Ask Toi: How do you deal with someone who Deflects all the time?

Consistency and straightforwardness.  There is no other way.  You will have to find a way not to be like the person you are dealing with.  Be clear and concise.  Say what you mean and mean what you say.  People who deflect are often not the type of person who opens up to faults.  It’s always someone else’s fault.  For example, the friend that complains that the utility company is always giving them a hard time but doesn’t ever want to admit that they make a thousand payment arrangements that they may not honor, or just simply doesn’t have a good payment history to begin with.

If you are in a romantic relationship this can be hard.  You address a situation with them. They make a billion excuses and you are left frustrated.  Look at the level of relationship. Are you dating?  Maybe this is a deal breaker for you.  You try to work with it unless its continual dishonesty and then you decide that this person doesn’t meet your standard.  Is it in a marriage?  Try finding ways to approach them. If none of these thing work, get a 3rd party to help.  If you, and the 3rd party can’t get them to see the error of their ways, you may want to consider some soul-searching.  It’s 2018 and I am not for breaking up families at all.  Let me say that for the folks in the back, breaking up families is not the will.  However what else isn’t the will is doing the work for two people.  This is not how relationships are supposed to work romantic or not.  So be wiser this year, work on you.  Be clear when you deal with a deflector and attempt to make some things work.  However if you know without a shadow of a doubt that you have exhausted ALL of your means, find ways to either let nature do its thing with the relationship or hit it on the head and roll.

What do I mean about nature taking its course?

If it is a friend that is always deflecting you might find that you spend less time with them. They will begin to wonder what is going on.  Have a talk and say I brought up a few issues and you dismissed them with your actions. Be clear in how they were dismissive and let them know that this is unacceptable.  If it is someone you are romantic with, if they aren’t self indulged they may notice that things aren’t what they once was.  Bring that up and remind them how their actions continue to be dismissive.  Have a plan if its someone you are romantically with.  Sometimes we sit around knowing that things should end but because we don’t want to hurt their feelings, we wait and pray and hope they will end it. Put your big girl/boy drawls on and face the music.  If is marriage you can’t be in a one-sided marriage.  I know a lot of miserable people who are in these marriages and literally cry or sad all the time.  This can’t be at this point. It’s one thing to say someone else is doing ABC, but it’s another to stay rooted just for the sake of saying you didn’t give up.  You not giving up should be in your actions.  Working all the time to be the change you want to see. Making sure you meet your partner full way to what they need and if you can say yes I have done that but…. you haven’t done all you can.  Let’s knock this I do for them but they….. If there is a they you have to own that something you have allowed may be the cause for the set up in how they treat you.  Did you let a few things slide?  Has things always been a certain way, and now you are growing and changing? There is nothing wrong with growth and change at ALL. You will need to bring up the change to your partner and if they love you they will do their work to be a better version of themselves to you.  No need for dead weight in 2018!  Don’t be the weight to your partner but don’t take deflecting excuses this year either.

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Gabrielle Union’s We’re Going to Need More Wine

I am still reading this but have you ever had a moment of pause? I just had mine today. I am almost done with the book and I had to take a pause. There are a thousand and one things in this book that made me jump, cry, or just sit and pause but today’s pause I have to share.

In her chapter, “On mean women and good dogs, Gabrielle describes a boxing session she had with her trainer and life coach.  The coach asked her what 10 things made her happy.  She couldn’t think of 10 things.  The coach reminded her if she couldn’t find 10 things to make her happy what made her so sure she should have gotten married. Pause. This was my pause. I have been in this dark place.  I cried thinking of how I cried in marriage counseling with my husband snotting and having an entire fit over what he was doing, what he wasn’t doing, and why I was ready to leave him. Pause.  I was ready to leave my college sweetheart for a few reasons.  One we have an extremely long and interesting history.  It spans over 10 years almost 20 to be exact off  and on.  This alone was not a recipe to be married.  Two, I got married because I loved him but I also loved what I thought he was when we were together in college.  Pause.  This is not marital love.  This is not one of those things that you rush down the aisle for. I was miserable in my own skin.  I loved my husband, I knew we had been through HELL and back but I didn’t know who I was.  I was a 30/31-year-old women who had put all of my eggs in one basket and with this basket he was supposed to come in and do all the work.  He was supposed to make me smile with gifts. He was supposed to initiate sex while I went with the flow. He was supposed to be my happiness.  How did that work out? Not good if you can imagine. He did it for a while. He opened my life even when we met in college to the finest of things. If things was what I wanted, he got it. His love language is gifts.  He did it well. I can’t even remember what I could have wanted that he wouldn’t have worked his entire behind to get me.  However after the gifts, what did I have to give. Not a damn thing. He was supposed to do the work while I sat pretty.  I was more like pretty damn miserable and it was causing a wedge in our marriage and relationship.

