“Single, until married,” when I started to share the topic of this post, I got a lot of mixed responses and a ton of questions, almost like the idea was unthinkable. I read an article, I Refused to Be Exclusive Until He Proposed that really surfaced feelings I had suppressed about this subject (blame it on social norms).
The female author, Sami Wunder shares the idea of “test driving,” the dating phase where your partner gets all the benefits of being with you but there’s no guarantee for a permanent commitment (whatever that means, people change spouses like bill collectors change phone numbers). Wunder’s solution is to date multiple people, and may the best man/woman prevail.
Players, pimps, and cheaters…please relax, your moment still hasn’t come. These relationships only work when all parties are aware of the circumstance… (read: creepin’ still aint cool). Let me say this now, there is a difference between exploring your options when seeking a long term commitment and simply having casual hook-ups (no shade, we’re all grown).
Wunder continues to express the idea of “single, until married” in Your Feminine Roadmap to His Commitment. She suggests limiting yourself to one person early on may be premature and make you feel forced to accept less than what you really want. Read: we accept BS because we have already invested everything into the wrong person.
Let’s be real for a moment, marriage is not just an emotional union it’s also transactional. Marriage is like a business merger; to cutoff other viable options before the paperwork is signed seems risky. I know many of us want to believe that relationships are all based on love, long walks on the beach, and IG posts (see previous post) but the truth is marriage isn’t all too far off from a corporate merger.
Ladies, we entered the business world during the Second World War, shouldn’t we use some of the savvy we’ve acquired from our professional lives into our dating lives? I genuinely believe we should examine all our options or diversify our portfolio if you will. I can’t think of any other aspect of life where options are not a good thing; jobs, investments, restaurants, ice cream (I’m obviously hungry), etc. The point is the more options you have the more data points you can gather that allow you the make the best decision for you, a decision made of genuine desire instead of desperation (strong word, I know but valid).
I am not disillusioned into believing that this practice is for everyone…you pretty much need to be gangsta’ af. This is a high risk bet (high risk, high reward). Recognize that many people, men and women, likely won’t be open to this concept (for me I’ve always preferred an Alpha male…their feeling of superiority gets them along in this situation as they try to prove their dominance over other men). I am not going to lie to you and say “yeah men are going to be thrilled to be on your roster,” they won’t; 1. ‘cause of male ego (it’s real and present af) 2. If they really like you, why would they want to share 3. You too need to comfortable with your partners exploration (I’m selfish af so this forever has me with a permanent eye roll).
Now….how can I say this…nicely, eh forget it… I am just going to say it… there are levels to this ish (Meek Mill voice).Now there are certain women that embody confidence, charisma, intelligence, beauty, etc…they are sought after and desired by many, not to be viewed as playthings, but as a prize worth battling for (yes more women than just Beyonce). If you are bringing certain high caliber traits to the table, a man will compete to be in your company. There was a time when men used to fight to the death for a woman’s hand in marriage…I’m not convinced we are that far evolved and being in an open relationship until you are fully committed seems a lot easier to swallow than a jousting match. What I am trying to say is make sure you take a long hard look at yourself to make sure you have your ish together, before you step foot onto this battle field. Be confident in what you want and want you have to offer.
Single until married, it’s simply an alternative, you can try it and hey if it doesn’t work you can go back to traditional dating practices. Regardless of what you choose never settle for less than what you want and deserve, although it’s hard stay committed to yourself and your happiness first and foremost.
Sidenote: I would be a bad friend and unrealistic if I didn’t mention this. Sex is great, but safe sex is best. In dating and relationships sex often comes naturally, if you’re going to be seeing multiple people make sure you’re doing it safely. Crabs are only good on a plate with drawn butter.
When CoCo sent me this article, I thought I was reading a satirical piece from The Onion. I can only imagine how many women will try this and not get the thing this woman supposedly got which is “long term security”. I’m not saying that this method can’t work, apparently it has for this woman. But, I’m not sure how you’re ever supposed to build an environment where love/vulnerability/ intimacy can thrive if both people are not giving some type of commitment.
I can already hear our female readers, saying “It’s about time we got the chance to act like men and explore our options.” Here is the thing though women post the Industrial Revolution have generally always had that option, just because you’ve made one bad choice ( ok more like several bad choices) in a potential partner doesn’t mean this way is any better. Ladies no desirable guy is going to spend his time wooing another woman while she is actively dating other guys in the hopes of finding a guy who she likes best. It makes no sense, we’ve detailed on this blog how the numbers are in a guy’s favor and even more so if you have your stuff together. The only guys who would do this are:
- Someone that’s just not that into you
It just makes no sense! To borrow Mr. Porter’s Five Forces, men, specifically those who are decent human beings, gainfully employed have significant buyer power (note this doesn’t mean guys in this category have carte blanche to be douchebags). Ladies, you can try it if you want to but know you’re probably getting someone who isn’t considered a catch. Perhaps that’s the catch? if nobody wants your man, then you don’t have to worry about him cheating?
