By William Bixby
Let me preface some of the imminently unpopular statements that will be made in this article by saying that this article is not an indictment of all Black women. Black women are some of the most wonderful, resourceful human beings in this country, and some of the most physically beautiful people on the planet. Black women are creative, intelligent, and colorful people. They are compassionate and giving. They are nurturing and self-sufficient. However, despite all these great qualities, Black men have stopped dating women of the same ethnicity and started pursuing women of different backgrounds. Men of color have begun to date outside their race for several reasons, but the most prominent causes of this current trend are the challenges that come with dating Black women. The same character traits that make Black women strong and capable in professional settings, the ones that allow them to sustain a high standard of living by themselves, also make them overbearing and confrontational in intimate relationships. The individuality and strength that defines them as mothers and earners hinders their willingness to compromise and acquiesce to needs of their partners. In the context of a romantic relationship, Black women can be extremely difficult to date.
The challenging nature of relationships with Black women can be better understood through a deeper perspicacity into the Black experience. Black people’s personalities are shaped by the unique social situations that only they experience. They face some of the most oppressive and hyperbolic misrepresentations of character in the nation. Black people are stereotyped as violent, ambitionless criminals who dress like thugs and aggressively prey on the affluent majority or lazy bums who apathetically feed from the majority through the welfare system. It is an unfair assessment that negatively affects the perception of an entire people, and a large portion of the American public believes it to be true. Black men either perpetuate this terrible stereotype by simply looking and dressing relevantly to their culture which is vastly different from the general population (baggy clothes and urban wear) or become a muted version of themselves by dressing and behaving to assimilate into cultural expectations. Most races are taught to seek personal individualism, but Black people are taught to blend in with their peers or be subjected to persecution. Black people, and more specifically, Black women, face more obstacles than the average person. They suffer the institutionalized prejudices that come along with being a double minority. Black women are persecuted for being Black and undervalued for being women. They are expected to be irrational, angry, and over-sexed by the general public, and they combat those stereotypes daily. That forces them to see situations differently and to react more adversely to these incidences than the average person. Their subjection to these gross mischaracterizations of their personality hardens a lot of Black women, and their behavior sometimes mirrors the misconceptions that other races have about them further widening the gap between their reality and the experiences of their peers. They are single parents more often than most other ethnicities struggling with all the requisite problems of raising children alone. And, the statistics reflect this sentiment. Black women really are more independent than the women of most other races, because Black men are less likely to live in-home with their children. Black women are accustomed to doing things on their own mostly because they are solely accountable to their household. The people as a whole therefore are caught in a perpetual cycle. 64% of Black children were raised by only their mothers versus 34% for Hispanic children, and 25% for White children. They also have to be more vigilant in raising their children since children who are raised with an absentee father are at least twice as likely to use drugs, have a criminal record, be sexually assaulted, and have a litany of other behavioral, emotional, and health problems. Black women receive lower wages in the corporate workplace than any other ethnic group because they possess one of the most destructive stereotypes of any minorities, the stereotype of the angry woman. Because of these barriers, Black women have become some of the most resilient and resourceful people on the planet. They feed their families on less financial resources with fewer viable options for help. They learn to depend on themselves in crisis, because they have been failed by the American system. But, this forced self-reliance has also left a lot of Black women hardened and guarded emotionally. These women force their partners to work constantly to earn their trust. They approach their love life the same way that they approach their careers, with reticence towards those who offer apparent better solutions and with tempered expectations towards the future.
Unfortunately, romantic connections require a high level of transparency and vulnerability. Relationships are hard. They put mental and emotional strain on both partners regardless of their socioeconomic backgrounds, in spite of similar or dissimilar ethnic makeups, and despite different cultural upbringing. Women operate at a higher emotional level than men in general. They emote more readily and communicate more, so a man’s perceived lack of emotional investment can cause turmoil in the best relationships. Women of all races have disputes or disagreements with their partners, but Black women push conflict to new heights. No person can argue like a Black woman, and most of them would not relinquish the last word in an argument if their life depended on it. A Black woman is always right whether she be a mother, a wife, a sister, or just a friend. Some of these ladies actually take pride in proving their point above resolving relevant issues. That type of unyielding attitude is absolutely necessary in a hostile work environment or when running an unbalanced household, but it is devastating to a relationship. Black men are dating outside of their race because Black women are often too argumentative and independent.
This lack of fealty that Black men have show towards Black women should not take away from all the amazing things that Black women do on a daily basis. And, the purpose of these words were not to doom Black relationships or place blame for their demise solely on Black women. Black men have dropped the ball with cheating, eschewing the responsibilities of fatherhood, and general immaturity. But, this is not an indictment of Black men. It is a straight answer to a difficult question.
Hopefully, all the women that read this article can take these words with a grain of salt. The truth about people (not just women) is that they share different combinations of all the same desires, behaviors, and personality traits despite representing varying genders, backgrounds, cultures, and ethnicity. People look and behave differently, but they are inherently the same. However, some of the subtle differences in culture cause stereotypes to abound about certain groups. And, women incur a lot of them. According to the stereotypes, White women are adventurous in bed and have good credit, Hispanic women are family-oriented and passionate, Asian women are docile and subservient, and Black women are independent, difficult, and argumentative. Some ladies do embody these beliefs, but women come in completely different packages so these stereotypes do not fit all women. Because different races of women have different cultural practices, women have varying behaviors and personality traits. There are docile Black women with good credit, fiery Asian women who are independent, freaky Hispanic women who are difficult, and there are argumentative, passionate White women in the world. Race does not dictate personality and stereotypes are not absolute. However, there are some points that ring true with stereotypes because culture influences behavior.