Building Bridges

This column was originally published in ChicksChat Oct issue 2001 
Battle Of The Sexes Series; A man's perspective
 
 

Building Bridges
By
Norman Peterson

 While the focus of this piece was written to be on Black women, it is not intended to slight or downplay the problems with relationships of women of any race.

 Black Rainbow

It doesn’t matter who we are, in our African-American rainbow. We are a part of the same prism. The genes in our bodies are the origin on all genetics.  Yet since the creation of institutionalized slavery, we seemed to have to constantly reinvent ourselves to find pride in who we are. By doing so it has been at the great expense of our relationship with each other, particularly our women. We’ve gone from property with out name, to Negroes, to Coloreds, to Afro Americans, to Blacks and now African-Americans of which none of them defines who we are. One can be lily White and be an African American, or Fijian Black or Indian brown to be Colored. Yet, when used disparaging it points directly to us. Though we do share a common heritage with our African cousins, our paths that led us to where we are today are decidedly different.

    In spite of all that slavery has taught us about our resilliance and survivalbility as a people: There is much we need to relearn about the art love, self-love respect and responsibility within our ranks, both individually and collectively.

As African-American men and women, our relationships has reached a low point, and could be on the upswing if we seek greater understanding of the other. However we should be forever vigilant, no one can think beyond the level of his or her own understanding. Today there are still far too many unwed mothers, far too many young men growing up without father figures in the household or in their lives. Even more depressing; too many babies are having babies. There is no right of passage for men making babies, no more than having them validates womanhood. To be able to have children is a blessing ordain by God under His Law, however, it appears what we African-Americans have done is make it a curse to the young and to the yet to be born. On the whole we as men, have not shouldered our shared responsibility of helping in raising these children in a healthy environment. We have much more in common with ourselves than making babies and dumping responsibility on the state. Though it appear at time we’re divided on that as well.

This all plays into the Lynch philosophy: Let’s Make A Slave. It seem more than three hundred years ago, he lectured on this very same topic today, on how to keep us slaves. Those who seek to divide us want us to be divided are having a field day with the modern day slaves. They would have us concentrate our differences, rather our commonality..

Our culture is unique, so is our language with in a language. We share a common value system, which includes deeply religious beliefs. With all that we have in common, why should our small differences over shadow that.

Our Differences: In order to understand what our differences are, and how to go about resolving them; we must first disconnect, disassemble, and discern what has happened between us. Is it real or imagined? The biggest question are; how it got this and is it in permanent disrepair?.

Today much have been written by Black psychologists, as to how we should go about remedying it. Yet, there are plenty others  doing fingers pointing out the problems and holes in our relationships with the Black women.

   I’m not anti- psychologist, but Black folks in America is just different! Throw away the books when it comes to us. We are unique, our problems are unique, as residual effect of slavery, how we go about solving them is unique. When psychological books and writings were assembled, like in history books, our problems were excluded, and only included if we had the ability to think as those in a privileged society. To those who don’t, oh well. For the rest of America, it seems the natural order of things; when Black men and women can no more get along with each other, than crabs in a barrel. One only has to read the today's headlines, to claim validity in that. When it comes to our relationship with each other, it’s not so noticeable as being on the 6 ‘O clock news. Then it’s for the most part where one of our violent brothers has done something stupid such as committing an act of violence against one of our Sisters.

Most of what has been written have placed the blame squarely on the shoulders of we Black men! In fairness to us, it's women who have been doing much of the writing; for women and from their prospective. I feel the problem would be better served if the were addressed to us directly.

Yet, it stand to reason it's therapy for the soul because that's how deep the pain runs. That too is okay, as long as it's not vindictive, and untruthful. My grand mom who was my hero, she used to say to me, when another kid called me a hateful name; "Tell 'em it takes one to know one." In this instance, she's right. There was a time when the well uninformed Black man felt all women wanted was the three M's, a meal, a man, and her monthlies (personally I take offense to that saying, simply because of all of the women in my family. That thinking is what has helped to put us on separate shores of understanding.

Black men should be more enlightened about Black women now than at any time in our brief history. As educated as we have become, Black women are more educated than we, better paid, and has a higher standard of living that most of us can only dream about. There was a time when women went to college in hopes of getting an educated man, now they go to college hoping to get an education so they don’t need a man.

I've been a professional in the corporate world, and owned my own corporation; I’ve also been a hustler of sorts, in that pleasure was my business; a mack daddy in the real world. I was born in the un-empowered world, and I have traveled through out the country. I've dealt with Black folks on many different levels. Therefore, I am a well-qualified Black man to speak to other Black men on our relationship with Black women. As a point of order, I'll go so far as to say; I'm more qualified than most. What I have come to understand about Black women came not from books, or theories, taught in universities. It came from the greatest source; women themselves! And while my education about them is ongoing, they have taught me well enough, so that I may teach others; in hope they may learn from my experience. I have hung out with the poor and hob Knobbed with the more affluent on the social ladder. Even though I consider myself a late bloomer, I've had enough affairs, hoodwinked enough, bamboozled enough, married to enough, kicked to the curb enough, had my heart broken enough, broken enough hearts, given enough, taken enough from women in general, Black Women in particular, to speak authoritative about our relationships with them. When I thought of compiling this material, my intentions were to write as a third party bystander. I can’t do that because I'm both a part of the problem and the solution. At one time or another, I have been the very person I’m writing about. As enlightened as I think I have come to be, I realize I have a long way to go, because until we are all enlightened, we all remain in the dark.

There was a time we loved our women very much and we cared about our relationship with them, and we understood them. It appears today; our love has been replaced by our lust for drugs ourselves and women of other races. We only care about who won the NBA championship, who won the super bowl, the name plate on the back of out car, and the logos on our shoes. And understand is a word that precedes the catch phrase,’ What I'm saying.’

Oftentimes I've heard women referred to as, 'the weaker sex.' To that I say to those un-enlightened ones; wake up and smell the coffee. Women are the wiser sex; think back to our mamas, and then to our fathers. When it came to brute strength, old pops was a strong as a mule, but when it came to dealing with problems, he was as weak as pond water. He had one answer for everything, "to hell with it, shit; they can kiss my damn ass! Damn, that's how you handle that shit." But good old mom knew something, then I'm still having a hard time understanding. We catch more flies with honey, than we do with vinegar. There are two ways of handling a problem; there's a right way and there's a wrong way! If it's done the right, it only has to be done once. Decide how many times we want to do it! Then just do it.

This is, neither to pander to, nor kiss Black women’s butt. But to recognize, and honor them for being our soul-mates, the source of our pleasure and inspiration. I hope this will help bring about an end to the seemingly endless, mind games we like to play, as well, and the ones we play them on; you our sisters. The one person whose got our back.

Before we can begin even think about the reconciling process, we must identify that which must, first be reckoned, then reconciled, then we have to go directly to the source. We must be willing to communicate openly and honestly with Black women. And not be afraid of her answers. What has happened to our relationship, and what has come between us? Is it mistrust, lack of sensitivity, or is it all blown out of proportion by one big misunderstanding?

We must also ask ourselves if her expectations of us are too high, or is it we think so low of our abilities? We must do an honest assessment as to what our priorities are. Then are two value judgment questions the both of us must come to an agreement about: Whether it’s quality or quantity that we seek. And is what is expected from us more important than what is expected of us. There is a decidedly difference. Perhaps we can arrive at a point of reconciling by making baby steps. This journey to a thousand understanding starts with a single first step; I'll try.

Step I

Some Type Of Understanding

The truth is from your Lord, let him who will, believe and let him who will disbelieve....

1

True Intentions

It is my belief more relationships would last, if we laid it on the line up front. Is it a physical need or is it emotional. That brutal honesty would turn many would be couples off. Yet what we often fail to remember, where there is truth there is honesty. Anything less is merely lies veiled in our own self-sameness insecurity.

In the final analysis it would eliminate all of the charades and false pretenses. For the most part, unless the woman is an out and out ho, a woman won’t go out like that, and men on the other felt if they talked about what their real intentions were, they wouldn‘t get beyond the second sentence. Our competitive nature (male ego) thinks if comes that easy where‘s the challenge. So around and around we go like a cat chasing his tail.

And in a real sense the cat is chasing what he perceives to be_ tail!

By the same token, it seems, today before we make an attempt to relate to anyone, we need some sexual inklings as to what we are pursuing. We assort them as; I know this guy, I know this woman, my boss is, this guy named Chris, this chick named Chris, Chris is a lesbian, Chris is a dyke, Chris is a homosexual, Chris is a fag, my buddy Chris, this chick friend of mine, my old lady, my old man, my lady, my man: Whoa! Damn!. Rather than put everyone in the gender blender to be one person a human being, we would rather put them in a sorter, or sifter to separate us by gender. Then we don't mind blending like colors together, regardless to gender. Whether its African-Americans, Mexicans, or Latinos, its all this or all that, etc. Heaven help those from the gay communities, they receive a double portion. If you are Gay Black men, Lesbian Latino chick, Fag White dude, this dyke White babe that. That way when we pour our concoction from the gender blender, everyone is the same. We are all comfortable with it. Dare I say, with out defrauding Freud, we relate more to others in terms of their sex, or sexual preferences, than as people.

