Sunday, October 25, 2009


Yesterday, we had the pleasure of participating in the making of a documentary on love and relationships. Women and men from various backgrounds and professions came together to discuss the one thing that we all strive for but do not always agree on how to get it, maintain it, or how to conduct ourselves in it: LOVE!

The conversations were lively and provided everyone involved the opportunity to be honest about our philosophies on love and relationships, what we hope to experience in our relationships and where we sometimes feel lost. Looking back, the experience was both exhilarating and thought-provoking...

We both had many "ah ha" moments throughout the day and gained further insights on who we are and have been to the men in our lives, as well as who we want to be in relationship. While we would all agree that relationships can be challenging, in the end, we seek common ground and to love one another.

Peace and blessings to the cast and crew!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


In chapter four of "The Conversation", Mr. Hill Harper makes the observation that women sometimes fail to make the men they date feel wanted. He describes making a man feel wanted as, "...a woman[s] truly including a man in her decision-making process, asking him to weigh in on things that matter to her, and then valuing his answer." When we read this, we began to evaluate why we sometimes do not allow a man's opinion to weigh as heavily as our girlfriends' on things that are important to us.

Where did we get this? Are we fearful that if we accept a man's direction, we have relinquished control over our own lives and could be lead down the wrong path and left in a ditch? Too often, we believe that the way to make a man feel wanted is by wearing sexy shoes and lingerie, but this is just window-dressing. We tend to only accept his input when he agrees with our point-of-view and when he doesn't, we make it clear to him that we don't need his help, period. However, when it comes to our advice for him, we want to be the leader of the band! We want him to march in perfect step, never break formation, and to sound damned good while doing it!

So many of us desire the comfort of a good man, yet we find ourselves struggling with how to make a man feel wanted and how to share our lives in a meaningful way. Fear can cause us to be unwilling to allow a man who is worthy, but imperfect like ourselves, to step up in a way that honors the both of us. We would all say that we want to make a man feel wanted, but if that is truly what we desire, then we have to behave in ways that are consistent with experiencing that outcome.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


We all know what it looks like when we get caught up running extra errands for our man and picking up his slack even when he doesn't ask for it; in other words, "I got you, Boo." Often, we do this to make ourselves indispensible. We live in the story of 'this is what you do when you're in a relationship' and in doing these things, our men will recognize how good we are.

But, daytime television would not be the same without all of the Court TV shows filled with cases of "I got you, Boo" gone wrong. Funny, how all of our good intentions and selflessness go out of the window when we perceive that our actions are not appreciated. When we are in the depths of a relationship, and it looks like things may go our way, we extend ourselves to keep the good feelings going by doing, doing, doing, for our men. However, when a man does not show the proper amount of appreciation for our efforts, we judge him as being bad for taking advantage of our willingness to make life easier for him.

What would it look like if we focused primarily on what we gained from the relationship that offered us such valuable practice? Practice at becoming a better cook, a more patient person, a sensual lover, or how to better relate to and communicate with men. Yet, we often choose to play the victim and focus only on what someone has taken from us. We feel taken advantage of when the truth is; we've offered ourselves not for the sake of being generous, but to enhance our image in someone else's eyes.

Can you recall a time when you may have given of yourself in a relationship to enhance your image and now realize that you missed an opportunity to appreciate who you have become as a result of the experience?

Sunday, October 4, 2009


Last week we started reading "The Conversation" by Hill Harper. We were really excited that Mr. Harper is taking on a lot of the issues that we hope to explore in our blog. We will be periodically blogging about some of the issues that he addresses in his book and we invite you to share in some of your experiences and self-discoveries. We strongly encourage you to pick up a copy of the book and be a part of our on-line discussions!

In chapter three of "The Conversation", Mr. Harper points out the various stereotypes that black women and black men have about each other and how they threaten our possibility of creating happy relationships. It started us questioning what stereotypes we've bought into and how they have impacted our relationships. Once we began excavating our belief systems and looking at the ickiness that we each have inside, we recognized that we would have to get real with ourselves before we would be able to get beyond these negative stereotypes and press the "PERMANENT DELETE" button on our real feelings.

While I don't buy into the stereotypes that were presented in the book, I was struck by the belief that black women have an "I don't need a man" attitude, especially since so many of us are looking to be in a relationship. As I thought long and hard about that, it came to me that in many ways, my preference for a particular kind of man comes across to brothers as judgment or simply put, that I don't need a man. I then realized that I, like many women, look for the same qualities in men that I saw in my father.

My father was strong. He took care of business and never complained. I rarely saw any sign of weakness. Because of this, I realize that I have often mistaken a certain sensitivity as weakness in a man. I now see that this is not necessarily so. While I still prefer a "strong" type I am now able to better make the distinction between what it is to prefer particular traits and having judgment about men who do not exhibit their strengths in the same way that I am familiar with. Strength can be shown in many ways if I am open to seeing it.

It is sad to say, but I identified a good deal with the stereotypes Mr. Hill listed in his book about black men. Once I concluded chapter three, and I had to 'permanent[ly] delete' these beliefs, I struggled. I didn't want to because these beliefs were too deeply rooted based upon what I had experienced, seen, heard, and felt. I had always felt that I didn't like the negative things that black men did but when I got real with myself, I discovered that all of the negative things that black men do actually added up to my definition of what a black man is. I was shocked.

Combing through my experiences and past relationships, I realized that I had so many bad feelings and mistrust toward men. To escape, I began reaffirming the negative stereotypes resigning myself to "that's just the way it is" but then I dug in and challenged myself to go further, to be stronger. It's just that I had no idea that I could run those negative tapes and stereotypes over and over in my mind and not be able to separate myself from the belief that that crap was true...

By doing the work to examine the stereotypes and how they personally affected each of us, we are now more aware of how harboring these false beliefs can damage our relationships. Holding on to negative generalizations about other people does not allow us to see the lie in the thinking and it prevents us from recognizing where we need to heal ourselves. Ultimately, this negative thinking holds us back from what we most want; to love and be loved.

What negative beliefs do you have about the opposite sex? How do you think they have impacted your relationships?