Episode # 19: 10 Things You’re Probably Doing in Your Relationships that Make Them Worst

Welcome to the black Marriage and Family Therapy matters podcast where we connect black families to black therapist. On Mondays, you will receive direct therapeutic support from a licensed therapist or professional connected to the mental health field. They will provide therapeutic and educational resources to help you have a healthier relationship with your family members. On Wednesdays, you will receive direct tips and resources to help you get through the stuck places that prevent many people from having relationships with their families and significant others that they desire. On Fridays, we want you to visit our blog which can be found at WWW dot black MFT matters.com which holds additional resources and action steps that you can begin implementing immediately to improve your relationships. This is necessary because we love that you are listening. But we want you to take action to while you are there. Please grab our A to Z relationship bootcamp and be provided with the skills you need to immediately communicate better within your relationships. Please note that while the therapists on podcasts are therapists, they do not serve as your therapist unless you have signed a confidential agreement with them confirming that relationship. Thank you in advance for listening. And we hope you are inspired. All right. It’s time for the show. Here is your host, Dr. Connie Omari.

Dr. Connie Omari
Hello, hello, hello and welcome. As you all know I am Dr. O, and I am coming to you with some things we can do to make our relationships better.

Today, I am talking to the women. All right, who are following me most of them are women anyway. But I’m talking to the women who are either in relationships are having conflict in their relationships are looking to get into relationships and don’t quite know the best way to go about doing it the best way to interact.

I think this information that I have to share today is going to be extremely helpful. So women who are looking into getting into relationships, I’m going to give you 10 Things you’re probably doing in your relationships that make them worse. Okay.

The number one is not having your own life. All right, so let’s just really think about what it means to be a woman. Whether you’re black, white, purple, yellow, whatever. We are caregivers. From very early ages, we are taught by ways of one of the main things kids want little girls want for Christmas is going to be a doll, especially like a Barbie doll. In my age, it was a Cabbage Patch Doll. Today they have like the LOL dolls, but whatever it is, are the cry, but the Baby Alive dolls are my daughter has a cry baby, all of these dolls in our teaching us how to socialize, how to interact with the world and basically what it means to be female. Okay. And that often means caregiving, and taking care of others. And what do we do with these dolls, we change them, we bathe them, we clothe him, we do their hair we are taking we are grooming our girls from a very early age, to socialize and connect with others. But in relationships, all those things are important too. Except when they’re not when they’re not valued. When they’re not appreciated when they’re not wanted.

We often don’t know what we want. And that can be very, very toxic and overwhelming for a man who wants his face and wants his freedom and has his own hobbies and has his own idea of what is important, like when we are pulling out then. Because we don’t have our own life. And we don’t know ourselves and we don’t know what we want. We have to recognize that that’s not their issue. It’s ours, and we need to work on it because it’s annoying.

Alright, number two is nagging. What I didn’t tell you all before I started is that a lot of these things are things that I struggle with as well because I will love it. So a lot of it is you know, just basically kind of how we interact and what we do. And my husband who edits this stuff is going to love hearing me have to pretty much eat crow and admit that I do things as well, that I know are complicated. But that’s what makes me human. And that’s what I think makes me relatable. And helps me to connect more with the people who I know need this stuff. So yeah, nagging, nagging. Listen, it is a annoying, like, you can’t make anybody do anything that they don’t want to do. And so, you know, if for whatever reason, it’s funny, because I tell my husband, well, I wouldn’t keep asking you to take out the trash if you would just do it. But the point is, he heard me the first time, you know, I don’t need to ask him seven more times, he either is or he isn’t.

And he’s going to do that when he gets ready. And sometimes, you know, nagging him about it even makes him more resistant, because it could remind him of his mother, which I’m not, I’m his wife. But it is just really annoying. Like, he might have his own reasons for why he hasn’t taken up the trash, maybe he wants to wait until it’s full. Maybe he wants to wait until the game is over. Maybe he wants to wait until he is not full and sleepy and tired. But when he has more energy, whatever, whatever reason, though, he’s made the decision not to take out the trash and me nagging him becomes more of a nuisance, then it does an effective way to get what I need done. So ladies, nobody likes a neck. So let’s try to get a handle on that.

