Avoiding Avoidable Breakups: Don’t Set Up Unrealistic Expectations

Image

We’ve all been there: You meet someone you think is amazing and that brings out the best in you. They make you laugh, they take care of you, and they make you feel special. But somewhere along the way, things change – fast. Suddenly, this person becomes distant, neglectful, and you don’t feel so special anymore. In fact, you feel downright invisible to them. The relationship’s passion fizzles out. Then, sadly, so does the relationship. Next thing you know, you’re crying in your bedroom with a hollow feeling in your chest and a newly open schedule. Except, each evening for the next six months is reserved for heavy sobbing and the occasional outing with girlfriends to do some public sobbing after a few drinks.

Where did you go wrong? Things were going so well. At least, you thought so. For a while, they were perfect. What changed? The answer is usually pretty simple. A lot of things did – only you didn’t notice, because they were the little things. Usually, it’s the small
things people do that draw you together. Things like taking your car in for an oil change, going to family dinners, or even taking out the garbage when they see you’re busy. Think back to the beginning of your relationship. Weren’t you both so cute? He would call you all the time just to hear your voice. She would make you breakfast in the morning to impress you with her culinary expertise (alright, fine, they were just eggs.) There was a song and dance in order to woo each other, and obviously it worked. You won the grand prize: Them. Then what? Things got comfortable. He didn’t care about your voice as much. Phone calls became less frequent. She got lazy and stopped making breakfast. Cereal boxes began appearing in the pantry instead. We do all these adorable things for one another to peak each other’s interests, and then once we do, we switch off the charm. Boom. Comfort Zone Land.
Population: 2, soon to be 1.

The fact is that we have a problem as people, and here’s what it is: We do things to get the other person that we realistically will not
keep doing later on. None of those actions were organically our own and so they can only happen for so long before they stop completely. Then the other person is left wondering what went wrong. Really, the only thing that went wrong is we lied from the first date. We lied about liking phone calls, texting, dates to the movies, action flicks, classic cinema, poetry – lie after lie after lie. It’s no wonder we think, “how could they change so much in such a short amount of time?”
Maybe they didn’t change. Maybe this is who they always were, only they were too busy sweeping us off our feet for us to notice.

We need to be more authentic in our approach. If this guy likes a woman who sings, don’t run off and get vocal lessons to impress him. If this woman wants a handyman and you can’t even use a screwdriver without serious injury, drop it and step back. You have a lot to offer as yourself, with your own interests and hobbies. If another person doesn’t appreciate those things, hold out for someone who will. But please don’t set yourselves both up for failure when the truth starts to shine through. Do only what you want to do. No time limit exists for who you are.

There’s someone out there who is waiting for the real thing. Drop the acting gig. After all, your open schedule means you have the time for the real deal.

 

— Marisa Bagnato 

(Originally written on Thought Catalog)

Advertisements

BEING SO OFFENDED YOU KILL YOURSELF

ImageWhat if she is no more a virgin?
What if she is a whore?
What if she bleaches her skin to whatever color she wants?
What if she got pregnant without having a wedding?
What if he loves tattoos and got one?
What if he loves wearing ear rings and dreads?
What if he or she prefers to bump pelvises with others of the same sex?

   — they will burn in some raging inferno near Siberia right? Yeah, just like you—

Everyone seems to have a pretty good idea of what is an acceptable behavior for other people in this our society. We are quick to condemn what other people are doing “wrong” because we either aren’t doing them or are so able to conceal them from others in order to look impeccable and peacefully carry on with our business of judging others in a boss way. And we fail to realize that judging how others choose to live their lives in turn reduces the quality of our own lives.

So your neighbor is gay? What wrong does that do to you? Does the fact that he or she humps a person of the same sex prevent you from humping a person of the opposite sex? Does it remove money from your pockets? Or that puts your life in some kinda risk uh?

— and don’t forget that gay also means happy… Yeah, you should now check your dictionary—

Sometimes I ask my self what possible reward will I get by hating and condemning other fellows for the way they choose to behave, especially where such behavior does not cause harm to me or to other members of the society.
Really should I condemn this my neighbor because they kill and eat dogs almost every weekend just because I see dogs as pets and not food?

