Beyond Black & White » Thriving http://www.beyondblackwhite.com Chronicles, Musings and Debates about Interracial & Intercultural Relationships Sat, 18 Apr 2015 20:54:28 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 New Study Suggests Professional Black Women “Marry Down” More Often Than Anyone http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/new-study-suggests-professional-black-women-marry-down-more-often-than-anyone/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/new-study-suggests-professional-black-women-marry-down-more-often-than-anyone/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 17:18:16 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=36873 It’s well known that most black women are taught by their parents to get through school, don’t get pregnant, and don’t worry about getting a man while you’re getting your degree. So we do it and it’s done. But when it’s time to start looking for a mate that is comparable with our achievements, the […]

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It’s well known that most black women are taught by their parents to get through school, don’t get pregnant, and don’t worry about getting a man while you’re getting your degree. So we do it and it’s done. But when it’s time to start looking for a mate that is comparable with our achievements, the black men who make the cut are few and far between. Enter all the “soul food relationship gurus” who come in to tell black women to lower their expectations and give up-and-coming-rapper-living-in-his-mamas-basement Jerome a chance, or the unambitious 30-year-old who makes $10 an hour with two illegitimate kids by two different women to support. We are taught to bend and bend to our own detriment, so often marriage seems of no real benefit to us if it means we have grown child-men to support.

The struggle is real, and backed by science. A recent study by the Brookings Institute suggests that when black women marry, they marry someone with less education 58% of the time. Only 11% of black women marry men with more education. Not to mention that the 68% of black men of equal education aren’t marrying black women. “There is a growing “marriage gap” in the United States. Marriage rates among the non-college educated population have fallen sharply in the last few decades, and sharpest of all in the black population,” says the report.

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(I find it interesting that none of the major online publications are publishing these results…)

Basically, college educated black women are not assortively mating very well. Assortive mating is defined by the process in which people marry mates of equal or more education and financial mobility.

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Black women aren’t generally taught assortive mating, because doing so makes you open to the black community criticisms that you’re too “bourgie” or you’re gold digging. Hmmm….you’re gold digging to expect to marry someone who worked as hard as you did to get what you got? Whateva!!

The benefits of assortive mating:

One implication of assortative mating is greater household income inequality, since education is a strong — and strengthening — predictor of earnings. Households with two college graduates multiply that earnings power by two and are doing much better than households with less-educated couples. Jeremy Greenwood of the University of Pennsylvania and colleagues estimate that assortative mating pushes up the Gini coefficient (a measure of income inequality) from 0.34 to 0.43. Work by Brookings’ Gary Burtless suggests that between 10 percent and 16 percent of income inequality in the United States is caused by the “growing correlation of earned incomes received by husbands and wives.”

“By definition, the black female college graduates who do not marry are not assortatively mating, since they are not mating — defined as marrying — at all. This helps to explain why white women with college degrees are more than twice as likely as their black counterparts (29% v 13%) to be married to someone of equal or greater educational status,” the study says.

This study, and it’s implications, are the basis of why interracial dating and relationships require a unique focus when it comes to black women.

The interaction between gender, race, education, and marriage helps to explain the replication of social status. Even if black women rise up the ladder, in part because of their efforts to acquire more education, one of the key mechanisms for maintaining that higher status for the next generation — assortative mating — is less available to them. This is yet another reminder that even if, as Gideon Rose writes in Foreign Affairs, there has been progress towards a “post-racist” society, we are still a long way short of a “post-racial” one.

It’s the reason I wrote Swirling: How to Date, Mate and Relate, Mixing Race, Culture and Creed, and why my critics hate me for it. If you wish to build wealth, say GOOD RIDDANCE to the struggle, have less financial stress and give your kids the best chance at life, you absolutely have to widen your dating pool, and you should not give two craps about whatever guilt trips the GAT-DL (Guardians of All Things Dark and Lovely) try to impose upon you. Telling black women to “marry down” has probably been the worst advice we’ve gotten for the past half century.

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Is He Lying To You? Former CIA Agent Teaches You How to “Get the Truth” http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/is-he-lying-to-you-former-cia-agent-teaches-you-how-to-get-the-truth/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/is-he-lying-to-you-former-cia-agent-teaches-you-how-to-get-the-truth/#comments Wed, 15 Apr 2015 12:28:30 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=36862 We talk a lot about vetting potential mates, so that we make the best choices for our partners. But let’s face it..there’s a lot of men out there that run a good game and we can’t always know when someone is being truthful. As experienced as I am, I STILL get deceived every now and […]

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We talk a lot about vetting potential mates, so that we make the best choices for our partners. But let’s face it..there’s a lot of men out there that run a good game and we can’t always know when someone is being truthful. As experienced as I am, I STILL get deceived every now and again, which is why I was really intrigued about a book I ran across called Get the Truth. It is written by two former CIA officers who claim the advice within can teach you “how to persuade anyone to tell all.”

