Saturday, August 18, 2007

3 Important C's in Relationships

One of the first things we learn in the kindergarten classroom is the alphabet. Well, in the classroom of relationships, there is an alphabet system too. However, we aren’t beginning with the letter “A”; we will focus on the letter “C” today.

The 3 important C’s in relationships are:

1. Consistency
2. Compartmentalization
3. Comfort


The June 2007 issue of Essence Magazine, contains an article entitled “Would You Date One of These Guys?” Each of the men featured in the article share their “Nice Guy Creed.” Alex’s creed: “You can count on me. If I say I am going to call, I call.”

One of the greatest indicators of a quality man or woman is consistency. Consistency is a great indicator of a person’s character. Consistency is a great indicator of a person’s integrity. Obvious indicators of consistency are:

  • If a guy says he’s going to call and indeed does call, that’s consistency. By the way ladies, if a guy says he’s going to call and fails to call, do yourself a favor, don’t call him (just had to insert that gold nugget).
  • If a woman’s personality style is open, sincere and kind even during times of stress, that’s consistency.
  • If a person has committed to a healthy eating and exercise regimen and does not deviate from their ritual of healthy habits, that’s consistency.

The aforementioned examples are positive indicators that a person is a good relationship prospect. However, as is true with anything in life, there are positive and negative aspects to everything.

So, following are some examples of negative consistency (notice I did not use the word “inconsistency”):

  • If a guy is consistently late to pick you up for dates or consistently fails to call as promised that’s negative consistency.
  • If a woman is engaging and funny sometimes but you are consistently on edge when in her presence because you don’t know when she may lash out or “go off on you,” that’s negative consistency.

If a person you are dating, especially someone you have been dating for a number of months, has not introduced you to the important people in their life, there is a chance you are being compartmentalized. I crafted this term – compartmentalized – one day as I reflected on a couple of my past relationships while writing my book, Lessons Learned: While Looking for Love in All the Wrong Faces. The important people in your beau’s life could be their parents, family, kids, or friends.

Sometimes geographical location may make it difficult to meet your beau’s family. However, ladies if you have been dating a guy for, let’s say – 6 months and you hear him making plans to attend a Super Bowl party (and this particular type of party is almost always attended by men and women) and you are not invited, you are probably being compartmentalized. Or, guys if you are living in a lady’s hometown and the holidays roll around and you are not invited to the family dinner, party, etc. you are probably being compartmentalized.

People compartmentalize significant others for various reasons. It’s possible that:

  • Your beau may be married or involved with someone else who family and friends have met and are comfortable with.
  • Your beau may not be considering you for a long-term relationship. By not introducing you to the important people in their life means they won’t have to explain your whereabouts when they break up with you.
  • Your beau may not have any friends and their relationship with their family may be strained or non-existent. If you are an outgoing, connected and loving person with healthy family and friend connections, beware – this type of person is the focus of another article .

Are you comfortable – really comfortable – around this person? Can you sit in a room with your beau and be totally at peace and comfortable if neither of you say a word for an extended period of time? Now, this may sound a bit morbid but what I’m about to say is a good measure of your comfort level with someone. Look squarely at your significant other. Then ask yourself this question: “Is this someone I want standing next to me as I stand over the grave of my parent?”

If you are not at your best physically or mentally, are you ok with this person seeing you at your worst – stomach virus, bad hair day, down in the dumps day?

Here’s the final question on comfort. Can you be content grooving with this person in a cardboard box under a bridge?

There you have it – the 3 Important C’s of Relationships.

Please feel free to use this article in your newsletter, e-zine or blog. However, the byline below must be included in its entirety.

Copyright Carmin Wharton, 2007