  — and they love cows as pets, but I eat them everyday so effing what?—

I know Cynthia, she loves children but hates the idea of “marriage”, does that now mean having children is not allowed for her? She may not cohabit with a willing partner too? I also know she loves sex a lot and almost always horny, why will it offend me that she is not a virgin. Why will it offend me that the best way for her to explore her sexuality is through masturbation? Should I have a say in how my friend decide to use her body?

No doubt you have read some books that encourages you to worry about her lifestyle haven’t you? or you, who are too lazy to read have been told to somehow ignore the trend in these books, that at some point these books sanctioned certain behaviors that you now abhor or you never read that sometime ago men were somehow justified for rape? Or that non-virgin brides were stoned to death for breaking their hymen before their wedding? Or that slavery was normal? What about misogyny?

All am saying is that If you lived in those times, those practices would have been normal to you as well and if you happened to still be alive in these generation, you would also come to accept that those things needed change and have indeed changed.
Its all cultural and culture evolves, same thing happens to our laws, they evolve.
The world will never ever wait for you so why sweat yourself over what your neighbor is doing now.

    –He/she is not wrong, you are not right either –

Indeed these rules have changed with time, still so and another form of justification was and is still being given for the changes. That is why you now feel no guilt touching your wife or girlfriend when she is in her “unclean” period.
Don’t you even notice the changes now from when you were born? Fast-forward  150 years from now and imagine how much would have changed. Who knows weddings might be extinct, at least that’s what I can imagine.

You are free to live by the prescriptions of whatever rule of faith you abide by but you have no right moral or whatsoever to condemn or stigmatize those who do not conform to your fallible beliefs.
It is only people who are able to distinguish their real desires and fashion their way of life differently from the ones manufactured for them are able to lead fulfilling lives.
Your life’s journey is different from theirs, so concentrate on yours before nature forces you to stop at 2 bus stops before your final destination.

This is James and if you could read my “lips” well (even though I know your emotional state right now won’t let u) you will understand that I have not endorsed or otherwise any form of behavior or habit. I’m only saying that you should either mind yourself or kill yourself.

Because…

      — Even if you are still a virgin or have holiness entrusted upon you, you maybe a judgmental prick and that means we are all heading to the same inferno at Siberia eventually–

For me I’d rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by beliefs, prejudices and ignorance.

HOW THE FACEBOOK VIRUS AFFECTS YOUR LIFE

ImageI read from somewhere the other day that Facebook is the most depressing social networking website and I couldn’t help but agree and why is that?

Because Facebook peeps post beautiful pictures (with hidden broken smiles) of their life events and make updates on the wonders that their God is doing for them which drives you to begin to make depressing comparisons between the quality of your life with their lives.

How many times do you get to see your close (now prolly former) friend’s status updates read  “engaged”, or the usual heartbreaking wedding invites and worse still “married” while you are still finding it difficult to get your “boyfriend” to agree that you both are in a relationship? Yeah, that cheating bastard!

Quite depressing isn’t it?

You read that your former best friend is working in a top law firm in Lagos and earning a 6 figure sum per annum while the other is with Chevron living his dream while you are still coasting with life. And the bitter truth is that without Facebook, you might not get to know these things that somehow mess with your happiness.

For example:

Latest updates from your course mate Akpos (I still hate Akpos in real life tho) the other day says “make una thank God for me for blessing me with a brand new car. Hard work really pays.”Hard work really pays? No wonder Adamu’s barrow pushing business is paying him a lot.

Like WTF, I just left the university with this dude last year

and my bank account is still a major liability to the bank.

And you were happy for him albeit with mixed feelings because it led you to start over thinking and cussing your God for creating you to be lazier than Akpos when you in fact are actually doing the best you can.

Then Johnny came with his own update, a lovely picture of him French kissing his fiancee “promising” his friends on Facebook that he must get married to her come June next year because she is the sweetest chic alive. Or is it Caro who is displaying pictures of her 2nd child while your ovaries are angrily bloating you with cramps every month? Hmmmm!

