“Have some self-respect!” As a teenager, my momma made sure that I understood what was expected of me and high on the list was a load of self-respect! Self-respect is a virtue that has gone MIA and nowhere is that more obvious than on our television screens. I have said before that I am a reality show junkie but the last few shows have been watched more to dissect what would possess someone to go on national television and act in a way that could only be described as someone who lacks any “Home Training!”
It wasn’t until after I grew up and left my mother’s house that I understood how important having respect for yourself is and it wasn’t until I left that I realized that what I had been given was not the norm. The workplace, where people from all walks of life come together in the name of making money, was where I first discovered how lucky I was to have had a mother who took the time to train me and to tell me how I should and shouldn’t act. I was amazed at how many times I talked to people who had never been told that it wasn’t normal to run around saying everything that came to their mind and it wasn’t o.k. to act like they did at home in public…it just wasn’t o.k.!
So when I watched shows like Love & Hip Hop and the Real Housewives of (Insert city) I sat there in complete amazement at how willing these women were to live without filter. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you need to let someone have it and I understand that…hell I am a pro at that but even when I have found myself in situations where I have deemed it necessary to “Let a B*%&# know”, it has never been just because she was breathing or because I didn’t agree with her position. It hasn’t even been when someone has said they didn’t like me…so what…there is no rule that says someone has to like you just because you want to be liked and there is no rule that says you have to like everyone. The only rule that
is used to be universal is the rule of respect…that is until now.
The new normal makes me and my way of thinking look antiquated. Somehow those of us who were raised to act like ladies and to treat ourselves and others with respect, even if you didn’t like them, have been replaced with a new breed (I won’t say generation because some of these women are older than me) of woman and this woman has no problem showing her ass, acting irrationally and literally walking around throwing tantrums like a toddler.
The first time I watched Basketball Wives, I sat there in complete amazement and when the show ended, I sat for a second and then said–“WOW“…there was nothing else that I could say and by the second season, I found it hard to sit and finish a whole episode!
From there, as everyone knows, the shows and the antics went down hill fast and for those of us sitting on the sidelines, we couldn’t believe that this was real. These women acted like wild banshee’s and found nothing wrong with it and what I found most interesting was that they would look at you like you were crazy if you dared tell them that acting this way was an issue.
The best thing that has come from these shows is a teaching moment for the rest of us. While I do not allow my 13 year old to watch these shows, what I have learned is how much I have to step my game up because these grown women start out as little girls and junior high school is their training ground so antiquated or not, I am resolved to teach her how to carry herself and have some self-respect!
My momma has always said, “God can take care of (insert wrong doer) better than I can…and when he does…I feel sorry for ’em.” When I was young, I used to look at her and think, “UGH” and role my eyes (when she wasn’t looking). This was always said when I wanted to go off on someone who I felt had wronged me. I used to be that person who would let you have it and tell you exactly how I felt, especially when I was in my early 20’s. That is how I became known as the “Militant One” in my family.
I really felt (and still do) that any injustice should be stopped and if someone didn’t say something, I automatically felt it should be me. Obviously, this got me in a lot of trouble and my mother had to do a lot of talking to get me to understand that every battle didn’t need to be fought by me. Some battles are bigger than me and should be left to God and that was a hard lesson to learn but as I got older, I realized you can’t fight all the time or you will be fighting all the time and so I began to let go and I started let God. Once I let go, I started to realize that in due time, the wrong doer had their house of cards fall apart and it was done in a way that I never could have fathomed.
We are watching that play out with Evelyn Lozada. For the last 2 years, viewers of VH1’s Basketball Wives have watched as she bullied many of her castmates and even her former best friend. She has hopped over tables, thrown wine bottles and confessed to sleeping with fellow cast member, Tami Roman’s, ex-husband (while they were still married) and then had the audacity to tell Tami that she was a “non-muthafuckin’ factor”…who does that? Evelyn disrespected everyone including herself and would dare you to say something so when she began dating Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson, we all thought, “this is a match made in Heaven”…and it was.
