Tag Archive | "Relationships"

Why Men Hate Women

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past year or so, you’ll remember how serial bad boy radio jock Gareth Cliff got the whole country riled up with his observation that “22 year old girls do nothing but lie on their backs with their legs open!”

Pic from Women24

Gareth Cliff

The comment followed from an interview with 22 year old AIDS activist Angela Larken, who started working with charities from the age of 19. When taken in context, the comment isn’t too terrible – if you’re completely soul-less – and, considering it’s Gareth Cliff we’re talking about, the comment is almost PC.

It’s no secret that Cliff is a misogynist – he clearly hates women – but compared to some of the comments I’ve read online and heard casually uttered by acquaintances, Cliff positively adores women.

I remember the first time I read ‘The Kanga and the Kangaroo Court’ by Mmatshilo Motsei about the Jacob Zuma rape trail and how people just demonised the alleged victim. She went from being a rape victim to being this gold-digging, psycho witch who had ask for it and deserved what she got.

This response shocked me because for the first time, I realised that this was what real sexism is. Sexism sometimes wears a clown mask, but no matter how funny the joke about the midget and the receptionist, the truth is that the male of the species has a real hate-love-hate relationship with women.

I once dated this guy, we’ll call him X (see what I did there?) and we were at that stage in our relationship where everything is cute to no one but the people in the relationship.

X would put his friends on speaker when he was with me and I thought it was the most adorable thing ever (don’t judge me, I was young), until the day he told one of his friends about me and the friend replied, “Okay, she’s smart. But is she pretty?”

Pretty women sell things, be it fried chicken, skin lightening cream or cars, and there’s nothing wrong with that. The problem starts when women are seen as nothing beyond background decoration for men, even powerful women whose looks have absolutely nothing to do with their job description.

An online comment thread about some of our female politicians had this to say Read the full story

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A Case of Digital Love: I dare you to be yourself on Facebook

One of the greatest mediums on which to promote your business or your personal brand is through Facebook. The social media scene has had a huge impact on the growth of companies, the expansion of communication channels, the forming of new friendships, and the launch of brands and empires.  It is a great medium to spread messages, find lost friends, and promote events, while at the same time updating the world on issues relevant to you.

I find Facebook, Twitter and other social networks very useful and an invaluable gift to mankind. But, I must admit, they have their negatives – hectic negatives! You see, I fell in love on Facebook. I had a virtual boyfriend who would send me messages and I would get butterflies just by reading… “Hi.”

I lived on his wall and would drool over his pictures as often as I would eat food every day! His comments on my posts were to me as vital as your vote is to the ANC! He’d ‘Like’ any rubbish I would post and would sometimes comment, telling me just how awesome, gorgeous, funny and wise I was. I’d blush like a white girl and could sense him smile from wherever he was. He was a total stranger to me but I got to know him as if he was an old friend.  I really did think he was “The One.” So, we decided to finally meet face to face…

And man was that awkward! We had nothing to say to each other. We couldn’t even look at each other, let alone share a cup of coffee. He wasn’t the witty, bold, confident, slick and drop-dead-gorgeous smooth-talker hunk he looked like on his profile.

It was awkward and uncomfortable, and left us both feeling exposed and unsure of who we were as social beings. I not only felt lied to and betrayed, I also felt gullible, desperate and an outright fool to “love.”

My constant need to publish, post or tag has left me unable to communicate with someone directly. I no longer have the socially acceptable skills of forming relationships outside of Facebook, BBM or Twitter. I have forgotten how to keep relationships and friendships outside of the safety of social networking. Speaking to my family without reference to a funny status update or a hideous picture has become next to impossible for me.  I gave up what was as natural as a hug as a means of affection, in exchange for a digital ‘Poke’ to an old friend. My addiction to Facebook caused me to lose myself and led me into the arms of a digital crush that would keep me up at odd hours surfing through his images and “liking” everything he said.

