Let me preface this blog by saying, obviously I’m not GOD, and therefore I can’t speak in absolutes. But I do have a few women I know that are pushing their way, slowly but surely, into the cat lady club.
Now I don’t think there’s anything wrong with the single ladies club.
That’s VERY different than the cat lady club though.
The single ladies club is full of women ENJOYING the freedom that they wouldn’t have if they agreed to be someone’s wife and mother.
I get that. Some days I fantasize that I’m in the club too. LoL
Whereas the cat lady club is full of single women that were kind of just FORCED to stay single. They lacked healthy and successful relationships. So nothing ever became long term and they kind of just decided to accumulate cats instead of trying anymore.
At least, this is how I see it in my head. Like becoming a cat lady is this thing we happen upon. NOT intentional.
Well I don’t want to see you become the creepy lady at 45 with 7 cats that no one wants to hang out with because you’re always covered in cat hair.
No, really, if this is you at 45 I’m never coming over.
So today I’m shedding some light on some norms that I see within the single community that spell tragedy for relationships and start the fitting process for your creepy cat lady sweater.
Because they’re always in sweaters right?
Give it a gander and grow baby grow!
- You Have Non-Transferable & Unpackable Baggage
Having baggage isn’t why people can’t get into successful relationships.
When Chris and I met not only did we have baggage but we still had active ties to some baggage.
Now some would consider that an immediate deal breaker.
Let’s be honest though; if you’re over 18, and have been in a relationship, YOU HAVE BAGGAGE!
He and I didn’t think it was a reason to ignore enjoying each other.
Before I get into more of this, let me circle back to “A Healthy Me Precedes A Healthy We” because some of you will read this and think I’m saying to jump into a relationship with a person that’s unhealthy.
I. AM. NOT.
But having baggage and being unhealthy are NOT the same thing.
When you get a cold you probably have a stuffy nose, cough, fever, etc. Well as your cold cycle is ending you might still have a slight cough you’re fighting off but all the other stuff is gone.
Well that’s what baggage can be like sometimes.
Not all baggage is newly packed and being clung to for dear life.
Sometimes you’ll meet someone taking out that last article of clothing and RUN instead of giving them time to toss it out, latch the bag closed, and put it away.
This is why it’s important to assess the TYPE of baggage you both are carrying. As well as the impact it’s having on each of you.
Are you/they overall healthy; just kicking the tail end butt of that cold? Or full-fledged SICK while still going out in the snow with flip flops and shorts on?
You’ve heard me say before that it doesn’t matter how you carry your burden, the fact that you’re carrying it at all is the problem. And that’s true because eventually all your burdens should be released. But until you DO release, HOW and the TYPE of baggage you’re carrying matters.
Your baggage needs to be transferable.
You can’t covet and hide your baggage in hopes of duping your partner into a relationship. Even if you hide the baggage, it’s impacting the way you live your life. That impact could be positive but usually it’s extremely negative; especially when you’re partner doesn’t even know you have it.
When Chris and I met we were both going through our divorces. We’d been walked out on by our spouses who were now pursuing relationships with other people. We were full time parents to children that our co-givers of life didn’t care to be actively involved with. I was dealing with a foreclosure. He was just getting to know his father. I mean…..BAGGAGE!
But he and I pursued friendship with each other anyway.
If nothing else, we knew the other one understood what we had going on.
We decided to let that baggage be transferable. To bear the load WITH each other instead of hiding what we were dealing with. We were honest with each other and it’s worked in our favor.
Your baggage has to be unpackable (yes I made that word up)
Your partner KNOWING about your baggage ISN’T ENOUGH. You’ve gotta be willing to do the WORK to move beyond it. You need to be willing to look at that bag and ask yourself “What am I gaining by holding onto you?” and realize the answer is “Nothing!”
I was open with Chris about how my ex-husband was, my abortions, my depression, but I didn’t tell him about the rapes or molestation in the first months of us getting to know each other. I figured I’d shared enough. I waited almost 3 years before he learned about the molestation and almost 4 before he knew about the rapes. And BOY was my marriage impacted by both me hiding AND telling.
Anyone that has lived through sexual trauma can attest to “triggers.” My husband would touch me in ways that made me recoil. And for years he just felt pushed away and shunned by me. Being raped by someone I was in a relationship with taught me some very wrong things about sex. Now Chris was suffering those consequences. He was dealing with my resentments about sex and couldn’t understand why I didn’t love him enough.
