What Does It Mean When You Dream About Someone Who Was Your First Love?

Don’t go running back to him just yet.

It is said that a person’s first love is their strongest. While you may break up and find some other life partner in the future, no one ever forgets the first person who stole their heart.

It shouldn’t be surprising, then, that a person’s first ex can frequently appear in their dreams. And yet, every time it happens, it’s jolting. What does it mean when you dream about someone you used to love?

“What does my dream mean?” you may ask yourself. “Does this mean I don’t love my current partner?”

Before you go jumping to conclusions or making any rash decisions, here are some dream interpretations of what it means when you dream about someone.

1. You want him to acknowledge your worth.

First loves are intense, and if yours happened when you were in your teen years, it was probably even more intense.

If your first breakup was a devastating one that ended on poor terms, dreaming about your ex might be an unconscious attempt at wish fulfillment.

If you feel as if your first love stopped acknowledging your worth at one point, then you might still have the desire in the back of your mind for them to see how far you’ve come and how much you’ve accomplished. Your subconscious wants to prove yourself to this person and make them realize they made a mistake by dumping you. Pride can be quite the devil.

2. You’re projecting your past love onto your current love.

If your first love did something incredibly hurtful, such as cheating, then you are probably wary or even scared that other men will do the same thing to you. Your current partner may be the type who would never cheat on you, but because your ex did, you’re subconsciously expecting it to happen again.

If you have a dream about your ex hurting you the way he did the first time, or about your current partner hurting you the exact same way your first love did, then you’re projecting your past experience onto your present one.

3. You just can’t forget them.

Dreaming passionately or longingly about your first love may startle you, but if you think about it, it’s not that crazy. Your first love will always be a part of you, which means that there is always the chance that it will seep into your dreams.

People dream about all sorts of things that have happened in their lives, reliving or even rewriting those memories. If you have a dream that you’re making love with your first boyfriend, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you want him back or that you don’t love your current partner.

The feelings you had for your first love were strong, and that kind of love doesn’t disappear forever, no matter how long it’s been or how “over it” you are.

4. You still have unresolved issues.

Your first love (and your first breakup) probably left you with all kinds of wounds — wounds that may still be open. Your first boyfriend may have delivered a serious blow to your self-esteem, and that kind of a hit can hurt for a long time.

According to Scientific American, humans try to work out their subconscious or complex emotions in their dreams. If you’re still struggling with loving yourself or developing a sense of self-confidence, then it’s not unusual that the source of that problem (AKA your ex) would appear in your dreams.

5. You’re having problems in your current relationship.

If you’re currently having relationship problems, your unconscious mind may resort to dreaming about a time and place when you felt extremely happy or loved. When a person is made to endure something painful or trying, it is a natural coping mechanism to revisit a positive memory and even over-idealize it.

In this case, dreaming about your first love may just be your unconscious mind’s way of handling your current problems. However, if your relationship has been on the rocks for a while, a dream about your first love may be trying to show you what desirable qualities your new man is lacking.

6. You’re still looking for closure.

When a passionate relationship comes to a close and you lose someone important to you, it’s hard to bounce back. Someone you used to spend all of your time with is gone and suddenly there is a void in your life where that person used to be. That empty feeling is what prompts people to want closure.

If matters between you and your first love ended abruptly or badly, you may feel like the only way you’ll get over it is if you can somehow tie it up in a neat little bow. But life doesn’t work out like that. You have to realize that other people won’t give you closure. The only kind you’ll get is the kind you can give yourself.

So if you’re having persistent dreams about your first love years after you broke up, you may want to consider taking a closer look at those old emotions.

7. You’re afraid your current relationship won’t last.

People learn from past experiences. If you’re feeling like your present relationship is going off the rails, it would make sense that your unconscious mind would start comparing it to your first relationship. How did that relationship end? What mistakes did you make? What mistakes did he make?

Your mind tries to draw parallels to help you sort through your current predicament. Identify the main source of emotion in your dream and ruminate on it for a little while. Who knows, maybe you’ll learn something from your dreams after all.

 

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How The Coronavirus Pandemic May Affect Dating Long-Term, According To 7 Experts

People keep referring to life after the world “gets back to normal,” but what will normal look like? After months of self-isolation and anxiety, social distancing will most likely affect dating long-term. But according to experts, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Instead of greeting each other with a handshake or hug, perhaps people will keep their distance. Until you get to know someone, you might not feel the need to rush into a no-strings-attached hookup. And while many daters will probably continue conducting themselves as they typically would, the fear provoked by the pandemic may continue to loom overhead.

