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11 Quotes From Black Feminists That Will Make Your Relationship Stronger

I was a freshman in college the first time I lost a best friend to her boyfriend.

We spent four solid years in high school joined at the hip, finishing each other's sentences.

We were each other's rocks when boys acted like jerks. When we went to separate colleges, she met her first love. Suddenly, we went from texting each other every day to barely managing a bi-monthly hello.

During winter break that same year, she cancelled on everything, from our dinner plans to our trips to the mall because her boyfriend was too busy to attend. Newsflash: He was never invited.

Ultimately, the phone stopped ringing and I'd basically been ghosted by a friend.

We all know it feels good to fall in love and find ways to make the other person happy. I, too, love to satisfy my significant others' needs when I'm in a relationship. Still, I pride myself on maintaining my own life.

Cristina Yang from "Grey's Anatomy" and her famous words echo in the back of my mind: "He's not the sun. You are."

To preserve the things that make me the woman I want to love, I continue striving for my lofty career goals, penciling in weekly girl time with my squad and occasionally find a cozy corner in Barnes & Noble for some solitude.

Balancing your needs with your love's maintains your personal identity as a woman and, to be quite honest, keeps the relationship alive.

For inspiration, I often turn to the wise words of noted black feminists.

Boss women like Oprah and Beyoncé hold the keys to being your own woman in any relationship. They understand balancing the love they have for their man with being professional giants and strong-minded feminists.

As well, writers like Warsan Shire and Maya Angelou have written at length about the soul-stirring love you should have for yourself -- in addition to the love you adorn your man with.

It's time to take heed to their advice.  

When your boyfriend keeps pressuring you to get married, but you're just not ready yet.

When he brags that you were the first to say "I love you."

When you feel you've become too co-dependent in your relationship.

When your boyfriend surprises you with dinner reservations, but you have to work late.

When he repeatedly forgets to wash the dishes after he cooks.

When he tells you to chill out during an argument.

When he doesn't want you to relocate for a new job promotion.

When you've acted bitchy all week and are ready to apologize for starting a petty argument.

When you want to watch "Orange Is The New Black" without him asking a million questions.

When his self-deprecation is sucking the fun out of your relationship.

When it's simply time to call it quits.