Role-play: How Women Make Themselves Unhappy in Relationships

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Once a relationship begins, her apartment has never seen day without the Swiffer, and she is the only woman who not only is aware of “Steak and BJ” day, but celebrates it with the enthusiasm as a child on Christmas morning. On top of that, she is oh so easy doing. She has noticed that you never opened the car door for her and occasionally break plans–maybe after football/basketball/baseball/foosball season is over, she tells herself, you will become more attentive.

After a few trysts together, you wake up to see half her makeup smeared in the pillow, and a clip in weave track stuck to the sheets. You drag yourself into the kitchen with sleep in your eye hoping she can still at least appeal to your stomach, but she never actually learned how to use that waffle iron proudly displayed on the counter top. You really don’t mean to, but you furl your eyebrows and mumble something when you see half the woman he met standing in front of you, the other half of her face and hair still in bed, and first time, don’t smell bacon frying. Now, the rest of this scene plays out according to what type of woman you are dealing with: she may say “sorry” and in turn make you feel like a slave driver, or she may just begin making hot grits with an ominous grin.

Nothing remains constant, no one is who they say they are or who want to be at every given moment, any snide comment in that situation can read as judgment. However, please keep in mind that you are a complete a**hole–you may be victim of bamboozlement.

It would be irresponsible to make that statement without quickly touching upon the fact that women and girls are victims too. We have been taught by society and Mattel what it means to be the perfect woman. Even in this progressive era, many women still internalize varying ideologies of what we think men want. “The ideal woman…is perhaps so far above the reality of women’s lives that women themselves will continue to struggle and struggle but never attain it” concludes Jennifer Holt, author of “The Ideal Woman”. Consequently, before you have to opportunity tell her she’s desirable without having to be a Barbie/Nicki Minaj hybrid, she already is afraid you’ll find out she’s not.

Realistically, this issue seems less likely to be uncovered over makeup and bacon, but later on the relationships dynamic. While it’s understandable and commendable for one to be on his or her best behavior in the early days of a relationship, beware the line between politeness and promoting fallacy. Some women lose sight if what they want in the hopes if coming off as agreeable and infinitely competent. When we don’t get what we are expecting in return or men are expecting more than what we deem possible, it can be frustrating; but acknowledge that he simply may not know what it is we expect. What we as women fail to account for is that if we pretend to have the kitchen talent of Betty Crocker, sports knowledge of Pam Oliver, he might actually think you like baking and watching nine hours of football on Sundays. Before we claim a man is uninterested in the things we want, we have to ask ourselves–does he even know?

Since us women cannot indefinitely hold our tongues or our flatulence, the very moment we slip, it can be a moment of vulnerability. A man’s knee jerk reaction can carry an unfair amount of weight, but the wounds women face in this respect may be self-inflicted. A healthy relationship in any form should not be a performance, but a partnership.

Khaholi Bailey is a native New Yorker who studied Creative Writing at Hunter College. She currently keeps a day job so that she can have access to a PC to use for freelance journalism gigs. Her ultimate goal is to get paid for writing about the nuances of the world without actually having to leave her apartment.

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  • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com/ Tristan

    I think people overthink relationships way too much. There’s so many unwritten rules and battles for leverage that you forget that this is supposed to be something enjoyable. The name of the game has become snagging A man not finding someone who makes you happy

    • akumaforu dark

      Well said my brother!

  • Kwazi Style

    “Consequently, before you have to opportunity tell her she’s desirable without having to be a Barbie/Nicki Minaj hybrid, she already is afraid you’ll find out she’s not.”

    This is so true for me. Even though it could be a figment of my imagination, I always feel as though men have some unattainable ideal about me and once they realize I’m not who/what they dreamed up they’ll dip out. Now whether this has happened or nah idk…. Maybe it’s because I was raised to believe “ladies dress like this and ladies behave like that” and I feel like I’m always trying to be the picture of perfection and femininity for the man (whatever that means). I dont want to constantly be “on” when I’m home and comfy….. sometimes I just want to chillax, drink juice out the bottle and scratch my tits lol but thats not ladylike or sexy…. sooo there lies my conundrum #kanyeshrug

    • akumaforu dark

      Me being a guy I wouldnt want my woman constantly “on”. Too me thats saying she cant be herself around me and what is she really like when where not together. With that being said yes I would like for my woman to be lady like or sexy if we are out but if we chilling at home relax and chill.

      • Bree

        AMEN to that akumaforu! In real life everyday is not an “on” day for anyone. People need to grow up and recognize and learn to deal with the real.

  • http://singleblackmale.org Dr. J

    Over time your looks may fade but… I think that one thing we have to remember is that everyday of your relationship you should get better and be more attractive/desirable to your partner than the day before. Love changes but it should always progress.

    So like a guy may see you without your makeup or weave but at that point you’ve done much to make yourself attractive in other ways.

    Re: The Ideal Woman

    There’s this underlying insecurity and fear that women possess about how they will be viewed by men. It’s like they’re waiting to see what the man is going to think when they see the real them. Or that they can never live up to a man’s expectations of what an ideal woman should be. However, I would counter with saying, don’t worry about that and don’t see the situation from the have-not but from the haves. You should be excited for when a man sees the real you because he’ll see that you are the Ideal Woman for him. Don’t worry about his expectations because you already plan to exceed them. In fact, men don’t struggle with this. We accept that she may find another man more physically attractive or that someone else will have more bread than us. Men mainly focus on being the best and greatest version of themselves, whoever that may be.

  • Courtney Sanders

    three words: Let it happen.
    Relationships have become arduous and tedious because the ones involved have allowed it to be. It should be fun, exciting, and refreshing even when the honeymoon phase wears off. Couples should learn to reinvent themselves and be giving and taking.

    opinionatedmale.com

  • Annetta LivinginOverflow Garre

    What are you talking about? Be happy with yourself before you go making someone else miserable.

    • langwichartz

      That sounds good and all, but we live in a world with so many “broken” people both male and female that its just wishful thinking at this point. Happiness is a relative, subjective, and abstract concept that its naive to believe that we all come whole and already assembled. The reality is that many people become their best selves through connection with others in general, and a special one to be specific. As independent as we claim to be today, we are still creatures who were created to be interdependent on one another. Not to ‘live’ but to live our best and fullest lives. Yes you can be fulfilled living single, but what is life without special people to share it with. Family is good, and kids are awesome, but without that connection from someone special who isn’t obligated to care for and love you then something will always be missing in my humble opinion, but I’m sure this new single “out for mines” society can and will refute everything I just said.

  • Blindsided

    It’s called feminism, bitches. Feminists are honest about what they want. We could give a shit about giving into the needs of a man while putting our own on the back burner. Real men, the kind who aren’t immature, insecure babies, want honest women so that they can have true relationships.

    • langwichartz

      ^^^^Ladies reference above mentality next time you wonder, “why men don’t_____anymore”, just a thought!