“People don’t like to be told what to do, and in addition, very few people do what is best for them,” Lynell Ross, a certified health and wellness coach, behavior change specialist, and relationship expert, tells Bustle. Although public health officials are recommending social distancing for months to come, that doesn’t guarantee everyone will follow those guidelines.

“It will be up to each individual to decide what advice they will listen to, and how they will proceed with dating and socializing,” Ross says. And for many, that will mean continuing to social distance and connect with partners over dating apps, video chat, and text.

Two Asian woman chatting and drinking coffee at cafe.
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Therapists Believe Dating Will Slow Down

As people replace in-person meetings with online conversations, the pace of dating has been gradually slowing down. And that’s a trend Jaime Bronstein, LCSW, a psychotherapist and licensed clinical social worker, sees continuing into the future.

“Daters are emotionally connecting more, which is going to impact dating long-term in a positive way,” she tells Bustle. “[They] are naturally talking more and opening up to each other and really connecting.”

Those looking for serious relationships will see the benefits of getting to know their potential partners a bit better before becoming too invested. What do they want for the future? What are their likes and dislikes? By chatting online and having these discussions early on, they’ll get their answers upfront.

If you did end up meeting someone during quarantine, experts believe your relationship will likely be off to a good start. “Coming out of this, couples will feel more connected and bonded and stronger overall,” Bronstein says.

Dating Coaches Say People Will Be Pickier

According to Lana Otoya, a professional dating coach from Millennialships, dating will eventually go back to the way it was pre-pandemic.

“This is because so much of dating is based on sex and sexual chemistry, and this is something that comes across greatly only while speaking to others in person,” she tells Bustle. “Humans want to connect in person, so once the bans and lockdowns are lifted, dating life will go back to normal.”

Otoya predicts that people will feel that magnetic energy, just like they always have. But one thing that might change? How good you are at weeding out potential partners from those you have nothing in common with.

Since people have been using Zoom and FaceTime to talk to potential dates, they’ve gotten used to reading people and figuring out what they’re truly like, right from their living rooms. And that skill will carry into the outside world, Otoya says, and make for stronger relationships.

A Dating App Founder Thinks Virtual Dating Isn’t Going Anywhere

The world was once swipe-based, Dawoon Kang, the co-founder and co-CEO of the dating app Coffee Meets Bagel, tells Bustle. But going forward, she predicts daters will be in less of a rush.

“We can take the time to go deeper with one person at a time — give each person a proper chance,” Kang says. “I think ‘slow dating’ can actually be a faster way to find that type of genuine connection you might be looking for.”

Singles are also more open to using virtual dating than ever before. “For the past month, we’ve been surveying our US users on a weekly basis to see how the pandemic is affecting their dating lives,” she says. “The biggest trend we’ve noticed is that singles are increasingly becoming more open to virtual dating.”

During the week of April 13, 84% of US singles said they were open to a virtual first date, Kang says, and nearly half plan to text or video chat with their matches, while 38% plan to call more.

Public Health Experts Predict People Will (Literally) Take Up Space

Although it’s only been a couple of months since people last mixed and mingled in public, social distancing rules will be ingrained in people’s brains for a while, Carol Winner, MPH, MSE, a public health expert and founder of give space, tells Bustle. And that’ll stick with you as you venture back into public spaces.

“Proximity is a new issue for many people, and it will have an impact on the way singles date for at least a year,” she says. “Less kissing on the first date or even holding hands is to be expected.” Picture yourself going for a socially-distant walk, or having lengthy convos on the phone, before meeting up IRL for the first time.

“It’s not about being modest or prude; it’s about community health,” Winner says. “Recovering from the effects of a global pandemic doesn’t happen overnight, and some things will change indefinitely. People will be vigilant about who they spend time with within the next year or so.”

A Behavioral Expert Foresees A Return To Singledom

Tracy Crossley, a behavioral relationship expert, believes more people will want to remain single after coronavirus, as it’ll be a while before they feel comfortable around strangers again. Fear will play a role, she says, so you may find other ways to be social that don’t involve dating, kissing, or having sex.

