I’ll Be There For You?….

Maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates, and guys are just people to have fun with.

Candace Bushnell

I wouldn’t call myself lonely but I do often find myself without the right person to share certain news with.

Growing up watching shows like Friends and Sex and The City I always expected friendship to just happen. I’d be doing something I like and a girl/boy with similar interests would approach me introduce themselves and Voila! Friends!

It turned out to be so much harder than that.

Even during school when friendships should’ve been easy to make and keep. I always found myself sort of “sitting on the sidelines”, the third friend to a group of two close friends, the one that walks behind the rest of the group. The Michelle to Beyonce and Kelly.

I’m one of those kids that’s slow to warm up to anything. I need a good 6 months before I can let my guard down and be myself around people.

My issue is that I want to have more casual friendships, I know how to go about it. But I’m terrified that I’ll get rejected.

The idea of being upfront with my personality to people I barely know fills me with anxiety. The idea of sharing elements of my life with friends also fills me with anxiety.

True friendship requires a level of intimacy that I haven’t figured out yet outside of romantic relationships.

My favourite part in Sex And The City is when Carrie Bradshaw and co realise that throughout their romantic relationships with men the only constant was their relationships with each other.

Your friends are your chosen Family, they’re meant to encourage, love and support you. Tell you when you’re moving mad and need to fix up, laugh with you and at you.

My biggest issue with female friendships or at least the way they have been presented to me is that there seems to be no room for individuality. The second you disagree with your girl you’re an opp. We shy away from confrontation and resort to backstabbing and chinese whispers.

Using Sex and The City as an example Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte were four really different women who as individuals, bettered themselves and, as friends, they bettered each other. Sex And The City was about four friends acting like necessary mirrors for each other through various stages in life. 

And that’s what friendships should be about. It’s not about finding similar people; but, like-minded individuals who have minds and opinions of their own.

I want to be an individual and still manage to maintain friendships with people that are different to me but, I’ve created a lot of obstacles for myself in my head.

I assume that if people learn about certain elements of who I am they’ll see no reason to pursue a friendship with me.

I’m bisexual so I tend to shy away from making friends with people that are super Christian to avoid the eventual head butting should the topic of the LGBTQ community come up.

I’m black so I avoid forming friendships with my white colleagues because I hate having the inevitable “race” discussion with them. Watching them get uncomfortable at the mention of the word “black” and having to explain why they can’t say/sing/ rap/ utter/ breathe the word Nigga.

I’m a gamer and a lot of girls find this childish so I don’t talk about that part of my life with women. The only time I mentioned it to a close friend she called it ” niggerish” ….

Niggerish…

I feel like if i were to present the entirety of my personality people would run for the hills.

On top of this the older we get the harder it is to navigate friendships. A lot of us realised that we were friends with certain people only because we were mandated to be in their vicinity for large periods of time.

Once you add Adulting to the mix ( work, relationships, moving, kids) you find that you have less time for these kinds of people.

If you’re a regular reader you’ll know that I relocated to Manchester less than a year ago. After I relocated I had to take stock of my familial relationships and friendships. I found a large amount of them to be lacking, extremely one sided and or I couldn’t point out what it was that I was getting from them.

It’s because of this that I’ve found myself lacking the right person from time to time to tell certain things but, this hasn’t been a completely bad thing.

I’ve found that dropping certain friendships has allowed me more time to spend with people that bring me joy. I’ve unintentionally used Marie Kondo’s home organisation ethos on my friendships by holding on to people that β€œSpark Joy” while decluttering my life of everyone else.

I essentially threw all unnecessary relationships in the bin and kept it moving.

One of my favourite Controversy Queens Slumflower wrote a book called “What A Time To Be Alone” and it centered mostly around romantic relationships and how gaining independence from seeking out love for the sake of love can be a freeing experience. She talks about how relationships need to add value to your life or you’re just better off alone.

I think that a lot of us should apply this to who we choose to call our friends as well. I’d even argue that there should be a larger focus on happy platonic relationships than romantic connections.

But, alas..

