“We” Is a Collective Effort

You know what’s uncomfortable? Being openly honest in relationships. Telling someone about themselves. Accepting someone’s criticism of you. What is greater and more impactful is growing and watching someone you love grow as well.

In this video clip of The Real (scrub to 3:55) the ladies briefly discussed what it would be like to complete a progress report on your partner…and I was like…

Here are three big problems in relationships:

-Constantly talking or arguing about the same issues without any progress made

-Not knowing when to walk away; walking away too soon or too late


What if all couples sat down once or twice a year to discuss/rate things like: the five love languages (physical touch, words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, gift giving), communication, finances, etc.? They would rate themselves and their partner’s contributions to the relationship. Then compare it against their partner’s ratings to see where they both align (or not). Ideally, this should entice conversation around strategies to build a better relationship.

First of all, the hope here is that people would be honest about their needs/wants, and be open to compliments and criticism.

Second, just like work evaluations, acknowledging the things that are done well further encourages one to continue doing what they do best. And similarly, setting goals for the future can help hold someone accountable.

The tricky part is deciding whether or not to use these progress reports as grounds for staying in or ending relationships. A lot of people leave relationships not knowing what they did wrong, or if it could have been fixed; I think this could be a solve for that. I also think progress reports should at least be mandatory for marriages. Is it mandatory, but people just don’t do it?

I’m curious to learn more about this in general and want to try it in my own relationship. 🙂











“Do you talk to all Uber drivers?”

Vasha from Long Island wrote my story before we even engaged in conversation. To him, I was a mother in my early 20s. After I debunked his assumptions, he questioned my sincerity when I said that I’m not a social person. It’s interesting that a person who knows nothing about you can create an entire rap sheet of who they think you are – something we have all done before and one of the many struggles of our human existence. Remember: we are biologically trained to compartmentalize people. Then, we pull in our personal experiences to help us figure out our next move. SoulPancake, a platform that “makes stuff that matters” – think: Kid President – mirrored my experience with Vasha, the Uber driver. There have been many documented, viral, first time encounters between strangers – from kissing, to getting in bed, to slapping  – and I’m obsessed with all of them. I don’t always talk to strangers because I’m usually suspended in what I call the purgatory for social interaction; I quietly battle between avoiding “stranger danger!” and being a kind human despite living in a world of unkind people. But when I do interact with strangers, I try to be compassionate, learn from and relate to them. The SoulPancake videos below (two of many) are out-loud, out of body, thought proving episodes of strangers learning the person in front of them. How many times did someone assume you were something other than who you know yourself to be? Please watch, and let me know your thoughts/experiences! 🙂



“You ain’t gonna text no one when you wit me…”

When I first heard Erykah Badu’s cover of Drake’s Hotline Bling, I decided right there that I would purchase her mixtape, But You Caint Use My Phone. Its thematic and funky R&B is the coolest sound I’ve listened to in a while. Never mind that Badu is one of my favorite singers. Yes I’m biased, but I know good music, so feel free to not be steered wrong by my recommendations. Listen to one of my favorite songs off the mixtape below. It’s titled Phone Down; other favorites include: What’s Yo Phone Number?, I’ll Call U Back, and Hello.  

I like this song because it addresses something our society struggles with – putting the phones down. Respect is HUGE to me and I believe that you can gauge the amount of respect your partner has for you by the amount of undivided attention he or she pays you. Badu knows what’s up. 😉



Sweet Dispositions: Fights in (Romantic) Relationships

Source: Everyday People Cartoons

Today I read an article “5 Fights Every Couple Should Have” on Yahoo and it made me reflect on my own relationship. 1 year 8 months. That is how long I’ve been in my first serious, adult relationship. No we aren’t engaged, married, have kids, or share finances.  However, we do spend A LOT of time together.  And what usually happens when a couple spends a lot of time together? They either grow closer or further apart. 

I would be lying if I said my relationship was perfect. Arguments have strengthened our bond because:

  1. It helped establish respect. 
  2. When there is listening and talking involved – it helped us see both sides to the argument and appreciate each other.
  3. Speaking for myself – it has helped me pinpoint what I SHOULDN’T do, like hold onto things.

There are more ways arguments have benefited my relationship but those are the creme de la creme.

As far as advice goes: If fights are unavoidable, why not make them as productive as possible?” – Dr. Gilda Carle. My big pet peeve with fights is CONSTANTLY fighting over the SAME issue! It annoys me even more when I am at fault! Ideally, fights should end with a resolution, an agreement, a compromise. There should be some progress made. After all, who wants to be in a regressive relationship?

