, what he was also sure of was that he couldn't let her get away. So, he didn't. And he made sure that he let her know, very early on, that he had every intention in the world to make her his wife.

I'm not saying that if you've been seeing a guy for several months now and the words "exclusive" or "marriage" hasn't come up that they never will. What I am advising is you not mention them for a couple of months and see what happens. If the answer is absolutely nothing, well…yeah. You feel me?

He’s Fully Content with Things Remaining Just as They Are

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Living in the moment. If a lot of us women were really real with ourselves, we'd admit that we could do better in this area. Sometimes, we're so caught up in—if not full-on obsessed over—what's coming next that we don't enjoy what's happening now. But it's one thing for your man to be relishing in the moments of just being with you (as he should). It's another for months or even years to go by and he doesn't seem to show any desire to do anything more than what the two of you currently are doing.

How does this happen? Sometimes it's our fault because we pretty much act like the wife without actually being one (check out "Why You're Always the One Who Prepares a Man for His Wife"). Then sometimes we make the grave error of mistaking patience for stagnation (check out "The Important Reason You Shouldn't Wait to Be Chosen"). Sometimes, we're waiting for him to bring up what's next even though he's not in the relationship by himself, so it's perfectly fine—encouraged even—to speak up.

I don't know about you, but there's not one man in my life who has a problem with speaking their mind when it comes to getting what they want. So, why we want to make excuses or exceptions for them when it comes to us, that's unfortunate.

You deserve to have what you want. If you want more and he's fine with the way things are and—get this—he doesn't speak on not being fine for the foreseeable future, rather than looking for signs of whether he's going to commit to you or not, maybe you should look for ways to detach from him.

Then maybe, just maybe, you'll be the kind of woman who dated a guy for a while, ended it and then met and married the love of your life shortly after. How did it flip? Because, unlike the guy that you're currently with, "future dude" actually wanted and was ready for a commitment and dated you with that life plan in mind. Funny how that works (wink).

Featured image by Getty Images.

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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

Featured image by Shutterstock

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