I can count my friends on one hand. But each and every single one adds value to my life and I add value to theirs in different ways. There are definitely gaps of loneliness but they just help punctuate the ugly laughs, the tears, the fights and the moments of vulnerability.

Quality over quantity…

xoxo Tawana

#StayAtHome Coping With Corona

You know that effervescent feeling you get when you successfully annoy a loved one. You say something that triggers them to the point of no return and you watch them lose it?

Hi! Before you read this Please delete that whatsapp chain message that your Mums, Cousins Aunts friend sent to you from your head and visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ for ACTUAL FACTS on COVID 19 in the UK

In this post I will demonstrate to the audience that there is an upside to being cooped up in the house either by yourself or with your *ahem* loved ones.

If you didn’t already know I live in a flat with my significant other. We both work 9-5(ish) but don’t mind the idea of working from home as both our roles allow us that privilege for the most part.

He’s already working from home but I am still required to go into the office πŸ™‚ – I won’t comment any further because I’d like to keep my job.

HOWEVER!

I will say that it’s super duper dumb to make us stay indoors on the weekend and then go back for a further 5 days into the world and continue to breathe on each other and spread this deadly virus because capitalism.

There’s a lot going on in terms of the government and UK society as a whole trying to cope with this but the constant news updates, conspiracy theories , Wetherspoons declaring we are all overreacting and refusing to shutdown, not being able to find chicken and pasta in the shop…..

I am an anxious wreck when I leave my house and its not helping that I’m not allowed to buy more than two bottles of wine at a time anymore : ( …

Luckily, as I was meant to be in Tenerife for a friend’s birthday that Aunty Rona cancelled I have a few days off work to lounge around and calm down. So I’ve tried to make my home a Coronavirus chat free environment to a reasonable extent to protect my mental health.

Here a A Few Helpful and Unhelpful Tips to Get You Through Quarantine/Self Isolation.

  1. DELETE THE NEWS APP ON YOUR PHONE!

Those hourly and breaking news updates from your news app aren’t good for you. Knowing what the exact number of cases and what the death toll is does nothing expect give you UN-peace of mind.

I had the Sky News App up until today when it flashed up to tell me that an 18 year old had died from the virus.

However, when I opened it up there was no article confirming the info in the notification.

Obviously I went on a Google search rampage to confirm the news with other outlets but I wasn’t able to confirm it and now I am paranoid that the powers that be are hiding young people’s deaths from us πŸ™‚.

Another good reason to delete it is that you’ll be getting scary Corona updates AND the normal news.

E.g:

Need I say more?

2. VIDEO CHAT YOUR MATES AND S/o DURING AN ACTIVITY.

The hardest part of self isolation/quarantine is the lack of face to face human contact. I look forward to my weekend drinks/parties etc with my friends and family. You can’t substitute that contact with a phone call or a texts and even normal video chats wont cut it.

So I’ve started “booking” activities with my friends. Instead of just a random call we actually make a plan lets say 1-2 hours to do something together while we’re on video chat.

If you’ve ever been in a long distance relationship you will be a pro at this

Last night my girl and I FaceTimed each other whilst we were playing Sims 4 – we ended up being on video chat for almost 3 hours talking about what we were doing in game, sipping wine and doing our usual gossip and cackling at our wayward jokes.

Not my prefered Saturday night, but I stayed home as per NHS guidelines, had fun, got tipsy all with a bare face and fluffy socks on.

3. “Reconnect” with Your Loved Ones

You know that effervescent feeling you get when you successfully annoy a loved one. You say something that triggers them to the point of no return and you watch them lose it?

Well you have all the time in the world to do this over and over again or plan prolonged annoyances for your viewing pleasure.

For example..( ANS STOP READING)

I recently learned that Ans’ NBA 2K20 rating is a 97 AND if he loses a SINGLE game at The Rec Centre his rating can drop super drastically.

I am a gamer but I hate sports games and first person shooters but I know enough about the game to play badly enough to lower his rating. So I’ve decided that if he keeps leaving his wet towel on my side of the bed I will be having midnight trysts on NBA and he will wake up to an 88 rating.