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Ladies this is not how marriage starts off.  This is how marriage will end.  Had I not taken a chance to go to martial counseling the divorce would have been finalized.  Ladies, had I not gone to counseling on my own after that, I would be a miserable rut. NO man or woman is your source.  Let me repeat that for the folks way, way in the back-they are not your source.   You have to come with more than some thighs or checking account to make things work.  You have to be able to be whole before you can unite.  We had done it backwards or at least I did. I take full responsiblity for my part. I came in looking for a dream.  College sweethearts unite, marry and build a family. It sounded cliché and enough until it wasn’t.  Gabrielle is spilling the tea that every woman and man better get with as your progress through life. If Gabrielle or you or me can’t find things that make you happy, that gives you purpose how in God’s green Earth are you to survive?

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Take a point in this book and the tea I am spilling on what I did or didn’t do to get secure.  So many women and men want marriage but have done zero work on themselves.  You haven’t pulled one credit report to fix your own junk.  You realize that when you get married they marry that junk.  You can’t just let it pile up and hope it goes away because it won’t.  You work a job instead of finding a career.  You have never been out of the country or traveled with friends or even by yourself but you’re ready for marriage or just life.  Remember not everyone wants to be married. Marriage is not the end all.  So to my married friends stop selling these fast dreams.  You walk around with your piece of rock and feel and act as if you have made it.  You are the main ones like me (I was) out here stunting on your single friends like you got some badge of honor.  Your husband ain’t seen a genuine smile out of you in years.  You are miserable and you making his life just as miserable. Just stop.  Your husband or wife ain’t seen the real you since Jesus was a baby.  You hide with the lights off and you fake like everything is everything-just stop!

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Get clear.  Self love is important. You should be able to name more than 10 things that make you happy.  These are not to be thought of things that make you temporary smile.  I mean 10 genuine things that make you happy.  The things that makes you smile about yourself.  If you can’t say that, work on that before you connect with another person. Do that while you are with another person. I had to be real with myself during the months it took.  I was frustrated with the fact that I had to go to counseling but I was serious that even if he and I went our separate ways, at least I could walk out whole and happy even if that meant I had to revert to my maiden name.  Ladies and gentleman the time for this soul-searching is ever-present.  Get there and get clear.  To say it lightly, I need a glass of wine just bringing up these old emotions. Well played Gabrielle, well-played.

Never Forgotten; Year One….

Well as many of my readers and followers know a year ago today, my mother in law transitioned from Earth.  It was such an experience.  This blog is dedicated to the memory of Deborah Ann Wilson-Storr.  We have lost a piece of her and we are trying our best to hold it together. This year has had so many ups and downs.  These are the things that I have personally noticed:

