Last week I heard plenty of conversation about VH1’s Love & Hip Hop, and the proposal between Chrissy Lampkin and her fiance, rapper Jim Jones. The discussion wasn’t so much about the engagement itself, rather it was about the proposal. Chrissy proposed to Jim Jones. I don’t usually watch Love & Hip Hop, but I did watch the “proposal episode” to understand the dynamics of Chrissy and Jim Jones’ relationship. With all the discussion surrounding the proposal, the obvious questions arose, “Should a woman propose to a man?” Here is my take on Chrissy’s proposal, and women proposing to men in general.
After watching the “proposal episode” in its entirety, I was baffled as to why Chrissy thought her relationship was in a good place for an engagement at all. In the events leading up to the proposal, she makes the statements “Jimmy acts immature, maybe he’s not ready, he’s not responsible.” Chrissy verbalized all of the reasons why she shouldn’t get engaged or married, yet she proposes to “Jimmy” anyway. I’m not saying Jim Jones isn’t a good guy or a good boyfriend (I’ve only watched a twenty-minute clip of their relationship), but I think it speaks volumes that Chrissy and Jim have been together eight years and HE still hasn’t proposed. Chrissy stated that in the past she’s had to take control in their relationship, and this was another time she felt the need to take control. WRONG!!! She’s basically saying if he won’t do it, it will never happen. Proposal has nothing to do with control, but everything to do with timing and commitment. Jim Jones was not ready to be engaged to Chrissy, nor married, which is why he hadn’t proposed after eight years! I can bet any amount of money that an engagement to Chrissy was probably the last thing on his mind. That’s not to say Jim Jones doesn’t love Chrissy and care for her, but after eight years of co-habitation and a comfortable lifestyle, marriage is probably not a factor. I thought Chrissy made one, only one, wise decision regarding the proposal, and that was her decision not to perform a burlesque dance before the proposal. Really?? The “proposal episode” annoyed me beyond belief! I was annoyed that a grown woman still couldn’t see the dynamics of her own relationship after eight years. Jim Jones appears to be the type of man to put everything out in the open. I’m sure over the years he’s made it very clear who he is and what his priorities are. It’s obvious that marriage was not one of them.
Chrissy is not the first woman, nor will she be the last to propose to her boyfriend. Should women propose to their man? I say absolutely not! I’m not an expert on gender roles, and I can’t say I have a strong opinion on the recent societal discussions about gender roles, but I do believe a man should propose to a woman. Let a man be a man! Women have accomplished a lot in their fight for independence, respect, and the same rights as men, but that does not mean women have to dominate the roles of men. Some women might argue “why do women have to wait for men to get married?” Women don’t have to wait for anything!! If a man has made it clear he’s not ready for marriage, and a woman is ready, then that woman has a decision to make. She can either stay in the relationship to see where it goes, or she can leave. Yes a woman can leave a relationship! The problem is that some women are scared to leave, which is why they end up in uncommitted eight year relationships like Chrissy. Some couples make a conscious decision to avoid marriage, but when you have one half that wants to get married, after a certain period of time together (eight years for example), it’s called settling. I know someone who’s been in a relationship for over ten years, and she’s made the statement “if he doesn’t put a ring on it by the end of this year, I’m leaving.” No she’s not! She’s been settling for so long. If her man doesn’t do a damn thing different from what he’s done for the past 10+ years, she’s going to do the same thing she’s always done – deal with it! I don’t believe women should give ultimatums for marriage, nor do I believe women should lie to themselves. Ladies a man can be with a woman for years, but she still may not be “the one.” Instead of proposing to men, women should ask themselves “Why hasn’t he proposed and is he worth waiting for?”