Why I Wish We Would Stop Advising Black Women To Date Outside The Race
If I had to make a list of the stuff that I don’t like, advising single Black women to date outside of the race would be at the very top. I just want to find whoever started that “70 percent of Black women are single” conversation and put them on a rocket ship to outer space with whoever first volunteered that “the solution is to date outside of your race” remark.
I don’t even remember when it started, but apparently, of all of the solutions presented for this so-called “issue”, interracial dating somehow emerged as the groundbreaking cure-all. But I guess as long as you convince people there’s a sickness, anything can be marketed as the antidote.
The latest person to capitalize on this mythical “issue” by spewing this illogical advice is a blogger named Christelyn Karazin. She already has a book you may have heard of (I hadn’t!) called “Swirling: How to Date, Mate and Relate Mixing Race, Culture, and Creed”. Recently, a production company picked up feature film rights to the movie. No other information on the movie has been released yet, but the author says the book is “a dating wake-up call for African American women”.
A wake-up call because not dating interracially implies that you’re sleeping? What kind of silliness is that? This is the stuff I do not like.
I don’t like the fact that these women (and men) are out here encouraging Black women to date outside of their race like it’s a fad, a trend or even a novel idea. I don’t like it because then it makes it seem like women (like me) who happened to be married to someone of a different race did so because that’s the popular advice of today.
This “should we” or “shouldn’t we” interracial dating debate goes on ad nauseam in the black blogosphere with people speaking out passionately on both sides. Then in the middle you have people like me who honestly do not care and wish that everyone would just stop talking about it – even those that are supposedly in support of it! Especially those that are supposedly in support of it.
Why? Because people who think they’re giving well-meaning advice by saying “Black women should date outside of their race” are really just perpetuating the fallacy that Black women (who want to) don’t date outside of their race already. In fact, there are plenty of Black women who have dated or married a non-Black person and it isn’t because they’ve applied some sort of warped logic and panic-stricken thinking to their love lives. It’s not because they’re out of options or answered a “wake up call” either. These women just happened to fall in love with someone who isn’t Black because they don’t regard race in dating or marriage and they certainly don’t view their marriage as some sort of “movement”.
It’s amazing how much Black people have begun making interracial marriage a huge issue again. Since this “Single Black Women” conversation started, women who happened to have married outside of the race begin being used by both sides of the useless argument. Some will prop her up as an example of how to “win” in relationships while the others will use her as an example of what’s wrong with the state of “Black Love”. Some Black women want her to give advice on how to meet White men and others want her to prove she doesn’t have something against Black men. People assume that she is in it for the “pretty babies” and others say that she doesn’t want her children to have black features. People think she either found the “secret” or is “self-hating”.
It’s exhausting and insane. Personally, I am sick to death of people expecting me to either encourage them to “leave these Black men alone” or insinuating that my marriage is some sort of gimmick and a direct response to trendy advice. Maybe there are some Black women who have taken a look at their lackluster love lives and decided that Black men were the problem, so they made a conscious decision to date or marry someone of another race. I am not one of those women. In fact, I think that any woman who believes that a husband being White (or Black) will insure her against infidelity or divorce or general unhappiness is just delusional. I believe that because it’s not about race at all. We definitely shouldn’t be basing matters of the heart on something as arbitrary, dubious, and fickle as pop culture relationship advice. Just marry who you love and love who you marry — and assume that others are doing the same.
Follow Alissa on Twitter @AlissaInPink
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