I was just a girl. A man didn’t mean as much. Now I’m a woman, a passionate woman. Now I’m a woman. A true leading woman. Brandy – “Come As You Are
        I’ve cheated on every boyfriend I have ever had. **annnnnd the judgements pour in** It’s a hard fact for me to deal with. The person I was would have lied about this. I’d give the usual “Not all of them” explanation accompanied by a briefing of what they were/weren’t doing that left me  guilt-free of my way. I just recently came to the terms of my actions. I think that I had even convinced myself that I wasn’t a cheater. But I was. Yup. I sure was. The day I came to the realization, I txted Crystal a simple “Damn yo, I’m a cheater.” She might not remember, but I remember vividly. I remember because I felt no remorse even though I knew I should have. 
      Part of the reason I was a cheater wasn’t my fault. The men I was dealing with couldn’t give me everything. And no matter how young I was (my young was never synonymous with dumb) I knew what I needed and what I expected. My first boyfriend, I never loved. But I was too young to understand everything that was happening and as a young girl, you equate sex and love… until you don’t and it’s downhill from there. The next one was broke & I had to take care of him. I lost interest. The next took care of me, but tried to control me so I needed to prove that I still belonged to myself. The last one is the most difficult for me to work out. I wanted to be his. & he wouldn’t claim me. So I gave myself away. 
    The other reason is that I wasn’t ready. No matter how much I tried to convince myself, I wasn’t ready for it. I agree that there are differences between man and woman but it was Eve who coaxed Adam to go against the word of God. Women are just as capable of sin as men are. We’re given this sense of purity that many of us don’t even deserve. I’m not saying I traveled from bed to bed but each of my boyfriends was the one I was cheating on the last with. They overlapped. Part of this was because I didn’t want to be alone. Like I said in “Generation Disney” a girl just wants to be wanted. It would have also sucked to be the only one out of your friends who doesn’t have a boyfriend. I know that sounds dumb, but at 15, that might be the most important matter of your life. If you don’t have a boyfriend, it’s probably because no one wants to be your boyfriend. I mean, that’s the assumption at least. 
    The reason girls lie about cheating is because numbers matter so much when it comes to us. We can’t have slept with too many guys. So if I say I cheated, that means 2 guys you can count as opposed to 1. We can’t be honest about anything. About our sexual experiences. Relationships, anything, because we’re judged at every turn. And when you open up about one thing, people confuse it all. For example, I can guarantee you can’t count mine because all my relationships overlapped and circled over each other. But when a girl gets too much attention, people think she’s sleeping with everyone. 
   My friends and I used to try to get enough guys to rotate through the week. Like… wait… whats that movie where dude names girls by day of the week? (I’m seriously asking you. Please comment) lol. We thought we was Big Pimpin forreal. It was the era of Lil Kim (as usual) and Remy Ma. Beautiful thing is… you dont have  to sleep with everybody. This was the “we’re talking” phase of teenage-pimpin. The only thing you have to watch out for is girls around you that get a little jealous of the ordeal. & no one says anything until they say it out loud.

 **TIP: Never give details of your dealings. Because then no one can say anything about anything. & those who try to will find themselves in the only category left: envious. For example, I once got a “crank call” from these girls (with terribly distinguishable, not sexy voices) I went to school with. They tried to pretend they were from Planned Parenthood, saying something about my “results” and Clamydia. To which I responded, “I think you called the wrong number. HER NAME HERE and I got tested together, so I know she has it. She got it from HIS NAME HERE. You should call her.” And then I hung up. I was a very dont-fuck-with-me kind of girl back then. Oh & I can proudly say I’ve never gotten anything. Ever 🙂 Clean as a[n unused still in the packaging] whistle.**

    Honestly, I think a lot of people lie when they claim to have never cheated. I’m not saying that monogamy is impossible, I just believe it’s tough. It takes much more than a “what are we” conversation to make a person want to be with you and just you. Some girls try to force this by doing things like… having babies. But I already addressed that in “Baby(s) Don’t Go“. The thing with me was… I was young. When I was 15, I knew I was 15. When I was 18, I knew I was 18. I felt young and was. I felt like there was too much time left to live and too many people out there to meet. And at those ages there were. There was no concern about if he has a degree. There was no thought about raising children or maintaining a household. Men more easily fit into my standards: Tall and cute. For example, I partied at home a couple months ago and saw I guy I had been briefly involved with. He was flashing a stack and buying everybody drinks and in effort to impress. Thing is, I know where he works: The carwash across the street from the Goodwill. Which means this man was spending his whole paycheck. And if there is extra money, I know where that’s coming from… and honestly, I’m not interested in having to kick into a niggas commissary. 
    I didn’t need real love. I was just a girl. I was content having friends. I didn’t need a man. I grew up in a house with a mother who survived on her own, showing me that a man wasn’t necessary for happiness. Men did not equal happiness.  They were people to kiss and lay with and feel physical sensations you can’t feel anywhere else. They were easy to dispose of. To cut ties and move on. That’s why I cheated. I never connected with them on that level. 
     I had never had my heart broken. The things I did to men’s hearts had never been done to me. I didn’t know exactly what I was doing to them or how much they hurt, but knew that if anyone did that to me, I wouldn’t be able to handle it. So I broke them to pieces. Until I saw my heart liquify and pour from my eyes day after day after day after day after day. And when I looked in the mirror, drained… I no longer recognized myself… 
That was the day I met me for the first time.  
    I sat in front of the mirror and watched myself cry. For hours. I had lost everything. My friends. My man. My innocence. My self. I sat and watched as the girl I was dripped out of me and somewhere between my tears and my thoughts I got to know myself. I made decisions and promises that day. The one promise I made for myself I refuse to break is that I will never hurt again. Even more, I will never hurt anyone again. Not like I used to. Not on purpose. Not without remorse. I won’t ever put my heart on the table like I did with him. Because “When He Left Me,” I experienced more pain than I’ve ever felt. I don’t ever want to feel that again. & The man who shows me he deserves me, the one I make the commitment to won’t ever have to feel that either. That, I promise. 
     I’ve promised to be true to everyone I get involved with from this point forward. So hopefully the next doesn’t hold it against me. I mean, I was just a girl. Hopefully he’ll see me for the woman I met that day in the mirror.