Tag Archives: esteem

Predators Are Not Sexy

There’s a screenshot of an alleged message from a man to a woman circulating around social media. In the message the man is demanding that the woman spend time with him. ICYMI :

Men, first of all, if you have to threaten, stalk, harass or intimidate a woman into going out with you, you’re a predator. If you are messaging women repeatedly trying to guilt, shame or demean them into going out with you, you’re a predator. If you think it’s perfectly acceptable to disrespect a woman and her boundaries because you want her attention focused on you, you’re a predator. If you think you have the right to have a woman’s time, attention, and body at your disposal simply because you have a penis, you’re a predator. If you are sleeping with a lot of women then emotionally hurting them, knowingly spreading STIs to them and trying to control them with sex, you’re a predator. If you become so angry that you would physically harm or kill a woman for rejecting your advances, you’re a homicidal sociopath….and a predator. If you are a man who cosigns this kind of behavior when conducted by other men, you’re a predator.

 

You’re a predator.

And until you raise your own self esteem and lower your male entitlement, you will always be a predator.

You’re the Harvey Weinsteins of the world. Lording your perceived power over women in the workplace, at the nightclubs, at the parks, churches, schools and on social media because you think your manhood makes you special. You forget that without women, you wouldn’t even exist. Your only existence is because of a woman giving birth to you. Yet you repay womankind by preying on us for your own pleasure. Deep down you know you’re insignificant, but instead of improving yourself, your self hatred spills over into how you speak to and treat women. Your self loathing isn’t repaired by the money in your bank account, the designer clothes you hide yourself in or the expensive car you drive.

In fact, a lot of predators have no significant financial means or career achievements to boast about. All they have is a penis. Because of that, these predators feel like women should die for their attention because that’s all they think women live for – getting a man.

A lot of predators that I’ve encountered think women are so desperate for attention from men that we should drop our lives, goals, kids, friends, family, plans & careers to be in their company. For what? What are you going to do with my time? Take me to a movie? Buy me a meal? Expect to have sex with me afterwards? Boy bye. Life is about so much more than some insecure, low self esteem having dude with too much time on his hands that wants to control women because he can’t control himself. Dates should be mutual and both parties should want to be together, otherwise it’s not special. It’s definitely not worth being threatened over.

What was most outrageous about the comments were ones from women saying they’d get dressed and leave the house with this man when he arrived. Very few women thought his language was a red flag of danger. In fact, they thought it was romantic because “he must’ve made important plans”. Plans? Really? To do what exactly? Why sit in a car, at a restaurant or movie theater with someone who clearly has anger issues while you feel uncomfortable? This is the kind of person that will kill you in an abandoned house, then go home to his wife like nothing happened. There’s nothing romantic about his message.

It’s disrespectful.

Then there are the men claiming a woman they don’t know (the recipient of the message) is a stuck up bitch because she’s playing games.

News Flash: being busy isn’t playing games.

Being busy is either actually being busy or trying nicely to tell you that there’s no interest in seeing you because just flat out saying that no longer works. I wonder how many of the men who commented in agreement with talking to women like this would also say it was OK for their daughter or sister to agree to going somewhere with this predator? Or does that change things for them? Why? I’m someone’s sister and daughter too; so is she…and so is she. If it was their daughter, sister or mother, receiving this type of message, those same men would want that other man dead or in jail because then it would be wrong. Predators with this mindset towards women lack overall respect for women until it happens to a woman they feel it shouldn’t happen to, like mom, sister and daughter, not realizing that mindset is exactly why it happened to mom, sister and daughter in the first place. That’s that “it’s OK for me to rape, stalk, harass, torment, disrespect your woman, but you can’t do it to mine” thought process that is a root cause to the problems of violence towards women.

Why can’t a woman’s boundaries be respected regardless of who she is? Some of us really have better things to do with our time than spend it with men we don’t want to be with. Why can’t men understand these complete sentences when spoken by a woman?

  • I’m busy.
  • No thank you.
  • No.
  • Don’t contact me anymore.

If a woman sent that kind of message to a man, she’d be called crazy and dangerous by both men and women.

Stalking isn’t the equivalent of romance. Threatening a woman is not the equivalent of making plans for a date. Predatory behavior is not acceptable. It never has been. It never will be. Pay attention to how many predators are losing their power. If you conduct yourself in this manner, eventually you will be next.

They Don’t Want Us To Be Woke

Let’s start with this, so that we’re clear from the onset.

I am a survivor of rape and domestic violence. I am also both woke and aware that sometimes women lie about being victimized by men. Therefore, what I’m about to state isn’t based on my biased emotions because of what I’ve survived. I don’t hate men and I know how to be objective.