After all the dialogue, all the analysis, all of monologues and assorting, and in spite of what we signify: The bottom line is before we try to make any sort of emotional, or spiritual connection, we see the physical side and make it sexual. As a hetero-man there is something animalistic that attracts me to Black women. It's as if the shape of their bodies, the way they move from the hip down, has a mesmerizing effect. Need I say more, by the mere fact she's alluring, seductive, and Black would be enough to get any man discombobulated: She also has another thing that aroused the animal in us. That's the ability to reach out and turn our imagination on, without a single spoken word. It's the language of the body. And yet, this magnificent specimen of all the human species must endure the unending hardship, and abuse, by the very creature she excites. Very few of us can arbitrarily treat her as just another human being, our equal. We want to check out the booty. Check out the boobs. It would seem we're at Mac Donald's in search of a Happy Meal, than a human being. Why, then must we put them through this endless game of cat and canary? When we know that the immediate goal is to devour her, in satisfying our sexual need. I know many women prior to the sexual revolution in America, who were under the opinion the way to man's heart was through is stomach (my mother was among them). I dare say today, ask any woman, and she'll tell you, that opinion is a little too high. This is not to conclude all men are sexually motivated, no more than most Black women think we are. Yet it does point out a glaring reality. In the beginning, it's physical. I dare any man to deny it. There's probably a hand full of men if any, would consider venturing into an intimate and caring relationship if it at some point they felt there would be no physicality. Although it's just the opposite when it comes to leaving. We want to hang around to see who's next for sex, and if we can block that individual. Yet, I ask the question: Why would two strangers want to form a common bond with someone that could potentially be deadly. Not to mention placing themselves in such a position of compromise. It's physical? It's emotional? It's compulsive? Ultimately what is to be gained from sex is the feeling of temporary euphoria, which repeats itself time after time (if we're lucky). The feeling is so strong, that some will rape, batter, kill, disgrace their families, or even get on national television and lie, or proclaim it's none of our business. Make no mistakes about it: Sexual need is the most compelling influence in our dealing with others. Whether it’s the physical act or emotional one. It propels our emotions onward. The depths of one's passion fuel how doggedly we pursue. As men we miss the mark when, we equate passion with sexual relationship. The goal of passion is to achieve sexual satisfaction. Sexual relationship is different, very different. Even the dictionary has it wrong. It defines sexual relationship as coitus, which is the commingling between male and female. Where does that leave the gay and lesbian communities? What do they do have? Sexual intercourse? Well, I can kind of see that working for gay men, but with lesbians, they come up just a little short, (no pun intended). We shouldn't forget our furred friends. I have never heard of physical contact between animals (of the furry variety) as being nothing more than mating, or studding. We ere the only creatures that have coitus just for he sake of having coitus.

A great display of sexual relationship occurs among gay and lesbian couples. I see them as relating sexually, in the literal sense. Being a heterosexual, I can't readily identify with it, in that context, however heterosexual men, sexually relate all of the time. With same sex, we can talk more openly about sex. Women know that we sit around and discuss sexuality and conquests, with our dawgs. Surprisingly when it comes to women many of us think just the opposite. We think they sit around discussing their periods, their girl friends, and their relationships with their old men, their nails, and who's cheating on whom. To give us a clue, be G I B; whether is oral, or freaky, the word will be out, before you can unzip your trousers.

Men Black men in particular face it: When the facts are laid out before us, our entire approach is totally different than sisters. Our underlying motives are predominantly sexually driven. Women as a whole, the Black women in particular, want us to think, they think, it's their personalities or their features. Yet, they are fully aware, that sex appeal is always one sure way of seizing our attention. If not, the sex appeal business, nail salons, beauty shops, health spas, dress shops, cosmetic companies, wouldn't be businesses at all, but mere hobbies. Since women know sex appeal is at the forefront in our motivations, it should be easier for them to understand our initial intentions. I for one cannot deny this. Personally, I have yet to meet the Brother who wanted to meet an attractive woman, simple because he wanted to bond with her, because she played a mean game of touch football, or knew who played point guard on the 1993 Chicago Bulls. Not even one that could bang the boards with the best of them on the playground. If she has a big butt and a small waist, that’s good enough for us. We’ll deal with the bonding later, at this point we just want to bang her. Let's face it, as men we can never be over confident of ourselves when it comes to women anyway. Because we are never sure if we lack, what she likes or not. In the best of relationships very few men are well adjusted enough to have the luxury of feeling one hundred percent certain, that her interest is genuinely in us, or what we can do for her i e;( a good provider, a good fathers, an honest person etc.) And that is one of the good things they have going for them, in terms of keeping the playing field level. Because, let's face it fellas, once we get the feeling of total conquest, we feel the need, to conquer new territories. A word to sisters; to keep us in lock down, and never let us know, what you're thinking, only that you are thinking. And before we make another move, we'd best figure out what you're thinking.

2

What Black Men Assume About Black Women That Must Cease

When it comes to women, we men are clue-less as to what they want of a man, in relations to in a man. As varied as our opinions maybe, we all have them.

Much of our knowledge has not come from the Black women, but from Black men. (We have a conniption when other races tell us how to be Black men, yet we don’t take it upon ourselves to try and understand our women, after all culturally we are going to be the same. That’s another step we don’t have to go through in dealing with them). It's perception based. It seems as though its almost blasphemous to ask any woman anything about what is important to her except, " How was I? Did you cum?"

In general conversation with men, I've come up with several preconceptions we have about women. A few are plausible most are ridiculous, all are laughable. I'm sure at times it must leave women feeling like they just discovered this strange species of dumb animals called block heads.

There are several common lies, myths, assumptions, old school thinking, or perceptions we have about women. Before we ever know her name, we feel we have enough basic information about her to make a good assumption about her character. Until she proves us wrong our preconceived ideas and foregone conclusions as to what she's like are already in place.

1

Given the right circumstances any women will cheat.

2

If a woman rejects our advances, she's either stuck up, or a lesbian.

3

Anytime a woman shows interest in us first, it's always financial or sexual related.

4

A woman can't do what a man does, and still be able to call herself a lady.

5

Every woman has her price for sex, all a man has to do is figure out what it is.

6

The way a woman dress speaks volumes for what she is.

7

Size matters, the bigger the better.

8

A man cant trust her any further than he can see her, then he can’t be too sure about that.

9

If a woman's isn't at work, or with her man, she shouldn’t be out, because anytime a man sees a woman out by herself he thinks she can be had; myth.

10

Any woman who is out alone in a bar, or at the club is trawling for a man.

11

At three in three o clock morning, if a women goes to a man’s and she is sexually battered by him, she should basically keep her mouth shut. She knew what time it was.

12

If women don’t have intentions of going all the way, they shouldn’t start.

13

As a rule, a man should treat a lady like a pig, and a pig like a lady. It will mess their minds up.

14

Most women would rather not work they would prefer to stay at home, even if it means having babies.

15

No isn’t always final, its just another way of teasing a man.

16

The ladies will tell us anything we want to hear, if she thinks it will get her what she wants from us.

17

If a man doesn't do things to keep her in line every once in a while she feels he doesn't love her.

18

A woman is always trying to change a man. Her expectations are too high.

19

Great sex will cure all of her woes.

20

Most women live in la la land, and have little concept of what its like to be a Black man in America.

3

What Black Woman Assume About Black Men That Must Cease

Because of our normal approach to women, its small wonder we all tend to send out the same hidden messages, they decoded it and perceive all of us to want much the same thing; pure unadulterated sex. We are perceived to let our little head think for our big head. Then its a matter of them viewing us as bunch of sexually starved boys.

1

We want sex all the time.

2

We want someone to clean our house.

3

Multiple sex partners.

4

Somebody to do the cooking.

5

Thy neighbor's wife.

6

Somebody to wash dirty draws (underwear).

7

The girl at the job, who’s just been begging for it.

8

Somebody to have babies.

9

More Sex!

10

A second mama.

11

Some one to hook ‘em up down there.

12

A chauffeur.

13

His and some other man’s old lady!

14

A lady, a saint and a ho neatly wrapped up into one!

15

A loan officer; co signor.

16

A bitch.

17

Easy.

Beginning to get the picture; is no wonder we have drifted apart. We are viewed as sex starved maniacs.

Step II

Articulating and Communicating: Wants And Needs

Any woman that allows herself to be used for the sole purpose of sex, can not value herself any higher that the man that uses her...

1

What Black Women Want

Like any other race of women, Black women tells us, all they want is a loving caring and secure relationship. Her expectations are someone who will respect her and who wants to spend time with her. He will also be one who is willing to share in her dreams, to encourage her effort, and yes, to even satisfy their desire. This doesn't mean turning her place into Motel 6 for sex twenty-four-seven.. It means quality time with her, whether it's holding hands at the park, going for a stroll on the beach, or doing nothing at all. They realize it is important for men to be among other men to spend time male bonding, but many cant see how this is an every week-end thing.  It can't be that much bonding in the world. There’s got to be more going on that. Besides what kind of bonding is done in an adult club. More like trying to get hooked up.

Conventional wisdom tells her that not every one can be independently wealthy. Monetary and materialism go a long way to ease financial burdens, but they shouldn't make the man. Those are things made by men. They should be his mileposts. Money can't buy things of great importance to them; love nor happiness. It can only buy material things. In time materialism will soon pass away, or become passé; what's in vogue today, is out of style tomorrow. Everyone must ask him or herself, if there was no money, where would the relationship be?

Of course, not being stuck on stupid, everyone knows finances are one of the oars which we use to paddle our relationships boat along with, but not both. Most clear-thinking women will look past what men don't have, to that which makes them special.

