There’s Snow Excuse!

So this guy asked me out. Cool, sure. Then he tells me he lives in Bridgeport, CT after leading me to believe he lived in the same city as I do. Mmm… fine, but I’m not driving to you until I decide I like you. Mainly because you felt the hour drive wasn’t a big deal before you said anything.

Anyway, while planning our second date, (first date went pretty well… if you are my FB friend you already know the other conflicts I had with this man lol) he says “It’s supposed to snow my car don’t do well in snow”. That’s understandable, so I suggest just getting together another day. THEN he turns around and says “can you come to me… in Bridgeport?”

HELL NO!

Seriously, dude?? You don’t want to come down here because you don’t want to mess up your car, BUT I must come to you. Ehh, no! (In my Michael Kyle voice)

Then he says something about a bar he wants to show me, and me coming up there not being the reason he mentioned his car not doing well in snow. . . Sir? So what was the reason you said it?? And lead with it at that!

There was more conversation after this but you gt my point. Really though, men? Is that how it is now??

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No Church in the Wild

Is Godless the new it thing to be??

I told you all a while ago that I was giving online dating a try. And now that I’m writing this I realize that I haven’t been giving updates on it. lol sorry! I have had some really interesting experiences in the world of dating websites. REALLY interesting. However, this post isn’t really about that specifically. I’ll fill you in with the strange stories at another time. Right now this is specifically on the topic of religion in dating, or lack thereof.

Most dating sites that I’ve seen contain a section on each person’s profile where they can state their religion. There is also the option to put “non-religious” or “other”. For the most part, I haven’t been taking this section too seriously. I kinda glance over it but not really taking a mental note of what guys have chosen to put there. I’m usually more concerned about what they’ve marked as their highest level of education, smoking, drugs and if they have children. I guess I just assumed that “non-religious” means they just don’t go to church often, ya know they believe in God, but they’re not “bible-thumpers” or they usually only talk to God under breath when they’re in a sticky situation. I know a million people who have this similar relationship with God. I’d consider this non-religious, but they acknowledge a greater presence.

I moved to New York a few moths ago and I haven’t stopped dating. I was kinda anxious to see what the NY dating scene has to offer. I’ve actually been on several dates since I’ve been here. I met most of these guys the traditional way. When you meet a man in a restaurant, a bar, at the grocery store or stalking the entryway at the gym pretending to work out, wherever your preferred hunting location is, one of your first questions isn’t usually “Sooo, what’s your relationship with God?” (is it?). Well mine isn’t. And maybe that’s something that I’m doing wrongly.

Anyway, I went on this date a few weeks ago with a guy that I met online. He seemed pretty cool. Our phone conversations were nice. He was good looking, educated, a great CREATIVE job. If you know me, you know I love a man that dreams and actively pursues his goals. And I would LOVE to find a man doing all of those things and able to write me a song, spit some poetry and paint me a mural.  Yes, all of those things! At the same time. LoL! So this dude picks a really nice wine bar in Harlem as the setting for our initial date. He told me to look for the guy in button up sweater, track pants and Kangol hat. <– my response to this was “wait, are you serious??” He had a good laugh and told me not to turn my car around, he was kidding, just wearing a gray sweater. Cool, he’s funny too!

The conversation was nice, none of those awkward pauses, UNTIL we got to subject of religion. That’s were everything went south quickly! Before I go on, please don’t get me wrong thinking I’m passing judgement on this guy because of his beliefs. I’m no sacrosanct. I’m actually in the process of rebuilding my own relationship with my God. However, because I am in this process, I feel like I need someone who has SOME kind of belief in God. Actually I’ve always felt this way. And it’s never really been an issue.

I asked him “Do you believe in God?” His response was something to the effect of “well I know there has to be something out there because I know that the voice I talk to in my head isn’t myself”. <— Now this! Really, I guess I could have taken that statement several ways but I chose to give him the benefit of the doubt and not assume this man is crazy and is really just hearing voices. I guess we all have these types of dialogues in our heads, right? Fine. He believes in something, I thought. But then every statement he made on the subject after that contradicted it. He said if he were to be married and have children he’d be extremely upset if his wife were to take his children to church or even talk about God to them at all. He argues with his best friend all of the time on the subject of God. He couldn’t understand why I was saying I couldn’t stay out too late because I “had to go to church in the morning”. Asking “Why do you have to?” as if there was something wrong with the commitment I made to sing the next day at service. I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain why I feel like I have to (yes, have to) stand by my word when I give it. He made it seem as if I was saying I was bound to something that was ridiculous in his opinion. PLENTY of awkward pauses after this. Everything he said after started to sound more and more loopy, even after moving on to other topics of conversation. It just kept coming back to it. We obviously weren’t compatible for many reasons. He even said something to the effect of wanting a real laid back girl who doesn’t always have to be dressed up. That’s fine, but I’m not that girl. I’m prissy, dressy, and I don’t think laid back is a term I’d use to describe myself. Nope!

