Losing Yourself

23

***** Admin Note ******
I want to welcome a guest poster to the site.  One of the rare females that made the cut. Welcome her … and we’ll see if she graces us again with her presence.

– SBM
*********************

When in the first stages of a relationship (1-6 months) there are several things to watch out for….signs that your SO is seeing someone else…signs that your SO was seeing someone else, and now has the STD to prove it…signs that your SO is on the DL (this is strictly for the ladies cuz most dudes would rejoice at the fact that their lady eats pussy enjoys the company of women)…and, the focus of this post, signs that you are losing yourself.



Losing yourself to a relationship is one of the most common and dangerous things that can affect young lovebirds.  It is defined as giving up yourself…your hobbies, your work, your friends, your fam, etc…for the sake of your new SO and your relationship.  It is a dangerous problem because it has the tendency to result in eventual complete loss of self, i.e., once Mary enters into a new relationship, with say Joseph (what can I say, I like the Bible), she no longer exists as Mary…and now instead thinks of herself exclusively as “Jacob’s woman”…she stops hanging with friends, stops attending her pottery and dance classes, doesn’t visit her parents as much, and all in all, seemingly forgets about everyone and everything else for the sake of chilling with that n*gga Joseph.

See Also:  Five Ways Men Contribute To Female Insecurity

Typically, in my experience, this ailment tends to affect women more than men.  For whatever reason, the sisters tend to give up more of themselves for their men, than vice versa.  Maybe it’s cuz of their nurturing nature, maybe it’s cuz the dick is just that good, or maybe it’s just cuz who wouldn’t rather hang with the sexy man they love rather than a bunch of cackling b’s.  However, this is not to say that men don’t fall prey to this syndrome as well….consider the following, real-life, examples, which demonstrate how this issue can affect us during out college, 20’s-30’s (aka grown and sexy), and full blow adult (aka grown and  not so sexy) years:

Example #1: College

Missy (to self):  uh oh, David’s not in class…if he misses this test he’ll fail …lemme call him.
David:  hello?
Missy:  hey David, ur missing the Calc 3 test, what’s going on?
Ho in background:  come back to bed baby…I’m thirsty…
David (to Ho): damn baby, u insatiable…here I come girl.
David (to Missy):  f the test…gotta go missy, catch u later.
Missy:  no David, no!  don’t live up to the black college stereotype…come to class!  Leave that ho alone…no!!!

Example #2:  Grown and Sexy Years
Missy (to roommate):  hey Linda, u up?  Church starts soon.
Linda:  aw girl, I can’t go…Tom’s sick
Missy (to self):  ain’t Tom a grown ass man…how u gonna let that n*gga’s cold stop u from going to church?
Missy (to Linda): I mean…how sick is he…u can still go to church can’t u?
Linda:  naw girl, he wants me here with him…I’ll just go next Sunday
Missy:  ok…I’ll pray for your sprung ass hope he feels better

See Also:  5 Questions To Lead You To Happiness In Love

Example #3:  Grown and Not So Sexy Years
Missy: hey gramma, how u doing?
Missy’s Grandma:  I’m alright…y r u calling me?  It’s 5:59, u know I gotta keep the line open from 6-9 in case Mr. Jones calls
Missy:  I know…but I mean damn grandma, I ain’t heard from you in months…u missed my birthday…can we talk? How’s ur hip feeling?
Missy’s Grandma:  b*…stop holding my phone up…u grown…holla

Ok, so the last example was completely fictitious, but hey, it could happen.

Point is that the “losing yourself” syndrome has the capability to affect all ages…so the question is: what to do about it? As hard as it may be, the only way to beat this syndrome (and I know it’s hard) is to resist the urge to fulfill it…by any means necessary, i.e., even though you want to spend 24/7/365 laid up with your new mate…don’t!  Keep your commitments, chill with ur friends, go to church, work out…shoot, sit at home and do nothing but watch For the Love of Ray J for 4 hours!…whatever you gotta do so as to not spend all ur waking moments with ur new SO

In my own relationship, this often means that I not only keep my existing commitments (church, Bible study, work, hanging with friends, cleaning, mentoring, volunteering, working out, etc.) but it also means that I purposefully find ish to do just so that n*gga don’t think that he got it like that, I keep busy doing and don’t lose my all my “me-ness” to the new “we-ness”.  Now don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing bad about shifting your priorities a bit for your new SO…but just make sure it doesn’t go to the extreme and mess up your life…i.e. you’re so up under that him/her that you…fail a semester, miss church for weeks, or don’t see ur family for months. Don’t lose yourself!  Your new mate should be a compliment to your life, not a replacement!