  1. Time right now hasn’t healed our hearts. My kids are still visibly moved by my mother in law’s passing.  My oldest will go to the gravesite but will not get close.  My son is still missing her and asking for her, but then will remember that she’s not here. My youngest was only 2 when she passed away but will say things like momma said….. Trust me it’s really spooky and the things that she says really sounded of things she would have said.  We were super worried that she was the one who didn’t have a close relationship because she was so young.
  2. Holidays and birthdays aren’t the same.  I try to still keep in line with what we would have done if she was here, but you can feel it.  I can’t think of a holiday where we as a family haven’t talked about her and what her presence not being here has meant.  She died right around Halloween and before Thanksgiving and Christmas.  It’s been hard.
  3. I notice that I didn’t cry as much as I did when she first passed but now I do more and its overwhelming.  I never thought what life would be like without her here. I always thought she would be a part of whatever we were doing and not having her here has been unbearable at moments.
  4. I include her memory in everything. I do not want my kids to loss her memory.
  5. My youngest still inter changes my mom and my mother in law’s name.  They call my mom Hanmom and her Mom-Mom and she will ask to go to mom-mom’s house but she really means my mom.  It’s not just a little slip up, we correct her and she is convinced. She has been asking to go to my mom’s house more lately.  It’s hard to know what a 3rd year old means all the time.
  6. Her passing has made me think of my own parents, and the relationship with my kids.  They are now the main grandparent here on Earth. I want them to be closer. However on grandparents day because of distance we had were honored to ask my mother in law’s best friend to stand in but I remember my son being upset and stating how unfair it was his grandparents weren’t there.
  7. As a mother I want to be sure that my words towards my kids are better.  I do not want any words between me and them to be in left field that when I am no longer here, they don’t have to heal from anything negative.  Her death makes me want to be as honest, right, and more loving to my own children.
  8. Lastly anger.  It has been weird and I try not to bother my husband about it, but I have felt angry at times. Like why there wasn’t more that could be done to keep her here with us a little longer.
  9. Not to take life for granted. I remember my mother in law had this list of these great things she wanted to do like take a trip to the Bahamas, buy a new car, or take her grandkids to Disney and sadly those things never happened. I remember when she was in the hospital and telling me what she was going to do, I told her that I would hold her to it.  Now she can’t and I will forever use that energy to do all of the things I possibly can. I don’t want to wait until later, etc.  I want to be sure that I live my best life daily.  So now I move differently in how I honor myself.  In this, will honor her and be a great testament to my kids at the same time.

Like I have said our interactions between my mother in law had intense moments like any other daughter in law and mother in law could have.  However it was always my desire to be closer to her.  What I enjoyed about her was her ability to handle her money and save.  She has taught me that. I know for a fact that I am a better shopper, a better woman of my finances as well as better at ruling my home because of her.

She taught me how to love my husband. My husband is an only child.  You can imagine above all else of what I have learned, how I may be mending, or how our children are doing is his emptiness.  She showed me how to love unconditionally. I always thought that was something that was so natural but it’s not.  She showed me how to handle people mistreating you, talking about you and still being yourself.  EVERYONE knows how it is to be in “Debbie’s world.”  She never wavered in who she was, how she felt, who she like, or who she didn’t like.  She was her, and she didn’t try to change.  She showed me how to love through people.

Whenever I hear my youngest talk, I say okay little Debbie.  She looks like her too.  My 3-year-old is the most sassy but not disrespectful child I have ever encountered.  She reminds me of my mother in law and I just look at her with a side eye at times just like I would my mother in law if she was here.

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One thing I would say with anyone who has a in law, to speak up for yourself and not be disrespectful.  I know that at times I came off as disrespectful and I have always admitted that there were things that I could have done like leave etc.  However I can say with 100% certainty is that I was in her full corner when it came to making sure she had the BEST care possible.  It was after I moved from her home that our relationship got back on track.  Also at the end of the day there isn’t anything that was done that I felt like I feel guilty about now that she is gone.  That comes from working things out and learning how to work it out.  I am not saying things were perfect at all, but we left things on the track it should have been on way before she passed.  Also keep in mind that regardless of what is done you can be cordial to an in law.  This is a respectful hello and good-bye especially if children are involved.    Do you know how hard it is to explain to a child while you were “being mean” to that grandparent?  Kids watch what you do regardless of what you say. However even in kidless marriages, it will still matter in how you interact.  You can put distance where it’s needed, I am for that. I did the same for a while too, but when you come back, try.  Always find a try within you.  How you handle those around you matters.  Also keep in mind, that just because you don’t like your in-law, they are the root of your significant other.  The love relationship they have regardless of how many times they complain to you is always going to be there. When that in-law transitions they will resent you if you have treated them any less.  They will not care what was done on the opposite end because the in law won’t be there to speak for themselves.  So be truly careful in how you talk, act, and handle this very delicate relationship. I am telling you it WILL matter.

Deborah, I know you are watching over us, making sure we give your grandbabies anything they ask.  I know you know we will not but you would want us to.  You would want us to give them as many kisses for you. I try daily to do just that and more.  The way you loved those 3 grandkids of yours was nothing more than I could have given and I am their mother. I pray that as we continue in this life, that your memory will burn bright everyday. I pray you are honored in how we move and live daily.  Until you can give me another side eye, I love you!!