Once again, I’ll say that I’m not judging anyone for how they feel on the subject of religion. But how can you build a solid relationship when there are such major differences in your fundamental principles upon which you build your lifestyles? I feel that inside the walls of a relationship, one both parties should feel safe and free to share their feelings, fears and beliefs with one another. You shouldn’t fear accidentally or purposely broaching the subject of God and spirituality in order to avoid conflict or being mocked by your partner.

I’ve been going through my life thinking the majority of this country had some kind of religious affiliation. But since this particular date I’m noticing SO many men who have chosen to select “non-religious” on their profile. Now, I seem to be clicking away from these profiles because I’m not sure exactly what that means. And really, I don’t want to spend the time to find out. . . I’m seeing dudes with huge tattoos on their biceps of praying hands or “only God can judge me” but they aren’t religious. I don’t get it! Is religion a fashion statement, or something that dictates your manliness?

What do you all think? I am I letting one not-so-good experience get in the way of possibly making a connection with a good guy? Could my original assumption of the definition of “non-religious” actual be true for most, or should I take the words at face value from now on?

Would You Be Offended If . . .

. . . I posted my first shot at writing erotica on the blog??

I took a stab at writing something sexy after drinking a little too much wine the other night. . . Wanna read it?? LoL

I KNOW I’m Late!

Wait!! Is it too late to say Happy New Year??

Don’t ask where I’ve been. . . but I am back! I think. What’s up y’all??

Limbo is a Game I Played as a Child

This week, I’ve been going through a little thing; my own internal battle.

I’ve been dating a guy for a little over two months. I actually met him online. Go figure! My experiment worked. Actually I guess I can’t say that it “worked”, because he’s not my boyfriend yet, ::fingers crossed:: but it’s been going well in my opinion. I have tried to approach this situation differently than I’ve done in the past. I’m not necessarily changing who I am, because I really have trouble changing me.  I am definitely trying to loosen up and not be so uptight. I want to be able to relax and let things take their natural course.  But herein lies my problem.

There are only two men that I can refer to as “my ex boyfriend” since I’ve been an adult. Neither one of those relationships lasted more than 6 months.  I’m not even really sure I can count those either since they were so short. I did love them both. Or at least I was convinced I loved them when we were together. Amazingly, my longest stints with men have been outside the confines of the title “boyfriend & girlfriend”.  If you read my blog, you probably already know these facts about me. But I’m just giving a background for those of you who don’t know. I am famous for sticking it through with men who did not want to be committed to me, or anyone else for that matter. Yet, I was faithful to them because their actions told me something different from their words..

These men (two in particular) and I would spend so much time together it was almost  (almost) impossible for either of us to see anyone else. We did all of the things that couples do, but couldn’t exactly be classified as one.  I won’t get into all of the things I gave to these dudes and did for them, cause that’s not what I want to focus on for this post. The point is simply that we were essentially in a relationship without the title, each time for over a year even two years. Both of these situations just left me feeling disappointed, hurt and definitely used once I decided to leave them by the wayside, realizing that it was never going to be more than limbo.

Limbo for the purpose of this post refers to the place in between “just dating” and “relationship” (although, every interaction with anyone, friend, family, love interest is a relationship, of course but y’all understand what I mean!). It’s the confusing, scary, shaky bridge that men and women have to cross to get from one side to the other.  I picture myself in an Indiana Jones-like setting, standing with one foot in relationship land and the other still on the bridge, while I’m grasping at the hand of a Him who is just standing there perfectly comfortable 2 steps away. He’s standing there looking like he’s enjoying the view but would rather just go back to where he came from. He hears me trying to get his attention, feels me tugging for him to just take those last few steps and join me, but I’m being brushed off.