That said, it’s possible you’ll respond by jumping into bed with someone who isn’t necessarily a good match, simply because you missed being around people, Crossley says, adding there are many possible outcomes.

The third option, she says, is that people will continue to take time to self-reflect and think about what they want in a partner, and then slowly get to know someone without being in a rush. “People either come together or go the other direction,” she says, “and it will continue to be a diverse universe as individuals are not all the same.”

Matchmakers Expect Your Priorities To Shift

People’s perception of their “ideal partner” will change after the coronavirus pandemic, Susan Trombetti, a matchmaker and CEO of Exclusive Matchmaking, tells Bustle. “We are going through a life-changing situation making […] dating wants and needs a lot clearer,” she says. Facing a global health crisis can reframe your priorities, what you want, and where you’d like to see your life go.

Communication skills have also been improving for everyone stuck at home, as we text and video chat with cute strangers. “Even though touching in a relationship is bonding, so is talking about your hopes and dreams,” Trombetti says. “Whether consciously or not, this will carry over into relationships for a while, which is a plus.”

Psychiatrists Warn That A New Vetting Process Is In Order

Psychiatrists believe that everyone’s fears won’t be alleviated until, to some degree, a vaccine is found for COVID-19. “Some level of caution may be simmering in the background, but whether or not someone is vaccinated for COVID-19 will not likely be at the top of people’s minds when dating three years from now,” Dr. Margaret Seide, a board-certified psychiatrist, tells Bustle.

Until then, she says people likely adopt a stronger vetting process when it comes to dating. “There will be much communication prior to meeting up,” Seide says. “Daters will be selective about with whom they are willing to meet.” And that may mean asking more personal questions, including their line of work and who they live with. “People will essentially be weighing out your corona exposure risk factors before meeting you,” she says. “That’s reasonable; it’s a new world.”

If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC or NHS 111 in the UK for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support.

 

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Zoom Social Pressure Is Rising As The Novelty Wears Off

Remember a few weeks ago, when Zoom emerged as the digital solution to social distancing? All of a sudden, videoconferencing became not only a way to take meetings from home, but also a way to check in on friends, date, and even party. It was a golden age of Zoom happy hours, Zoom movie nights, Zoom brunches. But as we reach what feels like week 2,000 of social distancing, the mere sight of the illustrated blue app icon can conjure feelings of social anxiety.

As someone with a typically non-existent social calendar, I was surprised to find that it only took a global pandemic for people to start making plans with me. People who I never talked to on the phone before are sending me Zoom invitations to “catch up.” I even fielded an invite to a virtual poetry reading from my college’s alumni association. According to some fans-turned-fatigued users of the app, the same dread that once came with an overbooked social calendar now follows a packed Zoom meeting schedule.

“I’ve just come to the realization that if I wouldn’t entertain friends in my home every single night of the week IRL, I don’t need to do it on Zoom, either,” says Jeanne, 32, a first-time WFH employee. She adds that dealing with anxiety around coronavirus has made her “more tired and less interested in socializing than usual,” despite a short-lived affair with video-chat hangouts.

Dr. Hilarie Cash, PhD, LMHC, CSAT, WSGC, and founder of reSTART Life, a treatment center for digital addictions, is exhausted from “impersonal” online meetings herself. “We don’t quite look in each other’s eyes [on a video chat], or pick up the nuances of body language,” she tells Bustle. But most importantly, she points out, “We don’t get to experience limbic resonance — which is our birthright as social animals.” Limbic resonance is the energetic exchange that occurs with IRL interactions. “The in-person experience (if we feel safe and cared for) releases a bouquet of neurochemicals in our limbic brains that keeps us well regulated emotionally and physiologically.” Without it, Dr. Cash says, we don’t get to feel the satisfaction of being connected in the same way we do IRL.

Hailey, 21, who has worked from home for two years, says that she “feels guilty,” but she’s more interested in having some relaxing quarantine downtime. “If I accepted every virtual call or event or hangout I’ve been invited to, I could quite literally be busier than I was before.”

brittany packnett cunningham does not do remixes.

@MsPackyetti

As someone who had to spend sometimes 10 straight hours on Zoom before this pandemic, a piece of advice:

Always ask yourself what needs to be a meeting or what can be an email, a recorded message, or a deck that you send out.

8 back to back hours on a screen is not a life.

