Celibacy was never enough for me. Forgoing sex but still trying to connect with someone just really isn’t in my wheelhouse! I love sex, like love-love it and only giving that up but not everything else just seemed too tempting for me. Then one day I got an idea!
“I’m going on a man cleanse!” I tell me friend as she takes a big gulp of wine.
“A what now?," she asks as gives me a “Oh here’s one of Clarke’s hair-brained schemes again” type look.
“You heard me! A man cleanse. I’m not talking to them, sleeping with them, entertaining them, going on dates, none of it! I’m completely cutting off men.”
I grabbed my wine and gave her a “try me bitch” look. “Okay…” she says, “So how long is this going to go on for?” She was ready to get a “So I met a guy” text a week later.
“As long as I want it to! Or at least until 2019.” I started this ‘pact’/conversation in the beginning of July, so it gave me plenty for time to sit back and actually take some time away from men.
Her next question didn’t surprise me at all. I knew she was going to ask it. I think it just really made me step back and think about myself, my actions, and why I was really doing this that threw me.
“Alright, Clarke. Why in the hell are you going on a man cleanse then? You seem fine and stable with what it is that you’re doing, or at least that’s what you’re conveying on the outside. So what’s really going on?” I could tell she was serious because she set her glass of wine down and really looked me in the eyes.
“I don’t know what I want” I say looking down at my wine, “and I don’t mean like the type of guy I want or anything like that. I don’t know what I want for myself and it’s not fair to keep bouncing back and forth with these dudes that I hook up with giving them one thing to ‘expect’ and then coming in and messing with people's emotions, especially mine!”
For the longest time I have been living through my hoe phase, and maybe it’s not done, I don’t know - that’s why I’m on the cleanse.
People do juice cleanses to rid their body of toxins, I’m doing the same thing.
It’s not the men I’m with that are toxic, but the expectations I set for myself and them. I stepped back to realize, "Hmm... Maybe it’s not all the men in my 'relationships' that are the problem…" Maybe it is actually me!
I would walk into situationships playing the cool girl, the girl that only wants sex, only hit her up in the middle of the night and she gladly comes when you call. The always shaved, waxed, and tight girl. But, was that the girl I wanted to be? To me that screamed independence and that’s exactly who I am, an independent bad bitch, but is my heart craving more?
It’s been a little over 3 months since I've been on my man cleanse and I can confidently say that I have never been more focused on myself and what I want, how to get there, and have a clearer mind. I’m not constantly trying to get ready to please someone else and pass it off as being independent. I truly am, in every sense of the word, independent right now and I love it!
I’ll have to follow up on this once my cleanse is done. I'll let you know if I figure out what it really is that I want out of my relationships. Will I want to go back into my hoe phase with a different/same outlook or keep the cleanse going? So far, I’m unstoppable with my work! I do really miss sex though!
Clarke is the Director of Marketing for Black Honey Collective, co-founder of Hustle MKTG, and co-host of the Ask a Guy podcast.
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