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Would You Ever…

risk  When listening to the news or even just surfing the internet, you will come across some stories that seem so unbelievable that you will either be grossed out, it spurs conversation, or makes you feel really normal. So my question is, in the following situations, would you date this type/kind of person.

Would you ever date a person who…

– Cross dresses?

– Had a sex change (while you were with them)?

– Had a sex change (before you met)?

– Had a homosexual relationship/experience (if you are heterosexual)?

– Is a sexual predator?

– A drug abuser?

– A woman abuser?

– Has a sexually transmitted disease that you can’t get rid of?

– Is currently married?

– Abuses children?

Holiday in the Dumps

grinch  Is it okay to break up with your mate during the holidays? I would like to play devil’s advocate for this topic. For the most part, I believe that it would be a heart breaking thing to deal with- if they were someone special. I mean, who would want to be by themselves intentionally for the holiday season, have to worry about returning a gift (especially if it’s a nonrefundable gift), or have no other family in the general vicinity to spend the holidays with.

Some people break up before the Christmas on purpose just so they won’t have to buy a gift, which is trifling. Now don’t get me wrong, Christmas is not simply just about buying gifts (check out my last blog “The Spirit of Christmas” if you haven’t read it already), but it is the season of giving something.

There are times when maybe you should just stick it out until Christmas passes, for example, you love them a lot more than them getting on your nerves. You don’t want to spend too much time with them and a couple more days won’t kill you, but after those few days, you can then give them the boot. There is a break between Christmas and New Year’s but you have to act fast. Or if you already scheduled a trip and want to wait until after New Year’s to break up since you don’t want to lose the money that you spent on airfare, hotel arrangements, etc., then wait a couple more if it doesn’t kill you.

On the contrary, there are some instances where waiting should not be in the cards, for example, when there is abuse involved, cheating, the sight of them makes you physically ill, or any other case that’s similar. If your happiness and sanity are in jeopardy then you shouldn’t wait, even if it happens on Christmas Day. Now just like the last blog, don’t go blaming me for your breakup saying that ‘Klove said it was okay to kick you to the curb on Christmas because you were tripping.’ What I’m saying is your happiness (your children’s happiness comes first if you have any) and sanity are very important and if you don’t take that into consideration, then you are damaging your livelihood and your mental health. Please keep this in mind and choose what’s best for you.

Happy Holidays everyone. Be safe and make some good decisions:)

It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye

   This is the third and final installment of the breakup series (if you missed the other two, check out “It’s Time” and “A Done Deal”).  There are times that call for a hasty breakup such as, someone cheating (especially repeatedly or passing you a STD), stealing from you, etc. But every now and then you get those semi-tricky situations that may cause you to rethink your decision to split. Below are the top three reasons breakups can be hard to do.

1. Long history: When you are with someone for five, ten years and you haven’t walked down the isle yet, you have put in a lot of work to keep your relationship. You have probably put up with a lot already and maybe holding out for a ring. Remaining in love with your partner will keep you grounded but possibly staying in a relationship that may or may not be healthy for you.

2. Children- ‘Staying for the children’ has been an excuse that has been used since time began. Of course it’s better raising children in a two parent home, but oftentimes staying has compromised a person’s happiness and sanity.

3. Abuse- In a previous blog, “When is Enough, Enough”, I talked about relationships that involve abuse. In the beginning of the relationship, the abuser is often a charmer; buying gifts, being really sweet, doing whatever it takes to appear to be the perfect woman/man. Rarely do the gloves come off early, but when they do, you’re already sucked in. You start thinking that it’s your fault for their behavior and making excuses for them. You’re in so deep that you’re almost brainwashed, and if you leave or even attempt, there will be serious consequences.

Deciding to break up with you partner can be tough to do for some and easier for others. Whichever category you fall in, make sure that your children’s best interests (if you have some) come first, and then your happiness and best interests come next. As always, if you have another situation where breaking up is hard to do, please feel free to share.

On a totally different note, have a blessed Thanksgiving:)

It’s Time

  I am long overdue for this… here comes a three-parter. This is a topic that we can all relate to at one time or another- break ups. We’re going to start this series off with knowing when to break off a relationship. Yes, break ups are hard to do (sometimes) and a lot of times, you have to really hit that point of no return before you can totally call it quits. But there are certain situations that make breaking up simple. Below are the top eight reasons why a couple should break up (not in any particular order). Feel free to add some of your own in the comments section.