Closing thoughts: Fights are good as long as there is growth involved because: no couple is perfect, no one person is perfect, everyone makes mistakes (keep in mind: you can only forgive a person so many times before they start taking advantage), and ultimately, if you love your partner and you both are making an effort, don’t stop ’til it’s over!


Ochocinco – “I Messed Up”. Second Chances After Domestic Violence?

Being the girlfriend of a football player, I am exposed to ESPN on a daily basis. Sometimes I watch, most times I don’t. This past Wednesday, I was definitely watching.


Do you guys know Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson? Of course you do. You: know him via football, saw him on Basketball Wives or Dancing with the Stars (2010), drooled over him in Ochocinco: The Ultimate Catch, or follow him on Twitter…or all of the above.

Anyway, Johnson married reality star, Evelyn Lozada on July 4, 2o12. The two dated on Basketball Wives (which starred Lozada) and many were skeptical of their relationship, making bets on how long it would last.

1.) Romances played out on reality shows rarely work out (See: Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey, Britney Spears and Kevin Federline, Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries, etc.)*

2.) Johnson didn’t have the best reputation with women at the time – being so friendly and all.

A little over a month after marriage, Johnson headbutted Lozada following an argument about the receipt for a box of condoms she found in their car. As a result: Johnson was charged with misdemeanor domestic battery, VH1 cancelled the premiere of their reality show Ev and Ocho and Johnson was dropped from the Miami Dolphins.


Fast-forward to December 5th, 2012. Johnson was featured on the ESPN’s First Take (for a more detailed interview – Video 1 and Video 2) debate with the dramatic duo, Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith (who I’m convinced is related to Ludacris). Johnson delivered this message to NFL Teams after stating that he has “no regrets about the way [he] played the game and creating revenue to feed [his] kids.” According to him, “this is the  NFL, there are always second chances”.

Johnson repeatedly stated how apologetic he is about the domestic abuse situation with his wife (who’s face is tatted on his right leg – view picture below). He has also said numerous times that he wants Evelyn to come back to him.


This First Take interview, stirred up thoughts about taking back someone who physically (and emotionally) hurt you. Some say it’s important to stop the cycle once it starts. Others would say you have to be in that situation to decide how you’d act.

No, I haven’t been in an abusive relationship and I agree with the former. In my head, to abuse me is like saying “I’m above you”. Hierarchy doesn’t work well in relationships…at least not in the United States.  In addition, respect is due to both people in a relationship. Once the respect is gone, so is the trust, comfort, happiness, etc., everything that is necessary to the maintenance and growth of a relationship.

But then I think of the recently united Rihanna and Chris Brown. Their current relationship is like one big, public lab experiment. Will he do it again? Has he really changed? Time will tell. Love is a powerful force, for sure.

In the mean time, I’m sure Johnson has more ploys up his sleeves to try to get Lozada back. Let’s see how this plays out.

Source: Vibe

* Although I agree that reality tv isn’t the best for relationships, people get together and break apart every day. Reality shows is not the primary reason for failed relationships, it’s an added stressor.


The Results: People Will Test Boundaries Going Out of Their Way For Love


To get caught up on where this post is coming from, read this.

I asked 100+ people located in NYC, outside of NYC and other states, “How far would you travel for romance?”

Disappointingly, only 19 people* responded to this survey. However, I was more disappointed in my administering of the poll (still learning!). Thank you to those who participated!

Here are the results:

42% said it doesn’t matter; where love is I’ll be there

42% said they’d would go out of state

11% said they’d travel internationally

5% would travel across country

0% would only stay in their neighborhood/town for love 

I am happy to report that these results suggest people are willing to travel outside of their comfort zone to be with their boo than stay within “their boundaries”.

P.S. After working at the Marist Poll and taking public relations classes, I do know that for polls to be concrete 1000+ people must provide their opinions. In addition, the results could be broken down into categories depending on age, sex, income, location, etc. This was just a fun test and maybe I’ll consider conducting it again in the future. 🙂

*Two more people voted after this post was published however that did not alter the results.

Source: Rebloggy

Dating Outside of Your Comfort Zone – Literally

I recently read an article by Jozen Cummings in the NY Post titled, “What’s your limit: City limits?”. He talked about a couple who only saw each others on Saturdays due to their conflicting work schedules. One lives in the Bronx and the other in Queens. In addition, in response to the survey question, “How far are you willing to travel for romance?” about 37% of 87 participants (in NYC) have no problem with traveling throughout NYC for love. About 29% said they’d go anywhere for love while roughly 21% don’t travel outside their borough for love. (Click on the link, then on “view results” to see the entire poll.)

I don’t know about you, but when I think of long distance, out of state comes to mind. Maybe even across the country! Cummings polled only NYC residents. Let’s see if the results vary when participants from other states chime in. Same question, slightly different options: