First off, there is no way to “prove” yourself to someone trying to test your loyalty. No matter what you do, there will ALWAYS be “one more thing” you should of, could of, would of, done IF you were really the loyal “bitch” you claim to be.
Yes, those words were used on me before. And last I checked, I’m not a female dog, so referring to me as “you’re my bitch” is kinda a deal breaker already. After all, who wants to be with a man who can’t get his species straight?
But I digress.
Secondly, I have no need for anyone else - male, female, nonbinary, purple people eater, or confirmed Extraterrestrial being - to go out and create MY life for me. I was born a fully autonomous human. And while I don’t claim to have all the answers, I do intend to give this thing called “life” my best go.
On my terms.
Not on what little someone else says I am “allowed” to do in a very limited role I didn’t agree to.
To paraphrase the founding fathers, I hold these truths about my own identity, and freedom to make choices for myself, to be self-evident. Yet often I feel like I am alone in my adherence to the “we are all humans, equals, deserve respect, and aren’t subject to another’s will” common sense logic.
Daily, I see memes on social media in which women proudly proclaim themselves as their boyfriend’s ride or die. A bit concerning in a culture where the risk taking may literally end up making the latter part of that cliche a reality.
According to OneLove - an organization whose purpose is teaching people the difference between healthy and unhealthy connections:
“Ride or die is a term used to describe a person (usually a woman) that is willing to do anything for their partner, friend, or family, even in the face of danger. A ride or die is often praised for their fierce loyalty and commitment to their partner but ride or die relationships are all too often code for unhealthy relationships.” (*1)
I know that to be true first hand, as the man who nearly destroyed not just my finances, but my mind with his intentional abuse, often used this phrase to list ways that I was not living up to his expectations.
To be clear, it is not my job to live up to someone else’s expectations of who they want me to be. Neither is it yours. And never ever ever when the intent is to harm you, in order to benefit them.
I am, however, a “hey babe I love what you’re doing in your life. And since you love what I’m doing, let’s join forces and have a grand adventure in which we both feel amazing” kinda girl.
Personally I think my version sounds way better, than ride or die. So if I can come up with a catchy sounding cliche for it, I’ll happily post. But seriously, this ride or die mentality IS toxic.
Yet this is not the only vile saying that women portray proudly on their Instagram feeds. I’ve seen dozens of versions of Instagram stories in which the man talks about how a “good woman” stands behind her man “no matter what”. And then these women, repost the blah blah as though it’s an attribute to aspire to.
So let me this straight. I am to embrace an ideology that says YOU can do whatever you want, behave in any manner, and I am SUPPOSED to passively stand there with a smile on my face and say “that’s ok, I will love him no matter what”.
That mentality is a bit nauseating.
Cue the red flag brigade because darlin, that’s grooming someone to be abused - mentally, emotionally, maybe even physically. I don’t think the phrase “stand by your man” was ever meant to be a blanket method for absolution for his transgressions. Forgiveness is not so divine when you’re forced to grant it.
And then there’s the final weirdness going around. That unless I am on a “girl’s night out” chaperoned by a half a dozen drunk females who will protect me from acting out, I’m to stay home when not in the company of “my man”.
If I was cartoon character my eyes would literally by three feet tall and just ROLLING right now. When did it become necessary for me to get a permission slip to go out on my own?
It makes no sense. I love live music, comedy, long walks, taking classes, dancing all night, attending cool events, etc., ON MY OWN.
Even when I have a significant other.
Especially if he doesn’t have an interest in that activity.
There is no joy in missing out on something that interests me. And it is a horrible experience to drag someone along who clearly doesn’t want to be there. So why wouldn’t I go it alone?
I mentioned this once to a guy who was so surprised that I was out alone at a bar, enjoying a mocktail, and vibing to the rocking band on stage.
“But everyone knows a girl out alone is just looking for trouble” he replied with a lascivious wink.
If that’s the common misconception, we as a society have to do a lot better at raising kids to understand that all genders are equal. And none of us need permission to live our own lives, with or without a partner.
Furthermore it’s terrifying to think that me, a fellow human who happens to have been born with a pussy, is out “looking for trouble” by enjoying her own company. Trouble is the last thing on my mind.
The music was on my mind. At least until the cool sounds were drowned out by this caveman’s bungling attempt at a pickup line. Note: He finally got the hint and left after he realized that my answer about going home with him wasn’t going to change from a resounding “no”. Interestingly, he never did think to introduce himself. So to this day, I don’t know his name.
Lest we get too negative here, let’s leave aside the ideas of what I am not, and share a bit of what I am.
I am fiercely independent, and love living life on my terms. This means that I do NOT need a man to “complete” my life. But if you are someone that I DESIRE, WANT, ENJOY spending time with, maybe even eventually fall in LOVE with, consider that a compliment. Because I know my worth, and this means I recognize yours as well.
I am open, direct, and straightforward, about both sex and relationships. I prefer to keep the games for games night out (or in), and instead I say what I am interested in (or not) with you. This means I have courage, respect your time, and won’t waste your energy pretending to want something that I don’t want.
I am a romantic, curious, and passionate person, both in and out of the bedroom. So even if we don’t have the same interests, I will be happy to listen to you wax on about yours, and try to learn about it so I can share some of your joy from various activities. This also means I’m willing to try most things at least once. Adventure is the spice of life - whether on the road, or behind closed doors.
I’ll stop here before I start sounding like a dating profile on an app. (And no, I am not on any dating apps. It’s not my thing, and I’m never “looking” for a partner anyway. Plus I meet a lot of people as I travel and explore.)
It is true that these misogynistic ideas of what it means to be a good partner to someone though, has touched a nerve. Because, through the positivity work I have done for years, I get messages every week from both men and women battling loneliness, and wishing for authentic human connections.
Yet how can we have healthy relationships, if we think it’s “cute” to post toxic ideas as the couple goals to aspire to?
Maybe the problem here isn’t men’s ideas versus women’s when it comes to relationships. It could be that we, collectively, have let a nameless, faceless, entity - society - define how we should think, feel, and act towards one another.
Perhaps it’s time we ALL took back our power then, and made it so the only people defining a relationship are the people who are actually in it, and not a badly generated meme.
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Tink, world traveler, positivity muse, and adult entertainer, has also freelance written for a number of companies as their ghostwriter. Now talking directly to YOU on this platform, she is also writing two books at her community's request.