Secondly, Ladies any guy who competes for you is discreetly acknowledging three things:
- You’re better than him
- He is not enough – if he’s competing he’s showing that his true self is not worthy of your acceptance. Consequently, your Prince Charming will more than likely turn into a frog shortly after he has won your heart.
- He has no other options
I wish I knew Ms. Wunder’s fiancé because he needs a friend. A halfway decent friend would have told him to get some self -respect and meet other women. Maybe if he had my momma she would have told him:
“Don’t ever chase after any girl, there are far more useful things to do with your life.”
The author is basically the car-dealer who tells you “If you walk out that door, I can’t guarantee this one of a kind 2005 Ford Escort for $25,000 will be here tomorrow, so you better buy it now” That’s how you end up with a 10 year old car, that you’re financing for 234% over 5 years. Needless to say, that’s not the foundation of a strong relationship. I’m sure Ms. Wunder got what she wanted for the mean time, but I’m also not so sure a follow-up in 5 years won’t be as entertaining as a RHOA reunion show.
In the same way, Ms. Wunder, could be marrying a dud (and I hope she isn’t) any guy who does this is also taking a big risk. When you pursue a woman, and decide to marry her after just 9 months of dating because you’re afraid to lose her, you’re probably not in the best state to make sound decisions. I was talking to a friend a few years back who had recently gotten married to his girlfriend of 7 years, you know what he told me?
“Dog, we dated for 7 years, and I thought I knew her, we got married and I don’t know who the f*ck she is”
Which reminds me of a saying,
“Men marry women hoping they will never change, and they always do. Women marry men hoping they will change and they never do.”
Best believe the girl you’re swooning over will change as time goes on, so it would behoove you to “test drive” her before you get tied down to some heavy and potentially expensive baggage. Not to mention if you think that a woman who made you compete for her love and propose marriage before agreeing to exclusivity will not have a wandering eye the moment the honeymoon period is over, I have some beachfront property in Kansas to sell you.
DON’T EVER PLAY YOURSELF BY DOING THE MOST FOR A WOMAN WHO IS DOING THE LEAST
All of this doesn’t mean guys can do whatever they want. I think men should be more honest about their intentions, while there are no guarantees in a relationship if you agree to be with someone, then be with that ONE person and if a time comes when the relationship is no longer working for you after attempts to make it work then leave gracefully.
I know some of you are part donkey and as such stubborn as a mule, and will try to pursue this strategy and for some of you it might work. However, I implore you to ask yourself these 5 questions first:
- Am I Beyoncé?
If Yes, then do as you please, if No, then go to Question 2.
- Am I Kerry Washington? You know on top of your game, confident attractive, great career, philanthropist, and have a top-rated primetime TV Show?
If Yes, then let men fight for you like the gladiators of old, if No, then go to Question 3.
- Am I Michelle Obama? Perhaps Barack Obama let his new found post-presidency swag get to his head and decided to jettison you for a young thing, and now you’re free to roam the streets like a roaring lion looking for man-candy to devour.
If Yes, then the world is your oyster, If No then go to Question 4.
- Am I Charlize Theron? You Know Oscar-Award Winning Actor.
If Yes, then perhaps you’re like one of the Monsters of ancient Greek lore. Medusa? A Siren? Whatever you may be then feast on your male suitors as you wish. If No, then go to question 5.
- Am I Beyoncé? Maybe you’ve had time to think and you are indeed Sasha Fierce.
If Yes, then let these men get in formation to win your heart. If No, then in the words of Kendrick Lamar, “Be Humble”.
At the end of the day, men generally value physical intimacy (sex), respect, loyalty and serenity from their female partners. They don’t necessarily want commitment, and most men will stay with a woman who doesn’t force them to give her a commitment. Women generally value love, COMMTITMENT, security, protection, and a provider (or at least the belief he can provide for her if “she got her own). Ms. Wunder basically did what guys do to women all the time, she got what she wanted without I’m assuming giving the man what he wanted. Guys have been doing this for years due to social constructs, just because women know have the social equity to do it, doesn’t make it right.
The author has obviously made some bad choices in her past relationships and props to her she tried to fix it and was honest about her intentions which is more than what many men will do. She gets one soul clap for her honesty and a