Can I Buy You A Drink?

Photo by D. Sharon Pruitt

In 2007 auto-tune extraordinaire, T-Pain, had the clubs, radios and bars rocking to his commercial smash hit, “Buy You A Drink”.  It was an extremely catchy title and beat but if you listen to the lyrics and get the premise of the song, you’ll understand just WHY I’m about to tell you that it’s NOT a good idea to let him BUY YOU A DRINK!  In case you are not familiar with the song, at the end of this post will be a clip of the song along with the lyrics.

Initial Meeting

How many times have you been out somewhere and you had a “chance encounter” with a seemingly nice guy? He stops you and strikes up a conversation and you seem interested so you decide to exchange numbers.  You get home sort of excited to hear from him and debate the age-old question, “Should I call him or should I wait for him to call me?”  Either way, a first conversation takes place between the two of you.  During the first conversation, after you get all of the particulars out of the way regarding careers, cars, relationship status and general time-wasting rhetoric, he suggests that you two get together for a date and his first suggestion is, “LET’S GET TOGETHER FOR DRINKS”.  Well since he seems so interesting and just talking to him gives you butterflies, you quickly accept his offer without hesitation.  But WAIT, why did he just suggest drinks and not dinner or a movie?  Here is where you have to be careful about his motives and the potential disastrous effect that this could have on your first “date” with him.

Having drinks on a first date can be innocent fun but it also has the potential to go very wrong.  Believe it or not, men like to test their limits with women to see how far we will let them go and to see what type of woman they are dealing with.  BEWARE, if on this first date, he seems too comfortable with you drinking shot after shot, multiple glasses of wine or hard liquor or he keeps pushing you to do so.  He may be offering you drinks so that you will release your inhibitions (as most people do when they drink) and he can get you to be more flirtatious with him, more forthcoming with information, more ambitious and even open to sleeping with him on the first date.  Some women might ask, “What’s wrong with that, we’re both consenting adults?”  Well I can tell you that most men, when asked, will tell you that contrary to what you might think, they really don’t respect you in the morning after sex on the first date.  I know you THINK they do, but they DON’T, even if they’ve lied to you and said they did!  They will most likely place you in what my husband often refers to as “Category C”, which is no room for upgrading to a girlfriend or eventual wife status (Category B and A respectively) but they WILL call you for sex again.  Also, if you are a “heavy drinker” or someone who likes to drink to get wasted, THE FIRST DATE is NOT the time for that.  If his motives were purely innocent and he just thought that you two could go somewhere to talk and get to know each other better over a FEW drinks, then you will RUIN a good night by getting tipsy and becoming too talkative or throwing up!  He will most likely think you have a drinking problem, consider you unattractive and will NEVER call you again.  Getting wasted on a first date is NOT COOL!

In The Club

When women go to the club, we all pretty much have the same rituals.  The first thing we do when we walk in is survey the room to see whose in there and then we hit the bar.  The bar is usually crowded with men ordering multiple drinks; one for them and one for a lady standing by the bar or sitting on the bar stool waiting patiently for that free drink.  Ladies usually stay close to the bar at a club for two reasons: 1)that’s where the seats are because we can’t stand too long in our 2-hour shoes and 2)we know free drinks will be coming.  The problem is that these FREE DRINKS come with a PRICE!  Now that you’ve accepted that FREE drink from the dude with the gold tooth, tight shirt and the gold rope chain with the Mercedes-Benz medallion on it, you are almost obligated to PAY attention to him for as long as you can stomach his conversation or until someone saves you.  He will most likely follow you around the club all night and ask for dance after dance until your run out of excuses or show him a bleeding toenail to prove that your feet don’t work.  The other “hot guy” who bought you a drink and that you don’t mind talking to and dancing with all night, will inevitably make references to “hooking up” before the night is over.  He has it somewhere in the back of his mind that you OWE him what’s under your tight-fitting dress for that cheap liquor that he just bought.  Men don’t buy drinks in the club for sport, they buy drinks to see whose coming home with them at the end of the night.