Perhaps in time Black men in general, will realize the sweetness of women may be our weakness, but it is also our greatest strength. Somewhere along the line, men have come to think, today's women are enjoying the fruits of their labor, simply because she is a woman. That she has not had to pay the same price. In case we don't know, or have forgotten, great women, such as Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Katie Peterson( my grand mother) they excelled in the face of adversity and danger, sharing the responsibility and toting the load. Though women are considered the weak sex, there is nothing weak about them. Being women, and being weak are two different people. Know whose whom! There's also a myth that needs clearing: When it comes to sex, there's a correct way and an incorrect of acquiring sexual favors, and setting the stage for a pleasurable experience. Granted they are aware of the importance of speed men place upon it, once they have agreed to become a willing participant. Be aware; there should be no trains they have to catch, or their vagina isn’t going anyplace. Please take the time and do it right, so that a good time can be had by all. That doesn't mean one play, which is a kiss on the lips, or two play, which is a kiss on the lips, and feeling their breast, not even three play, which is doing the other two, and placing the hand on, or in their vagina. They need true foreplay not four play, which doesn't mean doing the other three and slapping them on the butt for the fourth! It's the complete, visual, vocal, physical and imaginary sexual journey.

2

What Black Women Needs Are

Since most relationships start as false faces behind smoke screens, it’s usually a prolonged period before it hits women, we were hiding behind false faces and smoke screens. All of those airs we put on was a soft shoe to get her body.  Small wonder that long after most relationships are over, we still pop in and out of her life, talking about, giving us a little, for old times sake! A little what? And for what old times sake? We mean for new times! To some brothers, we don't care who she sees as long as she finds the time, to sneak us a piece on the side.

In listening to all of the sisters, throughout the years, regardless of how little they had in common, or whether they were on the same social or economic scales: To the person, they were overwhelming united in their frustration with Black men. Very few could find a man, who wanted willingly to commit to a monogamous type relationship, without them commiting first.
 
TRUTHFULNESS
as a virtue. They all didn't break it down this way, these are compilations of those things they said were most important to wholeness in their relationships: I did a self-inventory, and believe me, I don't meet all those things, many, but not all!

Truthful/Thoughtful

: A liar is worse than a thief. A thief intention is very clear, that's to take without giving back. With a liar, one can never be certain.

Kindness and consideration are often mistaken for thoughtfulness. When we do things for show of appreciation, we proclaim it as being thoughtful. In reality, it's being responsive, kind or considerate. Throughout the years I have heard women I've dated or been married to, deem that, as being thoughtful as well, i e; flowers for birthdays, Valentine's Day, Mother's day, Christmas gifts etc. All of these gift bearers are seen as being thoughtful They can be, if they are things that's really needed, and unexpected. In reality, it's being responsive or considerate of ones feelings. If things aren't going well, her money is running low, car needs a tune up, something that's out of the ordinary; you stroke her a check; that's being thoughtful,. Thoughtfulness comes from the head, consideration comes from heart, and responsive comes from instinct. While they 're all nice,, one who's responsive considerate, has your heart in mind, but, one who's thoughtful has your well being in mind. That's bankable!

What is this thing that so many of want and demand it, so few of us actually know how to earn it, and none of know exactly what to do with it once we’ve got it. It’s RESPECT.

Respect:

For what ever the reasons many Black men will rarely offer to Black Women, that which he expect himself and gives to other races whether it’s earned or not. . He has to first check down on her, see who she hangs with, where does she hang out. What’s the four-one-one? All of the pettiness of a pea brain. Only if she is Oprah, then is he willing to give it up but not without reservation. (in spite of popular belief, respect is a reward, not a gift it has to be earned). With other Sisters, though, not only will she earn it as well, she's going to have to tap dance, jump through hoops do what ever else they deem fit.

   We look at the way she dresses, the way she talks, the way she walks, the way she moves when she walks. We look at the type of hair-do she has. We automatically put her in a certain category, before she ever opens her mouth, i.e.; a hoochies, male basher, ghetto girl, or welfare queen real psychologists we are. I know why we do it, it's to give ourselves an out, in case she give us the shoulder. Those first word out of our mouths are; " man I didn't want to talk to that ho anyway, or man that ho stuck up." If women had any idea, of what they just went through after that first glance. They would tell us to f--- off, because they for one don't need our man drama! Instead' she smiles politely at us, and nods, and here we come! If we can't arrive at some consensus, it makes it almost impossible for the average Sister to get any thing we readily give to women of other races; the benefit of the doubt. It too infers that, we who do such, have a low opinion of sisters. Personally I dislike Black men who do this. Yet, being a student of human nature, it reveals a lot about us. The most notable is that, there is no race deemed below us at the bottom of the social ladder. Granted, I have been in states where there is a large Native American population and they are bestowed with that dubious distinction. But I have yet to hear any White American acknowledging having Mandinka, or Zulu or Ethopian blood.

In as much as our holding our Sister to a much higher standard shows how apart we are. That coupled with self-centeredness, macho, chauvinistic, and closed mindedness it no wonder we are at this crossroad of Black on Black relationship. Wherewithal lies another hurdle for her. Heaven help any woman if she has low self-esteem.

Understanding:

If there is a single word that has more hooks in it than an artificial minnow this is one. Everyone claims it, yet precious few actual show it, unless it's in their best self-interest. Understanding, is the stuff that makes a relationship good, and good relationships better, and great relationships the best,. Only a woman knows what it's like to be a woman, but the same can be said for men. The difference is she's willing to try to put herself in a man's place. Men on the other hand, find it weak, or condescending to try and think like women. Most of us substitute sympathy for understanding. Though they seem related, they are not. Understanding is sensing how she feels. Sympathy is being sensitive to a familiar, or shared feeling. Know the difference. I've been told all of my life women feel things much deeper than a man. I don't have a problem with that. What I have a problem with is, when we don't to make the effort to try. By not making the effort is totally dissing her. Yet, in reversal of roles, we go off. Having a hissy, ranting and raving about her not caring about us, not having our back, the usual stuff we pack for a guilt trip.

Tactful or Treatment:

A man who knows what to say to a woman will get every time, but a man that knows what to do will keep her all the time.

Unlike men, women will recall the first time, and the first words, out of a man 's mouth, that really captured her imagination. Even down to how they flowed with such grace or style. They also remember how tactful and gentlemanly. It didn't matter if it's poetic, or hokey. It stayed with them. To us, we can hardly recall what we said to her yesterday.

Either we have never learned or just don't give a damn about just what is important to sisters. We seem to have forgotten; the lost art of romancing, helping them validate their self-worth, and how to say things that will flatter, them yet not patronize or pander. Somewhere along the way, I must have had my head in the sand, or up my butt: But when did bitch, and ho become flattering? It's our shining moment, our one time to be a star, which sets the stage for a beautiful relationship, and we refer to her as "my bitch, or my ho". C'mon Bro! The late great Richard Pryor, as funny as he was, he was the consumate womanizer.

Since Black women were little girls, they often dreamed about the moment of being romanced and swept off of their feet, by some knight in shinning armor. (Not some Brother with a forty in his hand, and driving a Hoopty.) They developed the damsel in distress complex. Which leads to the paper-doll syndrome, and when they feel they have met that magical person, they're swept away. That's why some go through a lifetime of heartbreak and disappointment, because Prince Charming is more like prince toad. I hear Brother men say every day: Man a good woman is hard to find, I don't trust none of them bitches, nowadays." And by the same token, Black women say something similar: "Girl there ain't a lot of good men left, if there is, they are either married or old." The rest of them no good m f's, ain't shit! Hey at some point here, we all have to step back and take self-inventory, is it they or is it I?

When a woman develop that paper doll syndrome, she gets stuck on stupid. They keep making the same mistakes repeatedly. Until the person she's looking for, completely matches the image in their thinking, every man has a fatal flaw. This leads to a major pattern for bad relationships. Failed relationship after failed relationship, she hops from bed to bed, accepting whomever is next, with little consideration if the person is right for her or not, as long as he a man. After the customary, penis-vaginal monologue, she gets caught in the hype of being able to say she has man, and miss all of the signals: This joker is a loser. Sometimes they are as visible as his gold teeth in his mouth, or the stars on moon-less night. In spite of her instincts kicking in and tell her to abort: the relationship isn't going to go anywhere, she turns a deaf ear, and lunges headlong into it. There are many terrific and qualified Black men available, which are rarely given the opportunity, to romance her, because he doesn’t look a certain way, he doesn’t drive a certain make, or  have a certain flair. It’s something I personally can relate to. In my lifetime I have dated, and even married a woman who without my sheer doggedness would not have given me a second look. Looks are very deceiving. When I feel I've met one of those women, to get their attention, I either dazzle them will brilliance, of baffle them with bullshit. (Which is okay, as long as they accept it for what it is), either way it gets their conduct. What we do with it at that point is where we're supposed to shine. All most self-respecting men want is a chance, to get their point across. This sets the stage for another type of respect

Honesty

: It is the best policy, yet, if there was ever a word that can emotionally discombobulate women, this is it. The first time I heard it use was from my grandmother, she referred to the color Black as being honest. I never could quite figure that one out, since some of the biggest thieves I knew, were very berry black. Then there is the euphemism, 'being honest with you'. What were you before, dishonest? My personal favorite is, honestly'. What does that mean? If you are what you claim to be, your actions need no narrating. To whose benefit are you proclaiming yourself to be. My Definition: Honest is state of seeing what is right, saying what is right, and doing what is right.

Fidelity:

Any man that chooses more than one woman, for the sole purpose of sex, invalidates himself as a moral human being; void of reason and responsibility...

