“How many burdens of his boyhood will you carry for your comfort, despite yours? How many untrustworthy situations will you jump over, with an uncertain hope that maybe he’ll grow out of putting both of you in them? How many of your satisfactions will you facilitate while yours are left unaddressed?”
These are the questions I ask myself when my girlfriend tells me. “I bear with him, because he is my ride or die.” “You don’t know what we’ve been through.” “This is a ride or die type of relationship and you wouldn’t understand,” she says.
Truthfully, when I watched Love and Hiphop Atlanta for the first time, that’s when the concept of ‘Ride or Die’ rubbed me wrong. I winced at Mimi’s semi-emotional scene with the rest of the world as she poured her heart out to K.Michelle about Stevie’s baby fiasco with Joseline. Part of me wanted to feel sympathetic for her, I mean no woman wants to hear that her man has gotten someone else pregnant, but then again was Stevie even qualified to be called anyone’s man at all? I mean his penis pretty much seemed to be public property. Then, I thought woah, Mimi was way too calm. This probably wasn’t the first time that had happened. *sigh*
Ride or die chicks have been around since the beginning of time, Bible days if you will (go read the story of Sarah and Abraham if you need proof). Before they were known as “ride or dies”, they were simply known as women who stood by their men and didn’t dip out at the first sign of stormy weather. Somewhere around the 2000s (i think), we were introduced to the term “ride or die chick”, and since then all hell has broken loose. Good women who once stood by their men in the face of normal adversity such as financial hardships, sickness, etc. were now being expected to toss all of their God-given sense out of the window and stick by their man no matter how ridiculous the foolishness is that he brings to her doorstep. This term has been marketed and romanticized by music, novels, and television to the point where it is sickening. Women eventually began to proudly rock their ride or die titles as if it were some Girl Scout’s badge of honor, which was no different than writing “I’m a fool” across their foreheads because riding for a man through any and everything is downright foolish. Every woman should draw the line somewhere.
Women have many different reasons riding with their men through the craziest of situations, the most sincere reason being love. Let’s go back to Stevie J and Mimi. While I believed that Mimi loved Stevie, I couldn’t help but think that there had to be another driving motive accompanied by love that kept her stagnant in that relationship. The disrespect that Stevie demonstrates over and over was unlike anything I had ever witnessed before.
What I will say is that the man who came up with the “ride or die” philosophy is absolutely ingenious. He’s convinced women world wide to give their all only to receive crap in return. Sticking by your man through hard times is one thing, but allowing him to make you his fool is something else. To be a good woman who stands by her man is admirable, to be a ride or die is foolish. Sometimes staying isn’t what makes you strong, but knowing your worth and deciding that you won’t tolerate abuse or disrespect. People do make mistakes and forgiveness is important, but once a mistake becomes a habit it is time to reevaluate.
Think straight ladies!