See Also:  Single Black Mail Episode 4: Minute-Man

In closing, in the words of the Sarah McLachlan (yes, I’m a yt girl at heart): “Hold on…Hold on to yourself.”  Don’t give up too much of urself for some dude/b that’s gonna dump in 4 months anyway….what about y’all? Do you have examples of times when you haven’t held on to urselves? (I’m not talking about masturbation here, get ur mind out the gutter) If so, share!

– Lisa Marie

Comment(23)

  1. ***hand claps for Lisa Marie and her first post***

    I don't have any examples of this although right now, if one was on the outside looking in, they'd prolly think I was losing myself.

    I'm in a long distance relationship so I do things I wouldn't normally do. We're always texting, chatting, or on the phone. I have broken one engagement, but this is because he wanted to take me home to meet he family.

    Our plans together trump other things that I may consider menial.. and again, this is bc of the distance. I feel like i must work extra hard to make this work.

  2. Good topic. I've been a witness to a few of my friends losing themselves in their relationship, and its not pretty. I've been guilty of it myself a time or two, hey, it happens. You meet someone, you click, you like each other and its only natural that you want to spend time together. My remedy is to stay committed to the schedule/life I had before I met him. I'm still going to yoga class, meeting my dinner group, and just integrating him into all the other stuff I had going on. That helps keep you from spending every moment that you aren't at work with each other, which can get old very quickly.

    BTW, am I the only person who noticed the transition from Joseph to Jacob? Was that intentional or a typo?

  3. @Jubilance – yeah, I noticed that too. Maybe Mary had her mind on 2 guys….

    I would say that in general I agree. No need to completely change yourself or your schedule – by all means leave that bamma at home sometimes. But for a solid relationship you have to be willing to make some changes. Maybe cut out something from the list of 5 different things you do outside of work. There are only 24 hours in a day, and on average about 17 of them are spent working and sleeping. Something has to give, and your friends should understand as long as you aren't totally flaky or MIA. How can a (good) man be with you if you make little or no room in your life for him? I think that those initial months should be spent still living your life, but also finding those things that you and him enjoy together.

    Great post Lisa Marie!

  4. Relationships are give and take, comprismising is part of the deal for a good relationship…..

    I think its a big mistake to totally lose your identity…..
    You need to keep some parts of yourself for yourself.
    Having separate interest etc keeps you interesting to your partner and well rounded as a person. Becoming too wrapped up and cacooned in a person/reationship is very unhealthy…..even in a marriage, even tho you all function as a unit, its still very good to have some "you" time…….

  5. This is an excellent post. Very well-written, etc. Lisa Marie gets the Slim seal of approval.

    I like being around what makes me feel good/positive. I can be around the SO all the time and it doesn't really bother me. Granted, I do agree that they should be able to function independently of each other and maintain a balance so that they don't body one another in the not so pleasant way.

  6. Great post! I really pride myself on being a well-rounded individual, and that means working for balance in all areas. I think a lot of the losing yourself can be attributed to desperation, i.e. I never thought I would really get a man so now that I have one I won't let him live. This is so unattractive to me, in a man or a woman. Guys always tell me that they like that my life is not ALL about them. They know they can go play basketball with the homies and I won't be begging to come along or texting him every 5 minutes asking when he is going to come home.

    Don't get me wrong you definitely have to make "we" time and romantic relationships are a priority. However, if one person completely dissolves into the other person's life, there is no "we". There is just a he and a shadow.

  7. lol…I just posted on my blog about a girlfriend of mine renouncing going out. Saying her man said "you have till the end of the month to get it together"

    WTF…..

    I once tried to stop being me (very social, drinker, outgoing, likes to go out) for my last dude, it didn't work and I was miserable.

    I also did it for my marriage. Shunned family, changed who I was and what not..was miserable then too.

    I was told by 2 good friends 2 sayings

    1. Dont make yourself miserable to make him happy

    2. When you give your life up to be with someone, they get 2 lives and you have none.

    Women, we are famous for this. WHY do we have to stop being US? Why is it not "ladylike" to want to go out and enjoy yourself sans man and have a good time..