If you find yourself going home with the “hot guy” at the end of the night from the club because you are a little tipsy and he whispered something really appealing in your ear, BEWARE! He might just bring friends with him (rape, HIV, danger, etc.)! Women at clubs are prime targets for kidnapping, rape and murder because when you are intoxicated, you don’t have all of your faculties to make good decisions.  Hopefully you have friends who will not allow you to leave the club with a virtual stranger in that state (See Natalie Holloway).  Even going to a strange man’s house as a group is not even safe because men can easily overpower women and you all don’t know what you are getting yourselves into.  Even if nothing dangerous happens to you by going home with the “hot guy” from the club, you don’t even KNOW him and you don’t EVER want to wake up looking over and thinking, “Who the BLEEP is this, where am I and what happened?” Now you have to take that walk of shame to your car trying to piece together the events of the night feeling hung over and used!

When making the decision to accept a drink invitation whether or not it’s a first date or at the club, there are a few things to consider:

  1. Don’t drink BEYOND your tolerance level.  If you have one drink and begin feeling buzzed or tipsy, STOP HERE! You want to make a good impression and not turn him off before he’s even gotten to know you.
  2. Don’t make any MAJOR life decisions that you’ll regret later while you are drinking.
  3. At the club, when accepting a drink from a stranger, GO WITH HIM to the bar and let the bartender put the drink in YOUR hand because date rape drugs are REAL ladies.

When it’s all said and done, ladies, PLEASE DRINK RESPONSIBLY!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHcLWdDAo_0] [polldaddy poll=5284781]

The Problem With Superwoman

Ladies, do you sometimes feel like you have a “super suit” underneath your neatly pressed business suit or your pajamas?  As a strong independent woman, I think we ALL do.  We are “Super Women” by birth right, but it takes a lot to be a “SUPERWOMAN”.  What’s the difference you ask? Women are born with super powers because our pelvis expands to birth children, we have telepathic hearing to know when somebody is talking about us or our kids are sneaking around when they are supposed to be napping and we have eyes in the back of our heads to keep up with EVERYTHING going on in a room behind us. All of these things make us SUPER as women but a SUPERWOMAN is somebody who runs around doing EVERYTHING for EVERYBODY on two hours of sleep, very independent and highly motivated to succeed in all that she does.  There are 3 basic types of a SuperWoman: SuperMom, SuperIndependent and SuperWorker.  Some women can be all three or a combination of the three.

SUPERMOM

A SuperMom is usually a mother who gets up with the kids early in the morning, takes them to school or daycare, then either goes to work if she has a full-time job or proceeds to cook and clean the house until she picks the kids up from school or daycare.  After doing all of this, she may take the kids to dance, gymnastics, soccer, basketball or baseball practice, then takes the kids home to feed them the dinner that she home cooked.  After dinner she usually gives them a bath, reads them a story and puts them to bed.  Where is the dad in all of this you ask? He’s probably there watching tv, on the internet or even at work.  He may help out on one or two of these tasks but more than likely SUPERMOM has a system and she wants to do it herself.  Perhaps dad is not even involved and SuperMom is TRULY alone at home with the kids and HAS to perform all of these tasks herself.

What’s the problem with SuperMom? SuperMom will get burnt out but NEVER tell anyone or really ask for help.  She believes that in order for things to get done, SHE MUST do them herself.  She believes that the kids are used to HER system of doing things and if someone else steps in, it won’t be the same.  She believes that she is the only nurturer and that dad will not be as effective.  SuperMom has probably mentioned this to her husband/boyfriend that she needs a break and he pretended to understand but he really didn’t make a concerted effort to help her to relieve any of her stress because he SUBSCRIBED to her “SUPER” persona and felt that she could HANDLE it ALL ON HER OWN.

As a mother, you have to realize that you can’t do it all by yourself and that you really do need help and a break.  Consider sharing some of the parental responsibilities and if your husband or boyfriend doesn’t step in automatically, IMPRESS upon him the importance of HIS role and responsibility and show him that YOUR CAREER, if you have one, is JUST as important as his and if you don’t, that your SANITY is just as important as his.

SUPERINDEPENDENT

Destiny’s Child used to have a hit song called, “Independent Women” and here are some of the lyrics:

Question: Tell me what you think about me
I buy my own diamonds and I buy my own rings
Only ring your cell-y when I’m feelin lonely
When it’s all over please get up and leave
Question: Tell me how you feel about this
Try to control me boy you get dismissed
Pay my own fun, oh and I pay my own bills
Always 50/50 in relationships

The shoes on my feet
I’ve bought it
The clothes I’m wearing
I’ve bought it
The rock I’m rockin’
I’ve bought it
‘Cause I depend on me
If I wanted the watch you’re wearin’
I’ll buy it
The house I live in
I’ve bought it
The car I’m driving
I’ve bought it
I depend on me

This is the story of the SUPERINDEPENDENT! She’ll have a great job, her own place and a great life, so why do she need anything that a man has to offer? A man to her is just a compliment and not a necessity.  When she is out at the club or a restaurant with her girlfriends socializing and a guy walks up to her and extends his hand to introduce himself and starts to converse about his job, car, etc., the first thing going through her mind is, “yeah, yeah yeah, who cares.”  She is not impressed by anything that a guy has or has to offer because SHE HAS EVERYTHING.  She won’t mind a few meals, drinks, laughs and GREAT SEX but she won’t really need him for much else.  When he sends her flowers at work, she’ll act unimpressed because face it, SHE HATES FLOWERS.  When he buys her expensive gifts for special occasions or just because, she isn’t really moved and either throws it in the junk jewelry drawer, tosses it to the side or cracks a half-smile to show how pleased she is.  When her car breaks down or the sink in her house, she’ll call a professional or her DAD.  She’d rather wait for a cab or drown in knee-deep water before calling a man who she is seeing because, what can HE really do?

What’s the problem with SuperIndependent?  She is sort of self-absorbed and constantly alone.  Most of these women are driving men away with their nasty attitude towards EVERYTHING that a man has to offer.  They have never felt a deep connection with anyone or very few people because they are operating on the “I don’t need a man” premise.  She is quick to dismiss a man when things aren’t going her way.  Essentially, she is a spoiled brat!  Her father probably spoiled her with everything that she wanted or she may have worked very hard to spoil herself as an adult.

No matter how much you have and can do for yourself, you are still going to NEED somebody for something and the main thing is INTIMACY!  Remember, sex and intimacy are TWO VERY DIFFERENT things.  Sex is surface, intimacy is a DEEP connection to one’s soul.  If you carry this SUPER independent attitude into a serious relationship, it could backfire.  Men want to KNOW that you need them from the start and that they are not just some “add-on” to YOUR lifestyle.  You have to show your appreciation for what he can offer even if you aren’t that excited about it in the beginning because when you really need him, he will flake because he’ll feel like you won’t appreciate it anyway.  If you are spending the night as his house and planning to go to work from there and realize that you’ve forgotten your debit card and he offers you a $20 bill to pay for lunch, ACCEPT IT and say thanks.  DON’T say, “No thanks, I’ll just drive back across town and go home to get my debit card.”  That will just make him think you are rejecting his help.  If he buys you the SAME pair of Tiffany earrings that you already own, accept them and wear them occasionally when you are with him so he sees that you appreciate his gift (re-gift the other pair a friend or family member).  If your car breaks down, call a professional and then call him for a ride and let HIM reject you because he’s busy, at least he’ll feel like you needed him.

SUPERWORKER

SuperWorker is usually the hardest working person at the job or in an organization.  She could be the boss, the owner or a very dependable employee.  She is probably someone who people generally can’t stand because she tries to do everything.  She has a hard time delegating and working in groups because she likes to be in charge of projects and doing things herself.  Much like SuperMom, she feels that if she isn’t doing it herself, it’s not going to get done correctly.  She will multi-task and take on several projects at once and often take work home because she is up against a deadline.  People will constantly call on her for her perceived expertise and because is probably known as the person who can FIX just about anything.