Number three, and this is a lot of the reasons we’ve touched on so far, is dumping your insecurities on him. And so it’s really funny, but I’ll go ahead and give an example of when I’ve done that, speaking of my husband, I remember a time when he explained to me, or was just pointing out pretty much an era in in me, I believe I had something on my neck or on my back or something like that. And he was bringing my attention to it. And what I heard was, You’re ugly, or I don’t you know, your skin is imperfect or whatever. And the Raven, I responded, even as I was doing it, I was recognizing it was completely irrational. But you know, I found myself kind of in that situation and didn’t really know how to get out. And we actually had a relatively big argument about it. And it just really was not, it really wasn’t not appropriate.

And it had more to do with me feeling self conscious about my skin, me feeling self conscious about my hair, it has more to do with that than it did him intentionally trying to criticize me. And it’s funny, because, you know, when I was done, because, you know, when I go on these little episodes, sometimes he just looks at me like a deer caught in the headlights. And he was just like, I was just trying to show you something was on your back, you know, and here I did go give him this long tirade of just, you know, all my stuff, basically. And we do that very often. Because we’re, we’re really not doing the work, we’re not figuring out what’s important to us what we need to work on what we need to do, how we need to take better care of the things that we have going on. So please do not dump your insecurities on your partner.

Now women, the next one is going to be pretty hard, but we got to, we got to get a hold of this too. And that is getting extremely upset when he is talking to another woman. Listen, it doesn’t feel good. I mean, of course, you know, it causes us to question our own cells and and our beauty and things like that. But just like our previous step, you know, that really is an insecurity, like, men are visual creatures, okay? If they see something that is attractive and enticing, it’s natural to look and even though I can agree there’s different ways of doing this, you know, you certainly don’t expect him to begin openly flirting or saying anything to her out of the way it would be really probably not even realistic to expect that your significant other will never look at another woman and never find another woman attractive.

You know, just to explain this, I like to talk a little bit about our biology. And so for those of us who have either had children, or want to have children, you know, think about how our bodies work. Like it takes us nine months to be able to bring these little creatures into this world. And for those of us who are really familiar with fertility, there’s only a small window of time, within a month that we can even conceive and get pregnant for minutes completely opposite. They can get pretty much if their fertility is in place. They can get anyone pregnant at any given time. And it doesn’t take them you know, nine months to do it. They could get 20 minutes women pregnant in one month is that you know if their cycle is coordinated with fair biology, so that is why sometimes we have men who show up and they have three kids the same age so they’re not triplets.

So it’s important to understand that Like it’s a neurobiologist of DNA to be able to look at women and getting a certain arousal and response and not take offense to that, because it is also an ICNA to as women be maybe maybe insecure about that, you know, and definitely uncomfortable about that. But we have, it’s about education and understanding that that’s how we’re naturally inclined, such that when we’re doing it appropriately, we have to be less insecure about it and more mindful about their needs. And they have to be more cautious of our emotional, how that makes us feel, and what you know, what types of thoughts come up in terms of commitment, when that comes together nicely, it makes a really good team, it makes a really good system going on. But when it doesn’t go together, well, it can be havoc, and it can make your relationship very challenging. And conflict will arise. Okay.

Next, we want to make sure that we are respecting his personal space. Okay, this goes along with not having your own life, like many ways men are in this, and I got this from the book, I’m looking at it right now. Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. And in this book, and if you haven’t read it yet, I recommend that you go to it and go to audible right now and download it on Amazon, like yesterday. And I also have made references to it in my best selling book, sacred journey to Lady hood, because it really does talk about the differences in the ways that men and women communicate. But one of the examples that they gave is that when a man is feeling, and this is based off of research, this is not something that is just the author’s opinion. But when a man is in trouble, or even when they’re in a good place, or just trying to relate a lot of times, what they don’t want to do is step away, not step away from you, as a woman, it doesn’t have any reflection, this is why the education is important, and the insecurities and stuff is important.