Melina, 33, tells Bustle that personal video calls are starting to feel invasive. “My home is my sacred space and having to constantly share it with others is starting to feel like boundary crossing, even when they are close friends.” Having to push the litter box out of frame or trying to shush her infant inconspicuously off screen is tiring. “I feel like I always have to be ‘on’. Knowing that my face is stretched across someone’s computer screen like a spotlight makes me feel like I have to exert a lot of energy to seem engaged, even more than in person,” Melina adds. But the most stressful part about accepting an invitation for a social Zoom meeting, according to Melina, is finding an excuse to hang up. “We’re all stuck at home with nothing to do, so there are limited reasons to end the call and it’s hard to find a nice way to do so.”

While everyone that I spoke to could recognize the privilege and utility that Zoom provides them professionally, they’re not looking to spend more time on the app than absolutely necessary. “Honestly, I just want to get the hell away from screens at the end of the day,” Jeanne says, despite her need and understanding of the desire for connection.

Isaac Fitzgerald🤞🏻🖤

@IsaacFitzgerald

Had a friend say they couldn’t make a zoom cocktail party because they have another one scheduled for that same time period so yes you can still feel unpopular during the apocalypse.

Contrary to the illusion that “face to face” screen time provides, Dr. Cash says it cannot evoke the level neurological connection we crave while we’re practicing social distancing, “and, therefore, it actually drains us rather than replenishing us.”

That said, seeing someone’s face is more neurologically stimulating than simply hearing their voicea 2013 study published in Cyberpsychology: Journal Of Psychosocial Research found. So instead of ignoring your friend’s noble attempts at fostering community during an isolating time, strike a balance; space out your social engagements, or feel free politely decline. It’s important to “manage the stress of isolation,” Dr. Cash says, so do whatever makes you feel most peaceful at home. If that’s opening up your living room to a gallery of digital faces every night, lean into that desire and socialize. But if that’s closing your screen at the end of the day and disengaging, that’s fine, too. Treat your virtual social life the same way you would treat your IRL social life.

 

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You’re Probably Going To Marry The Wrong Person — And This Is Why

But there’s good news, too.

According to your exacting standards, you have tried to do everything right in choosing a spouse.

You made your list of must-have qualities to which they appear to have, you put them through a thorough vetting process, by which I mean you dated them and met their family and friends, and you made sure not to show them your flaws and less-attractive qualities.

You’ve done everything right and know that you have chosen the exact right partner for you. Or have you?

In an opinion piece, writer Alain de Botton stated that, while we go to great lengths to avoid marrying the wrong person, in actuality, we really do it all the time.

“Partly, it’s because we have a bewildering array of problems that emerge when we try to get close to others. We seem normal only to those who don’t know us very well. In a wiser, more self-aware society than our own, a standard question on any early dinner date would be: ‘And how are you crazy?'” de Botton said.

While crazy is a word that makes me uncomfortable for its insensitivity towards mental health issues, I understand what he’s saying: all of us are flawed beings with our own issues and it would be nice if we could be honest from the start.

For instance, if we knew that our potential spouse absolutely loathed pickles and we were from a family who pickled everything, we could decide in advance if that particular behavior was something we could or wanted to deal with.

“Marriage ends up as a hopeful, generous, infinitely kind gamble taken by two people who don’t know yet who they are or who the other might be, binding themselves to a future they cannot conceive of and have carefully avoided investigating,” he added.

In the past, people married for logical and practical reasons, but these marriages of reasons weren’t, in fact, reasonable at all; they were pragmatic, close-minded and deceitful.

Now, we have the marriage of feeling, and what matters is that the two individuals are drawn together by instinct and they feel in their hearts that their union is right.

De Botton theorizes that, while we think we’re looking for happiness in marriage, what we really want is familiarity. We’re looking to recreate (with our adult relationship) the feelings we knew so well in our childhood.

“The love most of us will have tasted early on was often confused with other, more destructive dynamics: feelings of wanting to help an adult who was out of control, of being deprived of a parent’s warmth or scared of his anger, of not feeling secure enough to communicate our wishes,” he continued. “We marry the wrong people because we don’t associate being loved with feeling happy.”

The good news is that it doesn’t matter if we discover that we’ve married the wrong person.

Instead of getting rid of them, we need to get rid of the idea that the perfect person who can meet all our needs and satisfy all of our desires actually exists.