What’s the problem with SuperWorker? She is secretly stressed out and burnt out.  She probably works late a lot and when she gets home from work or meetings, she has no time for the family and no time for intimacy with her mate.  Her mind is usually running a mile a minute about upcoming projects and deadlines that she can barely sleep.  One of the biggest issues is that she doesn’t know how to turn this off with her mate when she comes home. She is essentially transferring her stress to her mate.   She probably bosses him around, takes control over everything and treats him like an employee at her job. This is bad for relationships.  She also probably doesn’t even realize that she doesn’t really have a life.  She really doesn’t even have friends that aren’t connected to work or an organization that she belongs to because she has no time for friends.

SuperWorkers, you have to realize that life is too short to throw yourself into work all of the time.  This will send you to early grave from stress and anxiety.  You will also lose your family or your ability to start one.  Your kids will need you, your mate will need you and if you are single, YOU’LL NEVER MEET ANYONE!  You have to learn that it’s okay to SAY NO! It’s okay to scale back projects and delegate some things.  Stop being the “on call” expert in everything at work and let people solve their own issues or just give them a little push and let them take it the rest of the way.  By all means, if you are the bossy type at home, STOP IT! You will lose your man! Believe me, you’ll have a piece of mind, better relationships and more FREE TIME!

There is nothing wrong with being a SUPERWOMAN but you have to know when to PUT YOUR CAPE AWAY.  A final note to SUPERWOMAN: As my best friend so eloquently put it: “If you ACT like you can do everything, then you’ll end up DOING everything!  Rest your capes occasionally and let SOMEBODY ELSE do it for you!

The Home Invasion

Picture this, your leasing agent hands you a set of shiny silver or gold keys to your very first house or apartment that you don’t have to share with your parents or a roommate? The feeling of euphoria that you are experiencing right now as you walk around the house testing out all of the new gadgets and walking in and out of YOUR VERY OWN walk-in closet that’s fully equipped with a closet organizer, is overwhelming. After taking another personal tour of your home, you lay on the couch with your hands clasped behind your head, your eyes closed and take in all of the foreign noises that you weren’t accustomed to hearing yet in this new place. Suddenly you realize just how loud the crickets are in this neighborhood. Laying there, you have two thoughts going through your mind, “Who’s going to help me unpack these boxes?” and “Where is the nearest pizza delivery place?” Days go by with friends and family coming by to help you unpack and decorate. Your boyfriend comes over almost daily to make sure that you are safe and to see if you needed anything, because after all, this is a NEW PLACE and void of other people besides you and the crickets.

After several weeks of getting things situated in your house JUST the way you want them and enjoying being able to run around the house doing naked dances in the mirror (what, we’ve all done it), you go into the bathroom to take a hot shower and notice the extra toothbrush in your toothbrush holder. You don’t think anything of it because your boyfriend has been staying over pretty frequently. After you take your shower, you go into that wonderful walk-in closet and notice two pair of oversized Gap jeans on hangers next to your clothes and a pair of blue Nike running shoes in the corner. Hold on, these aren’t yours, but your boyfriend must have left them there by accident. You grab your clothes, start to iron and then realize that you needed your cellphone car charger before running out of the door so you start to walk towards your nightstand and trip over a pair of shower shoes that are a man-sized 9. Finally, reaching for the drawer of your night stand on the side that HE usually sleeps on, you pull it out and notice that there are several pairs of boxer shorts in the drawer. OH NO! You begin to panic, start to sweat and realize, you’ve just been a victim of a HOME INVASION!

What is a home invasion?

