“Oh, I Think That I Found Myself A Cheerleader” Is My WTF Moment

Cheerleader. It has a catchy beat for sure. I often find myself tapping my thumbs on my steering wheel while listening to it on the radio.

But then I pause to consider the message. For some reason, it feels particularly heinous- a subtle form of narcissistic misogyny that instructs girls and women that they are tools or pawns to the ego of the man singing: If she knows her role, knows her place and remains subservient and responds to his every whim, she will be granted the ultimate reward- a ring.

Oh, I know what you’re thinking: Penny, what about all the rap songs about “hoes,” “bitches,” “sluts,” etc.?

Those messages are also insidious and overt “status” symbolism for the men rapping. They are usually sexually and physically degrading on their face. But rarely do these types of songs take the time they pinpoint and exploit the insecurities of young women in such a psychological fashion. Reading the lyrics really made me ponder the ridiculousness of this man’s message in 2015.

What do I mean by this? Consider the “Cheerleader” lyrics:

When I need motivation
My one solution is my queen
‘Cause she stay strong (Yeah yeah)-
She is always in my corner
Right there when I want her
All these other girls are tempting
But I’m empty when you’re gone
And they say

Do you need me?
Do you think I’m pretty?
Do I make you feel like cheating?
And I’m like no, not really cause

(Okay, so she’s strong because she knows about all these other women tempting him, but yet stays in his corner and plays her role to prop up his ego. Also notice the little insecurities of all the devious other women trying to get him to cheat. Apparently, he’s got to bat these women off with a stick!)

Oh I think that I found myself a cheerleader
She is always right there when I need her

Oh I think that I found myself a cheerleader
She is always right there when I need her

(She’s his cheerleader, building his ego, in her role and in her place.)

She walks like a model
She grants my wishes like a genie in a bottle (Yeah yeah)

(Objectifying, subservience and immediate response to his needs when he summons her).

‘Cause I’m the wizard of love
And I got the magic wand
All these other girls are tempting
But I’m empty when you’re gone
And they say

(So he’s so amazing in bed metaphorically and beyond, and although he’s thought about cheating enough to notice other women being “tempting,” he’s steadfast in his loyalty because she is there to fulfill his needs.)

Do you need me?
Do you think I’m pretty?
Do I make you feel like cheating?
And I’m like no, not really cause

Oh I think that I found myself a cheerleader
She is always right there when I need her

Oh I think that I found myself a cheerleader
She is always right there when I need her

She gives me love and affection
Baby did I mention, you’re the only girl for me
No I don’t need a next one
Mama loves you too, she thinks I made the right selection
Now all that’s left to do
Is just for me to pop the question

(Again, it’s a transaction. It’s what SHE can do for HIM. I mean, she is his cheerleader after all. Where’s the love? Just because she fulfills his immediate needs, that does not a marriage make).

Oh I think that I found myself a cheerleader
She is always right there when I need her

I’ll take the risk of sounding like a feminist. Hell, it’s in my bio so I’m going to embrace it. It would take years to analyze the misogyny of songs and the same degree in which women objectify men in their songs, so it’s an impossible task to do a comparison of one song to another.
My only purpose is realizing that this catchy, up-beat song that I find myself singing along with was my WTF moment as I paused to consider the message.
I think I’ll stick to simple, sappy love songs for awhile…

My Dad’s (Not So) Helpful, Stone Aged Dating Advice

Copyright 2015 Mumz the Word...

Copyright 2015 Mumz the Word…

During my weekly chat with my father, we somehow broached the topic of dating in this day-in-age. His “wisdom” never ceases to amaze me. He reminded me that I was nearing 30 and that studies show that the longer-in-the-tooth women are, combined with higher education, a career and a little one, the dating pool is narrowing by the day.

He offered some fun, little tid bits of “advice” cloaked in pseudo-scientific research:

  1. Studies show fewer men prefer marrying women with higher degrees and careers, much less women with higher degrees, careers AND a child from a previous relationship.
  2. Even when a woman is childless, her age narrows the dating pool because men tend to prefer younger women at the biological peak of their child bearing years.
  3. Women should resign themselves to having more children, even when they don’t want more, because biologically speaking, men don’t like to raise other men’s children unless they also have one of their own.
  4. Men as hunters, prefer being the breadwinners and feel threatened when their wife makes more which can cause marital problems (totally hypocritical since my mom was the breadwinner in their marriage).
  5. Divorce rates are astronomical, and with all the online dating apps around, men have greater opportunities to stray (ummmm….what about women? Don’t they have the same opportunities to stray?)

