Monogamy, Blessing or Curse?

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If you have been writing my blog up until this point, you would know about my 2017 goal to get in touch with my spirituality, and how I feel about men who are squeamish about the Fifty Shades of Grey series, and if you are just arriving to Find Some TLC, welcome!

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, there’s something I need to discuss with you all, the m-word, the plague upon our dating houses, the thing that we’ve all been sold, but constantly try and return. I’m talking about monogamy, and its role in all of our millennial dating shenanigans.

I posed the question “Is monogamy natural?,” on my Facebook page the other day, and received a mixed bag of reactions ranging from “Gurl, please,” to “No, it’s not, but I still prescribe to it.”

My thought on the whole debate is this, at my core, I think that monogamy isn’t the problem, I think that the overt traditionalism that has polluted monogamy is the reason why so many twentysomethings are out here running away from it faster than Trump’s hairline is betraying him.

I mean, the idea of being with one person at a time, should be simple right. In many ways, I think committing to one person was a way to combat decision fatigue. How great would it be, in theory, to find the future peanut butter to your jelly and have a relationship that is mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally complementary to your whole being?

While that sound’s like the bee’s knees, arms and legs, I think we have Tinder, OkCupid and alla their mans an’ them for making us both more aware of polyamorous lifestyles and also giving us the false illusion of choice, while we all try before we buy.

Monogamy as it is constantly presented to us, is usually hetero-normative, and involves the settling down of curiosity and the libido, in the name of a ring and a marriage certificate. But because the antiquated ideals of monogamy are now up against the fear that your boyfriend of girlfriend could be TIndering behind your back, or wondering if the OkCupid mister you clicked with is double booking dates, too many of us are running around fearful and insecure.

If you have spent the better part of at least two decades working through awkward adolescence, getting an education, and working on self love, why can one supposedly good digital mister have you double texting and worrying about a nonexistent Becky wit da good hair?

Never has it been easier for you to be the best thing since sliced bread for a guy one night, and ghosted the next day? Or is it that in our predispositions for monogamy, we weren’t taught enough about dating around and doing some self-reflection. I find that while my personality has gotten stronger over the years, it’s all too easy for me to revert back to tolerating things that ought not be tolerated in the name of easing loneliness when it shows up uninvited.

I remember my first and only real relationship during my freshmen year of college, when having someone slide in your FB inbox was still a novelty, and when I was convinced abstinence was my jam. That relationship lasted for all of six months, but I found that I felt smothered during the whole thing, and couldn’t even be bothered to properly break up with the person.

In short, I was every guy who has every walked off with a piece of my former hope that love still conquers all, fast forward to now and after taking a one year break from dating, I don’t think I’m any better at dating than I was then.

Cue Drake’s “Trust Issues.” It’s more like I approach every new potential romance as a cause to be suspicious until proven otherwise. I show up with my metaphorical suit of armor so that lies and tomfoolery can’t penetrate me. But once I believe that there is a little light in someone, I shed my pretenses faster than we shed coats on a random warm winter day. Almost as if I’ve convinced myself that everyone is dark, so I have to soak up any ol’ light I find, until it get dark again.

I’m da real MVP of self-sabotage, but is the fact that ultimately I want to be with one person, perpetuating this?

I’m not good at playing games, and being cool while dating. In fact I like to be as uncool as possible, I like to discuss sex on the first date, I like to double text because I know the person saw my first message, and if I get a particular vibe, I’m the first to be like yes we just saw each other yesterday, but I want to see you today.

Take things slow for who?

But I don’t think it’s because I’m a hopeless romantic, I think it’s because I fear that all of the me on a silver platter is never going to be as satisfying, when all- you- can eat is a click away.

I know what you’re thinking, and yes, I could very easily swipe left and right and get plenty of people to occupy my time, but there’s also too great a risk of wasting my time, and you know risking my health. Yet, the physical has always been easier for me, like a temporary Band-aid while I try to ignore the fact that I have a gaping wound.

What I don’t understand is why in our avoidance of monogamy, we have all resolved to not only waste other people’s time but to waste your own?

I don’t think monogamy or polyamory for that matter is the reason why millennials are floundering at love, I think fearfulness is, being too afraid to say you want a relationship so comfortable that your partner greases your scalp, or being too chicken to say you never want a relationship and that having multiple love partners is really more you speed.

But we’re not afraid to waste our own time, and I don’t know about y’all but I am constantly reminded that life is short, so I don’t plan to waste my time any longer.

I still don’t know if I’m going to be a blushing bride some day, but I do know that in the meantime between time I can’t hide because I think every guy is gonna wastemytime.com, but I also can’t pass time with interactions that do not stimulate me simply because I think it’s better than the alternative.

Polyamory is not that hard to understand, and monogamy is not the devil, I think that we chose to place importance on the wrong things and now everyone’s got an automatic romantic fight 0r flight response.

