I’m so glad blogs exist because Facebook isn’t always the appropriate medium to crack open your brain and let it pour. Although this was almost an FB post, thank goodness I refrained.
I refrained because everyone isn’t going to get it and that’s OK.
On this journey of entrepreneurship, I’ve learned that being “OK” is a suitable emotion. I’m OK with people not agreeing with me, OK with folks wishing I’d just give up on my life and live the one they want me live, and I’m OK that my vag’s dry spell for the last couple of months may very well extend to the end of the year.
I’m…OK, with it.
Love and entrepreneurship seems like two opposing forces, but if done well, can be something amazing. I’ve had an interesting experience thus far, trying it a few times to no avail; so, my laptop and I are still in matrimony as husband and wife.
It’s been a year since my last relationship and that was pretty much a disaster, for more reasons than I’m going to share here; however, that isn’t to say that love cannot be had or found being an entrepreneur, it’s not going to be as easy as the rest of your crew. There’s a difference between making team deliverables as an employee and making deliverables as the CEO. The accountability isn’t the same, the sleepless nights may not exist, the sacrifice of transitioning from extrovert to introvert is not a commonality, and finding solace in binge-watching the latest Netflix series as entertainment, alone, is no longer a choice but the only option.
The idea of it all is daunting and may discourage you, but the last thing I want is for you to be discouraged. There are so many success stories that outweigh the unsuccessful; however, I’m not one of them. But, what I can do is tell you what to look for based on the demise of my own relationship. There’s a lesson in each “failure” and trust me, if I can avoid any of you from succumbing to the fuckery, I will.
Spring of 2015, I decided to give this guy a shot.
He’d been commenting on my Facebook statuses, liking my Instagram posts, sliding through in my DMs — the blueprint of a man trying to court you via social. He and I were familiar with one another and although I was hesitant, I’d vowed to turn over a new leaf in the dating aspect of my life, so, I decided to give this guy a shot.
My ex is an entrepreneur, a serial entrepreneur, so I thought it would work because we had the same mindset, respective goals, that fire, the hustle, all the attributes women bosses seek in a man they’re looking to date. And it worked for a few months, then I noticed a shift when he noticed I started taking my business more serious. I’d ask his opinion about specific business questions, he’d give his expert opinion, and it felt good. He even worked on my first logo, helped me coordinate my first workshop and setup a promo site for my business.
It was cute.
Until I realized he thought he was the CEO of my company.
A person’s facade always melts off and, in time, my ex revealed his controlling ways, believing that his dusty ass he could shape and mold me into some “beast” of a businesswoman that played only by his rules. Some indentured servant rubric that “required” me to work during the hours he suggested, sleep during the hours he suggested, spend quality time during the hours he suggested, be home at the hours he suggested, be intimate during the hours he suggested.
Naturally, I rebelled and the push back became this unwarranted performance review of why I sucked as a business owner, with an attempt to force my hand to provide services that weren’t aligned with my vision, and criticize me for not listening to his “sound advice.”
Yes, folks, I caught a live one and had to throw that shit back ASAP!
A man who believes in your dreams will not smother you. He will support you and your decisions regardless if he agrees with them or not. There are five takeaways I gained from that relationship and other “situationships” that I experienced thereafter:
A man who is “anti-entrepreneur” will never understand why you work so hard
If I had a dollar for every guy who complained about me always being busy, I’d be able to reinvest it back into my business. It’s cool that your potential partner isn’t a business owner, but he has to respect that you are. If he can’t respect your time or the hours that you put into building your baby, you two will never be on one accord. Be mindful of the language your partner uses when you speak about your business and your ventures. His disdain for your independence will be heard in his tone and the words he chooses to use.
- Unless he’s ambitious, it will never work
You don’t have to own a business to be ambitious. Everyone should have goals and if your partner doesn’t have any, it’s not going to work. He (or she) must be working towards something tangible. If your conversation never includes a discussion of his five-year plan, keep it pushing.
- A man who is in pursuit of you, will come to you
Can’t make date night, if he’s interested, he’ll come by and bring the date you. A man who is interested and willing to invest in you will make adjustments. You don’t have to worry about always cancelling because he will make sure you don’t feel guilty about following your passion.
- Your partner will always respect your vision
He won’t try to change you, make you feel guilty for having sacrificed date night for a light bill, mock you because you’re living a minimalist life until you can afford to do more, hope/wish/pray you just get your head out of the clouds and work in corporate. He will always respect your hustle because that’s what attracted him to you in the first place.
- Your partner will be interested
Just as much as you are interested in his goals and dreams, he will be interested in yours. He won’t ask you “how are things” just to ask you because that’s what you asked him to do, he will do it because he’s genuinely interested. He wants you to win, just as much as you want him to win. He will attend your workshops, events, panel discussions, promote your posts on social and tag you in them, tell his friends about your work and encourage them to support you, refer clients, and place your work in the hands of someone who can evolve it into something bigger than what it already is.
The right guy will not pacify you, he will show you through his actions that your goals and dreams matter and are not just a small tidbit of you, they are what makes you awesomely beautiful.
Love and entrepreneurship is not a far-fetched idea, it’s work, trial and error just like anything else, but when the right one comes along and adds the sparkles on top of the cake you’ve already baked, it can be the best feeling you’ve ever felt.
I’ll let you know how it feels when it comes.
Vee is an adult novelist writing under the moniker L.T. Robinson. When she’s not purveying the perverse, she’s living her unicorn life as a content creator, editor and creative coach. You can find her on Instagram @theauthorlt and @shewrites_sheedits. More of her work can be found here.