What a desperate scene! It’s the role I’ve played several times though. I don’t want to do that this time. So I asked my current suitor when we first started dating, after all the pleasantries and polite conversations if what he wanted was to just date someone or if his goal was a relationship. He said relationship.”Yes!

Here were are a couple of months in and he’s dropping lines like “why can’t we just be two people who enjoy each other’s company?” during normal conversation. He said “Go by my actions, don’t I act like I like you?” when I asked him why he said “I’m sure you can tell I like you a little bit”… brrr? Just a little bit??  Well sir, I’m confused! Your actions say you like me more than a little bit. I feel us falling into that place of limbo where he’s getting comfortable with the way things are. He spends his free time with me, he treats me well but now his words are starting to contradict his actions. Everything he does indicates that we’re headed toward more-than-just-this, but now the things he says don’t tell me that. So what do I do now, sir? Am I supposed to go by your actions like you’re telling me, or do I listen to what you’re saying and nip this shit in the bud??

In the past I’ve gone by the actions of men I cared about. I thought “hey he wants to be with me, why else would we be doing all of this?” while he was telling me “No, this isn’t want I want.” I was afraid to just let go because what if he changed his mind? What if he realizes that he doesn’t want to lose me??

Yesterday, I was explaining to my friend (signedmissyoung) about my usual predicament and what stuck with me was  “If ‘if’ was a fifth then we’d all be drunk!” ← Read it again. Let it soak in.  Seriously, I’ve gotten so drunk on “ifs” I stopped rationalizing properly. I should have been saying “Self! If he wanted to be committed to you, then he would be. Get it together and move along.”

Please don’t misunderstand; I’m not trying to rope this man into a committed situation with me after only 2 months of knowing each other! I don’t even know if I want to be his girlfriend. I just want to know that the option is there. What is the point of getting to know someone  & spending time together if one of the involved parties already knows there’s no possibility of moving forward? I guess it’s all right when you’re younger. It was less consequential when I was in college. Even right out of undergrad. I had time.  But at the stage in my life that I’m in right now — I’m not old and out of time just yet so I said “stage” not “age”—I want something that has the potential of a future.  This time around I’m paying attention to the signs. I refuse to spend too much time in limbo once again. Maybe I’ll give myself a personal marker of how long is too long to be here. After a certain, much shorter than usual period of time I’ll cut my losses and move on. This time it will be before I’m intoxicated by love and what ifs (yikes! at the thought of loving someone again).

PS. That picture at the top has nothing to do with the post. LoL, just wanted to show you guys my “transition hair”… I’ve been experimenting lately! 😉

Oh yeah, and go check out www.CocktailOur.blogspot.com to download their first podcast! They touched on a similar subject.

Still Growing

This is Part Two. . .

. . . Instead of telling my date we had to go, I did the smart thing and just turned off my phone . . .

I tried to pull into the driveway quietly at 2:30am and sneak in through the basement. I probably even turned off my headlights before pulling in. I just knew I was so slick and would slide in undetected. My parents had surely already fallen asleep anyway. But to my surprise, as soon as I opened the door I received a fist to the mouth! And luckily for me my dad was standing right behind my mother to hold her back. She definitely got a couple of more hits in though. Mad is not the word to explain the scene playing out with my mother that night!  I’m sure she was seeing red.  I was in the most trouble I’ve been in my life. I was supposed to be leaving to begin school in a few weeks and she told me I could forget about that. She wasn’t investing anything else into me so I could fuck it up. She told me to get a job and stay my ass in NY. I wasn’t going to throw away any of her hard earned money if I insisted on wasting my life running the streets. The way she was talking you would have thought I was on someone’s corner selling ass with a needle stuck in my arm.  Looking back I can see where she was coming from and it was a place of love and disappointment but I just didn’t understand then. I cried all day afraid to come out of my room trying to figure out what to do, where I could get enough money from because I needed to get out of NY and go to school. I had already been to orientation and picked my roommates and now I wasn’t even going! I needed to do something.

