Friday, July 10, 2020
When a Man Tells You He Doesn’t Want You, Believe Him
Everyone is speculating, pontificating, and commentating about Jada’s entanglement. I ain’t got a dog in that fight. I am in no position to judge. But what I do know is that relationships are complicated—the good, bad, and ugly. My twenty-one years of marriage taught me many great lessons. Its dramatic and f**ked up ending taught me the most.
I am not here to throw shade. I am not here to tell the bitter woman’s tale. I don’t have a reason to be bitter. I have every reason to be grateful.
My marriage was a fairy tale without a happy ending. It was relationship goals for many. Or so it seemed.
But see that’s the thing about fairy tales. They are not real.
Relationships are real.
Reality is not always pretty. Reality is full of ups and downs. Reality is full of hurt and pain. Reality is full of joy though. We just can’t expect it to be joyful all of the time. But we should not immediately throw it all away when it is tarnished by imperfection.
There is no perfect relationship.
Regardless of the duration, jubilations always come with tribulations.
And that’s some real shit.
I still remember the day my first husband (because he won’t be my last) told me that he didn’t want me. “I’m not happy. I don’t want to be married anymore” were his exact words. I could not believe it. A few days later, he told me again. That came in a conversation where he had a moment of hesitation, but confirmed his initial declaration. It hurt a little less that time—not much less, but a little less. The third time he told me in unequivocal terms that he did not want to be married to me anymore and it pierced my heart so deeply that I wanted to die.
In fact, I drove to Atlanta to disappear. I didn’t know what that meant. But I knew I did not want to be in this world. I cried all night in my hotel room, despondent, depleted, and defeated.
God got me up the next moment. I did not want to rise, but He got me up anyway. I got dressed. I put on a smile and went downstairs. I came to Steve Harvey’s Act Like a Success Conference. I showed up in my fabulous on the outside and I was broke-down and f**ked up on the inside. But I showed up anyway.
And then Steve Harvey dropped the greatest wisdom on me like a bag of bricks. At some point during his monologue he said, “When a man tells you he doesn’t want you, believe him.” Well, damn! His words stung like a wasp, but delivered me from the misery of wanting a man that didn’t want me.
By the time the conference was over, I closed the door on my relationship and prepared myself to move the f**k on.
Believing those words, “I don’t want you anymore” was liberating. It gave me permission to free myself from the hurt that came with them. My life was not dependent on being wanted. My life was no tied to longing for someone who had released me to be free.
I don’t know if men really appreciate the power of those words. I don’t know if they say them callously. I know if they say them truthfully. I don’t know if they say them with permanency. But I do know that the woman who receives them has no obligation to remain loyal to the man who says them. That’s a very great illustration of “You can’t have your cake and eat it too.”
F**k you and the cake!
Believing those words gave me a great freedom to find myself again. And that’s just what I did. I began to embrace the woman that was loosed. More importantly, it opened my eyes to see what I wanted. It gave me the ability to understand what I truly desired.
I am grateful that I heard those words. I am more grateful that I believed them. It freed me from forever longing for something that was not meant to be. I released me to the possibilities of finding something more fulfilling.
The best thing that those words taught me is the power of when a man shows you who he is, believe him.
He’ll show that he doesn’t want you long before he says it. You’ve got to believe that shit too.
See that’s the problem with fairy tales and relationship goals. We only see what we want to see and we don’t believe what we do see. We want forever so badly that we look right past the reality of what is.
Don’t get me wrong. I want forever. I just understand that forever doesn’t always last forever. What I really understand that to get to forever, you must face the frog you thought was your prince. Again, I’m not throwing shade. I have embraced that love is not always perfect and neither is the one we love. We are not perfect either.
Love is not perfect. It may have an entanglement or two. And whether that entanglement is okay or not ain’t nobody’s business but the people directly involved in the entanglement/relationship. We can all sit on the outside and judge. It ain’t our business.
Many of the relationships that I admired had entanglements. It broke my heart when I learned of them. It made me question if love was really real. It made me question if I could really believe in love. When the entanglements of my own relationship were revealed, I really questioned why love was not like it seemed in the movies.
That’s because Hollywood is not real. We can’t expect the people in Hollywood to be anything other than real.
I have mad respect for Will and Jada. It took a lot of courage to embrace the vulnerability to lay it all out on that red table for the world to see. Will had to face the consequence of his words. Jada had to face the truth of her entanglement. I am not here to say who’s right and who’s wrong. I don’t know. I don’t really care.
What I hope that we all take away from it that we have to face the power of our truth. It is what it is. Ugly, raw, dirty, yet pure.
An entanglement always ravels at the end. It always has the possibility to unravel the path to what is real, what is worth fighting for, and what needs to be released. If you truly take the time to unravel what got you to the entanglement to begin with, you can truly find the healing you both deserve.
The best part of those words is the healing. I hope Will, Jada and August find theirs.
I am grateful to have received mine.
Now if we can all move TF on and find ours.