by Carla Thomas
I had more standards in high school at 15 than I’ve had in recent years. In high school, I would not date a guy who didn’t have a job, car or phone. Guys in high school knew this and they also knew that I wasn’t giving it up.
My Standards, Then and Now
Somehow in my adult life, more ashamedly recently than I’d like to admit, I was giving it up to men who couldn’t even measure up to the standards I had in high school. I felt like the Lupe Fiasco song, “Dumb It Down”, in that I would dumb myself down for company and some loving.
It is embarrassing looking at my past – who was this girl who dated some outright losers who were not worthy of her time or her body? Guys aren’t the only ones who think they can “save” hoes. I know I have been guilty of thinking, “I can pull a guy up from his bootstraps, I can change his thinking, change his situations, and I can update his resume to get a job”. I would convince myself that I shouldn’t think more of myself because if I did, I would be haughty, and that maybe this guy was just going through a tough time and needed some help. But who was helping me? Who was my helpmeet?
How did I go from the girl in high school who most thought was ridiculous – how I could expect a 15-year-old to have his own car and cell phone? – to the woman who dated grown men who didn’t have a pot to piss in?
My thinking was misconstrued and I knew I was too smart to have such dumb thinking. I know that my future husband could lose his job and I would have to be there for him and yes, there are going to be plenty of times where I will have to pray for him and over him and have to encourage him and inspire him, but there is a difference between a man who falls on hard times and a man who is more of a liability than an asset. My man must also be on my spiritual level as there is nothing worse than being unequally yoked. Once I would date guys who didn’t have a relationship with God, but now I’ve learned that someone who doesn’t know Christ is a dangerous person because God is the personification of everything I am looking for.
Let Me Upgrade You
I have learned after a series of unfortunate events that I was living beneath my privilege and God wanted to upgrade me. I had to stop wearing kitten heels and walk free in my ten-foot stilettos. I had to get rid of low-level thinking and dealing with some low lives. With God’s help and truly understanding that I am fearfully and wonderfully made, my choices are smarter as I pray for Godly wisdom in all situations. Now I strut like a rock star with my heel highs and even higher standards.
How have you compromised your standards, either back then or now? Do you struggle with setting standards?
I am a writer. I am currently working on my autobiography and a book series for teenage girls, which teaches them how to navigate middle school with style and grace. I have completed an original script that I’m shopping around in Hollywood, watch out Shonda Rhimes! More from Carla