I called him. I told him that my mom had gone completely crazy. I had a couple hundred tucked away but I needed him to pay me back the money he owed me and help me out so I could find some way to get out of that house.  At that point he owed me close to $2,000. Where does an 18 year old get that much money to lend to someone?! My mother would have KILLED me if she knew how much I had given to some boy who was taking advantage of me. Instead of the reaction I expected: concern and reciprocity, he surprised me. This boy cursed me out and hung up on me and stopped answering my calls. I heard that same day his ex was in the car (that I basically paid for) and scratched the hell out of it, cut up his leather seats and did some other damage to it. His boy tried to tell me that she saw him while she was walking down the street and somehow managed to do all of that. Someone else told me they were in the car together. Who knows what really happened. I was enraged, hurt and I wanted to find a brick to throw at him. I drove around trying to find him. I found his car and saw the damage for myself, but he still wasn’t answering my calls. He had called me everything out of my name and now I was on my own. I had never felt so low in my life. I was just trying to figure out how I had gotten to that point? It was so unlike me, never ever would I have imagined that I’d be in such a position.

Eventually I swallowed my pride and apologized to my mother. What else could I have done? I knew I was wrong. I was in the house all day, every day, unless I was at work. She sent me off to college at the end of the summer, despite swearing I couldn’t go. Really, that’s what I needed in order to start regaining control of myself again.

Of course I still tried to call him a couple of times.  And he did start answering my calls again. I don’t even remember how our conversation went that first time, but I was away and it was starting to matter less to me what was going on in NY.  I had already let him ruin my senior year of high school. I had gotten suspended for a day because of an argument I had in the hallway with this girl over him. The obscene language I used in that public place disgusts me now. I cringe a little bit every time I remember it. I didn’t have a date to senior prom because he didn’t tell me he wasn’t going with me until the last minute and I ended up just bringing one of my girls who used to go to our school with me.  Those prom pics aren’t my favorite memory of high school like they should be. I actually don’t have much of a memory of most of that night,  really just him meeting me at the diner afterwards with my friend’s boyfriend.  Another time after one of his parties, some girl was outside threatening to cut me because I was apparently effing with her man (before we were even really “effing” lol). I’d never even seen this girl before, but apparently she was another of his girlfriends. I’d been through so much drama for this dude who obviously didn’t give a shit about me and despite all of that it took me moving to a different state to forget about him.

I got my second tattoo that fall of my freshman year. It’s a butterfly. The wings are closed because I hadn’t fully become who I wanted to be again, but I was on my way and I was transforming. It means a lot to me.

Women too often make too many sacrifices for the men they think they love. Our self-esteem, our family, our friends all become casualties of our destructive relationships. It doesn’t even make sense, but when you’re actually invested in one of these situations yourself, reason doesn’t exist. All you know is the feeling you’re hoping for. The reciprocity you’re trying to force. I would like to say this is the only time that I ever lost myself in a man, but unfortunately that’s not true. But I do believe I’ve finally learned that I’m worth so much more than some fleeting moments of tummy butterflies and occasional sweet words. I am invaluable in my natural state of being me.

Stunted Growth, Rendered Flightless… For a Time

This is Part ONE of this story…

The day before I turned 18, I got my first tattoo. This really rough graffiti-like drawing my friend did of my name. I got it tatted on the right side of my stomach. No, I did not get my name tattooed onto my body in fear of one day forgetting it. But it is definitely a constant reminder of who I was, and who I always wanted to be– me.  Back then I was headstrong and outspoken; the leader of several organizations/clubs in school. I was actively involved in my church, I sang everywhere with different choirs, and my best friend all over the state of NY.  Guys referred to me as “church girl” and none of them were really knocking down my door to date me. Everyone knew me, and I had a lot of friends, but I think it was more because I was so involved with everything that it was kind of hard not to. I wasn’t the pretty girl that all of the guys wanted to date. I guess I was the friend of those girls, rolling in the same circles but doing my own thing. I knew who I was and the plans I had for my future. Get good grades in high school, attend an HBCU for undergrad and then move onto law school immediately. Be married by 25 and have my first child at 27. That was my plan. That’s who Tiffany was supposed to be.

Around the time I got my first tattoo I was involved with this guy. He took me to get it. Got me the hook up on the price and his boy let me get it even though I was one day shy of being 18. He was only a year older than me but he seemed SO “worldly” in my 17-year-old eyes. He knew everyone, knew famous people. And I think I just felt special that he would be so closely involved with me. He changed the way I dressed, my vocabulary gained several colloquial terms, and my truck gained several thousand miles in that first year of ownership from driving him and his friends all over the state of NY. One would think that he had me dick whipped, but contrary to what everyone thought, we were just friends. We weren’t having sex,. We weren’t kissing. None of that. But that boy definitely made me believe I loved him and I needed him and that if I wasn’t with him, no one else would want me. To him, I was ugly because I didn’t have light-skin, long hair and double D’s, but I was lucky because he loved me anyway. I was his “best friend”. When I was with him I started to lose myself, becoming who I thought he wanted me to be in order to be worthy of remaining in his circle. His friends became my friends and my friends started to look at me funny. I was still doing all of the activities I’d been involved with before meeting him, but every other second of my life became consumed with his life.