Then you sulk and remember that you are still a virgin and probably will be till (you die?) because you are too busy trekking all over the streets of Lagos looking for that goddam elusive job.

Don’t worry, you won’t die a virgin, life is already screwing you.

I am certain some of us can relate to these. And I want you to know that you don’t feel so because you are inherently a bad person who is not happy for his fellow, it’s because we are human and it is hard to not feel that way when things are not going great for us. Nevertheless, be happy for them still and always wish them better.

You might be going through a devastating early life crisis now while they are apparently directed people. You are feeling lost now yeah? But they might go through what you are going through later in life and by then it will be much more complicated, because they will have much more responsibilities then and because no one can predict who is gonna suffer mid-life crisis later.

Facebook can really be depressing and my biggest letdown is the realization that almost everyone is faking it on here and that no one actually has their shit together at any giving point in time despite the glossy pictures and exaggerated updates you see.

Trust me; run into them someday, you will be shocked to know their true story

So don’t waste your time on jealousy; sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind… life is a journey and it’s a long one and in the end, it is only with yourself.

This is James, I am a Lawyer and that’s all about it. If my Facebook updates contribute to your depression, remember that it is all a ruse because I am also having an early life crisis.

Thank you.

PS: the names in this article have been changed to avoid kidnapping and subsequent torture of the subjects for posting wonderfully annoying photos and updates

WHY YOU SHOULDN’T HAVE KIDS!

Lovely
Lovely

I wonder why people rush having kids as soon as they get married, like they are trying to win some race against their biological clock?

—Oh No! Please don’t tell me your new wife was 39 at your wedding…  No right? —

I mean some people churn out 3-4 babies in a space of five years (like one man in my village who has 13 now) and I wonder why you gotta take all that risk.

Now what do I think?

I THINK the arrival of the first child changes a lot of things in marriage and if you are newly-wed, you might just need one or two years (yeah, because you need space to stroll naked round your homes sometimes) to adjust to your new home before you can withdraw the use of contraceptives or remove your abortion (sharap!!!) “Belt” and release the baby[s].

— Or you have been living together before now, haven’t you? —

YOU should never ever release a “helpless” child from your “portal” into this cruel world except you have the means to give it the best of what is comfortable to survive. Not just the basic needs, but a little luxury and whatever foundation that is necessary to survive in this evilly competitive world. That also extends to the fact that you should never have more children than your means to take care of them.

Thus, if your having a second child will mean that you have to withdraw your first child from some really nice school in Lekki, to a shitty one at Ajegunle or reduce his/her quality of upbringing to accommodate the 2nd and 3rd and…13th, then you really need to chill before fertilizing that egg.It’s pretty expensive to raise a child!

— Oh your wife is now 42? Oh, sheht! You need to rewind that clock —

NOW READ MY LIPS AGAIN,“I’d rather not have any kids than lose my wife to childbirth.”Statistics in this part of the world has maternal mortality rate at a high. Women die due to complications arising from pregnancy and it’s worse when you rush the whole process as if her biological clock is about to embrace the finish line before you cum…(lol). Really, it’s better to be childless or to be fair have a single child than lose your precious wife while trying to get the second one. In other words, medically weigh you uterus on a scale and know how much weight it can carry.

HAVING MORE children than you can adequately account for increases the risk of having what the Igbos call “nwa mmefu” or “omo ale jatijati” in Yoruba and for the Hausa version, I can’t spell that mehhhn!!!

Such a child could kill you before your time, so you need to think now before you blame some silly child for wasting your old age, while in fact you failed to make the right decisions earlier and that guilt of having failed as a parent will always be there no matter how good you were in it.

— And I also agree that there are some children (unlike you) that were sent to destroy their parents no matter what—

HAVING CHILDRENtakes much more than a happy sperm tracking down a joyously shy ovum. It involves a lot of patience and dedication. It requires pure love for a helpless little thing. Whenever I look at a baby, I see perfection, something good always wail up inside of me; a strong desire to have one that I am gonna be everything to.

— I know I am a good father (hey Thomas, you can now refer to my Facebook profile picture to clear your doubt) —

Not everyone has the capacity to be a good parent and everybody needs to look inward and determine that with sincerity.May be by then some of us will embrace the fact that it is another of society’s BS that we must marry to procreate. But the truth is that not everyone is meant to and that will not make you weird or a bad person, rather the universe will be happy with you for having the courage to do the right thing.

