Just Because You’re In A Relationship Doesn’t Mean You’re Relationship-Material

As some of you might not have heard me when I said it the 1st time, Ms. Tea’s “Tea Party” event was EPIC and full of intelligent, hilarious and real conversation such as a moment that helped me derive the idea for this particular post today. One moment that sticks out in my mind from that event, was when a young woman stated she doesn’t believe in “relationship rules” [such as the ones provided in Sherry Argov’s book “Why Men Marry B*tches”]. Her rationale was that she believes everyone should just be themselves, as opposed to adhering to someone else’s ideology of what they ‘should’ do to maintain a healthy relationship – which of course, I COMPLETELY disagreed with.

I didn’t agree with her based on the points I made HERE, and after I asked her “do you think you’re relationship material?” to which she replied “well, I’m married” which she said with a Charlie Sheen “Duh, Winning” face. At that point, the entire room erupted in laughter as if she truly showed me out by stating she’s married – but with a deadpan face, I sat and asked the question again “do you think you’re relationship material?” I guess what she, and many other people in the room, did NOT quite understand, is that having the ability to enter into a relationship or marriage, doesn’t automatically make you relationship or marriage material.

To be relationship material means you possess the adequate mental and emotional attributes to facilitate and foster a healthy and positive relationship with another person. To have the dating status of being “In A Relationship” takes nothing more than desperation, fear of dying alone, a dowry, being a beggar and not a chooser, kids, or just plain ol’ SETTLING. The fact is ANYONE can be in a relationship – hell, ANYONE can be in a LONG-TERM relationship, but that doesn’t mean they are relationship material.

Ask yourself seriously, how many people do you know in HEALTHY and TRULY HAPPY relationships? I don’t mean CONTENT or just SOMEWHAT SATISFIED, I mean they are really doing the damn thing when it comes to being a great boyfriend/girlfriend/husband or wife and understand the ideas of giving and taking to create a harmonious match. Now obviously, not everyone is going to be happy EVERY moment of EVERY day in their relationship, but the point is to zero in on the people who you know that are GOOD in their relationship – and the people that are FROWSY as HELL matched up in a horrible piece of TRASH union.

I bet you probably know A LOT of people who have NO business attempting to BRAG about being in a serious relationship as they presently are because they don’t possess the adequate traits needed to be in a successful relationship. Why, you ask? Because too many people see being in a relationship [married or dating] as the END or GOAL, instead of seeing it for what it truly is – THE START.

Starting a relationship or getting married is just the beginning of fine tuning your abilities to be a good mate for someone, not an example of how great of a partner you ALREADY are, and you should be committed to improving yourself everyday, not patting yourself on the back because you don’t have to go hunting for men like the 48 year old dancehall queen doing the splits in a pink tutu in the video light at some frowsy banquet hall to impress the young dudes there. Or being so content you’re not the old man in the club trying to rake in under-aged nani with your skin-tight, sack-hugging leather pants and Rick James Jheri cul shag, that you feel you don’t have to TRY to be a better man.

The fact is YES, you can be in a relationship and NOT be relationship material. BUT, you can counteract that by doing one simple thing: Treating everyday with your significant other as a new opportunity to be BETTER than you were yesterday.

This Is Your Conscience

When Lincoln Anthony Blades is not writing for his controversial and critically acclaimed blog ThisIsYourConscience.com, he can be found contributing articles for Uptown Magazine. Lincoln wrote the hilarious and insightful book "You're Not A Victim, You're A Volunteer: How To Stop Letting Love Kick Your Ass". He is also a public speaker who has sat on panels all over North America and the Caribbean.


  1. lincolnanthonyblades

    05/16/2011 at 1:38 AM

    Ladies & Gentlemen, Do You Agree That Being In A Relationship Doesn't Automatically Make You Relationship Material?

    Or Are There Different Scales Of Relationship Material That Subsequently Create Different Requirements To BE Relationship Material [Which We Can't Judge Off ONE Set Of Characteristics]?