    No one should neglect their SO for hanging out (my ex's problem) but don't neglect your friends for you SO, cause when spit hits the fan, your friends and fam are the ones STILL THERE. Remember that. Dont take them for granted ( I learned the hard way)

    Love yourself first, if you cant accept you the way you are, then you shouldn't be with him

  8. This is very interesting. I dont think has happened to me because we're interested in alot of different things. She does alot of things that I dont mind hearing about but if I was forced to partake in, I might be highly upset and I'm sure the same goes for her. It does keep things interesting and it kind of makes u happy to see each other

  9. Standing O for Miss Lisa Marie!

    Most lovely post. I agree with all of that. Losing yourself in the relationship can not only be a detriment to your well-being, but also if you lose so much of yourself then when you break-up (which may be bound to happen if you're stuck on your man like a fly to flypaper…he'll feel smothered)you won't have nothing left. It's not healthy for your SO to be your everything because if you lose him, then what do you have left? Sad.

    Also you might have raised a great topic with this one:

    "…signs that your SO is on the DL (this is strictly for the ladies cuz most dudes would rejoice at the fact that their lady eats pussy enjoys the company of women)…"

    I'd truly be interested in SBM's (and the male regulars in this joint) take on this. I've seen more men shrug and say that it's coo if a woman cheats on him with another woman because it turns them on, but on the rare occasion, it hurts them just as much because regardless of the gender, it's someone other than them. Are there more men out there that feel the latter or is it really a rare occurrence?

  10. Britt

    I agree, it comes with desperation

    I asked ole girl does she want to stop going out, she admitted she doesn't, but she is going to just chill with him

    WTF..Would HE stop doing something he loved, I doubt it…

    Someone responded on the FB, "Girl, he may be the one, dont listen to other women cause they gon be singing all the single ladies"

    Like being single is a curse 😐

    That type of mentality some women posseses (I HAVE TO HAVE A MAAAAAAAAAN , GOTTA DO WHAT I GOTTA DO TO KEEP MY MAAAAAAAAN)..makes me sick, even more so cause I was one of them

  11. "Like being single is a curse
    That type of mentality some women posseses (I HAVE TO HAVE A MAAAAAAAAAN , GOTTA DO WHAT I GOTTA DO TO KEEP MY MAAAAAAAAN).."

    I agree… I've been told before, "at least I have a man…." or you just dont' understand and blah blah blah. Understandably, you have to compromise some things to make things work, but if it is something that u truly like doing, I don't see the point.

  12. Right Nicki

    WTF @ "at least I have a man"…BWAHAHAHAHA…like seriously…SERIOUSLY…REALLY THATS HOW YOU FEEL. No one defines you BUT YOU, dont let a man do it. He should love you as you are. Otherwise you gon be miserable.

    The rebuttal is always "but you gon be miserable by yourself". Whats wrong with just you being with you? Why can't you find a companion who accepts you and enjoys the same things you do? Why you gotta settle for the sake of not being alone?

    If he met you at the poetry slam, how he gon say stop going cause too many ninjas there hollering

    if he met you swinging from the pole at the club, how he gon say stop going

    if he met you rollerskating at skate palace every thursday, how he gon say you got till the end of the month to get that out your system

    wtf..we not MARRIED or ENGAGED, im not PREGNANT..eff outta here.

    You take me as I am or have nothing at ALL (cc mary j. blige)

  13. I think especially in this area, men are accustomed to women being desperate. The ratio is too high for women to men, and men know that there are slim pickings of them. So they feel they have a "right" to demand what they want of their woman because they know if they leave them, they'll have the single disease..and no woman in DC wants to be single lol

  14. My apologies, this is long winded as a mutha….

    Hiding your misery behind a phrase like, "at least I HAVE a man!" is some of the weakest bullshiggity ever uttered. What bigger sign of misery could there be?

    Buuuuut, when I speak to the women who are married, or happy and on their way to marriage – they ALL had to make a CHOICE to spend time with their man. It wasn't a decision to diss their friends or lose themselves, it was a choice to focus some of their attention on someone who was on the same page as them. And in a lot of cases this is what seperates us ladies post college. Slowly but surely women get in serious relationships and drop out of the sister circle. These women had to make some compromises to snag and keep their mate. And the ones who are left tend to hide their own flaws behind their independence. I've seen it with my own eyes – nobody wants to be the "last woman standing" after all your girls get hitched. It's just not a good look, and the older you get with this thinking the less attractive you become to men, no matter how much you've developed yourself professionally and socially. It makes you brittle, and – dare I say (ok, type) it – bitter.

    One of the first signs we get from a man that he is truly feeling us is his willingness to MAKE time for us and adjust his schedule to be with us. Why is it so hard to contemplate reciprocating? I understand keeping the chase hot and your life intact, but some of y'all are taking up new hobbies just to have something to do so you won't be too "available"! That ish is crazy.

