We all hate the break-up and as much as we can work to have some form of preventative maintenance the inevitable is that we are at some point in our life going to be broken up with. It doesn’t matter if you are Sexy Susie or Macaroni Tony at some point someone is not going to be feeling your steelo…relationships are all relative aren’t they? Many times when someone breaks-up with us or is not interested any more we contend that it was something wrong with the other person. Sometimes we don’t practice self-accountability or awareness to see what we could have done wrong in the situation (See: Do You Know Your Relationship Credit Score?“). This week I am honored to have this week Michele Grant (@onechele) of Black and Bougie who is a terrific blogger who has even won a Black Weblog Award For Best Series. I also will be guest on her Blog Talk Radio program this evening at 9:30 EST/ 8:30 CST. You can listen to the live program or the recording of it RIGHT HERE.
Author’s Note: I am not a relationship expert. But I’ve been there, done that and written the book (literally). So from time to time I share my thoughts on matters such as these. Take them in the (non-expert) spirit in which they were written. Enjoy!
At least once a week, someone (under the illusion that I am a relationship expert) sends me a lengthy email detailing a break-up and asking, “Why me?” Nine times out of ten, the answer is right there – if one just cared to see it. I don’t say this with any measure of glee. I’ve been set aside (okay kicked to the curb) a time or two myself. It’s never fun but it’s often avoidable.
Last week, I was contacted by a confused gent who had been seeing a young lady for three months. He had just received a brief, tart, “we’re done, son” text from the lady. He said he felt blindsided. Swore everything was fine as far as he was concerned. I asked him a few questions, he answered and we had an “A-ha!” moment.
If you’ve ever wondered, “What did I do wrong?” – here are some of the top infractions:
You played hard to get – How’d that work out for you? There is some truth to the “thrill of the chase” but the real truth is – folks get tired. It’s like when you played Hide and Seek as kids. There was always the one kid who hid so well that the other kids got tired of chasing him and went to get a snack instead? Yep, that’s what hard to get nets you if you play too long.
You wouldn’t open up – No, I’m not talking about physically. (That’s later in the list) When someone opens up to you, say’s cool things “I like you” and “You make me happy” and all they get is smile and a nod in return? No bueno. No one wants to open a vein and share their innermost thoughts and feelings only to have them ignored or rebuffed. And you can’t reciprocate – that’s something you should say early and often.
The “cocoa” wasn’t right – Yes, that’s my euphemism for naked mambo. Either you gave up the cocoa too quickly (giving the impression that you pass it out with double scoops), you are terrible at “stirring the cocoa”, or you held onto the cocoa like it was the Holy Grail. Who knows? Cocoa (the good, the bad and the ugly) makes people crazy. Embarrassing as it is to discuss – it’s better to set those type of expectations from jump. If you’re the kind of girl who swings from chandeliers and has leather attached to your bedposts, you might want to share that. If you’re the kind of guy who expects cocoa on full boil daily, that’s discussion worthy. Good luck. And be careful out there!
Dollar Dollar Bill$ y’all – I’m not an advocate of buying your way into someone’s heart. I’m also not an advocate of a person spending their 401(k) to turn Pookie/Peaches into Preston/Priscilla. I believe people need to be on the same page financially. If one person is okay with the other being on the come up so be it. But nothing kills a relationship quicker than shady finances. Don’t wait until your s/o has to sign for the certified letter from the IRS to tell them you have a few “issues” with your debt ratio.
You didn’t give as good as you got–This could be anything from communication, finance, romance, cocoa, disclosure, affection, or attention. If one partner is putting in 80% and the other is putting in 20% – someone is going to get weary on the journey. No one wants to feel taken advantage of and no one wants to give, give, give with no get in return. No one wants to be sucked dry. Wait. That’s not what I meant. Ya’ll know what I mean. Mind out of the gutter.
Moving on. In closing, these are but five things that can stall a relationship and they are all fixable. In the case of the gent who contacted me, he was a “play it cool” guy. This is a combination of the “hard to get” and “wouldn’t open up” issues listed above. This involves one party not wanting to let the other party know how into them they are. Yeah… not a good look. And girlie got tired of trying to guess if old girl was as committed to the relationship as she was so she bounced. He reached out and actually talked to her. They are going to give it another try. The moral to this story (as with so many others)? Communication is the key.
So tell me… those of you that have been “excused from the party.” Do you know why you were fired from the position of significant other? Was there something you could have done to stop it? Do share…
Michele Grant is a native Texan, sports fan and Mexican food enthusiast. A self-described Southern chick with a thought (or two), a keyboard and a sense of humor – she is a writer, lover of all things purple and speaker of mind. Her books, Heard it All Before andSweet Little Lies are in stores now. You can find Michele blogging atwww.blacknbougie.com, tweeting as @TheOneChele or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.