When does it become unacceptable?

Anger boils over inside of me as Jack asked “Well did he hit you?”

“No” Emily says, surprised that he would even ask that question. Was all what she was saying not enough to walk out on her current relationship? My face was starting to hurt from the frown that had over taken my face for the past half hour, listening to Emily re-tell her story with her husband to Jack as tears rolled down her face. I couldn’t understand why Jack was even asking if her husband was hitting her? What relevance did that have to do with the pain Emily has been suffering for years with this man?

I asked him point blank “What relevance does this have? Is it not enough that He is constantly swearing at her, slamming doors all over the house, being completely impolite to any member of her family or any of her friends that enter her house, he doesn’t give her money to be able to support the house hold requirements and her baby girls requirements yet spends a ton on his friends and his entertainment, he is out partying every single night without her, he doesn’t allow her to go to bars or clubs at night without him even though he does constantly, he has caused his little girl to wake up screaming at night fearing that her father would kill her mother, he sits and does nothing in the house except talk on the phone to his buddies laughing or flipping through tv channels as she keeps running around the house fixing things, he uses his kids for his social outings to be accepted in society, he doesn’t allow her to work so she doesn’t attract the attention of the opposite sex” I take a deep breath in, calm myself down and asked calmly “So answer this Jack, what does it matter, to you, if he hits her or not?” Jack looked at me surprised as though I was asking him a question about giving birth and how he felt during it. I repeated my question to him more aggressively and he finally responded saying “Well since he does not hit her, then they can work things out. hitting her would be unacceptable in every way possible.”

Shocked out of my wits I didn’t know how to answer him back, all that rummaged through my mind was the fact that if a woman ever dared do all that to her husband she would be banished by everyone including her family, they would tell her that it is up to her to make this marriage work. Any man who went to complain about the same things would have given the green light for every human being (male or female) to reprimand the woman until she breaks down in humiliation for her actions. Yet when a woman complains about being mistreated on a daily basis the world tends to stand by his side and ask the woman to accept it as long as she is not being physically abused. She is supposed to take in his infidelity, his rudeness, his verbal condemning ways, his absence physically and financially and only be able to make a valid stand if he went out of his way and hit her.

Strange how this type of injustice is not accepted upon animals and yet upon women it is considered bad, yet not unjust. A woman is put in a position today to accept all that is done to her by a man because he has not physically abused her YET. A woman is expected to be the brains in the family, the glue that holds everything together regardless of what her mental state has become because of all the degrading ways she has been treated.  A woman has to turn a blind eye to her husband having affairs hoping that he will one day come to his senses, but when that day never comes she has to confront him and in return the society gives the excuse of him being a “Man” and men need more than one woman. She is then asked yet again to accept it and be a better wife to her husband cause she was probably the reason he went to another woman for sex. If a woman cheats on her husband she is thrown to the gutters, her kids are taken away from her, her marriage is over, her is shunned out from society with not a single word mentioned that it could have possibly been the husbands fault.

What really gets to me is this, after my talk with Emily and Jack, I found Emily agreeing with Jack, seeing his point of view, assessing the situation and wronging herself the whole time. She provoked his anger, she allowed him to neglect her and stop spending money on her and the family, it was her fault she was too busy taking care of the house and her child and her new pregnancy, of course he would go mad and naturally she thanked God that he never hit her “He is a good man that he never hit me. I would have left for sure.”

And in that ended the whole pain she had been suffering for years with her husband. I later on found out that all her girlfriends gave her a similar advice and sad as it was, women accept this upon themselves. Women will tell women to stick around in a horrible relationship, with a cheating man, with a stingy guy, with a man who has temper management issues and tell the woman it is all in her hands to make this work.

When have we ever become the weaker sex? We are able to give birth, take care of a house, go to work, socialize with the world and sleep for a maximum of six hours a night and still have the ability to do everything and more than any man could even dream of. What happened to reprimanding a man for his misconduct and behavior, who said it was ok? Who said that we were born, as women, to live this way? How come every man gets away with murder and women can’t get away with an extra hour of sleep if needed?