If you are a person of color, and you don’t go to see Birth of a Nation, you’re playing yourself and robbing our children of an important moment in American History that is not sugar-coated or watered down.

A jury of his peers found Nate Parker not guilty of raping a woman, whom he had a relationship with, when he was a young, black man (without millions of dollars in the bank) on a sports scholarship in college. Now, as a grown man, Nate Parker is being vilified for that same crime because he successfully made a movie that could have a positive impact on our legacy and the minds of people in this country.

This is not a “I slipped something in her drink/I gave women drugs regularly” situation by any means. Nate Parker has spoken about this incident and never changed his stand on his innocence. Recently he was interviewed by Robin Roberts about the incident. After the interview, The Grio published an article about said interview with a very misleading title in an effort to (obviously) gain readers’ attention.  During the interview with Robin Roberts, Parker was expected to apologize for the rape controversy that recently reemerged and exploded due to the spotlight put onto Birth of a Nation. In my experience as a rape victim, a woman, and a citizen, innocent people, who are proven innocent by a jury, don’t often apologize for a crime they didn’t commit, if they didn’t commit the crime. It is my opinion that mainstream media is attempting to hang Parker with his past, in hopes that no one will go see the movie.

The reality is this: the biggest demographic of movie goers is women. With an estimated annual buying power of $5 trillion dollars, women rule in many areas of importance, regardless of what you may assume.  Therefore, if women are led to believe that Nate Parker committed the crime of rape, even though a jury found him innocent, women will sympathize with the alleged victim, if they too have been violated, or empathize, even if they haven’t, and thereby boycott Birth of a Nation instead of supporting it. Someone somewhere is hoping that on this opening box office weekend, that will be their victory.

Ask yourself this one question if you think I’m blowing smoke:

If Parker were in fact guilty of the crime of rape, why bring it to the forefront after he’s already starred in several movies, along with the likes of Denzel Washington?

I’ll tell you why. Birth of a Nation isn’t just going to be in movie theaters across the country or the world. There’s an educational curriculum developed around the film to put it into school districts as well. If our next generation isn’t led to believe that slaves were happy being enslaved and are instead taught the truth about what slavery was, introduced to more stories about how slavery impacted the country the live in, they are more likely to have a higher sense of self, civic responsibility and concern about civil rights as it relates to themselves and other people of color. 

The rape case that ended with a not guilty verdict is being used as a distraction. If Nate Parker was a White man, putting out this same movie, the crime he WASN’T found guilty of committing, wouldn’t be a topic of any conversation at all…. anywhere. I urge you to make a decision to educate yourself about a pivotal figure in African-American history instead of allowing yourself to be influenced by the spin being put on Nate Parker’s past. If you were in his shoes, that is what you’d want.

They don’t want us to be woke. So we need to stay woke.

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight
Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

Don’t Let the Likes Fool You

We live in an age where social media is prevalent. It’s not going away no more than the Internet it lives on is, and everyday it becomes larger than the previous day. Social media is truly embedded into our culture and how we communicate with each other. That can be both good and bad. It can be good because social media allows us to communicate with people that we may normally have not had access to because of distance and language barriers. There are also many other benefits to social media; such as the ability for businesses to reach a global consumer base and relatives to stay in contact from miles away.

Unfortunately, one of the down sides to social media is the impact it has on individuals and their self-esteem. A lot of people, adults included, use social media to validate their self-worth in society. Many people only have interaction with others by way of their social media accounts and the strive on a daily basis to make other people “like” them. What they fail to realize is that some of those people liking their content, whether it is photos, memes or statuses, don’t really know or like them as a person and would not ever support their endeavors in the real world where it matters.

For instance, being a radio show host I offer independent artists the opportunity to have their music played on my show. I did this because I was constantly receiving messages with links to YouTube videos from artists asking me to watch, like and share their videos. However, many of those artists weren’t generating revenue from their video content on YouTube. So what’s the point in me liking your art when my ‘like’ is not helping you to make money from your art? To me it was a waste of time. So I offered artists another, more traditional method, by which they could be heard, not just liked. A many of them have stated that they have seen an increase in the number of PAID downloads of their music as a result.

Artists and musicians aren’t the only people impacted. Aspiring models, actors and others are in the same boat. People love the way they look on Instagram and like their pictures on Facebook, but that doesn’t help if those same people aren’t going to see the actors in plays, movies or aren’t watching their television shows, and…. well…. everyone wants to be an Instagram model nowadays, so you can imagine how stiff that competition is. Getting a lot of likes on Instagram doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be booked for the next Dolce & Gabbana, or Macy’s campaign anymore than for the local county fair at this point.

