Dear Dr. Buckingham,
I am a 36-year-old, single female and I deal with what I think a lot of successful black women are dealing with – the idea that we have to date down. In other words, settle for less than what we desire in a man. I have been living in the D.C. area since graduating from Howard University. I am from Alabama and have a southern girl mentality. I share that to say that I am traditional in nature and believe that men should be head of the household. However, I do not believe that I should be submissive to a man who does not know what being the head of household means.
I recently dated this janitor because he was a nice person. However, whenever we talked about important things like building a financially stable future, I found myself getting frustrated. His knowledge of finances was limited and he only appeared to be interested in creating a savings account. I tried being patient and even offered to attend a financial management seminar together. He got frustrated and told me that I act like I am better than him.
I feel like someone is playing a joke on me because I keep running into brothers who try to make me feel guilty about being successful. After being on the dating scene for so long, I am losing hope. I can’t find a man who meets my standards. It is tough for a sister and I am thinking that maybe I should just settle for what I can get. Should I Continue to Date Men Who Do Not Meet My Standards?
Discouraged Single Sister
Dear Discouraged Single Sister,
I apologize up front, but my response will be fairly brief because the answer to your question is no. You should not continue to date men who do not meet your standards. I can empathize with your frustration and discouragement, but settling for less will only keep you frustrated. You are part of a community of successful women who are finding it more and more difficult to find love. However, I firmly believe that things happen for a reason and when they are supposed to. What does this mean to you? Glad you asked.
Sometimes we want things to happen in a certain way and in a certain timeframe. We place a lot of stress on ourselves to secure things outside of our control. When it comes to love, we cannot control how and when it shows up. However, I can tell you that settling for less is not going get you any closer to getting what you desire or deserve.
Some people say that patience is a virtue and use this saying to encourage others to “chill-out.” I try not to use this saying when it comes to matters of the heart and finding love because I know that it is difficult to be patient when you feel like you are ready and capable of being in a relationship. Please keep in mind that you might be ready, but if you jump into a relationship with a man who is not compatible with you, your frustration will be magnified, thus increasing your discouragement.
The easiest way to break the frustration-discouragement cycle is to minimize interactions with men who do not meet your standards. Whenever you allow nonsense into your personal space, it will disrupt any harmony that you have in your life and negatively impact your psyche. This, in turn, can cause or contribute to discouragement.
When life drags you down and you feel discouraged, please surround yourself with people who can lift you up. Also, remember that you cannot find happiness in any relationship by lowering your standards. If you desire to be in a relationship that lifts you up, you cannot date men who try to drag you down. Also, if you are interested in being in the presence of women who stopped settling for less and started believing that they deserve more, please consider attending the premiere of my new film titled, “You Deserve More” on March 29, 2018, at the Avalon Theatre in Washington, D.C. You can secure your ticket at www.ydmcommunity.com .
I wish you the best on your journey to getting what you desire. Be mindful that a decision can either make you happy or make you miserable so learn to order your decisions before you act. Always decide to pray before you act.
If you have questions for Dr. Dwayne Buckingham regarding relationships (married, single, etc), parenting, or personal growth and development, please send an email to email@example.com
Disclaimer: The ideas, opinions, and recommendations contained in this post are not intended as a substitute for seeking professional counseling or guidance. Any concerns or questions that you have about relationships or any other source of potential distress should be discussed with a professional, in person. The author is not liable or responsible for any personal or relational distress, loss or damage allegedly arising from any information or recommendations in this post.
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