Love/Relationships

I CAN’T LOVE YOU….I DON’T KNOW HOW

 Image by © Image Source/Corbis

Image by © Image Source/Corbis

They say you are a product of your environment.

They say, you only know what you are exposed to in your childhood.

They say, your childhood shapes your worldview and perspective about social norms & practices. It outlines your moral compass and alters very little during adulthood. There are exceptions to the rule. We’ve all heard the stories of the poor black kid in the Bronx graduating from an Ivy League school, beating all negative statistics. But we’ve also heard about the young lady who became extremely promiscuous, selling her body at 14 years old because well, that’s what her mother and her mothers mother did; she knows no other way.

Does the same logic apply to loving someone while single? If a man never received genuine, authentic, unadulterated love from his own mother, his first encounter with the opposite gender, how can he ever display the kind of genuine love to another woman? Is he even capable? Does he know how? Can love be learned or is it natural, spiritual?
The same goes for a woman. If her father has never been involved, never shown her what it is like for a man to cater to her needs out of pure LOVE (not LUST) how will she ever be able to tell the difference? If she grew up in a household where her mother was a victim of domestic violence, isn’t that how she would equate love later in life? We judge and look at the victim as “weak” but she may view it as strong because her mother stayed, endured the pain, and still lived. Wicked thought process right?

i can't love you 2I fear that is what is wrong in our community right now. Throughout the 70’s the drug (crack) epidemic, infiltrated into our society by the government, perpetuated the separation of the black family. Many children were raised in single family homes with the guidance and influence of one; either mother or father. It is imperative for a young child to be able to identify real love from both genders. It enables a emotional balance of sorts. This is not to say that single parents cannot raise children to be successful, educated, normal functional adults. But, their struggle will definitely look different.
Personally, I’m unsure if I’ve ever felt or given true love from/to a man. My father was an absentee and the relationship with my mother has been strained. Fortunately, that has not changed who God made me naturally. I have a natural caring, nurturing spirt with a soft spot for the underdogs. I’ve excelled academically, professionally, and spiritually, but my love life has been……interesting to say the least. I sometimes wonder if I’m at an eternal emotional/relational deficit due to my upbringing. I wonder, but I do not stay there.

It is vital to your emotional well being as a single woman to be able to hone in on where you may fall short in order to succeed at any type of relationship…be it professional or personal. Every man/woman is different and you can’t cookie cut “love” and make it fit. Take the time to get to know a person. You’ll never find a perfect mate, but if he/she is strong where you are weak and can accept you with all you faults and mishaps that’s a pretty decent start.
Be good to each other.
Chanel

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Chanel Crawford

Chanel Crawford