4. Make A Quarantine Playlist

If you haven’t got an old school playlist already now is a great time to make one. Nothing boosts your mood like listening to music from when you thought that 14 year old boy was going to end up being your husband, music from your favourite dance movie ( Step Up 3D for me) or music from the house parties your parents used to host.

(Whilst also figuring out that your parents should NOT have been playing those songs around your prepubescent ears)

Listening to my old-school hip hop and 2000s Pop and RnB is one of my usual go tos for a mood booster. I’ve found that sharing it with my loved ones is another good replacement for the lack of social contact.

Here’s a link to my playlist, now dance.

5. Masturbate

You’re not doing anything else with your hands………!

6. Take A Virtual Gallery Tour

There are only so many shows on Netflix to Binge Watch, so if you’re like me and you’ve watched Gossip Girl for the 4th time , why not try a virtual tour?

This again is something you can do on video chat with someone that you can’t see IRL

Some of the best galleries in the world have incredibly detailed online tours. No one can actually visit The Louvre in Paris right now, but you can Explore its world-famous halls in your pyjamas

The same goes for the Great Wall of China, The British Museum and The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

Go get some culture.

There are a lot of posts making the rounds on social media encouraging people to be productive during isolation, start a side hustle, learn a new skill.

In my opinion that’s all unnecessary. If you decide to stock up on 14 bottles of Merlot for 2 weeks ( 1 bottle a day ehehehe) and go about your normal routine then go off.

If you decide to launch a career on Tik Tok and start a new viral dance craze then go for it.

If you want to be the next Porn social media sensation and secure the bag by starting an OnlyFans then buss it wide open sis/bro.

As long as you listen to Bojo and stay indoors wherever possible whilst also protecting your mental health by doing what makes you happy (even if its 14 bottles of wine) then thats all we want for you.

Otherwise I’ve been hearing on the grapevine that their beating people up for leaving the house unnecessarily.

#StayHome Keep Corona at Bay or get your wig snatched today.

xoxo Tawana

BabyProofing YOUR 😸

I have no idea how this shit works. When i went for my appointment I told her my families medical history and due to heart conditions on both sides i was advised that the pill wasn’t for me.

My first encounter with Birth Control was when i was 14. My brother and i were hanging out with the maid in my bedroom when my Uncle (40 + at the time) and my Aunt came in to say hello.

Before he could get his Hellos out he spotted a generic pack of pills on my dresser. He looked aghast and audibly gasped. He asked me what they were for and before I could answer my Aunt saw what was causing him so much shock, laughed and told him to calm down, as they were Ibuprofen, not birth control.

I got it, i was 14 and he was worried that it was a bit premature for me to be having sex.

I didn’t actually get birth control until I lost my virginity when i was 20. Immediately after THE FIRST TIME i was paranoid because of all the stories i heard about condoms not working. Ross in Friends running around screaming about them working 97-98% of the time was running around in my head on a loop for like a week after.

At 20 as a first year student. I wasn’t ready to run this risk of that 3% chance of a baby. So I asked my sister about where to go and we went to the clinic.

See I’m a super paranoid anxiety driven person when it comes to my health. I can feel a cold coming a few days before, I can tell when a depressive episode is looming. Every-time i feel even a little off i prepare like a war is coming.

So the night before my walk in appointment id some super duper in depth completley unnecessary research into the different types of birth control and its effects on my mental and physical health.

IF YOU’RE SQUEAMISH, STOP READING BUT IF YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT YOU’RE PUTTING INTO YOUR BODY…

So, in the UK we’re lucky enough not to have laws around our reproductive system governed by Eugenics hidden as Pro-Life agenda.

This means we have plenty of options, non-hormonal and hormonal and most of us can acess them quite easily for low prices or nothing at all.

See the reason why I lost my V Card so late ( bar being super self-conscious) was because I asked questions. I spoke to anyone and everyone that i knew or at least thought was sexually active (Mum and Aunties included) and i heard ALL the Horror Stories. I knew what I was getting into when i decided to have sex and sometimes I wish I didn’t.