Sorry dad, I love you, but this patriarchal thought process does nothing for women empowerment, nor speaks to the modern woman.

How about this: A stable, loving relationship with a man is a NICE TO HAVE and not necessary for my well-being, drive or sense of accomplishment. I’d rather take my time, even if it means it will take years, than settle for a man less than what I deserve. The “old maid” and “cat lady” stereotypes no longer apply when you know who you are, what you want and how to get it.

Ladies, never let this type of silly rhetoric scare you from finding the right guy or settling with a jerk off just so you have a pretty ring on your finger.

If my mother had anything to say about it, who held out and married at 34, she’d tell him it’s hogwash.

Right on mom.

Dating Prospect Update: Sapiosexual Single Dad Postmortem

Dan arrived five minutes early and sat at the bar. It wasn’t too crowded at 8:00 pm. He looked a little older than his pictures, which I chalked up to him posting earlier pictures on the site.

He greeted me with a “Wow, you look great!” and a brief hug.

Although Dan is attractive, I still didn’t feel that instant chemistry. I had hoped that would change with time.

We grabbed Mexican-style drinks at the bar and moved to a table. Our conversation was slightly forced. His texting style was more verbose and fluid. Not what I was expecting.

After the idle chit chat about our kids and jobs we sat amused by a couple fighting at the bar. Newly engaged with a sparkling diamond on her ring finger, the girl was berating her drunk boyfriend about “having to deal with you.” His grand, drunken hand gestures only seemed to infuriate her more.

Dan and I decided to move to another bar and things became slightly more interesting. I remember discussions about our dreams and shared desire to not have more children. We also talked shop in our shared fields which was interesting.

Dan seemed to think our chemistry was in sync. I’m still not feeling it.

I’m willing to give it one last try. For all and intents and purposes, was a pretty banal date.

Online Dating Troll Of The Week: Douche McDoucherson

After talking to a pretty attractive guy for a few days, he asked me out this weekend. I was pretty strapped for time so I suggested next Friday. He came back saying he was going to a wedding next week. He hounded me for a coffee date all weekend (which I hate!) but promised it would be no longer than an hour.

Because he was pretty attractive in his pictures and my day plans with my mother were postponed, I agreed to meet for coffee at 11:00 a.m.

Online troll Douche

I woke up a little early to blow dry my hair and get ready. At 10:50 am, I was 5 minutes away from our location. I received a text from Douche McDoucherson stating he’d be there in 45. Not seconds. 45 MINUTES.

I had practically arrived and then immediately turned around.

Me: Ok. Afraid I don’t have the time, unfortunately.

Him: Ok. Yeah, sorry about that but I thought my car was at my place, but it’s at work.

Great. He was either hung over from the night before and forgot where he parked his car OR he was lying to see how long I’d wait (PUA/red pill tactic) OR a piss poor planner OR all of the above. I didn’t respond.

Who has time to wait 45 minutes for their date to show up?!

Since my free time is precious, I treat other people’s time as important too. Oh and did I mention the man is 36? He’s a little too old for this shit in my opinion (some arrested development going on). A precursor to why he’s still single?

I NEVER wait more than 15 minutes for my dates. If a guy doesn’t value your time enough to show up on the first date, marginally on time, it’s foreshadowing other dates to come. Since this guy and I never went out on a date, he’s now one of my lovely Online Dating Trolls Of The Week and deserves a big, fat NEXT–>.

Single Mom AND Dating? Outcome Independence Is Key

I heard this phrase “outcome independence” in reference to men and dating. This is one of the few times I won’t attribute the writer because at his core, he is a misogynist and I don’t make a habit of driving traffic to chauvinistic websites. To his credit, he is one of the milder offenders.

