Bougie Confessions: Boy Scouts and Time Outs


I've received a few emails lately asking how I decide which slices of my personal life to share and which I decide to hold onto. Well, I never share anything I would be uncomfortable reading out loud. When it involves someone I care about, I usually check with them for permission. I write nothing I wouldn't share with my family (they all read). I'll share emotional intimacies if they're in the past or I'm in a good place with them. And I never (ever) share my personal physical intimate stuff. Some things are best left to the imagination. As for everything else... it depends. Sometimes I find my life amusing and I share. Sometimes I use BnB as my personal therapy. I purge and I'm done. Sometimes it's a sounding board. And sometimes like today, it is what it is. I just put it out there and see what happens next.

So if you've noticed a theme of exes and "friends" and trust issues... welcome to group therapy! J

For those unaware, I've been dating a guy named Derrick (or New Dude) for about five months. He has a best friend (Vince) who doesn't understand boundaries and a Shady Ex-Wife (SEW) who has now made it crystal clear that she wants back in. My threshold for drama is fairly low and my patience for "friends" that don't have your (or my) best interest at heart is near the non-existent level.

There is one particular flaw of New Dude's that is hard to overlook and overcome. It's a fatal flaw in that... it's not really a flaw until put into context. New Dude is... a Boy Scout.

Not just in the literal sense that he was a scout with honors and badges and whatnot but also in the more ephemeral, figurative sense of BoyScoutiness. He's a genuinely good and kind person. But wrapped up in the goodness and kindness is the need to be liked by all. He simply cannot be the bad guy. He is hurt if he feels that his words or actions have hurt another unless they overstep and even then... he wants to forgive and move past it.

Admirable? Yes but problematic. And I must say, a little bit irritating. There are times when you have to put your foot down without being told to do so.

As those of you who have been around for a little while know we've had some drama with his friends and exes. And like the proverbial bad pennies, they just keep showing up. I've made my displeasure with the continuous reappearance of "negative outside influences" clear and repeated myself... twice.

So with that in context, a little over two weeks ago Derrick declared that he wanted all of us to be friends. Eyebrow arched and hand on hip, I asked - All of who? He said that referred to me, him, Vince and the ex-wife. Seems they have both been in contact with him and their lives cannot continue Derrick-free. This is a problem. These are two people who have no good agenda for him and nothing good to say about me.

My tone was snarky, "Hmm, the Vince that called me twenty kinds of b*tches and you had to punch him out? The ex-wife that called me forty kinds of b*tches and said you were better off with her? These should be my friends?"

"I just think it will be easier if we all make an effort to get along."

So I tried to be calm and mature asking what this "friendship" would consist of. By his explanation, it sounded like them spending a whole heck of a lot of time around us. Um... no thank you. To which he replied, "We should be the better people and lead by example."

Calm and mature went out the window. I thought I already was the better person and I know I led by example by not having their crazy asses jailed for breaking into his home. Vince was one situation. The ex was something else. I could see no reason beyond the obvious for why he would want her around in any capacity. And despite his repeated assurances that he does not want her in "that way", I'm not sure I'm going to get past it. I've been in relationships where I wasn't sure if I was priority 1A or 1B and I'm not about to be put in that situation again. And only because I'm loathe to give out ultimatums (either she goes or I go!)... I put him in a time-out.

Yes, I placed a grown-assed man in the middle of a relationship on a time-out. It was either take a step back or tell him I was done. So I asked for a few weeks where he should take some time to really think about his priorities and I would do the same. At the end of the four week period (yes, I put a time limit on it), we'd sit down and decide what's next. He was (and is) not happy. As I said, he likes everyone riding rainbow-striped unicorns in lavender clouds singing O Happy Day. I need to hear and see something different than what I'm currently seeing, damn the unicorns.

The first week of the time-out, my sister was here and we ran all over town. The second week (last week), I was not well. This week I'm playing catch up and next week I'll be in South Florida helping BougieSis relocate. So we'll see when I return just how all of that plays out. It may be that I'm getting less spastic about relationships but for some reason, I'm not freaked out (yet) and I'm fairly good with whatever comes next: good, bad, or in between.

BougieLand, I don't really have any questions for you today. Though you can feel free to share thoughts, insights, comments, common experiences. The floor is yours.