Women know how to build fear in other women, making them accept the unacceptable. Telling them horror stories of what life would look like if she did leave her husband “You will not be able to support yourself, you have not worked for years.” Or “What about the kids? They need a father figure” or “Live with it till your kids are old enough then leave”or “ Who will every marry a woman with children? It is too much baggage. So it is best to stay with the man who helped in procreating them.”

What women don’t understand is this “If women stood up and supported one another and did not accept to be treated in such a disturbing disregard to their humanity then men will have no choice but to stop.” As long as the world accommodates such actions and only the visual physical abuse is the allowed reason to leave a man, women will always be where they are today, and they will keep procreating more men that abuse their women, cause women don’t know how to stand up for their human rights.

If every woman keeps accepting this as a way of life, and if women will always advise women to be the abused member of the family then things will never change and women will always be spat on. Her kids will also treat her with disrespect the way their father had, and they will repeat the same pattern onto their wives in the future and every woman will again tell that woman in pain “It is ok, it is all in your hands, you’re the smarter one. Men are like children let him do his thing, and you stay the good wife, he will come around. As long as he didn’t hit you then you can fix it.”

Emilie’s story is one of the many stories I have came across in all these years of watching and listening to couples. With such sadness I have to say that I might have met one in every 30 marriages where there is a balanced relationship between man and woman. What women don’t understand is this: they are telling their daughters that it is ok to be treated this way and they are telling their sons it is ok to treat a woman this way. They think they are making life better for their children when in reality they are allowing the same patterns to continue to evolve and have no regard to how their daughters will be treated in the future or how their sons will treat women.

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Insightful Remedies

There are times we feel really good and there are times we feel really bad. We are human and that is the human condition. There are those who watch for the patterns and those who neglect the patterns. How do we detect those patterns and where do we start……

1- I truly believe that your body manifests sickness to get you to pay attention.

2- Your always thinking of what it is you need to do to, as opposed to just following your heart even if it doesn’t make sense…

3- Be brutally honest with yourself.

4- Stop conforming to what you think you need to do.

5- Listen to your body…it’s giving you an opportunity to change, to get back to your heart.

6- Life has a way of repeating the same or similar situation until we learn.  You don’t have to DO anything.  Just observe, be aware and listen, because i really believe if you’re feeling unhappy inside there’s something you’re not being honest with yourself about.

7- You might be suppressing something; like when I suppressed knowing that my ex-husband wasn’t a healthy relationship/that we weren’t meant to be) notice patterns in your life and how you’ve handled them, notice how your body has been reacting to them and see how that can help you in future decisions.

 

Boundaries of self worth

What is the purpose of our self worth if it is not to figure out where our worth is? How are we to be valued by others if we have no value for ourselves? Sadly enough the only way that we will ever learn what our worth is will always be through an experience that allows us to see it. Mine came in different packages for different aspects of my life and how I value and see myself today is completely different than how I saw myself before my experiences.

After MJ (blog story: Happily Ever After) my ex husband it took me some time to learn myself worth, I didn’t know what my boundaries were, I knew what they were for others but I was never put in a situation where I had to start my own boundary list. Not to say that I didn’t have boundaries before hand, but I have to admit they were frivolous in comparison to the ones I hold dear to my heart today. What happened through that very painful experience was that i come to the realization that I didn’t really have the “what is allowed” and “what is not allowed” lines high enough on my list. I had the basic list which contained the following:

-Respect of my time and of me

-Not to ogle women when sitting with me

-Not to use swear words in my presence

-To enjoy the things I enjoyed

-To be loved unconditionally by my man

-To have an abundance of romance

-To start from zero financially with a man be his supporting woman

-To travel the world with my man

-To have a loving relationship and family with my man

-Great communication between me and my man

Now that I look at what I just wrote, and how frivolous that list was I am not surprised that I allowed certain things to pass me by. I allowed unacceptable things to happen to me which I never thought were possible to happen to me, I mean, they happened to other people and I was the voice of reason for all those other people, but not the voice of reason for myself. In my head and in my heart I was on a different platform from everyone else and I was pleased that my list was so simple unlike the other women that were looking for money or power or even just sex in a future spouse. In my mind all I wanted was simple things, and therefore I allowed for so much to take place cause my boundary line was so low. Today my list constitutes of way more than just ten things. My list is full to the brim and there is nothing that I can accept below that line.

