Let Me Cater To You

BY: - 2 Jul '09 | Relationships

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Destiny’s Child’s “Cater 2 U” is one of my favorite songs. Not that it’s particularly groundbreaking, or the vocal acrobatics are on any “Best of” lists, but I just plain like it. In just four minutes, the sexy trio summed up my whole outlook on any of my relationships. I’m a caterer, damn it, and I always, always do my best to take care of those I love.

But for some women, the thought of “catering” to someone makes them feel like a waiter. And they don’t like it, no matter how big the “tips” may be.

I read an article about actress Zoe Saldana (you know, from Drumline) in Latina magazine. She discussed bringing her boyfriend over to her grandma’s house and he asked her (Zoe) for some water. Instead of fulfilling his request, she told him where to find the kitchen and the glasses. Wow ““ really?

She said her grandma’s mouth dropped open, as she couldn’t believe Zoe couldn’t ““ no, WOULDN’T ““ fulfill her boyfriend’s request.

As simple as it may seem, her actions are seen as a “You go, girl!” move (Wow, I’m taking it back to the 90s with that phrase!). The author of the article makes it a point that Zoe doesn’t take mess from any man.

But what’s so wrong with getting the man a glass of water? As a guest? In your grandma’s house? Yes, he’s a grown man with arms that work and legs that move, but still.

What people don’t fail to realize is it’s those small gestures that keep a relationship strong. When you fix your man a plate, or open the door for your woman, it lets him or her know that yes, they still matter to you. When they rub your back without being asked, or bring you some water after “sexy time” (with two ice cubes just the way you like it), it means something.

When we think we’re too independent, too assertive, too confident to ever find ourselves “catering” to anyone, that’s when trouble brews. Men love to feel like they are the king, and ladies, you know we most definitely prefer it if our man treats us like a queen.

So do a little “catering” today. Pick up their favorite dessert on the way home. Instead of nagging about the dirty clothes on the floor, just put them in the hamper. Running home late from work? Fix them a plate and put it in the microwave. Warm up some baby oil and give them a post-dinner rubdown.

BMWK family ““ do you like to “cater” to your significant other? What’s one of those small things that you do that show them that you care?

Tara Pringle Jefferson is a freelance writer living in Ohio with her husband and two children. Visit her blog, www.theyoungmommylife.com, to read more of her observations about life, motherhood and love.

About the author

Lamar Tyler wrote 2193 articles on this blog.

Lamar Tyler is co-creator BlackandMarriedWithKids.com. He also is the co-producer of the films Happily Ever After: A Positive Image of Black Marriage, You Saved Me, Men Ain't Boys and Still Standing.

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14 WordPress comments on “Let Me Cater To You

  1. Donielle Michele

    I love that song to Tara! I LOVE catering to my husband and I see nothing wrong with it. I love how his eyes light up when he realizes I’ve made his favorite dinner or had a tall glass of juice waiting for him when he gets home. Those things matter and it helps a man be a man. I remember hearing, sometime ago, that it is important for a woman to make her husband feel like a man. Before anybody comments with:you can’t make a man feel like anything…lol, let me explain. What I mean is, when you have a jar that needs to be opened, instead of getting the jar opener from the drawer….ask your husband to open it. If you bought a piece of furniture that needs to be put together, don’t always do it yourself, ask your man. Then when he is done, fix him lunch or a drink (non alcoholic….lol). This may sound small or weird but it is VERY important in a relationship. I, myself, am a Do It Yourself, kind of woman so I have to make sure I don’t dominate the above things I’ve mentioned. I do everything from washing the clothes to repair work so it is hard to let someone else do it at times. All in all, both men and women need to make it their job to make their partner happy and feel significant. Like I used to tell everybody when the NE-Yo song “Miss Independent” came out: “I have no desire to be “Miss Independent”, just Mrs. D.” <—-meaning, I am a married woman and it’s no longer just about me and what I can aquire for myself. Marriage is selfless and it’s time we start realizing it. Our grandmother and the women before could teach us a thing or two about really “pleasing your man.”

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  2. rj

    Although I am not married, I have been in a relationship for a while now. Nothing is more important to me than catering to my man and making him feel special. We don’t live together so the time we spend together is precious to me. Cooking for him, serving him a meal or bringing him dinner makes him feel special. In return he serves me dinner or breakfast,opens all doors for me, fixes things in my house. Catering to each other shows mutual love and respect. I agree with Donielle Michelle being Ms. Independent is great, but that can also leave you lonely. Woman need to understand that just because you do things for your man, it doesn’t make you less independent. It strengthens the bond between the two of you. Little acts of kindness shows appreciation for the other person.

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  3. Michele

    I see nothing wrong with “catering” to your man. I cater to my husband every single day. I fix his plate, and bring him his drink, and I’ve been doing that since we met (13 & 1/2 years ago). If he asks me to, I will rub his back, or give him a pedicure! It has nothing to do with my independence/individuality or that I’m “taking any mess off of him.” He’s my husband, the head of our household. He works just as hard, if not harder than I do, and it’s my way of saying I love him, and I respect him for what he does for me, and for our family. My aunties are amazed that I cater to him. They say my grandmother would be proud…and I believe she would be. I don’t do it because I feel like I have to, I do it because I want to, and it just comes natural to me. He appreciates the little things, and I’m not so self-absorbed that I need a “thank you” each and every time because I know that he appreciates everything that I do for him. I don’t feel like a waiter, and I don’t feel like I need to be “tipped” in exchange for what I do. I don’t want him straying away from me…from home for ANYTHING when I’m more than capable of doing it myself. If you don’t do it, believe me, someone else will!