“The person who is best suited to us is not the person who shares our every taste (he or she doesn’t exist), but the person who can negotiate differences in taste intelligently — the person who is good at disagreement… Rather than some notional idea of perfect complementary, it is the capacity to tolerate differences with generosity that is the true marker of the ‘not overly wrong’ person. Compatibility is an achievement of love; it must not be its precondition,” he concluded.

So, every person is wrong for us until they grow into being right for us.

 

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Am I Settling? Here’s How To Tell, According To Women Who’ve Done It

OK, let’s get real. “Am I settling?” isn’t always a question that most people want to utter out loud, but I bet it’s one that’s crossed more than a few minds every now and then. If you’re wondering something similar in your current relationship, you’ve come to the right place. I come bearing some honest AF words of wisdom from women who’ve been there.

In a recent Reddit AskWomen thread, women were asked to share when they realized they were settling in their relationships. And the women who responded did not hold back. Each one got brutally honest about the aspects of their relationship that made them realize that they were settling, from keeping too many secrets from their friends to doing all of the emotional heavy lifting.

You may find yourself saying, “It me!” to every single one of their responses, or you might find yourself not relating to any at all. But what’s interesting here is that, while some of the women’s stories are similar, they’re pretty much all unique in their own way. Settling for you might mean something totally different than settling for someone else. Read along and, if nothing else, take their stories as a sign that you’re not alone.

Couple With Problems Having Disagreement In Bed
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If their relationship was a team, she’d be the MVP.

I realized I was settling when I noticed I was carrying the relationship both emotionally and financially. Whenever I thought about us together in the future, I noticed I wasn’t going to be able to count on him to help raise a family. He ended the relationship for his own reasons own but by doing that he did me a huge favor.

/u/teenytinyninja

Their issues never went away.

When I was crying every day about the same issue that never changed.

/u/curly-hair07

An absence of cons was her only pro.

When the only positive about being with him was a large absence of negatives.

/u/Miss_Cegenation

She went on a solo trip and didn’t miss them.

When I went on a trip alone and I didn’t miss him.

I should have clued in when I admitted to a friend that our sex life bored me and that I didn’t truly love him. But I wanted to want him. It took travelling solo for me to acknowledge I was happier on my own.

/u/zugzwang_03

She couldn’t see them in her future.

When I fantasized about the next ~5 years, he was never in those dreams. I’d find ways to conveniently dismiss him from my plans.

/u/MaddiKate

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She was constantly making excuses for them.

When I thought about him, I’d think, “At least he isn’t…” I realized I was having trouble coming up with anything both good and truthful to say about him. I was internally justifying getting less than the bare minimum out of the relationship.

/u/ivanasleep

She was no longer attracted to them.

When I found literally everyone else around me more attractive than him

/u/cephasterron

They brought up divorce during the proposal.

When he proposed by saying, “let’s just try it and keep divorce as an option.” We divorced after seven miserable years.

/u/yer-mommy

She purposely spared her friends the details.

When I would talk to my friends about him I would omit details. You know, things that would make him look bad in their eyes? I would only talk about the good stuff….and if I talked about the bad….I’d leave things out so it didn’t seem AS bad.

/u/MalibootyCutie

She was doing all of the work in the relationship.

I realized I was doing most of the work in the relationship just to keep it afloat and when I asked him for more effort he would always make it seem like I was greedy for asking that. When the relationship ended, I realized most of my sadness was not having someone but I didn’t miss him. I was sad that I wouldn’t have that +1 to come with me to try a new restaurant or be there during Christmas but it was more about that than missing the actual person. The breakup gave me space to see just how unhealthy our relationship was.

/u/croptopweather

They didn’t clean their house for months.

When I came home after a few months at college and he hadn’t cleaned once. With animals in the house!

/u/museworm

SFIO CRACHO/Shutterstock

She would get excited when they couldn’t hang out.

When I knew he wasn’t available to hangout and I got excited about my alone time.

/u/acuteamericium

They were using each other.

When I realized that I was using him as a space filler and he was using me as a trophy.

/u/LittleMart1an

She was totally fine on her own.

When I realized I did everything alone. I had my fun life with friends, my work life and my bf life. Your fun life should include your bf but it didn’t. I went out without him, I went on vacation without him. I didn’t need him and I didn’t miss him. And slowly I stopped loving him.

/u/SannieNator

She was jealous of her single friends.

When I started envying my single friends for being able to do whatever they wanted without having to think about how it will affect a partner.

