Where Did We Learn to Put Him First?
One thing I value about age, for the most part, is the accrued wisdom. From years of doing the same thing and getting burnt each time, I have learned that it is okay for things that we once valued to be offed or die a natural death. One has to get tired of the insanity, and that in some cases takes years.
Putting men’s needs over ourselves is something we have witnessed. It may not be from our parents (the lucky ones) but from the societal narrative that rumbles on. Women are increasingly vocal about what we want. From equal pay to rights over our reproductive systems, we are more unapologetic than before. However, something undesirable persists.
It was subtle, but it took reading Peace from Broken by Iyanla Vanzant to spot it in my life. Granted, she had a difficult upbringing, and it would be unfair to compare that with my life. Something that did keep coming up is how women place men before themselves, children and others. I began to see how I had kept quiet when my needs went unmet, how I didn’t want to be called a nag. How I thought being the star girlfriend would get me heard. How I said, it was okay for him to skip dates so that he can chill and hang at the barber shop with friends.
The injustice of sacrificing oneself
As you can tell, none of that worked. When I took a magnifying glass and later a microscope to my dysfunction, I realized I was looking for the love of my absent father. As you will learn, should you stumble on a similar truth about you is this; you will never get it. It is a painful admission to make, even as a woman in her 20s well established but still struggling with relationships.
As I moved past the sadness, words of affirmations unexpectedly started following. I always thought myself loving, kind, loyal, and funny and the works. However, it still seemed that I was having issues believing what I knew to be true. See, the realization that I couldn’t find my father in these men put an end to the insanity. The clarity is what made me realize how I was treating myself was an injustice. I should not have to sacrifice my wants and needs for the sake of a man who won’t meet them.
Sure, this was some grown stuff to realize, but I am thankful. Was it painful? Quite, but as I realized I am worthy for what I ask for, I am glad I made the transition. Consider joining me, won’t you?