 THERE ARE more of what I think about this… but I am being distracted by the thought if this little sweet girl that slept safely, wrapped around me last week. Really, it’s difficult to shake such joy.

What You Should Do About Your Early Life Crisis

ImageHere’s a secret: there are four types of people in the world:

1. People who, from an early age, know exactly what they want to do and are still doing it in their 50s and 60s. My friend Meggin is like that. In elementary school, she was already writing. By high school, she had written several novels. Now she’s the best-selling author of “The Princess Diaries.” It’s incredible because it’s so rare. A tiny percentile of people are like her. You’re not like her; I’m not either. Get over it.

2. People who, from an early age, think they know what they want to do. They often have big surprises in their 40s, realizing they don’t actually enjoy what they’ve committed to. Many of the apparently-directed people you see are in this group. You’re feeling lost now. They’ll go through what you’re going through later, but it will be much more complicated, because they’ll have husbands, wives, kids, and mortgages. So as nuts as it seems, you’re lucky.

3. People who don’t care about big goals. They know how to follow rules (e.g. do the homework, study for the test, do what the boss demands) and the enjoy dotting I’s and crossing T’s. They coast.

4. People like you who are lost.

Most young people are in that final category. Some hide it better than others. Some even hide it from themselves. Do your peers all seem more confident and directed than you? They’re not. Most of them are faking it or just aren’t as introspective as you are. Talk to them in 20 years and they’ll tell you how frightened and confused they were back when they were in college. So the first thing to realize is that feeling lost is part of being a 20-something.

To be honest, it’s part of being a 40-something, but those of us who don’t have midlife crises tend to embrace it. I enjoy being lost, because it allows me to be surprised. I prefer to have life hit me than to hit life. Anything could happen!

When I first started directing plays, I was terrified because I didn’t know what I was doing. My goal was to come up with a plan so that I could have some confidence. It took me 20 years to figure out that the fun was having no idea what I was doing. The fun part of directing is making it up as I go along. So I’m just as lost now as I was back then. But when you’re lost, you can either view it as a scared child, alone in the woods, or as a brave explorer, open to experience.

We can subdivide lost people into two groups:

1. People who are truly lost. They really do have no passions. Their emotions are blunted. This group may be clinically depressed. If you’re a member, I urge you to seek professional help. There are treatments for depression. There are ones involving meds and ones involving talk therapy (e.g. cognitive-behavioral therapy) that can be quite effective. If you’re clinically depressed, Quora can’t help you but a doctor probably can.

Also note that lots of people use “my career” and “my major” as proxies for their real concerns. When I was in college, most of my complaints about lofty things (“what am I going to do with my life?” “what’s it all about?” “how can I find meaning?”) really came down to panic that I didn’t have a girlfriend.

2. People who have bought into cultural norms of what they’re “supposed” to do. For example, George loves video games. They really, really excite him, but he’s been told “you can’t make a career out of that” or “that’s not for grownups,” so when he wonders what he’s passionate about, he doesn’t count gaming and decides he doesn’t have any passions. Be he does have a passion. A passion is a passion, whether it’s a sanctioned one or not.

Or Mary, who has bought into the idea that she has to choose a major in college, and that whatever you choose should be your passion, and that this choice is all tied up with a lifelong career. What Mary most loves is singing. But she doesn’t have a great voice, and she’s been told she’ll never make it as a professional singer. So she doesn’t even consider majoring in music. As far as she’s concerned — based on what she’s been told — she has no passion.

Or Dan, who dreams about being a dad. No career interests him, but he really, really wants to have children. Or Amy, who longs for a boyfriend. She’s very passionate when she imagines being in a relationship, but she feels guilty because modern women are “supposed” to be independent.

If you’re in this group then you’re not really lost. You just don’t fit well in generally-accepted categories. Well, then that’s your lot in life. If you love doodling, you can’t make yourself stop loving it and start loving banking instead. What you can do is work to arrange your life so that you can have as much doodle time as possible. You can stop confusing what-you’ll-get-paid-for with what-you’re-into.