I fell in ‘digital love’. I wouldn’t wish it on any celebrity, oldie or teen. It is not real. It is based on what we wish we were and not what we really are. Note how rich, successful and just so darn beautiful all your Facebook friends are! Lies from the pit of hell I tell you! The photoshoped pics, borrowed cars and not so cute babies are just our way of feeling like bigger people. I dare you to be real. I dare you to not get addicted to social networks and form a false identity through them. I dare you to meet people face to face without first looking through their pictures. I dare you to get to know me before you see my profile. I dare you to know who I am as a person and love me for the person I am, and not based on the stolen quotes I post.

I dare you to be yourself on Facebook!

-Poppy ‘Pops’ Vilakazi

Follow Pops on Twitter: @popsvila


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Who Are Your Friends?

As social creatures, we generally do better in groups than on our own. Survival is ultimately a team sport, be it in business, communities, unions and friendships – so consider this as a key contributor to success in any area. This may be a hard pill to swallow, but the people you surround yourself with are a reflection of you and where you’re going.

We tend to hold on too tightly to relationships that we know aren’t serving us any good because we hope that somehow things will get better. The truth is you’ll never outgrow your peer group, because if you are continually growing and making progress, the people around you will have to be at least your level or a level above you in order for you to sustain your progress.

Researchers found in a landmark study that friends had a direct influence on one’s likelihood of gaining weight. When a friend becomes overweight, it increases your likelihood of becoming overweight by 60%. But this goes beyond fitness; it affects your finances, business and career. How much value do the people you hang around with bring into your life? Are they continually pushing you to dream bigger or be better?

If not, you may want to reconsider spending too much of your time with them. This doesn’t mean you’ll never talk to them or that you’ve stopped caring about them. It does however, mean that you value yourself and your life enough to invest your time and energy with people who Read the full story

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The Cheating Game: Why Men Lie and Women Lie Better

A couple of weeks ago, a friend of mine asked why, when women cheat, they feel the need to confess everything to their boyfriends.

This, for obvious reasons, got me thinking. Not about cheating itself, but about the various ways cheating manifests in relationships. One thing women seem to accept as inevitable is the fact that their men will cheat on them at some point.

We have even gone so far as to categorise the different ways our boyfriends, partners and husbands cheat. For example, Pam could draw the line at him not coming home all weekend, while Nthabi doesn’t mind as long as he doesn’t impregnate his side-chick.

Women, where is your pride? Don’t you believe you deserve better than this? Why do we accept such treatment?

As a black woman living in a village, a kasi or a suburb, we have all heard our elders say things like: “Monna ke selepe wa adimisanwa,” and “Basadi ba feta banna ka palo.”

Loosely, this translates to: “a man is an axe, anyone can use him” and “women outnumber men.” Our mothers, aunts, grandmothers repeat these words and, through repetition, make them self-fulfilling prophecies.

This licentiousness not only normalises the behaviour, it makes cheating positively mandatory. It’s become as much a part of our culture that if a man who doesn’t cheat is somehow less of a man.

The truth is Read the full story

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un-Abused DIVA!

The streets of Gugulethu weren’t the most life-filled streets in South Africa, especially when you start listening to the stories echoed by the gutters of Soweto. Gugulethu was safe. My parents would be up at 5am trying to catch the earliest bus so that they could make it to work by 7.30am. We would play ball games right after school until it was dark. On Fridays we’d play until ten so my mother bought a floodlight and placed it in front of the house so we could play longer.

There were those overly competitive girls and there were those that were less interested in the game and more in the boys that rocked up. They would steal a kiss and cuddle for a few minutes with their boys and wait for the floodlight to go off as a sign that they should head on home. I was one of those girls. All I can tell you is that he was the best basketball player that anyone had ever come across and he was all mine. Okay I lie, there were a few of us. I was young and naïve – shoot me! He was my first love but he wasn’t my soulmate or the love of my life. I just really loved him for 4 years. We’re great friends now.

