All Articles Tagged "black marriage"
In an article on Time.com, divorced couples offer lessons about what it takes to sustain a solid marriage.Relationships are tough; they require a whole lot more than love to make them succeed.
The divorced couples in the article suggest learning how to manage conflict, which is important because a leading researcher showed that with 85 percent accuracy, he could predict within 15 minutes which couples would divorce, simply by watching how they handled conflicts.
Read more at YourTango.com.
From Single Black Male
I can’t be mad at Black women when they say that Black men don’t have a clue what they want. It’s hard even getting a straight answer out of a Black man on what he really wants out of a woman. It’s different for each of us. But at a very basic level, what’s on our wishlist? Well, is there even a such thing as a wishlist or do Black men find themselves in a position where we choose a type of relationship over the characteristics desired in that relationship? Let me run that back, are we more likely to want to be married or in a relationship than we are to have our wishlists satisfied? That may explain why some women are left scratching their heads when they see a man settle down into a relationship. Almost to say, “You said you wanted ‘A’ but you ended up with ‘B’? What gives?!”
On Dec 3rd, I’ll be joining an all-male panel in Washington, DC to discuss what’s on a Black Man’s Wishlist. When it comes to relationships, no man’s wishlist will be the same as another man’s. Some men put “loyalty” at the top of their list, while other men put “good-sex” at the top of theirs. Regardless of how extravagant or simple the wishlist, there are some basics that should be on every man’s.
Read more at SingleBlackMale.org.
Sometime during the national conversation on Single Black Women, someone hypothesized that the Black church keeps women single. I thought that was pretty ridiculous considering 95% of the black married women I know, I know from church. In fact, it seems to me that religion is much more important in judging a person’s chances for marriage than race. The link between being a Christian and getting married in a timely fashion was something I noticed years ago.
After high school, I went to a Bible college for a year. At that college, there was a huge emphasis placed on marriage and seemed to be the primary (or a close secondary) purpose for being there. It wasn’t just the women either who seemed intent on “marrying a pastor” it was the men too who would approach women announcing “God said you’re my wife.” Sound creepy? That’s because it is.
I remember telling a staff member that I refused to cook in the dorm’s community kitchen…or anywhere else for that matter. Shocked, she said “Well what are you going to do when you get a husband?” She asked it so urgently as though she had said, “Well what are you going to eat for dinner?” I was eighteen and not even thinking about marriage tat hat time, but I guess she automatically assumed I was angling for a husband because so many people around me were foaming at the mouth to get married. In fact, some members of the administration had begun calling it “ring by Spring” mocking the high percentage of students who came in the Fall semester and ended up engaged or married by the end of Spring semester.
When I left Bible college after one year, I attended a state university. There, the game was totally different. In fact, nobody talked about marriage, ever. It was refreshing to date guys without one dropping the “God told me you are (or are not) my wife” bomb on an otherwise great night. It was nice to have conversations with women without one declaring she hoped to marry her crush, despite having never been on a single date with him. I had recently broken up with my Bible college boyfriend and he was the last person for a while to ever bring up marriage as something on his short-term goal list.
I could have easily chalked the difference up to the fact that Bible college was a place for aspiring ministers and, like politicians, pastors are expected to have wives. But it wasn’t just those pursuing a pulpit that were getting married left and right.
While I was at the state university, Facebook was opened to people who were in college and those who weren’t. As a result, I found out that many of my parochial high school classmates had skipped higher education and went straight for “Wife Life” and some even had children. I was stunned. All of that before their 21st birthday? It was then that I noticed the stark contrast between my college friends and my friends from my hometown.
Most of my friends from home were friends from church and if they weren’t married then they weren’t shy about wanting to get married. Most of these friends (guys and girls) were either virgins or celibate. In contrast, my friends from college were about their business and romance was mostly relegated to the sidelines. Both the men and the women seemed engrossed in the risky game of who can have the most sex with the most people while suffering the least consequences in the form of pregnancy, STD’s and/or emotional pain.
