The “T” Word

Marriage is an evolving thing. Most folks think you jump the broom and viola, that’s the end. I always believed marriage is like a new beginning. Even good relationships require work, but where do you draw the line from “we puttin’ in work” to “this thing ain’t gonna work?” It’s just a general question, don’t get alarmed, I’m not thinking about the “D” word. But in the wheel of fortune that is my marriage, another letter came up. Can I get a “T,” Pat? “T” for therapy, that is.

One day when wifey and I were “discussing” the lack of intimacy in our relationship (actually it was me saying, “there is a lack of intimacy in our relationship” as if she wasn’t aware that we don’t have sex. lol…) and she asked me if I thought we should go to therapy. My response was swift and authoritative.


So I ask this question to ya’ll, why are us colored folk so afraid of the “T” word? It seems to be taboo for us, while I know white people who go to therapy all the time (or at least all the white people I see on TV anyway).

I don’t exactly know why I am so against marriage counseling but it just seems weird to me. Inviting a marriage counselor into the mix is like bringing in a sweet ‘lil tenderoni for a threesome – it just doesn’t work. I think most intimacy issues stem from a lack of communication, so at the point when you have to bring in a third party to mediate a conversation between man and wife, I think that things become problematic.

It’s sorta like how the U.S. is supposedly trying to mediate a war between the Sunnis and the Shiites in Iraq and we all see how that is working. So is a marriage counselor supposed to leave a husband and wife with the tools to govern their own relationship, much like how the U.S. is supposed to teach Iraq how to govern their own country? It doesn’t really add up. Furthermore, a marriage counselor’s whole business is dependent on problematic relationships, so is it really in their best interest to help you? Or do they just want to keep you coming back? Seems like some serious bullshit to me. Or it could just be our pride… multi-ethnic males just have trouble taking a loss and admitting that we are having problems in the bedroom, or in living room or in the bathroom for that matter.

So how do we make things better?

I think it starts with being completely and totally honest with our better halves. The truth exists whether we choose to acknowledge it or not and no one wants an elephant in their room (No Fat Joe). I think I’m gonna start being honest tonight and tell wifey that I’ve been dying to make a sex tape with our new HD cam- ’cause I’m a freak like that!

-Al “Brooklyn” Bundy

Currently Listening: “She Needs My Love” – The-Dream (if you’re still sleepin’ on this album, please wake up)

Want more Bundy? Check out his previous post here.

Last 5 posts by Parlour

  • asha formerly known as thatchick

    wow, bundy, thanks for the warning, lol. as someone in the clinical field, i can honestly say that therapy works. it can work if the parties involved want it to work and want to do the work. when people finally come to a therapist, there is this misconception that therapist is going to fix it all. it doesn’t work that way. therapy is a process. but honestly, most people of color feel that therapy is a luxury. and who has time to sit around and tell some stranger their business? funny thing, we do it all the time anyway but usually to a biased audience.

    you posed a question, “is it really in their best interest to help you or do they just want you to keep coming back?” i can’t vouch for everyone out there but having a client for 10 years would seem like a career failure to me. it wouldn’t be challenging or rewarding but i digress. your questions usually come up when the person’s problem isn’t “solved” within 3 sessions or when sensitive topics arise. “i came here because i’m not having enough sex with my wife. why are you asking about my parents’ relationship?” most problems that people bring to therapy did not just pop up overnight so they are not going to disappear overnight either. some of the underlying reasons require digging deeper than people are ready for so the process slows down. therapy is a process, not a miracle cure-all.

    traditionally, intimacy is a difficult topic for men in general to discuss, much less in front of a stranger, especially if they wonder if it’s their fault. and therapy for women of color just became acceptable (blame/thank oprah). black women were struggling under their capes, trying to live up to that whole “superwoman” myth, but again, i digress. the intimacy issues may be caused by lack of communication but more than likely, it is due to ineffective communication. there’s a big difference. someone’s perceived ambivalence or passive-aggressiveness is communicating something but the message is not being received or is not being received as intended. a third party or mediator helps those involved use more effective ways to communicate, helps them break dysfunctional cycles of communication (my wife doesn’t act like she wants me so I cruise porn sites. she gets mad when she checks the history so she starts giving me the cold shoulder and then feeling ignored, i just increase my porn cruising.), etc. we all usually seek someone else’s opinion when we get stuck in our usual thought pattern/behavior pattern. that’s all therapy is at its most basic level.

  • Bundy

    Forgive me Asha… Its been a HECTIC week at work and I’ve been meaning to respond to your comment cuz i KNEW i’d get you all fired up. lol

    Intimacy is a difficult topic for men to discuss you’re right- especially men of color. Now I’m Latino and those stereotypes of machismo and being a manly man who doesnt wear his heart on his sleeve are still strong. But I like to think of myself as someone who can break those chains… still the thought of going through therapy is something that im not comfortable with.

    I believe my wifey and I can turn things around… if not we gonna have a intimate-less lifetime because I dont believe in Divorce either. 🙂

  • asha formerly known as thatchick

    i’m happy to hear that you’re hopeful about the situation. and being a latin man with all of that machismo, i doubt that you will remain in an intimacy-less marriage. you two will work it out. and as for your aversion to therapy, you’ve already started so keep up the posts…and my bill’s in the mail, lol.

  • Bundy

    yeah make that invoice payable to wifey- im gonna expense this to her.