Love After Being Cheated On


You’ve come a long way since you found yourself in a relationship with a cheater. You’ve learned to love yourself and put the cheater in the past. You’ve fought a battle between your heart and mind. You’ve taken your time to understand what went wrong at least as far as you’re concerned. You’ve had your alone time to cry, scream and blame. You’ve taken your head out of the shell to see what’s ahead. You’ve started dating. You’ve taken it slowly to learn about someone. You’ve given yourself the time to process what you want in the future. You’ve listened to your brain as much as your heart. You’re ready for love.

Love is a process, and there are no shortcuts that will lead to a lasting relationship. I believe this is even true with relationships where it’s love at first sight. You have to take one day at a time to let a relationship grow. The thought most people don’t get is a relationship should never stop growing. When you’ve been hurt, it’s only natural to be extra cautious in your feelings. You can’t let those cautious feelings make you so removed from what your heart feels that it effects your relationship. It’s not that what your heart feels is wrong. It’s that your heart can cloud the truth. The only way to get through the cloud is with time. Everyday has to be an awakening to your relationship. You have to both communicate daily and truthfully. It will become a problem if one person holds anything back. There will always be a very, very small thought in the back of your mind that will question things about your new person. You ask questions and keep asking until that small thought is something you can live with comfortably. You need to talk to that person about what happened so it is understood why you are taking it slowly or asking questions over and over again.

You’ve found love again, and that in itself is awesome. Some people never rebound from being cheated on. They stay closed off emotionally, so to find love again is awesome. Be happy, and enjoy it. Just don’t ignore the warning signs because there will be signs. You struggled to understand what you want so don’t short yourself. Remember you should never look for someone to make you happy. What you want is someone to enhance the happiness you’ve found for yourself. 

The person that you’ve now entrusted with your heart and mind must be open about their past too. I know some people when they start a new serious relationship aren’t interested in the past because they feel the past has no baring on the future. The past is just that, the past. I feel you should talk about the past because you can learn about that person from how the past was dealt with. I mean I want to know how, what and why. When you are being told about their past, listen to your mind and ask questions. Don’t ignore the signs. You can learn a lot about a person just by listening. The best part of communication is listening to what another person is saying and asking questions. This is not for a person you are just casually dating. This is for that person you feel will be in for the long haul. I cannot say it enough. Take your time. This is not a race to the altar. Love is compromises, but the compromises have to be good for both of you. It should never be that when you compromise, you give up more than you really want. That would not be good. Remember, if a relationship is superficial, like a plant without water, it will die. It might die slowly, but it will die. You have to always be true to yourself. I wish you well in your new relationship.

Blogs
Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle
Dating After Cheating
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Surviving The Art of Cheating

Breaking Up: A Heart and Mind Struggle


There is a fierce heart and mind struggle when a relationship is over, no matter what the reason. Breaking up due to cheating, once the anger is over, is difficult, although for some, it should be cut and dry. Love is an emotion which has no logic and your mind can be your truth. Your loved one cheats, and while you know it should be over, it’s not that easy. You brings all kinds of emotions until accept the truth. There isn’t anything we can do about our emotions but our mind can change hundreds of times. Let me get a little more in-depth, so you can visualize what I’m saying. 

You have been in a relationship for one year, and then you find out your other half is cheating. You don’t just stop loving that person. You might be angry for a while, but the love is still there. Your heart tries to justify the relationship to you by making you feel that maybe, just maybe, there is something you should have done or can do to fix what’s wrong. Your mind, however, is telling you the relationship wasn’t all that, there were so many issues that you ignored, and that this was bound to happen. It’s almost like having a devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other, except there really isn’t a devil – it’s your truth. A breakup can cause you to think that a relationship was much better than it really was. You can be near perfect and so into being that you don’t see that maybe that isn’t what the other person wants or you can flip this and the other person is doing all he/she can but it’s you’re still not satisfied. The heart won’t tell you this, but what it will say is: “go talk to him/her or just pick up the phone and call.” The heart wants to give the relationship every opportunity to continue, even though your mind tells you it’s a dead end street. The mind wants you to move on, not try to justify and fix. 

