Ask a black man
Hey Yall! What’s Gucci? What’s Louis?
I’m out here, in these Abidjan streets, promising I’m not looking for no wahala. I just want to ask a black man! That’s all.
So, here is the back story. A couple of weeks ago, as some of you may know, I stumbled upon this:
"Why do black football players love to marry white women?"
It was attached to an article whose survey responses indicated that black men thought black women are not date-able because they are un-classy, among other reasons.
An Essence Magazine (from which my article title is inspired) survey suggests the reasons behind black women being single also include: We don't seem as fun, we look like we can't be bothered, we are more inhibited sexually...
I wanted to find out more, and was glad not to be the only one! What would the men I knew have to say about the above? The survey developed into multiple questions that I asked the black men with your help!(Thanks so much for all the discussions and question suggestions). I also asked people outside the (black) race, to find out if the perception of an un-classy black woman was shared (or not) across race.
I feel the need to enter a disclaimer here: This survey is in no way exhaustive as it does not take into account a thousand and one other things that could affect the way a man answers these questions (Where a man grew up, what type of exemplary or non exemplary women did he grow up around, social background...).
I must say, a lot of you men had a LOT of sense when answering these questions :)! Some of you ladies might fall in love with the responses hehe ;) Okay, let's look at this survey!! It's long yall! But a fun time, if I do say so myself :).
1. What are your thoughts on the statement: “Black men prefer to date white women because black women are ‘ratchet’ (unclassy):
To which Roland, 26, Congolese, Black, Single, has dated outside the race
I think the statement is false and frankly disrespectful. It’s true that a lot of black women are portrayed as ill mannered on American television but that’s far from reality. Plus ratchetedness bears no color.
Anonymous, married to a black woman, has dates outside the race and 32 replied:
I think it is a perception, based on the fact that when some African ladies go to USA or Europe they change and forget where they come from and behave terribly (not all, but some).
What a black man cannot accept in Africa, why would he accept that abroad?
Yann, 33, French, White, Single, (grew up with 2 sisters and a single mother in Bondy, East suburbs of Paris ) replied :
That’s a statement based on skin color.It does not consider all the different personalities. So I would say that it can’t be true, or at least it should not be. However, as we know, we have bias created by society and I can’t remember a luxury ad featuring a black woman. So this idea of black women being un-classy may exist because we don’t show as many "classy" black women as we show classy white women.
Jean Baptiste, Single, 33, has dated outside the race, Congolese replied:
In the US people say "Once you go black, you never go back". There is something magical and outstanding about black love. I believe every woman is different though. So I don't think it's accurate to put all black women in a single statement.
Along the same lines, Anonymous, 28, Senegalese, Black, Single, replied:
I don’t know the numbers but I am curious to know how many black men prefer to date black women because white women are “too classy”. Either way I believe preference is most of the time guided by our environment, and with the large variety of media that surrounds us nowadays, what we call “class” is defined by the media around us. If “ratchet” black women were the new “class” in the media and in our environments, the question would have probably been: “What are your thoughts on the statement: “White men prefer to date black women because white women are ‘classy’ (unratchet)?
2. Could you share your thoughts on the term: ‘la Fatou fâchée’ otherwise known as ‘the angry black woman’?
Anonymous 28 replied:
If you call her “la belle Fatou” (the beautiful Fatou) from her very young age she will not be as angry! Having lived in France, where as a black man I could see all the stereotypes on the eyes of people looking at me, I almost started to believe I was meant to be an “Angry Mamadou”, which I never allowed. Once the same people got to know me, I became “a different black”. I believe people tend to find comfort in how people look at us in order to define our “role” in society. Maybe a lot of Angry Fatous just accepted to stay in the box they were put into, and therefore keep feeding the expression.
It’s not a term I am familiar with but I do know that a lot of black women are frustrated with their lives, their relationships, their position in society, this often rightfully so. The angry black woman and the angry black man are one in the same, a portion of the human race that has systematically been oppressed and frustrated by the system.
Calvin, 26, Zimbabwean, Single, replied:
In my opinion it is a myth, somebody just decided to stereotype all black women. My mom is NOT an angry black woman I’ve never seen her acting like one, and most of the black women I have met and interacted with do not possess that trait, though there are a few crazy ones that I have met that do have issues, it could probably be because of some bad upbringing or from constantly being hurt by men (black men) myself included.
3. Do you have an issue with a strong-willed and assertive woman, or is that a turnoff?
While most answers were along the line of Amadou's (Mauritanian, 25), in the sense that assertiveness is a turn on:
Having grown up with 2 older sisters that are very assertive, strong and ambitious women, I don’t only have zero issues with those characteristics, I actually admire them. So a strong-willed women can be a turn on :-)
Anonymous, married and 32 replied: No, I don’t. However, impoliteness, rudeness and sass should not be confused with being a strong-willed assertive woman.That is what most black and Arab ladies do. They take their ill mannered, ill tempered rudeness and sassy behavior as being strong-willed and I denounce that.
And Kessy, 33, Nigerian, in a Relationship, never dated out of the race replied:
Self – willed (strong willed) women are not my kind of women because I am a team player and if I want to be with a woman we have to make decisions together and like the saying goes no one is an Island so this is why most men don’t want to be with self - willed (strong willed) women.I t’s a big turn off for black people because we have cultures and beliefs and this is against what we stand for as black people in Africa.
