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Monday, September 30, 2013

7 Signs Your Man May Be Cheating

Recently, I received a Dear NwaVic letter from a married woman who feared her husband may be cheating and wanted to know if the things she had been noticing about him indicated that he was having an affair. Because the letter was too detailed and the situation seemed direly complicated, I didn't feel comfortable publishing it. However, I promised the writer that I would do a post on general signs that your man is being unfaithful.

These signs are not absolute. As with most things, there could be alternative explanations to these behaviors. For your sanity's sake, for every sign, I'd give you a Plausible Alternative Explanation (PAE) for said behavior. However, if you notice any of these signs, it may be time to "shine your eye" (insert Nigerian accent). In other words, these signs are indicative of the need to pay close attention to your man. Just follow your instinct. As women, don't underestimate your inner voice. Now, don't go snooping in his phone if you're not ready for what you'd find. And don't go secretively following him and then blame NwaVic. Justsaying.

Okay here you go;

1. Change in His Relationship with His Phone/Email: This is one of the surest tell-tale signs of a cheating man. If normally your man doesn't care too much about his phone and easily leaves it within your reach, and all of a sudden, does any of the following, he's probably up to something...
-puts a lock/password on it,  or
-starts to ensure its always in his pocket or hand
-sleeps with it by his bedside
-takes it everywhere with him, even into the shower
-turns it off when you're together, claiming he doesn't want to be bothered when he's with you
-leaves the room to answer calls
-jumps or acts startled when you pick up the phone, even if only to hand it to him.

Cheating has become high tech. There's even an app that makes pictures and texts to disappear after a certain time. Notice the new apps he is downloading on his phone.

PAE: If he has a new phone, he may still be so fascinated by it. He could also be planning a surprise party/engagement for you.

2. Changes in Behaviour: A cheating man, especially one with a conscience, will feel guilty. One way to offset this guilty conscience is to justify it. In order to do this, he'll try to find fault in the little things that you do. If you notice your man has started picking unnecessary fights with you or gets upset at you easily, he's stepping out. Starting fights is his way of finding a good reason to leave your house early or not talk to you for a day or two. This gives him time for his escapes. On the other hand, if he gets overly nice to you, he's trying to make you so comfortable and blind you to any signs of his extracurricular activities.

PAE: He may be going through a quarter/mid-life crisis. He may be stressed at work/school. Perhaps, he's broke. We know how men get when they're broke. If I didn't know any better, I'd say he may be on a "man-period". In that case, excuse him-it's his time of the month. LOL 
3. Rejects Your Affection: Some men are generally not affectionate and don't subscribe to the PDA generation. But if your man was once all over you both in private and in public and is all of a sudden not interested or always too tired for you, he's probably getting it somewhere else. If he's now hesitant to hold your hand in public, he is probably worried that someone else is watching.

On the other end, some cheating men experience a higher level of sexual appetite when they're cheating. If all of a sudden, he's doing things to you you never knew he was capable of, without any discussion, you have to wonder where he is learning them from. For example, if your man is a one-style predictable kind of lover, and all of a sudden he is flipping you over all kinds of ways, his new "ventures" has probably made him more confident in his abilities. You might like it, but don't enjoy it ignorantly.

PAE: He may just be watching more porn. lol

4. Disappearing Acts: When you spend a good amount of time with someone, you get to know their typical schedule. You know what time they work, if at all their job requires overtime or traveling, if and what time they go to the gym, if they regularly or rarely have a boys night, and if they like to eat out, or club out a lot. Once your man starts cheating, you'll notice various changes in his schedule. There will be a lot atypical absences. Commonly, there's the "I'm working late". Then there's the " have to travel a lot for work" or way too much time at the gym, all of a sudden.

I briefly dated this guy long distance my freshman year in college who would disappear on Thursdays and won't call me till Sunday. When I'd ask where he was, he had various reasons most of which I knew were plain old crap. He was on the basketball team in his University and would often claim they had practice all day and didn't have their phones on them. For three days? Feed that to the dogs. Needless to say, that relationship didn't last long.

And then there was the guy who disappeared in an event where he was with his girlfriend.  They arrived together but then drifted apart to chat with their friends, as is normal in big events. She was dancing with her friends when she noticed she hadn't seen him in a bit. For almost an hour, she couldn't account for where he was. It took a year for her to find out that he was talking to another girl in the back staircase. Smh.

The key here is inclusion. Your man could easily take up a new hobby. For example, if he wants to spend more time at the gym or go out to more events and genuinely invites you, no need to worry. But if all these disappearing acts are solo ventures, look harder. When in doubt, offer to come on a sudden trip or outing and notice his reaction.