If a male wants to withdraw, it doesn’t mean that he doesn’t love you, or he doesn’t want to be with you, or he doesn’t want to connect with you. It simply means that this is how they kind of sort things out. And again, I know from experiences and in my relationship with my husband of eight years of this time, but dating him a total of 10 years, or being with him for total 10 years, you know, when things come up, a lot of times I even know that something’s going on, even if he hasn’t told me because he requires his distance. But once he gets the situation resolved, and it’s like this with most men, they will spring back, it’s kind of like a rubber band, they have to come away when they you know, resolve it on their own and rely on these cultures.

If I can just give a quick example, when I did a study abroad in South Africa, and I don’t remember which tribe this is. So please forgive me if you know more about this than I do. But I just really want to give the example. A lot of the men did not get circumcised until they were a teenager, maybe 1211 13. And that was a huge determination into manhood, because not only were they getting circumcised at a later time than we do in the US, but they had a responsibility to heal themselves, and they would heal themselves in private, they’d have to go away and be asked when this was at the time that I was there, which was in 2000, I think maybe 2005 2006. But they would have to go away, and maybe self medicate, or really healing it.

In fact, they weren’t even supposed to scream when as this was happening. I don’t know how this happened. And it’s funny because we’re specific guy who told me about it told me not only do they have to do that, but the person that did him had had a couple of whiskies that day and use the machete like it was a really invasive process. But the point was to come into their manhood, it was a requirement that they figured out how to heal from that. And once the person had done that, they would come back and everyone would know that was their official introduction into being a man. So even though you know, we don’t typically do that here in the US, you know, that does hold a big message for what it means to really be a man like that was their initiation into manhood is to be able to separate figure this out, work it out, and then you come back to the community and I have found, and I can speak and I’ll speak about this personally, in situations where I’ve allowed my husband to do that, as opposed to me try to support him or try to help me I do try to support him by allowing him to do it. But for me trying to maybe give too many suggestions or me hold his hand through the process.

The results have just been better when he has been able to figure it out for his own a lot of that has to do with we as girls grew up caregiving and taking care of men grow up playing with, you know, the firefighters or, you know, playing with action figures, like they’re solving problems, and they’re not doing it necessarily with our assistance. So you want to make sure that you’re giving your man a space to do Wahid naturally does in the same way that you expect him to be able to honor your needs in the way that you act naturally need them. So please respect your man space and allow him to be able to do what he needs to do to work through his problems. All right.

Next, we want to discuss being better. Ladies, I just want to say and I’m gonna just keep this nice and short. Because even me, I don’t have time for bitterness, like, if you choose to be in relationship with a man, okay? After you have been traumatized, or even more so after he has traumatized or violated you are, or harmed you in some way, shape or form, which in reality, all relationships have some form of discomfort and pain and disappointment. That’s just the nature of the beast, because we are all imperfect and, and imperfect human beings, you know, that’s the nature of being a person. So you know, we are, we, you’re grouchy in response to things like that, you have a tendency to, to harm people, and to harm your relationships, it’s not good, and it’s not healthy.

And next, we want you to make sure that you are not taking like, no, that the challenge of Listen, not taking care of yourself and letting yourself go. In reality, and this is just like what we were talking about earlier, men are visual creatures, and I’m in and I’m not saying that a man has any right to you know, just respect you are definitely, you know, infidelity, you know, these things are not appropriate. And actually, the research shows that most of the time when infidelity happens with men, it’s really not because they’re not attracted to the woman that they’re with, etc. But you want to make sure that you are understanding that it’s so important to take care of yourself, like their visual.

