I feel like outside forces are out to get my relationship. I know I sound a little crazy, but I can’t stand around and let his friends and family ruin what I hold dear. Has this ever happened to you?
—Crazy In Love
Dear Crazy In Love,
Let me tell you about a time when I nearly lost my mind, We could have had it all like Adele but frustrations from his friends and family had our relationship rolling in some deep shit. Ray and I have been dating for months. We were at the phase of an introduction to friends and family.
There are elements within a courtship that can be toxic. Poisonous prattle from a coterie of clowns could turn a pair of smiles upside down. What about his friends? What about them? Fuck them. I wasn’t interested. Ray promoted our relationship to anyone who would listen. Should I he subject me to interviews with people who do know me?
The friends and family of the person you’re dating could taint even the healthiest relationship.
Sneaking Behind His Grandma Back
Ray lived with his homophobic grandmother, who didn’t like me. She thought I was a male prostitute and banned me from the house!
It never failed, every time we headed to his place after an outing, she was always there waiting.
“Who downstairs?” She asked.
“What are you talking bout ma?” He asked.
“Boy, don’t play stupid. You know exactly what I’m talkin bout.” She said.
“Ma you tripping,” he said. Ain’t nobody downstairs.”
He closed the door behind him, as I remained hidden in the hallway like a stray cat. Just when I thought, we got caught. The door opened, and he whispered down for me to come upstairs. I rushed in on my tippy toes to the top level. Sometimes it was exciting to be sneaking around like a mistress in the middle of the night. Other times exhausted me. Another step in an already endless process just so we can sleep together. Make no mistake this was no late night snack, just rest. Besides, sometimes rest was better than sex.
A Bipolar Promoter Promoting Lies
His friend Tony, a bipolar club promoter, who bossed around his staff as if they were slaves. With an ego bigger that was he possessed inside his pants. Tony went around town claiming that he owned Secrets. That couldn’t be further from the truth. The uninitiated fell for that line quicker than, “Let me just put the head in.” He had the audacity to call my guy’s phone. Ray passed it over to me.
“Hello,” I said.
“Why you doing my friend dirty?” He asked.
“Excuse me,” I said.
“You heard me. I hear that Ray is paying for everything. And you ain’t tryna pay for nothing. I told him he should just let you go,” he said.
“Are you drunk?” I asked.
“No,” he said.
“Then what is your excuse?” I asked.
“Let’s get one thing straight. I’m neither dripping in diamonds nor do I have dishes full of drugs. He is not taking care of me. Got it? Great,” I said.
I passed Ray back his phone. How dare he judge my relationship? Why did he pass me the phone, hoping that Tony will set me straight? The L train ride to work that morning was awkward. I couldn’t believe that my man felt like I was using him. His meddling grandmother tried sabotaging our relationship and Tony was in cahoots.
A Childhood Friend Stuck
His former childhood friend from Atlanta, who visited the city for the holiday. Well, he spent most of his time in Queens—how fitting! Ray invited him to hang out with us all week. David had one of blandest personalities that I ever encountered. I likened it to a box of Cheerios: boring and lacked flavor. We had a showdown after the club at a deli.
“Ray I’m about to leave are you going to be okay going home?” he said.
“He’ll be fine,” I said.
“I’m not talking to you,” he said. “I’m talking to my friend.”
“But I’m telling you that my boyfriend will be fine. Go back to Atlanta where you came from!” I said.
“I’m not from Atlanta!” He said.
“Ok, Have fun in Queens!” I said.
I reached out to wave my finger at him, causing my iPhone to slip and shatter. I was pissed. I left this dumb bitch get under my skin. I wasn’t going to pull a Naomi Campbell. His friend judged me from the beginning. I’m not going to alter my personality for someone for a couple of days.
We led exhausting lives, comprised by conflict from his friends and family. Ray’s fast friendships formed at bars was at the core of my frustration, formulating judgments based on a fraction of what they saw. I did what I needed to save my relationship. I got down on all fours and fucked the pain away. And when drama reappeared I instituted a rinse and repeat formula.
Why was it too much of a challenge for something as simple as respect? Perhaps they did me a favor, I no longer have to deal with his cowardice and his family.
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