James and Melissa (Mel) were in year 0 of their marriage. They had only been married a few months. One issue they had to deal with was how James was going to handle women from his past—many whom Mel knew and many with whom he was still in communication with because they all moved in the same circles.
After much discussion (mostly James trying to explain why those women weren’t a factor anymore…and Mel not buying it), they agreed that he would only have cordial relationships with them, meaning he’d be friendly if/whenever he ran into one of them, but he’d take care to keep it moving after that. Not a problem. He could cut those chicks back further.
But on the flip side, Mel had some dudes she needed to cut back too. Specifically, her ex-boyfriend, who we’ll call Jack.
When James and Mel got engaged, Mel still had some feelings for Jack because they were once in love. Even though they rarely saw each other and only spoke on the phone every now and then, James knew Jack was still “running game”…because he recognized it. Therefore, James knew…that Jack still thinks…he could still get her back if he wanted to (if you know what I mean).
James knew they still kept in touch by phone every now and then. And James didn’t mind as long Jack respected him as a her husband. After all, Mel on occasion would have to see some of his old buns (read: females he associated with during his single days) around the way if they ever bumped into one of them at work or their various shared social scenes .
So one day, Jack made his move. He hit Mel with the, “You know I still love you.” Like a good wife, Mel immediately told James about it.
“You either shut it down…or I’m gonna shut it down!” James demanded.
“I’ll shut it down,” she conceded. So Mel told Jack that she told her husband what he said and she couldn’t talk to him anymore.
So one night, a couple months later, James was in the living room saying his prayers before going to bed. Mel was asleep in the bedroom. While praying James nods off. But while he was sleep, he had a dream that Mel was talking on the phone to Jack.
He suddenly wakes up. Mad! The dream felt more like a vision. And since he was praying, he figured it was a sign from the Lord. So James rushed into the bedroom.
“Melissa! Melissa!” he belts as he nudges her shoulder.
“Huh?” she said as she looked back at him.
“Did you talk to Jack today?
“DID YOU TALK TO JACK TODAY?
“Uh…yeah,” she said puzzled and reluctantly.
He blew up! “OMG…We talked about this!!! I told you not to…blah blah blah!!! And you weren’t supposed to…blah blah blah!!!”
Then the thought hit him. “Wait a minute,” he paused, “…did you call him or did he call you?”
“I called him…” she answered, “because…”
“Oh My God!” James interrupts. “How dare you!!! You tellin’ me about how I’m not supposed to be around these women I used to mess with, and you’re going behind my back calling dude!?!”
The rest of what was said is classified. But just know…he read her the riot act. From that moment, she knew never to do anything like that again because God was going to tell on her.
The Moral of this Story
The moral of this story is moral authority. It’s not about what Mel did wrong, but what James did right.
If you want to be respected as a leader in your relationship, you must have the moral authority to hold yourself and your mate accountable to the agreed upon rules for your relationship.
If James would have been out there running-game on one of his old-buns, he would have been just like Jack…and just as wrong as Mel. He would have lost any moral authority to challenge Mel.
But because he adhered to the rules they set, he had the moral authority to challenge her and hold her accountable to their agreed upon rules.
This doesn’t mean you are the police or enforcer of the rules. But you are positioned to lead by example. And what woman doesn’t respects that?
BMWK, what do you do if your mate DOESN’T have the moral authority to hold you accountable, but tries to anyway?