I’m not going to lie. This has become a little uncomfortable for me. Knowing that people are looking to me as inspiration when it comes to their dating life. I was recently on a trip with a work friend, and she said: “I need to find me a …” (insert my fiancé’s name). I was flattered. But I responded with “Girl find the one for you.”
When I sat back and thought about what she said, it hit me, “have I become the #RelationshipGoals friend?”. And then I immediately thought, “I don’t want that, no way. Don’t want that pressure.”
I felt the hypocrisy begin to rise. I’ve said this exact phrase to several of my friends before. Girl I need to find me a husband like yours. Sis, does he have a brother, I need a man with his genes. And of course, I have said “I need to find me a … (insert a friends boyfriend/fiancé’/husband name).
Did they feel the same amount of pressure? I feel guilty now because I had no idea what it felt like to be on the other side of a compliment like that.
A couple of days passed, and that same thought crept into my mind. Instead of brushing it off, I sat and thought about it. Why am I uncomfortable with being an inspiration for others? The pressure, again, was my immediate answer.
But pressure about what? What type of pressure do I have when my friend says they admire my relationship. Is it the pressure the relationship failing? Nope. Is it because I feel like I have an image to keep up with? Nope. What about my other half. Am I worried what he will think when someone says that to him? Definitely not.
Ahhh. The answer finally comes to me. I shouldn’t be other peoples #relationshipgoals; they should find their own goals. But then I stopped myself and thought, well what is wrong with that?
Ashamed to say this, but I think I saw this saying on social media a while back. When the hashtag phenomenon started tapping into relationships, I remember seeing insta-quotes about “Not letting other people be your relationship goal, be your own.” I’m sure that was not the exact verbiage, but you get the picture.
I kept thinking hard about this, and then thought about why I should be comfortable with the admiration of my relationship. And within moments, I had a clear answer. A completely different response from when I was trying to think about all of the reasons I shouldn’t be an inspiration to others.
‘It’s hard out here‘ was my answer. And this is not the first time I said this. I’ve said it several times to my partner. He has heard it so much to the point where he says it right before I would typically say it.
This is what I mean.
Two years ago, I was single. My dating method of choice was app or online based. It was the easiest and most convenient way to meet people. And regardless of what you might think, just about every type of person is on Tinder.
The #1 question I always got was, “why are you single.” I’m sure I am not the only one. But my answer was always “because it’s hard out here”.
It’s hard out here for women in general when it comes to dating, but as a Black woman, I felt like it was so much harder for ME.
So many people try to tell you what you should look for when it comes to a mate. What type of car he should drive. His career choice. Does he own a house? Does he have kids?
Then when they do the one thing that is on your “NOPE” list, and you cut him loose. People will tell you not to settle, and it is only one thing. I’m sure you can get over it with time. Excuse me, no, I won’t get over it.
Why should I have to settle when I know what I want? So I waited. I cried. I celebrated. I was in pain. I found joy. And I got exactly what I needed, wanted and deserved.
So yes, I would want that to be an inspiration to someone else. Because that is real love, when you love yourself so much that you know, you deserve to wait for the person who is made just for you.
That is powerful. That is radiant. That is #RelationshipGoals.