Black Woman seeks love
Dating (or not) as a single Black female addicted to retail
A few years ago there was an article released in Psychology today that talked about Black women as the least desirable women on the planet. A few years ago little Black girls like me with curious minds were inundated with statistics about our lack of desirability regarding interracial relationships, our numerous baby daddy’s, and overall inability to hold onto a man. I don’t know why this is the first thing I’m publishing on Medium. I guess it’s because I’m trying really hard to be the person I needed when I was growing up.
As I approach both my 23 birthday and receiving my first bachelors degree, I have so much going for me and I still feel lonely. While I joke a lot about slowly making my way towards 40 year old virgin status (bruh I haven’t even been on a date) sometimes I seriously get terrified of the possibility that I’ll end up alone. I wish that being alone and being lonely felt like two completely different things, they don’t. I wish that I didn’t feel like being alone was the worst thing I could be. Impressing upon young people, young women specifically , that they are incomplete without someone else is dangerous. It makes you settle. It causes you to be complacent and you allow yourself to be hurt because you think being alone is the worst thing you can be. It’s not. Being mistreated is.
When I got accepted to Howard University in 2014 my parents beamed with pride that I had been accepted to their alma mater. An older woman in the church said oh you’re gonna find a husband there for sure. The assumption that I was going to college to get married felt like a violation of my intellect and everything I was trying to accomplish with furthering my education. This is not a put down of people who found each other in college, my parents did, but for me men were initially the last thing I needed to be worried about, but by my second year at the University of Oklahoma (how’d you end up there instead of Howard? Another story entirely) I felt the loss and I felt left out. I felt like I was doing something wrong. Being single and living for yourself is not wrong. Learning who you are without a significant other is not wrong. I wish someone had been brave enough to tell me that.
I wish that more Black women had told me about dating while being a Black woman. Back in high school I didn’t know what it meant to be a fetish, but I do now. At my first high school dance multiple groups of white boys would surround me at a time. I didn’t question it. I thought we were all just dancing and having a good time until they started making grabs for my body. At one point one slapped my ass so hard he caused sequins & beads to fall from my dress. At the time I believed it to be an isolated incident, but the more time I spent on the Irish South side of Chicago at a private all girls high school the more I learned about segregation regarding dating as a Black woman. I can’t tell you the amount of times my friends told me about the young Black men who said, “I don’t date Black girls.” Again I believed it to be an isolated incident. What I think is most fascinating about this is that other people think that People of Color play the race card too frequently, but who would want to be treated like this? My freshman year of college I befriended a lot of International students. I was taking courses in Chinese and I learned a lot about other cultures and people when I made friends with them. (I was also in the cultural hub of Muncie, Indiana my year at Ball State again another story) I was in math class with a group of Middle Eastern students and I thought they were cool so even after I dropped the math class I still kept in touch with a few of them. One of them messaged me on Facebook late one night asking if I would be willing to kiss him. I questioned his motivation, did he like me, did he think I liked him, did he want to date me, why did he want to kiss me? His reasoning was because he had never kissed a Black girl. He promised me that he was clean and didn’t have mono or anything, I told him no and he responded with, “hahaha i was joking with you lol. i will just kiss my black girl next door and send you the pic tonight, but i never wanted to kiss you in frist place just wanted to see your reaction. hahaha you are soo sensitive.” (Literally direct quote. I went back to the messages to make sure I didn’t imagine this.) Moment after moment I had charged it to the game. Marked them all as isolated incidents, but there has to be a moment where I’m honest with myself and that moment is now. Dating as a black woman is a drastically different beast than anyone I was prepared for. From the men you crush on saying that they can’t see themselves with black women to men wanting to kiss you simply because you’re Black. Trying to date as a Black woman involves questions like does he like Black women, does he fetishize me, am I the first Black woman he’s dated, am I his flavor of the month? Also, like literally I’m over the fascination with my ass. Like I love my ass too, but just this weekend I was out with my best friend trying to dance and have a good time. Four men grabbed my ass and another asked if he could pee in my ass and I need that to stop. You can love my booty, but you also need to respect my booty (and my body as a whole).
I want to say to those young girls who feel like they’re missin out, “You good boo.” I want to say to the young Black girls, you’re worth more than what they’re giving you if what they’re giving you is what is mentioned above. And I want to say to myself future, past, and present, When and if we find someone we need to be able to articulate who we are as a person. I want to be sure of myself so I don’t loose myself, because I’ve seen so many people who lost themselves and lost their happiness and peace. I’ve fought to become myself; I hope I’ll fight just as hard to keep her.