Relationships

Lessons to learn from black male swirlers

Written by Penelope Farthing

Black men have been dating interracially in greater numbers and for far longer than black women have. Historical data shows that once it was legal to date interracially (in America), they were the first to jump ship. Their motto is the same as Skittles – taste the rainbow, and I support their decision to do so 100%. Being that they are the “expert” swirlers of the race, I think that black women could learn a lot from black men who hop the fence for a lighter, brighter bae, such as:

You owe no one an explanation

When famous black women are linked romantically with their nonblack partner, it is almost a prerequisite for them to say that their love for black men hasn’t dwindled and their nonblack beau is not a slight against the black male collective. Case in point, Lonnie Love and Eve, who both felt the need to defend their white partners. When black men step out with their nonblack girlfriends, baby-mamas, and wives, they give a little “love is love” and keep it pushing. Alternately they may say something like “white women are just better because they have real hair and are more feminine”, insulting the image of black women on his way out. Since black men don’t need to explain wifing up Becky, Prisha and Maria, you don’t need to explain getting wifed up by Chad, Vipul, or Jose, either.

Airing out the dirty laundry is not the way to solve private affairs

Earlier this year I wrote about two black women in interracial relationships: one was seeking funding to escape her racist, horrible in-laws, and the other was seeking to crowdfund their wedding. Not too long ago Twitter was ablaze with a story of a black woman who was falling out with her white Republican husband because she was getting “blacker” during the current administration. (I didn’t write about it because it sounded like the machinations of a troll). No relationship is perfect, and that extends to BW/WM ones, even if the pairing is the least likely to divorce. However, social media flaps about BM/non-BW pairings seem to be fewer in numbers.

Social media has become equal parts therapist chair, couples counselor, and divorce lawyer, so the rise in complaints about relationships online is to be expected. But if one went off social media alone it would paint the picture that black women and their nonblack partners are mired in more dysfunction than all the other configurations. It would do black women well, regardless of their partner’s race, to solve issues outside the scrutinizing eye of social media. Black men have mastered the art of dragging their black baby-mamas all through Facebook, but remain mum on any problems he may have with their nonblack ones, so take a page out of their book and seek other actually useful avenues to vent.

Nonblackness does not guarantee quality

Now more than ever, interracial dating is a hot topic in black women’s spaces. Black women have proclaimed they will chuck up the deuces to Tyrone and seek to get a Chad, Brad, or Thad. However, not because a man isn’t black automatically means they are worth being with. Bums come in all flavors and to think your relationship woes will end because your new guy has 98% less melanin but does the same stupid things that a black guy did, is doing yourself a disservice. Vetting partners appropriately and not giving them a pass because of their race is something I wish more black women did.

Blackness apparently is a spectrum

This is a bit tongue in cheek, but bear with me. If women like Amber Rose, Kim Kardashian and Cardi B get to be black by association of the men they are with, or the typical black woman features they paid their surgeons to give them, even though they are decidedly not black, then why can’t that same meter be applied to the average nonblack guy? Blackness is graded on a curve depending on what the agenda is, so if someone thinks your beau isn’t black, just do what black men do and claim him to be black based on remote ancestry, ability to dance, or seasoning level of the chicken at the barbecue.

Look out for yourself first

It does not behoove black women to be race loyal, especially when the loyalty is not reciprocated on a collective level. Proclaiming nothing but a black man will do for you looks desperate and implies that all a man requires for your love is to: step 1) be black. Please point me to the black men who say they are nothing but a black woman brothers, especially in the numbers that black women do. Leave links in the comments, as I would genuinely love to see it.

Black men find their happiness if whatever package it comes in, and generally don’t have regrets (until the divorce, but that’s a topic for another day). If the love of his life happens to be across racial lines, so too could yours. If the best man for the job happens to be of the Asian persuasion, go for it; as long as he is right for you, all the external opinions simply don’t matter.

Interracial dating isn’t rocket science. However, because of multiple factors that impact black women navigating the dating waters in general, black women may just have a harder time doing it. If that’s the case, take a page from the brothers’ playbook and see how that turns out.

Follow Christelyn on Instagram and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube channel. And if you want to be a little more about this online dating thing, InterracialDatingCentral is the official dating site for this blog.

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