Self Care/Self Improvement

September is a lot of things.  I don’t know what it is about September but its a jammed pack month.  However this month is self-care and self-improvement month.  So if you follow this blog, and on any social media feed I am always pushing self care.  I think it’s becoming a thing or a term that is thrown out a lot but not a lot of people understand what that means.  Although it can mean different things to the person who is using it, the bottom line is you have to care and love yourself enough to engage in what YOU need or disengage in the things YOU don’t want to be involved in.

The opportune word is YOU.  That is essentially what self-care is all about.  Only you can determine what you need or what you don’t need.  For instance I can go to an event and if I am ready to go I position myself to know what type of environment I am going to be in to know if I should drive myself or not even for family events.  I try to in the instance of family events to stay as long as possible especially since my husband attends my side of events without issue and I do the same for his side of his family events.  However depending on what the event is he and I have it set that if one of us is not wanting to stay longer to communicate and make an exit.  If the individual wants to stay than its fine too but we make sure that no one person can put pressure to stay longer than mentally capable.  Sometimes walking away, leaving, or excusing yourself is self care.  I literally refuse to stay in a place I do not want to be in.  I used to feel guilty however I have learned to do whats best for me.  Self care may be not attending an event.  I can’t tell you how many times I have not gone to something because I may have needed to relax or do my own thing.  I may have needed not to be in an environment that is toxic.  I happily will decline an invitation at this point.  If asked I will say sorry but not sorry I can’t attend.  A part of self care especially for me is realizing I am an adult I don’t owe individuals an explanation.  If someone sends an invite its my decision to politely decline.

Another part of self-care is knowing when enough is enough.  I had someone contact me. I didn’t even respond.  I knew I may have responded wrong or come off as if whatever was done in the past was an issue when reality is the person didn’t add or take away from my life.  However silence is always golden and I didn’t even need to engage so I didn’t.  It doesn’t have to make sense but it was to continue in my peace.  Anything that will have you mentally up in arms I don’t engage in.  Anything where I would give more than 15 minutes to hash out is probably not for me.  That’s why I am clear and don’t go back and forth with adults.  There is no need to.  That is a right that I have earned from stepping into adulthood.  I can’t think of a reason for back and forth at this point in my life.  I can agree to disagree and still go home and love on the ones I interact with daily.  I can even disagree with the ones in my home without messing up the atmosphere of my home.

Self care may look like disconnecting.  I am a lover of social media but I take small breaks away from it.  Yes its great for pushing my blog, interacting with family, but sometimes it can be doing the most so I disconnect.  I had a situation where I was arguing with a family member that I would have argued with offline but the point was, online for what?  That one was on me.  I was offended, but so what offenses will come. The world didn’t need to know that I was mad.  I could have handled that better so I take ownership of it and will not allow it to happen again.  I simply state what I feel and if someone comments, oh well.  There are probably screenshots of that very conversation floating around and for what?  So sometimes I don’t delete my social media that’s just crazy.   I am in control.  I never understood why adults can’t simply just not get on an app but that could be a part of their self-care so it is what it is. It’s no different from deleting or blocking.  I could just not engage but for me blocking works.  For me its simple my rule is simple I don’t socially block who I wouldn’t block in real life.  I check my block lists every now and again and if I sit and engage with you than no need to block you.  If I don’t and don’t plan on breaking bread with you, and I block your access to my real life, you can stay blocked on social media.  I don’t need a door opened where I wouldn’t give you access to me otherwise.  So no you don’t need to know about what me and my kids do when I don’t even reach out to you, talk to you, text you, email you, etc and don’t want to.  Its simple.  My life is simple these days because of the steps I take to keep it that way. Do you know the quietness but fullness of life I still have?  Trust.

Self care and self-improvement by far is the biggest goal in life outside of raising healthy children and having a good marriage between my husband and I.  It’s self-care daily practices that I use ALL the time.  I buy myself weekly flowers, I love them and they make me happy.  I journal daily because it keeps me grounded.  I work out 2-3 days a week because I am maintaining a healthy lifestyle and it keeps stress down.  I will go to bed and be okay with my husband putting the kids to sleep because I don’t have to do it all.  I can take a mental time out because that is what is necessary for me.  I can make sure that I am engaging in the little things that make me strong and healthy.  Please find that out for yourself and instead of engaging in bad behavior. Find and engage in what is going to make you a better person.  Also remember it may not make sense to a single soul, but if it makes sense to you, is keeping you grounded, positive, and hurts no one else than do it.