Part of the issue is the façade that big brands portray to consumers as well. When big brands seek partnerships or endorsements, outside of professional athletes and well-known celebrities, they often seek individuals in large part due to the quantity of their social media following more than the quality of their followers, the person’s power to influence those that follow them or their own loyalty to the big brand as a consumer.  This makes everyday social media users and those with dreams of success and stardom believe that they only way to be successful is to have a huge following on social media.

What’s the use if your followers can’t be converted into consumers?

For instance, reality show stars are now being cast in movie roles that actors/actresses fight and train for, simply because they have a larger social media following, but they don’t actually do anything. The movie studios do this because they hope that the reality show star will give them free advertising for their movie. True enough, the advertising is free, but what movie studios fail to realize is that everyone that follows that reality show star on social media isn’t really a loyal fan who would buy a ticket to see them star in a movie.

Being in media has afforded me the opportunity to hear what everyday people honestly think about others. I don’t know what it is but me, but people love to talk to and confide in me. I hear it all the time “I just follow them because I think they are funny/I want to see what people are saying about them; but I’d never spend my money going to see them perform/sing/dance, etc.” And that’s the hard truth that a lot of people don’t know when they have dreams and goals of Instafame.

Consider the newest social media darlings, The Westbrooks. They are being called the black version of the Kardashians. I wouldn’t consider that a compliment personally, but maybe they do. They have millions of combined followers on Instagram and a reality show on a popular cable network. On the show, we get to witness the sisters attempt to do what their father (a successful businessman), suggests they do; monetize their social media following. We also get to see their friends either support their attempts (backyard pool parties) or try to use them for their own attempts at gaining clientele (club openings). Which is probably where the Kardashian comparison comes into play. It seems that the “power” their wield over their social media minions could be used more productively than to endorse hair extensions and pop bottles in nightclubs. They all seem to be intelligent young women, with guidance from their hardworking parents, who didn’t always have it easy, so they understand building success in a more traditional way to acquire longevity.

So why shouldn’t The Westbrooks be able to do something bigger and more impactful with their branding than what everyone else on Instagram is doing?

Time will only tell when it comes to how far things will go for The Westbrooks. They’ll either make change, make waves or be replaced by the next hot group of pretty sisters on the internet. In the meantime, I hope that they serve as a lesson on how fleeting and intrusive Instafame without strategic preparation can be. I also hope that at some point we move away from the façade of what makes people successful and show examples of more men and women using their influence on social media for more than monetization. Those people exist. They may not have millions of followers, but they have quality followers, who are positively impacted by them, myself included. Big brands aren’t paying attention to those types of social media influencers….yet. But that is something that I also hope will change so that being attractive isn’t the only talent left for people to have in order to become successful.
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Real Women Won’t Hold You Back

There’s something terribly wrong with this picture. Women, especially the younger ones under 35, are always crying about men lacking ambition, drive, focus, determination and commitment, but those same women do everything possible to undermine, discourage and sabotage the men who do. They think that being a real woman means having a man. They think that being a good woman means chasing a man. They are even so foolish to think they can get and keep a man by threatening and harassing other women. It never works in their favor, yet they are determined to try.

I feel bad for men who are surrounded by women who themselves don’t want anything more out of life  other than to be “hood”, “liked”  and “ratchet”.

To put it bluntly, there’s a THOT TAKEOVER in progress in this world, and they are doing their best to try to take our promising men down with them. Yes, the thotish behavior of women is negatively impacting the success of men of every generation and will for generations to come if it’s allowed to spread. It’s difficult enough to lay the foundation for our sons to grow up and become strong, decisive, productive members of society, but when you add a thot to the equation, you make the mathematics impossible to solve for any man.

I’m a feminist, who also loves men. No matter how much heartache I’ve had in past relationships, I have a tremendous amount of affection towards the male gender. I have learned a lot about myself and men specifically in many areas of my life because of the men who are and have been apart of it.  It’s not always easy to do, but I can say that because I am not bitter and angry,  like some women, I have built awesome rapports with men personally and professionally. I have the respect of these men because of the kind of woman I am, and the way I conduct myself; not because of how many fans I have, or don’t, and not because of sex.

When it comes to sex, I have no problems being celibate. Keep in mind that I’m not practicing celibacy because I can’t get a man. The problem I’ve always had is that my sex appeal attracts too many men and often they aren’t the kind of men I’d want in my life. It’s the combination of pheromones and the long legs that start at the floor and come all the way up to make an ass out of themselves, that causes me problems with men… or so I’ve been told.