How do you feel about monogamy? Could you ever see yourself in a polyamorous relationship? Do you think millennials suck at dating?

Let me know in the comments, and may you findsomeTLC…and love if that’s your thing!

 

 

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Yes, Fifty Shades Sucks, And?

pexels-photo-248148Here’s a not so secret, secret. My name is Tiffany Lashai Curtis and I am a fan of the “Fifty Shades of Grey,” series, which has become synonymous with poorly written embarrassing prose, and cheesy sexual platitudes, born out of Twilight fan fiction.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s address Rachel Simon, an entertainment writer over at Bustle, who in a review of Fifty Shades Darker, wrote that, “Sure, Fifty Shades is a series technically about a woman’s deepest fantasies, but Christian Grey’s controlling behaviors and Ana Steele’s weak-willed personality don’t make most feminists jump for joy.”

Did Simon miss the part where Christian Grey, has spent the last six years or so being a dominant? And also had she read the books, she would see that yes Christian is indeed controlling that’s clear on a surface level, however, Ana actually ends up being the one who overtakes him in many ways.

In just two days after the release of the movie, the interwebs has been hit with piece after piece lamenting about how terrible the movie was, how abusive it’s portrayal of BDSM is, and how unsexy the movie is to which I say, moviegoers, y’all are asking for too much.

If you want to see a feminist romance, where Ana is independent and don’t need no man, this isn’t for you. Heck, if you are looking to the film as a how-to guide for kinks and things this is also not for you.

The movie is full of stilted dialogue and questionable chemistry, with a certain cache for leaving out important details from the book.

But the movie and books for that matter, were never heralded as feminist literature.

The same way that the Magic Mike movies weren’t suddenly feminist because they offered equal opportunity sexual objectification.

Here’s what I take away from the series, it is in alignment with almost every other romance movie churned out by Hollywood, and what I think makes people uncomfortable at its core is that there are indeed several red flags that should have Ana running for the hills.

Remind me again how many of us choose to see a relationship through despite our better judgement? I think people take issues with many of the plot holes because they too closely mirror many of our own flaws, of trying to control everything in our lives or not taking the lead in our desires.

Aside from that it’s a movie to escape from bad Tindering and politics, and enjoy as what it is, with the understanding that this is not based on a true story, nor does it accurately represent alternative sexual lifestyles. But if the film sparks your curiosity and encourages you to look into Ben Wa Balls, or starts the conversation about better bedroom shenanigans with your lover of choice, or begins to shift your views on sex positivity then I think the books and the films did what they were supposed to do.

I’ve noticed that a lot of guys proclaim to have never seen the movie, but I did not there were many more couples in the theater than I saw two years ago.

I know that it’s en vogue for men to write off a romance movie as a chick flick, but hear me out if you are in fact in a heterosexual relationship and you find that your girlfriend, wife, or lady friend is intrigued enough or bored enough to read the books/watch the films, then ask her about it, research on your own. We tend to be curious about things that are outside of our own lives because those things might not be a part of our everyday routines.

So just in your woman mentions anything leather or kink related, you’re not running the other way or side eyeing her because you have not taken the time to educate yourself.

Fifty Shades Darker, is not The Notebook or The Titantic, but as a surface-level erotic film, that has the potential to open up the dialogue about women and sex positivity, I think it does what it was meant to do.

What are your thoughts on the series? Has it sparked conversations in your own life?

Let me know in the comments, and may you #findsometlc while you’re at it.

Why I’m Trying To Look Myself In The Third Eye and Questioning God, At The Same Time

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Dear God, it’s me Margaret…

Jk, it’s Tiffany. But seriously, I wonder who else among us, i.e. the clueless millennials who often need adultier adults to help us adult, are pushing their mid-twenties and seeking out something greater than materials and the constant streaming of Orange Voldemort’s tomfoolery?

I’m talking about the s-word. Spirituality.

Let me note here that spirituality and religion are in fact not one in the same. You do not have to be homies with baby Jesus in order to practice meditation, yoga, or generally try to center yourself on a daily basis.

During one of my usual Google searches for random facts of life, I found a post that essentially said that whatever level of religion or spirituality that you maintain now, is in fact the most that it will ever be.

Which made me go,whet?

I’d like to think that at this point in my life. my belief in something outside of the scope of existence can still go either way, but then I started to think that maybe that article had some truth to it.

One of my goals for this year, in addition to minding ALLA of my business and clearing up my skin, has been to look myself in the third eye, and if you have never tried to harness your chi, the third eye is “a mystical and esoteric concept referring to a speculative invisible eye which provides perception beyond ordinary sight,” according to ye ole Wikipedia.

I feel like at I’m at a place in life where spirituality has never been more necessary, or more elusive. I’ve read many an article about the wonders of meditation for easing anxiety and improving focus, and have read a testimony or two from those who swear by crystals.

And I wonder which aspects of spirituality are right for me? Crystals while I think they are gorgeous, is not practice is for me. I find that a lot of new age trends tend to clash so much with the fire and brimstone versions of Black Christianity that I have grown up on.