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For self-improvement we all can improve on ourselves, daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly.  Everyday you should be striving to be better than your last.  With that in mind I don’t really ever feel like I have fully accomplished my goals.  I may complete some of them but there’s always another goal right in its place.  Even in relationships I know there will come a time where the relationships that need mended will mend.  The ones that don’t won’t. Everything is up to be changed and I am more than willing to walk in that change.  You have to do the same for what your life needs.

So again as this month is supposed to encourage you to be about self care and self improvement.

T.I.-Marriage is a distraction

I love T.I. but my love for him will never cloud my judgement on whether or not I think the words coming out of his mouth is right or not.  His marriage has been under fire for many years.  Recently it has come under fire when his estranged wife “Tiny” Tameka Harris filed for divorce.

I try not to believe everything in the tabloids.  For instance the reported infidelity on both sides no one really knows for sure but Tiny and TI.  However one thing that has been circulating is TI’s most recent interview where he states how he can be a better best friend to Tiny but not a good husband to her.  Now let’s explore this statement since I am a married woman if I heard that I was a distraction after giving my husband the best of me, having children and building a life regardless of what was going on I would be devastated.  I feel for Tiny in that aspect.

Should he stay just to save face?

However I wouldn’t have an issue with TI feeling and expressing the way he feels if he had this conversation with her privately and before the alleged affairs that took place. We tend to take the honestly out of marriage out. If your husband can’t come to you and be transparent even if it hurts that is an issue.  I know for my husband and I struggle in this area to be 100% vulnerable because we still feel the need to hold a person’s feelings when you discuss difficult situations.  It doesn’t mean someone is withholding information it just means that some things are difficult and may take time to bring to one another’s attention.

If TI feels that he can be a better friend over a husband as hard as those words are to hear, it’s better to have the words said than to prolong the inevitable.  However I do believe that tact should always be considered.  The timing on something like that is everything.  This means to Tiny that even if she thought they could reconcile things, he is not in the place to do so.  He no longer wants to do the things that husbands do.  She has to get pass that type of gut wrenching hurt. She could be doing that in her own way.  I think she is still struggling.  If my husband and I had that conversation and I saw him or thought he was entertaining someone I know for a full fact I would be okay to see that or have it thrown in my face all the time.  It would take some time to heal that the marriage was over.  Have my husband had some extremely hurtful things that hit and cut like that?  Absolutely if I am honest.

We tend to romanticize marriage.  We tend to think everything will just work out.  It doesn’t.  I do not like the ideal of divorce.  I didn’t marry to divorce but it happens.  You have to understand that going into it.  No you don’t look for it to happen but understand when it comes to the matters of the heart and will, things will never remain if the person you are working with stops working with you.  TI shouldn’t just stick it out for the sake of the kids, to make Tiny happy, or to prevent from divorcing altogether.  Somebody has to realize that a broken toy doesn’t always get fixed.  Women are lining their opinions on the matter and some not understanding what its like to be married.  Some are on team Tiny and reality is there is no need for Team anybody.  The team members that matter the most, one party doesn’t want to be married.  It sucks, it hurts, but I am sure like most strong women she is shattered but her pieces can be put back together.

I can’t imagine what it feels to be in Tiny’s shoes.  She can’t even grief the marriage because she is in the public eye.  I am sure that Tiny and TI have had good moments.  I am sure they keep things together for the children.  I am sure that they are trying to work on things to get them to the point where they can be cordial.  I am also sure that is not without pain and not without hurt.  Tiny has been there for TI even during the time of his incarceration.  He I am sure has been there during difficult times as well.  They lost a child together, they have been through Hell and back.  People think that in marriage you won’t change but marriage changes people.  Some for the better and some it can go left.  I know couples who take years to get to this point still holding on to what was. Loyalty is pricey.  This is why its hard for people to give it to just anyone.  They know that you put yourself out there and the return on investment can be everything or nothing at all. Marriage is work but it takes both partners willing to make it work for it to work.  I wish them both well.

What your Married Friends Won’t Tell You

So I am going to a wedding today.  I know without a doubt this union is just going to be a beautiful celebration of two people who really do love each other and who are both committed to being there for one another.  Going to weddings when you are married is supposed to remind you of your own vows.  You get that rush of feeling when you think of the nervousness of both individuals and you remember how you felt doing the same thing.  Marriage is a lifetime committment and that committment can be easy-going but filled with the ups and downs of life.  So here are a few things that married people don’t share but its true.