As a single mother, I think he has a stunningly good idea. His use of “outcome independence” reflects his ideals supporting open-relationships, which I disagree, however the term refers to a particular mindset. If single women, particularly single mothers, devote their time, energy and resources to one person without any type of ACTION-oriented commitment, chances are this arrangement will go badly for the time-strapped single mom. To be “outcome independent” is to carry a mindset of “whatever be will be” to any perceived commitment- it provides accountability towards ACTION rather than WORDS.

So what does that exactly mean? Living your life with a focused mission of happiness and getting rid of baggage that is a time waster or is inefficient. Some scenarios will illustrate:

  • Single mom of two, Betty, has been talking online to a few guys. One she happens to like asks for her number. She obliges and he proceeds to text her plans for a date. They both agree to a location for Friday night. Betty has a birthday party to attend, but assures her prospective date that they can meet for drinks after. He agrees, promising to text her the time. Friday morning rolls around and her Prince #1 hasn’t texted her. Should she text him a reminder? Start conversation by asking about his day? Maybe he forgot because he isn’t a great scheduler?

Nope. To be outcome independent, Betty should go ahead with her original plans as if she never made date plans in the first place. She is letting the natural ebb and flow of dating take place. If he never follows up, chances are he had no intention of meeting her and is now an official TIME SUCK of her precious energy. She only commits energy to action, not promises.

  • Recently divorced and working mom, Candace, met a man while grocery shopping. They exchange numbers and he promised to call. After three days, Prince #2 does call after work. They have one of the most engaging and interesting conversations she has ever had with the opposite sex. She feels that her faith in men is on its way to restoration! For the next week, Prince #2 calls to talk every day and they make plans to meet for coffee one weekend when her ex-husband has the kids. The fateful day arrives and as Candace is getting ready, she gets a phone call from Prince #2. His tire is flat and has to reschedule. Bummer! They make plans for lunch that following week. As the week drags on, they continue to talk like before, however Candace notices Prince #2 is exceedingly busy and can’t meet for lunch as promised, but asks for her to get a babysitter instead for a date night. Should Candace take initiative and get the babysitter? Her neighbor loves babysitting her kids and often does so in a pinch!

Absolutely NOT. As engaging as Prince #2 seems, he fails to realize or acknowledge that Candace is a very busy individual too. She is practically jumping hoops to see him. His first cancellation may have been genuine, however his failures to meet for lunch are telling. Prince #2 likes the “girlfriend experience” of talking to Candace in an intimate way, but when rubber meets the road, he isn’t committing energy to getting to know her as his glib pronouncements may indicate. To maintain “outcome independence,” Candace shrugs, stops participating in their two hour chat sessions and gets on a dating service post-haste!

  • Single mom of three, Katie, is not that interested in dating. She is tired most of the time and her ex isn’t the most dependable person. After over a year of celibacy, Katie is finally persuaded by her friends to meet a single father for a blind date. She meets him and they have an initial spark. He mentions on the end of the date that he would like to see her the following weekend. She agrees and calls her mom to babysit the kids overnight. Her mom obliges because she can’t remember the last time her daughter went out on a date! Prince #3 meets her at a comedy club and they have a great time! She spends the night at his house. Before she leaves to go home, he begs to see her again when the kids are at her ex’s house. She agrees. The week goes by. She’s sure he’ll call. He doesn’t. At the end of the weekend, Prince #3 finally calls and acts like nothing is amiss. Should Katie demand what happened? After all, she cleared her schedule for the weekend!

At this point, you’re probably saying NO! If Katie was truly outcome independent, she would have called her girlfriends and planned a night out. If and when Prince #3 called, he would have to work himself into her busy schedule. Katie would have remained free to enjoy her weekend to the fullest and if Prince #3 was lucky, he’d have the opportunity to see her.

I write this post is after reading other sad stories of single mothers and dating- they are stood up, pushed to the back-burner, or jump through hoops to get a date. This should NOT be happening. Once you let go of dating expectations, that’s when a man worthy of dating will come around and respect your independence, autonomy, time, energy and limited resources.

Stay independent ladies!

Would You Like More Eggs & Bacon With That Waffle [ing]?

There’s this big shake up happening with my group of girl friends lately. It’s the called the “waffling” man. Most of us are now newly single after quick flirtations with relationships.