Breaking up is not easy, and if you’ve been in a relationship for a long time, it’s very difficult to see how to move on. It can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. This heart and mind struggle is part of the process of breaking up, and in order to get to your truth you have to go through a process of self-examination and being able to look at your relationship for what really was. It’s very hard to be objective when your heart is broken, no matter how much you’re hurting. The heart/mind struggle is when you have to decide which one you will listen to; not just listen, but also act upon. You can try to go back, or you can go through the process and trust that, in time, your heart will heal and you can move on. The choice is yours of which way you go, but don’t rush to any decision. Take your time. Treat it like two boxers feeling each other out. There’s no quick knockout. You keep dancing around until you feel that you are ready to deliver that final blow to your heart that’s holding onto your ex. I think most people who have dealt with a breakup or are going through a breakup know that time is the healer of whatever kind of hurt you have. The heart mind/struggle is not just for breakups but can looked at in all things that have hurt you. I guess, when you love someone, no matter what he/she has done, the emotional bond is a bond that is not easily broken, and to get to that point takes one day at a time to get the strength to deliver that knockout punch. 

The next blog will be: You found that next person, or so you think.

Blogs
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversation
Dating After Cheating

Dating After Cheating


You don’t realize how strong you really are until your heart is broken and you go through the process of making yourself feel whole again. It takes time, sometimes a long time, to heal a broken heart, but it’s not a race you need to win – take the time you need to know who you really are. We sometimes forget that in a relationship you give part of yourself to make compromises. Remember that when it’s over you can take that back. Take ownership and to learn what YOU want, not anybody else. 
Dating is not something you should rush into, especially if you want it to turn into something serious. You have to take your time to get to know people as friends first. A relationship without friendship will never be a lasting relationship. When you date someone, don’t look at them as a potential love interest, but as a person you just enjoy going out with, with no sex involved. You should get to know the person first, and that takes times. I don’t mean just the good act that people put on, but the real stuff they hide deep inside because it may not be so nice to face. It’s up to you to decide if that is something you can and are willing to deal with. It takes a honest discussion with yourself. The more you date, the more you get to see not only what you’re looking for, but also what you don’t want from a person. Be patient. Don’t get serious too fast and throw yourself headlong into a situation just because all your friends have somebody. You are still fragile in your heart, so don’t go on a date and think you’re in love just because someone said all the right things on that first date. The second date you might see a totally different person that you don’t like at all. When you feel like you are ready to date, do it with another couple. This way, you have someone to make you feel a little less nervous and you have a second set of eyes and ears on the person you are dating. If possible, even if it may sounds strange, don’t just date one person – remember these are supposed to be casual, amicable dates, not romantic dates with no ‘hidden agenda’. Romance shouldn’t be in your thought process for a long while. If you think it’s a ‘love at first sight’ kind of situation, what you need to do is go back home and stay put until that feeling goes away. Sure enough, there are rare occasions when you meet someone and both of you immediately know that love is in the air, but since you just got over a bad experience, I wouldn’t trust my judgement. Again, take your time, have some fun and be true to yourself. You want to feel whole, and if you think that sleeping with somebody right away is going to fix you, then you’re wrong. You will only hate yourself the next day, don’t do it. This is another situation where the intervention, the interference if you will, of another couple could help you avoid making that big mistake. The more you go out and the more people you meet, the more you can and will trust yourself. There’s nothing worse than having your heart and mind fighting, and that happens once you get into a relationship. Don’t forget all you’ve been through to get to this point. Another thing you need to steer clear of at all costs is comparing people to your ex. That’s a big no. You should never compare and contrast people, and if you do then you aren’t ready to date. You still have some issues that haven’t been resolved. You have to be able to look at each person individually, and not judge that person based on your past experiences. Everyone has their own qualities and you need to accept them based on what you think will contribute to your happiness, regardless of what your relationships were like in the past. You want to be yourself, not who you think that person wants. You, and only you, know who you are, so don’t put on any act because eventually it will be exposed. Have some fun dating, and enjoy just being able to breathe some fresh air, because now you are free.

The next blog will be about the struggle between heart and mind when a relationship ends.

Blogs:
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating
Breaking Out After The Breakup
Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations.

Sex and Money: Vulnerable Conversations


There are many reasons that people cheat, and usually sex and money are two things that are high on the list of reasons for someone to step outside of their relationship. I’m taking a step back in advising you on how to get beyond the hurt of finding out your partner, straight or gay, has cheated on you. When you get wrapped up in the emotions of love, there usually isn’t a conversation about money. You’re probably already engaged in sex, so no conversation is usually needed unless you aren’t open minded to new positions or you’re just lousy at it. (There are people that are lousy at sex.) You can get so involved in the emotional part of the relationship that you forget about your own needs because you’re usually more involved on making your relationship work, which means you’re being accommodating. This is a big mistake. You can’t keep it up, and as time goes on, you’re going to feel very unfulfilled.

