Changing negative perceptions about Black women

William T. Robinson, Jr.

I am not claiming to be an expert or consultant on building better relationships among young adults. However, I can advise young African American women on how to better their chances of obtaining young Black men as potential mates or husbands. My advice is from a male perspective and is contrived from conversations and experiences described by a multitude of Black young men. You don’t have to agree with me, but my objective is to offer some understanding why there appears to be a move by many Black men away from Black women toward women of other cultures, primarily White women. There are a multitude of factors contributing to this gravitation away from Black women to other women of other races.

Many blame the media for being the main culprit. They often portray our Black sisters in a negative light. Too often Black women are represented as highly saucy, loud talking and overly aggressive. They have been depicted as head-shaking, finger pointing, obnoxious women eager to put Black men down or let many of them know they are financial above them. While this stereotype may be entertaining and even funny to many, the truth of the matter is that a large number of Black women have bought into this stereotype—and it has become detrimental to their pursuit of meaningful relationships with well-meaning young Black men. Another factor may be quite the contrary wherein the women appear extremely needy, constantly in pursuit of what they can personally or financially get from a man, offering no more than physical contact in the relationship.

Yet another visual is that of the Black woman as a promiscuous, gyrating, ‘hoochie mamma’ sexually exhibiting her scanty clad body, literally offering herself as a sex toy. This may be appealing to the libidos of men seeking no strings attached sexual relief or a meaningless rendezvous, but let’s   call it what it is: ‘a booty call.’ Honestly, this is what a great number of men seek, but the women they find as an easy mark are not candidates for perspective girlfriends or future wives.

While there may be exceptions to the rule, many men are looking for virtuous, spiritual, intelligent, monogamous women who can be good mothers and soulmates. Unfortunately, many Black women knowingly or unconsciously have succumbed to negative stereotypes, thinking that all a man wants is a powerhouse in the bedroom. However shallow it may sound, it may work for a while. But such qualities doesn’t promote longevity in a relationship.

There you have it. Many Black men are gravitating to other women of other races because of their easy-going demeanor and support in building the man in his self-esteem. Many would agree that these women appear submissive and fawning toward the wishes of Black men pursuing them. Even if this is a superficial attempt to snag men of color, it appears to be working. Securing a no drama relationship appears to be a must for many Black men. They’d rather avoid Black women they perceive as sensational.

My advice to young Black women is to stop letting others define you and live up to the beautiful qualities endowed to you by your Creator. You are intelligent, spiritual and loving individuals worthy of the love of a good, productive, loving man.  Parents and families should work together to instill self-love and self-respect in their daughters. They should be taught to love and respect their bodies—not be taught to need a man to validate them as a woman. They should be taught to seek men who respect them and honor their morals and values.

The pursuit or desire of many women for a ‘bad boy’ or thug only adds to the shallow and degrading image attributed to many women, especially Black women. But this diminishes their chances of legitimate and meaningful relationships with the possibility of marriage. Love can grow and blossom with less exciting but respectful men if given time.

Blacks in the media and movie industry should stop aiding White America by exploiting our women in pursuit of making a profit. Black men of substance should not seek women of other cultures with the idea that Black women are inferior or beneath them, while other women are emotionally and morally superior. The depiction of Black women in reality shows has not been favorable in dismissing damaging stereotypes. When we learn our true history and stop letting others define or validate who we are (especially as it pertains to our relationships), then we can mend the relationship rift made by our oppressors perpetuating these myths.

A special thanks should be given to the proud, strong Black women who have not bought into the self-defacing images contributing to the deterioration of Black women’s image. They continue to present themselves as intelligent, spiritual, respectful, conscious and strong women offering love and support to deserving brothers.

They continue to hold up the flagpole for other Black women. Eventually many of our wayward and confused brothers will be inspired by them and find their way back to seeing Black women as potential mates.

‘Characteristics of a Mother’

A mother’s strength is forged in steel and impenetrable.

A mother is an agape love, knowing no bounds.

Mother is synonymous with love.

A mother is the silent unseen voice of unyielding prayers for her family and children.

A mother is the unheralded foot soldier in communities working tirelessly for little if any recognition.

A mother is the source of support and encouragement for her children and friends when life is flagrantly trying to beat them down.

A mother is that needed smile to let you know you have a supporter and are loved when it counts the most.

A mother is that hug that many times helps to get us through the day and upcoming weeks.

A mother is that foundation that keeps her family intact and the orchestrator of most family gatherings.

A mother can be that hand of discipline, keeping her children walking the straight and narrow.

A mother is her children’s favorite cook—her children claim her food is to die for.

A mother is, hands down, the greatest spoiler of her children—unconsciously finding joy in pleasing them.

A mother is that ferocious lion you don’t want to cross when it comes to hurting her children.

A mother is the balance God blessed the earth with to keep us from being swallowed up in the madness of life.

A mother is the ultimate gift from God to show us how much he loves.

by William T. Robinson, Jr.

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