    Reply
  4. Allygyrl702

    @ Michele… I think you hit the nail on the head when you said you do it because you want to. For centuries, and I even beg to say, millenia women have had to OBLIGATION to serve their husbands as their masters. Thus, with the women’s movement many women shyed away from those seeming obligatory duties to their men. However I feel when you have a good man who loves you and takes care of you and your family and he even caters to you then the LEAST you could do is cater to him. THAT is your man!! No one would ever question a mother catering to her child so I think it is more relevant for a wife to cater to her husband… AND VICE VERSA!

    Allygyrl702s last blog post..Frenemy

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  5. Harriet

    I was discussing this with a friend today. I think it’s important for me to cater to my husband, but on the same token I don’t like being taken advantage of. The small things I do daily to please him should warrant at least a “Thank you, baby.”

    I’m not catering to him to get something in return, but for a season, I feel like I was taken for granted, so the small things I did become more like chores than simple pleasures. Every marriage goes through seasons like that.

    Bottom line, the “women’s lib” movement certainly didn’t do much for marriages and how to keep the honey in the moon as a wife and mother. This is certainly part of the process.

    Harriets last blog post..Silence

    Reply
  6. Anna

    It is hard sometimes to let a man be a man when one gets/got so use to doing it all. I am so quick to call tripple A when my car is broke. My hubby knows how to fix a car but I think I am using him or taking up his time when he could be doing something else. My hubby can take out the garbage, help with the dishes and laundry. He is even allowed to mow the grass. I have to mention he is the BBQ King. LOL. I always tell my daughters and my baby sis to let a man be a man. I don’t practice what I preach because I find it easier to do it myself. My kid sis gets married next Friday. I told her to let her fiance’ be “the man”. He moved in with her and has put down new kitchen tile.(I sure did want that $100 gift card from Home Depot for her). He painted the interior of the home and I wonder if he will take our dads last name after they get married. Just kidding. He is a great guy and I love my sisters soon to be mother-in-law as much as I do my own. I love to cater to my husband but there is a thin line between catering and spoiling. Hubby tells me I spoiled my only son rotten. I am not the one to go in the kitchen and make/bake a pie/cake, when he is feeling blue.(hubby does). We do spoil the ones we love.

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  7. Tina

    One thing I am finding out after 8 years of marriage is that if you treat our men special like someone said before, he will give back in return. I had a conversation with my husband and he jokes about being number 4 on my list of priorities, since we have two kids. I was upset at first because all I do is take care of this home and children when I come through the door from work until my head hits pillow. Than I thought about it and asked myself when was the last time I did something just for him. So catering to my man is now on my things to do list. I do things like calling him in the middle of the day and telling him that I love him. Fixing dinner. Watching his favorite shows and showing interest. Asking him what i should wear. Sending him picture messages :-). But he has started washing dishes. If I mention something, he will bring it to me while I am at work. He watches the kids and lets me relax. What I told him and what I truly believe is that we now have to work at our marriage. Before we had kids it was cake. But I am ready to do what I can to keep my marriage healthy! Cater to your man. Don’t worry about being taken avantage of. Love is a risk, but it is well worth the risk!!!!

    Reply
  8. K.K.

    Good topic. I must say though that its ver easy to cater when you are also being catered to. I grew up in ahome where my mom did all the catering and my dad did none. At times it seemed like she (and me) was his maid not his partner. I am convinced that this has colored my own relationship with my husband. I fear him tueing out to be just like my dad. And to be honest I think at times he is, but not as bad though! I agree with the catering but you need to be emotionally free to do it. We should live according to the scripture. “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.”

    Reply
  9. lynn

    I feel if you are in a strong/ healthy relationship, then to cater to your husband should not be a problem. I had three major surgeries in a span of 4 months; I would not have been able to do it without my husband. He took care of me 100%. Even before the surgeries if i were having a bad day, He would look out for me. Or he would get up early sunday morning and have breakfast sitting on the table with my paper. (something I often do for him).

    Reply
  10. Keshia

    Hello everyone! I am new to this site & enjoy reading the articles and comments :) I have a quick question. So many of you all mentioned catering to your husbands. Where do you draw the line at catering to your significant other who is NOT your husband? Like how much is too much or too little?

    Reply
  11. Daisy

    I LOVE that song and it came on today at the gym and I SANG my non SINGING heart out..lol I have always loved that song for some reason!

    Reply
  12. Darius Thornton

    Wow….I am a man and it’s very good and refreshing to see and know that there are still women out there who know exactly why this is so important! It’s very frustrating when one person is eager to meet the needs of the other willingly, as an expression of his love for her, but she still doesn’t see how the two relate: love and catering.

    Reply
  13. kisha

    I’m in love with my soon to be husband. We have been involved for ten years and we are more the comfortable. We do everything for eachother, love is good and worth it when you both are giving it your best. I’m looking for tips on how to cater to your man. I am currently working on a song about a women loving her man and catering to him. No Im not copying Beyounce I’m just trying to expand and express my love for my man and hopefully experssing what women all over the world may feel for their man.

    Reply
  14. Terri

    I love this article. Catering to your mate in my eyes should be a natural part of your relationship. It’s also called being nice!

    Most of the gestures you mentioned are things my husband and I do for each other. I’m glad to know we’re not the only married couple that are nice to each other. ;)

    Reply
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