Love is an amazingly beautiful creation, gifted by God.
Love is necessary in this world.
I feel Love is the most important and significant emotion you can feel, and it is the most important and significant thing you can share.
In The Carter’s song “Black Effect”, L’Antoinette Stines explains her take on love, stating that there are different types of love, such as love of self, love of God, love of a partner and so on. Of course I feel that each type of love is equally important in its own right…. but my favorite is romantic love – love of a significant other.
It is possibly the hardest and most difficult type of love there is.
I am a die-hard romantic. I read cheesy romance novels full of heart-breaks and “true-love” and I cry during romantic comedies. I always root for the hero or heroine willing to fight for love, willing to go through hell to see it through. This is apart of the reason that I pain for the people of the world in this day & age… I look around, I listen, and I have come to feel that the world, particularity the generations coming up under my own (1990 baby here!), has an unrealistic expectation for love.
I went into my marriage with full understanding that fights and hard time would occur. I knew that it would not be a fairy-tale (a romantic comedy maybe, but NOT a fairy-tale). People today seem to have these glamorized relationships in their minds as to what real love is.
Now, I was guilty of this at one point, so don’t think I am pointing fingers. I had an image of the man I would marry in my head- his physical appearance, how he’d feel about me, what our relationship would be like, how he would buy a small country in Europe if it put a smile on my face… I had a dream-man. The problem was, he was a dream- he wasn’t real, nor was he realistic. As my feeling for the man I actually married began to grow during the time we dated, the inconsistencies in my dream guy started becoming more and more real… he had to have flaws, and for every amazing thing about him there was a flaw lurking by that I’d been omitting from the image.
My husband was a wake up call. He is a real man. A flawed, imperfect, very real man. I realized one day, after a particularly difficult argument and then long chat with God, that I needed to be realistic about the man I was falling in love with. I needed to let go of the dreamworld I’d been consumed with and live in REALITY. Not what popular culture said we should be, but what we should actually be – us. The good, bad, ugly, funny, and taking it day by day ‘us’.
I used to wonder if I was “settling” right? Like, should I really be with someone who isn’t everything I’ve ever wanted and more??? But then I realized, am I everything he ever wanted and more???
I think the reality check for me was when I realize that my husband did not marry me because he was head-over-hills in love and could not live without me (of course I truly don’t see how he would have survived very long if I’d ever really left – I mean even now, I know he would be on the struggle bus to nowhere if I went out of town, let alone left), and he wanted to spend every moment with me because I was his moon and stars… he married me because he thought I was a good catch, and he felt he could build a great life with me. I had the qualities he desired in a wife. That hurt me… until I realized that I married him for the exact same reasons. My husband has a good heart, and he is a hardworking man. He is educated, he is God-fearing, and he comes from a good home. He makes me laugh, and he listens to me ramble. I was not head-over-hills in love with him, but he had the qualities I desired of a husband.
Don’t get me wrong, I know he loved me and I loved him… but love is an ever-growing and ever-evolving thing. Sixteen months into our marriage and I can say I love him more today than I did 6 months ago… and my love grows daily. I see changes in my husband. I see him growing as a man, and a husband, and I am proud of that. We are changing, and growing, and learning how to be husband and wife… and we have eternity to get it right.
Now, just as I learned, I know others have to learn… I mean, with time and experience comes growth, maturity and wisdom…
The concern I have is where the outlook on love seems to be heading… here are my issues:
Issue 1: “Love should not be hard”
Love is hard. Fact. It seems like the first argument or confrontation a couple has, and they are running away, like “this isn’t what this was supposed to be like”… but, isn’t it? I am not saying a knock-down, drag-out, every single night smack-down fest is okay… I am saying that on occasion, you will get irritated and frustrated by one another. On occasion, you will fight and argue and slam doors, and maybe even throw something (hopefully now with the intent to injure), but then you forgive!!! You move forward! You grow from it and you let it make you better, stronger, and wiser. To be honest, I try to avoid arguing with my husband about the same things, because if we are still arguing about something we already went over, one of us is not getting the message – one of us is not growing, and not doing (being) better (and when that happens, I let God intervene, and He ALWAYS steps right in)… but the thing is, I KNOW we will argue – we are human. If you run away from every hard situation, you will be running for the rest of your life. If you find someone who is worth it, you can’t convince yourself they aren’t worth it because they may have yelled at you in a moment of anger or frustration. Let’s be real – have you never yelled at someone in anger, or done something you probably expected/hoped/wished to be forgiven for? You HAVE. Why? Because your human, just like your significant other.