The waffling man makes a great politician. He makes these large pronouncements and espouses his ideology of how things will be under his care. Cue evil laughter once he has secured your vote.

How do you know if he’s a waffle? Well, in short order (no pun intended):

1. He’s interested in immediate intimacy (3I’s).

Like that alliteration? I just made it up. It’s the old bait before the switch. It’s like a lure, bobbing above the surface, right before it ensnares you for a fresh gutting.

2. He operates like a broken faucet.

His emotional faucet only operates on two settings- scalding hot or icy cold. One minute he’s sending you selfies and cute kitty pictures to brighten up your afternoon. The next minute, he’s cold ghosting you for days.

3. He loves the “I’m busy” excuse.

Not like I’m posting from experience or anything…but when you need to vent or celebrate, his unavailability is because “I’m busy.” He uses this excuse like a well-worn pair of undies, because how can you argue “busy?” You’d be crazy to.

4. His neediness is endearing. Yours is crazy.

Women are clearly irrational. Any hint of vulnerability is a bumpy ride to the local insane asylum. Guys who express neediness are just “living in the moment” or “getting caught up in it.” Accept and learn to love these double standards- they will never change.

5. He wants to take it slow after a month of rushing to get you off dating apps.

This one is my favorite. Beware the man who excitedly wants you off the market. Chances are his profile is still active and suffering from a serious case of WOBO- Waiting On Better Opportunities. A waffler is the definition of WOBO.

Hey, now that I have my waffle, where’s that side of bacon and eggs?

My 5 WTF – FML Moments Of This Week (And It’s Only Tuesday)…

1. I wake up to find that my 20 quick-matches contain three ex-boyfriends (I wish I was making this up).

2. My break up with Andrew’s daycare ends with his sitter putting his stuff in a bag and leaving it outside for me to pick it up.

3. My new daycare relationship begins with a $280 advance + purchasing new supplies.

4. What I think is 20 minutes of Andrew “playing quietly” is actually him pulling an entire jumbo pack of baby wipes and scattering them in his room.

5. I realize that this time, last week I a.) had stable child care; b.) a boyfriend; c.) was rocking my job; d.) had a massage planned; e.) had an awesome birthday dinner planned. None of these things worked out.

How To Break-Up Like A Boss

After my birthday dinner, my best friend and I got on the topic of break-ups. By sheer happenstance, we were both undergoing simultaneous break-ups with very similar personality types- selfish and emotionally immature- older men (35+). The emotional fortitude of Shelia is something that I admire the longer I know her. She is truly unbreakable.

I’ve probably been in about 10 short and long-term relationships in my life. As I take my life’s inventory, the broken relationships I rebounded relatively quickly from involved one action and two words:

“NO CONTACT.”

Here are some tips I’ve learned on how to reduce the amount of emotional energy spent on a break-up.

How To Break-Up Like A Boss:

1. Pedicure (indulgence) + dating app (validation) = Happiness.

No matter what I’m doing, I take some mommy maintenance time right after a break-up. I schedule it as soon as I have a free moment and allow myself to be pampered. I also remind myself that I am still desirable and have plenty of prospects by perusing my dating app visitors and messages. It’s okay to feel a little vulnerable right now.

2. Clean house.

I mean this figuratively of course. No one likes to fucking clean their house. I go through my text messages and delete the ex’s sweet nothings and mean ramblings. I delete his messages and block him from the dating app. I also permanently delete his number from my phone. There will be no desperate texts from this chick at 1:00 a.m.!

3. Exercise!

The best revenge is living well. Feeling fit and getting a nice rush of endorphins to improve your mood is invaluable.

4. Getting lost in the moment.

For me it’s writing and reading. For others it might be gardening or home improvement. Getting lost in activities that nurture the mind and body is how you let go of fear and loss.

5. NO CONTACT.

No matter what he/she says, it’s broken. It won’t be fixed. It’s probably not worth saving. Don’t. Respond.

6. Letting go.

The most important tip. Only you have control of how you respond or don’t respond to your break up. Good relationships should be effortless. Spending time trying to fix the same issues is energy better channeled elsewhere. Take a deep breath. Succumb to what isn’t and what will never be. Stop over thinking. Let go. Move on.

