Love From the Other Side is a relationship blog geared at helping people find and maintain healthy, happy relationships. But ever so often I feel inclined to write a Perspective piece. Through these pieces I tell my story or give someone else a platform to tell their story. It is my hope that in sharing perspectives we increase our love and understanding for one another. If you enjoy this piece be sure to read more of the Perspective pieces linked at the end of this article.
When I was 8 years old my family moved from the all black Southside of Chicago to the all white South Suburbs. At age 8 I could not distinguish the difference between black and white. I had 1 or 2 white teachers at my school but because of the vast variety in shades of black I assumed these teachers were light skinned black people. It wasn’t until we moved to the all white suburbs that I discovered race. In the summertime white kids wanted to compare their suntanned arms to see if they’d caught up to my brown. Year round their tiny fingers spent time in my hair as they marveled over my course texture. Adults would at least ask, “Can I touch your hair?”. The thing that bothered me the most however was the critiquing of my speech. “Say car, say milk.” Or from the adults it was, “You speak so well” as my proper grammar exceeded their expectations of a child from the ghetto South side. My mother was a teacher, how was I supposed to speak? By 5th grade I’d learned to pronounce “milk” as “melk” and soften my hard r’s in words like “water” or “car”.
I’m Nora Nur from the relationship blog Love From the Other Side. I am honored to be a participant in the Women_Who_Empower_ challenge that has been running June 15, 2017 – June 30, 2017. For the past week or so the ladies in the challenge have been working toward personal development through goal setting, meditation, journaling, positive thought and so much more. If you haven’t yet joined the challenge go check it out on the Instagram page women_who_empower_. Today I was featured to discuss maintaining positive personal development while pursuing and/or maintaining a romantic relationship.
Below are 3 ideas to know and practice daily to help you do this:
#1 Happiness is not a “when event” – Be Happy Now
Sometimes we say to ourselves, “I’ll be happy when I have a healthy romantic relationship”, or “I’ll be happy with myself and feel beautiful when I lose 20 lbs”. The problem with this thinking is that the when event either never occurs or it occurs and we still don’t feel happy. Our happiness should not be conditional upon future events. If you aren’t happy single, then when the novelty of a new healthy relationship wears off you will go back to being unhappy. Likewise if you don’t feel beautiful and happy with yourself now, when the novelty of the new weight loss is gone you will go back to feeling discontent. Dig deeper. Find inner peace in the right now, and learn to love yourself and your life as it is right now.
This week’s Perspective Wednesday piece is a guest post from BeThatWoman from the Women’s Empowerment blog BeThatWoman.net.
Life after divorce can either be exciting or scary. It really depends. If you wanted the divorce, it may serve as a relief and an opportunity to start over. But if you were caught totally off guard you may feel devastated by the idea of having to date again. For me, it was a little of both. The reason for my divorce was that I got sick of the abuse. After the divorce a mixture of mental, emotional, and physical abuse left my self-esteem in the dumps. While I felt a sense of relief from getting away from that toxic marriage, I was also terrified and dreading having to put myself out there in the dating scene, especially with four kids.
I was given advice by several people to take at least a year to be by myself before I tried dating again. “You need to find yourself.” they would say. “I don’t want to wait. I have been through hell and I am ready to be loved. I want to meet someone who is going to treat me right and love and respect me like I deserve.” I would reply back.
Original Article by BeThatWoman: You can Master Your Current Level by Finding the Beauty in Your Now
I spent my twenties exhausted by Facebook comparisons, watching Facebook status’s change from single to in a relationship to engaged.