My friends also had their own boyfriends at the time. They were in black schools and I went to an English school for most of my life, but you couldn’t tell the difference between us because their English was just as good. But behavior-wise…we were on separate poles. They were very traditional and saw things in black and white; there were rules set by people who survived in the primitive era and these were passed onto them by their parents and they would simply abide. While on the other side, I was more up for debating and shredding every single one of those rules. There were many examples of how they thought I was behaving “out of order” – like the wearing a stunning white dress and looking like Cinderella while they wore Levis jeans and white Aca Joe shirts with All Stars – you see that was not on. I couldn’t look like a princess when they were looking like they were confused lesbians. This also made things difficult because their boyfriends used to hit on me – I think it was because I was different.

Apart from our differences, it was always great hanging with the girls. I knew that no matter what happened they’d be there for me. The only concern I had was when they’d tell me about their relationships. They were already intimate with their guys and I was still a virgin. So I found their stories quite entertaining. Even though I thought that there was a standard rule that we were all supposed to wait until we were 21 to break our virginity. So whilst they told me about their not-so-exciting sex lives, in the same breath and sentence, they would switch to how these guys hit them.

I’m like: Hold on! Wait a minute! This isn’t one of those slap my butt and call me sugar mama moments. They explained to me that it was definitely a Bam! Slap in the face, “Sfebe uthi k’theni” moments. My jaw dropped every time I heard this. I was told not to worry because this was normal. NORMAL? The world must be going crazy!


The beatings happened more and more. It would start with “iTake-5” (slap-bam across the face), to a double-take (using both hands on each cheek at the same time), then followed by a fly kick in abdominal area and ending it off with an arm twist from the back. I swear it was as if these boys were watching too much of Jackie Chan or Van Damme movies! This occasionally happened in the middle of the street just when night was about to creep in. How convenient, in the dark – talk about romance. They say “azingenwa” Read the full story

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Hello, Mr. Right, are you out there?

“It’s not like we’re ugly, don’t have bad breath nor smelly feet, but for some odd reason we still find ourselves single,” a dear friend keeps emphasising. Like hello, Mr. Right, are you out there? Where can I find you? Maybe not find you per se but will we ever meet, like the way it is told in fairytales – remembering that life is not one.

Many friends and I included, have jumped from one bad relationship to the next. It has been a recurring cycle for the past couple of years. Yah I’m sure someone’s reading this and thinking dirt will attract dirt. Okay, to clear the air before it gets bad. An individual doesn’t necessarily attract what they are subconsciously. It’s like an apple or chocolate. You see something colourful, delicious and exciting on the outside but once you’ve taken a bite of it you realise that this thing is not the greatest. I’m sure there’s a girl shaking her head and agreeing to these words.

So now that one has sorted out their criteria and long list of do’s and don’ts, there comes that breaking point everyone gets to. You reach a stage where you refuse to date a guy or chick below your long list of do’s and don’ts. The so-called potentials come and go; you go on a few dates but a couple of months down the down the line there’s still no man/woman to call ‘yours’. Now you start dropping your criteria less and less like now you’ll take the guy who has no sense of style or the guy who has a gold tooth (no offence) or the guy who tweezes his eyebrows like a lady as he fills them in with an eye brow pencil, or better yet, the guy who Read the full story

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Enemies with Benefits

They say keep your friends close and your enemies closer. All is fair in Love and War, a place where anything goes and nothing is out of bounds. Your relationship is a War Zone; full espionage and spy games, email account break-ins and phone taps. Sometimes it’s psychological warfare, the systemic dismantling of your partner’s self-esteem and self-confidence. Other times, it’s hand to hand combat, night time arguments that transition into a push and a shove and ending with a broken lip and flashing police lights.

The objective is to Win. But, if victory is not an option then the mission is to ensure that nobody wins. And so some people are willing to Kamikaze their own Relationships – “If I’m unhappy, you’re going to be unhappy with me” and “if I can’t move on, you’re not going anywhere either.”

They both try to hide it from the world. He plays the role of the diplomat and Mr. Perfect while she tries to cover up the dried up mascara that outlines the tracks of her tears. They are Enemies with Benefits, a couple caught in cycle of misery and never-ending drama but still drawn to together by a few misleading and insignificant moments of Happiness, Peace and Hope.

Sincerely yours,

Twitter | @kwapiv


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