After graduation, I went back home and, still addicted to Facebook, I noticed that more than a few college acquaintences I’d known from Campus Crusade for Christ walked off the graduation stage and down the wedding aisle. Here I was trying to find my first post-college job and these girls who had graduated the year before me were posting pics of themselves flanked by an adoring husband cradling a newborn baby. A friend and I used to joke that we should have spent more time at Campus Crusade for Christ meetings and less time at the library.
As time went on, I noticed that most of my church friends who were in serious, committed relationships rarely dated for more than two years without popping the question. Many of my non-church friends who were in serious relationships were living together and dating for four and five years without getting engaged. Of course, there are Christian couples who live together and/or date forever without getting married and non-Christian couples who don’t live together and/or got married in a timely fashion. I just noticed that there was a marked difference in terms of proportion among the people I know. Like, Stanford professor Ralph Richards Banks asked in his famous book, “Is Marriage For White People?”, I wonder is marriage for Christians?
The evidence to support my theory that Christians are more likely to get married and get married young is strictly anecdotal, but the statistics back up my experience. While the majority of Americans walk the aisle eventually, according to Christianity Today, a whopping 84% of Christians marry and the average age is 25.
By “Christians” they mean “couples who regularly practice any combination of serious religious behaviors and attitudes — attend church nearly every week, read their Bibles and spiritual materials regularly; pray privately and together; generally take their faith seriously, living not as perfect disciples, but serious disciples.”
These Christians, they also found, enjoy significantly lower divorce rates than mere church members, the general public and unbelievers.
While churches don’t explicitly command “get married”, it seems the culture promotes it among attendees. And while many factors play into getting married including economic status, educational accomplishments and even race it seems the common denominator among the largest group of married folk under 30 is the fact that they’re Christian.
I’m not suggesting that anyone jump in the Jesus Jetta because they think their future husband is riding in it. Jesus is not passing out marriage licenses. I’m just thinking, considering the fact that most Christians are African-Americans, then maybe we’re not so “doomed to be single” after all.
What do you think? Do you think religion plays a big part in whether or not people get married? Have you noticed Christians people you know getting married young or at a higher rate?
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Before I begin this post, I need to dispel a few rumors. For one, there is no black women marriage crisis. That is a myth, mostly broadcast by news outlets looking to gain easy views, reads, and rehashed blog topics. However, black women do marry later – 75% will marry by age 35. Secondly, there is no interracial marriage crisis. According to two doctorates from Howard and Morehouse University, “Six percent of married black men who are high school dropouts have a white wife and 92% have black wives. Among black men with college degrees, 10% have a white wife and 85% have black wives.” When eight of 10 black men will marry a black women, it doesn’t seem like much of an epidemic. Lastly, no list is all-inclusive.
Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way. Click through for the seven reasons why black men marry later.
Forget The Divorce Rate, I’m Still #TeamMarriage Because Other’s Failures Don’t Determine My Success
The amount of people who cite divorce rates as a reason not to get married is baffling to me.
Since when is someone else failing at something a good reason for me not to do it?
When I went to college, I remember sitting in freshman orientation and the speaker opening up with that famous: “look to your left, look to your right,” one of you will not graduate” thing. I looked to my left, I looked to my right and yet didn’t get the urge to bolt to the nearest exit.
There were some people who didn’t graduate with me. I wasn’t surprised though because before going to college, I’d heard the statistics: “Just 56 percent of students who embark on a bachelor’s degree program finish within six years” or “46 percent of Americans complete college once they start.”
Of course the numbers for black students were beyond dismal. While the graduation rate for white students starting at four-year institutions is 62.6 percent, it was a mere 40.5 percent for black students. I looked up the facts for my school in particular and found that they graduated just over half (57%) of the black students within six years.
Still, I never thought these statistics meant that I wouldn’t receive my college degree. And no one would have suggested that I shouldn’t enroll just because Keisha called it quits before senior year.
Why then before I got married did people feel the need to remind me about the divorce rate? I have the same thoughts toward marriage that I did when I was sitting in the freshman assembly that day. Some marriages won’t make it, but that reality doesn’t mean mine won’t make it and I’m genuinely surprised that more people don’t think that way.
