DATING is a game of chance — there are unknown rules, special codes and expectations that come with the experience. And the nature of dating makes it often difficult to navigate, especially if you don't have any practical knowledge to help guide you along.
Luckily for some of us, our mothers and grandmothers are vested in making sure that we are adequately equipped for the journey that could lead to “happily ever after”, with sage advice often passed down for generations.
This week, All Woman asked readers to share tips from their mothers or grandmothers that still resonate with them.
Abby, 25, social worker:
My mom told me to always have “vex money”. This is money that I can use to get home or pay for a meal in addition to getting home. That way, if we should get into a quarrel I can keep my dignity intact and head on home without having to depend on the man because he is my only option.
Mackeda, 27, sales representative:
My mom always warned me never to throw myself at people, but to take my time in getting to know them. The fact is, people can pretend, but their true character is revealed over time. I have come to realise the importance of this advice, especially when one is looking for something serious.
Kevin, 35, police officer:
My mother and grandmother always told me to make sure that my intimate partner is a woman I would want as the mother of my child. They also warned me against fathering children with multiple women, because that could lead to complications for everyone concerned.
Shaneil, 24, nurse:
My mom told me not to have sex with different men, because my husband won't enjoy what should be rightfully his. My grandma also said something that I live by: “One hand cyaan clap”, which is basically her way of telling me that I should always choose men who can help me, and vice versa.
Shawn, 40, construction worker:
My mother said a woman's character should be judged by her response when you are going through difficult times. Twice I saw that some women are with you not because of what both of you can do for each other, but what I could do for her. When things were slow I got called names, and when things were great she went about focusing on being pretty every day. Too many women nowadays are totally caught up in the materialistic world.
Shaneika, 32, event planner:
You don't need men at every turn. Let men and relationships wait. They will still be there after you get your education.
Oniqueka, 23, chef:
In love, never forget to love yourself first. If you ever find that you have to consistently be compromising your values, then it may just not be for you.
Shanara, 38, marketing consultant:
My mother always said: “If it hurts, then it isn't love.” I grew up around a lot of violence, so she often shared this with me for many years before I started dating. I knew how important it was for me to understand and to live by that, because one day my cousin said, after a good beating from her man: “Mi know a because him love mi why him beat mi.” My mom lost it. I wasn't allowed to mingle with that cousin the way I used to, and I could understand where my mom was coming from.