A Few Safety Tips Before You Ride The Emotional Roller Coaster: How The Hot Hipster Became A Hot Mess

The reason I love blogging so much is that it records the promises you keep to yourself. This post is a perfect example of learning, maturing, refusing to make the same mistakes and never settling for less than you deserve.

So before I take you on my emotional roller coaster ride of the last month, here are some safety tips:

  1. Keep all emotion and confusion inside the ride at all times.
  2. Make sure your “vulnerability” safety harness is secured before the ride begins.
  3. Please note that there will be several high drops.
  4. Enjoy the ride while it lasts, but know that we have very few repeat riders.

So, now that we understand the safety procedures, here we go:

Before we began our exclusive relationship, Hipster literally wined and dined me. He brought me flowers on our lunch date, he cooked me a wonderful dinner, he made large pronouncements such as calling me “love,” “future life partner,” “stunning” and that we would be a “power couple.” I even helped him think of ideas for promoting his catering business. It all seemed idyllic, even with the red flags of living with a slightly unhinged female roommate and the weird relationship with his ex wife, who he said was still “waiting for him.”

After we became “official,” I noticed the romancing started to fade. It seemed that because he had “won” my affections, the charade of wooing was no longer as important. Questions about my life and inquiries  about my dreams and life experiences faded into the background and were replaced by his obsession over his business and interests in wealth accumulation. Every conversation began and ended with his stories, frustrations and feelings. It was a one-sided start to a once promising relationship.

Then came the insistence on unsafe sex- something I was definitely opposed to. I was made to feel guilty about not taking birth control (the pill reeks havoc on my body). I also didn’t want an IUD because of the horror stories I’ve heard from friends. Hipster was frustrated that I preferred condoms because his sexual experience was more important than being safe.

The next disagreement ensued last Friday. He refused to talk about my feelings on birth control, but I eventually agreed to go to the doctor for a prescription. He also let me in on the fact that while he was married, his wife gave him a “hall pass” to “improve their relationship,” which he used and wasn’t opposed to repeating in future relationships. I nearly walked out on him until he stopped me to say “I was just joking.” When I left early Saturday morning, I thought we were on the same footing. I clearly was wrong. For four days he ghosted me, citing that he was too busy. Fine. Last night I sent him a text asking for us to talk about a few concerns. He called me on his way to an event. The conversation went something like this:

Hipster: So what do you want to talk about? When you send a message that you “want to talk,” it’s never good.

Me: Well, I just feel like you’ve been so scalding hot and then so icy cold these past few days and I want to understand what’s been going on.

Hipster: I’m busy! I can’t just text you every hour on the hour when I’m working. When I’m not working, I’m freer to text.

Me: Okay. I just feel like there’s been a sharp atmospheric change between us.

Hipster: I have to say, that for lack of a better term, you’re just trying to nag me and frankly it’s off putting.

Me: I’m just trying to tell you how I feel. If that’s nagging to you than you’re misusing the term.

Hipster: I’m on my way to an event and my energy has now completely changed, so thanks.

Me: If you’re energy has changed, that’s about you, not me wanting to talk.

Hipster. Well, I guess we both need to do some pondering “about us” and what we want. I need to go. You have a nice night, Penny.” [Click].

Yes, he hung up on me. Just like that.

So I pondered. And pondered. Not only was Hipster a poor communicator (kind of a non-starter in my relationships) he was also selfish. I decided I didn’t need to be with someone who wouldn’t be able to stick through the tough times or disagreements. As you’ve probably gathered from my blog, I’m no waif. I am strong and independent and have no time for men who treat their women with disregard and disrespect. Been there, done that.

So I decided to end it with this:

Text Part 1

Text Part 1

Text Part 2

Text Part 2

I never received a response, and I’m okay with that. I allowed myself about 12 hours to feel upset and disappointed. I then deleted his number and information. I want it to be a clean break, even if the shelf life was for one month.

I leave you all feeling optimistic. In my heart, I know I did the right thing for me. In the end, all I can do is love and protect myself and Andrew. I owe it to him to be with a partner who will respect his mother.