What Killmonger in Black Panther Taught Me About Love and Family

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*****Warning: This article contains SPOILERS for Black Panther, so if you haven’t seen it yet, you know what to do 😊

Last Sunday husbae and I went to see Black Panther and it was A-MAZING! Aside from all the deep lessons on politics, race, and culture, I also got some great takeaways from it on love and family.

1.       Deal with your past. Because of choices his family members made, Killmonger grew up without a father, in the hood. Worse, he KNEW that he had family out there somewhere, living a life way better than his, and had left him to face it alone. Understandably, he had a lot of bitterness and anger about that. So when he tried to make things better for his people, all that resentment was still there, driving his decisions.   The scene where he kills his own girlfriend, his ride or die, in order to kill Klaue and get to Wakanda, shows this in a big way. He was willing to sacrifice her life in order to accomplish what he thought was best. He wanted to help black people around the world, but he didn’t realize whatt he was destroying in order to do it. When he came to power, the unity that existed between the tribes of Wakanda was shattered, and civil war broke out.

When we let our pain define us and drive our decisions, we end up destroying everything we touch. Even if you have great intentions, you don’t have the discernment to go about it in a constructive way. When you get close to people, the pain you refuse to let go of will end up driving them away because you won’t know how to deal with stuff that triggers those memories. If you truly love your partner, you’ll do what it takes to get healing and deal with your issues so that they don’t end up dealing with you.

2.       Your decisions don’t just affect you. When Eric/Killmonger went to the ancestral plain to talk to his father, it broke my heart. His father said, “No tears for me?” Eric replied, “Everyone dies, that’s just the way things are around here.” His father decided to stay in the hood and live off illegal activities in order to accomplish what he saw as Black liberation. But the Wakandan values of family were lost in exchange. His son had become desensitized and shut himself off emotionally. He had no empathy for others, no moral code. He became a man bent on revenge. Tears flowed down his father’s face as he realized what he had sacrificed with his decisions, and the role he had played in his son becoming the man he was now.

 In my 4 years of parenting, I can honestly say that ALL of my habits show up in my kids, in some form or another. They don’t just listen to what I say, they listen to what I DO. So there’s been a LOT of adjustment on my part as I realize that I’ve got some things in me that I need to change in order for my kids to be successful, productive, and happy people. If I react emotionally every time they do something wrong, they learn to go by their feelings when making decisions. Everything you do now becomes a legacy for your kids and future generations.

What do you want YOUR legacy to your family to be?

Comment below on your takeaways from Black Panther. What did it teach you about love and family? And what legacy do you want to leave your kids? 

P.S. We have a FREE webinar about 3 Secrets to a Happy Healthy Marriage going on tomorrow night! Are you signed up yet? 

3 Powerful Secrets That STOPPED Our Money Fights

When Jono and I first got married, I used to dread our family budget meetings. We would only do them once a month or so, but it always resulted in both of us getting tensed and irritated with each other. He would come up with a plan for the money, and I would just nod and agree to hurry the meeting along. During the month though, I would do stuff that wasn’t in the plan, and we would end up arguing about it at the next budget meeting. I wanted to go out to eat, plan vacations, and go shopping. He wanted to get life insurance and start paying off our student loans.

After months (couple of years?)  of going through the same cycle, we decided to sign up for Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University class. And oh my goodness, it literally changed our relationship. The more I learned about money and the importance of budgeting, the more I learned about myself. I realized that my attitude towards our budget meetings was because I felt intimidated.

 I had never really followed a budget. Before I got married, all I did was make sure my bills were paid and my car was running. The rest of my money just kind of floated away as stuff came up. So when they introduced the concept of making a zero-balanced budget to us, it blew my mind. It was up to me to tell my money where it would go instead of the other way around. I had to think ahead of every possible scenario and plan for it in the budget instead of getting taken by surprise when stuff came up.

When we were done with that class, I felt so empowered. Now my husband and I were finally on the same page. Now I understood why he was constantly thinking of the long-term. I got why he was so adamant about leaving the savings account alone instead of dipping into it when we ran out of cash.

We decided to go ahead and make it our goal to put $1000 into an emergency fund. It felt so good when we saved up that money! It felt even better when our car blew a tire and we didn’t have to scramble to try to find money to replace it!

Now I realize that the main reason why couples fight over money is so simple: money highlights the differences in each person’s mindset.

Every time we talked about money, it was plain as day that Jono is more of a long-term thinker, while I’m more concerned with here and now. He likes to plan ahead and have everything laid out, but I’m more of a free spirit, just going with the flow. He likes to strategize and think through problems, but I tend to avoid things that intimidate me. I like to stay in my comfort zone.

So what do you do when you and your partner are opposites?

1.       Embrace your differences. Instead of trying to change your spouse or making them feel bad about they way they are, focus on their positive aspects. There’s something that each of you can learn from each other that will help you both become better people and enhance your relationship. I can honestly say now that Jono’s need for routines, plans, and strategies have helped me see the benefit in being more organized. I try to be more intentional about planning out my day and what I do with my time, as well as our money. He sees the benefit in being flexible and being able to go with the flow when things come up.

2.       Try to understand each other. There’s almost always a deeper reason for your partner’s actions. Jono didn’t realize that my lack of experience with money made me feel intimidated and anxious. I’m pretty sure that if he had, we would’ve taken Dave Ramsey’s class a lot sooner.

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 I didn’t realize how important it was to Jono that our family had financial security. I knew he had grown up in a household where money was very tight, but I didn’t realize how driven he was to make sure our family didn’t have to go through the things he had to go through as a child. He had to wear the same pants and shoes to school every day. They never turned on the AC so that the electricity bill would stay low. I never had to go through that, so when he was being super strict with our budget, I felt like he was trying to control me. We both needed to understand each other better, and thankfully now we do.

3.       Remember that you’re on the same team. I used to feel like Jono was trying to control me when we would have our budget meetings. He thought that I didn’t care about his wishes. We were both wrong. When we took that class together, a part of a relationship finally clicked into place. We decided to be intentional about working together on our budget instead of Jono coming up with a plan by himself. When we did that, I found it easier to speak up about the things I really wanted to do, and we found ways to put it in our budget. It was so simple now.

Working out our money differences made us so much happier as a couple. It made us appreciate our differences instead of trying so hard to make each other change. And that’s why our relationship is so amazing!

Want to learn more about how to make your differences STRENGTHEN your marriage instead of weakening it? Sign up today for our FREE training!

Talk to you soon!

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