We should all take the time to decide what is or is not a priority to us as individuals. There is no collective reasoning concerning what YOUR priorities are. What is most important to you may be of no importance to others. ~ PAUSE ~ Your friends’ opinions can’t really help you here. Sometimes you gotta stand on your own! ~PLAY~ It sounds easy, but it is difficult to rid your mind of the outside world’s influence and really take your life, emotions, needs and wants into consideration. You’ll find some of the demands you’ve placed on yourself, your friends, and your significant other have no real bearing. While these points may be valuable, they just are not a priority. And there is a difference. The non-negotiables…

It was years before I realized I want to be with a man who is FOCUSED on me. Sure, he has other responsibilities, but I want him to make me feel like nothing is more important than me. ~PAUSE~ I’ve dated men with children, and I’ve made exceptions for the kids. I cannot respect a man who puts off his children for anyone! I know it is judgmental, but my past governs my emotions and I was put off because my father could not handle his “new family” and his “old daughter.” Ironically, he did the same thing with my older brother from a different mother. It’s safe to say my unsatisfied desire to be No. 1 in my father’s life has found its way into the present day expectations I place on a man. ~PLAY~So if/when I date a man with a kid(s), he must know how to make me feel like a priority while keeping his children at the top of his list.

Trust and honesty are not to be negotiated… in MY relationships. I know women who are in relationships with well-established, Ivy League-degree holding men who pay the bills, but lie religiously. They lie about everything from the people they know, to the women they have or have not attempted to hit on, to where they spend the night. I cannot deal with a lying man. If I can’t trust you, I can’t rock with you. Some women have made “the resume” of a man a priority. And that is their right. It is important to them. I’ve heard women who are married to professional sports players say, “Broke men cheat, too. I rather be with a rich man who cheats.” ~PAUSE~ Listen, people tell themselves all type of ish to make themselves feel better about what they’ve made a priority, if they sense society frowns on it. Truth is, if you are comfortable with a cheating man, do you! But I’m not… Just because I’m not comfortable doesn’t mean the man I’m with won’t cheat; anything is possible. It just means what happens should he cheat and I find out maybe a lot different than the actions of a woman who has not made monogamy a priority. ~PLAY~

You have to be okay with what works for you. Forget society and the outside world. They are not by your side at night. They are not there when you are alone with your thoughts. Yes, I know most of us are quite concerned with the ideals we’ve been conditioned to believe are best for our lives. Well, now that you’ve lived a bit, I challenge you to take a minute and evaluate your own life. What makes you tick? What makes you happy? What hurts you deeply? Are you a very sexual person? What type of people bring out the best and worse in you? Once you’ve given the above, and more, some thought, determine what you can and cannot do without in a relationship. Establish your non-negotiables and enjoy your significant other/dating life.

Do me a favor though, don’t hit ‘em with all of this heavy chat on the first date… You don’t always have to TELL people who you want them to be or what you’re looking for in personality. Let them SHOW you who they are. After all, nobody wants to be with the representative; the real person always shows up at some point. That’s when the conversations really begin and things get interesting, better or worse.

Okay, I think I’ve made my point.

Still learning me and evaluating…XO~