Monthly Archives: June 2016

Burden by Choice

I saw a meme on Facebook a few weeks ago that I just had to post to my page. In the picture, a woman had two children holding her hands, an infant strapped to her chest who is breastfeeding and a man strapped to her back. On her head is a heavy sack that holds the possessions of her entire family as they make the trek to a new destination. The caption says, “Ladies, stop carrying the entire load; that’s not your assignment.”

So many things went through my mind as I studied this picture, like the expression on the man’s face. The woman looks older than her years and tired, one child is crying and the other looks sad. The man, however, has his eyes closed and a contented smile on his face. He rests comfortably knowing that his woman is taking the brunt of the hardships and the trials, leaving him to live his life with no worries. How dare he allow this woman to take on everything herself?

In the same breath, the caption is right. Too many women put themselves in these situations of trying to be Superwoman and taking everything on solo. There is nothing wrong with being independent but at some point you have to learn to ask for help. If you make it seem like you don’t need anyone’s assistance, and if you decline offered help, then you only have yourself to blame when you wind up weary and exhausted.

In some cases, it’s not enough to simply ask for help; you need to demand it from your partner. Demand that he help you pay the bills, take care of the children, and take care of the home. Stand up for what’s right and fair in ALL of your relationships.

Another aspect of this meme is the physical state of everyone. The crying child is wearing an ill fitted shirt while the other child is visibly malnourished and none of them are wearing shoes. But the man, with his arms on the woman’s shoulders and his legs wrapped firmly around her waist, is wearing what looks like a nice shirt and pants and loafers. When you allow a woman to take care of everything, you get it in your mind to only take care of yourself.

As a woman, you cannot do it all alone and you shouldn’t be expected to. Your boyfriend or spouse is given the title of “partner” for a reason. He is there to make the burden manageable for you both so allow him to do that.

As a man, it is your job to take care of both your wife and your children. She wouldn’t expect you to handle everything on your own so you shouldn’t expect that either. Be her helpmate in every area of the life you share together.

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Dating Tips from an Old Married Broad

When I find myself around single women lamenting about the state of their dating life, I tend to feel both awkward and guilty. I never know quite what to say and I feel like mentioning my own marriage would just seem like bragging. I tend to provide a listening ear and only insert my opinion when it is called for.

Recently, I was having drink with two girlfriends, both are single and both are mothers. The idea of dating while juggling mommyhood is extremely difficult and taxing. For both of them, they are in a state of limbo when it comes to the opposite sex. When asked what I thought about their individual situations, I realized that the advice for any woman dating in this day and age is the same whether that woman has children or not.

  1. NEVER SETTLE. Just because you have not found that man to spend your life with, does not mean you never will. All of those happily married people you know and see on the street had to go through the same dating BS that you are experiencing. None of us had it easy and trust me: it is much better to be alone than to settle for the wrong guy and be lonely in a relationship.
  2. FIGURE OUT YOUR END RESULT. Some women date just to have something to do while others date with the intention of getting married. Whatever you purpose is, make sure you are upfront with whoever you are dating about what you want. If their interests differ, it is unfair of you to expect them to change and vice versa.
  3. UNDERSTAND THAT NO RELATIONSHIP IS PERFECT. Some single women looking to get married, are in search of that perfect mate to be the perfect husband so they can begin their perfect lives. The idea of perfection is fantasy but you can, however, find the person who is perfect for you. Just be careful to be flexible, to an extent, with what you want.
  4. SELF REFLECTION IS KEY. The success or failure of a relationship is dependent on both people in a relationship. Each person shoulders some of the blame for either doing too much or not doing enough. Stop expecting the men in your lives to make all of the adjustments and do all of the compromising to make you happy.
  5. DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME. If you are in your 30s, like me, you are old enough to know what you want. If someone is not giving you what you need, don’t be afraid to cut things off before things get too deep. We are all too old to play games or to deal with a situation or a relationship that does nothing to improve our lives.
  6. IT’S OK TO LET SOMEONE ELSE HELP. Many single women are independent because they have only had themselves to take care of and look after. If and when a man comes along, that does not mean you have to stop doing for yourself. But if he offers to help, and you guys are at the point in the relationship where trust has been established, then allow him to do for you. It is not easy to release that control but when you find that one that makes you comfortable enough to do so, then do it.
  7. I never claim to have all of the answers and I know that each person’s dating experience is different. Continue to have faith that God will bring you what you need and understand that it may not be exactly what you want.
  8. UNDERSTAND THAT NO RELATIONSHIP IS PERFECT. Some single women looking to get married, are in search of that perfect mate to be the perfect husband so they can begin their perfect lives. The idea of perfection is fantasy but you can, however, find the person who is perfect for you.

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