Yikes! The drama that could unfold with this post but I think the drama is really just in my mind and the foolishness I see on social media. Recently I saw a post that had a picture of Omari Hardwick and his wife. Omari is black and his wife is white and the commentator was saying that you absolutely cannot be pro-black and date and marry interracially. So, I would say maybe there was a point in my life I believed this. But I was also young, and really learning about African and African American history and I was, and still am truly appalled at the things black people across the world have had to deal with at the hands of white people. I have marched in the streets, I have We Can’t Breathe hoodies, I have the continent of Africa tattooed on my arm, and I mean, I am, after all, a black woman. I live and breathe black culture, and black excellence AND I date across the board, any race and for most of my dating life, I have been committed to dating black men. Now, I happen to be dating men that are white. I am involved with one in particular who I love deeply and that has nothing to do with my pro-blackness BUT everything to do with my pro-MEness.
I love him because I love him. I also appreciate the way he treats me. I was saying to someone recently that I am dating based on how I am treated and not based on skin color. The men that I loosely dated prior absolutely did NOT meet my needs regarding love, honor, respect, ease, and mindfulness. They were not energetic matches and I am not compromising on that. I started aligning within myself what was most appealing for me and a large part of that was facing the things I had to let go of that was keeping me in a vicious cycle. A large part of what I had to let go of was thinking of myself as someone who was too broken to be loved. I was stuck in this thought process of being someone who was here to love but not necessarily receive love. I thought that this big love, this encompassing love where it felt heavenly was reserved for people who were lucky. I hadn’t thought of myself as lucky in love because thus far, all of the love I had was really wack and conditional and limiting. That had nothing to do with the men AND everything to do with me and my thoughts about myself. That needed to change.
I have always dabbled in online dating because anyone who really and truly knows me knows that I do not really hang out like that and well, how can I meet anyone if I just stay home? So, I signed up for OkCupid and they have a matching algorithm that is set up based on how you answered questions and they show you your top matches. Every single person in my top 20 were white men. At first, I thought there had to be an error but when I started looking at the questions that we matched on, it was clear that there was no mistake. Many people of African descent are deeply religious, and this includes people in the United States and the Caribbean, and I, although growing up pretty religious, am not religious at all. I am actually not a believer in the traditional view of Jesus AND Christianity is not something that I identify with at all. Ironically, I strayed away from Christianity BECAUSE of how it oppresses people of color and specifically how it affects black people across the globe. I digress, white men don’t really fuck with religion like that either. The other heavy match factors were yoga, hiking and my eclectic and diverse taste in music, movies, and books. I like DMX as much as I like Dave Matthews Band, I like hiking in the woods as much as I like sitting on a stoop in the summer, I like Malcolm X as much as I like Memento and a host of other shit that black people may consider white people shit. I hadn’t ever considered myself suburban or any of those things as white people shit BECAUSE I grew up with a wide group of friends and was exposed to a variety of cultures and experiences. I can hang anywhere, with any group of people and be completely chill BUT I was learning that my algorithm matched older men, and who happen to be mostly white. I decided to finally give dating white men a shot.
Around this time last year, I parted with my job and I also parted with a way of thinking and therefore a way of being. I decided that I wanted to invite ease, freedom and to be courted. I was going to allow myself to be wined and dined and catered to because I deserved that. Interestingly, and very welcomed were men who wanted to honor me, as much as I honored myself, and they were generous, open and bold in their approach. I liked that shit and it opened up a new channel for myself to step into and explore my needs, wants and desires in the process. How did this work into my pro-blackness? Well, I think there is no escaping my blackness, and no desire on my part to escape. The white men that I dated were all culturally aware, competent and open to talking about race, interracial dating BUT also they were interested in ME! I am very clearly a black woman, with natural hair, natural curves and my thought process is now and will always be for the advancement and equity for black and brown boys and girls everywhere. I am not shy about that, and I am proud of it and I do not back down from talking about it, ever. I like dialogues with folks about what matters to them and I like to share my thoughts on what matters to me, and if we can find ways to work together and support each other, I am super excited about that.
Know the most appealing thing I have learned about dating white men? The ones that I have dated are keenly aware of their privilege AND they want to do something with it. I am not saying they are all Tim Wise or Jon Stewart BUT they are men who have been successful in their careers and they have dated interracially for a long time and they are aware that this world is not fair and there is a huge lack of equity. I often ask them if they are interested in bridging the gap. We talk, we converse and we find ways to talk about the possibilities. What is possible? Using their positions of power to create access to those who do not have the access. It is far deeper than donating money or watching documentaries or feeling bad. White guilt solves and does nothing for ANYONE, BUT using power and privilege to make a way IS helpful and can create opportunities for breaking generational cycles of poverty. THAT will always be something that excites me and makes me want to further explore those conversations. Whomever I date will become aware of my passion projects and even if we do not stay romantic, at least they are enrolled to participate in something that could transform a generation of youth. Pro-blackness and interracial dating, ladies, and gents.
I am going to date who treats me best. I am dating based on how I think about myself and who I am attracting to myself. I want to date people who are mindful, caring, considerate, generous and open to conversations about anything and everything. Naturally, dating out of your race will pose some dilemmas and situations that can be awkward and uncomfortable. So what? I am in love with this life I have and I am not worried about losing my pro-blackness to interracial dating. Both are possible because I am a multilayered human being. I date who I want to and I will enjoy my experiences. That is that.