To many women; a faithful man is an oxymoron. Whether there's justification in the remark, it doesn't matter. It is what it is. Faithful, is a centipede; there are many legs, but just one body. What constitute faithfulness? If a man believes in God, and His Apostles, does that make him faithful? If a man has many lovers does that make him unfaithful? The answer may surprise many, but it is a definitive, no. Believing in God and His Apostles is not the sole criteria for being faithful. Having multiple sexual partners doesn't constitute, unfaithfulness. Where it becomes unfaithful, when all involved are treated unequally, either by living under different roofs or receiving unequal treatment. Adam believed in God but was disobedient. Polygamy in many societies is accepted practices, even Mormons in America. It is not thought of as being unfaithful. Few men involved in multiple sex partners ever want to leave their mate, but by sneaking around seeing them, that is unfaithful, and disobedient and defiant of the laws of God.

Uplifting

: Most of us are so caught up in making a living, we forget how to live. We impose our negative attitudes on others whether they solicit them or not. One thing, I've discovered, if there's someone we can talk things through with, it helps us to rejuvenate and refocus much quicker. What this does, it lightens our burden, and lay them square on the shoulder of another. Which is fine, as long as it's a two way street. Any man that's constantly whining about his misfortunes, and can turn the brightest optimist into doomsayer. Eventually his attitude becomes like a dark cloud over many. Negativity is cancer, that unless it is diagnosed early, it can be terminal! As a rule no one likes a whiner.

Married men, and men in relationships are carriers of negatism. They are the most inhibited men in the world. They are afraid to take chances, live on the edge, or just be themselves! They are snakes in the grass. A Women have to be really desperate, needy or greedy to even consider getting involved with this serpent. I will cite one anecdote and move on: A woman found a rattlesnake nearly dead lying in the middle of the road. Many cars constantly tried to run over it to finish the job. She picked the snake up took it home, and nurtured it back to health. When the snake had recovered she reached in to pet it, and it bit him. Puzzled, she was shocked, and asked why the snake why? The snake replied; you knew what I was when you picked me up. Almost anyone will concede life is a journey. It has many crooks and turns, but if we kick back, relax, we’ll enjoy the ride. Married men, and men in existing intimate relationships, are a detour to nowhere. Other than the obvious, a few laughs and maybe some financial support, what else do they have to offer?

Listeners;

Listening is all too often mistaken for understanding. Nothing could be further from the truth. There are many men, who will give the courtesy of listening, who when it's over, don't have a clue, of what was said to them. Listening is nothing more than hearing and sympathizing with spoken words. Understanding come from making the connection, between what is said and what is meant. Therefore if one gives the courtesy of listening, it doesn't mean they understand. A good barometer is how many questions are asked during and afterwards. No questions no connections, no understanding.

Seven things we will tell women about ourselves without ever uttering a word. It will clue them in as to what our real intentions are.

Nice and Considerate

1

If it’s purely a one time sexual thing their body, their perfume, their looks. There will be several sexual innuendoes to follow. Whether it’s complementing on their outward appearance, or at a loss for words in our general conversation. If we can’t keep our eyes off of their body.

2

If it has the possibility to being an on going sexual thing, we’ll spend a bit more time getting general information, and in investigating whether, there’s a significant other, etc.

3

If we are curiosity seekers, we will observe her from across the room, and wait for the right moment to approach.

4

If our eyes are roving, we’re looking for anything we can pick up for the evening.

5

Standing not wanting to sit, there’s strong possibility, we are married or in a committed relationship. Therefore we’re prospecting for future conquests.

6

If our interest is genuine, and our intentions are noble, there will be an even exchange of information. There will be no sexual innuendoes.

7

Willingness to meet under different circumstances.

Earthy or down to earth:

Earthy is a euphemism for being down. But being down and being down to earth is different. Of course today in this new millennium, many would like to be thought of as down, but not everyone can. Being down takes in far more things I desire to be into. I'm down with doing what's right. I'm down with treating others the way I expect to be treated. I'm down with helping lift others less fortunate. I'm even down with being a man. Yet, there are things I'm not down with. I'm not down with men going upside a woman's head for any reason. I'm now down with doing drugs. I'm not down with men indiscriminately making babies to be come a ward of the state. As I've stated before; I'm always leery about anyone who volunteers unsolicited virtues, before I can see it played out. Those who are really down with good don't have to say a thing. Those who aren't, keep repeating it as though, they are trying to convince themselves. I'd like to think, I'm pretty cool and laid back; every day people, my demeanor will attest to that without my ever having to utter the words, ' I'm down. '

Self-Motivated

: A job! Even during my six years as a petty hustler, I always had a job. I'm neither bragging nor complaining. The vast majority of Black men do hold down a job. Even the dope dealers and pushers have a job. The only one without a job is the pimp. Yet, what he is constitutes a job. A man who isn't prone to work, has a serious downside to Black women. He's a roadblock that stands between her and her aspirations. Therefore he is of little or no support to her in as much as he's trying to stay alive.

Supportive

; Do Black men really know the real meaning of being supportive? It is often mistaken to mean supporting. The two are totally different. It's not paying for a baby-sitter so that a trip to the movies is in order. Neither is it flipping her a fifty. Not even going shopping with her at Wal-Mart's. Giving her a night out on the town with the girls doesn't qualify. These well meaning gestures are thoughtful, but it's not being supportive. Being supportive means locking on to what it is important to her, and locking out what it is you deem important to her. The LO LO concept, for us is hard to do. Because every one knows, at least one man it has happened to, somewhere in the back of our mind, we think; should she achieve her aspirations, I'm going to lose this woman. Then what. By the same token, every woman knows dozens that's been tagged, bagged, tied and thrown aside after her man makes it.

3

What Black Men Wants Are

 Many Black men are only prepared to open up only a part of themselves, in a pure unadulterated state. That which doesn't threaten their street creds which will compromise our standing. Few are ever open up totally. It becomes had for his woman to know what he wants

Although conventional wisdom tell us openness is essential to all good relationships. It seem to mean, we will only concede our positions on certain matters as long as it’s in line with our thinking.

Honesty, We think being honest is very important virtues for Black Women to have. When it comes to us, however, that's another episode.

Openness promotes understanding: It is that little something that feels like a breeze, we cant see it, yet we know it's there, and it’s soothing relief. It  equates with a woman’s conduct. The more mysterious or elusive a woman is the more unlikely we are to get a grasp on her being open with us. .

Acceptance, is critical, it is something, we absolutely must have to gain respect. It's her acceptance, which determines our open-mindedness about her. And it’s her open-mindedness that validates our being.

Her acceptance hinges on whether she's honest, well adjusted, or pleasant to talk to. This is the first doorway leading to the type whose life we are about to make an entrance, albeit under false pretenses. Acceptance also determines her demeanor, and that carries the most weight; (is she stuck on herself, or evasive, is she a male basher). Next comes her honesty. It is critical to our psyche, and soothing to his ego, and goes hand in hand with her demeanor. Her acceptance will also allow her to look beyond our shortcoming, to focus on our virtues. This allows us the latitude to validate ourselves in a language that we hope she will understand.

Respect: For as long as the Black man has been in America, he's been the most ostracized and the least respected by the world community, even his African brothers. Only if we can run fast, catch a pass, shoot the ball, go low on Sunday or know how to knock someone on his ass, will the respect be there. Therefore, by the mere fact we have survived, we feel we're entitled to a little respect, at least from our women. It's only common courtesy, (with a pride mixed in). When I was a boy, I used to hear the old men say, "The freest two people on the face of this earth, is a Black woman, and a White man". To this day, I don't exactly what it means, but I can only speculate. We can even accept being dissed by a sister, but not in a social setting. I dare say we care more about respect, than results. If a Sister disses a brother, instead of trying another approach, to reach her, he will try to loud talk her, talk about her mama, and even try to dis her as well. This plays out itself every Saturday night at any Black club in America: A Brother hit on a sister, she disses him, he cusses her out, talks about her mama, and shadows her for the entire evening

The bottom line is, we differ from women. Many of us think, finances are very important in romances. Relationships can't travel very far, on empty pockets. Most women will tell us, "That's all right, money isn't important, it's the person that counts." And that's true, but continue to dine in, or eat out at Mickey Dees. See how long that will last. Then the first statements out of her mouth will change to, " We've got to talk!

Be that as it may, with the introductions behind us, the real games begin. This is where most relationships veer off course right up front. We begin by making cash commitment in the relationship, then we go into the budget trimming mode. (Remember what we start with, we have to stay with). We start by wining and dining her, showing her a great time, taking her to many of the better places, and doing a wide array of activities. If we've really got it going on and the conversation is good, Black women get all excited looking forward to trying to connect with us, and forget about trying to, protect her heart at least until she get to know us better. She does so without realizing, we are scheming for the upper hand., and there is no limit to how far we will go to get it. It doesn't matter if it involves doing something that will complete blow her away, or unveiling something from our seemingly sensitive side.

