I read an article yesterday: “7 Signs You Might Not Make a Good Wife.” It was another to add to the expansive list of “Hey, Black Girl, This Is What’s Wrong With You and Why You’re Not Married” stories.
For anyone whose ever had a breakup, tried to blame the downfall on their partner, and then managed to discuss it with a level-headed friend, the clichéd advice you heard was probably something like: It takes two to tango. Yes, two. Count ’em — one, then two. That means you, and if you’re hetero, him, too. Which is why I don’t understand why there is so little dating/relationship material aimed at men. Even men who write about relationships dedicate most of their time to telling women how to be better women. What about the men?
Men can’t just be chilling while women are out here trying to transform themselves into what one of these 50-11 million articles says we should do to snag a may-ann. Not only is not fair, it’s guaranteeing relationships still won’t ever work. It takes two, remember? Two! One, then two.
Does anyone realize that if women en masse ever took all this advice, and collectively got all their ish together, there would still be a huge relationship problem? There’s not suddenly going to be a stampede to altars across America of mature, marriage-minded men springing up from the couch in somebody’s basement where they’ve been biding their time, hosting Madden tournaments or swilling copious amounts of cognac. The problems in relationships will still exist, will always exist, when only one half of the pair has been doing the work to make it better. Anyone currently in a relationship of any sort will tell you that’s not just a headache, but a recipe for imminent implosion. Sigh.
But I’m not here just to rant. Oh no. I’m here to help a brotha out, too. Allow me to offer “7 Signs a Man Won’t Make a Good Husband.” Share it with a man who needs to know.
1. Blames Women for Everything
Seventy-two percent of black kids are born out of wedlock. You’d swear women were getting themselves pregnant. The daddy who didn’t even offer to put a ring on it? He must have been run off by an independent women. No matter the subject — the economy, the melting ice caps, global warming — you can be counted on to find a way to tie it back to a woman (and her damn feminism). No woman in her right mind wants to come home to hear that crap. Please sign up for therapy. Now.
2. Is Emotionally Unavailable
I get it. Men are socialized to be stoic. No one’s asking you to bawl like a child when you’ve had a bad day at the office, but this whole “I’m just not going to talk/answer the phone; I’m going to drink myself into a stupor” and every time someone asks, “What’s wrong?” you lie and say, “Nothing” is pure-D BS. That, my friend, is a mismanagement of communication skills. Take some time to brood, and then learn how to open up to your partner without thinking it’s a sign of weakness.
3. Doesn’t Know How to Lead
Every Indian is not a chief, and every man is not a leader. Having a penis does not somehow grant you the specified skill set and mental capacity to know how to inspire others, i.e., lead. Leaders are not self-appointed and they’re not all talk. They are chosen by the people who believe in them because of their example and vision. If you have no followers, despite your proclamations that you are a leader, you’re no leader. You’re just the boy who cried, “Chief!”
4. Refers to Women as “Females”
This is an indication of either your lack of education or social grace. You are insulting half the population with this “female” talk, and you don’t even know it. You don’t deserve to have a wife if you can’t even recognize that an adult human with vagina is called a “woman.”
5. Is Obsessed With Looks
Lord knows, I love a good-looking man. I do, I do, I do, I do. But geez, a wide, broad back isn’t something to decide marriage material by any more than a fat *ss is. You have to have some intrinsic traits, too. You need some character if you expect a union to last even a little while. If you’re older than 25, contemplating major life decisions based on a woman’s dress size or her waist-to-hip ratio, boy, bye.
6. Thinks Women Are Supposed to Be Submissive
I know the Bible says it. But it’s been a month of Sundays since you saw the inside of a church, and while you can pull a quote out here or there, like most people, you’ve never read the Good Book. If you did, you’d know the verse about submission is about wives submitting to husbands and husbands submitting to God. If you don’t have a close personal relationship with the Lord — and yes, I want to see you in the church and tithing — don’t even mention submission.
7. Uses “Bitch” Synonymously With “Woman”
This doesn’t just apply for the rapper/block-hugger set. This is also the domain of so-called “good-ass men” with degrees, mortgages, and otherwise appropriate manners. No worthwhile woman is looking at you like a prize when you’re constantly dropping “b-bombs” to refer to “females.” We’re well aware if you say it about other women, then someday you’ll be saying it about us.