Stop Falling

My friends come to me for advice on their love lives as if I am some sort of expert. This has been happening since the fourth grade. I even considered a career as a relationship therapist. I think my appeal is that I listen, and that I base my answers off of other relationships people have that I can attest to–family, friend, and job relationships.

If I could say what I really wanted to say to my friends, I would say stop falling for men below your necessary and fair expectations, and stop bypassing men who don’t meet your more shallow expectations.

Whether because of good sex or desperation, a lot of my friends settle for men that they don’t fundamentally agree with or who don’t meet foundational expectations. They will choose fine men who have nothing else to offer, slick talking users who are great in bed, men who are good enough because they are getting on and don’t want to be lonely, and men who I don’t feel anyone should invest any time in at this stage in their lives.

Meanwhile, they will bypass the great guy who just looks OK is a little shorter than 6′, or has an odd laugh. Seriously. They love to say how they just aren’t feeling it, the connection isn’t there, but what they are really saying is “I don’t have time to see if I will ever like this chump cause he’s not fine and 6’2″ of special dark chocolate with abs like Tyrese.”

I have a friend who passed on a really great guy because he was shorter and wasn’t chocolate. She was perfectly happy to put him in the friend zone, until, after being friendly with him she realized he was a fantastic guy. Trouble is, some other woman realized it before she did. Then she wants to call me. What do you want me to do? I told you to jump on him then; you chose to ignore the instant friendship and ease of conversation because you didn’t feel a sizzle. Now you’re all ablaze and the new girl is this and that and should step aside for you? No, ma’am! I cannot condone you going after him with an “I had him first” attitude like someone stole him from you when you kicked the negro to the curb so hard he bounced like a rubber ball. No. I. Won’t. Do.It.

I just want to tell them to be smarter about what you base a decision that could be for the rest of your life on. I can’t make a decision like that on the way someone’s butt looks in jeans, how built they are, how great their teeth look. Health and hygiene are important, but having a pancake bottom, a thin build, or teeth that can use a slight bit of dentist magic (as long as they are clean and healthy) are not the be all and end all for me.

If you don’t treat me with respect; if you don’t have a personal relationship with God & go to church; if you have little intelligence & no common sense; if you don’t work and have no intention of working; if you are only sticking around for sex; if you are emotionally unavailable–these things are dealbreakers for me. They speak to my highest held values and principles.

Stop falling and jumping off of things when you aren’t sure there’s anything (or more to the point, anyone) to catch you, or at least be prepared to catch yourself.

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