For example “Great communication between me and my man” has been modified to look more like this:

“To be able to talk about everything on my mind and his mind to one another with no fear of the other person feeling misunderstood. To discuss the good and the bad with an open mind and heart that each person wants to make this relationship work. To communicate our sexual preferences openly and freely with one another, with my preferences also taken into consideration not only his. For us to be able to pick up the phone at any random time to talk about something with no pre-calculation of the correct number of calls to be made. To enjoy one another’s company cause the conversations are fruitful. For him to be my best friend when I need to talk to someone he is the first one I turn to knowing I am trust in him really listening to me and providing me with what I need. Our conversation is based on respect of one another’s thoughts and ideologies. We are both concerned with one another’s personal growth and therefore that is enough proof of our love for one another.” This can go on and on, only in the communication department. I never put the line thick enough or high enough, I basically just thought that everyone communicates well together but great communication to me also included great fights. If we knew how to fight well scream and kick we were communicating…isn’t that what relationships came with? So when it would get into screaming fits or rude words I never walked off, I just stayed assuming that was part of the Great communication package. Sadly it is not, cause once the voice gets too loud, or the words get ugly when ur trying to voice an emotional pain to your partner and he is not listening or understanding your pain,that is the time to walk away from the relationship. That is when it is clear that there is a huge hole in the communication department and nothing will be able to change that no matter how many years you try to make your partner understand your pain. That very first argument, that very first voice of anger that comes creeping in at the very beginning of the relationship is a peak preview into your future with that person. Pay attention to how it is being handled, listen and watch and if you have a great boundary line already set up for yourself-respect and self-value, you will know that it is time to stand up, and walk away.

This goes for every department in a persons life, there are those who are willing to take other peoples ugly nature and there are those who refuse to have others treat them badly, be the person that refuses to be treated badly cause you love yourself too much and anyone in your life should love you the way you love yourself and nothing less than that.

Use the ugly relationships to your advantage, grow that list, help yourself be the person you want to be, give others the opportunity to treat you the way you deserve to be treated…..with nothing less than respect.

Stick to “Like”

There are many conditions that have to take permanent residence when the word “Love” is to be used. To say the word “I love you” is the easiest thing to do when you’re dating someone or dreaming of a future life with that someone.

There are conditions to support the verbal confessions of Love that people tend to use at random. To look into some one’s eyes and say the words “I love you” is so easy  to do, especially if your dating that someone or in hope of continuing a long term relationship with that someone. Love contains more power and ground than a four letter word. Love needs to have the ability to defend the one you proclaim to love, the possibility of honest confessions of true intentions, the pertaining of pleasure in providing gratification to the one you love. These are all different categories that fall under and within the words “I love you”.

I have many friends who swoon once their boyfriends or husbands tell them “…But I love you” or “….i am doing all this cause I love you”……or “ It’s cause I love you”, they erase all the actions that prove otherwise and talk themselves into believing void words that have nothing of prominence to support what they are hearing.

