You’ve met someone extremely cool. I mean, like someone stop the world, everything around you disappears and no one’s in the room but you two kinda cool. You begin to converse and there are no hints of “stalker” or “crazy”…laughs are shared, flirting is at an all-time high, Frank Ocean begins to sing in your head and all of the sudden you’re beginning to think about forever. It might be premature, but, whatever. It’s a good feeling. You make plans to meet up again later in the week, exchange information (telephone numbers, BBM pins, twitter handles, facebook names, klout scores) and go your separate ways, dreaming about what may come from this enchanted encounter.
What happens next? Do you:
A) Go with your gut and meet up with the cool person, wind up falling in love and living happily ever after…
B) Consult a panel of strangers (comprised of so-called dating/marriage experts) only for them to tell you that you’ll never get married so you shouldn’t waste your time trying it?
I hope you chose A.
Now of course, this is mildly over exaggerated, but, the truth of the matter is, there has been a huge peak in interest and commentary over the last few years in the dating/marriage lives of African American women, especially those who are college educated…and people are genuinely listening and buying into it. The argument: that 70% of black women are unmarried, quite possibly because they are the LEAST desired women on the planet for partnership. The latest solution? According to writer Ralph Richard Banks (in an article for the Wall Street Journal that I’ve linked at the bottom of this page)…black women’s best hope is to marry a white guy. But, even that’s not fool proof. I, as a black, college educated woman will still face adversity, because White guys don’t normally find me attractive. And there aren’t enough black educated men to marry, because they’re either in jail, or not interested in me. What’s the deal here? Is it my weave? There’s got to be an explanation for this beyond the color of my skin. Or, not.
[Insert deep sigh]
I’ve never been one to subscribe to the “there are no good educated black men” idea, primarily because, #1, my father negates that, and #2, I went to a historically black university where I was surrounded by them on a daily basis. I’ve never had a problem (that wasn’t self-imposed) with finding guys who were willing to spend time with me on a date. I’ve also never really had a time where I went somewhere and didn’t get at least one guy that made a comment about my attractiveness, or… at least stared at me long enough for me to realize that he was undressing me with his eyes. I’ve seen countless black women that I admire become fabulous wives to fabulous black husbands, and for that reason, today, I still have hope for my future, regardless of what the numbers may say.
I think this attitude and negative talk is just another piece to add to my argument that we do not live in a post racial society. If I want to date a white man, or an Asian man, or a Latino man, or a green man…what does it matter? Color, at the end of the day, does not determine whether or not a man can be a provider, carries a good sense of humor, or will be a good father. On the same token, dating someone who is not black doesn’t guarantee that I will get married and have no troubles. Just as those good qualities transcend over color lines the bad ones do too. White guys cheat. Asian guys lie. There are Latino men on the down-low, and I’m sure the green guys do some foul stuff too. Guys are guys, and girls are girls…no matter the color. So maybe I will date a white guy. But at the end of the day, that choice will be made on his character…not because of his ethnic background. It’s time to stop buying in to the dumb stuff people feed us…we’re capable of making our own decisions.
One more thing. Everyone we date is not going to be the one we marry. If that were the case then… well we’d all have LOTS of spouses. Sometimes, a date is just an opportunity to get out of the house and have a good conversation, or at least provide good fodder for girl talk afterwards. Being single is not a death sentence. Honestly, being single saves you from a lot of unnecessary drama. Sometimes it’s better to just enjoy life, because focusing on what you don’t have will make you forget the things that you do have.
So, from today on…I will NOT read another article, or watch another news report on why I won’t ever get married, because that is NOT my reality, and it doesn’t have to be yours either.
What do you think? Discuss.
- Interracial Fix for Black Marriage (online.wsj.com)
- Milennials’ attiudes prove America isn’t post-racial (thegrio.com)