PAE: Maybe if he thinks you nag too much, he's escaping you. I know a guy who's wife didn't want him to go on vacation with a particular male friend because she thought the friend was promiscious. He said he was traveling for work, then went on a boy's trip with the friend and a few other guys. Such actions are still inexcusable but at least he wasn't having an affair.

5. Unexplained Random Occurrences: Men are horrible at cheating. This is a proven fact. If they are cheating, even if it takes days, weeks, months or even years, eventually they'll get sloppy. Once, one of my girlfriends was looking for her phone which fell into her boyfriend's couch. Instead, she found a piece of blond hair and she's not and never has been blond. Another of my friends went to her boyfriend's house and found that the pictures of them on the fridge were on top of the fridge. She dismissed the thought and put it back. From then on, she noticed that the first time she visited after being out of town, the pictures would've moved. Another girl I know found scratches on her boyfriend's back. As you'd imagine, all these men explained these occurrences away, but then, all these girls later found out the men were cheating.

Other random eye-brow-raising occurrences include random charge on credit card for a hotel or restaurant you never went to, random note in pocket, weird encounter with someone in public who calls you by a different name, and/or unusual familiarity with him at a place he's never taken to you to.

When in doubt, casually ask for an explanation and watch his response. Defensive, inconsistent or tense responses are dead giveaways.

PAE: Maybe his cleaning lady moved your picture to clean the fridge. Maybe he had an unusual rash/skin irritation on his back.

6. Appearance Change: If a man starts to desire more attention from other women, his physical appearance would improve, for the better. He is all of a sudden loosing a lot of weight, dressing better, taking care to comb his hair, shave and working out more. All those things you've been trying to get him to do for years, he's now doing on his own, without you. This new pride in appearance is a tell-tale sign he's vying for another woman's attention. Now there's nothing wrong with self-improvement but again, the key here is inclusion. If he's doing all these, especially when he is going out without you or your input, its an infidel's cry to be caught.

PAE: He could have a health issue that makes him concerned about his weight. But then, the key here is inclusion.

7. Sudden & Overt New Interest/Fondness: Sometimes, a cheating man hides in plain sight. If your man suddenly starts to name-drop a particular co-worker or new friend too frequently for comfort, its time to take a deeper look. One of my coworkers told me she knew her husband was cheating when she started to hear too much of "Angela said". Once, he had taken up a new interest in a Housewives of Atlanta, a show he had previously sworn off. His reason? "Angela was talking about it today. It sounds interesting". Turned out, he was watching it just so he could have things to talk about with Angela.

PAE: Maybe he just has an innocent crush on a co-worker, which sometimes is unavoidable. This one you have to nip in the bud no matter how innocent it looks because if care is not taken, it'll blossom into an affair. Make jokes about the person of interest and see his reaction. If he gets defensive of her, shine your eyes o.

Like Looney Tunes would say, That's all folks!

If there any signs you've personally experienced, please don't hesistate to share. And as always, write me at anytime.

Stay Inspired...

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

7 Things You Should Know About Relationships

Thanks to my friend Naa, I came across these articles from Relevant Magazine and couldn't help but share. It's a two-part series. The first part is for the ladies and the second part is for the gents. Here you go.
 7 Things Every Woman Needs to Know About Relationships

I once fell headfirst into dating a “nice” drug dealer.

This came right after I heard a talk on the “you might be called to singleness” mantra coupled with the Christian “modesty pledge."

It was a Sunday afternoon in a room that badly needed re-carpeting. After hearing a long talk about from an older, single woman how she actually did enjoy her life because it was God’s best for her and we needed to accept that singleness might be God’s plan for us too, I decided there was no time for standards in my dating relationship. Doubtless, she had excellent intentions, but they were lost on me.

Mr. Nice Drug Dealer and I didn’t last long, because he was just one of many men I tried to fix, to heal, to save. My love never changed him. He was, however, my last hurrah in the camp of believing lies about relationships and having no standards for my dating life.Years into marriage and a whole host of dating mistakes (and one nice drug dealer) behind me, here are some helpful things I’ve learned about relationships—often the hard way, but learned nevertheless.

Here are 7 things women should know about relationships:

1. Your love isn’t changing him. A misunderstanding of this truth is why we date bad boys and “flirt to convert.” We love a good Beauty and the Beast story with notions that our love will help our man turn from his old ways and embrace purity, maybe sobriety and even Jesus.

But the truth is, romantic love doesn’t transform people. If your man has a millstone tied around his neck and is sinking to the bottom of the ocean, you're not going to be able to swim him to the surface just by latching on. Eventually, you’ll be at the bottom of the ocean with him.

2. Men want to feel needed. It's important to be independent and capable of looking after your own needs, but if that turns into carrying a “I'll never need a man” chip on your shoulder, you may drive him away. Men like to know they are needed in your life. Whether it’s fixing your car, providing financially for you or solving a problem, men actually like being asked to help. Create some space in your relationship, give up some control and don't be afraid of giving him the opportunity to help.

