Social Deconstruction

social deconstruction

Elevator Pitch

  • Hello, Autumn!
  • A conversation about race…again.
  • Terrence Crutcher and Kieth Lamont Scott.
  • Officer Shelby indictment.*
  • Parallels between toxic masculinity and racism.
  • Dating people with conflicting political views.
  • Voter registration.
  • And much more!
    • *Correction: Officer Shelby was indicted six days after the shooting death of Terence Crutcher, which occurred Friday (not Saturday), September 16.

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Episode 25 Preview

Individual Values On Opposite Ends

Religion vs. Science

Q: Dear Love Jays,

What’s your opinion on two people being in a long-term relationship where they have very different values?

A: Dear Differing Values,

Values are at our core. The way we think, act, or speak all boils down to our value system. Most values are developed from our religious beliefs or lack thereof, and we tend to hold very, very strongly to these convictions (sometimes to a fault). When engaging with someone whose values contradict our own, we often times distance ourselves or participate in never-ending arguments on why each other’s beliefs are “correct”. Don’t believe me? Take a look at Congress and formulate your own opinions.

While differing opinions make life interesting, formulating a long-term relationship with some whose values are “very different” may prove risky, especially when children get involved. I refuse to put someone down for believing in something differently than me, but why put myself in a situation where I’m continually left defending my point of view and subjecting myself to criticism?

Relationships are built on people. If values are at the core of every person, how can we build a strong relationship with someone whose foundation isn’t cut from the same material? It’s not impossible and there are exceptions to all rules, but compromising WHO we are shouldn’t be a relationship requirement.


Mr. J

A: Dear Different Strokes for Different Folks,

Jumping straight in…

Your values are at your core, who you are is based upon what you believe in. On every level, not just when it comes to religion. It’s okay for two people to have value systems that are similar, but slightly differ. You can work with that.

Now, in your case you are saying you have “very different values”, this leads me to believe there are very little similarities, if any at all. The saying “opposites attract” is valid, but only when speaking of hobbies and interest. Your values don’t have to be identical, but they should be pretty darn close. I would think it would be hard to be with someone, long-term or otherwise, who stands for everything you don’t.


Miss J

© LoveJays 2013

Industry X

Q: Dear Love Jays,

What is your stance on porn?

A: Dear X-Rated,

Porn as industry is causing much more harm than good – if any. Throughout my adolescent and teenage years, I was consuming porn several days a week. I first starting viewing it out of sheer curiosity, but then it became a habit. I attended an all-boys high school, so my only true outlet (up until I received my driver’s license) in satisfying my sexual appetite was through the internet. When I left for college, my consumption of porn dropped significantly, but I would still watch it a few times a month. Fast forward to today – I have given up porn completely and couldn’t be happier with my decision.

Aside from the COMPLETE degradation of women, porn take a subconscious grip of your mind and influences our actions. The way I viewed women, spoke to women, thought about women – it was primarily negative. Porn wasn’t the only factor in influencing these actions, but it definitely played a strong part. As I have become older, my views towards women have shifted dramatically and I can no longer seek to inspire and uplift young people while simultaneously subjecting myself to the enjoyment of porn.

I do not judge nor have ill-feelings towards anyone who consumes porn. I would challenge all of the men to hold themselves with higher regard and have more respect for women – and most importantly, yourself. And to the ladies who allow men to strip you of your self worth – realize the beauty and power you possess inside. No amounts of money or fame can ever fill the void of losing yourself.


Mr. J

A: Dear Interesting Question, 

This is such a short, but loaded question. I will give you a short and hopefully less loaded answer. 

I don’t have any strong feelings in regards to porn. I would not encourage it, but I would not frown upon someone who watches it in their own time. 

When it comes to porn and relationships it is important to find out how your significant other feels about you watching it alone, you watching it together and/or them watching it alone. If it starts to interfere with your intimate time with your partner then chances are there is a larger problem. Nothing is good in excess. 


Miss J 

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© LoveJays 2012

Construction Destruction

Q: Dear Love Jays,

I have been involved with a man for 5 yrs now. To say it has been rocky is the understatement of the year. For the last 3 years we have been renovating my house that we are also living in. His work has been spotty since he lost his job of 10 yrs (6 months into our relationship). He does the lion’s share of the work on the house, however I am always there as his assistant as I do not know how to do the construction, but help as much as I can. For this duration I have paid the mortgage, and all the bills and purchased the groceries, cooked the meals, etc. Recently he got a good job and now makes more than I do. I feel that he should be paying his part of the bills now that he is back on his feet. He is still doing work on the house but not near as much and there have been large gaps in the amount of work.Recently I had him start keeping track of the number of hours and have started detracting them from the bills, but I don’t really feel satisfied and I feel that this is going to be a source of contention going forward. Not to mention an avenue for him to pad his hours to make sure he does not have to pay anything.