In Chad, Evelyn met her match. She couldn’t bully him (she tried) and since she couldn’t bully him she chose to join him. She allowed everything she was against (I know…amazing that she stood for something) to go on in her relationship all in the name of “love” and now she wants to press charges. An injustice has happened to her and someone should pay! Wait…an injustice has occurred and she wants someone to pay? Did we all hear that right? Yes we did.
Oh the irony! I don’t think one person could have imagined that this relationship would unravel the way it did, in front of the world and God. Don’t get me wrong, we knew it was going to unravel but I don’t know one person who thought it would play out the way it did and in such grand fashion. For those us who saw any of her show, the first question was always, ” why isn’t anybody stopping her?” Well, she has been stopped now.
I don’t think we are going to be seeing the villainous Evelyn Lozada for sometime. I think her days of beating up women (it was cute when she did it) and putting raw dolphin bait in another persons room (because she didn’t like them) are over. So for all of you who sat there in awe of her antics like I did and wondered how she was going to be stopped, we just witnessed what my momma always said and I do feel a little sorry for her.
The first time I heard my friend say, “…Like Shorty always says (that is her mothers nickname), You don’t have to follow a bad idea all the way through”, I knew it was a classic. No truer words have been spoken and I don’t know why more people don’t realize that there is always another option. Just because a situation is playing out a certain way doesn’t mean you have to see it through until its disastrous end and there has been no better example of this than the recent domestic violence arrest of Chad formerly “Ochocinco” Johnson and his wife, BasketBall Wives “star”, Evelyn Lozada.
The union of these two people ended before it began and if you ever watched any of the show, Basketball Wives, then you know that this relationship was a classic example of “You don’t have to follow a bad idea all the way through,” so when I read this morning that he had been arrested for head-butting Evelyn, I was not at all shocked. Not to say that I thought he would abuse her but I knew that there would be some public incident that would lead to this kind of drama.
When you look back on all of the signs that pointed to the only ending possible, you can count the amount of “bad ideas” that were visible to everyone, including them, that were blatantly ignored. There was the “bad idea” to appear on national television in lingerie and intimate that you had sex on the first date, it was a bad idea to get engaged to someone you didn’t know and then lambast your friend because she didn’t agree with the situation you put yourself in, it was a bad idea to have a threesome and then make it public knowledge and it was a bad idea to believe that after having set no real boundaries in your relationship, you believed that he would honor you as his wife when you played the role of his ho, for lack of a better word.
A woman, cannot get upset with a man for actions that were previously overlooked and therefore deemed acceptable and then expect him to change just because he married you, it doesn’t work that way. Whatever you accepted before you became man and wife will continue and there is no one to blame but yourself. Evelyn didn’t deserve to get hurt, although some might argue that there is a direct correlation between her actions on Basketball Wives and the situation she finds herself in now, however, she set herself up and convinced herself that what she (and we) saw while they were dating wasn’t going to cross-over into her marriage.
It has always bothered me when women play themselves and allow themselves to be treated any other way than with respect. I have been guilty of allowing a man to get away with a certain amount of disrespect but it didn’t take me long to realize that I wasn’t going to live like that non-sense was normal for the rest of my life and if for no one else, I had an obligation to make sure that for the sake of my daughter, I didn’t allow her to become accustomed to being mistreated by anyone be they man or woman.
Finding receipts for condoms, which is what has been reported, would upset any woman but at some point, knowing the kind of man he told you he was on national t.v., can you really be shocked and upset when this is how the relationship was set up from the start? When you made a conscious decision to ignore every sign that told you to run the other direction, the only person you can honestly blame is yourself. If you had taken the time to sit back and assess whether or not it would be a bad idea to get involved with someone who is a self-described narcissist, then maybe you wouldn’t have made the decision to follow the idea all the way through.