The authors of the book provides 10 Tips for Getting to the Truth. Take notes!

1) Understand that the reason the individual wants to conceal the truth is the fear of negative consequences if the truth is revealed. He likely feels that there is just so much he can tell you and still keep himself out of harm’s way–he can go only so far without stepping over the cliff. Think of your goal as diminishing that fear so you can determine what’s on the other side of the cliff.

2) Adopt a sincere, understanding tone and demeanor. There’s a saying to the effect that the guilty person seeks only to be understood, for to be understood give the appearance of being forgiven. Far from confrontational or belligerent, the demeanor you project should be engaged, calm, empathetic, and most of all, sincere. Slowing your rate of speech and lowering your voice a bit will aid you tremendously in evincing sincerity.

3) Help the person rationalize his actions. This will nudge him to step in the direction of being less focused on long-term consequences, and more focused on the reasons you’re giving him to see telling the truth as a viable option. Rationalizing his actions or behavior by reminding him, for example, that everyone is human, and that everyone makes mistakes, will help weaken his resolve to withhold the truth.

4) Minimize the seriousness of the situation. The more you’re able to downplay the consequential nature of the matter about which the individual is withholding the truth, the more comfortable he will be to share the information you’re seeking. When he hears you say, “It’s important that we not blow this out of proportion,” he’ll be struck by how reasonable you are, and you’ll likely be perceived as much less of an adversary.

5) Socialize the situation so that person doesn’t feel so alone. If I have the impression that you and others might think of me as a pariah if I admit that I did a bad thing, I’m going to be awfully reluctant to admit it. On the other hand, if you tell me this is the sort of thing you see all the time being done by the men and women in all walks of life, I’m going to feel much less alienated. I’ll be more willing to recount the experience I now realize I share with plenty of other people.

6) Assure the individual that there is plenty of blame to go around. Chances are a person who wants to conceal the truth will not have adopted a “buck stops here” mentality. It’s always easier for someone to fess u if he sees that the finger isn’t being pointed soley at him. Liberally shower the blame wherever you can convincingly do so–society, the system, management, bad apples are all potential accomplices in causing the bad thing to happen.

7) Don’t allow the person to voice a lie or a denial. If the person is in lying or denial mode, you don’t want his lips moving–the more opportunity he’s given to articulate the lie, the more psychologically entrenched he’ll become, and the less likely he will be to reverse himself and tell you the truth. If the person starts to express a lie or denial, immediately disarm him by simply holding up your hand, saying his name, and using a control phrase like, “Hang on just a minute.” Then go right back to giving hime all the reasons why telling the truth is a viable option.

8) Take advantage of the power of repetition. Human nature is such that the more frequently we hear something, the emote likely we are to believe it, or to at least be open to the possibility. Remember that if the person is in denial mode, you don’t want his lips moving, so you’re the one doing the talking. Freely rearticulate the rationalization, minimization, socialization, and projection of blame that will help the person, ever if only temporarily, to see things your way.

9) The more implicit you are in the language you use, the easier it will likely be for the person to buy in to what you’re saying. If you tell the person you want to work with him to help get the matter “resolved,” let his mind take that where it will. To you, “resolved” might mean a conviction. To him, it might mean something he can live with. Similarly, avoid any language that might remind the person of negative consequences: He “took” rather “stole” the language that might remind the person of negative consequences: He “took” rather than “stole” the jewelry: he “gained unfair advantage” rather than “cheated” on the test; he “inappropriately touched” rather than “assaulted” the woman.

10) Never sit in judgment. Remember that your goal from the outset was to get the truth, not to assume the roles of judge and jury. That goal will be considerably more difficult to accomplish if the person feels that you’re judging him, so make sure you avoid chastising or reprimanding him in any way. You want him to see you as a confidant, not as an arbiter of his fate.

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Breaking Point? What’s Up with All These Stories of Black Women Killing Their Children?! http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/breaking-point-whats-up-with-all-these-stories-of-black-women-killing-their-children/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/breaking-point-whats-up-with-all-these-stories-of-black-women-killing-their-children/#comments Tue, 31 Mar 2015 16:54:06 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=36696 I woke up to yet another story of a black woman who brutally killed her child in a restaurant bathroom. She’s 35, most likely a single mother. From the New York Daily News: A “soulless” mother shockingly killed her 20-month-old son in the bathroom of a Midtown burger joint Monday — and prevented restaurant workers […]

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I woke up to yet another story of a black woman who brutally killed her child in a restaurant bathroom. She’s 35, most likely a single mother.

From the New York Daily News:

A “soulless” mother shockingly killed her 20-month-old son in the bathroom of a Midtown burger joint Monday — and prevented restaurant workers from rescuing the doomed boy, police and witnesses said.