Issue 2: “Digital World”
a) That porn star is very likely NEVER, ever going to be with you, and if you meet them in real life, they may be NOTHING like you are hoping for…… b) That video vixen might be a student focused solely on getting her degree, or she might be someone who only dates men making 7 figures, either way she is not interested in your 5-figure self…… c) That young lady for paid entertainment (dancer, or other) will not fulfill your fantasies unless you pay her in advance, she likely won’t hit you up after with her girls for fun, and honestly, she probably has a husband and three kids to get home to….. d) The Adonis at the male revue also has a whole husband….. e) That girl on IG with 5K followers who only post thirst traps, only rock Gucci, and don’t allow niggas to know where she live cause she had a stalker before- she and her son live in her sister’s spare room (her sister don’t allow her to invite men over to her home), and she wears her sister’s Gucci when her sister is at work (and puts it back promptly), and her sister pays for her son to go to nursery school…. f) that fine ass frat boy in the Navy who Snap-Chat always LIT, with the nice car, chains, and his inbox stay full- he got demoted to E1, he married with two kids, and his wife buys his chains and pays his phone bill… he is not coming over because he would need to borrow that nice ass car from his wife to do so.
Fantasies are NOT reality. So why are so many people seemingly checking out of reality to live in their fantasies??? It seems like at some point in history people decided real life was not something they wanted to deal with any longer, and social media became their norm. People send hours and hours on their phones, looking for the baddest female or guy they can find, so they can create this online relationship or carry out this online fantasy about what life could be like with them, and they let reality slip away. I feel like people become consumed with they things they can do online and they become miserable in their own lives. A person will let a good thing slip through their fingers because they couldn’t put their phone down long enough to see it leaving.
Issue 3: “Normalizing the Wrong Things”
Lil Wayne says in a song that the woman he is seeing calls him God, or that to her, he is God. Oh…. okay. Well, that is not okay. Further- why is it alright to glamorize rap songs that degrade women and relationships? It’s normal now right? Why though??? It’s teaching boys (who are supposed to become men one day) that it is acceptable to screw women and have a wife, and be unfaithful, and treat women like shit, and still expect those same women to fall to their hands and knees to please and show respect to their man. Then it seems like young women enter relationships accepting that their significant other sleeps around, but she must maintain loyalty. That is not okay. This society has normalized unhealthy actions like abuse and creep-ish behavior are promoted, and IT IS NOT OKAY!
Stalking is not cute- someone following you wherever you go, sitting outside your home, coming up to your job or school, harassing your friends, popping up wherever you are, putting they hands on you (that is ABUSE)… it is odd, not cute.
Perversion is not cute- why are we allowing grown ass men and women to get away with messing around with teenagers?! Being of the legal age of consent does not mean your 27 year old behind can or should swoop in! Women in there 40’s or whatever wanting to get there groove back with a young thing, fine… can he be 21 though??? Please?!?! I am not referring to “taboo” either… your 32 year old self can date they 53 year old self, whatever…. I am referring to these 24 year old men dating 17 year old girls. Sorry, it is NOT okay, and I cannot hear a word out of a man’s mouth about what a politician or celebrity did when he has said nothing about what his homeboy is doing!
Cheating is not cute- (and I’ll be the first one to throw down to some Me & Mrs. Jones, hitting all the notes! BUT…) making a commitment to someone, be it spouse, BF/GF, committed partner, whatever…. you made a commitment to be faithful to that person, you made a commitment to one another… if you need to cheat, your heart is not where it needs to be, and you need to let that other person go. I am not referring to people with arrangements or people who truly made one mistake, and LEARNED from it… I mean habitual cheaters, people who gloat about it, people who make excuses for their behavior. I knew a man who would send group chats to his friends with photos of all the women he was cheating on his wife with, and guess what they said/did (half of them married mind you)…. NOTHING. They condoned it whether or not they understand what they did, they condoned it. Listen to me…. Your soulmate, match in love, one true love, “the one” is NOT SOMEONE ELSE’S SPOUSE! And NO, you did NOT marry the wrong person (well, unless you did it with no type of thought behind it, I mean spiritual/emotional/mental type of guidance – did you ask your mom? Best-friend? Anybody who loves you will tell you the truth)– you have no self-control, period. Do not justify your own weakness or lack of self-control with excuses about being unsure or unhappy- everyone goes through rough patches okay, you ain’t special.
I mean seriously…. what the hell is happening?
But okay…. my rant is over, and no it was not a self-righteous finger-pointing rant, because I am very far from perfect, but I am accountable (or at least I try my damnedest to be)… I hold myself accountable. I am responsible, I think about everyone involved before I act, especially God. How will God look at me? I am fair, I will give 100% of my effort to not doing something to my husband that I would be hurt about him doing to me. I am loyal, I am loyal to my husband, and I will do my best to consistently put him first and respect him. But that is just me. I ain’t perfect at all, but I do try to do right.
I will say though………………… some people still give me hope. I see some of my friends getting married and doing the right thing. I see them falling in love and going all in. I see them giving up old habits for something new, and better… I see them.
I just wish the rest of people wanted to be better.