Never Can Say Good-Bye!

Just admit it.

Admit what?

Admit that you aren’t strong enough to leave.  Admit that you’re willing to put up with interesting situations, and incessant discussions of the same thing without resolution.

It’s okay. 

You’re not alone.

It’s hard to end a relationship, even if it’s not working.  You’ve put in all this work and you expected some sort of a payoff.  A committment, a spouse, maybe just a drawer in the bedroom for your things…something.  So now, you feel a little bit like you should stay and see this thing through, right? Make sure that it’s run it’s course–you owe it that (or rather you think that you do).  But again, you are not alone.

I cannot say it enough.  We are not supposed to have bad relationships.  We are supposed to be able to avoid people who are not in the same place we are (I call the places, “Carnal, Communal or Committal”) and we are supposed to have the strength to let go of the people who show themselves unworthy of us.  Now when I say unworthy, it makes sound as if it has to be a big deal.  But the truth is, it doesn’t have to be a big deal.  In fact, if we would pay more attention to the little things in our relationships, we might be able to avoid the big heartbreaking thing that ultimately ends this relationship, and shatters your faith in love, the opposite sex, and the ability to ever give that much to anyone else ever again.

Did someone say, “things?”

How do you assess the little things? Well, you can go through the painstaking process of talking to your friends, family and even the Twitterverse, or you can just get my book.

There’s a book about this?

Yes, and I wrote it.  I wrote it to help you stop wasting your time with people that are going to break your heart and ruin your life (if only for a moment).  And, guess what, I didn’t just include ONE little thing…there are TWELVE little things in this book, plus a chapter on how to end it–if that is what you decide you need to do.

You will be strong enough in no time!  I promise!

Guess what I called it?

The Book of Bye! (Seriously…that’s what it is, so why not just call it that).

Look, I know the reason why you can’t say bye, and you know the reason (or reasons) why you can’t say bye.  And no matter what the exact reason is, this is one moment that you can take to figure out what you need to do.

…and I will be right beside you.

In paperback.

For more information on “The Book of Bye!” click here.

Stronger…better…wiser…THANKFUL!

Today is Thanksgiving Day! So, most of of are going to celebrate this day with people that we care about (or at least have to act like we care about them), and eat things that you will lament about later.

However, just allow me to take a moment and tell you that I am thankful.  While I am thankful for the good things like friends, family, etc., I am more thankful for the relationships that failed, and the lessons that I learned from those experiences.

I have been privileged to be the relationship coach for a select few of you in the Twitterverse, and I know that it’s the mistakes that I have made that drive me to be the best relationship coach…ever! So, I have to thank the people who made me passionate person who I am.  No, I won’t list them by name, but I am thankful for them.  Coaching allows me to bring both the good and bad of my relationships resume to building a relationship with my clients.  But without the issues, dilemmas, situations and drama, I couldn’t offer my clients a person someone who is committed to their relationship success.

So…that’s why I wanted to take a moment and thank the losers and misguided individuals who made being me possible. 

But seriously, I am thankful, and on my way to something meaningful because of them.

Have a marvelous Thanksgiving!

xoxo…

Coach Steph
Thankful to be a Best Dating Coach Finalist, idateawards.com…Please vote for WhatTheLove.org here.

I am “Keeping it Real With NeNe!”

This last Celebrity Love Note is dedicated to NeNe Leakes.  The loud mouth “Housewife” whom Bravo saw fit to make famous continues to do her level best to make my good black woman stock plummet.  In the midst of it all, she is now going through a divorce, and so this love note is written in hopes that other newly divorced individuals do not make the mistakes that I believe she is on the verge of making, among others.

My take:
NeNe’s marriage was allegedly destroyed by fame.  Now, that doesn’t mean that her husband was perfect.  I actually believe that he is a clear demonstration of her father issues, and the need for control, but I digress.  This marriage may have stood a chance if the Real Housewives franchise hadn’t come a’calling, but it’s not the show, it’s the fame that NeNe has received courtesy of the show that is the start of the problems, in my opinion.

But fast-forward to the present.  NeNe and Greg are separated and my assumption is that divorce proceedings are going to be taking place.  Note: Taking place.  They are not divorced…yet.  While some would tell her things such as, “the best way to get over one man is to get undera new one,” this is farthest from the truth.  In fact, this isn’t the time to get over anything, it’s time for you to figure out your role in the breakup of this marriage (how many times have I said this this week).  And furthermore, this is not the time to date…anyone…for any amount of time.  Sorry, sweetie, but you are still married.