3. He already has one mother. The trash he won’t take out, the football he won’t stop watching, the shed he won’t organize. It’s easy to calmly remind him before work, after work, before bed, and then start all over again the next day—growing just slightly more pointed each time. Early in my marriage, I believed asking my husband over and over to do something in a nice voice didn’t count as nagging—but this is not the case. Nagging produces negative results. Focus on the positive in your relationship and pick your battles.

4. You deserve a lifetime commitment, not just a social media one.The truth is, many women don’t believe they deserve any better than the occasional text or a late-night rendezvous. If you want a lifetime commitment, you need to set your standards accordingly. A late-night “Out tonight?” text? You were made for more than pathetic attempts at dating. Hold out for the guy who will be in your life for the long haul.

5. Manipulation will sour your relationship quickly. We cry or tell half-truths to make the situation come out in our favor. Winning an argument or getting your way does nothing to better a relationship—and may in fact worsen it. Be forthright, and learn to navigate conflict through healthy communication and compromise.6. Men are not mind readers. We all know this in theory, but a lot of times, we act as if the men in our lives should know exactly what we’re thinking without us having to tell them. If you want your guy to tell you you aren’t fat or to spend more time with the kids, ask him directly. Give him a chance to respond to your desires instead of expecting him to read your mind. Use words, instead of stomping around the house or pouting.

7. He’s not your last chance. Many women stay in bad relationships, falsely believing he’s their last chance. Whether we think we’re too old, too long-gone, too messed up or have put too much time into a relationship—it’s commonplace to stay with a guy because we think it’s either him or being alone for the next 30 years. I know the statistics, I know how hard it is to find a good man—but don’t buy into the lie that a mediocre relationship is your last chance.

If you walk away from this post with one nugget, know this: Love isn’t hopeless. Don’t believe for a moment that God doesn’t see the heartache in your relationships, in your marriage, in your singleness. It is never too late to start making decisions now that will affect your relationships in the future. Hope will never disappoint.

7 Things Every Woman Needs to Know About Relationships

When my wife, Ruthie, and I were dating, I knew she was getting antsy about engagement. I was deeply in love with her, couldn’t imagine my life without her really and wanted to indicate, or hint at, my plans for the future.

So one beautiful fall day on a drive through the North Carolina mountains, I attempted to compliment her and let her know I was in it for the long haul—to put her mind at ease in a way. But what I actually did was the opposite.

“You have such sturdy legs. I really hope our kids have sturdy legs like you.”

The look on her face told me everything I needed to know. My bride is not speechless very often, but her face was contorted somewhere between a laugh and a cry—and nothing was coming out of her mouth.

“STURDY?!?!” She finally exclaimed.

Then added, “What a terrible way to describe a woman! I am NOT sturdy.”

I tried to dig myself out of the hole by making excuses—saying I’d chosen the wrong word, insisting sturdy makes me think of a supermodel not woman’s softball coach, and telling her how beautiful her legs are—but really there wasn’t much I could do to recover from that comment.

My understanding of women has grown exponentially over the last several years, and thankfully I’ve lived to write about what I’ve learned about relationships. Maybe this list will save you from some relational pitfalls.

Here are 7 things every man should know about relationships:

1. Winning an argument may harm your relationship. In the middle of a “he said” “she said” disagreement, it’s easy to focus on being right. But in most cases, being right doesn't really, truly matter. It only boosts your pride. I don’t think you should roll over and admit defeat at the outset of every argument, but, in my experience, having the last word in an argument is rarely worth the relational turmoil it can take to get there.

2. What you do for her is never more important than who you are to her. Many men believe bringing home a large paycheck or climbing the corporate ladder means they are a good boyfriend or husband. But what I’ve discovered is what we do for the woman in our life—take her to dinner, fix her car, drop the kids off—is never more important than how we treat her. Are you compassionate? Kind? Do you listen to her? Do you treat her as an equal? Do you serve her without keeping score? Focus on your character and then worry about your paycheck.

3. A date isn’t a marriage proposal. For those of you scared of commitment, the purpose of dating is to get to know a woman, to see how you click relationally and determine if this is the sort of life-long relationship you want. We need to find the middle ground between treating dating like a sport and praying for months before we ask a girl to dinner. Try not to over think it. Dating is a practice round, not the national championship. You will make mistakes, but try not to take yourself too seriously.

4. Digital communication should always be leading to face-to-face communication, not taking away from it. I know rejection and vulnerability doesn’t feel as scary when you’re hiding behind a screen. It’s easy to use technology as a crutch, rather than a mechanism to fuel more face time. As a general rule, a text is not an appropriate way to a) tell her you love her for the first time. b) break up up with her or c) have an argument .

