Here’s a dose of reality: Your boyfriend of ten years probably won’t be marrying you. To hell with his analogies about waiting to test drive before making the purchase. A lady isn’t a vehicle–she’s a lady. How many times will a man be allowed to taste the fish before throwing it back into the sea? People don’t get PhDs prior to preschool. Privileges are escalated when vows are elevated. Expecting a single lady to act married is like refusing to sign a lease and not paying a dime of rent, but expecting a house key, fridge full of food, plus a few luxury cars in the garage. People have to pay to play and the price for a woman’s whole heart, body, being and mind is marriage. A woman’s entirety is a luxury! There should be certain benefits reserved and boundaries set for marriage. You determine what those boundaries are. The ball might be in a man’s court, but a lady is the referee. If a woman doesn’t call the fouls and regulate the game, we might play right through it. This is exactly why you shouldn’t act married if you’re not. You’re not a wife – you’re an unpaid intern.
Don’t play dumb and don’t turn a blind eye because he’s beautiful and his stroke is good. Hold your partner accountable. Stop letting average Joes tell you how busy they are. The president is busy and he takes his wife on monthly dates. You really don’t have to settle for the foolishness you settle for in a relationship. Stop allowing it! Dates don’t stop after dating. Anything valuable requires maintenance or it’ll fall apart. Since we like to compare you to cars, we should know best that if you expect something to perform well, you must treat it well. Well, the same goes for relationships. The more you put into it, the more you get out of it.
Ultimately, dating rules are yours. Whatever you decide, ensure you’re being treated the way you want to be treated. But if you don’t hear, “I’ve got your back,” “I believe in you,” and “I’m proud of you” in your relationship, you might be in the wrong one. A lady’s support makes a man want to take over the world. And our support makes you want to do the same. Not just financial support. He might’ve bought you a sexy car, but without your own drive, you’re not that sexy. We’re attracted to ambition, and relationships work best when couples are supportive of each other’s goals.
Don’t put your purpose on hold for a man. Lust has a capacity. Love is bottomless. You eventually come down from the high of something solely steamy and desire something fulfilling. You adjust to lust. A spark isn’t enough to ignite the flame to cause the fire that burns throughout a hot relationship. At this point, sex isn’t enough. Being handsome and funny aren’t enough. Being equally yoked is the goal. A woman at 40 might think of having children; a man at 40 might think of dating children. Relationship evaluations are a necessary tool to determine if both of your standards are being met and if you’re where you want to be. Before you try to fix anything, sit back and decide if it’s even worth fixing. If your relationship doesn’t inspire you and you don’t inspire it, you’re wasting each other’s time. It’s unwise to continue dating if standards go unmet. It’s mature to discontinue dating if you’ve come to the realization that you’re ill equipped for the journey.
If your relationship consists of consistently fighting to make it work, you’re probably in the wrong one.
– Enitan Bereola, II
Bereola is the author of the new best-selling book, “GENTLEWOMAN: Etiquette for a Lady, from a Gentleman” and the award-winning/best-seller, “BEREOLAESQUE: The Contemporary Gentleman & Etiquette book for the Urban Sophisticate.” He’s the go-to ghostwriter, columnist, public speaker and etiquette impresario for our generation. Visit: Bereolaesque.com, Twitter & Facebook for more info. Follow him on Instagram @bereolaesque.