One slow Saturday I was watching one of “those” shows. You know the shows intelligent people hate to admit they watch, but your bored and nothing else is on television? The culprit was Love & Hip-Hop,” and one woman was telling the other woman (I really don’t know their names) that she should hang in there with the rapper guy she was dating (I think Fabolous), because he would eventually “change.“ I immediately turned the television to the Food Network. Bored or not, I couldn’t take anymore.
Ironically, I’ve heard this same “wisdom” given to one of my sister-friends who was dating a basketball player. After a string of discovered infidelities, one of her so-called friends told her that she should basically suck it up because he was going to eventually stop playing basketball, stop being on the road, and settle down and be faithful. I could not disagree more.
As I told my sister-friend, it is illogical and unfair for someone to wait for a change in his or her partner’s repeated bad behavior. First of all, it sends the wrong message; one that makes bad behavior acceptable as long as they plan to change. Just think about what it says about the person waiting on this miraculous change; their somehow inferior or desperate enough to wait around. Lastly, “waiting” takes the burden off of the perpetrator and places it on the victim. You could easily find yourself waiting for years, and change never comes.
I encouraged my sister-friend not to put her life on hold and demand that she be treated the way she deserves to be, right now. Tomorrow is not promised. And, suffering today for an uncertain tomorrow is not good living at all. Instead, if your partner can’t live up to your expectations, it’s time for a new one.
You would never hear a guy telling another guy, “hang in there dawg she’ll grow out of it and get tired of cheating on you.” Never going to happen. It baffles me that women give this advice to each other about sticking it out, when the men in their lives consistently fall short of expectations.
Unfortunately, it goes straight to the imbalance between women and men in our society. I believe, women are socialized to think they are less than without a man. No matter how successful, happy, or fulfilled they are in their single lives, if they don’t have a man, they feel that something is wrong. This is false, ladies. If you believe it, it leads to women letting men get away with the unacceptable. Ladies, it’s up to you to even the scale, and demand that the man in your life met your standards, or else. The only person you can truly change is you. If you find yourself saying to yourself, I’ll hang in there, he’ll change, it’s time ot reevaluate his position in your life.
Wishing you love and ceaseless joy! Follow @NathanHWilliams on Twitter.