  1. You will get on each others nerves-I know in the fairy tales the man and woman marry and then they live happily ever after but in planet Reality, it’s not true all the time.  Your mate will get on your last nerve and then resurrect that nerve and get on it again and again and again.  Yes and some more.  This is the closest person to you and they know all of your ups and downs as well as your triggers.  Love is forever but staying in that forever moment take works.
  2. You will not be in a blissful state of euphoria every minute of your marriage.  Cue in the flowers, lingerie, and happy smiles marriage is work.  I think I said that before but marriage is work.  You will have to be intentional in creating happy spaces of your marriage.  You will also need to be prepared for the down times as well as make sure you are already on a stable foundation.
  3. Your first few years are the hardest.  You may find that your temperament will change as you ride the waves of this new life.  You may argue for the first time since you called your little baby boo, teddy bear, love muffin yours.  This will pass.  If you notice that you are having more trouble than most than seek counseling.  But know its normal to disagree.  Don’t stress and if you can’t find a solution than let an argument settle and come back to it.  Take a time out.  It’s okay. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither do all arguments.
  4. Sometimes you will crave your own space.  You got married to be one, but you don’t have to be joined at the hip.  However there will be time when life pushes you more and more together and if you aren’t careful can push you away from your own dreams.  You have a help mate which means someone to help you along the journey of life but not to be your life.  Make time to love on each other and still have to cultivate your own passions.
  5. Life changes.  This has to be said.  Marriage is not just a piece of paper.  It binds you in spirit and love.  That changes the game altogether.  You are no longer on an island you are responsible for each other and the family and life you have.  Going with the flow isn’t easy for everyone that is why the person you pick to spend your life with is super important.  You want to be sure that the person is willing to take care of you if you lost all of your limbs, lost your mind, or got severely sick.  Why pick a person who will run at the slightest sign of danger.  You are wasting the time you could be with the one who really wants to be just be there.  They should want to be there just because they love you and love doing for you and with you.
  6. Sex is important.  I know you hear stories of wives who only have sex 3 times a year: birthday, Christmas, and anniversaries.  Although it’s not my place to say how often a couple should be having it, if you ask the couple separately there will always be one that wants it more and the other who wants it less.  Whether you believe in sex before marriage or not, talking about sex and the expectations should be discussed before hand.  Why be married to the one person who is to fulfill your needs and find out that they aren’t going to or have no intention of doing so.  This is crushing, especially in lines of honoring your vows.  If you are to honor your vows and that means not sleeping around than you should be able to be sexually free with your mate.  This takes time and being on the same page outside of the bedroom.  Also be realistic.  Once babies, sickness or anything else life swings your way will change-up the rhythm.  It takes two to tango.  If you hear from a married friend that something is wrong in the timing of sex in their lives, always remember there are always two sides and in the middle is always a big misunderstanding. Communication and the lack thereof is always the culprit.
  7. Communication is a big issue in marriage and it can make or break the relationship.  Money is tied or sometimes seen as number one but communication is the culprit before money.  If you can’t communicate and if you struggle like I do at times than you must have someone willing to help you close that gap or is patient. You have to be able to open up.  Men you will definitely know you are marrying or have married the right one when you don’t want to communicate but its something about the lady in your life that pushes you past your comfort level of opening up. How you say what you say is actually more important than the words you say. Saying hey you lost yourself and you look horrible is way off track than saying hey what is going on and how can I help you get back to your happy place.  See the difference. I tell my husband all the time you can the same thing and use tact and tact will get you everything with me.  Its super true.  I love that man and if he comes correct 99% he can get whatever he needs within reason.
  8. Money is something to be on top of. I don’t like money talks. I hate them to be honest.  I always feel like I am being talked to like a child when it comes to money.  I am the type that is like just tell me what I need to contribute to and move on but it doesn’t always work that way.  You can’t be afraid to know where you stand. I encourage every woman who is reading this blog if you are in a marriage to know the ends and outs of what is coming in and what is coming out. You should have copies of every important financial document and know the status everything concerning you and your households.  Do you know how many women just because they are stay at home moms or aren’t working that don’t know this information.  If something happens to that man you can’t write a check, drive, or even know if you can bury that man-nothing. Change that.  You need to be partners in life which means that you must be partners who have full rights.  Every partner should have all the cards facing up.
  9. Happy wife, happy life is a lie and a truth at the same time.  Happy wife starts with a happy wife than you can do things to make her happy after her happiness is fulfilled.  Let me share a little confession, I am not that happy wife all the time.  This takes practice. I would encourage all soon to be wives and those wanting to be wives to do some work on yourself before you join yourself to someone.  It takes a lot of out of the marriage to constantly try to make a miserable person happy.  You can kill a person trying to do the most.  Once you have a happy wife than men its up to you to make sure you keep her love bucket full and vice versa the same applies to the ladies.  Love on yourself and never forget the reason why you got married is the key to keeping you as an individual happy therefore making a happy marriage.
  10. Marriage isn’t for everyone.  I know we know about the divorce rates but that isn’t supposed to scare you.  Marriage is what you and your mate put into it.  What people don’t tell you is to never judge your marriage off of what others around you do.  What makes one marriage work never applies to all marriages.  So be careful comparing and water your own garden.