If you asked me what deity I believe in, I would tell you that I have two prayers in my soul, one being “Thank you God,” and “Fix it Jesus.” I acknowledge some version of God, as well as Christ who I like to think was the pinnacle of decent human beings.

But otherwise I am not a frequent church goer and I will not quote the Bible, nor do I believe that everything happens for a reason.

I do admire the premise of religion, because to exist with no kind of hope for something greater seems pretty grim to me.

But as a Black woman, who was told that I was a heathen as a child for reading Harry Potter, told that my hair was my crown after I shaved my head for the second time, and have had many a stranger lay their hands upon my greased up forehead, the idea that there is a nosy being in the sky smiting everybody for everything , left a bad taste in my mouth.

So how do I exist on the spectrum? I want to develop practices that fit my life, I want to meditate more, because even if you can’t get into it, silence is so precious these days.

I want to put healthy things in my body, and stretch my limbs, and be mindful of not being a cruddy person on a daily basis, and maybe that’s my brand of spirituality.

During a time when religions that we do not practice, or do not understand are being depicted in an awful light, I think it’s so important to figure out what you believe, and make sure that your beliefs are a guideline for your life without encroaching on any one else’s.

Religion and spirituality do not exist in a monolith the same way that people do not.

I used to think that they did, because so much of suffering was attributed to the one-dimensional religion I was being taught, but I found that once  I started questioning some of those ideals, my soul became a little more at peace, so if this is the height of my spirituality, then I think I’m okay with that.

 

 

 

How To Stay #Woke, When You Are Tired

“I feel tried.”-Evelyn, From The Internets

How apropos that on this here Tuesday, January 31st in the year of our Lord, or Vishnu, or Allah 2017, or whatever spiritual mans and ’em that keeps your soul centered. that I would stumble upon my favorite and one of the most underrated Youtuber’s new video.

Evelyn, From The Internets asked a question that has been on my mind more than my tax refund…Do I Have To Be An Internet Social Justice Warrior?

Unless you are one of those rare Pokemon who are blessed enough to lack alla da social media accounts, then I know you have seen what Orange Voldemort is up to, and if you have not, go read your Facebook feed immediately, and be appalled like the majority of ‘Murica.

Try as hard as I might, I can’t seem to tune it all out. I’ve deleted the apps, deactivated, and decompressed but my blood pressure is still up and my tolerance for bigoted bogusness masquerading as political hoodoo is getting lower.

I is tired, and you probably are too. I consider myself a writer and somewhat a member of the interwebz, so from time to time I offer commentary on the happenings in life and society. But these days, or rather in the past week, it has felt like I have a personal responsibility to combat every intolerant troll, misguided supporter, and privileged Suzie that I see practicing anything less than intersectionality.

I don’t want to be a internet social justice warrior, verbally sparring with every keyboard troll.

There’s another thing we’re forgetting, while the country that my textbooks always told me was the land of the free, crumbles around us, I am still expected to live my life, and it’s becoming harder and harder to do so.

I went on an interview yesterday, at a place that shall remain unnamed, and I forgot to wear my customer service face, because after sitting for an hour and a half while I watched two other white interviewees throw their hat in the corporate ring, I realized that I didn’t want to be there.

I didn’t want to be there in my respectable pencil skirt, and bare face. I wanted to wear color and print, and black lipstick. I wanted to be myself.

But being a black girl, with an opinion was not listed in the job description.

So instead I sat patiently, waiting to go into an office and be interviewed by two white higherups who when I raised an eyebrow at a question reminded me that, “this is how interviews go.”

My degree didn’t matter, and neither did my work history.

It was all about how I can pull my face into a Cheshire grin, and convince my interviewers that it was indeed my dream to be there.

But I kept thinking about the dynamics of the situation and beating back my social justice worries with a stick. I could not bring myself to care about this corporate interrogation, despite my blossoming joblessness.

I want to write, I want to protest, I want to tell people that they need to do better, I want to do better. But it seems that’s not what employers want to hear mixed in with my salary requirements.

In the midst of all of this we have to remember the importance of self-care, and no not the bubble bath taking, facial getting, Whole Foods version of it, but the kind that demands that we survive. That we get out of bed in the morning, that we do the job, that we keep food in our bellies, that we do all we can until we can do better, because now it seems that more than ever the political and shady powers that be, want us to be quiet, to smile and keep our heads down.

And it can wear thin on both your edges and your spirit, to be this tired, to be this disenchanted.

But we can start by shifting our own perspectives, by distancing but not disengaging. By loving yourself more, loving your friends, saying no to what does not bring your soul peace, by not scolding those who can and should know better.

Don’t keep your head down, don’t smile if you don’t feel like it, and don’t forget that taking care of yourself and taking up the cause must often happen in tandem.

Staying alive and healthy matters as much as staying woke.

-Tiff