Cheating: The Double Standard
Please don't be turned off by the photo. I promise this post has a point and they are just one of my examples.
I might have mentioned before that I tend to watch trash TV when I need to clock out from the everyday happenings in the world. The majority of those shows are reality, which makes this even worse, but the subject matter is still important. The common theme in these shows lately has been cheating and the struggle women endure in forgiving their significant other. It's been painful to watch and quite frankly, the majority of the men didn't deserve to be forgiven. However, it really made my mind wonder. Why do women take back men who cheat and humiliate them? Why do women receive backlash when we decide to leave? Why do we blame ourselves when it happens and why is it so hard for the men to be accountable for their actions?
The prime example I want to use is Mrs. Jackie Waters from Bravo's hit show "Married to Medicine", which focuses on doctors and their spouses. Jackie is one of Atlanta's most successful doctors, and she takes her work seriously. We all know that success means sacrificing a lot of time and effort, and Jackie's husband, Curtis, was feeling the brunt of that. In response to Jackie's long hours, Curtis stepped out on her, leaving her humiliated. His reasoning for doing so was because he felt that she wasn't giving him enough attention and was abandoning their relationship for her job. Never mind that he denied having children with her or that he forced her to buy a huge house in the suburbs that she didn't want. He also tried to put a part of the blame on her. I don't get it. Here you have a successful and accomplished woman but because you feel abandoned, you cheat on her to get her attention. Never mind that people chose to blame Jackie instead of Curtis.
In another scenario, we have Jax and Brittany who are on the show "Vanderpump Rules", which focuses on servers who work at a prominent Beverly Hills restaurant. (Don't judge me, this show has some good Caucasian drama), It was no surprise to me when Jax cheated on Brittany, due to his past transgressions, but what took the cake was when he was caught on a voice recording trashing her after the affair. What really confused me was that after Brittany found out, she kept saying that she knew her worth, and he didn't deserve her over and over but yet stayed. She even went above and beyond to throw him a big birthday party and showered him with affection. It was almost like she blamed herself for his cheating and wanted to prove she was good a girlfriend. How? Why? He also made it very clear that if she would have stepped out on him, she would have been called every whore in the book. Just the typical double standard coming into play.
Back to the initial picture above with Kirk and Rasheeda. We all watch "Love and Hip Hop:Atlanta" even when we hate to admit it. If you have been an avid watcher like myself, then you are familiar with Kirk and Rasheeda's storyline. Kirk has stepped out on Rasheeda several times and why she continues to take him back, I will never know but she does. This time around, a child was created and Kirk did everything in his power to avoid taking a DNA even though the proof was in the pudding. This time, Rasheeda kicked him out and filed for separation. What throws me for a loop is that Kirk is expecting to Rasheeda to forgive him and for them to move forward as a family. Like he actually said this out loud on a tv show. So now, women are expected to forgive their cheating significant others because if they don't, they aren't fighting for their relationship. Do we have to accept children created outside the relationship as well?
It's become pretty standard that when a man cheats, the women is expected to forgive and take him back. It's just how things are. If we don't take them, we haven't fought hard enough for our relationship and have given up on "The Good Black Man." It becomes such a double standard because if the women in these situations would have cheated, they would be forced to wear the scarlet letter and labeled a whore. In each of these situations, the men were asked what they would do if the roles were reversed and they each responded with disgust. They couldn't bare to think of their women being with another man and if it did happen, they couldn't see a resolution and would end the relationship. Why aren't women given the same grace? If I decided to walk away from this man who embarrassed me, why should I be shunned for it?
It really irked my nerves in each situation when the men were confronted with their infidelity, they wanted to quickly sweep it under the rug and move on. Whenever Jackie discussed her feelings with Curtis and what he needed to do to make things right, he became agitated each time. He had the nerve to raise a fuss when she made him sleep in the downstairs bedroom. Sir, you were just laying with someone else. In the case of Jax and Brittany, rather then try to make amends for his wrong doings, he chose to insult her and point out all her imperfections. Kirk has always and will be a sorry excuse for a man, and Rasheeda's only reason for staying for with him it that she's been with this man for majority of her life so she doesn't know anyone else. He never seemed genuine in his apology and his excuse was that he was just tired of being married. Like, why do we put up with this?
I've heard a lot of married couples and friends of mine state that cheating is not a deal breaker for them. It's not something that would that end the relationship because of the time they've invested or if there children are involved. I can understand that but I can't see that for me. I just don't believe in staying with someone who disrespects you in that manner, and you shouldn't have to regardless of what type of man he is. If you're unhappy in a relationship, articulate your feelings, talk, and decide whether or not if this a situation that you want to stay in. Unfortunately, the old school ways of thinking still stick and a lot of relationships are still operating in dysfunction. I'm going to end this post by saying this...your relationship is your own. Regardless of what decisions you make concerning your significant other, make sure you're being respected. Men need to realize that when they are blessed with a good woman, they should be willing to do anything to keep her.