Celibacy is a character, esteem and strength builder.

Celibacy helps me to focus on myself on a deeper level and have a clearer mind so that I will have better discernment when I do decide to date a man. Celibacy shows that I can be sexy without having to have sex. Because of celibacy, I can tell which men are worthy of my time, attention and energy, and which ones are not. Further, because I don’t chase men, I don’t hate on women who have a man, and I don’t compete with thots, I’m self-assured, confident, successful, and I don’t share my body with every good-looking, charming man who wants it. Those are just some of the many characteristics that men actually find attractive about me and other good women in the world. Thots don’t have those qualities going for them. Thots are selfish. They are attention whores who need to be validated at every turn. They like to use a lot of words and can’t say anything meaningful or valuable. They can’t bring anything to the table, not even a pitcher of water because they concentrate more on how cute they are than being smarter or successful. They are braggadocious about their sexuality, and overly aggressive towards men that have absolutely no interest in them because of it.

Men are comfortable with women who don’t try to manipulate them,  who can speak to them like they are adults and allow them to make informed decisions for themselves. Any man who has ever said he didn’t want to pursue a relationship with me wasn’t harassed or belittled. He was set free to do whatever he thought was best for him at that time. Any woman he decided he did want to be with or even showed him attention after me wasn’t harassed by me either. Why? Because I don’t need to prove myself or my womanhood to any one. What does that resolve? Nothing.

In my personal relationships, sometimes men later realize that I may have been the better woman and sometimes they don’t, but they can never say I wasn’t a good woman towards them when they were with me and they can’t say I’m crazy because I can’t handle rejection either. Thots hate rejection. It hurts their feelings because they lack maturity and self-esteem. Thots are quick to attack the next woman in a man’s life, while real women know that they have other options that they can take advantage of.

I learned early on how to be a motivating factor and a supportive woman to a man. It’s not hard, but not everyone can do it either. It’s not about the material things. It’s not about being loud and making it rain in the clubs. It’s not about proving you’re the baddest bitch in a room (that woman doesn’t have to prove anything because everyone else already knows she is). It’s not about cooking a struggle meal or giving good sex either. That’s how thots think.

Real women, grown women, know better.  Grown women know that men mature at different stages, ages and for different reasons. We as women can’t always motivate and nurture men throughout every one of these phases, but we do know that when a man seeks something better for himself of his own accord, he will find and want the woman who will help him accomplish that. He’s not going to give his attention to the woman who is telling him he can’t, he shouldn’t, she doesn’t want him to, or the woman trying to sabotage all of his opportunities and relationships because she fears losing something that wasn’t truly hers to begin with – him. After all, if he was hers, they’d be married and supporting each others dreams and goals.

There’s a vast difference between a good woman who knows how to have a man’s back and a thot who only wants to hold a man back. A thot knows that him moving forward in his life, growing, maturing and becoming successful in spite of her, means that she has no power over him.

Real women don’t seek to have power over men.

Not our husbands, not our sons, not our brothers. We seek to co-exist and partner with men so that we can have a stronger dynamic in this world. There’s so many forces against us already as women, we don’t need to be anymore combative with each other or over any man.

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Relationship Goals

There’s been a lot of cute memes and videos circulating on the internet with #RelationshipGoal(s) examples. Everything from hugging and holding hands, to being handcuffed and wearing matching shoes. Being a woman who has had a multitude of bad relationships that included hugging, holding hands, wearing matching shoes and the occasional handcuffs (please reference some of my blogs or short stories if you don’t know what I mean), those things just aren’t a relationships priority for me.

Although the idea of a relationship lasting for a decent period of time is a foreign concept for me, if I were ever afforded the opportunity to have a healthy, successful partnership with a man who loves and respects me, my relationship goals would include honesty, communication, building wealth and leaving a legacy behind for our grandchildren. We can have great sex, of course, and dress nice, live a comfortable lifestyle, travel and such, however having mutual respect, admiration and support for each other’s professional endeavors, talents, ideas and ambition would be what separates the good from the best, in the way that I view a successful relationship for myself now.

Having someone who encourages you to be the best version of yourself in spite of what others say about you, can make a difference in your self esteem as well as in your bank account balance.
Someone who encourages you to take care of yourself, mentally, physically and emotionally, so that you can look and feel good, as well as combat stress that comes from obstacles you can’t control, can be the difference between you being happy and having a heart attack. Having someone who respects your sacrifices and struggles to grow within your purpose, instead of someone trying to change who you are to fit their agenda, can be the wind beneath your wings.

