I’ve had this conversation more than a few times in my life, and I don’t think it’ll ever make sense to those in denial. I’ve been asked in the past why I’m so headstrong, why I’d prefer to pack up my trash as I head out the door instead of asking my man to bring it out, or why I carve out time on Saturday mornings every 3-4 months to get my own oil changed and the answer is simple… “Don’t nobody got me like I got myself”. I’ve never dated a readymade man, nor have I ever expected to, we are all works in progress some have just progressed further than others.

Story Time

I once dated a man who would point out the things that I’d do on my own, things I should look to him to do for me— such as take out the trash, call him out for the groceries instead of carrying them in myself, get my car washed and repaired if need be…you know “things men do”. I would notice friends and family and all the poppin’ ass Instagram relationships and they all had these men, men who took care of them and finally I did too. Now that the conversation was had in my mind I didn’t expect to lift another finger when it came to certain things because I had my man and he was going to take care of it for me. A thing you should know about me is I give people the benefit of the doubt, I may write them off mentally at the first sign of some bull**** but I won’t call them out on it until I notice a reoccurring pattern. I woke up one day and noticed the trash hadn’t been taken out, I smelled it which meant he smelt it too but rather than complaining or even asking I took it upon myself to get ready and bring it out— he called me out for it. “All you have to do is ask”, was what I was told…meanwhile all I could wonder was ‘why should I have to ask’? We just got through having a conversation about how I need to let my man be a “man”, and now I should ask? I later realized it made him feel more manly to act as if he was there to do for me without having to actually do for me, it was an ego thing—as it usually is. That wasn’t the last time something went undone and I was faulted for not asking.

I can’t let you be a man if you don’t know how

At that point it became clear to me, not all men know how to be a “man” in a relationship, and that’s ok. I say that after having some time to understand the term “different strokes for different folks”. Meaning, what’s for her may not be for me –my expectations of a man may not be that of the next woman and once again that is completely ok. Personally, I have a hard time allowing a man to take the reins if I feel he has no direction, whereas another woman may let a man lead her to nowhere simply because … he’s the man. It’s taken me time to learn many things especially as it pertains to submission and gender roles in relationships and while there are still many gray areas one thing is clear, submission will never be a problem when it is for the right reasons. If you take time to look up submission, it means “the action or fact of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will or authority of another person”. Explain to me why a woman would comply to a man who doesn’t mean her well; if anything, she would defy, correct? We find ourselves in relationships with men who may not have been given the tools or knowledge to really lead a relationship the right way and as a result the “strong black woman” mentality kicks in and we do what we do best— our own thing. A lose, lose battle because in the process we emasculate our men (and I use the term “men” loosely because had they really been men then there would be no problem with submission) – but that’s another topic for another time. The problem is not with us women refusing to submit but rather with the men for not knowing how to lead. Behind many of our hard, attitude filled, I’ll do it myself exteriors, are vulnerable, fragile, hurt women who have unfortunately endured pain, and have almost been conditioned to expect disappointment yet we are blamed for not wanting to submit… not wanting to set ourselves up for more disappointment. —the irony.

The bible states,

1 Timothy 2:11-15 11A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. 12I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. 13For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. 15But women will be saved through childbearing-if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.

Whew Chillay, if I ever wondered why I am not married… I guess that explains it.

I don’t listen and I talk back

Sorry Lord, a woman should not learn quietness and full submission in all relationships, I love you but I don’t agree… A suggestion I’ve posed before, how about we break the barriers and build the trust then let’s talk about submission, give us women a safe place to feel we can let go… after all isn’t that what being in a relationship is all about? Submission to me is so damn ego driven it’s not even funny, men want a woman who listens and doesn’t “talk back” meanwhile wont even take time out their day to listen to our complaints. My advice to men, lead us women to a safe place first, teach us to trust and see just how we submit.

Thanks for reading,

Mommi Ashley