Now, I understand that you have dysfunction all around you.  Cynthia’s farce of a marriage is enough to make anyone think that if you do better than that, then you’ve done okay; however, don’t be fooled.  We all saw your tirade regarding the treatment that you’ve received in this marriage.  But, NeNe, I doubt severely that you know how to be a wife.  If you treated your husband even remotely as badly as you have treated some of your co-stars, and fellow Apprentices, I can say with all conviction that being married to you was no walk in the park (more like a walk over burning coals).  Besides the stripper-esque sexual prowess that you’ve bragged about, what else did you bring to the table besides a child and a need to get out of Athens, Georgia?  As such is the case, perhaps this marriage was doomed from the start–TV just expedited the inevitable.

If she were my client:
I’d need a Valium.  Ok, let’s be fair.  If NeNe Leakes came to me for relationship coaching.  I would take away her ego, and put a muzzle on her.  Not literally.  However, NeNe has to learn how to communicate like an adult woman, or she doesn’t have to worry about relationships–platonic or romantic.  I believe that she wants people to prove that they love her by walking through fire, and not getting burned.  That’s quite a fete, even for a Cirque du Soleil cast member, but I truly believe that is what she desires.  For those without fire-walker capabilities, there’s NeNe’s Worship Club.  These individuals exist to answer her beck and call and maintain her ego.  The President of the Worship Club? You guessed it, Cynthia Bailey.  We’ll see how that relationship works out in the coming weeks. Hmmmmm…

Now, the fire-walking mandate is just plain ridiculous.  No one can live up to those standards.  No one has lived up to those standards.

Until we (she and I) can push through these unrealistic relationship expectations, NeNe shouldn’t even think about dating.  She should keep her focus on acting dignified through the divorce, and being the parent that her children need.  Not being “rich;” not buying $9 million homes in Miami; not appeasing her fans with over-the-top theatrics, and not criticizing everyone in Atlanta, but crying “haters” every five minutes.

I need her to do better.

What we can all learn from this:
Separation is not divorced.  Getting divorced is not divorced. Let’s be clear.

What else we can learn?  Our mouths can kill every relationship that we have.  There is no way that anyone can convince me that NeNe hasn’t unleashed hers on her soon to be ex-husband.  But beyond that, we should all learn that we should pay very close attention to the behaviors of the people in our lives, before we become involved with them. 

Men: If the woman you’re involved with has no problem telling people off, guess what, you are not immune to receiving the same treatment (please share this with Lamar Odom about his beloved Khloe).  If that’s not an attractive proposition, then don’t get involved.  If you want to test the theory, then let the first time she emasculates you with profane or insulting words be the last time.  This is not something that gets better.

Women: Being the girl who will tell everyone off is amusing, but it’s not attractive.  A real man will not be attracted to your ability to cuss everyone out at the drop of a dime.  I realize that you are a strong woman and want to let people know that you don’t put up with anything, but consider working on how you deliver such messages, and only “go there” when the situation truly calls for it. If you are around people who always seem to push you to that point, then get some new people in your life, and leave this dysfunction behind.

In the end, we have to respect each other–words and all.  Otherwise, we are all doomed to walk the path that NeNe is walking right now. And even in the cutest Louboutins, its not a journey that anyone wants to take.

Plonk!

For The LOVE of Demi?

The Celebrity Love Notes continue, and as another relationship bites the proverbial dust…I am here to give you some real considerations to avoid the mistakes you see in today’s headlines.

My Take:
This relationship had a good foundation.  Ashton seem to assimilate seamlessly into the Moore-Willis clan, and and Demi’s new physique didn’t hurt Ashton’s ego on the red carpet.

Now, I always picture Demi Moore emascualtingAshton beyond reproach, because at some point she knows that she could be his mother, and no amount of Kabbalah (or whatever she does) will change that.  Ashton, while a good Midwestern boy, can only take so much, and I think that this intolerance is what we see manifested in the now pending divorce for this A-list couple.

Well…that and something about the paparazzi and another woman…tsk-tsk.

If either of them were my client:
First of all, Demi and I have somethings to work on because this is her third marriage.  She is old enough to know what she wants in a relationship, but is still failing at marriage–which means that it’s not all their fault.  She, like my good friend JLo, might have some similar issues when it comes to understanding the purpose of marriage and how to sustain one.

Additionally, I need to confirm my suspicions about her ability to make a man feel like a tiny, little, impotent boy before she leaves many more casualties in the wake of her post-Ashton singleness.

One last thing, we have to establish is that she, nor Ashton are single at this point.  As I have told you before breakups and divorces are likened to death, and this is a time of mourning.  Matters not what he did, or she said, or she did, and he said, this relationship must be grieved and time must be taken to heal from it. Period. 

Now Ashton seems like a good guy.  He’s got good Midwestern roots, and an amusing personality.  If you’ve seen his pre-Demi modeling footage, then you know he’s not hard on the eyes either.

