People speak of loyalty as if it is something they’re entitled to. Ask for it, and stand in dismay, when you don’t receive it.
It is those same people who give away loyalty to anyone they like or need, and expect loyalty from everyone in return. But just because you offered your loyalty to someone, does not mean they should give it back to you so easily. Can cheap and easy loyalty be counted on? Of course not.
My loyalty is to be earned. Sorry you think that sounds egotistic, but my time is precious, and I won’t waste it being loyal to people who don’t deserve me. Who deserves my company? Only those who have EARNED my respect, earned my attention, earned my trust, and earned my loyalty. That takes years to earn, I don’t hand it to people on a silver platter.
I have a problem with transactional relationships, where something is offered and something expected in return. Let’s face it, most of our romantic relationships are transactional. Women are told to gift sex in exchange for commitment. We are told to prove our loyalty to a man first, and then if we are good enough, he might give us some commitment in return. Some day, eventually, when he deems necessary.
But transactional relationships are not pure, and they rarely serve women at all. You can be sure that when you trade anything in exchange for respect, you will be treated like a trader, and definitely not with respect. And here is where culture, tradition and religion fail women.
To be good women, we have to show proof of loyalty, obedience and commitment up front, in exchange that he will some day, after he has sewn his wild oats, offer us the same. We are told that if we invest ourselves into building a relationship, and only give sex to a person we are in a relationship with, that we will be rewarded with a marriage contract, a solid and stable future, and only then can we be whole and validated.
It is no wonder that some women are calling bullshit! Many of us still cling to the tradition of trading our unswerving loyalty in exchange for the fairy tale, but many are waking up and realizing we have been duped into trading since the dawn of mankind. On one hand we are told by religion, tradition, and academics that this is the only way for a woman to be, but on the other hand, women who have been “trading” have been called manipulative, whores, gold diggers, and soulless.
Do you see the unfairness, and the emotional damage this has caused woman? Yet this is the prescription we have all been sold, since the dawn of mankind.
I for one, do not trade. My loyalty is not for sale, and neither is my respect, my trust, nor a relationship with me. In short, you cannot buy my friendship, my commitment, nor my respect. Not under any circumstances. So what do I do?
I am fully aware of who I am as a person, my goals and ambitions, personal morals and ethics, my emotional and physical needs, and I know what I want. I have no problem stating it, and I have no problem receiving it. In that awareness, I am always evaluating people on whether they meet my current needs as a friend, a lover, a business partner, or a sexual partner.
It is perfectly OK if they are not meeting those needs at all. They are entitled to being who they are, just as I am. If we are not a match, I walk away. This is not cruel, nor cold, it is a sign of self-respect. I do not owe it to that person to try to teach them, change them, better them, or twist their arm into treating me the way I want to be treated. They owe me nothing either.
Getting to know someone is simply a time to assess a person’s characteristics and determine if they fit my needs. There is no trade of expected behavior in exchange for time and attention, no trade of physical intimacy in exchange for emotional intimacy, no trade of loyalty in exchange for respect.
Trust me, when you trade any of those things women have been taught to trade for centuries, you will be reduced to a trader, and you will lose your self-respect.
Because I know myself, I am always aware of my boundaries, my personal limitations, and my needs. Unlike some women, I am capable of having sex with a man I am attracted to, and asking for nothing in return. No, this is not some dating tactic where I pretend to walk away, only to pique his interest- that would be juvenile manipulation. Instead, it is who I am, it is me, meeting my physical needs without bartering sex for affection or commitment.
Living on my own terms, and not expecting any frog to turn into a prince, has lead to a lot of men offering me their time, affection and commitment too soon. You see, my lifestyle had unintended, though positive consequences. As a woman who does not trade, I have earned respect and attention from men who rarely give that to any woman. I have been offered marriage contracts, special treatment, undying loyalty, and much more from every frog I have ever kissed.
But here is where I differ from most women. Just because men offer me their world, does not mean I owe them my loyalty. After all, a frog is a frog, and just because he is dying to be my prince, does not mean that I have to take him. My standards remain high, because I am not looking to turn a frog into a prince, I am looking for a man who fits me. I am not looking to fit myself into a man’s world, he should fit seamlessly into mine. I am perfectly capable of assessing where he falls short, and not making excuses for him. I keep walking because I haven’t met anyone worth stopping for.
I recently met a man who may fit that bill. He is kind, open, authentic, supportive, secure with himself, honest, affectionate, giving, respectful, human. We recognize each other. No demands are being made, because we see in each other those things we have in ourselves. We play no games, in fact we text without reserve, communicate forthrightly, place all our cards on the table face up. Neither of us is worried about getting hurt. Why?
Because we are not trading. We give ourselves openly without expecting something in return. We ask for no respect, as each of us is respectable and fully capable of respecting people who have earned it. There are no demands of commitment, declarations of intentions, discussions of relationship status. None of that matters.
It is too early to speculate what this relationship is. We are both okay with it being nothing at all. It is simply two people enjoying each other’s vibe, each other’s time and affection. Every relationship, regardless of status or its level of seriousness should be like this. This is the definition of a relationship that is pure. It is free of needs, neediness, ulterior motives, speculation, insecurity, and free of the need to contractualize it.
It is also free of drama, relationship anxiety, mind games, completely detached from what experts claim is the proper way to manage a relationship. It is not being managed at all. We are both comfortable with it being undefined, ambiguous, status-free, in short, we are both enjoying it exactly the way it is. Two uncomplicated people, with their hearts wide open, giving everything, but trading nothing, is exactly how every relationship should be.