Basically, am I being selfish for feeling that he should be contributing financially? I feel that if we are going forward as a couple that he should be contributing to our future in a bigger way. I feel restrained by his behavior instead of excited. If we were both contributing then it would go a lot faster and we could get past this stage of our lives. I feel very stuck.

A: Dear Stuck and Frustrated,

Relationship 101 – Communication and sacrifice. Can’t emphasize it enough. Any relationship that lacks in both departments will surely fail much quicker than it will succeed.

Before I even answer your question, let’s dissect a few of your statements.

“I have been involved with a man for 5 years. To say it has been rocky is the understatement of the year.”

Well, umm…Houston, we have a problem! You have clearly been frustrated for quite some time and the source of that feeling is much deeper than him not contributing financially and helping with construction on the house. Those two issues have most likely compounded previous issues that have been unaddressed, which has led you to this point of feeling stuck and frustrated. If I had to pick the most important lesson I have learned while dating Miss J for almost 5 years, it would be the principle of not waiting to reach the climax of your emotion before discussing it with your partner. Once we reach this point, all rational and logical communication comes second to the outward expression of anger or frustration. Nip the problem in the bud and you will minimize emotional distress.

“For the last 3 years we have been renovating my house that we are also living in.”

You have opened your home to your partner, pay the mortgage and all the bills, did basically everything while he was unemployed and all you asked of him was lead the construction efforts? And you two are still living together and dating because, why? Construction is no easy task, but seeing that he couldn’t contribute monetary value to the home, he had to pitch in somehow and I’m glad he accepted your offer. However, you noted that once he started working again, the construction around the house dwindled significantly and he STILL isn’t helping you financially!?! Am I missing the logic in all of this? In his defense, it would be unreasonable to expect the same amount of hours contributed to construction with a full-time job. A conversation should have happened yesterday addressing expectations from both parties.

Now, let’s get to your question. Are you being selfish in asking him to contribute financially? I don’t like the word selfish to describe this situation – let’s go with unfair.

If the two of you never discussed that he would be expected to contribute financially upon him landing a stable job, then yes it would be unfair of you to expect any monetary contributions. Notice I said unfair, not unreasonable. He is in the position where he can afford to contribute toward the bills, so despite what was said aloud, common knowledge suggest it’s only right that he should pay his share. On the flip side, if you did have this discussion and he isn’t holding up his end of the stick, you are entitled to feel upset and need to voice your dissatisfaction.

As I said earlier, I have a feeling there is more lying beneath the surface that needs to be discussed. Spend some time in reflection, collect and organize your thoughts, and decide what needs to happen next!


Mr. J

A: Dear Stuck,

If anything is clear to me, it is your frustration. No, you are not being selfish so-to-speak and yes, you both should be contributing to your lives together in a bigger way.

First, let’s address the house. You wrote:

“For the last 3 years we have been renovating my house that we are also living in.”

I noticed you did not say “our” house. You could have just been typing away and not paying attention to that minor detail, but in my mind that means subconsciously (maybe even consciously), it is “your” house and he is just living in it. If you expect your man to contribute in the things you share, they have to be just that – SHARED. If I can pick up on it, I am sure he can too. The more you include him in on the perks (feeling like he owns something), the more likely is to respond politely to a conversation about shared responsibility.

With that said, he is LIVING there. At the very least, he should be paying half of the bills and groceries; you can tackle the mortgage until he feels the house is as much his as it is yours. If you are not really into giving up the title of “my house” that’s okay, but then you have to be okay with paying the mortgage on your own. I understand he is helping you renovate the house, that is awesome, but it has nothing to do with the bills. Renovations are extra and bills are necessary. Bottom line. No need to have him log his hours, the time he spends on the house is not equal to your monthly expenses. If it continues to cause a problem in your relationship, I would suggest having someone else help you with the renovations and just have him cover his share of the bills.

You were kind enough to completely support him while he was at a low point, but now that he is stable again it is time for him to help you out. You are not wrong in wanting a partner instead of a dependent. Any real man would more than understand that. If anything, he should have offered to help by now, but since he hasn’t – bring it up. If he refuses, pull his card!


Miss J

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© LoveJays 2012