Dear Sista Friend,
I started dating my husband one week after I turned 18, he proposed when I was 19 and we got married when I was 21, so I won’t lie and say that I know what the current dating scene is like. Yet, my friends frequently ask me for relationship advice. Case and point, a few of my very close sista friends have come to me with concerns in this past week alone!
Therefore, they have inspired me to encourage other young sistas who may be second guessing their actions, lowering their standards, or blaming themselves for the potential suitors that disappoint them. Now I must note that I do not know everything, so my “advice” may not work for everyone; but, I do know that my sista friends deserve the same happiness that I have been blessed enough to have. The following are just a few questions/comments that I have been asked.
“What is wrong with me?”
Sista, nothing is wrong with you. Although you are beautifully and wonderfully made, not everyone will appreciate what you have to offer. People can make you feel as though you aren’t pretty enough, or fun enough, or smart enough, but understand that you possess traits that the right man will honor and cherish. God made you the way you are supposed to be, so the man he sends will love you for you.
“Are my standards too high?”
We all expect different things from our partners. Some of us value particular qualities that not all men we date will live up to. Sista, maintain your standards because as the saying goes, “If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.” A man that loves you will strive to meet your needs/wants and you will meet his. However, the caveat here is that we must understand that we should not expect our partners to be perfect because none of us are. I had to learn that my husband will not always adhere to my expectations and vice versa. I actually had to reevaluate my standards and determine which ones were absolutely necessary and which were actually pretty unreasonable or simply my personal preference. I eventually realized that as long as we agree on the things that matter (our religion, kids, morals, etc.), then my standards are met. If my husband at least believes that God is the head of our household then I certainly can overlook him not wanting to do the dishes every night!
“I just need closure.”
The thing about closure is that everyone may not define it the same way. I have a sista friend who will not have closure until the guy fully explains to her why they broke up. However, that guy may view closure as erasing her number out of his phone. Another guy may only have closure once he sees her move on to someone else. Some people still don’t have closure even after that! This could all get very confusing and before you know it no one has “closure”. Closure just means that something has come to an end, so if you want closure you have to truly be done with that person. As hard as it may be sista, you cannot let anyone hold you back from moving forward. You are tenacious. You know how to persevere. That’s all the closure you need.
“Where are all of the good black men?”
They are out there. My line sisters and I have discussed this concern on many occasions and we’ve come to the conclusion that you may not find your partner in the places you most frequent. One of my sista friends noticed that she would not find her future husband at our university, so she has always been open to searching elsewhere. On the other hand, one of my sista friends met her long-time boyfriend in college. I randomly met my husband in the food court at a mall in San Antonio. My mother met her husband when he stopped to help her with a flat tire. The possibilities are endless! This is a hot debate that could be discussed in an entirely different post, so my advice to you is to simply remain optimistic. You never know where or when you’ll meet him.
Sista friends, I do not have all of the answers. I cannot tell you what your partner may be thinking because I am not him. I cannot tell you how to know if you’re ready for marriage. I cannot tell you the top ten things every woman should look for in a man.
I can tell you that your Mr. Perfect Right is coming.
Bri Smocks is currently working on her Masters of Education at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX where she also received her B.A. of English in 2014. In addition, she student teaches at an all-male school during the day and tutors various students through a tutoring company in the evening. She enjoys reading Jodi Picoult novels, binge watching shows on Netflix and Hulu, and spending time with her husband of one year.