/u/yogamode

They didn’t prioritize her.

When I realized I would never be a priority. Any plans I tried to make were met with a “maybe” at best, which was code for “if I don’t get any better offers”. Then what sealed the deal was that we lived together and I would get anxiety having to come home from work and be with him because he was just always so nasty to me about anything I said or did. When I realized I wasn’t allowing myself to be myself is when I knew I was settling and was unhappy.

/u/C0mmensalism

Hanging with them felt like a chore.

Spending time with him began feeling like a chore.

/u/space-cowboyy_

The only thing keeping her in the relationship was money.

When I realized the only reason I was staying was because I couldn’t afford financially to leave. Best decision I ever made to risk it and go.

/u/gratefulauthorartist

Everything her friends warned her about turned out to be true.

When I saw that he was matching up more to the things others who care about me were trying to say, that I refused to listen to, because I believed he was better than he was. He ended up dumping me but I realized how much of myself I gave to someone who didn’t deserve or appreciate it.

/u/blondegirlinterupted

They had to be reminded to groom themselves.

When I had to tell him that he should shower and brush his teeth at some point in the 24 hours before I came over.

/u/thotsupdoc

If you feel like you might be settling, these stories may remind you that you’re not alone and that there can be a light at the end of this tunnel.

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Tales of Rock – SPECIAL REPORT: Little Richard, Founding Father of Rock Who Broke Musical Barriers, Dead at 87

Pianist-singer behind “Tutti Frutti,” “Good Golly Miss Molly” and “Long Tall Sally” set the template that a generation of musicians would follow

Little Richard, a founding father of rock and roll whose fervent shrieks, flamboyant garb, and joyful, gender-bending persona embodied the spirit and sound of that new art form, died Saturday. He was 87. The musician’s son, Danny Jones Penniman, confirmed the pioneer’s death to Rolling Stone, but said the cause of death was unknown.

Starting with “Tutti Frutti” in 1956, Little Richard cut a series of unstoppable hits – “Long Tall Sally” and “Rip It Up” that same year, “Lucille” in 1957, and “Good Golly Miss Molly” in 1958 – driven by his simple, pumping piano, gospel-influenced vocal exclamations and sexually charged (often gibberish) lyrics. “I heard Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis, and that was it,” Elton John told Rolling Stone in 1973. “I didn’t ever want to be anything else. I’m more of a Little Richard stylist than a Jerry Lee Lewis, I think. Jerry Lee is a very intricate piano player and very skillful, but Little Richard is more of a pounder.”

Although he never hit the top 10 again after 1958, Little Richard’s influence was massive. The Beatles recorded several of his songs, including “Long Tall Sally,” and Paul McCartney’s singing on those tracks – and the Beatles’ own “I’m Down” – paid tribute to Little Richard’s shredded-throat style. His songs became part of the rock and roll canon, covered over the decades by everyone from the Everly Brothers, the Kinks, and Creedence Clearwater Revival to Elvis Costello and the Scorpions.

Little Richard’s stage persona – his pompadours, androgynous makeup and glass-bead shirts – also set the standard for rock and roll showmanship; Prince, to cite one obvious example, owed a sizable debt to the musician. “Prince is the Little Richard of his generation,” Richard told Joan Rivers in 1989 before looking at the camera and addressing Prince. “I was wearing purple before you was wearing it!”

Born Richard Wayne Penniman on December 5th, 1932, in Macon, Georgia, he was one of 12 children and grew up around uncles who were preachers. “I was born in the slums. My daddy sold whiskey, bootleg whiskey,” he told Rolling Stone in 1970. Although he sang in a nearby church, his father Bud wasn’t supportive of his son’s music and accused him of being gay, resulting in Penniman leaving home at 13 and moving in with a white family in Macon. But music stayed with him: One of his boyhood friends was Otis Redding, and Penniman heard R&B, blues and country while working at a concession stand at the Macon City Auditorium.

After performing at the Tick Tock Club in Macon and winning a local talent show, Penniman landed his first record deal, with RCA, in 1951. (He became “Little Richard” when he about 15 years old, when the R&B and blues worlds were filled with acts like Little Esther and Little Milton; he had also grown tired with people mispronouncing his last name as “Penny-man.”) He learned his distinctive piano style from Esquerita, a South Carolina singer and pianist who also wore his hair in a high black pompadour.