4

What Black Men Needs Are

Acceptance Understanding, or Control? Ask Black men, and we will gladly tell you what we need for a woman to be. She must be someone who understands us, has our back and accepts us for who we are not what we are. Yet, on the other hand  oftentimes we present our wants in terms of demands, and expectation. Yet, when is asked of us, we feel demands leads to higher expectation, probably more than we’re capable, or want to give, especially considering the mortality rate of relationships in America. We are expected to be every man to our woman: To be her hero, her best friend, her knight in shining armor, her bread winner, someone she can lean on in times of despair, wear the pants and be her protector. And most of all act like a man about it. Yet to be all of those, oftentimes means abandoning who we really are if we already aren't. There is an old adage, (a man can not show the way to place he has never traveled).
    Those who can are the ones that are most successful in their relationships. They don’t struggle or wander about from relationship to relationship. For a relatively few, however, a woman's expectation is their get out of jail free card in any relationship Any time they want out of a relationship, they merely say, ‘ you expect too much of me. Only that individual and God knows if their reasoning or intent is legit or not. I think the individuals that do the soft shoe between reasons and excuses depend greatly upon the age. The older a man is, the more like he is to want a woman who understands him. This isn’t necessarily an indictment against the June bugs. A number of them are returning to old fashioned values. It’s the old and the junior players that use it as a smoke screen to perfection.
   To the unsuspecting woman, they presents a good case. They begin to feed into his reason. That sets them up to be used and controlled, with little or nothing in return. No man is going to come out and say it if that’s his intent. How do we get the love and respect out of the relationship, we feel we deserve? In a sneaky attempt to find out, how she much she accepts us as being her guy. Is she down for letting, her guy, be the man and call the shots, or are she an independent male basher, psycho babbler, who believes in the one that pays the cost, is the same that gets to be the boss in a relationships. It's important to know it, because, Brothers wants no more to be second fiddle to his mate, than share her with another man. Therefore we need to set the stage, for major control in the relationship. While most of us aren't seeking dominance, we feel we need to be the man, and set the tone in a relationship. Where, when and how!

Is acceptance a euphemism for control. As Black men we are about control. It inherently is in our nature to desire control, or dominate. Were there no truth in that remark, the National Basketball Association biggest stars would be five foot ten inch White boys, still shooting the two handed set shot.

Most relationships are controlled in one of three ways: Respect, Subjective, and Reactive.

Respect: She has the utmost respect for us because of what ever it is that keeps her attracted to us. She’s acutely aware of our likes and dislikes. She genuinely care about and us and the relationship. She believes in us, therefore, she makes us aware of her movement, where she goes and when she goes, and whom she goes with. This usually occurs during the infancy stage of the relationship.

Subjective: She believes in us and the relationship, and like what she has seen up to this point, not to rock the boat or make waves, she, checks in with us subject to she makes any social or economical move.

Control: Black men who are not well adjusted feel the absolute need to control their women. Many of us like to sneak inside a woman's head, with out her ever knowing we're there or how he got in. For some she leaves the door wide open. A number of men have stones large enough to tell other men, they had better control their woman, or else lose her. This wreaks havoc on most relationships, when another man plants the seed of doubt. Not to heed make him look small in the eyes of his peers, and makes him a little uncertain as far how solid his relationship is. Therefore he sets out to control the woman by going through a series of mind control game. First he relates indirectly what was told to him and inter-act. That’s becomes inter-active control. The more he thinks about the more he seem to react, and that’s become reactive control. And last, when he starts to make suggestions, reasons with her common sense in how it must look, thus this form of control becomes proactive. During these actions, she relinquishes bit by bit all control over her to him. At this point she has essentially turned over all of her freedom, becoming his, a non person.

Many women look back on what seemed to be a match made in heaven, and wonder what in the hell went wrong. They ask themselves, how did we gain control of her? I find it simple; we used the three R’s; reading, responding relating . Read her moods, and be ready to respond in some manner, to anything she does, be it positive or negative. Relating in opposition some way every time the opportunity presents itself. But be cautious not to seem to be too negative, she would see through that instantly. Whether responding in kind or no, make sure she knows you will.

There are other methods to our sometimes madness, we have a way of controlling through humor. There’s a Chinese proverb that states: He who laughs last, last best of all. See the humor, but look for a deeper meaning.

Be aware of seemingly joking points made. There are literally thousand upon thousands of Black men who make a serious statement, in a joking manner. Again that's for two reasons, to spoon-feed her a serious a point, and second, to see how she’s going to react to it. We all know the type.

Making a case for the understanding of a Black man. To fully appreciate us is to understand us. Yet, one would need, to have their own head examine to ever getting involved in dealing with the complexities of the African American male. At times we’re are like the politicians who never takes a stand when he’s campaigning. We will say anything if we think it will help, that is in dealing with matters of the heart. We are non-confrontational, yet we can be very reactive if our significant others misinterpret our undeclared intentions and take a stand. Then there are times when we are standing fast on either a matter of principle or respect. We can be downright overpowering. And if our mate, so much as hint she doesn’t understand us, or she doesn’t understand our position. We go off. Now she’s totally confused, as why are we so all fired ready to articulate our problems now when she can’t get a straight answer about the depth of commitment to her. And in some cases actually questions her understanding. Huh?

5

A MUST For Black Men

For Black men: Most Black men feel they are in touch with their ladies feelings and emotions. I am no exception. I dare say how we would fare if things were put to the test. MUST stand here for Male Understanding and Sensitivity Test. This in no way is scientific; it merely highlights our ability or inability to communicate subliminally with each other, and points out, if we are really in touch. How does it work? That's the good part, all we need to do is answer five simple questions, it’s just that simple. After we've taken it, pass it along to the lady in our life, and let them evaluate us, ( please no platonic or chippee relationships. This is not for those relationships, which may be shaky, but truthful. Anyway, learn and prosper.

1

. I understand my woman, and feel I know what's important to her.

a

. _ Most Definitely

b.

_ Definite

c

. _Most of the times

d.

_Some of the times

e

. _What was the question?

2

. I'm very respectful of her feelings

a

. _ I strongly agree

b

. _ I agree

c.

_ To a certain extent, I agree

d

_ Not always

e

. _Ask my woman

3. I'm quick to empathize, and do an excellent job of seeing her point!

a

. _ Absolutely without a doubt

b

. _ Most of the times

c

. _Some of the times

d.

_ I know I should, but not always

e.

_ Man, I don't always have time to listen to her bitch?

4. When I make a mistake, or I am wrong, I'm quick to apologize.

a.

_ Always

b

. _Almost always

c

. _ Pretty much

d

. _Rarely do I make a mistake.

e

. _For what? Everybody make a mistake once in a while!

5. I'm thoughtful, kind and considerate, I'm the man!

a

. _You damn right

b.

__Most all of the times

c

. _ Not always

d.

_Depends on what it is.

e

. _ I don't have to answer this

For every 'a' answer score 15 points, plus 5 bonus points

For every 'b' answer score 10 points, plus 1 bonus point.

For every 'c' answer score 5 points

For every 'd' answer score 2.5 points

For every 'e' answer score .5 points

Tally your score:___

11.5 to 40;

you're a total chauvanist, go back to sleep we'll leave you a wake up call when the relationship is over.

41 to 55;

You're not much better. Your ego needs a break.

56 to 70;

You are probably old school, yet you need to join us in the new millennium.
71 to 84;
Y
ou're atypical male. You think you're handling your business, but your woman is there for the taking.

85 to 91;

Y

ou’re handling your business!

92 to 100;

Bro, you either received a wake up call a long time ago, or pushing up daisies.

Either way, we 86 to 95 ers want nothing to do with you.

6

A C A N For Women:

(Compatibility Aggregate Number)

6

A C A N For Women:

(Compatibility Aggregate Number)

The rules are simple, for every point she matches you, that should number should be deducted from your score. 0 would be the perfect score, that would represent there is no difference in opinions, on how you view the relationship.

Fellows, before you start to high-five yourselves, check out her score. The score we give ourselves is relatively meaningless and self-serving, until how we see then aggregate score. I did! And believe me, I got quite a surprise about the state of our relationship. Her answers didn't put me in the 5 to 10, that I placed myself, rather a dismal 55. 45 points above where I ranked our relationship. Our aggregate score, a disappointing. 55 Hmmmm! We've had a little work to do. Editor‘s note: (since I did that test, we’ve split up)

If your aggregate score is less, than 5 points; you do understand her wants and needs, and are sensitive to them. Your ability to connect with her, borders on telekinesis. You are the man among men! Congrats!

If your aggregate score falls between 0 to 10 points you possess, either all or most of those virtues women prefer in a man, your relationship is in rarefied.

If your aggregate score is between to 11 to 25, you are an above average couple! The two of you are for the most part on the same wavelength.

If your aggregate score is between 26 to 54 points, there are some issues the two of you need to work out, yet, it's all good.

If your aggregate score falls between, 55 to 74 points. It's time the two of you had a heart to heart talk.

If your aggregate score falls between, 75 to 95 points, there is a significant communication problem.

If your aggregate score falls between, 96 to 100, your relationship is living on borrowed time. One of you should start to look elsewhere for companionship. Mentally she has dismissed you, the only thing left is to do is physically do it, that is if you let her. You could be a caveman. It should be crystal clear by now, you possess, little if any of the virtues women prefer in a man. Good-bye!

Step III

There are two types of human animals that walks the face of the earth; the hunter and the hunted Either we are the hunter, or we are the hunted... Remember it is always open season on the hunted..

The Art Of Give And Take In Committed Relationships

1

Five Things That Are Never To Be Negotiated:

From this short chapter much will be given and hopefully much will be received.

When I think of negotiating or compromising, I envision men in white shirts sitting in a smoky room, around a table with their sleeves rolled up. Everything is on the table, and they are desperately trying to hammer out an agreement. Well, this is the table of life and much of what we have to deal with, is smoke in mirrors. In this instance, however, not every thing is on the table, and very well shouldn’t be.

When it comes to compromising and negotiating in a committed relationship, there are five things that’s never to be put on the table, subject to either compromising or negotiating. They are convictions, integrity, individual rights, self-identity, and principles. If you do, essentially you become a non person, with just one purpose and little hope of becoming anything else.

