Oh, the neverending battle that is the well-intended advice that the women in our lives give. It’s usually unsolicited and almost always awfully outdated – but we often take it in our media-driven need to snag a man and believe it or not, I was guilty of this too.
Picture this if you can… a young, single mom who has met a dashing, older guy. She’s a little smitten and he’s saying all the right things – you do not want to mess this up, Cashé!
When I first met my now husband, I was not looking for a serious relationship or anything that could risk the cocoon I’d created for my son and me. I entered the courting stage with trepidation, but man… that spark!
Naturally, I turned to my friends to help give me the guidance that every single girl needs and they all gave me the same advice.
“Play hard to get.”
I know what you’re thinking, “girl, we’ve all been there.” but that was not the worst advice I received.
Not by a long shot and I was reminded of this during a Gmail search of old emails and found an old Facebook message notification (remember those?). It was from a colleague, we were talking about being in the beginning stages of a relationship and that I’d decided to move to Johannesburg to be closer to Paul.
The short of it is simple: Never, ever tell the man in your life anything about your emotions that would upset him.
Don’t tell him that moving from George to Johannesburg is a massive sacrifice. Don’t tell him when you are unhappy with a situation. Basically, don’t speak to him unless it’s the kind of thing he wants to hear.
Guys, I wish I could tell you that I brushed that off and didn’t let the insecurities of a young woman take control of my relationship. I didn’t – I took that advice. I spent a big chunk of my relationship with Paul censoring my emotions.
I’m going to give you three guesses on how that turned out.
Did you guess badly? Because you’d be right. It was terrible and I hated my relationship because of my self-imposed stupidity. I mean… the 40’s called, they want their housewife back.
Here is the problem with this strategy… I am very outspoken and very independent. How I went from a powerhouse woman to permission requesting girlfriend, I’ll never understand.
This naturally caused issues in my relationship and it took close to 2-years before I actually started opening up to Paul honestly and without censorship.
Women are designed to be so afraid of singledom that when a man enters your life, you’re told to submit to him. The problem with this kind of narrative is that it is archaic and women STILL feel inclined to be the little woman in a relationship.
Are we still teaching our daughters that a husband is the end goal? Is this still the kind of advice we are giving our friends? Is this the kind of advice you are getting?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic, and what the worst advice is that you’ve ever received.