I used to listen to Steve Harvey talk about the ways a man will show his interest in a woman. 

Those three things were to provide, profess, and protect.

Protection.

I need a man to hold me down in the areas I can’t when it comes to being safe in this world.

Remember Miss Sophia said the world ain’t safe for a woman child in a house full of men. And here we are in this society full of men who think rape culture is alright. 

She must’ve asked for it, about the woman who said no repeatedly to the man she let in her home just for tea or coffee. 

Remember For Colored Girls? 

Just because I enjoy your company doesn’t mean I want to enjoy your body.

I always had to be tough. Who was there to protect me? 

My father died when I was 15. My stepfather was a joke, and I didn’t meet my brother until I was 26.

Yeah. I don’t think too much about fighting women. We been fought, beat up, abused, mistreated, made to be responsible while the boys got away with bloody murder.

It’s easier for me to forgive the transgressions of a woman than it is for me to not hold a man accountable for his behavior. He was built to lead. And I can’t see letting him fall short of using traits that will make him a better leader. 

I am more mature these days, even at my lowest. But I remember how I was always quick to jump in a dude face screaming, “I fight boys.”

I would’ve, it I had to. Until my momma died. My baby was in my belly and the boy who wanted to fight me wanted to abort the baby in my baby too. Yeah. I just humbled myself.

I don’t keep much beef with my sisters. 

But these guys. The guys Who are supposed to be protecting his sisters. The guys lying on their dipstick just trying to see how many licks it takes to get a chick to drop her guard and let him in. 

Those lying boys.

They love to pretend as if they have gotten notches on their belt, when they have really just gotten dismissed, looked at in contempt like why are you here looking to undress yourself in my space as if I am interested in pursuing you on that level?

Those lying boys. Supposed to be protecting sister girls image. Supposed to be protecting her heart. When they pretend they want anything more than sex they allow a woman’s heart to be unguarded. They are supposed to be protecting her body. Why satisfy your cravings on a woman treating her like a toilet. Just someplace to do your business?

What is wrong with settling down with one woman?

I often wondered.

And then I saw a post. It talked about hazing sin fraternities. It spoke of rituals I would care not to discuss right now. But it caused me to wonder about men and their ability to be with one woman. Does it have anything to do with needing an urge and a craving satisfied that a woman never can?

Is that why my brothers refuse to protect their sisters. Protect their reputations after one  out of character deed, forgetting all the good they did before? Protect their minds by speaking truth to them. Protect their bodies by honoring their no. Protect their hearts by treating them with kindness and dignity?

Who taught black women how to hate themselves. Was it the black man with his love of the exotic features? That same mans’ love of the look of women who have never and may never walk along side them in the struggle? Is that why we compete with each other like crabs in  a barrel. Who has the longest weave, the fairest skin, the most European features is the one who will get chosen by the man who hates himself, and hates his sister in the process.

Brother I needed protection. Ten years ago. On this early morning when I supposed to be headed to school. 

My dreams were left there with the hauntings of a naive, not so innocent, young woman who never knew what being protected felt like. 

There was no savior back then.

But that’s why I love my Savior like I do now.

I used to choose men based on what my physical self told me was good. If he looked good, or smelled good, and did this and that good. Yep, it’s him. He is the one for me. But now a days things are different. If he doesn’t have integrity he is a no go. You remember the traits I discussed in the last blog? Those values would be honesty, loyalty, and moral fibers in his values; now let’s add, and be able to protect me to the growing list. If he doesn’t have those basic things; I am not interested.

I get this. This is not all my brothers. But I have been so bad at making choices, it is hard to be able to discern between what’s real and what’s fake. 

I just dismissed the fake. The fake that got mad at me for not letting him in my home, and not letting him kiss me. 

Nope. No sir. These lips are on reserve for somebody God has deemed worthy. 

The fake that got to spreading vicious rumors about me behind my back, but failed to say a word in my face. The fake that keeps harassing me with his nasty display of indecent behavior by gossiping and repeating secrets I thought I told a friend.

I Guess. My brother became my enemy.

But the Lord is faithful. He will strengthen me and protect me from the evil one. The ones that refuse to become accountable for their behavior. That keep lying to themselves about where their self hate, and hatred of women comes from. The ones that never try to live by the standards they grew up believing in and have let their moral fibers be given over to the enemy they used to sing songs in praises to Jesus to defeat that enemy.

The ones that would rather beat their mother down for being a failure, instead of loving her through her storms and accept her where she is. The one who treats women based on how he feels about the mother that failed them in life.

We are not to blame. And therapy helps us address deep seated hurts that cause us to fail in our interpersonal relationships as adults. 

That mother did the best she can. She probably just wasn’t protected from something that changed the whole course of her life. I know about being that woman. I know about healing from hurt and trauma. I know that it takes a lot of strength to do so. And sometimes it is hard to find that strength while trying to be strong for little people that demand so much.

Those who are critical of others usually have a hard time accepting theirselves. So. Accept you are doing the best you can, as we all are. I am sure my brothers would protect me if they knew better. And when they know better they do better. 

Do better, and be your best. There is a whole world waiting on your greatness. But in the meantime. 

Protect your sister the same way you want someone to protect your daughters and sisters. 

That’s love. So love on purpose. Intentionally. Like in art. It takes time to complete the masterpiece. So take your time to love someone. It is not always easy. But it will always yield fruit, because it is a seed!

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