“Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t.” –Erica Jong
I caught J.Lo’s Behind the Music the other night and while I’m not really a fan, I definitely enjoyed watching the evolution of her love life.
One part that certainly stood out was her interpretation of her relationship with Puff, Puffy, P. Diddy, Diddy (whew). She said she knew it would never last but she stayed with him anyway. That’s probably the only common ground we have.
I thought back to my last relationship. On the surface he had everything I wanted in a man. He was tall, attractive, confident, successful, stable, educated, family-oriented and spiritually grounded. It didn’t hurt that we built a great friendship to start it all off. But something was missing.
I sought the council of my closest friends, who thought I was crazy and still in love with my ex before him when I kept saying to them “something is missing.” Instead of listening to that voice inside of my head, I allowed myself to believe that it was me and my issues. So I stayed with him.
Months passed and despite my growing suspicions, I had nothing to prove my argument that something was wrong. I stayed because he had “the” package. I stayed because when something went wrong in his life, it was the right thing to do.
It took him months before he sat me down to explain he’d been cheating. He explained that much of the overtime and travelling was filled with the attention of another woman. So it made perfect sense when he came home tired. It made perfect sense that he was too overwhelmed to send flowers on major days or to arrive on time for dinner the first time he met my dad. He was wearing himself thin running around the city with “friends.”
SMH at myself because along with the woman’s intuition I had a God given gift to recognize game when I saw it but I didn’t listen to myself.
Neither did J.Lo.
What I learned from that relationship and what J.Lo seemed to have learned from her time with Puff is that the only person you owe something to is yourself. Far too often women make a sacrifice of a need, not a want, to stay with a man who doesn’t appreciate or recognize that she did it to love him.
Women will play wife, mother and home-girl to a fool who she knows doesn’t deserve it. But she’ll remain patient hoping that him or something will change.
It’s not until Shyne is popping caps in a club and we’re finger printed that the J.Lo’s of the world are like, “Wait! What the hell am I doing here?” I mean it’s not that drastic for most of us but it shouldn’t have to be.
It’s time we start seriously listening to what our wisdom tells us. Trust your gut. You were given instinct for a reason; it’s to help you survive.
It’s nice to have friends to run ideas by but at the end of the day, no one knows your truth better than you. Embrace it.
It may leave you single longer than you hoped but at least you won’t be sleeping with one eye open.
Get my drift?