The holidays come with their own unique batch of challenges, struggles and dilemmas. From bringing a new partner around to meet the family to gift etiquette, there’s a lot to unpack. On this episode of Listen to Black Women, co-hosts Shamika Sanders, Jessie Woo and Chris Miss welcome Denequa Williams-Clarke, owner of fragrance company Lit Brooklyn, to discuss it all.
Dating During The Holidays
If you’re settled into a long-term relationship when the holidays hit, things aren’t too complicated. But when you’re in something new, the rules get a little murky.
Meeting The Family
The women first discuss bringing someone you’re newly dating to meet your family for the holidays. Should you do it? Answers are all over the spectrum. Miss says yes, because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Williams-Clarke sees the holidays as a good time to get everyone’s opinion on your new boo. But Woo says in Caribbean culture, bringing a partner home is a big deal – and signals that a ring is on the way. So that must be taken into consideration.
To Gift Or Not To Gift?
When you’re seeing someone new, it can be difficult to know how much to spend on them – if anything.
Woo’s rule is this: if she’s been seeing someone for “seven to 10 business days,” she expects a gift – and for the caliber of the gift to match the caliber of the man.
Miss says we need to focus less on how much we spend, and get back to giving thoughtful gifts.
Gift Giving Rituals
From how much to spend to who to buy for, gift-giving gets complicated. The ladies break down their views on gifting etiquette.
Sanders is a self-described elf, and gets very into the spirit of Christmas. She admits she’s guilty of over-spending (CNBC reports she’s in good company), but she is very intentional in her shopping, taking notes year-round on what loved ones need.
Miss feels gift-giving has become too materialistic. “I feel like people are doing it for the gram.” She wants to see the focus go back to giving something meaningful. Miss’ DIY gift hack: get generic hoodies and custom-press nicknames or phrases onto them.
Married-up Williams-Clarke says her favorite part of her relationship is that gift-giving isn’t reserved for holidays. She and her partner surprise one another with gifts year-round. But, she agrees with Miss – holiday gift-giving has become too much about show. “Make it what you want. Not everything has to be a flex,” she says.
Let’s Talk Resolutions
As the end of the year approaches, the pressure to take on that “New year, new me” mentality is real. But do the ladies subscribe to it? And how?
Williams-Clarke says she’s prioritizing health this year. “Especially after seeing people my age go through different tragedies,” she explains. Williams-Clarke already did two detoxes and plans on keeping the self-care going.
Woo admits she isn’t great at resolutions, but she’ll be making a vision board that she’ll refer to throughout the coming year. “I’ll resolute while I progress.”
What are your thoughts on dating during the holidays, gift-giving etiquette and all the other nitty-gritty the women got into on this episode? Comment below, and follow MADAMENOIRE to catch the next episode of Listen to Black Women.
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