Then she “blamed the devil,” a police source said.

The 35-year-old Lower East Side mom, identified as Latisha Fisher, took little Gavriel Ortiz-Fisher inside a rest room at 5 Boro Burger on Sixth Ave. at 36th St. around 2:25 p.m., cops said.

As the tragedy started to unfold, a woman walked into the bathroom and saw the mother holding her hand on the boy’s mouth, but Fisher told her: “I put my hand over his mouth to put him to sleep,” according to a police source.

At some point, the mother locked herself in the bathroom. Customers and employees eventually became worried when the line to the toilets grew long.

When workers forced their way inside, the child was unconscious and foaming at the mouth, according to the sources.

And then, wasn’t there a story about a woman who beheaded her three-month-old son? And then another story of a mom who killed her kids and stuffed them in a freezer.

Assumptions can be made all around, but I venture to imagine that we “strong black single mothers” are not as weigh-bearing as we think we are. There is no more “black community,” no more “village” of more stable blacks who could assist and help raise less fortunate kids. These women are raising children virtually alone, and obviously can’t handle it. And the brutality of the crimes suggests a deep mental illness on the part of the mothers that has gone virtually unaddressed.

What are you thoughts on this? Is this a cosmic fluke or an alarming reality?

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Black Beauty: Celebrating Black Women’s Luscious Lips http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/black-beauty-celebrating-black-womens-luscious-lips/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/black-beauty-celebrating-black-womens-luscious-lips/#comments Tue, 31 Mar 2015 10:07:15 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=36684 By Zara Let’s face it, our lips are so juicy that they go out and buy them – but without wanting to give us the credit where it is due! We often hear about the “great lips” of certain white actresses and public personalities (who shall remain nameless) but we NEVER hear about the numerous black women […]

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By Zara

Let’s face it, our lips are so juicy that they go out and buy them – but without wanting to give us the credit where it is due!

We often hear about the “great lips” of certain white actresses and public personalities (who shall remain nameless) but we NEVER hear about the numerous black women in entertainment who exemplify what having these features is truly all about in the first place as Afro women.

Double standard much? I’d say so.

Hence, this post is dedicated to celebrating just a few of the black women worldwide who have some of the best lips in the business.

1. DAWN ROBINSON 

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Member of the original and trend-setting En Vogue, with powerhouse vocals and a sultry persona to match. It just made it so much more enjoyable to listen to her beautiful voice slip through her pouty lips.

I literally not only listen to her sing, but watch her sing for days. She and her group members showed women everywhere what it meant to be sexy and classy. Viva En Vogue!

2. MALINDA WILLIAMS

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Best known for her work in the Soul Food series, this beauty is one of those women who does not need to hide behind a lot of hair in order to be stunning. Her lips alone command attention within the rest of her button-cute face.

It was always a joy to behold her black beauty as the movement of mouth complemented the depth of artistic expression as an actress.

3. SADE

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With Nigerian roots, it is little wonder that this iconic songstress had one of the most sensual lips that went extremely well with the smooth tone of her jazzy soul music.

Every time she sang the word “smooth” in her international hit “Smooth Operator,” I think a part of my little girl’s heart melted in admiration. A woman so sexy, and without trying.

4. JILL MARIE JONES

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Although I personally found her character “Toni” on the much-adored and highly successful series “Girlfriends” a bit frustrating, I just could never bring myself to stop watching her!

Her silly tantrums were brought to life by the pout of her lips whenever she sulked. And that never failed to render her so loveable – despite her character’s bratty behaviour!

5. KERRY WASHINGTON

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Whether she is smiling, crying (as Olivia Pope) or just standing around breathing, the shape and fullness of her lips are so captivating and beautiful to behold.

I am sure that when non-black women everywhere go in for plastic surgery on their lips, they ask the surgeon to give them lips like Kerry’s. But these lips cannot be bought – sorry!

6. NAOMI CAMPBELL

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Although she became one of the world’s first UBERMODELS (to date) for her gorgeous body and overall grace, one cannot deny that her lips are just the cherry on top of a perfect specimen of  woman.

When I see Naomi, I see a strong body, amazing bone structure, and lovely Afro features punctuated by those lips of hers. It also makes it that much better that she moves them to speak out against racism in the fashion industry! Go Naomi!

Honestly, this list could go on FOREVER!

Just throw in almost every black woman in the world and you’ll get all sorts of variations of beautiful lips.

We were born with sensual mouths – and no matter how slender-lipped or full-lipped we are as black women, our lips seem to always give off an aura of sensuality.

The better to not just look stunning with, but to express our truth with. So yay to us ladies!!!

PS: I just have to note that almost every lady on this list has dated inter-racially.

Even though certain aspects of society may want to downplay our beauty as black women, there are still many out there who see beyond the nonsense – and adore us for who we are.