Convictions

: Convictions are our road map to truth and honest. If we have no convictions, we drift about aimlessly. It can be compared to a ship without a rudder. We go where ever the wind blows. It doesn’t matter if we are Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhist, or even atheist. Without convictions we’re none of those thing we’re supposed to be. For any to even suggest that our convictions are subject to either compromise, or negotiate is sheer lunacy.

Integrity

: Integrity is the life jacket for our self-esteem. Without integrity our self-esteem would sink to the bottom of the sea of unscrupulousness. It also helps keep our belief afloat. Oftentimes integrity is mistaken for principles. While they are closely related, they are different. Our integrity defines who we are as an individual. Our principles defines what we stand for. They are subject to change, depending on a number of things.

Rights:

Rights are something that is God given and man legislated. To relinquish any right is to dishonor God who ordained, to men who upheld them through various legislation and to the those who came before, that paid the price through humiliation, degradation, and sometime their own lives themselves.

Self-Identity

: In the name of peace and harmony in the relationship; women more than men, readily give up their true self-identity. Although it starts innocent enough, it’s the first step to an unequal relationship.

It’s easy to do, without considering the long range consequences of this action. The thought of what would happen if the relationship doesn’t work out, it never enters into the equation. Granted it’s always a good thing to see a relationship in a positive light. Not all of them are going to end in failure, but should something catastrophic happen, who’s left? Will it be someone whose an empty clone, or do we have a self-sustaining individual.

My mother was a poster child for these women. After my step-father died, she was virtually lost in his identity. She had assumed the role of a non person in the eyes of everyone, except friend and family. This is nothing against my step-father, nor is it a knock against mom. It was just the accepted practice for women of her day. Unfortunately for her; her day overlapped the day of the new woman. Albeit with a little assistance from those who loved her most, she reclaimed a portion of that identity.

Giving up self-identity, has little or nothing to do with either giving it up or retaining the maiden name: Yet, it’s a step. It’s about compromising who we are as individuals, and what we stand for as human beings. All in the name of holding down confusions and keeping peace in the family.

The time to establish one true identity, is in the development stage of the relationship. There’s an un-written rule that states: What we start with we must stay with. By conceding our self-identity, essentially what have done is become a stranger to us..

Principles

: Principles sound a lot like integrity, and scruples. It’s only fitting they should . Principle are at the core of our being. It won’t let us compromise neither our integrity, nor our self-worth. In spite of the rationale of others, compromise is not an option. It defines our personal code of conduct, that dictates our ethics. If there is any semblance it has been compromised way, our principle gnashes away at our sub conscious self until it has been fully restored

In every relationship there is a greater role, and there is a lesser role. Please, I did say a greater role and a lesser role. There is no gender attached to it. Those two roles, are what must be negotiated or compromised up front. It should not be assigned merely by either who makes the most money, or who wears the skirt in family. It should be defined by one with the greatest capacity for leadership. Anyone whom can’t manage their finances, doesn’t have good common sense principles, who doesn’t care about the future or has no purpose or promise, or morally bankrupt: That person should not be in the greater role. It’s acceptable for them to be the chief financial supporter, but not in the capacity of the greater role. (Please don't quote scripture and verse about what the Bible said). A man can be head of the household, but if he is unfit to run his household. Then he sins against himself as well as against God.

Here are ten steps every woman can use, whether she’s compromising or negotiating anything financial, physical or social matter with her mate. She can do it all without either denying sexual favors, or send him packing on a guilt trip. This also leaves him an out.

Be advised, if a woman doesn't allow a man to slip out of an opposing view gracefully, she setting herself up to do battles on many other fronts. Remember these are merely suggestions. There are no hard and fast rules. Please be aware, other than practice for the next time, nothing if anything will be accomplish if what's is being negotiated, is beyond the realm of possibilities. ( We can’t get blood from a turnip). This goes back to making a latitudinal assessment. Before engaging in any sort of negotiations that deals with matters of the heart, there should be a well thought out, and thought through plan. You must also have a clear objective. The reasoning behind this is just in case you’re sniped with frivolous questions, or run up against a firestorm of opposition. And to be able to calmly explain how you arrived at this point.

2

Compromising And Negotiating In Relationships

Ten Dos In Negotiating That Which You Want To Happen

1

Do signify your intentions. Try to get a feel as to what side of your issue he’s going to come down on.

2

Do ask for more than you want. Mix it with that which you would gladly concede. To increase your chances of succeeding, never let him know how anxious you are.

3

Do ask him to express his views. Never seem overbearing when soliciting his input. Allow him the opportunity to state an opposing view if he chooses to do so. (Note as long as you’re asking the questions you are basically in control.

4

Do appeal to his ego. Common sense often goes out of the window when the ego is involved.

5

Do restate your case, and steer clear of his pettiness. Draw a mental picture with him in it.

6

Do have him state his valid reasons for opposing you.

7

Do solicit an alternative solution. (a back up plan)

8

Do eliminate any hidden reason. Narrow it down to one by asking if the reason he has given is the only thing that stands in the way of agreeing to go along with you.

9

Do offer a trade off; show him how it can be done, even if it means giving up something of lesser importance.

10

Do appeal to his human side, and have him offer his solution. Place him in a position, to come over to your way of thinking without losing face.

3

Ten Don’ts In Compromising Which You Don’t Want To Happen

1

Don’t ask a lot about the details, but a lot about the benefit and why questions. Get to the bottom line and understand the underlying reasons.

2

Don’t depend upon a sense of logic, take the pulse, test the water. Get a feel for the sense of urgency, and turn it to an advantage.

3

Don’t pretend to understand if you don’t. Go into a stall mode of indecisiveness.

4

Don’t just go along. Play the devil's advocate. Drop the hammer; nitpick his reason.

5

Don’t rush your answer. Ask them to sleep on it, if it’s not pressing. Or take a few minutes to think about it if there’s a time constraint.

6

Don’t put yourself in his position, use reverse psychology, put him in yours.

7

Don’t give away your position until you fully understand his reasoning. Show reluctant signs even if you’re considering giving in.

8

Don’t concede without concessions.

9

Don’t say yes without justifying your reason to.

10

Don’t say yes if it violates, convictions rights integrity or principles; you'll live to regret it.

Caution: The first person who blinks loses!

Step IV

One act is worth a thousand intentions....

Confucius

1

Recipe Of Relationships That Spells Disaster

Well Meaning Unhealthy Abusive And Dysfunctional:

Pastor, Pastor, Caveman Calvin, Whimpering Willie, Bowel Optic Bobby, Foreign Foreigner, Married Martin, and B C Bernard

There are many other types of relationships that exist between, Black men and Black Women with unlimited potential. Then there are those, that leaves one scratching their heads, with little or no potential for being anything. Yet the more of them will fall with the typical category. With the typical category, there are a few that requires a great of soul searching and value judgment. They are either going nowhere do nothing relationships. This isn't about rapping certain one, while leaving others out, it’s a wide range from the sublime to the ridiculous.

. Of course most relationships are what we make them or allow them to be. And anytime we find ourselves in them, we have the choice of getting out. Each person must make a value judgment as what staying in means to them.

There’s an old euphemism that states; two company and three's crowd. Sometimes two a crowd if the relationship isn’t going anyplace. For a healthy relationship, however, other than divine intervention, Pastor, Pastor don’t belong.

Relationship with Caveman Calvin is by far the most dangerous. One that will at some point may require Divine intervention because it has danger of a different kind. Not only is it physical but spiritually destructive.

And in spite of the well meaning, and the noble intentions of a number of these relationships, they don’t get a clean bill of health. They are cancerous, and to the relationship they are deadly. By the same token the destructive relationship can be deadly to the individual as well as the relationship. All relationships usually start with the best intentions, and slowly drift into what the eventually become. The enigma about all of this, there are many who would come within a hundred yards of illegal drug use, yet they're in a theses types of relationships

Unlike Pastor, Pastor, whose intentions are well meaning. A number of the other relationships have one other thing in common; these are at best shaky.

2

Pastor, Pastor

: That which make us strong also makes us weak and vulnerable. It is my sincere belief many Black men have lost hope in religion, and the Black church in particular. It has been because of the so called messengers of God, and the pandering message which they preach to black women about us..

Most Black men feel, they are out of control, therefore he has no one to turn to directly, but the Creator. To do that, we doesn’t have to go to church, to listen to, ‘pastor’ denigrate us to our women. This also has left many of us feeling, he is out of control. He basically made it seem God stands between us and our woman. Who can compete with God, or as far as that goes, who would want to except Satan.

We’re completely flustered at the pastor’s message most times . Although we’re quick to give him an amen, but that’s out of sheer intimidation. When pastor speaks: Pastor is like E F Hutton to most Sisters. They listen and take heed, as if it was God Himself speaking directly to them. What they fail to realize is these, so called messengers of God, can be nothing short of errand boys and girls for Satan. A number of them purchase their sermons from professional sermon writers.

To cite an example or two one has to look no further that Jim Jones in Jonestown, Guyana, and David Koresch in Waco Texas. These so called messengers took a lot of folk with them. Yet, those come along once in a blue moon. There are others who’s transgressions are not as obvious. It’s happening in pulpits all across America, where the power of the pulpit, is used to take advantage of women, spiritually sexually, and morally.

As Believers we perceive them as the ones whose the lighthouse keeper of God' written word. It is to be our beacon, that if we have lost our way , it will guide us past the hazards of iniquities, to safety of salvation. But as most who attend churches will attest to, the lighthouse keeper’s beacon is out and many of these hazards of iniquities are found in the pews, and the senior choirs on Sunday morning. These people are the same ones whose all too quick to sit in the seat of judgment and pass along erroneous information, on how God says we should handle the affairs our relationships with Black women.