First of all, if you actually read about the infamous “divorce rate” you realize it’s based on the marriage and divorce rates per 1,000 people in the U.S. This includes people who are not of the marrying age. Also, the CDC will tell you that the collection of detailed data was suspended beginning in January 1996 and the most recent comprehensive analyses of detailed marriage and divorce data was published in 1990. Since then, they’ve had to rely on the states data and all states don’t even report. Still, with the information they do have, the divorce rate is sad but it’s not half and certainly isn’t more than half as some people say.
In addition, sure your aunt and uncle may have divorced after 26 years and four kids, but Kim Kardashian called it quits in 72 days and that was long considering Dennis Rodman was married to Carmen Electra for nine days and Britney Spears was married to her Mousketeer friend for a whopping 55 hours. Forget celebrities, how many Average Joe marriages begin and end during a drunken weekend in Las Vegas? Remember, all of these “marriages” count towards the divorce/annulment rate.
Furthermore, if we allow for different variables such as age, net worth, college education, religion and compatibility, your chances for a successful marriage can increase (or decrease) exponentially according to our beloved statistics.
So, if the divorce rate is that unreliable, then why do people pretend they’re basing their whole philosophy regarding marriage on it and thus deciding that marriage is a dying institution that isn’t worth considering?
I wish these people would tell the truth: they don’t want to get married because they don’t want to get married. They don’t “believe in” marriage because they want to have sex with whoever, whenever without being bothered with commitment. They want to pretend that a child born out of wedlock is more successful than one born within a marriage. They want to insist that all husbands cheat (every single one!) and wives aren’t much better. They want to turn their nose up at monogamy and somehow conclude that casual sex is safer and more ideal than having sex within the confines of a marriage bed. They want to pretend that everyone who gets married does so for the right reasons and therefore a divorce is impossible to predict before walking down the aisle.
They want to “prove” all of these erroneous ideas by citing the divorce rate.
I’m not buying it. I still believe that marriage is better than the alternative and even if Jim and Jane don’t make it, I’m still going to try because other’s failures have no bearings on my success.
No one is saying marriage is easy or even ideal for every person. But after a while, you have to wonder if the people spouting off the nonsensical “marriage is a bad idea, just look at the divorce rate” argument haven’t taken a moment to look around at the state of the black community (and America in general) and realized that discouraging marriage is an even worse idea.
Even the statistics will tell us that.
Follow Alissa Henry on Twitter @AlissaInPink
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If statistics on black marriage and divorce rates are getting you down, tune out the mainstream and check out the blog blackandmarriedwithkids.com. According to My Fox Atlanta, this is one of the most successful relationship and parenting blogs you can find, and it’s run by African American couple Lamar and Ronnie Tyler.
The Atlanta-based love birds and blogging gurus have been married for seven years and have four children. Their story started just like any other–they dated, got married and had some babies. But the difference was their determination to stick with the marriage and rally against the stereotypes. They wanted to embody black love and show it to the world, and they’ve made a business out of doing so.
“So many times we would see somebody come in and announce, hey I’m getting married and people would suck their teeth, roll their eyes, say don’t make the same mistakes I made, things like that. And we said it should be like a joyous occasion,” Lamar Tyler said to My Fox Atlanta.
Recently, the Tylers have taken their message to the big screen with a series of documentaries called “Still Standing.” The series features real married couples who have gone through trials, but ultimately held onto their love and their marriage. They’ve even included some celebrities such as married music artists Kindred the Family Soul and Arrested Development’s Speech Thomas. So far, the films have resonated with the audience and sold out in theaters across the nation.
“The trials are going to come your way,” Ronnie Tyler said. “The troubles are going to come your way but if you work together and if you’re intentional about making your marriage work, then you’ll be still standing as well 10, 20 years from now.”
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We’re back with a fresh new episode of Ask A Black Man! Ladies this is our season finale, so we held out for the good stuff in the end. More eye candy, more honesty–we all thought this was our favorite episode to date due to the true honesty that was provided by our panelists. We’llw arn you now: it may not be easy to digest.
