Yesterday while scrolling through my news feed, looking for interesting content to read on Facebook, I came upon a meme that more than satisfied my appetite for literary consumption. The meme featured a couple in a noticeably suggestive pose. It was a photo of a very attractive black woman straddling a handsome white man, but that’s not what prompted me to write this article. An attractive couple of any racial/ethnic pairing is not an uncommon sight. It’s not the spectacle it once was in the days of our past. *Historical fact, miscegenation (interracial dating/marriage) was part of the reason why certain states to required couples to apply for marriage licenses in order to get married.
But getting back to the photo, what stood out to me was not the photo. It was the commentary that seems to represent the sentiments of a large number of black women disillusioned from their experiences with dating black men. The question posed in the meme: “Would you date outside your race?” The response from the sharer: “Yes, the majority of the men in my culture ain’t ish.”
Those words gripped me like the jaws of a vice. I had to inquire. I reached out to the person that shared the meme and added commentary. I questioned.
“Do you really think the majority of black men ain’t “ish” or are you saying this out of frustration? I’m really interested in hearing your answer if you don’t mind. I would like to know what leads you to this conclusion.”
Her response: “It’s not out of frustration but from experience and seeing what other black women had to go through dealing with black men—and even myself, what I had to go through dealing with them. I love my black men; don’t get me wrong. I just think generally a lot of them focus on the wrong things without going into too much detail here. I think you get my drift”
My response: “I understand. What concerns me is that our personal experiences only reflect a very small group of the opposite sex. I have had some very painful personal experiences with women that I have dated. I have been cheated on, on more than one occasion, lied to, taken advantage of, etc. Even if I could say that the majority of my former girlfriends or ladies that I have dated cheated or were users, I could never say that this is true of most black women. I can only say that this is true of most women whom I chose to be in relationships with.The question that I would have to ask myself would be ‘does my experience reflect women in general or do my experiences more accurately reflect the women whom I chose to be in relationships with?’ I can honestly say that some of my choices were not the best choices. The results I experienced in some of those relationships were consistent with the persons whom I chose to be in relationships with. I learned some hard lessons in the process. There are plenty of good women just as there are plenty of women who may not be the best choice for a relationship for many different reasons. The same is true of men. I meet a lot of very impressive young black men. I also meet jokers whom I wouldn’t let walk my dog if I had one. I meet great women as well. I think many of our problems in relationships result from which group we choose to date from.”
Our exchange was amicable. It’s always good when men and women are able to engage in meaningful dialogue on sensitive subject matter without posturing as if we’re engaging an opponent. It’s fertile soil for us to plant seeds in.
It’s only the beginning of a healthy, needed dialogue. We haven’t scratched the surface. This introduction is only the backstory to the discussion. In part 2, we will dig deeper into the reasons why a person would say they prefer to date someone from a different race.
BMWK, are you open to dating outside your race?
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