A “Home Invasion” is when single people who live alone end up “accidentally” living with their significant other. The significant other slowly starts to move things in and getting you used to seeing their personal items. You don’t think anything of the first few items because they are common items such as a toothbrush, a change of clothes or some underwear; you know, things they can easily take home. The next thing you know, they have their ENTIRE wardrobe in your closet, cd’s, a laptop and special dishes in the sink in YOUR place where THEY aren’t paying ANY rent! Home invasions are ALL too common with single ladies with their own apartment or house that is dating a guy who lives with a roommate or is in a break-up situation with another “live-in” ex. You spend so much time with your boyfriend, going out, cooking him dinner at home in YOUR new digs and hosting sports parties together that you haven’t realized that he hasn’t been to HIS house in MONTHS. You probably hate to visit his house because he has a roommate, which is why he spends so much time at your place. The other thing is that frankly, MEN don’t live like women. Women are usually more conscious of how things are decorated, cleaned and the amount of privacy they are getting. Men usually have a MAN PAD that smells like the gym, with dirty dishes in the sink, unmatched furniture, a pool table in the dining room and constant drop-in company. Another SURE way of getting home invaded, is GIVING HIM A KEY. You may do this unconsciously because you need him to run over and feed the dog, water your plants or because you needed someone to meet the cable guy and he just happened to be off that day. The next thing you know, he’s coming in your apartment ALL OF THE TIME for ANY reason with that same key.

Men usually don’t fall victim to the home invasion very easily because they are LESS likely to ALLOW you to leave ANYTHING at their house. Try leaving some Dove body wash in his shower. I bet the next time you are over there, it is hidden away underneath the cabinet behind the cleaning products and you have to ASK for it the next time you want to use it because you can’t find it. God forbid you try leaving something that he can’t easily hide, like a pair of shoes. I guarantee you that before you get the keys in the ignition to your car, he is tapping on your driver’s side window, out of breath from running and saying, “Baby, you left these, I thought you might need them.” The guy that is a PRIME target for a home invasion by a woman is the guy that lives alone in a “comfortable” bachelor pad. His house or apartment will have all of the creature comforts of home. When you walk in, it smells like scented candles, there is beautiful plush furniture and carpet, lavish artwork on the walls, matching dishes in the cabinet and a flat screen tv with surround sound above the fireplace. Yes all of this sounds great if you are a bachelor BUT it also invites women to take up residence in YOUR place because it feels like home. I’m not saying DON’T live like this, but be prepared NOT to live ALONE like this for long because as soon as she takes her shoes off that first night and steps on that plush carpet, her clothes will be moving in next!

How to Avoid the Home Invasion?

If you aren’t ready to “accidentally” live with someone then there are a few things that you need to AVOID doing.

  1. Don’t allow your significant other to spend EVERY DAY at YOUR place. You need to alternate houses even if you don’t like their roommate. If the place that they live in is too unbearable to spend the night in, just part ways at the end of some of your dates and get used to sleeping alone in YOUR bed once in a while.
  2. Don’t allow them to leave things at your place that will collect over time and become ALL of their worldly possessions. If they leave a toothbrush that’s okay but if they start bringing their laundry over to do at your place and NEVER take it home, BEWARE, they’re trying to move in.
  3. Don’t give them a key to your place because that is an OPEN invitation to let them come and go as they please (and to move stuff in while you’re at work). If you have to give them a key for a specific reason, MAKE UP A STORY to get it back IMMEDIATELY. Tell them that your mother is coming over and you need to give it to her to get in.
  4. Don’t come immediately to the rescue by offering your apartment for a short time if they have a fight with their roommate that ends up with them having to “move out”. Run to the grocery store and grab all of the “Apartment Guides” off of the shelves and bookmark EVERY apartment finder website there is, because your way of showing support is to FIND THEM A NEW APARTMENT IMMEDIATELY!
  5. Be on the look out for that person with the pattern of living with people. If they are going from one relationship to the next and they are ALWAYS living with the person, they are basically a user who is looking to get a free ride with YOU until they can take up residence with the next sucker who will pay their way!

Basically ladies and gentleman, don’t be afraid to look them straight in the eye and say, “I LOVE YOU, YOU DON’T HAVE TO GO HOME, BUT YOU HAVE TO GET THE HELL OUT OF HERE! Then follow that up with a kiss and send them on their way!