Enough with these Stupid Articles on Unmarried Black Women

by Eva on August 9, 2011 · 1 comment

in Eva,lifestyle

Seriously I do not get the point of all these stupid articles breaking down why Black women are less likely to get married than their White counterparts, most recently Ralph Richard Banks’ piece in the Wall Street Journal.  Unless these articles start offering a husband to go along with it, they need to stop.  Reading the percentages of how unlikely I am to get married, the poor “marriage market” (I hate mixing economics with love) and how Black men are living it up with every color under the rainbow but Black does nothing for my day or my life.

They aren’t telling me anything new, although they are contradicting what I’m seeing in my life.  I actually have seen three new Black on Black relationships start and flourish over this year.  I expect to go to three Black on Black weddings within the next two years.  In the article, it stats that 70% of Black women are unmarried, I thought this number was really high, so I started looking on the Census’s website to find it.  I found that about 70% of women between the ages of 25 to 29 are single, but for all Black women (over the age of 15) 45.5% of Black women are unmarried*.  This statistic shows that almost half of us aren’t married yet, but that that means about half of us are married or have been married.  While we can argue that 45% is still a large percentage, it’s nowhere as large as 70%.

Not getting married is not the worst thing in that could happen to someone.  Yes I know most of us want to get married but let’s think about the reasons why we aren’t married now.  We have chosen not to settle for someone that doesn’t share our values, doesn’t make us happy or some other very important and valid reason.  There is nothing wrong with that.  Would you rather be single and live happily ever after or get married (because you felt you had to) and be miserable with a man?  Come on now, we’re better than that.

But back to the topic at hand – these articles and books?  How many times must we read about “the crisis?”  And that fact that ole boy who wrote the WSJ article is a Black men?  Come on dude, you’re better than that.  He talks about men having too many choices and instead of calling them out and telling them to just make a decision and lock it down (I’m assuming he’s juggling Black women, although I guess he could be juggling the rainbow) you say Black women just have to deal with that.  Stop right now.  Let’s not act like it doesn’t take two Black people to form a Black marriage.

Yes, he does raise valid points about why our numbers are skewed and why available Black men might not be desirable to Black women.  But instead of tackling the issues of why Black men are disproportionally incarcerated or not obtaining education at the same rate as Black women, we instead are told to date men of other races.  I understand why Black women are loyal to Black men, who else is?  And if  a Black women chooses to only date Black men, knowing full well the odds are against her, that’s her business.  She knows what risks she is taking and she doesn’t need to be bombarded with messages that she’s living mission impossible (even though I don’t believe it’s that drastic and dire).   Besides with a divorce rate at approximately 50% it looks like we’re dodging an emotional and financial bullet because most of us end up at the same place – not married.


*source: U.S. Census Bureau, America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2010: Table A1 Blacks alone or in combination with one of more other races

About the author

Eva Haldane, editor of Sassy Women Online and doctoral candidate at Columbia University. You can find her personal blog at evahaldane.com.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Serriasays.com 06.12.12 at 10:19 am

 ”We have chosen not to settle for someone that doesn’t share our values, doesn’t make us happy or some other very important and valid reason. ” I don’t this is true. Our standards are no higher than anyone else, to be honest I think they are lower. Shockingly low with the only true rule that is non negotiable is the man’s color.
We aren’t getting married because our mothers did not teach us how to compete for men. Unlike white girls, our mothers didn’t tell us to stay thin, they told us to put more meat on our bones -and honestly what man race of man likes fat women? The didn’t tell us to act like ladies, they didn’t show us how to put on makeup and show the best parts of our body without looking like a slut, to stand out in a crowd. They didn’t position us to compete because they neve had to. Historically brothers didn’t have a choice, it was death or marry a sister. Now they have a choice and you have to be the best.

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