Ask Toi: My husband cheated and now wants to go to counseling after months of asking. I don’t want to go now because I feel like it’s after the point. I also don’t want to sit and hear about how sorry he is now when I don’t believe him….

Well first of all let me say how sorry I am that you have been put in this situation.  First of all let me acknowledge that how you feel is real and honest.  I am quite sure that was your rated G version that you expressed.  Cheating is horrible.  It hurt.  It cuts.  The wound that cheating brings is not easily fixable.  My thing is for you is not just not simply not go. I would go ONLY if you really want to.  You may not want to hear the sordid details of what happened.  That may be just how you feel now.  Cheating can and will give you so many emotions at one time and then those emotions will be ever-changing.

I would go just to see what he wants to put on the table.  Him not going before now and now wanting to go means that he believes this will save your marriage.  If you have a good counselor they will let you both know that simply showing up for the sessions will not fix your marriage.  Counseling doesn’t erase pain.  It actually takes the band-aid of your relationship off and makes you look at it.  You can after you do that decide that cheating is a deal breaker.  You may decide that you don’t want your husband back.  Cheating changes the person who does it but also the one holding the emotional bags afterwards.  That’s why usually the one who cheated wants you to hurry up and process this and move on.  It’s easier to say you want to be done with it after you create it.  I will tell you one thing if you can’t get over it and after time has gone by and you still feel the need to bring it up due to real unforgiveness you have to do what you have to do.  We tell women to forgive.  We tell them that they should deal but reality is that NO ONE deserves to be cheated on.  To men it’s simply an act, to women it’s an act of betrayal.  There are relationships that claim they forgive but bring it up all the time because they think they are in the right to do so because they are hurt.  You can forgive and love still and still want to be out of that type of disrespectful relationship.

I can’t say I know his why.  He knows his why and maybe he finds a way to communicate that to you.  I would say what you feel is real.  It’s like having to watch him pour out his heart NOW but didn’t want to do a lot of communicating that could have saved this pain from your life before it began.  It feels as if you are being punished.  Relationships are hard but the one thing you did when you say you are marrying another person is to find a way to be an adult and communicate and if you can’t stay married for the right reasons, speak up to those sentiments.  One thing I can tell you is that counseling can help you heal even if that means healing together is not going to take place.  I pray for your healing.  I pray that you and your husband can get to a better place together even if you don’t end up together. This journey is yours as much as it is his.  Feel what you need to, this too is a part of the process.  NO one can tell you how to go through this.  You will feel alone, angry, hurt, sad, and sometimes at the same time.  You may not even be able to tell those that are closest to you how you feel or what is going on.  Be careful in who you confide in.  Remember that those who you speak to will push you one way or the other.  You hold your own spirit.  It doesn’t matter what others think, you ALONE have to stay in this or leave.  No one will be there to get you through the way you are going to want them to be.  Friends say they will be there but have their own lives.  Do not make a decision based upon what your friends say they would do because when they get it in they have no idea how they will really respond.  Love on yourself.  Regardless of what took place, his cheating was HIS doing.  He alone is wrong and you don’t have to take on HIS cheating as your own. He is grown and made a choice.  This didn’t happen by accident.  He is wrong.