Jesus, (P B U H) was sent by God to reestablish the law and make that which had been unlawful lawful. I can find no place in Biblical text, where He set Himself up as judge and jury. He did rebuke, but he did not judge. Not even Paul who by many is considered architect of Christianity judged. Yet, every Sunday morning, Black men all over America is castigated vilified, and some even judged, by those who would seek to control their relationship with their wives, girlfriends, or significant others.

Is there any wonder why we are turning to other religions, such as Islam, Buddhism, and Splinter sects. At least those faiths seek ways to bring about unity between us (Black men and Black women). I know this, because, I was raised a Christian, studied Catholicism, Judaism, and considered Buddhism, but eventually converted to Islam. Being Muslim, it is very defined on how women are to be treated not subject to interpretation.

Many of today's pastors, ministers, prophets, teachers, theologians are so bold, they actually put words in the mouths of our women, exactly what to tell their mates. (Granted, that’s not all some of them would like to put in her mouth, but for now, lets stick to the point.)

Any theologian, that does sins against his own soul, and in the day of Judgment, it shall testify against him. He has a made a value judgment, base on what he thinks, as opposed to what he knows. God and only God knows a man’s heart. Sure we can speculate, but that’s precisely what it is, speculation. I have studied the Holy Bible, The Torah, and The Holy Qu'ran, perhaps I’ve missed it, but I didn’t read any place where He set any messenger as up as judge and jury. Not even Solomon, whom He Blessed with an abundance of wisdom.

When conflict arises between couples, if they can’t resolve it, then two mediators should be called in; one from her side of the family and to her choosing, and one to his. If the matter still hasn't been resolved, it’s okay to call pastor in, not as a judge but a messenger of God, to make a last ditch effort to reconcile their difference.

I have yet to meet a man who could lay aside all of his biases, all of his perceptions, and his ego, and could sit in the seat of judgment and be impartial, in the face of his religious doctrines.

Before I am condemned to death, by lethal injections, there are ministries, that caters to women emotional needs, without pandering to their psychological ones. Without naming names they know who they are.

Why most pastor pastors can’t totally be impartial. It’s because in some cases, the women who come to them with their problems are his largest financial contributors. Either that of his or her, churches, and or their ministries, sometimes both. It’s the, ‘don’t bite the hand that feed the mouth’ syndrome.

Most men would not object to a pastor getting into their affairs, if it had reached that point. And, if they used conventional wisdom.

I dated women that we had a great chance of having a wonderful loving relationship. Because of pastor, pastor, it never got off the first floor. She was constantly telling me pastor said this, or pastor said that, I started to be really concerned, if she wasn’t a ship without a rudder. Every time this gust of wind got up on Sunday on blew in one direction, she would go in that way. The next Sunday, he would blow in another direction, she would drift in that direction. It made me start to wonder, if I was seeing her, or seeing pastor, pastor. It was such a relief when we broke up. Because I was Muslim, she couldn’t fathom where I was coming from religiously. She had no concept of what Islam was about, nor did she care to learn about me, and why I converted. That couple with pastor telling her we were unequally yoked! I didn’t know we were considered a couple of oxen.

When these relationships were over, it was then I could see. They were being taught salvation, but indoctrination, and quite well at that.

This isn’t an indictment against men of the cloth, it’s a statement of fact. While, I’m sure their intentions are honorable, they are men, subject to human miscalculations. I think in their zeal to do righteous deeds, oftentimes they forget, they are to deliver a messenger of God, instead of a messenger from God. At the rate most are going, by the time Jesus returns ( P B U H), there will be nothing left to do. They will have declared who will be cast into hell, and who shall live in paradise.

3

Caveman Calvin:

Not only is this Calvin a mental abusive, but has a knack for busting a woman up side the head. Or the p c thing to say is; he has a propensity for acts of violence. This type of relationship, and have deadly consequences. He knows no boundaries, in what he will and will not do. His ultimate aim is control, and intimidation, by any means necessary to him. This gentleman is to be avoided at all cost. He represents a direct threat to his mate welfare and safety. This relationship could most be compared to hitching a ride on the Titanic. Pain can't bring us pleasure, but our pleasure can bring her pain.

4

Bitter Bobby:

Ole Bobby has never had a positive thing to say about anyone, including his mate. His mate long ago has bought in his theory, the world is a shitty place to live, and that every one is out for the buck. It's the reason he hangs on to his money so tightly. His trust is limited to in God We Trust, and no one else including his mate, and visa versa. Their relationship is one of convenience, neither one of the two, wants to take it upon themselves, to find someone more suitable. Both parties, have low self-esteem, and usually take the path of least resistance.

5

Mama's Boy Melvin: Melvin, usually has a good heart, it's that his heart belong to mama, and mama isn't going to let just any woman walk in and take her baby's heart, especially a Jezebel. like you it. The reason she refers to him as her baby, he will never fully allowed to grow up. He has never had a purpose, or taken responsibility of his own life. Generally most mama's boy, are snobbish in their relationship with their mates. She's always being compared to mama. Getting into this type of relationship means having the family as a mate.

6

Foreign Federico

: There are many cross-cultural relationships. Most have not done well, for that very reason. The ones that have the least potential for surviving are the ones where the male comes from countries in Africa, Middle East, and even places in the Far East. The places where women have little or no voice in terms of how the household is to be ran.

Few women in the west are ready to relinquish those rights for the sake of having a harmonious relationship. Often times they are from societies where polygamy is an accepted practice. As if it isn't enough, trying to maintain a relationship with one man, but with his other women as well.

7

Married Martin:

Any man that needs more than one partners for sexual validation, is void of all knowledge of his own masculinity.

There are millions upon millions of ole Martins. This is one of those value judgment things. The relationship is a goner from Jump Street. Martin is in it, strictly for the sex. Given, he realizes before he drop his draws, he has to drop his hand, (contribute financially), to maintain that status quo. Yet, in spite of the ticklish relationship, he's somewhat comfortable in. what usually what drives Martin out of the relationship is when he comes to realize he has lost control over the affair. He usually starts doing the moon walk, until he’s far enough away to moves on to the next.

8

B C Bernard,

Ladies Man extraordinaire: Heaven help the woman that connects with Bad Credit Bernard. He will do more than bankrupt her heart. He will put her financially in the poor house, in ways she may not suspect. He owns nothing, he owes everybody, and he pays nobody. 
 Don't get me wrong; his heart is in the right place. It's that he has always had a difficult time managing his finances. To finance companies, this guy is a bandit. He's never in one place long enough for them to locate him again. 
    This is where the unsuspecting woman comes in. The boy is a charmer; he could talk the sweet out of sugar. He talks in terms of we, instead of I. When he speaks off settling down in a serious relationship, there's sincerity in his voice, a sparkle in his eye and the love of Jesus in his heart. To the sleepwalking sister, it will bring crocodile tears to her eye when he talks about all of the things, he would like to do for her. And how he is going to do it, as soon as he gets himself straight, or the White man gives him a chance. He's also quick to blame his past misfortunes on the man, however, he would not let him hinder him from success this time; he has learned from previous mistakes, and vows he'll never travel down the same road. He also tells everyone, he has finally found a good woman in her. He takes great pride in parading her around among his friends and associates. As a rule; the boy can throw down sexually. He's as smooth as silk and as sly as a fox. His flair for social graces is only matched by his gentlemanly personality. In other words, this Brother is a regular prince charming, driving his mama's car. Your every wish is his command, as long as it cost less than twenty dollars. First thing he wants to do is purchase something nice, for her. If she put it on her credit account, he'll pay for it. Once he has paid for that, he need now a favor from her; his old car hasn't been running right, and it doesn't make sense to keep sinking money into something he doesn't own. He'd like to get a car of his own, but his credit sucks. If she could help him out, by co-signing at some," buy here, pay here" lot. Like with the ring he'd make the payments, and pay it off early. You would also be helping him reestablish credit.. Besides with his own car, he wouldn't always have to be driving her car putting miles on it. Her first thought is, 'no way'. But as time passes, she starts to see he's really trying, maybe co-signing for something not too expensive would be okay. He has never paid attention, much less anyone he owes. That's why he has a non-published telephone number and he keeps moving every six months or so. The first thing that happens when she has agreed to is, he doesn't want something cheap. He wants something that fits his personality. The moment he gets her on the hook for that car, old B C Benny starts to exert a little authority. He slips back into his old custom ways, bragging to the fellas. Then he suddenly starts spending less and less time with her. He's out styling and profiling again. In the meantime, the relationship becomes strained, then the car breaks, he has no money to get it repaired, and the dealer where it was purchase, won't work with him. He's got the ultimate solution. He's been paying on the car long enough and well enough; he can get one on his own. He convinces her to let him give her car back, and that because she's only the co-signer, it won't show up as a repo on her credit, he thinks. He tells it's either that, or he need to borrow money gets it fixed. Now she's in a quandary, she can't afford to help him have the car repaired, keep up the payments, on hers, she relents. And he rides around in his new car, with her not being on the title, she has no control over his movement, in the meantime he's talking smack to her. She's bent; therefore to out do him she decides to upgrade her car. Everything is fine until they pull her credit. The sales person tells her she has a repo. She gets defensive, with the sales person because she knows she has always paid her bills on time. And the car she co-signed for was given back. The finance company didn't come and get it. Besides she was only a co-maker. The salespersons informs her the lenders don't make a distinction between voluntary, or involuntarily! Not only that, but she was actually the buyer, he was the co-buyer. Then it hits he; she's been had. Old Bad Credit Bernard has struck again. But worry not, Old B C is heading toward a F P D (first payment default), hell be back, and sooner than she thinks!