To make matters worse I worked as a wedding videographer filming wedding ceremonies and receptions every Friday and Saturday night. I spent the week with Facebook open in one window and my Final Cut Pro timeline in the other. It didn’t help that most of my editing happened in my childhood bedroom. In other words, I hadn’t yet reached enough financial stability to move out of my parents’ house. In short, Facebook was a butting reminder that I was losing at life. Relationship Envy: 5 Ways to Avoid it
I woke up with night sweats, disoriented. It took a moment to realize the walls weren’t blue, the bed wasn’t a twin. This wasn’t my high school bedroom. The man next to me wasn’t my high school boyfriend and my senior year wasn’t starting in September. My chest was so tight, each breath a struggle, my pulse racing. Did my mother know yet? Had I told her? I would miss the first month of my senior year. How would I pay for a baby sitter while I was at school? What if breastfeeding was difficult? Could I afford formula? My breathing must of woke him. “You’re okay”, he mumbled from his sleep, reaching over to hold me and baby. Confused I asked, “we have money? You’re happy? You want this baby?”. “Yes”, he mumbled pulling us closer. Continue reading
The first time I tried intercultural dating was in college. I dated a Nigerian. I remember the American black guys asking why I didn’t like black guys. I was confused. Wasn’t I dating a black guy?
The day of our college graduation two significant things happened. First, his parents flew in and stayed at the campus family guest house. His mom cooked a big Nigerian meal for everyone. All seven of the Nigerian girls on campus came over filling the kitchen with Yoruba and Pigeon banter as they helped his mother cook. I sat next to my friend Jenny, a blond haired blue eyed white girl, and her Indian boyfriend, another intercultural couple. We suffered through a shared plate of Nigerian food, as tears ran down our faces from the spices. I knew it was spicy when my Indian friend kept pushing the plate off on me. If he thought, it was spicy I didn’t stand a chance.
This week’s Perspective Wednesday piece is all about the money! Does it matter how much money your significant other makes. Ladies, does it matter if a man makes significantly less money than you? Would you date a guy who made less money? If so would you marry him, all other things considered? Men, does it matter to you how much money a woman makes? If a woman made more money than you would that be an issue? For this weeks article, I invited some readers to send in their anonymous answers. I’ve also included my response. Continue reading
This Perspective Wednesday’s Guest Post was written by Warren Oaks
When I was in preschool, and interacting for the first time with persons outside my immediate family, I realized something was different about my peers and I, something I couldn’t quite put my finger on. I knew that I was a girl, because my parents had told me so, but it just didn’t sync with…whatever it was that was going on inside of me. There were twins at the preschool, Luke and Mark, and I felt more like myself when they included me in their games and interactions. Something about being included with the boys felt right.
Whatever was different about me, I concluded that it needed to be hidden or corrected, so my childhood and teenage years were spent trying on different identities and personas in an attempt to find something that I felt comfortable in. I grew my hair to a ridiculously long length, tried to be “girly,” tried to be funny, tried to be vulgar, tried to be sullen, tried to be introverted. The closest I got to something that felt right was the “tomboy persona,” but for reasons I didn’t understand, it still just didn’t work.
What I did not know at the time was that I am a transsexual—a person whose body and associated gender role don’t synchronize with their sense of self. It wasn’t until late middle school or early high school that I was introduced to the concept, and then the identity shuffle became an exercise in deflecting any possible attention away from who I really was.
My senior year of high school I went to the ACT-SO art competition in Miami, Florida. I went as a regional winner for visual arts along with 10-15 other students from my high school and nearby schools and a few parent chaperones. We loaded a coach bus headed for the airport and before we took off, one of the parent chaperones suggested we bow our heads in prayer. I quietly bowed my head, praying it would be a generic prayer. “Lord Jesus Christ, our holy savior, we pray in your name, we pray that we arrive safely…..” Uncomfortable I lifted my head, dismissing myself from the prayer. As a Muslim, I don’t believe that Jesus (peace be upon him) is God or the son of God, and thus such a prayer opener made me highly uncomfortable. Later in the trip, a parent chaperone asked me what church I attended. When I told her I was Muslim, she asked offended, how it was possible that I didn’t “believe the lord Jesus Christ had died for my sins”, she then told 18 year old me, that I would “go to hell” if I didn’t come to accept this. At 18 I was soft spoken with a reverence for all adults. I didn’t know how to respond to such a statement so I didn’t respond at all. Continue reading