Some people are lucky enough to get paid for their passions. Many aren’t. It’s a fact of life, and it’s one you can cope with. I’m 30 years into an adulthood in which I can’t make money doing what I most love. I don’t even think about it any more. I have a great life. I have a day job that’s interesting and a night-and-weekend life that’s thrilling.

Adrian Thomas suggests some ducks you should line up. He’s right. Do that. Then quit worrying about what you’re supposed to do. Your major? It’s not important no matter how many people tell you it is. Your passion? You have one or you don’t. Maybe you don’t have one now but you’ll have one later. It doesn’t matter. Just work to give yourself opportunities.

One last piece of advice: how much have you traveled? How often have you ventured out of your comfort zone? Consider taking a year off and backpacking around the world. Do it with little or no money, paying for your room and board by working in restaurant kitchens or whatever. Let Planet Earth and its peoples and sights shock you into becoming a passionate person. Many young people can’t be passionate because they haven’t been exposed to enough sensations and experiences to be awakened into the possibilities of the world.

Marcus Geduld

Motherhood

A great article for the intending moms… I couldn’t help but share it.Image

———————————————————————————————————————-

We are sitting at lunch when my daughter casually mentions that she and her husband are thinking of “starting a family.” “We’re taking a survey,” she says, half-joking. “Do you think I should have a baby?”

“It will change your life,” I say, carefully keeping my tone neutral. “I know,” she says, “no more sleeping in on weekends, no more spontaneous vacations.” But that is not what I meant at all. I look at my daughter, trying to decide what to tell her.

I want her to know what she will never learn in childbirth classes. I want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing will heal, but that becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional wound so raw that she will forever be vulnerable.

I consider warning her that she will never again read a newspaper without asking “What if that had been MY child?” That every plane crash, every house fire will haunt her. That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die.

I look at her carefully manicured nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive level of a bear protecting her cub. That an urgent call of “Mom!” will cause her to drop a souffle or her best crystal without a moment’s hesitation. I feel I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed by Motherhood.

She might arrange for childcare, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting and she will think of her baby’s sweet smell. She will have to use every ounce of her discipline to keep from running home, just to make sure her baby is all right.

I want my daughter to know that everyday decisions will no longer be routine. That a five year old boy’s desire to go to the men’s room rather than the women’s at McDonald’s will become a major dilemma. That right there, in the midst of clattering trays and screaming children, issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester may be lurking in that restroom.

However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess herself constantly as a mother. Looking at my attractive daughter, I want to assure her that eventually she will shed the pounds of pregnancy, but she will never feel the same about herself. That her life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child. That she would give it up in a moment to save her offspring, but will also begin to hope for more years — not to accomplish her own dreams, but to watch her child accomplish theirs.

I want her to know that a cesarean scar or shiny stretch marks will become badges of honor. My daughter’s relationship with her husband will change, but not in the way she thinks. I wish she could understand how much more you can love a man who is careful to powder the baby or who never hesitates to play with his child. I think she should know that she will fall in love with him again for reasons she would now find very unromantic.

I wish my daughter could sense the bond she will feel with women throughout history who have tried to stop war, prejudice and drunk driving. I hope she will understand why I can think rationally about most issues, but become temporarily insane when I discuss the threat of nuclear war to my children’s future.

I want to describe to my daughter the exhilaration of seeing your child learn to ride a bike. I want to capture for her the belly laugh of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog or a cat for the first time. I want her to taste the joy that is so real, it actually hurts.

My daughter’s quizzical look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes. “You’ll never regret it,” I finally say. Then I reach across the table, squeeze my daughter’s hand and offer a silent prayer for her, and for me, and for all of the mere mortal women who stumble their way into this most wonderful of callings. This blessed gift from God . . . that of being a Mother.

— Marian De Vera

The Date

Recently, i came across an article about a date and it was so hilarious that i had to share it on here. It was written by Brett Grischo.

Enjoy a good laugh.