I remember one time I was in the mall with him, he was supposed to be helping me to find a pair of jeans or something… because in my mind I couldn’t even buy my own clothes without a stamp approval from him.  I needed to look cool enough. Back then I had a two-way pager (remember those?). I had a small Talkabout and he had a bigger Timeport (I think?) with a color screen. I was in the dressing room and my pager went off. I read the message and it’s from him. “ Yo Jay. Dame”, he always misspells the word damn, smh “I hate walking around with Tiff. She’s so ugly! We in the mall, people think she’s my girl and shit” My heart sank. I think I just stood there for a few minutes not knowing what to do. He obviously meant to send that to his friend and accidentally sent the message to me. I finally got myself together, holding in my tears, my heart racing. I left the jeans in the dressing room and walked out. I found him and just said “let’s go”. He says “What’s wrong? You not getting the jeans?”, “ nope. Let’s just go”.  “Yo what’s wrong with you??” Then I lost it!  Well “losing it” for me back then was much different for me then than it is now. I addressed him about the page in a hushed but angry voice. I’ve never been one for public scenes. He goes off on me! Imagine that! Trying to convince me that he knew he sent it to me, and that it was a joke. I’m not a complete fool! I wasn’t buying it. Really, as I reflect on this, I don’t know why I didn’t just leave him in the mall. I drove us there. I drove us everywhere!

Every day he would make sure to tell me how opposite of beautiful I was, but also that he loved me and I know I love him too. When I cut my hair he ridiculed it because he only liked long hair… pretty much the only thing I had going for me in his eyes.  Then we started having sex. Everyone already thought we were doing it, no matter how much I disputed it. I lost myself even more. I desperately wanted to keep him.  We did it everywhere. To this day when someone asks me where the wildest place I’ve ever had sex is, my top 3 answers are still experiences I had with him. ::shaking my head::

He would borrow my car while I was at school or at work. When he picked me up the tank would be on E and it would be obvious there had been girls in my car. One day he actually had the nerve to pick me up with the chicks (yes, plural) still in my car, and his friend in the back seat with them. I noticed he was talking in vague language. Somewhere during the car ride, it became apparent to me that one of the girls was his newest “girl friend”… and she fit his description of his “type”. Why didn’t I say anything? I just shut up and sat up front listening to their light back and forth banter as he drove the 5 of us in MY car to take them home.  I have no idea why I let him disrespect me so much. Maybe I thought no one else wanted me anyway, so this is what I had to do.

I was giving him money. Sometimes he would pay me back, but usually he wouldn’t. He used to throw parties and I used to help him with that, promoting it. He was a self-proclaimed “baller”. Word, he had stacks sometimes, but he never spent any of it on me, but when he didn’t have it I was there riding for him and catching the slack when something needed to be paid. His first car, it was me who helped him with his down payment.  And when the girls were saying it wasn’t cool enough for him, I helped him get his next one a couple of months later.

About that time I started being resentful. But I never stopped being in his shadow.  I remember the night the shit started to hit the fan. It was summer time. I made a date with this dude who I knew he had some small beef with. He was chilling at our usual spot and I got dressed up for my date, and went to the spot to drop some money off for him and when he saw what I had on he asked me where I was going and with who. And I told him. Even though he was fucking around, he made me remind him whose I was. I told him I loved him and I left for my date. The dude and I went to the midnight showing of Goldmember on 42nd Street. Before we were even halfway through the movie my cell phone started going off. It was my mother telling me I needed to come home NOW. I was at the movies! She didn’t care, I had been out and coming in late too much and I needed to get my ass off the streets and come home. Really, this guy had me “losing my mind” according to my mother. I’m sure she thought I was doing drugs or something. I wasn’t acting like myself. I was out all times of night with him. So on this night when I actually wasn’t even with him, she’d had enough. Instead of telling my date we had to go, I did the smart thing and just turned off my phone.