  2. @MOTRenaissance

    05/16/2011 at 10:33 AM

    This should be obvious to most people… But it is not…

    This is the reason why I am not in rush to be in a relationship (It has to be epic…)

    And as a parallel, I am not quick to have any type of sex, because I am not in a rush to become a father

  3. Jason Howe

    05/16/2011 at 11:51 AM

    Total agreement regarding “being yourself”, if I was 100% myself I would not have gotten out of date one before women figured things out and ran away… I was MARRIED and I can honestly say I was not marriage/relationship material at that time in my life. I was selfish, immature, independent, and refused to compromise regarding who I was. And if I was forced to compromise I made sure she felt my unhappiness (sorry girl) … The ring was on her finger, but I was not marriage/relationship material. Oddly enough I am the go to guy when it comes to relationship advice, apparently its pretty good; I just never use to take heed of it myself.

    Regarding different requirements/levels, I guess it would depend on the long term goals of the relationship and if they are clearly defined by both parties. Two people about to get married and have children might have a different “level” then two folks who know they are together during their time in university before they both move back to their hometown/country.

  4. Drgray91

    05/16/2011 at 12:04 PM

    I don't think it automatically makes you relationship material BUT it's the equivalent to winning the qualifiers, before going to nationals.

    You obviously have the potential, the raw materials, so to say…

    *rereads post and thinks*

    Actually… I'd like to argue that it does. Now the previous post you referenced about relationships taking years of "working on us" I agree with many of the points made, HOWEVER I do think being in a relationship, does make you relationship material. Lest we forget the road to the relationship? The fact that the relationship is not a particularly good or happy one (something we can only judge with a wide tooth pick, because we will NEVER know the whole story) in my mind doesn't necessarily mean one party or both wasn't made from the right material, to many variables.The road to the relationship is just as hard as making the relationship work. In fact, it may be harder. (READ ON) Now before you pull your clown shoes out, think about it. The road to the relationship requires a level of honesty and real-ness with yourself that many don't have, it requires DISCERNMENT. Dating, courting, and all of that leave people with rose colored glasses and nostalgia about what MAY happen, rarely do I see someone who can discern whether or not it's all smoke and mirrors and adjust accordingly BUT many people don't have that factor going for them so now they are doing double the work, compromising on things near and dear to them (settling), they are remaining calm and collected at things that would have normally sent them into a fit of rage. If these aren't the indications of "relationship material" then maybe I'm wrong. But if they put in all that work to get to that sham of a relationship their in, they are mos def relationship material, all right. They just chose to squander their resources.

  5. The Black Canuck

    05/16/2011 at 2:20 PM


  6. MistaHarsh

    05/16/2011 at 3:04 PM

    Apparently 60% of marriages end in divorce so I guess a lot of people are not relationship material. Maybe good enough to reel them in but as you said you must always strive to be a better mate than you were yesterday you can't rest on your laurels.

    So what you bought her 6 dozen flowers in 08 what have you done in 2011?

  7. Vicky

    05/16/2011 at 3:18 PM

    I agree and co-sign with the first statement. Too many people have been tainted with materialistic, selfish and conceded qualities that they cannot get past them selves to fully love someone else. Relationship is work and a lot of compromise!

  8. Crystal Promo-Fernandez

    05/16/2011 at 4:34 PM

    you can be in a relationship and NOT be relationship material. BUT, you can counteract that by doing one simple thing: Treating everyday with your significant other as a new opportunity to be BETTER than you were yesterday.

    I hope everyone really takes this line in!

  9. grandgryph

    05/16/2011 at 5:21 PM

    i understand, but it is amazing that we have to remind ourselves of such things so regularly. what it seems like is that we are teaching ourselves the "new language of appropriate" without really taking on its principles. some people pressed with being better, grow resentful and create the illusion of better and work out their frustrations by taking his/her partner down a few notches. to them that's easier, more rewarding work. i think encouraging folk not to be eager takers and selective givers while, adopting more appreciation for "good" is better than "always strive for better". striving is potent, but has many, many side effects.

  10. ChloeRayne516

    05/16/2011 at 6:02 PM

    "and pulling out."

    You joking right??.. Do u know many chicks are walking around preggo due to the "Pull out"??


  11. lincolnanthonyblades

    05/17/2011 at 1:57 AM


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