Are We Ruining Our Women?

By Ilex Bien-Aime

I hear men complaining about damaged women all of the time. If you were to listen to most men, you would believe that we are always the correct and sane sex, while women  are crazy and always wrong. Too bad life is never really that black and white. Long before the book “Men Are from Mars, Women are from Venus” was written, men and women knew that we could not have come from the same planet. In all honesty men and women really don’t see eye to eye on most subjects. At the same time though, we see and know more than we  let on that we see and know.

I’ve written before that “Men are Vultures” because like the bird, we like to attack what we consider to be weaker prey. Men love opportunity and we will pounce on you when you are at your weakest point. Unless a man has been hiding under a rock all of his life, he generally knows the biggest weaknesses of women. Like a trained boxer, if he sees a cut under your eye, he will keep punching at it so that he can exploit it. This is why I can’t defend men completely when women attack us for our misdeeds.

Back in the day men used to lie to women in order to get what they wanted. Over time we realized that there was no need to lie. We can now tell you the truth and still get the same results but without the negative names and labels that women used to apply to our deceit. At some point most women have heard “I am not looking for a serious relationship”. If you haven’t heard it, trust me you will. That is the famous clause that both men and women use however the “male lawyer mind” has perfected it.

Telling a woman that we are not looking for a serious relationship is our way of saying, just in case something goes wrong with this little “agreement” we have, you don’t have grounds to disrespect me or be upset because I told you so from the beginning. If you look back at my article, “Your Weaknesses Used Against You,” you will see I have written that men know exactly what we are doing when we tell you we are not looking for anything serious. We know that women tend to say that they are cool with this arrangement at first but the law of averages will tell you, that most women cannot handle It. The man thinks that because we can say “I told you so,” we are somehow exonerated.

Men, like women, love to be in relationships. The difference between the sexes is that at some point women tend to want one man and men tend to want many women with that main woman leading the pack. Men want the benefits of being in a relationship but do not want the responsibility of the relationship. So he is willing to take you out, come over  your house to watch “Love Jones,” and in many cases spend quality time with you doing whatever. He will unofficially be your man but trust me, he officially still believes that he is not your man.

Deep down fellas, we are ruining our women because we use what we know are their weaknesses against them, for our own selfish gain. If you know that women think a certain way and you still choose to do certain things, you should hold yourself accountable for your dishonesty. You are purposely riding this gravy train and in many cases are purposely being misleading. You really don’t care that she will be hurt in this, all you care about is getting what you can get for as long as you can get it.

I understand that this is frustrating for both sides. On one hand we are telling women the truth. One the other hand women claim to understand and maybe even believe that they can survive the “just friends” category, yet both sides are GUILTY! Men are guilty because we know the results of this game before we start to play and women are guilty for deciding to play and then screaming foul once the game gets heated.
For my future daughters, I hope that men will change and learn to be more responsible. At the same time, if men never change I write this so that my future daughters and other women will decide not to get caught up in this foolish game.

My name is Ilex Bien-Aime and I live in Washington, DC with my lovely wife. I write as a man who has seen women mistreat themselves and who have allowed themselves to be mistreated. I write as a man who wants to give my future daughters a guideline on how to deal with men. Lastly I write what I write because my female friends are always asking my opinion about these situations.  Connect with Ilex at or via email at

14 replies
  1. Savannah
    Savannah says:

    This is wonderful to acknowledge the toxic mindsets of some men. it's sad because some of them are taught this by other men that are in unsucccessful relationships themselves. Smh great article

  2. B.Renee
    B.Renee says:

    I just finished having a conversation with my dad about this topic. He told me that when he was dating he'd tell women up front that he wasn't looking for a relationship or anything 'serious' but he mentioned it as if he was doing them a favor. I didn't get a chance to ask him what the "disclaimer" profited him. Did it mean well now I have consistent sex partner ? play wife? companion? This article did clarify some things that I can bring up in our future conversations. However, I think it's okay for men to be honest about their intentions [regardless of the intentions behind their intentions lol] because it let's women know where they stand with them. I also think that women tend to forget the power of choosing. If a man initially tells you he doesn't want anything serious and in your heart that's what you desire, it seems unwise to continue with anything further. Is this "off the wall thinking?"

    As a young woman who desires marriage, I would find it difficult to enter into a relationship that has no commitment in its future. I also find it hard to believe that a man would stay in an uncommitted relationship that didn't involve sex. I may be making a broad generalization but I'm interested to know.

    Very good article!