5. Words can be everything. Obviously, I learned this one the hard way. Men can be careless with what they say, or surprised when women take an off-the-cuff comment to heart. Examples: “I have nothing to wear” is not her asking you to step into her closet point out options. “Do I look fat?” only has one answer. And nothing about her is EVER sturdy.

6. Listening, not fixing, is often the best remedy to her problem. As you probably know, men tend to be too quick to try to fix problems their significant others are telling them about. Instead of trying to cut the conversation short by jumping directly to a solution, it’s helpful to ask our significant other what type of response she is looking for. Does she want us to fix, to get angry or to just listen? If you aren’t sure, just ask. It can dramatically improve your communication.


7. You are worthy of respect. But don’t demand it. Something inherent in all men is the desire for respect. If you are dating a women who does not respect you, it is probably time to get out before you become a doormat. But as men, we should never demand respect, because that is the fastest way to show that you are not worthy of it.

Rather, if you want to be a leader, start by being a servant. Make the coffee. Don’t keep score. Relationships are all about give and take, and it’s never going to be fair. There will be seasons that are more focused on her and then the reverse will be true for you. Whether dating or married, men need to understand that Jesus is the man to follow here. He did not huff and puff and demand that people follow him. Rather, He earned it through serving.

Relationships are complex, but if we can remember that the journey with the woman you love is the best part of the whole gig, that being vulnerable is not a sign of weakness but of courage and that the little things you do go a long way, you are in for a beautiful life together.

The authors made some great points? Right?

Stay Inspired...

Source: Relevant Magazine: here.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Red Carpet Fashion: 65th Primetime Emmy Awards

Last night, the 65th Primetime Emmy Award Ceremony took place in the Nokia Theatre in Downtown Los Angeles, California.  The ceremony itself, in my opinion, was boring. I opted instead for Breaking Bad, but not after I watched these lovely ladies show off. They really looked lovely! I want majority of these dresses in my closet!
Carla Gugino

 Linda Cardellini in Donna Karan Atelier
 Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Monique Lhuillier
 Kristen Connolly
Emilia Clarke in Donna Karan Atelier
 Sarah Silverman in Deadly Dames. Cost $60! Off the rack and she looked great!
Cobie Smulders in J. Mendel
 Julianna Margulies in Reed Krakoff
 Sofia Vergara in Vera Wang and Lorraine Schwartz
 Claire Danes in Armani PrivĂ©
 Elisabeth Moss in Andrew Gn
 Allison Williams in Ralph Lauren
 Ireland Baldwin
 Jane Lynch
 January Jones in Givenchy
 Malin Ackerman in Marchesa
 Lena Dunham in Prada
 Jessica Pare in Oscar de la Renta
 Allison Janney in David Meister Signature
 Julianne Hough in Jenny Packham
 Connie Britton in Naeem Khan
 Vera Farmiga in Theyskens' Theory
 Tina Fey in Narciso Rodriguez
 Kaley Cuoco in Vera Wang
 Carrie Underwood in Romona Keveza

 Jessica Lange in Escada
 Kerry Washington in Marchesa
 Laura Dern in Naeem Khan
 Cat Deeley in Armani
 Michelle Dockery in Prada
 Robin Wright in Ralph Lauren
 Amy Poehler in Basler
 Leslie Mann in J. Mendel
 Taylor Schilling in Thakoon and Stuart Weitzman
 Rose Byrne in Calvin Klein Collection
 Christina Hendricks in Christian Siriano
 Anna Faris in Monique Lhuillier
 Giuliana Rancic in Tadashi Shoji and Mikael D
Lily Rabe
 Morgan Saylor in Honor
 Sarah Hyland in CH Carolina Herrera
 Sandrine Holt in Honor
 Melissa Rauch
 Kate Mara in J. Mendel
 Julie Bowen in Zac Posen
 Anna Chlumsky in Badgley Mischka
 Ariel Winter in Lorena Sarbu
 Constance Zimmer in CHAGOURY
 Zooey Deschanel in J. Mendel, Chanel and Charlotte Olympia
 Alyson Hannigan in Marchesa
 Mindy Kaling in Edition by Georges Chakra
 Rob Marciano and Rocsi Diaz
Heidi Klum in Atelier Versace
Kelly Osbourne in Jenny Packham
Merritt Wever
Anna Gunn in Romona Keveza
Emily Deschanel in Houghton and Vegan Aldo
 Kelli Garner
 Brooke Anderson
 Maria Menounos in Zac Posen, Jimmy Choo, and Swarovski
 Brooke Burke-Charvet
 Katrina Bowden
Nancy O'Dell