In today’s society, maintaining a healthy and prosperous relationship over a long period of time deserves a Purple Heart Medal of Honor. From finances, to social media, to evolving personalities; Relationships require tough work each day. No two people think alike, and opposites typically attract. People war with various outside influences everyday. Many of these influences contribute to the overall atmosphere of relationships, including: The guy who cut you off in traffic, the evil supervisor who’s trying to get you fired, the girl who keeps flirting even though you’ve firmly told her you’re happily married, the over-protective mother who thinks no man is good enough for her daughter, the jealous friend who really wants your man, etc.

But what happens when the biggest issue in your relationship comes from within? What happens when a man loves you so much that he’s ready and willing to deal with every outside pressure in the world for the sake of you two? What happens when your mans biggest problem is not the finances, the job, the THOTS, the crazy mother, or the jealous friend? What happens when your man’s biggest problem is you?

This situation happens more often than not, and I’m going to list out 5 simple things that make YOU, your partner’s biggest problem:

1.You don’t pick your battles wisely  –  Know the total personality of your partner and set your expectations accordingly. If you’re dealing with a forgetful man i.e. They lose their keys and cell phone 7 times a week. Don’t get upset if he forgets to call you back, he may be a scatter-brained guy. As an adult, you cannot fix what his mama and Ritalin couldn’t. Don’t waste your time arguing with him about being a responsible man and keeping his word. If he can’t be the man you need, it’ll show up early. Decide early-on what you’re willing to deal with.

2.You cut his legs every opportunity you get –  You’ve been at work all day thinking about using your new meatloaf recipe as soon as you get home. As you walk in the door, you see your man in the kitchen cooking dinner for the two of you (Mind you… his ass can’t boil water). As you think about the meatloaf you’ve wanted all day, in addition to the fact that you know his meal is gonna taste bad, you tell him to go in the front room and watch the football game, you’ll handle dinner.

This seems unrealistic to a conscious woman, but similar situations happen all the time. People will not always do things the way you would. It’s extremely important that you remove yourself and acknowledge when someone is doing something from the kindness of their hearts. Learn to accept his various expressions of love, and appreciate them from a selfless place. Better yet, use each expression to build on how he can love you better.

3.You’re insecure – Do you have to look at his phone every time he grabs it? Does complimenting Halle Berry while y’all watch “Losing Isaiah,” during movie night constitute him being disrespectful? Do you not know how to absorb your man’s compliments? Confidence is sexy. How you feel about yourself translates to how your man feels about you.

4.Your punishment doesn’t fit the crime – Men f*ck sh!t up… Alot.  So it’s important to show your man what you will and will not tolerate. But if you withhold sex for a month because he left the toilet-seat up, you’re not only petty- you’re dumb. Be smart in communicating your expectations. Also, never back your man into a corner, you’ll lose every time. P.S. I’m sure your jealous best friend wouldn’t mind giving him a soft place to land while you’re being petty.

5.You don’t feel worthy enough to have him – This and reason #3 are closely related. Unfortunately, we live in a society which views: black women who are miserable with their man > black women who are happily single. As a result, many women buy into the myth that they have to be everything to their man at all times. Trust me when I say this, “Exclusivity and mystery are sexy to a man.” When a woman knows her worth, she doesn’t easily put everything on the table. And to be honest… guys love the chase. Men like to conquer. If you lay down and give all of you, all the time, he’ll wander off to conquer more territory. Exude confidence in knowing that your man is all about you, and be smart in how you incite his appetite for you.