4. Is the black woman unapproachable?
Not to generalize but if it is the strong-willed black woman then yes they do tend to be unapproachable and sometimes demean normal nice guys that try to talk to them then complain after that guys are scared of them. I do however understand that they have standards and types of guys they like so my advice to all black Alpha females is to approach the men they like, it solves the problem lol.
While Yann Replied:
As far as I can remember just as much as white women
5. Enumerate top three qualities you are looking for when choosing a partner (Let’s stay away from the physical traits) With this question, I was just trying to show, that irrespective of race, we can all have the traits they are looking for!
- Great personality
- Respects (not bossy)
- Strong - willed
Amadou: - Emotionally smart
- Positive energy - Great sense of humour
- Firstly: intelligence, she should be educated
- Second: culture, she has to embrace the way of life of our people
- Third: she has to be supportive financially if the husband is down financially. She has to be there to back him up physically she has to support by keeping the house and children clean and morally when the husband is down she has to provide useful advice.
6. Now, one physical trait, just for fun (Like the most attractive thing on a woman, irrespective of race)?
The Ass, a well-rounded perfect behind is one of the things I check for first on physical traits even before the facial looks.
I just have a thing for nice lips :-)
Smile, hips, hair
7. Your thoughts on wigs, extensions and natural hair
Anonymous, 32 replied:
Girls that want to be white and black at the same time! You need to know what you want! I can call wigs and extensions the work of the devil!
Jean Baptiste replied:
The black girl has to do what makes her happy. So changing from wigs, to extensions to natural is awesome.
Anonymous, 28 replied:
I like it as close to natural as possible.
I love the fact that black women can change their entire look by changing their hairstyle. I think it brings a bit of excitement in the relationship. I am a bit concerned that it can turn into a bit of an expensive activity. Nevertheless, if a woman looks good with her hair, I’m happy.
Everyone should love their natural hair. But I’m starting to lose mines, so wigs might be an option!
JUST IN PASSING, LET IT BE KNOWN THAT THIS MY BABY RIGHT THURRRRRR AND SOME UNIDENTIFIED PERSON WHEN HE HAD BEEN DRUGGED AND WAS IN HER HAIR FOR NO REASON!!
8. Has the question of Lobola (bride price) ever been in the thought process, when you considered dating (to eventually marry) a black woman (As in the cost of marrying a black woman would deter you from choosing her as a wife)?
An African woman whose bride price is not being paid to her parents is not legally married. So when you date a women and you love her there is no amount too high as a bride price.
No. this is tradition and it is one of those things that should not be changed and I would like to believe the point of a bride price originally was to show a token of appreciation and to build a relationship during the whole ceremony (process), even though some black parents are now using it for financial gain which is daylight witchcraft in my opinion.
I’ve never considered it, because I would not assume that marrying a black woman means paying bride price. But I’ve thought about marrying a girl with a different cultural background than mine. And I always thought that it is normal to have to go through the ‘wedding process’ of the bride culture. BUT love is not about money and it should not stop people from being married, so it should be about the gesture and not about the amount of money.
Generations wedding stills
9. What does the black woman represent to you?
Anonymous 28 replied:
The black woman has always been a mother, a sister, a friend, a colleague, a leader and hopefully the person I build my life with.
To this idea, Kessy added that the black woman is beautiful!
Anonymous 32 replied:
She represents a woman! Women no matter their color have to be respected! Why do you bring everything back to black women as if black women are the only ones in the world!
I believe that the black women need to be respected and looked up to. A black woman that fights for her rights and for “the black women status“ in society given all the barriers and challenges they have coming their way is simply remarkable.
Jean Baptiste replied:
Which black woman are we talking about? Michelle Obama? Beyonce? They all represent different values :) Sorry, not trying to be a smart - ass
10. Do you believe that a black man who criticizes black women realizes that his own mother is black (If such is the case of course)?
Black men that criticize black women clearly don’t realize that those black women they are calling out are also their mothers and sisters. The fact that they don’t realize it shows the ignorance and the lack of maturity they have.
Anonymous 28 replied:
To a man, their mother is NOT ANY WOMAN. We will always see Mom as THE EXCEPTION.
I hope he does!
I don’t think a man who criticizes a woman thinks about their mother. Men have a way of compartmentalizing. It’s weird to say but mothers are always the exception in a man's mind.
11. What are some things that the black woman always accuses them of but is not true (What are myths /stereotypes about them that are false)?
We’re accused of being players but most black men I know are faithful men trying their best to be good husband’s, boyfriends, brothers and sons.
Anonymous 28 replied:
Accusations I personally hear are not specific to black men but to men in general.
Now there was a bonus question, that I left as a bonus question because I am not sure about the statistics for the continent, but here goes:
A study showed that black women and Asian men are the least desirable demographic in online dating. Why do you think that is?
I found an answer particularly interesting, as Calvin replied:
On our continent it could be a matter of too much morals, most black women are groomed with the idea of self-value and self-worth which I do not think is a very attractive character on an online platform where some people are looking for quick hit-n-runs.
Anonymous 32 replied: I don’t do only dating. But I think that black ladies do not accept themselves. Why would other communities accept them?
That concludes the ask a black man survey! Thank you so much to all who participated and shared their insight and questions with me!
I am left with a few thoughts on the subject in the form of questions:
- Is there really a dating crisis for African women, living on the continent and abroad?
- Are my ladies over here interested in a black girls respond?
Until next time!