———————————————————————————Image————————————–

I don’t blog about dating. I know, it seems stupid that I’ll plaster pictures of my kids all over the World Wide Web and write about my balls but I won’t write about girlfriends or dating. I’m funny like that.

A few months ago I went on a first date over a late breakfast. Oh wait, I mean a friend went on a first date over breakfast. To make this flow better, I will pretend I am actually the friend, even though I’m not cuz I never write about dating. Anyway, breakfast – I don’t know why I agreed to this other than the fact I love bacon and everybody knows that bacon is worse than alcohol when it comes to making poor decisions in conjunction with consumption. Of course I made this decision without having had the bacon yet, but the simple thought of it made me instantly say yes.

I got to the diner first and busied myself with a few games of Words With Friends while I inhaled the sweet smell of bacon. The date showed up and we had to wait five minutes for our table.

I talk a lot. And I’d like to believe when I talk a lot that I actually say interesting things. During the five minute wait for our table, I didn’t speak a word, other than a few guttural acknowledgements and a periodic “okay” or “right” with accompanying head nods while the date rambled on and on and on about her ex and his drug problems. Yep, the first five minutes leapt right into his usage and possible manufacturing of various illegal substances. I suppose all that is interesting.

I eyeballed the front doors and thought about a fake limp I could add to a hectic escape while I held my kidney and frantically told the date how sorry I was that I had to leave and have an emergency appendectomy. But then a waitress walked by with a plate of bacon and the hostess said our table was ready.

We sat down and her conversation moved on to her many talents. Yes, it was her conversation. I spoke more to the waitress than to the date. Apparently the date was at one time awesome at everything. She used to model, she was a top cadet in the police academy, she saved the Bank of America account when she was an intern writing copy for an ad agency and she apparently was on the road to being a professional soccer player as she played with Mia Hamm all the time and was just as good or really probably much much better.

She quite effortlessly shifted her conversation to her vehicle and actually said, “I’m a very good driver.” Under normal circumstances, I would have Rain Manned her ass but A) she would have never gotten it and 2) she didn’t deserve my cleverness and III) I couldn’t get a word in anyway.

I hoped the deer in the headlights look I was giving her wasn’t misconstrued as gazing deeply into her eyes. I was so stunned, I couldn’t decide how to intercede so I mostly didn’t, other than those head nods, raised eyebrows and questionable sounds of bewilderment. She finally asked me a question. I think it was about my playing basketball. I think I said, “Yes, I play,” and then was interrupted by her saying, “I play basketball. I’m really good actually. I play at the park, shooting around with my daughter. People would even stop to comment and tell me how good I am.”

After she gushed on and on about herself she actually asked me a second question. I think it was about what else I like to do. I told her I like to write. This is how it went down:

“I like to write.”

She interrupted and said, “I write. I have written books and articles and have had lots of things published. I’m a great writer.” Then she talked for a few minutes about her copywriting for an ad agency again and somehow the modeling, top cadet, and soccer came up again. And then she told me how crafty she is. She makes things all the time and her friends buy them from her for lots of money.

My plate was empty and all the bacon was gone. I ate fast. Really fast. It helped that I wasn’t able to talk, nor did I want to. She managed to shovel a lot of food into her pie hole while she told me how she was the smartest person in her school, she is a really good bowler and she loves to rock climb and that she is awesome at it. She’s apparently a really good eater too and I can’t fathom how many years ago she modeled much less that she broke a sweat doing anything other than walking up stairs.

I asked for the check and the date asked what I do. I said I run a small business and she said, “I ran a small business. It was really successful. I’m a great business owner.”

I wanted to tell her I’m a robot to see how she’d respond. I’m sure it would have been something like, “I’m a robot. I’m the best robot in the world. I have bionic arms and legs. People stop me all the time and tell me what a great robot I am.”

I limped to the cashier holding my kidney. The date said something about being an awesome limper and how she was in the Olympic Limping Trials while I quickly paid the bill in cash. We went outside and I said, “Well, that bacon was good. I’ve got to get going now.” I think she said she makes the best bacon in the world as I limp-ran to my car while doubled over.

I got in and saw her waving to me. She said something I couldn’t quite hear, but I’m sure it was “I’m better than bacon.”

Brett Grischo