I have a friend who won’t stop dating a guy that never prioritizes her.  He finds ways to constantly make her think that he loves her, yet he does things to avoid spending time with her. He uses the words “I love you” to keep her lingering on. He prefers spending his holidays away from her, in different countries, yet when confronted by her, he tells her “You could have just told me this upsets you….you know I love you”. Other times when she has time to spend with him on a trip, he somehow finds a way to leave two day earlier and when she confronts him with her pain he tells her “You know how much the gym means to me, I can’t skip it, I have to go back home to be in MY gym….but you know I love you”. There are even times where they may be hanging out in the same space but he leaves without telling her he is leaving, letting her be there on her own assuming he will join her after he is done with his workout. Yet again he reels her in with void words and examples of other loving times he had with her, always with the belief that “he loves her”. Yes, my friend is stuck in a world of lies and there is nothing to help her get out and no one that she will listen to, and all this cause she believes that he “Loves” her. What she doesn’t seem to understand is that love comes with a lot more things than just a four letter word. The word “Love” was not created to be used as a Band-Aid, every time a wound occurs you put the “Love” band-Aid on it and it goes away. In her situation she needs to watch what he does and close her ears to what he says to see the dark hole she is digging for herself clearly. She has lost all herself value in believing his words in hopes that they are the reality she lives in today. He has never confessed to her his true intentions in having her in his life, and she is willing to stick around for the day in which she may understand where all this love is heading to.

Another friend keeps getting promised to have a family vacation with her husband, and every time the opportunity arises that holiday trip seems to never fall into fruition. He loves her, he says but the one thing her heart has desired for the last six years of their marriage was to take a vacation with her husband alone and sadly he has found every way possible to never make it happen. He has no money to go on vacation, yet he has the money to spend on expensive watches and large sums of money on weekend outings. He has no time off work to take a vacation, yet he is able to find the time when a trip includes his friends. With all the excuses that he has given her, never to travel with her as a family alone, he has maintained the one sentence he is gifted at saying “I love you”. When she got the courage to break free and plan a trip with her girlfriends, knowing well that the time for her to travel with her husband alone will never come, he condemn her for taking a decision to travel alone as he continued to use “I love you and this is what you do?”. My girlfriends husband is unaware of the fact that his words are starting to mean nothing to her, there are no actions to support his confessions of undying love to her. He purchases gifts of his liking for his friends to see and yet what her heart desires the most is never given to her. Love is not only words, when you truly love someone you offer them what they want as it should provide a small internal pleasure in seeing the one you love fulfilled.

Another friend dated a man who never defended her when in the presence of others. He always took everyone else’s side and never hers. When his friends would start to make fun of her in front of him, he would conspire with them and make further remarks to entertain them on her behalf. When she would feel offended and refuse to see him again he would tell her “It was only joking around, you know how much I love you”. When his parents would complain about her dress code being too simple and not lavish enough he would go up to her in a rage making fun of her outfit and telling her she is not worthy of outings with him. She would whimper in crying fits as she would gasp and say “why would you say something so cruel to me” and he would naturally tell her “It’s cause I love you and want you to be the prettiest woman around”. At one point a dear friend of his sent him a hate message about my friend, telling him to watch out and she was not worthy of him, when in reality his friend had a previous feud with my friend therefore trying to make her life a living hell. When the boyfriend knew he went along with what his friend said and instead of defending his woman, he continued befriending that friend with such love and intimacy. When she finally found out a month later she rushed at him with anger and harsh words only to hear him tell her “I didn’t want to tell you cause I love you.” How little do people care about the word “Love”? In this situation my friend was not loved at all, for if it were love then he would have defended her with all his might. He would have stopped his friend from bad mouthing her and cut all relations with him. Love defends the ones they love cause there is no one else worthy to them more than the lover they have at the time. If you can’t defend the ones you love, then you have no love to offer other than the love of pleasing others in hopes to fit in.

Before confessing Love to your partner, make sure you know all the factors that come with that word. Make sure you are up to carrying the weight of love, and if you’re not, then keep it at “like” and give “Love” a break from the wrong that has been done to it. It has turned into a manipulation strategy and lost the glory of its “grander than life” formula.

Assess the actions, for at the end words hold no meaning if they have nothing to fall back on to prove their worthiness.

