Mama Sista Single Caribbean Gal? Can I please testify?

I have a story to tell.

I just read a tweet one of my followers retweeted from the user @AskCheyB stating – “So many men are living off of their woman, sitting around doing nothing because they have a woman with low self-esteem who does everything!” (I ignored the “off of” and you can too)

Now where was this tweet circa 2002-2003? Only God Himself knows in His infinite wisdom and mercy.

One thing is for sure though – I was that woman.

If you told me around that time, that I was doing these things due to low self-esteem, I may have been up in arms, ready to fight and shoot off at the mouth to declare that this was not the case. However, in my old age, I realize that this was in fact the case. What a little low-self-esteem-having-bee I was.

My ex was an eye-opening experience to say the least, and I do not even have enough space to describe that whole era in. The young man decided that he was not going to work due to his trouble with authority – or so he would say. In the short time we dated, he held and left 4 jobs before deciding to call it quits on the whole. And when I say call it quits, I mean call it quits from trying to hold down a job altogether.

Of course, naturally, being the wonderful girlfriend that I was, I even tried to help him start a business, funding all of the startup costs so that he could not have trouble with authority. Everything was fine until one day, when he woke up and decided that he wasn’t going to continue the business anymore.

And that was that. Conversation with me about it? No. Return on investment? None.

The truth as I see it now is that he was comfortable. If he failed to hold down a job, his family was always there to pick him up and get him out of whatever situation. I have to blame myself of course, I didn’t do my homework on his full background, or study his family and search the deeper meaning of surface actions and dynamics. I plunged head first into the finest bowl of cow chili s**t you could ever imagine and swam around in this hot pungent stew for close to a year.

I was living on my own, covering all bills – rent, light, phone, food, gas etc. as a good independent woman should. The problem arose when small things began to arrive and remain at my place. The shoes here, the toothbrush there, the duffle bag here, the favorite pillow there. Then suddenly, his mom was asking when “we” were going “home”.

Wait wa?

Funny enough, I was still there covering everything, except now it was for two people. We lived the strangest lives ever – he begged and bummed rides, washed and ate at his mom’s house, while I dutifully covered all of the bills still – except again, now it was for two.

Don’t get me wrong, we had a fantastic time together! All of the trappings of a great relationship, minus the leeching-nigga-low-self-esteem-dumb-broad combination.

The final straw that enabled the scales to fall from my eyes was this one special day when he decided we should attend a social event together. He explained that he had rustled up enough money to cover his entrance fee for the event, but not for both of us. “No biggie”, I decided, and went to the ATM to get my portion so that we could go. He went to the store next door. When we were driving to the event, I noticed he was drinking a beer.

In actuality he had bought 3.

3 beers.

3 beers was more than the cost of my entrance fee.

Slowly the fog faded from my mind – he had enough money to purchase these beers, but not enough to pay for me to get in this event he wanted us to go to.

Well Lord have mercy. I finally lost it. And I made the decision to do better for myself and leave him alone.

Let me ask you guys a few questions:

Do you know about your man dropping you off to work, and picking you up late in your own car?

What do you know of him pulling up with his friends in your car? Heaven forbid a female steps out the front seat and causes you to recall your birthright and religion.

Do you know about footing all bills while your man chills all day?

Have you heard of having enough money to buy smokes and dranks all day, but not enough for food?

Looking back at it now, I can only laugh about it. But oh man, at the time…

Foolish chick that I was, I am grateful for the experience. I have and still am working on the self-esteem issues and lack of training to ensure that I NEVER EVER find myself in such a situation again in this life. IF you are in such a situation today, I would advise you to truly see it for what it is – that man will not change and will continue to leech off you as long as you allow him to! You are not Captain “Save-A-Lousy-Nicca”, you have a life of your own to take care of, and many men out there are in a position to be a partner and companion rather than this leech you lay down next to each night. IF you need help, drop me a line.

Thank you Sista Single Gal for allowing me this space. And now ladies, if you will open up your hymnals to page 3, we will sing the hymn, “Don’t Do It”…