    I won't even go on ole dude who said, "you have a month to get it together." All I can say is, "Run, girl – run!" I think Future Controlling Men of America just sent that bamma a membership invite.

    That is all,

    Anna "wondering when I replaced Betty Friedan with Amy Holmes" Nimous

  15. I love this post. It hit so close to home esp because I can think of myself going through the absorbtion of my newest relationship. All of your examples are on point. I've been reading SBM for some time now and he always has me cracking up at work. lol.
    I just love that fact that you hit the nail on the head because it really gave me the opportunity to reflect on my recent behavior and make some changes before I fall into that hole that's almost impossible to crawl out of.
    I've seen too many people go there and totally isolate themselves to the point that when the relationship ENDS (which it always does) they have noone to turn to.

    I enjoyed reading your post and hopefully you will have more coming. I'm new to the blog world, but i'm so glad someone put me on to the SBM webfeed. Can someone tell me what SO is and YT. lol.

    CG

  16. "The ratio is too high for women to men, and men know that there are slim pickings of them. So they feel they have a “right” to demand what they want of their woman because they know if they leave them, they’ll have the single disease"

    True: And we know sometimes women will fight like a hungry lion for a piece of a man. lol.

    I wonder about that ratio thing… is there really a man shortage or is that something that was fed to us so that we would feel the panic?

  17. @Nikki Sunshine, Jubilance, Anna N., Slim Jackson, Britt, Cheekie, and anyone else I missed: Thanks for the compliments, really glad u liked the post. this is my first time writing anything online (that actually got read), so i really appreciate them. hopefully, i'll make the cut again and SBM will bless me with the opportunity to grace the site.

    @Jubilance, Anna N., nope, Mary didn't have 2 dudes on her mind, it was an unintended typo…(i wrote this while drinking malt liquor, lol).

    @Cheekie's "if you lose so much of yourself then when you break-up (which may be bound to happen if you’re stuck on your man like a fly to flypaper…he’ll feel smothered)you won’t have nothing left. It’s not healthy for your SO to be your everything because if you lose him, then what do you have left? Sad." SO TRUE! I have seen this happen too many times in my family, friends, coworkers, and sadly, even within my own life. Unfortunately, when it's pointed out to the person, they all too often claim jealousy and keep on losing themselves until it's too late, i.e., their SO is gone and they're left as a shell of their former selves. I think a good tip to keep this from happening is to, every so often, take a step back and think on how your life has changed since you started seeing your SO. What commitments have you broken? what things have you let lag? Although, some things are bound to be squeezed out as u make time for ur new man/lady, if the answers represent things that are important to you and your success/goals, it is probably time to re-prioritize things to make sure that you are not letting your new love life jeopardize the rest of your life/commitments.

  18. @ Nikki – I wish a b! would tell me at least I have a man. Then I would have to break her and her piece of man down and someone's self-esteem would be laid out on the ground.

    That is the precise reason why I am very very very reluctant to comment on a woman's relationship, even when asked. I learned at a young age not to come between a woman and her meat.

  19. “Like being single is a curse
    That type of mentality some women posseses (I HAVE TO HAVE A MAAAAAAAAAN , GOTTA DO WHAT I GOTTA DO TO KEEP MY MAAAAAAAAN)..”

    This quote and post is the reason my last relationship burned in the flames of Hades, real talk.

    L.Marie – Nice post! Very thought provoking.

    My last gf wanted me to basically lose myself and felt that other aspects of my life "meant more" to me than her because of "the amonunt of care and time I took with them". Some people dont understand that you attack different aspects of your life in different ways, but that doesnt denote a level of care for that aspect. A majority of us can websurf for hours and still get our jobs done. Does that mean we care less for our job then say, working out, which we reseach, goto the gym daily, and show attention?

    Women, I salute those who understand the difference between compromise and dessolution of self. Who you were is what attracted your SO to you, so wouldnt changing that logically make you unattractive to him? hmmm… food for thought.

  20. My girl gettin married ….She dont want a bachelorette party cause she dont want him to have a bachelor party

    wtf

    we should do a post on controlling WOMEN lol

  21. @ Lisa Marie – Welcome. Enjoyable read.

    @ true – You are quickly becoming my blog crush. Tell me why my boy is getting married, i'm responsible for the bachelor party, his fiancee calls me up and asks me what I had planned.

    Of course, because i'm ignent when upset. I was like well we're playing 9 "hoes" of golf and actually the real bachelor party is after the wedding ceremony that's when we're taking him to Rehab at the Hard Rock. Hold that.

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