Enter into Jealousy

How many times have we gotten a feeling inside and predicted it to be jealousy? A feeling that eats us up internally when our partner looks at every woman/man walking through the door, or chooses to hug someone hello instead of a polite hand shake. I am sure everyone has been or is still in a relationship where their partner decides to compliment another male/female in the presence of you, a compliment that you have either not received from your partner, or a compliment that was only dedicated to you then given to someone else with the same feelings of appreciation and glory. An internal dialogue starts to take place within you and you wonder why you are feeling so jealous?

Yes, we use “Jealous” for any hurt, agitation, or uncalled for negative emotion when our partner decides to offer extra attention to the opposite sex in which ever form that we find disrespectful to our personal feelings.

Jealous is a strong word to use for what I like to call “disrespect”. It is not that you are jealous of the person interaction with the opposite sex, it is more to do with how your paradigm of respect is evaluated in your mind. How you would do something and go about a situation at hand while still making sure that you have not, by any means, disrespected the person you are with. In doing so each person needs to understand what the boundaries of each other are, what they find respectful and what they find to be disrespectful.

I have always believed that I was a jealous person, I was told by all my boyfriends that I was, and in them assessing me the wrong way, they prided themselves in the fact that I felt so strongly about them cause I was “jealous” over them. As they would pursue the jealousy concept with me, to keep igniting their reassurance that I still had feeling for them, I would start to feel aggression growing inside, and slowly I would provoke the same emotion within them. Then the game of jealousy would start and the relationship would end in a bitter state. I would start to hurt that person back in hope of igniting the same pain I was constantly receiving from him, while he would be trying to receive loving feelings and security through provoking my jealousy.

What was really happening was not Jealousy, the reality was that I was feeling disrespected in so many ways, therefore the anger and hurt would start to grow inside. In expressing my aggression towards my partners disrespect in my presence, my partner would identify it as jealousy. A smirk and a little giggle would always go hand in hand with my verbal communication of the situation that I was uncomfortable with. Instead of being heard out properly, I was told I was jealous, making it a large part of identifying myself to the world. The truth of the matter was it was a lot simpler than that, there was no need to have anchored that particular false belief in my life for years. The truth was, I needed to be respected by a respectful person who understood how to respect themselves and their partner in the presence of others or in the presence of a conversation.

In saying all the above I need to clarify that there are basics in life for both sexes that would fall under respect and that is a polite distance from the opposite sex that is not your partner. To sit in a restaurant/club/bar facing your partner and having them check out every woman/man in the space as they neglect your emotions is of great disrespect to the person you are with. If you value someone and you have respect for them then you would not do to them what you would not allow to be done to you. Always do to others what you would like to be done to you, identify what your respect status is and its parameters. Make sure to be very open with the person your with about what you may have called today “jealousy”, explain that it is not jealousy that drives you but a lack of respect that your partner is not providing you with. Do not let the word “Jealousy” enter into your relationship, for it manifests itself in many ugly ways, allowing each party to abuse it, just to get a feeling of emotional assurance that they may be missing at the time. It is important not to allow it to control both your ability to show affection and the desired attention in the right way.

If you are still not with someone, then it is important to observe this person you are choosing to be with, does he/she respect your presence? Does he/she know his/her limits and boundaries’ with the opposite sex enough to make you feel comfortable with his/her interactions? If not, then talk openly about how yourself respect is very important and that when he/she does certain things, it makes you feel disrespected and you need to be with someone who can respect and value who he/she is with.

Take a look again at your reactions with your partner when it comes to the opposite sex. Understand where it is coming from as you look at it from a different angle. If you have no problem with him/her interacting with the opposite sex in a respectful dignified manner; then it is not jealousy, it is actually the feeling that you are not comfortable with how you are being treated. You simply feel your partner is not valuing your presence or respecting you the way you feel you deserve to be respected.

“When you go out with a guy, if he spends most of his time looking at every woman walking in and out of the door, you get angry not because you feel jealous, it’s cause you would not treat him that way, for the concept of respect, not jealousy.”

So today I have removed the embedded notion that I am a “jealous” person and have incorporated the knowledge that I am a person that values myself with great respect for who I am. I require to be respected the same way I hold great respect for the person I choose to be with.