For the next five years, Little Richard’s career advanced only fitfully; fairly tame, conventional singles he cut for RCA and other labels didn’t chart. “When I first came along, I never heard any rock & roll,” he told Rolling Stone in 1990. “When I started singing [rock & roll], I sang it a long time before I presented it to the public because I was afraid they wouldn’t like it. I never heard nobody do it, and I was scared.”

By 1956, he was washing dishes at the Greyhound bus station in Macon (a job he had first taken a few years earlier after his father was murdered and Little Richard had to support his family). By then, only one track he’d cut, “Little Richard’s Boogie,” hinted at the musical tornado to come. “I put that little thing in it,” he told Rolling Stone in 1970 of the way he tweaked with his gospel roots. “I always did have that thing, but I didn’t know what to do with the thing I had.”

During this low point, he sent a tape with a rough version of a bawdy novelty song called “Tutti Frutti” to Specialty Records in Chicago. He came up with the song’s famed chorus — “a wop bob alu bob a wop bam boom” — while bored washing dishes. (He also wrote “Long Tall Sally” and “Good Golly Miss Molly” while working that same job.)

By coincidence, label owner and producer Art Rupe was in search of a lead singer for some tracks he wanted to cut in New Orleans, and Penniman’s howling delivery fit the bill. In September 1955, the musician cut a lyrically cleaned-up version of “Tutti Frutti,” which became his first hit, peaking at 17 on the pop chart. “’Tutti Frutti really started the races being together,” he told Rolling Stone in 1990. “From the git-go, my music was accepted by whites.”

Its followup, “Long Tall Sally,” hit Number Six, becoming his the highest-placing hit of his career. For just over a year, the musician released one relentless and arresting smash after another. From “Long Tall Sally” to “Slippin’ and Slidin,’” Little Richard’s hits – a glorious mix of boogie, gospel, and jump blues, produced by Robert “Bumps” Blackwell — sounded like he never stood still. With his trademark pompadour and makeup (which he once said he started wearing so that he would be less “threatening” while playing white clubs), he was instantly on the level of Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and other early rock icons, complete with rabid fans and mobbed concerts. “That’s what the kids in America were excited about,” he told Rolling Stone in 1970. “They don’t want the falsehood — they want the truth.”

As with Presley, Lewis and other contemporaries, Penniman also was cast in early rock and roll movies like Don’t Knock the Rock (1956) and The Girl Can’t Help It (1957). In a sign of how segregated the music business and radio were at the time, though, Pat Boone’s milquetoast covers of “Tutti Frutti” and “Long Tall Sally,” both also released in 1956, charted as well if not higher than Richard’s own versions. (“Boone’s “Tutti Frutti” hit Number 12, surpassing Little Richard’s by nine slots.) Penniman later told Rolling Stone that he made sure to sing “Long Tall Sally” faster than “Tutti Frutti” so that Boone couldn’t copy him as much.

But then the hits stopped, by his own choice. After what he interpreted as signs – a plane engine that seemed to be on fire and a dream about the end of the world and his own damnation – Penniman gave up music in 1957 and began attending the Alabama Bible school Oakwood College, where he was eventually ordained a minister. When he finally cut another album, in 1959, the result was a gospel set called God Is Real.

His gospel music career floundering, Little Richard returned to secular rock in 1964. Although none of the albums and singles he cut over the next decade for a variety of labels sold well, he was welcomed back by a new generation of rockers like the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan (who used to play Little Richard songs on the piano when he was a kid). When Little Richard played the Star-Club in Hamburg in 1964, the opening act was none other than the Beatles. “We used to stand backstage at Hamburg’s Star-Club and watch Little Richard play,” John Lennon said later. “He used to read from the Bible backstage and just to hear him talk we’d sit around and listen. I still love him and he’s one of the greatest.”

By the 1970s, Little Richard was making a respectable living on the rock oldies circuit, immortalized in a searing, sweaty performance in the 1973 documentary Let the Good Times Roll. During this time, he also became addicted to marijuana and cocaine while, at the same time, returning to his gospel roots.

Little Richard also dismantled sexual stereotypes in rock & roll, even if he confused many of his fans along the way. During his teen years and into his early rock stardom, his stereotypical flamboyant personality made some speculate about his sexuality, even if he never publicly came out. But that flamboyance didn’t derail his career. In the 1984 biography The Life and Times of Little Richard (written with his cooperation), he denounced homosexuality as “contagious … It’s not something you’re born with.” (Eleven years later, he said in an interview with Penthouse that he had been “gay all my life.”)