Whoa, NOT the message I wanted to send. Chris is absolutely Gods love for me manifest through man. The last thing I wanted him to feel was unloved. When I finally had the courage to tell him everything that had happened his empathy and understanding kicked in full time.
What if I had been determined to hold my stuff and not unpack it? It would have probably left irreparable damage on our relationship.
By allowing my baggage to be transferrable my partner has been able to bear the load with me, to love me past myself, and through my stuff. And it even opened him up to unpack some of his bags with me.
NOTHING about Chris or I makes sense when we look at the way we’re told to date. But because we were willing to allow our baggage to be both TRANSFERABLE and UNPACKABLE we’ve been able to achieve great success in our relationship.
- No One is On Your Level #QueenStatus
SOOOOO many women post about how being single isn’t a reflection of them but rather a reflection of the fact that they refuse to settle for anything less than what they’re worth as women.
And you shouldn’t.
But a LOT of women that make statements like that are just too damn focused on their WANTS versus their NEEDS.
When I got married to my first husband all I WANTED was to be someone’s wife so I could have some freaking babies! I hadn’t thought for a moment about what I actually NEEDED in order to experience a healthy and happy relationship.
As I was going through the divorce process and conjuring up this Mr. Amazing *that legitimately was his nickname* I began to consider what it was that I actually needed.
This was (very loosely; it’s been 6 years) my SUPER SHORT list:
He had to love Kalani as his own child
He had to love & live for Christ
He had to be a man of integrity & honesty that I could communicate with
He had to be monogamous
That was it. That was ALL that I needed in order to experience emotional/mental health and wellbeing within my relationship. For me, all the other things, as long as we had these foundational things, could be birthed in him and our relationship as necessary.
Ask yourself what’s on your list? Are they things that would negatively impact your emotional/mental health if your partner didn’t have them?
He needs to have a six pack, be 6 feet, and 200 lbs Yeah, doesn’t make the cut! You can hit the gym together.
He needs to own his own business Yeah, great goal but probably not going to lead to tears at night if he doesn’t!
Get over yourself and what you want your relationship to LOOK like! Build your list based on what you need it to FEEL like and actually BE.
Of course I’m not saying as a thriving small business owner that you should date the guy that’s 40 and living in his parent’s basement because he doesn’t want to work. No, he isn’t on your level. But stop using that as an excuse to ignore viable options.
A Queen doesn’t date anything less than a Prince (soon to inherit his throne) or King. So we must have standards. But if every potential partner is a peasant, ask yourself why peasants keep making it to your court to begin with? #selfcheck
- All Men (insert negative stereotype)
I feel like I shouldn’t even have to say this, but I do.
No matter what the negative stereotype is IT ISN’T TRUE.
To say all men ANYTHING is just……*sigh* it’s ignorant. And it’s also ensuring that all the men you encounter will fit that bill.
When I started having real boyfriends ALL of them cheated on me. Which is really no big whoop in high school. But when I became an adult, dated, and eventually married it was the same thing. I easily could have said that EVERY guy cheats.
If you ask, some guys will actually support this train of thought.
I even encountered another stalker type. Suuuper creepy! I could have said all guys are jealous and crazy.
But I chose to believe that there was hope. Just because that had been my common experience didn’t mean it had to always be my experience. I did a lot of self-work and I believed that I could have what I needed in a man. And I spoke it.
You can have all the lists you want about your ideal mate. If you’re still believing and saying things contrary you’re going to get what you believe and say.
- Be a man of commitment
“No one is ever satisfied in dating. They just want to keep moving from person to person. They don’t want commitment they just want new stuff all the time!”
Welp, don’t be shocked if you keep meeting guys that DON’T WANT COMMITMENT.
Don’t broad brush paint them and then be shocked when all the ones within your direct line of sight are the same color.
We have more control over what we have happen in our lives than some of us give ourselves credit for. If you’re over 30 and single and don’t WANT to be……there is no one to examine other than YOU.
It always starts with self. YOU are the common denominator.
Not having anyone on your level is bologna. All men (any negative stereotype) is nonsense. Your baggage being too much is hogwash. None of these things are a hindrance to your ideal relationship. YOU are.
Don’t be a cat lady!
Believing for your limitless lives. #limitlesslife #meandthenwe