  3. Shawn L. Gardner
    Shawn L. Gardner says:

    I think this is a spot on article so great piece, but I would like to add it's not always as cut and dry. In the work I do I often differentiate between males and men. The basic difference is that males don’t take on responsibility and men do. At some point all men have been males and in some aspect of our lives we still are. Which leads to my point.

    I contend that yes, men ARE ruining women, but I also believe it may not be intentional. If we are talking about the black community, and my target population, low income (which makes up the majority of the black community as suggested by Eugene Robinson’s “Disintegration: The Splintering of Black America”), then the reality is our community is over-run with black males. This is important because if I’m a male, not responsible for myself (incarcerated, homicides, drug dealing, drug abuse, to name a few), then how can I be responsible for anything else?

    I developed a program called TFU! which stands for “Teen Fatherhood University.” During TFU! I let the males (24 and under), know they are responsible for the interaction with the mother of their child. They give me quizzical looks and a ton of excuses as to how it’s not true and that it’s the mother’s fault, but as we work through it they realize the power they have in the relationship with the mother of their child. This is one example of how I believe this piece is true, but it’s not intentional, the males just don’t know…

    Another aspect are the men who are like me, and wrestle with the male tendency, who state what you call the famous line, “I don’t want to be in a relationship,” however, when I say it I’m sincere because I recognize there is much that needs to be done on my end before I can establish a meaningful relationship with any woman (I admit doesn’t make it right). The problem is that occasionally I give in to the flesh and of course what ensue are the problems that attach with loose intimacy.

    Truth be told there is a lot of work that needs to be done in the black community and I believe it starts with pieces like this, discussions that we bring to the table, that especially, include black males/ men. I have a mentor that says, don’t tap what you can’t manage, and while on the surface this sounds edgy and brash a deeper understanding of the context, will help us “men,” stop ruining our women.

  4. Darren Miller
    Darren Miller says:

    Hmmm. This article, I am ashamed to say, sounds like me. When I first met my partner pretty much the first thing I said to her was that this relationship was not going to be serious and that she should not fall in love with me because she will get hurt. Why she stayed with me after that I have no idea. She agreed that it wasn't going to be serious, but I know that deep down she was looking for someone she could settle down with. I just wanted to keep my options open, and you're right this was a clause that I relied on.

    However, I am pleased to say that somehow she managed to change my attitude and we are still going strong 3 years later.

  5. Kelly Brown
    Kelly Brown says:

    What I find is women only cry foul because the man makes them feel like they are his one and only. They don't just hit and quit it they come around and use the woman for as long as they ar allowed too. Is it really all fair in love and war? It's a game where everyone looses and our very black family foundation is cracked because we lack the discpline and allow lust to lead the family unit.

  6. kataurus Braswell
    kataurus Braswell says:

    This is so true, but I think that our women need to stop fallin for these obvious games! I dont think that us men will every change this about our selves, so women need to learn to see this stuff coming.

  7. steve
    steve says:

    I've said it before and I'll say it again "The only thing better than pussy is new pussy" That's how SOME men think and they teach our youth the same.

  8. Jakki
    Jakki says:

    Ilex, I truly thank you for your honesty because Black men and women will have better relationships when we except accountability for our action, and stop lying to ourselves. Peace~N~Blessings

  9. hulJan
    hulJan says:

    agreed Ilex

  10. Ilex
    Ilex says:

    When I write about men, I am not saying all men. When I write about women, I am not saying all women. The issues that I discuss are not just about black people, all races have these issues. To say that men are vultures is to say that many of us have that mentality at some point in our lives. To say that women fall prey is to say that many women have fallen victim to these things. I understand that this may sound to you as an indictment on all black men but I am a black man myself. I know as well as anybody that we are not all one way or the other. What I would like is for the men reading this to clean up their acts and for the women reading to do the same. If it does not apply to a man or a woman than I bet you with most certainty that they know someone and or many someones that have been guilty of these things.

  11. Terri
    Terri says:

    Ok. I understand the points you are making in this article Ilex but it seems like you are doing a whole lot of generalizing and labeling here. You make it sound like most men aren't really about anything. Are you speaking about men in general or do you mean some men? I think its really important that you be conscious of the message you're sending when you say stuff like " Men love opportunity and we will pounce on you when you are at your weakest point." I'm not saying that it isn't true at all. I'm just saying that the same way all black women aren't angry; all black men aren't dogs and these are images that we need to be fighting against and dispelling not promoting even if you are trying to come from a good place. Oh, and I am a woman.

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