Later in life, he described himself as “omnisexual,” attracted to both men and women. But during an interview with the Christian-tied Three Angels Broadcasting Group in 2017, he suddenly denounced gay and trans lifestyles: “God, Jesus, He made men, men, he made women, women, you know? And you’ve got to live the way God wants you to live. So much unnatural affection. So much of people just doing everything and don’t think about God.”

Yet none of that seemed to damage his mystique or legend. In the 1980s, he appeared in movies like Down and Out in Beverly Hills and in TV shows like Full House and Miami Vice. In 1986, he was one of the 10 original inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and in 1993, he was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammys. His last known recording was in 2010, when he cut a song for a tribute album to gospel singer Dottie Rambo.

In the years before his death, Little Richard, who was by then based in Nashville, still performed periodically. Onstage, though, the physicality of old was gone: Thanks to hip replacement surgery in 2009, he could only perform sitting down at his piano. But his rock and roll spirit never left him. “I’m sorry I can’t do it like it’s supposed to be done,” he told one audience in 2012. After the audience screamed back in encouragement, he said – with a very Little Richard squeal — “Oh, you gonna make me scream like a white girl!”

God Bless Little Richard! Rest in Peace.

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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13 Inescapable Signs Of A Dead-End, Toxic Relationship That Reveal How To Know When To Break Up

Is your relationship healthy?

Most of us long to be in a loving, committed relationship. So if you are starting to get some signs of a toxic relationship that tell you your current partner might not be the right person for you, the instinct is to close your eyes to the things you see.

This will help you start rationalizing — to make a deal with the devil, so to speak — and stay put.

Unfortunately, most relationships don’t last forever. But figuring out how to know when to break up isn’t always easy, even if all of the signs are right in front of you.

Here’s a hint: if you’re hard at work ignoring the signs of an unhealthy and even toxic relationship, it’s probably time to leave. Making a mess out of your life because you were too afraid to say goodbye isn’t worth it.

Here are 13 signs of a dead-end, toxic relationship that mean it’s time for you to break up and move forward.

1. Communication is a struggle

You are aware that your partner is not empathetic and always gets defensive if you try to talk to them.

If you don’t have empathy, you don’t have anything.

2. You don’t touch each other

Your partner limits contact, you feel marginalized and not important most of the time. Perhaps this is the “they’re just not that into you” category.

You have to face the truth about that and not tolerate settling for crumbs.

3. You can’t connect with one another

You were initially attracted physically, but don’t end up feeling there is a person of substance there to connect with.

4. They seem to get angry with everything

Your partner is very reactive — more than warrants the situation. If you think it’s bad now…

5. There’s no discussion, only arguing

Accepting differences is part of being a grown-up. In your primary relationship, there will always be differences. But if your partner can’t handle you not agreeing with them, that is a major red flag.

6. They belittle your ideals and beliefs

Your values and beliefs are so polarized. If you can’t bear to live with someone who thinks your ideas aren’t valid — don’t.

7. You want to spend more time apart than together

You find yourself wanting space a lot. It’s the opposite of feeling like you can’t get enough of your partner or can’t wait to see them at the end of the day.

Maybe in your head, you want to be partnered, but your body is telling you something different.

8. You feel like you have to pretend to be someone else

You don’t feel like you can be yourself. You feel anxious, or have the feeling you are walking on eggshells. Run for the hills!

9. They try to control you

Your partner is super clingy or super controlling and you can’t talk to them about it. This is a huge red flag!

10. Your partner doesn’t seem to want to make you a part of their life

You don’t feel loved and cherished much of the time. You don’t get the feeling your partner is thrilled to be in the world with you. You’ve been together for three years and they still don’t introduce you as their boyfriend/girlfriend… please!

11. Your loved ones don’t like them

Your family and friends all are warning you. Take a hard look.

12. You don’t see a future together

You don’t have that total green light feeling of seeing a future together. Your body keeps giving you a yellow or red signal instead of green.

13. Your partner doesn’t seem to want to fix problems

You seem to be the only one in the relationship who understands that you have to work on things, the only one who wants to bring conscious intentionality to your communication.

It is so important to marry the right person! Seek the truth and listen to your instincts. They will save you.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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