Everyone has that one church member, homemade hair butter making aunt, or Facebook friend who constantly reminds herself and others publicly and boldly that she will not be second in a man’s life.

She will be treated like a queen and admired by her future lover as he puts her on a pedestal with the upmost respect. All of that, and some more, will be done for the sake of preserving her self-worth.

You can quickly identify these women.

As a matter of fact, they’re very hard to miss as they update daily Facebook posts and tweets, usually congratulating themselves on their strong minds, independence, and from time to time, their celibacy as they wait proudly on their chance at “real” love. They’re the ones who typically post the most love memes, most likely of famous couples. They admire Megan Goode and DeVon Franklin’s relationship and are now determined to settle for nothing less than a God-fearing man.

These women have taken up space at our family cookouts for years, searching for another woman of “worth”, usually refer to each other as sister (and not by first names), and judgmentally discuss the boyfriend you bought to the family reunion. And any discussion, if you can take it that long, will ultimately lead to one of two things: how well they are doing as a single, strong, worthy woman or 2. how they are disgusted with how “these women” have such low standards.

Every encounter end with a quote, thought, or motivational pick me up after they have torn you to shreds for choosing a “ghetto and unbecoming” weave color.

By no means is the upliftment of women a crime. It is essential that we develop guidelines and instill a sense of confidence and high self-esteem in one another.

The problem is that when the mention of “worth” is done at an overkill level, it starts to look like a cry for help. Constantly proclaiming that you are worthy and talking about what you won’t tolerate starts to be interpreted as “I’m not worth much” and “I’m almost ready to settle for anybody who would proclaim our love publicly because I have a point to prove”.

See, when you begin to truly value yourself, everything BUT your mouth should be able to declare it.

There’s an old saying: The loudest people are the weakest. Walking around with your back ruler-straight and head held high doesn’t make a man look at you the way Jack did Rose on Titanic. Honestly, I believe that it creates the opposite effect.

It comes off as needy and newly renamed “thirsty”. Sometimes, the “worthy” woman is the bitter woman.

When self-worth is approached by deciding upon a strict guideline of what it is, the mark will be missed every time.

Making mental notes about what self-worth is not, allows you space to still be your own woman. Your worth does not diminish in value because your body fits nicely into a spaghetti strapped cocktail dress or you take just as many shots of whiskey as the fellas every now and then.

The long-term impact of the constant beating to present yourself appropriately to fit into the category of “wife material” is molding the minds of our daughters to think that life is not worth living if your primary goal isn’t finding the ideal man. The know your worth women are in fact, training up a generation to do the opposite by grading a woman’s womanhood by her ability to get a “good” man.

Women have been crossing their legs at strenuous vain points, tying up corsets, holding back on well deserved F-bombs, and drinking weak alcoholic beverages for centuries… all to prove ourselves “worthy”.

Stop it!

If it works for you then do it. But even if you find yourself uploading a brief twerking video or going on dates with multiple guys in one week, know that you are wonderful and worthy. Not by the confinements of our judgmental society but by your own freedom of choice.

And that is what makes it beautiful.

From one knowingly worthy woman to another, I can see your self worth by the way you dump the opinions of others in the same trash that you throw away those itchy pantyhose your Aunt says every “lady” should wear to church.

All women are queens, even if their crowns stay sitting on a dresser somewhere because they prefer to wear a ball cap.

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