[THE LOVERS ROCQUE] Channel Your Inner Relationship Expert

Attention: love lockdown issued on help "experts"

The obsession with being single or married is driving Mr. Rocque and I crazy, so I’d like to share our rant based on an ongoing conversation. I never knew how popular the topic of love and relationships was until I became more of an Internet lurker. (I so don’t mean to sound creepy.) It never fails; self-professed “gurus” and experts pose themselves as some sort of authority on all things [fill in the blank, but usually addressing Black women]. There’s blog on top of radio show geared toward dating, or hating the notion of being single, or people having pity for single folks because they must be lonely. Or people who assume that being in love, especially marriage, is really more miserable than couples want you to believe, and so on. It’s time to stop the egregious BS.

You know what this really tells me about people? We can all be fragile narcissists at times (who have more problems than solutions) because we’re so busy talking over each other and not listening. Before overreacting, perhaps the relationship we should truly be considering is the one with ourselves.

I’m not an expert. I just live my life. I’m still learning and I’m okay with that. Everything I know about relationships is from observation, trial, error and straight-up common sense, which judging from the hoards of insecure people who follow false gurus isn’t very common. (Should we call it personal sense, then?)

This rant was inspired by a recent post inquiring whether Black women should consider dating bisexual men in order to expand their dating pools. I wish I could hand-deliver a Homie D. Clown bop to the person who wrote it, or to any of these types of blogs, and even the blogs that respond to it. Then again, I guess I’m no better because I’m addressing it.  

Anyway, consider these three things the next time you’re touched by relationship talk:

1. Is the person who wrote/said it smart and rational or just being a jackass for attention?

I’m willing to infer based on unscientific observation that 80% of the people who put that crap out into the universe would fall into the jackass category. But guess what? They do it because it gets numbers. For every “Black Women Need to [Fill in the Blank]” post, about 50 more rebuttals go up, and they all come across as defensive… which cancels out the discussion. And for every blanket statement about anything, i.e., “There are no good men in the world,” etc., there’s a person who wrote it that probably just needs a good therapist, a new thought process and a hug.

2. How secure are you?

If something speaks to your soul, don’t get combative. Figure out why it matters and make peace, especially if what you’re reacting to is jackass wisdom (see number one).  Why did it make you angry? Why did it hurt your feelings? Don’t give that much energy to other people, especially those who make uninformed or biased general statements. It’s not worth it. Trust me, I know this from experience.

3. Are you willfully close-minded?

In terms of communication, arguments are rarely about who’s right and who’s wrong, but that’s what they always turn into, overlooking the real issue. Opinions are personal and based on individual experiences. If something someone says doesn’t work for you, then so be it. Skip the dogma dramatics, because you can’t get someone to see something they don’t want to. Perspectives change and evolve when people allow them to. But until then, if someone wants to live in a bitter, delusional (or even happy, optimistic) bubble, there’s not much even Jesus can do.

That’s all I got, but from now on I’m tuning out the “experts” and opting for more realistic and balanced discussions. I prefer following people who share wisdom logically, and not from rationale that they pulled from the voices in their heads.

Are you sick of trite relationship talk that goes nowhere? How can we develop better communication with each other? Sound off below!

Mr. and Mrs. Rocque are the couple formerly known as Anslem Samuel and Starrene Rhett, Chicago-based journalists who found love in between bylines. Follow the newlyweds’ musings of a marriage in progress here, on Twitter and via their joint blog.