Lets Start with the one everyone knows

The Pill

I have no idea how this shit works. When I went for my appointment I told her my families medical history and due to heart conditions on both sides i was advised that the pill wasn’t for me and can I just say that you to that Nurse thank you so much. The pill is the most common Birth Control in my opinion because its literally just popping a pill then taking a break so it the easiest to deal with but its by no means the most effective.

In order for this wonderful invention to work, you have to take it correctly, never miss a pill day and pray to Jehovah that your body listens to it to get 99.7% effectiveness.

Lit right???

Wrong

1 IN 100 WOMEN WHO ARE ON THE PILL GET PREGNANT WITHIN A YEAR. There are approximately 4 billion women in the world. This means 40 million of you are going to get pregnant within one year of taking the pill.

And thats not all folks!

A friend of mine when I was at Sixth Form (22) told me that after she stopped taking the pill she produced BREAST MILK for a while after. I thought this was bullshit as you’re probably thinking as you’re reading this but i found this tweet that corroborates her story:

In conclusion I will never swallow The Pill a damned day in my life.

Next we have

The Injection.

I hate needles but for some reason, the first time I tried contraception I went with this option. At the time that I lost my V Card and decided to go on Birth Control, most if not all the women around me had the Injection.

The injection lasts for just over 3 months, it’s great if your doctor tells you that you cant use oestrogen based contraceptives but the normal side effects aren’t pleasant.

In the 3 Months that I was on this thing I experienced the following.: weight gain, headaches, mood swings, breast tenderness and irregular bleeding. My period lasted for almost 8 weeks at one point and I was miserable.

I went on it once and never went back. My peers told me that it gets better after the 2nd/3rd injection but 20 year old me wasn’t having it so I didn’t get my top up and continued to use Condoms with great success ( no babies).

I later found out that it can take up to 1 year for your fertility to return to normal after the injection wears off, so if you want babies soon. This one isnt for you.

UP next is the IUD or Intrauterine device because its Inna Ya Uterus.

This one is 99% effective, it lasts 5 – 10 years, can be put in at anytime even if you’re on your period and it can be taken out at anytime. It can however cause an infection when it first gets put in and it can be painful for a while after.

Personally the thing that I have with the IUD is that it can move around. Your body can literally push it out like a sneeze or a cough.

A friend of mine worked in the sex industry as an escort. She told me that she once had a man use a 1 hour of a 2 hour booking to complain about how when he is fucking his SO (Significant Other) he can feel her IUD.

For me the IUD was a viable option because it doesn’t use hormones, so no mood swings depressive episodes or low sex drive. But, the idea of the Infection, The pain AND the fact that your partner can feel the ting inside you isn’t a fair trade off.

Lastly we have

THE IMPLANT.

This is what I’m on and its great but it’s also a whole mess. My personal experience of the implant involved a 20 minute non surgical procedure where a matchstick sized little tube was put in my forearm.

A massive upside for me is you can have it removed at any time, and your natural fertility will return very quickly

I’ve been on the implant for 2 years. The worst of it is my periods are irregular and I get low moods right at the end of them. My sex drive also takes week long plunges a few times a year.

A few women have had different experiences. I don’t know anyone personally on the implant but a quick search lead me to an article about a woman the literally almost died because of that little matchstick.

But for one woman, what started out as an effective contraceptive turned into something of a nightmare, when she suffered a life-threatening consequences. Deborah Louise’s implant dislodged itself and began travelling around her body and into her heart. It later became stuck, blocking her pulmonary artery.

https://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/body/health/a21067201/contraceptive-implant-risks/

This innocent woman, took the implant and the advices of the medical staff available to her and she almost died!

This all sucks, but living life on the edge involves some risk. I’m still up and down about babies and any measure that I can cope with on a daily basis that stops those from popping out is fine by me.

There are loads of different forms of contraception. And I’ve spoken only about the ones I have been exposed to. If you’re in the UK and want more info on what you have available to you because you’re a knowledge seeking princess like I then head over to https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/contraception/what-is-contraception/.

No contraception ( except Abstinence) is 100% effective and most of what we have available has horrible side effects. I’m willing to take the risk because babies are not a part of my immediate future plan.

My mantra is if the D is worth the risk then take it πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ

XOXO

Tiniwana