And so if you want them even though it might not justify why they are not that why they are distant from you, it also says a lot about how they can be connected and attracted towards you, too. So it moms, I know this, because I’ve got I mean, I’ve got two kids under the age of five, and one isn’t inset. So yes, sometimes it is hard, especially on the weekend, when I don’t have any major obligations, it does help a little bit because I’m around the camera several times throughout the day. So that helps with me, but but it’s still a challenge. So you want to make sure that you are finding ways to to self care because if you are not doing that, then it shows that not only are you not taking care of yourself, but the person that’s you know, looking at us is going to also internalize those messages, and not really want to be connected to that.

Alright, next we’re going to talk about having poor anger management strategies. Now listen, I get it. You know, we as women, we don’t want to be pushovers. We don’t want to be doormats. We want to be able to assert ourselves in healthy ways. But if you do, and a whole bunch of screaming, and yelling, and heaven forbid, being physically violent, are emotionally blocked, violent, you know, it kills me, when women will say things that are really condescending, and like putting their hand down, like, I remember going to a baby shower, for a couple that wasn’t married.

And I remember them saying things along the lines of, you know, you want to make sure that when the gift said something to a little boy whose father was daddy’s boy, something was on the shirt, and he responded with, you haven’t done shit, excuse my language, I said I wasn’t going to be doing cursing on this podcast. But the point is, you know, I couldn’t help but feel really bad for the Father. Because it looked like the person was, you know, putting them down and and I didn’t like it, I felt embarrassed for the man and I could imagine that they felt embarrassed as well. So please make sure that we’re understanding how to manage our anger and how to make help men film men like make them feel validated and supported and a part of whatever it is that you have going on.

Next, I want to talk about you know, not appreciating your partner. not appreciating your partner is a very big deal because sometimes they you know, your partner might not make as much money or your partner might, you know, make mistakes. I mean, gosh, making a lot of mistakes, but men are and listen, this is not a jab at men, I love men, but you know, they want to feel appreciated and supported and sometimes they have insecurities, too, just like that. So, you know, unless they do the dishes and they didn’t do them.

Well, you know, that he did the dishes, you know, and if we’re criticizing or putting those things down, for what, he’s not going to help you with the dishes anymore, which you want someone helping you if if they’re being criticized, but also, in a nutshell, it’s just really discouraging, you know, to have those things happen. And those are the types of things that, you know, I always I’m a big fan of divorce Proofing Your Marriage, your marriage, and we have to realize that men are adults, they can make choices. And they can choose whether or not to be with the person who supports them and validates them and encourages them, versus one that does not. So, so be cautious of the way that you treat him and make him feel.

And finally, and we’ve talked about this earlier, but I really want to just kind of nail it again, is you know, respecting his personal space and making sure that he feels validated. That’s really what it boils down to. So a lot of times, because men and women think differently. On many occasions, again, I’ve tried to give examples about the differences in the way we think and the impact that that has. We think differently. And whenever a person makes another person feels like feel like their opinion, or their perspective is not valuable in that it’s not important. That can cause havoc on a relationship.

And if you want someone to hear what you’re saying, you have to be willing to hear what another person is saying. And again, this is important, whether you agree or not, like I think a lot of times, we feel like just because we don’t agree, means that, you know, the other person’s perspective is not important. And that’s not the case. You’re different people, you’re different genders, you know, you come to terms with what the way you perceive information just differently. And you need to be respectful when your partner does not agree with what you’re saying, okay?

So these are just a few tips that I seek will help you to have better relationships and understand what you could be doing to interfere with the quality of the relationships that you have, or will have in the future. Keep in mind, we’re all human. This is a work in progress. If I’ve stepped on your toes, which I hope I have, because it’s a way to get you to be accountable for making better choices, then please respond accordingly, you know, but also give yourself some grace and understand that you’re human. And we all make mistakes. And really, it’s about trying to be the best woman that you can be for not only your partner, but for yourself in your children and generations that will fall behind me.

All right. Thank you for your time today. As you know, I am Dr. O. And it’s been my pleasure to work with you. Peace and blessings. And have a great week. Take care and talk to you later. Bye.

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