In this episode, a new panel of men discuss the topic of marriage. MN commenter favorite Devale is joining us for another episode, while LA (Laurence), George Twopointoh, Zarette and Brannue Life represent for the first time on stage. Our lovely host Kela Walker holds it down for the ladies, per the usual.
Watch this episode now, and come back at 6pm EST today to watch the extended version of The Sex Episode. We couldn’t fit all the questions, answers and commentary from the men into this episode, but you can watch the whole thing at 6pm tonight. You won’t wanna miss the rest of this discussion!
MORE ASK A BLACK MAN:
- Series Sneak Peek [Trailer]
- Episode 1: The Life of A Single Man
- Episode 1: The Life of A Single Man [Extended Cut]
- Episode 2: The Dating Episode
- Episode 2: The Dating Episode [Extended Cut]
- Episode 3: The SEX Episode
- Episode 3: The SEX Episode [Extended Cut]
- Episode 4: The Marriage Episode
- Episode 4: The Marriage Episode [Extended Cut]
MEET THE “ASK A BLACK MAN” CAST
Several of you mentioned you wanted to see some married men on the panel, and Devale is very much a happily married man. A proud father and husband, we think Devale brings a unique perspective to the cast. Devale appears on “Episode 2:The Dating Episode” and he will also be appearing on “Episode 4: The Marriage Episode,” later this month.
Relationship Status: Married
In 3 words, how would your friends describe you? Funny, Driven, Outspoken
What are the main characteristics/qualities that you look for in a woman? Beauty, Nurturing, Sense of Humor
What are your favorite hobbies? Bowling, Movies
What are your top 3 favorite books to read? The Alchemist, Rich Dad Poor Dad, From Good to Great
Who is your favorite artist?
Favorite movie of all time? Bad Boyz
When you think of black women, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind? Angry
What’s your favorite quote and why? “Hard work beats talent when talent doesnt work hard.” Hard work is the ultimate equalizer in a world where everything is unfair, the privileged get all the help, and we all look down on cheaters.
When I was a kid, there was a pretty clear image in my mind of finding a special lady, falling in love, having a Jodeci-style wedding and carrying her across the threshold. Many years and a few special ladies later, that grand vision of happy matrimony began to degrade. In fact, most times there seems to be very little to gain by getting married at all.
This is no doubt due to the rise in divorce statistics and the media’s fascination with displaying the absolute worse case outcomes of a failed marriage: vindictive spouses fighting tooth and nail to divvy up children, wealth and anything else the couple built together. Unfortunately the news about a famous couple renewing their vows or celebrating another year together doesn’t get as much traction as a vicious divorce trial. C’est la vie.
But there is a silver lining in the gloomy divorce cloud: those couples that take on marriage in spite of all the obvious reasons not to. Sometimes you have to look a little harder to find them, which is ultimately a good thing if you hope to go down that aisle eventually. It begins to prepare you for the work you’ll also need to do to make marriage work.
Thankfully we have the following couples as inspiration. These seven luminary marriages remind us that 50% of marriages do make it and maybe give us something to aspire to.
Will and Jada
When rumors of their break up spread through the airwaves I didn’t believe it for a second. Will Smith is probably the world’s most likable rapper-turned-actor and Jada has MILF written all over her. Their kids are seem to be so well-adjusted, despite being born into Hollywood elite and budding child-star careers. There’s no doubt that’s because Poppa Will and Momma Jada are so down to earth and not about the BS. No one but haters wants to see these two split. An all lovers want a marriage as close to this as possible.
(Afro) — The study debunks highly popularized theories about the lack of marital options for Black women. For example, the research cites a story from ABC that states only 54 percent of Black men would be considered “adequate to marry” taking into account the Black men who lack a college education, are in jail and are unemployed. In his study, Toldson points out that such reports don’t take into account overlapping of this data. This “phenomena” of the single and successful black woman as well as the crumbling of the Black family has been covered by many news outlets. MSNBC, NPR, the Washington Post and countless bloggers have had stories with headlines such as “Marriage Alludes High-Achieving Black Women,” “Black Women: Successful and Still Unmarried” or “Marriage Is for White People.”