Sex should never, ever be a one-way street. You want your gratification just like you’re try to give gratification to the other person. When you forgo your needs to please someone else, you are asking for a huge problem as time goes on. Sex needs to be part of a conversation you engage in, so you know that mutual needs are being met. If it’s bad, but you really feel that this person is someone you would like to invest time and energy in, then you have to speak up. No, it’s not easy to say to someone, “You should do this or that to satisfy me,” but think about it, if you don’t in the beginning, then as time goes on, you will be looking for this gratification outside of your relationship. Then you will want to have the conversation that you should have had months ago. You have to introduce the sex conversation slowly, and doing a show and tell is a perfect way to approach the subject. There’s also the after sex glow, when you’re both relaxing and enjoying the moment; a perfect time to have the discussion. Intimacy is not sex, but intimacy can lead to sex. Make sure you have intimacy. Intimacy would be kissing, holding hands, anything short of actually engaging in performing a sexual act, therefore you can be naked and have intimacy going on. You just have to realize that intimacy is also the ability to have delicate conversations that may hurt the person’s feelings, coming from you in a way that is loving and shows that you understand how that person is feeling. How would you like someone to break it down to you if you were on the other end of such a conversation? 

Money is a very, very, very hard conversation for two people to have. Unlike the sex conversation, which should happen in the beginning of any and all relationships, money should be discussed as soon as you feel that this person is the one. There’s no reason to do this with every person you get involved with because then your business will end up just out there to be talked about by everybody. (If you’re rich, you might not care.) If you feel every relationship is the one, then you have a problem that needs to be addressed before you have any relationship. The only way you will know how to progress in your relationship regarding financial items is to discuss what each of you are bringing to the table. Actually, if you’re going to the movies and dinner, who will pay? A conversation does not need to happen until you know each other well enough to know that no one feels that he/she is being taken advantage of. This conversation is much different from a what you have in your bank account conversation. That’s a deep conversation that exposes you financially, so you must be so sure that living together or marriage is on the horizon before having this conversation. If you’re giving, giving, and giving, and the other person is just taking, this will almost certainly lead to cheating. The person that’s taking will be the one that cheats because that person doesn’t have to work on the financial aspects of a relationship. The giver will not be the cheater because all of their time is spent trying to keep the other person financially happy. There is, for certain, a financial aspect to a relationship. If there isn’t, how could you buy things like a house or have any type of living arrangement? 

No one wants to feel used, and if you get nothing in return, either in sex or money, that is how you will feel used. It might take you some time to actually realize what’s going on because you are so busy trying to keep the relationship going that you get blindsided when the truth of what’s really going on hits you. Conversations in the beginning of a relationship can save a lot of heartache as the relationship progresses. It is not easy, and the longer you put it off, the more vulnerable the relationship will be.

Blogs
The Art of Cheating
Surviving The Art of Cheating
Breaking Out After the Breakup

Next blog: Dating After The Breakup.

Pull Off The Label

We are not cans of vegetables in a store that require a label to be stacked in the same area. We are people, so why do we need so many labels? There are so many labels that seem to define people that I’m starting to think that it’s made up. I’m black, female, gay, and married, but none of those define me just like those words or similar words don’t define you. One of the reasons you label vegetables is so that when you open them, you know what’s inside. Labeling people tells you nothing about the person inside. Labeling is very broad way of saying “This is me”, but why do you need to say that? It would be so nice if we could pull off the labels and people were just that, a person with a name for identification, and that’s it. “I am Anita” – that’s my identification, and that has nothing to do with who I am inside. We have got too hung up on these labels without knowing the person who is assigned a label. When you meet someone, you should look at the person, not if he is gay, straight, transgender, or anything else, just the person. We have a superficial world that looks too much at looks before seeing the person inside the body. It doesn’t matter if you are beautiful or ugly as hell if what’s inside should count more than what you look like and what label should be attached to your person. Why is it so important that you give yourself a label or a label is given to you? Does that label tell the person about you? I hope not because this world is worse off than I thought if all we are is a bunch of people trying to fit in a label like string beans in a can. When I was a kid, I saw these two people walking down the street. They were gay, I assumed. I wondered why people can’t just love who they wanted, as they were not hurting anyone. I learned as I got older that labels are used as a way to hurt people, and labels are used to define people as a certain sexual being. Again, why do you need a label to describe your sexuality? If you’re transgender, great but I rather know the person inside that transgender body. I don’t care if you’re transgender because that’s not what drew you to me. It’s that person inside that body that I want to get to know and love. I’m just saying I would rather just know your name. This doesn’t just apply to gay people but straight people as well. I don’t care if you’re straight, I just want to know your name and get to know that person inside. We are all different inside, and that is what makes us special. If you were to put all the Anita’s in the world together, we would still be different because of the person inside: there is no need to label that Anita as straight or that Anita as gay, what is the point? I really hope one day that people will stop with the labeling because it’s a false way to define someone.  It would be so much better if we pulled off the labels and just looked at the person. Maybe that would make the world a better place. It might help with all this divisiveness that is going on. It might help people to truly understand the next person without making assumptions. It could put love in the world and get rid of some of the hatred we have for certain groups of labeled people. Please take the time to pull the label off and look at the person inside before you judge. The next time someone says I’m pansexual, ask them who are they really inside without the label.