Step V

Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free....

John 8:32

Reconnecting And Reconciling

1

Good Advice For Men

: When God loaned us women as our companions not as our slaves. He knew He had blessed her with great wealth in beauty, majesty and magnificence; therefore the only safe place He could store her valuables were within the confines of her thoughts. A woman's true value lies within her imagination.

   The things I have learned about women over the years of experience are enough to fill a volume of encyclopedias from A to Z. Unfortunately this is neither the place nor, the venue for all of them. In the early autumn of my years, I have shared them, in hopes they will be a blessing to those brothers, who have not yet reach the Spring of their lives. Hopefully this will help undo, what, I believe television and movies, has done. The two mediums have had a hand in exploiting our relationships. It appears there's a new show that premiers every week, giving advice about our relationships. And for the most part, other than their immediate aesthetic value, they only serve to widen the gap between us.

    As people of color, we've always been able to work out our differences from within and without those who view us as, you people. That which makes us appear weak is also our greatest strength. Our common bond: Each other. Hopefully the tips and wisdom to follow will go along way, in bring us together in unison. I think the seemingly troubled waters between us should be as the motion of the ocean and cause our hearts to move as one.

2

Something To Remember
 
1 We are not the property of each other; we are a loan from our Creator; handle with care, ,He wants us back

2

. Through one woman, God has given us many pleasures; our prophets, our parents, our children, ourselves; relish in all that He has given.

3

When others offer their opinion listen, it might be God trying to tell us something; take note.

4

The road to understanding is paved with patience and compassion! The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step.

5

If actions are worth their weight in gold, and talk is penny cheap, then many men are dirt poor; talk the talk, walk the walk.

6.

There will always be things that which bring sadness to one’s heart and tears to their eyes, grieve not for them, but with them; then you both can move on.

7

One who knows how to talk to a others gets their attention every time. One who knows how to treat other, keeps it; actions speak louder than words.

8

If experience is our greatest teacher, then love is our greatest experience; learn by experience.

9

At the end of each day;ask He who created you for forgiveness, then forgive yourself, forgive others, and forget everything else: Tomorrow is a new day start it with a clean slate.

10

Never think, I've finally found a good person, but a good person has finally found me; cherish in the thought.

11

We will accept others, more for their character, than their characteristics; character is who we are, characteristics, are who we tend to be. Be ourselves and we will see.

12

When all else fails in trying to understand another; admit we don't know how; then shut up and listen, we just might learn something. Well be glad we did.

13

When we sow the seeds of patience and virtue, we often reap the harvest of love and respect; we reap what we sow.

14

It takes two to build a relationship, but only one to bring it down. Ask ourselves are we builders or what?

15

Inside of every one there's another looking on; we’d better acknowledge and be introduced; the best surprise is no surprise.

16

Never ask the lips to reveal, that which her heart wants concealed: The heart knows secrets, the lips shouldn't revealed.

17

Let our hearts, souls or minds, decides our course of actions, but when forced to choose; follow the mind; It will protect your heart and soul.

18

A man's opinion is the most worthless thing he has to offer, until it is something positive; then it's priceless.

19

Life is a journey: There are many twists and turns. Don't get rattled, take it in stride. Let instincts be your companion, and compassion be your guide: Relax, and enjoy the ride.

20

We’re not going to always say what is right, no more than we will always do what is right, but if we just recognize, apologize; we'll all get along!

3

Something Never To Forget:

1

Bad relationship doesn't last forever; they only seem that way; seeds of disaster contain, an equal or greater benefit.

2

We can't do any more than another lets him do, not unless we forces them to do so; sexual battery is still a crime.

3

Know the difference between our purpose and our promise: It's our key to greater understanding.

4

Before we makes love to one’s body, he first should make love their mind; it’s pure ecstasy.

5

A man without guidance or direction is like a ship without a rudder; at the mercy of the wind.

6

How can a man know where is going if he doesn’t know where he’s been; with out self knowledge we’re like to repeat our mistakes!

7

Always be truthful in dealing with others, they will repay in kind; honesty is always the best policy.

8

Any one that chooses to allow another to use them, for the sole purpose of sex, or self-gratification, can not value themselves any higher than the ones that uses them. Birds of a feather!

9

When we look for faults in women, we often overlook excellence: look for the good!

10

Our mind like, a parachute can't do its job, until it's open. Open-mindedness is the ripcord!

11

Every story has three sides; your side, their side and the truth; for a clearer understanding; listen to the other two.

12

The difference between a fool and the foolish; the foolish accepts a mistake and learns a lesson from it. The fool figures the mistake was lesson, therefore

13

Every one has a heart of gold; yet it takes a real prospector to discover it.

14

If God isn’t petty why should men be; Don't sweat the small stuff, it will take take care of itself

15

One action, or ten thousand words, which is greater? Figure it out!

16

Anger takes away our passion, and our passion gives us our pleasure. Think twice be nice... no passion, no pleasure

17

When women don't want us, it’s foolish to think we can make her;

18

Never let our little head choose for our big head; it makes awfully small choices.

19

Although it's hard going in, but it's harder coming out; if we don't remember any other advice we got from dear old dad, never forget this one! If you need that one explained, then you're too young to be in any type of relationship.

20

Just because women are the trees that bear our fruit, there's a right time to prune them.

4

Key To Reconnecting: Error of our ways

Because of either, hearsay or previous experience, a substantial number of women, I have discussed this sensitive subject with, feel a man is out to get, whatever he wants, then move on. It doesn't matter how. These aren't just male bashers that feel that way. Most were hard working well-meaning individuals. My late Aunt Pang for one, comes to mind. (I used to think she and my mother were poster children for these men). She used to tell all of the young ladies in our community;  all a man wants to do is crawl on, drag off and leave." And judging by what I hear from many of my close friends and associates, I'm inclined to agree.. Yet, I ask one question of women every where: If you feel you expect more from your relationship, why will you go along with accepting less? Are you waiting for a religious experience on the road to someplace, and the relationship will be divinely transcended? Do a self esteem check!

It’s quite possible you would stop being pawns for these same men over and over. After all women who harbor the intense feelings of frustration in their relationship, do so without ever seeing what's happening to them. They fail to realize women like themselves keep selecting from the same recycle bin, and keep recycling them. As a man I've seen how many of these, 'go no where, do nothing relationships', could've been avoided: By going into them expecting this man to be different, yet, be prepared for the same old bull’ from his mouth. I guess it’s just a part of our nature to look for the best in other, and overlook the need in ourselves. Conventional wisdom tell us not everyone deserves the benefit of doubt, yet, we give it to them anyway, holding on to hope against hope.

I find if many women close her heart and open her mind, she far less likely to have to deal with sub par relationships. In my travels through life I've learned though, a woman heart is her strength, and her vulnerability. A classic example is anytime she, thinks a dashing handsome, or seemingly successful man is remotely interested in her. She gets far ahead of herself. Her common sense goes out the window. She's over come by the vanity of luxury, love and desire. She develops severe scotoma, and her reticular activator malfunctions. Most, completely lose focus, and turn mindless acts into self-validation.

In spite of our differences, we’re still the best friend each other has. 
 I would be somewhat remiss if I didn't take this opportunity to apologize, to those ALL women who are present and who are absent, to those who are old and to those who are young, for the times I didn't speak up when a number of my Brothers were going up side their heads. The reasons were both out of fear, and interference: Never interfere with a man and his woman when the are having a spat, for fear the two of them are likely to turn on you!. It would also be egotistical of me not to apologize for the time I spent in "the life." with those women of whom I exploited. Though the focus on this column is on Black women, to all women everywhere; you are, my sisters, my daughters, my lover, my best friends, my confidants, as well.

After all has been said and done; we must take self-inventory of that which is of value, then examine our relationship with others. We must embrace the strictest of principles; we may not always say what is right, but we will always try doing what is right. Granted there are going to be good, dysfunctional, and destructive relationships. Remember: Good relationships are to be cherished. While dysfunctional relationships are to be transformed, and the destructive ones are to be condemned. Getting into an intimate relationship most of time is very easy, all is needed are two willing participants. But on the other hand, getting out can be hell to pay, because it also takes two to bow out gracefully. I've always believed, it should cost ten thousand dollars to meet a woman. Then it should be raised to a fifty thousand non-refundable deposit. That's, in case we break up with her, or do something to cause her to break up with us, (we're known for that) It should be raised to hundred thousand dollars to get married, and ten dollars for a divorce. And for obvious reasons, more thought would go into the process of selecting a mate. Most Black women could go out on weekends, and really have a good time, with out being stalked at the club. Of course in foresight, even that may not work; because the first thing we would do, is get organized labor involved. Then there would be unions, i e; playas unions, married men unions, cavemen union, etc. Some where along the way, while the union is negotiating our new contract, a few scabs would cross the picket lines or slip back into our old accustom ways, and women would not trust us. Of course, with that, the government would have to step in, because anti trust is in violation of the law. Anytime the government get involved, in resolving family matters, we know where that leave women; on welfare.

A Man’s Pledge

Before I attempt to love you, I will first learn to love me

And once I have transcended the physical sense

I will work on the finer aspects of our relationship

As there is much I find I need to learn or relearn

In the art of love, and loving with understanding

I pledge with all my heart if you'll be patient with me

Love will do its part and make us complete as we should be

 

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