What we can learn from Mary J. Blige's pending divorce
I started writing this blog post after the Breakfast Club and Angie Martinez interview's that Mary J. Blige did a few weeks back. Then I got overwhelmed with launching the website, didn't have time to finish it and didn't know if it would be old news by the time I got back to it. And then I saw this picture of her at the Met Gala and I was like Yaaaaaassssss Mary, let me get back to work!!!!
This past week Mary stopped by multiple radio stations to promote her album, Strength of a Woman, (I listened, I liked!) and give a little insight on her pending divorce. We've all heard the rumors of her husband cheating and then asking for an astronomical amount of money to help him continue to live the same lifestyle after their divorce (Bihhhh where?), but it was great to hear it from Mary. After listening to her interviews and album, I knew I had to share a couple of her gems with my people (you).
" He doesn't deserve what he's demanding... You didn't make me, you're not God"
The "You didn't make me, you're not God" line really hit me. It made me think of all the men who believe that they are entitled to your wealth or celebrity after being with you. Case in point, this is why I won't buy Drake's albums anymore. I went through a tough break up the same year he dropped Take Care in 2011. On it was a song titled Shot for me which included lines like "Yea i said it, bitch I'm the man/don't you forget it/ the way you walk, that's me/ the way you talk, that's me/ the way you've got your hair up did you forget that's me". Which had other lame dudes singing along, validating their toxic male ego and believing that they deserved credit for the success, growth, and possible implants/surgery of the women they had been with. But I digress...this is about Mary.
Look, Mary may have thrived while they were together and her husband may have supported her through some of that, but I just can't see how that adds up to 130k in temporary spousal support. Nah bruh! You did not create me and although you're trying to break me, I will survive and thrive once again! He doesn't deserve anything, but a "thank you for your time" and "good luck in life!" No, I'm not a male-basher, but if you cheat in your marriage AND don't want to do what's necessary to right your wrongs with your wife, then bye! That goes for women too.
"He was my everything and you can't make a person your everything, cause you're giving them too much power... God's power."
When you're in love it is so easy to slip into a pattern of making your partner your everything. You give them all of you because you feel like that's what you're supposed to do, especially in marriage. You want them to be a part of every aspect of your life, which is why wives often lose a sense of self in their marriage. Even in my first year of marriage, I had to remind myself that it's not selfish to take time for me or seek out experiences that only benefit me. As long as its not to the detriment of my husband and son, I deserve it.
Like I said I'm new to this marriage thing, but I think in any relationship there will be a struggle for power. As your single self, you have all of the power. You come and go as you please, spend what you want, make decisions based on your self-interest. When you get married, it doesn't work that way. In a partnership you have to share the power. Truth is, it will never be 50/50! Someone will always be giving and taking more than their share. This is also why if you're a believer, it's important to get and keep God at the head of your relationship. Give Him all the power, let Him lead, and you both follow His will.
"I gave him all of that so he could feel comfortable in the company of my peers."
Okay, so Mary has been the -ish for a long time now. Waaaaay before she met Kendu. So she finds herself falling in love with this man who's "not on her level" and what does she do? She starts giving him access to everything! Makes him her manager so he has the power to make important decisions regarding her career, probably access to her bank account, definitely access to all her close celebrity circles, and most importantly her heart. And for what? So he can feel like "the man" when he's around her friends? So he can leave her for some young chick 10+ years later?
Let this be a lesson to us all. There is nothing wrong with dating someone who doesn't make as much money as you or have the same notoriety. What is important is that you BOTH feel confident about your positions in life and care more about what you two think than the outside world. If you've found this great person with "potential", but know deep down inside that if they're in the very same spot in 3 years, you're going to resent them, then leave that relationship now! Save both of you further heartache. However, if you find someone who you love and feel confident that you will love them as is, even if they never change, love them hard! Even if they never get a promotion, or go back to school, or quit smoking weed, or you fill in the blank! The truth is people change, but we never know if it will be for better or worst. Only you can decide what you can live with long term.
"I definitely feel empowered. I have to handle my own business (now). I escaped."
I am proud of Mary! I didn't wish this situation for her. It's wack that some of you think she makes better music when she's struggling, but I just want the best for her. It sucks that such heartbreak had to push her to empower herself, but that's usually how it happens y'all. It's when you meet adversity that you gain the most strength. I don't think there's anything wrong with having a manager and letting someone guide your career. However, you also need to make sure you keep your hands in everything and you follow your head and heart in all decision making. When you're about to make a decision, intuition is real! Use it! Ya'll saw Mary in that Burger King commercial, singing about a Whopper. I have to believe she wasn't following her intuition there.
"You gotta love yourself, if you really want to be with someone else. You gotta feed yourself before you feed somebody else. You gotta stay open and don't be foolish, cause everybody don't mean you well."
So this is one of the new single's Love Yourself featuring Kanye West. First of all, this song beats. If you listen to it and don't move, something's wrong with you. More importantly, the words are on point. Self-love is so essential! Self-love pushes us past fear, low confidence, stress, anxiety, poor body image, shame, pain, break-ups, and even divorce. Get you some!
Mary is pushing her way through the pain and now she knows her true strength. I'm sure she's also surrounding herself with positive people these days. If you're reading this and no else has said it to you today, I'm proud of you too sis! Keep shining!
So, have you heard the new album? What's your favorite Mary song? Leave a comment or share this post using your favorite social media site below.