It’s been a while since we heard from ‘90s pop starlet, Yvette Michele, who belted out club bangers like “Crazy,” and “I’m Not Feeling You,” among others. Yvette is singing a different tune, now: her recent Facebook status update about love went viral. Here’s part two of the conversation, check it out!
Yvette Michele – The trigger for my rant was personal: it was based on my coming out of a four-year relationship that I entered in to with flexible expectations, but later realized that had I followed my gut I might have ended up in a different place. I’ve processed the relationship for what it was, but my ex just seems to have walked away without learning the lesson. I was pretty pissed with his sense of entitlement after I rebuilt him. He’s perfect for the next person, now.
MzHanaG – Do you think it’s easy to start over?
Yvette Michele – Since relocating to Atlanta, I’ve reconnected with a lot of friends – some of whom are financially well off, educated, beautiful, and can cook – the total package – and they still can’t seem to find a husband, so, I would say that it isn’t easy to start over, no.
MzHanaG – Are you saying that if a woman is all of those things you mentioned, they should be married?
Yvette Michele – I’m saying that when you reach a certain level of success, and you’re letting someone new into your world, there’s a certain amount of risk factors that you consider; you want to be risk-tolerant, but not take on too much risk.
MzHanaG – Can you give examples of risks women take into account when dating?
Yvette Michele – Some consider dating outside their race; some people want only to date inside their religion; some want financial security. After a while, some women feel pushed into a corner and forced to make choices and sacrifice their original goals, just for a warm body.
MzHanaG – What’s the solution?
Yvette Michele – A man has to be able to fit into your world, meaning they have to be accepting of what you come with, and help manage the responsibilities and contribute to making the team a stronger unit. Often times a strong woman will attract a weak man and ends up taking the reins.
MzHanaG – What was your criteria for marrying?
Yvette Michele – I grew up in church and married young because it was the “right” thing to do. My marriage therefore, felt more like we were still boyfriend and girlfriend and I blamed myself. My relationships after my marriage were stunted because I was afraid to incorporate them into my world (because of my responsibilities). When I finally did make the choice, I was tired.
MzHanaG – Where are you at after your experiences?
Yvette Michele – We [ladies] still have to maintain our love for self. If the person we want is not readily available, that’s ok. I have lots of friends and family and I think that counts. I don’t think a lot of women feel complete unless they have a significant other, and I believe that point is arguable based on my perspective, which comes from having been married already. My friend says, “That’s easy for you to say. At least someone wanted to marry you.” I have another friend who has a mile-long list that has evolved as she’s gotten older. Her ideal man had to be educated, had to be successful in business, he couldn’t have kids, and he couldn’t be of a certain age difference. So she’s waited and she’s dated several men over the years and at 47, still isn’t married. She was selfish; growing up as an only child she never had to share. Growing up in the projects she was always trying to achieve, better. One of the reasons why she hasn’t found that one is because her values are displaced. She says she wants someone to be there for her, for someone to give her financial security, when really – she wants to check that box and be able to say she’s “Married.”
MzHanaG – Do you think there’s a stigma that follows unmarried people?
Yvette Michele – Yes, I have another friend who recruits staff for corporate offices (C.E.O.s and C.F.O.s), who says that it’s hard for her to place people who aren’t married because they’re seen as rejects. If that person is annoying, but they’re married, people think “Oh, they’re not so bad.” But, if that workhorse in the office who’s always riding co-workers to get things done, is single or gay, they will not be held in the same high regard, and I thought that was interesting.
MzHanaG – Have you witnessed this first hand?
Yvette Michele – After my record deal I went back into the corporate world, and it wasn’t easy to assimilate in the south because I was a northerner, and a single mother, which went against the code there at the time, and I didn’t readily discuss my personal life. Being married, I learned, definitely makes you more approachable and when you’re not married it causes pressure. But pressure makes things burst. You can end up in fruitless relationships when you operate under pressure. And when that relationship falters, just make sure you know who you are. Self-love is something that is taught, or something you earn through hardship. You have to be okay with loving yourself when you don’t have a partner.
Yvette Michele is currently considering a few new reality show opportunities. As well, she has returned to the studio to work on her new project, is in the early phases of her new semi-autobiographical book, and is teaming up with various producers to submit songs for new and established artists through her affiliation with ASCAP. Yvette says, “Moving to an environment where creative energies thrive, helped me re-calibrate and free myself from the confines and limitations that my former relationship presented. It has opened me up to new possibilities and I’m pretty excited about what’s next for me, personally and professionally.”