But that’s not how a lot of people view relationships anymore.

A lot of people look at relationships as something they need to make them whole and happy. That isn’t the case. Relationships are meant to enhance who you already are and increase the happiness you that already have as an individual. Seeking happiness from someone else in a relationship will not make you a whole person. And if, because it happens, the relationship ends, then what do you do? Sadly, some people resort to extremes because they can’t let go of the person they believed made them happy. That’s not healthy for anyone involved.

A lot of people also hold a lot of bitterness when their relationships end. It’s normal. It’s human. But you have to let it go so that you can move forward and have the opportunity to do it better the next time around. Try to refrain from wishing ill towards someone when the relationship ends. That only creates a void within yourself. When you genuinely care for someone else you want them to be happy, healthy and whole, not because of you, but even without you around.

I’ve always admired power couples. Personally that is what I’d like to have if and/or when I get involved with someone again (yes I’m cynical about the possibilities. Again, reference my past blog posts).  Power couples are typically two separately successful individuals who come together and complement each other’s drive, ambition, talent, focus, etc. etc. etc. There are thousands of said power couples in the world. Some more successful and popular than others, but all equally beautiful to me.

These couples probably wouldn’t have the relationships they have if they depended solely upon each other for their success or their happiness. They came to the table as two people with a lot to offer as individuals and saw that in each other, made a decision to combine together and grow towards something they wanted. That is what I think it takes to reach your #relationshipgoals.

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Turn Down For What?

Often we go through our lives concerned about what others think to the degree that we diminish ourselves. Too often, women in particular, down play our talents, dumb ourselves down to seem less educated or intelligent and quiet ourselves up to seem less intimidating. There’s that word – intimidating. I’ve heard that a lot  in my life and until I reached my 30s I honestly didn’t understand what it meant. Men often said I was ‘intimidating‘ to them and that’s why it is difficult for men to ask me out or commit to a relationship with me. I thought it meant I was doing something wrong. I later came to the realization that wasn’t the case. In fact what I grew to understand was that

Strong Women Only Intimidate Weak Men ~ Dr. Farrah Gray 

Recently, the extremely talented Mo’Ne Davis was verbally attacked  on Twitter by a male college student who called her a “slut” because he was jealous of her.  Yes, jealous. That was his motivation whether he would admit it or not. He didn’t like that Mo’Ne Davis was shining brightly, so he called her a “slut” on social media in an attempt to take her down a notch and throw shade at her. He wanted Mo’Ne to turn down so he could build himself up. His envy of her success drove him to behave like a jealous person does – ignorantly – and he lost his opportunity in return. Mo’Ne, being the exceptional young woman that she is, forgave him, asked his college to reinstate him and publicly stated;

“Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone deserves a second chance. I know he didn’t mean it in that type of way. I know people get tired of seeing me on TV. But sometimes you got to think about what you’re doing before you do it.

I admire her forgiveness, however, I have issue with her saying “I know people get tired of seeing me on TV” and here’s why:

As women, in general we turn our light, our shine, and our accomplishments down too much, too often and to make other people feel better about themselves just because they want to see our light lessened.  We do it in the work place, we do it at social events, we do it at family reunions and we do it with the men in our lives. As a result, we are paid less and disrespected more. We shouldn’t do this to ourselves, each other or teach other young women, like Mo’Ne, that they should either. If being successful in any shape, form or field results in others feeling envious of you, that isn’t your fault and it isn’t something you should apologize for. You shouldn’t stop doing the great things you are doing in your life or career because someone feels intimidated. You can’t control other people feeling jealous of you. You don’t have to lessen yourself to build others up. If a person’s jealousy doesn’t motivate them to do better for themselves, that’s entirely too bad for them.

I no longer care about how intimidated someone else feels when it comes to my appearance, my success, my intelligence, my height or anything else that makes other people feel ‘some type of way‘ when I enter a room or express myself.  Especially not a man. That is their issue to resolve, not mine. I will continue to be the amazing woman I am and anyone, man or woman, who can’t handle it doesn’t have to stand in my sunshine. They can go find a dark shadow to lurk under. And if Mo’Ne Davis was my daughter, I’d tell her the same thing.

The next time you encounter a situation where someone is attempting to diminish your shine, say this to yourself until you feel it resonate within yourself like the sun itself

I shine brightly, I am intelligent, I am successful, I am happy, I am beautiful, I am self assured, I am gifted, I am talented, I am loved. I live within my purpose, and I strive for personal greatness, so turn down for what?