No Shame in Going to a Trade School


For some kids, the stress of whether to go to college is a pressure cooker waiting to explode, especially if they do not want to go. College is not for every kid, but parents often put their ambitions for their children on them. We are well aware of the extent some parents go to to get their kids into a university. Is college for the kid or for the parents? There was a time when the military was the go-to source of jobs for kids, especially African American kids. Parents looked at the military as a way out of the ghetto, which could eat their kids up and spit them out on the nearest-drug infested corner. That seems to have changed somewhat as military standards have changed. It wasn’t so much that parents didn’t want their kids to enlist; rather, it’s more that kids weren’t being accepted so readily.

There is an alternative out there that most parents fail to push, and that’s work that’s done with your hands. These are the construction workers, electricians, and plumbers, just to name a few. These jobs offer good salaries with much less cost to the student. I believe it’s how these types are jobs are perceived that makes them seem on the surface less important than the professions of a doctor or lawyer. Doesn’t it sound so much better to say “my child is a lawyer” than “my child is a garbage man”?

There are many kids out here who have no desire to attend college, but feel that they have no other option, so they go. Years ago, getting an associate’s degree was a sign that you’d made it, but that is no longer true. You need a bachelor’s degree, and with some occupations a master’s degree, to have a chance of getting that high-paying job. There are also cases where high-paying jobs still elude students because they haven’t scored high enough for Corporate America to even consider them. For some of our next-generation kids, high school is all they can see; they see nothing beyond that. It’s a strange thought that when you were a kid, you wanted to be a doctor, a lawyer, anything that was glamorized on television. When the drug craze came about, television started to glamorize that quick money, and then kids started to go in that direction. I’m not saying this happens to every kid, but enough kids get drawn into easy money and a flashy lifestyle. Then the technology craze hit, and now we have some kids sitting in front of a screen before they can even talk. In a sense, they are raised by screens. They have little if any ambition and college, is a definite no-no. 

My grandson is in the eleventh grade, and I often ask him, “What are you interested in”? Because everything I suggest is a NO! When he was small, he had dreams; what happened to them? He isn’t a bad student, but is an average student who won’t be getting into any Ivy League school. That’s OK because there’s an alternative: a trade school. A trade school occupation is something to be proud of; it’s like building a house, something you put your back into. In this type of profession, you can look at your hands, and see the ability to take something from nothing and made it real. There are trade school jobs that aren’t labor-intense, like web developer or dental hygienist, that a person can learn to do, and they can be proud of what they have accomplished. 

Parents, I think that you have to be honest in evaluating your child. Don’t try to make your child a college student when they have shown no desire, or when they’re just barely making it out of high school. It should be about giving them choices, and trade schools should be among the options that are discussed. I checked online, and these are some of the best jobs for trade school graduates: 1. Elevator Installer/repairer, medium salary $77,806 2. Radiation Therapist, medium salary $69,504 3. Web Developer, medium salary $58,448 4. Diagnostic Medical Sonographer, $55,106, 5. Electricians,$52,527. These salaries aren’t too shabby for a person not going to college. 
College is great for students who are going for themselves, not for their parents. However, college often involves a lot of debt, and offers no guarantees that graduates will be employed in their chosen field after they’ve sweated for multiple years to earn their degree. A trade school involves a lot less debt, and offers better chances of employment are better in one’s chosen field. Don’t sell your child short; give him/her every opportunity to succeed, even when college isn’t in the equation.