So, Ashton, what’s the problem here?

Ashton hadn’t been married before Demi and this isn’t a good or a bad thing, it just is.  But something has changed this 6-year relationship, and I need to know his role in those changes.

Once we establish what his present mistakes, and mis-takes have contributed to the failure of this marriage, we’ll look to the future.  I would probably give him about 6-9 months to get himself together and then start doing some Connestions (my version of  “matchmaking”) with mature, non-celebrity women his own age.  Emphasis on his OWN age.

What we can all learn from this:
We can all learn that marriages are challenging.  Ashton recently tweeted, I will forever cherish the time I spent with Demi. Marriage is one of the most difficult things in the world and unfortunately sometimes they fail. Love and Light, AK”  If such is the case, and you cherish the time, why did you do anything to bring this to an end.

Understand that there are some things that should end a marriage, and some things that are challenges we should overcome.  We have become too spoiled with our relationships, and in the process, are ready to diss and dismiss at the slightest sign of trouble.  We have got to be committed to our relationships. 

Now, it’s not fair for me to judge the fault in this relationship, because I know neither of these individuals personally.  However, if they didn’t make a valiant effort to save this union, then both are at fault. If they’re getting divorced over an issue that existed prior to the marriage, then they shouldn’t have gotten friggin married!

Again, marriage is a MAGNIFIER of what is right and wrong in a relationship (Coach Stephism).  Nothing changes because you got married, it just becomes a bigger joy or a larger P.I.T.A.

So, we say farewell to the couple known as Demi and Ashton.  No more sappy tweets, and group red carpet pics…it’s all over now.  But since the two of them will soon be running around Hollywood making new headlines, I hope that they both get themselves together.

Oh yea, I won’t miss those tweets!

LOL!

Celebrity Love Note No.3: Oh Jenny!

So..today I am speaking “to” good ol’ Jenny from the Block…check it out!

My Take:
This whole marriage concept is totally out of hand.  It seems as if Jennifer Lopez uses marriage to her advantage.  The first mistake is using it to her advantage.

 I don’t know if many of you know this, but a marriage is supposed to produce something positive in the world.  Not just children, but actually greatness.  Sum of you two, should be greater than your parts.  So, to use it to your advantage, is not the correct use of the institution.

 It is very irresponsible to continue to enter into a union that doesn’t last.  At some point, you have to admit that it’s not all about them.  You have some definitive fault in why these marriages aren’t working and going the distance.  Are you choosing the wrong men?  Is marriage just something you do? Do you love weddings?  What is the problem because clearly, there is one.

 Now that’s not to say that the individuals Jennifer marries are perfect.  But, really did the Latino busboy (AKA Hubby Number One) stand a chance?  That poor man was thrust from plastic runners to red carpets with a short period of time to adapt to the change, and when Jennifer’s career took off, eventually the marriage was left in the dust.

Some would say there is a pattern here.

If she were my client:
We would have to look very closely at these relationships before they were marriages, and explore why she thought this guy was husband material.  After discovering that answer, I am pretty sure that we need to explore her expectations for a husband, and if they are realistic.  We’ve all heard the stories of J-Lo’s outrageous performance riders, and perks for her entourage, it is possible that she asks outlandish things of her mate?  Does she think it’s over if he misses a 10 p.m. curfew?  Or if he doesn’t draw her bath at 81.3 degrees exactly?  Of course, I am over exaggerating (at least I hope that I am), but if anything remotely similar exists then we need to nip these things in the bud.

I also want to explore her vision for a marital relationship.  What are her beliefs about marriage founded upon?  What role does she play in bringing the vision to pass?  I will be whipping out all kinds of tools on Jenny from the Block…from Relationship Wheels to my beloved SWOT Analysis, I am going to work her until I get to the bottom of this nonsense.

 What we can learn from all of this:
Marriage is not something to be taken lightly.  Additionally, it is not something to be taken at all if we are not with someone we can see going old with.  One of my favorite tweets reads, “people are not getting divorced because marriage doesn’t work; they are getting divorced because they never should’ve gotten married.” 

Don’t be yet another person who engages in this new concept of marriage: the hobby.  You have to realize that marriage goes back to the Garden of Eden.  And if Adam can get over Eve talking to that snake and bringing him some bad fruit (with some pretty serious consequences), then we should be able to create marriages that last and overcome the challenges that two people inevitable will face when they say, “I do.”

Then again, maybe you adore Jennifer and see no problem with her getting married and getting divorced.

THIS JUST IN: I just read that it’s speculated that Marc Anthony and Jennifer’s divorce is over the educational plan for their twins—translation: what school the twins should go to?

 Seriously? 

 Well, perhaps the fourth time is the charm.

 Good luck, chica!