She’s Your Partner, Not Your Parent
So brotha, let’s start off with a story…
Here I am already feeling larger than life and am only in my second year of college. I walk through the athletic corridor which carries a foul odor. It’s a musty stench of men reminiscent to a bag of onions on the hottest day of the year.
The musk doesn’t scare me away, but inner conflict is rising in me, so I tell myself, “you can do it!”
“No! If you do it she’ll be mad at you. You can’t leave her and your little man to fend alone.”
In the moment, I submit to the latter voice but for some reason my feet still tread. I reached the threshold of the athletic center, walked outside where the sun greeted me. At that point I was starting to become affected, nevertheless the sun was on me and it was my time to shine! Consequences? I’ll handle that when I get home. I thought to myself. After walking a few blocks, I finally reached my destination. Inside the office a receptionist handed me the paperwork. I sat. I signed. I sighed. I left. Now the big part.
I pulled up in the driveway where the door was open. Terrified I walked up the porch stairs. Next, I peeked through the screen hoping she had a good day at work? I could feel my heart pumping. It was as though it would burst through my chest. This was my moment. I opened the door. And prepared myself to tell her the life decision I’ve made. How would she respond? angrily? Will she think I didn’t love her? Am I selfish for wanting to do this and not considering what she needs from me? Should we have discussed it first? I am the man of this household yet I’m not sure she’ll support me. This mental anguish is driving me insane! I had to say something. I had to get some balls! So out it goes…, “Ma?!”
A mother finds instinctive pleasure in parenting her child. She is compelled to express physical affection by holding her baby in her arms, kissing her son on the forehead, smelling his stringy baby hair, and feeling the softness of her baby’s bottom. The older he gets the more passionately intimate (in a nonsexual way) she is. Her son becomes less fragile, so she hugs him tighter, and he hugs her back. A mother to a mama’s boy hopes the relationship between her and her boy grow closer. Her working toward that goal is never-ending.
When the time comes that he matures and wants to be more independent, mom has not learned to let go. She wants to keep him as her little baby, so she’ll do anything she can to keep their relationship how she wants it. She will make him feel like he is the man in her life, before he figures out how to be a man. She commits what some therapists call emotional incest.
These summations equate to a man being what I call the “Partner”. He is a type of mama’s boy who instead of partnership, seeks parenting. But don’t judge this man. He isn’t consciously looking at every woman like a mother. It’s just the idea of ‘I’ll do it for you’ was downloaded into this man, instead of ‘do it for yourself’.
But there’s hope… a strategy. And it’s simple. Be a man of action. He is to reserve every bit of himself for his partner keeping in mind that his mother will always be an option to learn from but not the number one go to. And voila his woman shows appreciation to him because of his prioritizing her as a partner! Sure, his mother won’t be happy, but in time she’ll learn to get used to his new way of living and being… but not without resistance. The Partner’s ride to independence will be as smooth as a cowboy riding a bronco in the rodeo. Personally brotha, I’d rather be perceived as a reckless cowboy to my mother, than a side show clown to my lady.
For going on two decades Shareef has been a licensed/ordained minister. He’s worked with youth since he was a teen, and either started or joined many effective youth initiatives in his hometown, Buffalo NY. His current focus has been empowering men by showing them methods which prevent reckless relationship decisions, and encouraging women by giving them tools which will prevent them from owning resentment. He is also a co-star on the YouTube family channel “All Day With The Alis”. Where they live a full disclosure husband and wife life with children!