1. Disrespect: This could come in all kind of forms ranging from putting your dirty feet on a table (with or without shoes on), to cussing you out, to cheating, to humiliating you in front of people, to staying out all night or coming in whenever.

2. Abuse: This is for either you (male or female) and/or your children. You need to get out, especially when children are involved because their safety comes first. You cannot imagine what children go through when they witness abuse or are abused themselves. So if there are any victims of domestic violence with children who are reading this, if you don’t do it for yourself, please do it for your children and get out!

3. Not in love/ No purpose: I’ve been in plenty of useless relationships. I know it sounds trifling, but there was a point in my life where I needed something to do. Did those relationships last? No. Some longer than others, but was I mentally or emotionally attached? Not a chance. You get to a point where you have to grow up and treat yourself better than that. If your relationship is not leading to something, then what is the purpose (unless you and your mate do not want to get married)?

4. You don’t like who you’re with: Now granted, there may be times where you don’t like each other, but if you don’t like your mate on ANY day of the week…there’s a problem.

5. More cons than pros: When you start feeling that itch to move on from a relationship, make a pros and cons list. If that list is twenty to one, favoring the cons…there’s a problem. And if those cons aren’t fixable, keep it pushing.

6. Lack of trust: When you lose trust, there’s no love. End of story.

7. Lack of appreciation: Everyone likes to feel appreciated and what’s wrong with letting that person know? The problem is sometimes we neglect to say or better yet show our appreciation to one another then we start taking them for granted or pushing them away. It’s the pushing away that makes it easier to leave.

8. Take advantage: Everybody has a part in a relationship, but if one person is doing their share and part of yours, why should they stay? I’m a firm believer in an equal partnership and if you can’t get with that, you’ve gotta go.

When is Enough Enough?

  Everyone has their own tolerance level when it comes to relationships. Some people leave as soon as they hit a rough patch. Some people stay and weather way too many storms. And some know when enough is enough. But what about those who stay a lot longer than their shelf life? Tonight, I want to talk about a semi-sensitive subject of domestic violence. I say “semi-sensitive” because there are some of us who know someone who is or has gotten abused, is an abuser themselves or knows of an abuser, or simply has strong views on the subject.

For starters, when the topic of abuse is brought up, many people assume that there was a physical confrontation. But ‘abuse’ is much more than that. There are four main types of abuse in relationships:

1. Physical- hitting, pushing, slapping, biting, throwing objects

2. Sexual- rape, forcing foreign objects onto/into a non consenting person, underage, exploitation

3. Emotional/mental- intimidation, cause psychological trauma (ex. depression, anxiety), isolation

4. Verbal- insults, constant put-downs (alone and in front of others)/degrading

Most people say “Why doesn’t (s)he just leave them?” Or “They must like getting mistreated.” I was one of those people, and mostly still am, but I learned a little bit about the other side of the story. I had this one class in grad school- I can’t remember the name of it, but I can remember the teacher and the classroom. My professor was also a therapist and she talked off and on about this client she had who was in an abusive marriage. She worked with her for years and became frustrated with the lack of progress the client was making. One day, the client told my teacher that she might as well stay. My teacher couldn’t believe it and neither could the class. She stated that she didn’t want to leave for fear of being killed. She went on to explain that either way, he could kill her- if she stayed, he could beat her to death, or if she left, he could find her and kill her for leaving. So she reasoned that she would rather stay because she learned her husband’s moods and what pushed his buttons, and she tried to prevent whatever she could to keep him happy. For some reason, this concept stayed with me for at least seven years (and counting).

There are other motives as to why victims stay. “Because I still love him”, staying for the children, they attract abusers (each person they date abuses them one way or another), or they have been brainwashed (of course people who get abused don’t know that they’ve been brainwashed, but outsiders know). Self-blame and feelings of loss of control lead most victims to make excuses for their abusers and to stay in this type of relationship.

So if you know someone who is in an abusive relationship, encourage them to seek help, especially if children are involved. Victims have an incredible journey ahead of them by working through the feelings of inadequacy, self-blame, and shame. And most importantly, be supportive and try not to judge. Sometimes it isn’t always a ‘get up and walk out’ type of situation.