An Open Letter to All Ride Or Dies

To All The Ride or Dies Out There,

o3bonnieFirst thing that comes to mind when I hear ride or die, aside from the obvious, is: “Be my down ass. With your round ass.”

I’m sure it’s what you think of, too. Don’t front. But back to Jay & Bey… I think they too would be slightly floored as to what being a “ride or die” has slowly but surely become. I’m not sure if you guys have noticed but the definition of “ride or die” has long since been romanticized. As if being a ride or die has come to mean the neglect of a basic foundation of relationships, starting with mutual respect …Literally leaving [both romantic and friendly] relationships bruised, battered, and withered and all persons involved have fallen victim to these fabricated illusions…

Firstly, for whatever reason, now more than ever, there’s been this obsession of “who is loyal and who is not.” Literally, everywhere you turn, you hear dialogue about friends not being loyal… Men not being loyal… Hoes not being loyal (don’t get me wrong, that is the jam). But… What good is a relationship if all that is present is an abundance of blind trust? To question, challenge, or even REMIND one another to do better by BEING better literally can’t find a home in this kind of “ride or die” mindset. There’s no country for it. But here’s a little secret: That’s not being loyal. That’s being wack. That’s being wack as fuck.

 

That kind of ride or die warrants no kind of nobility. As a matter of fact, being that kind of ride or die would leave you with nothing but an aching heart and a mind full of questions about the people you care about most. Personally, having been there once before, I knew that I didn’t want to blindly agree with anyone off the sole strength that were in either a) in a relationship together, b) best friends, or c) family.

 

Actually, I became reacquainted with this in my present relationship. At first, when my boyfriend wouldn’t always agree with me, I thought something was terribly off. I was so hormonal that sometimes, I even thought he was out to get me. Lmao! But, he’d simply go onto patiently explain that I could never possibly be capable of respecting anyone who tells me “Yes” without even thinking twice. You see, being self-aware is that daily dose of reality we need. Being self-aware is that loving reminder that we are not right all the time (which is a hard pill to swallow, especially for a Virgo woman). With that being said, how in the hell can we put our trust and faith into anyone who behaves as if they believe the aforementioned to be completely inaccurate? Well… Quite frankly, you can’t.

 

Genuine loyalty does not anticipate silence in order to entertain and encourage nonsense. Nor does it demand friends to agree with every action. It does not believe in, “If you can’t beat em, join ‘em,” and it certainly does not expect one to surrender their integrity, or themselves, to encourage another’s intentionally immature behavior. In no way am I saying you shouldn’t be there for your beloveds, because Lord knows I champion helping others… But you must do what you can. Starting with yourself.

 

You are your foundation.

 

Genuine loyalty does, on the other hand, require that you examine the situation for what it is before you find yourself free-falling into an abyss of melodrama and depression. But that… That you’ll learn as you go. You’d be amazed by how much you can learn about loyalty from losing… From regretting… From dissolving. Probably just as much as you can learn from developing and exploring. If not more. Loyalty is quite simple, despite what pop culture conditions us to believe.

 

Loyalty is recognizing the worst but celebrating the best in each other. Loyalty is loving someone enough to let them know when they aren’t being the best version of themselves. Loyalty is lending ourselves and our light to the cause of protecting each other’s honor and spirit. Loyalty is devoting ourselves to be strong where our loved ones are vulnerable. Loyalty is not exploiting our friends’ fears and inhibitions when we learn them.

 

So, the million dollar question—Have I lost friends and romantic prospects because I refused to subscribe to the hype of being a  “ride or die” and all that comes with it? HYFR.

 

But I for damn sure am not apologetic for wanting to focus on acquiring perspective and motivation in the uplifting relationships I choose to keep. If you’re not holding me down by lifting me up,  you’re holding me back. So the better question is… “Can we get much higher?”

 

Best Wishes,

Getting Lifted & Staying Loyal

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Born and Raised in Wood bridge, Virginia Head Writer for Insomnia's Labyrinth

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