In any case, what matters most is us celebrating ourselves as black women in self-love.
So go look in the mirror and give yourself a loving smirk of approval.

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Again, as this list is mega short, I invite you to throw out names of the black women (or men) who you feel have some of the most gorgeous lips you have ever seen.

Do share!

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BioZara Chiron is a multicultural, multilingual African woman in Europe who creatively – and candidly, explores the collective ‘Afro’ Experience in writing, image and video via her website.

Connect with her on FacebookTwitterTumblr or Instagram.

#blackbeauty #blackwomen #afrobeauty #lusciouslips #fulllips

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Calling All Expats! http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/calling-expats/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/calling-expats/#comments Fri, 13 Mar 2015 13:49:43 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=36481 We have so many BW here who have worked, taught or studied abroad. On travel posts, a wealth of information often comes out in the comments section. So, let’s dish on our experiences abroad for readers who may be watching from the sidelines, gaining the courage for a big jump. Hair? Taxes? Belongings? Visas? Cultural […]

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We have so many BW here who have worked, taught or studied abroad. On travel posts, a wealth of information often comes out in the comments section. So, let’s dish on our experiences abroad for readers who may be watching from the sidelines, gaining the courage for a big jump. Hair? Taxes? Belongings? Visas? Cultural faux paus? Making friends? Let’s give the down and dirty. Just what has your experience been making the move to live and/or work outside of America?

I can start with mine – I spent a summer working in finance in Holland back in college. I was working for a large company so all of the technical details were taken care of. As far as hair, the first time I washed my hair and proceeded to plug in and turn my American hooded dryer on, there were weird noises like it was turning into a spaceship, followed by blue flashes of light and finally smoke. I was natural the rest of the summer, having finally painfully understood the difference between an adapter versus a converter. I had acrylic nails at the time and it did take awhile to find a nail salon. I was surprised to see that many were black owned and formed a lovely relationship with an African woman over the summer.

As far as connecting, my co-workers were all older with their own families and from all over the world (really just doing a year or so in Holland) and I never hooked up with an expat community; I met a group of Americans at the company who left a week or so after I arrived.

If I could do things over, one thing I do differently is being more adventurous and traveling to other countries. While I did a TON of local sightseeing every weekend, I worked so much I really couldn’t travel outside of Holland. I should have made the time.

Okay, I’ve dished! What experiences have YOU had abroad?

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Carrie Rebounds After False Start with the ‘Emotional Warrior’ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/carrie-rebounds-after-false-start-with-the-emotional-warrior/ http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/carrie-rebounds-after-false-start-with-the-emotional-warrior/#comments Wed, 11 Mar 2015 07:43:13 +0000 http://www.beyondblackwhite.com/?p=36474 Editor’s Note: This post was created shortly after Carrie’s abrupt ending with you-know-who.  “Ricochet Rebound” By Carrie Thompson YouTube lurkers (who don’t know me from a can of paint) are commenting on how ugly, sad and lonely I am over a guy who called me for two weeks? Seriously. Albeit I did not expect a […]

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Editor’s Note: This post was created shortly after Carrie’s abrupt ending with you-know-who. 
“Ricochet Rebound”
By
Carrie Thompson
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YouTube lurkers (who don’t know me from a can of paint) are commenting on how ugly, sad and lonely I am over a guy who called me for two weeks? Seriously. Albeit I did not expect a blingy diamond ring, I am disappointed that I enabled myself to be disappointed.
When it comes to the internet, I expect to be pelted with stones from black women, but with every venomous comment I felt compelled to slide on a tight article of clothing and zip up my thigh high suede boots. Time to find a little friendly affection tonight.
While I may not be the media’s spitting image of awe inspiring grandeur, the men in Los Angeles don’t seem to know it, and this city is the entertainment capital of the world. Men who have never considered brown skin remotely attractive question their own hubris when eyeing me, and I specialize in turning such men out. Like my latest specimen:
*Seamus is a 39-year-old entertainment liaison for The Bel Air hotel, in town from Edinburgh, Scotland. We met on the elevator ride up to Planet Daily’s in Hollywood. His sandalwood Marc Jacobs scent lingered as we sashayed into the rooftop atrium overlooking the tourist hub ‘The Grove.’ My girls and I parked it at a wrap-around booth with a majestic view and ordered a round of stiff spirits. We scanned the backdrop then made a plan to work the room. Coincidentally, we didn’t realize the Scotts had been checking us out.
Jacqueline, a great friend of mine and a television finance specialist, is a little shy when it comes to the boys but had no idea my pimp hand is a smooth and stiff closed fist. I prance the floor and beeline right up to Seamus’ friend *Kendrix and proceed to give him the go-ahead to hit on my friend, omitting my interest completely.
By doing this, which Jacki and I discussed prior, showed I’m one of the guys while being a beautiful and confident woman unafraid of rejection. Kendrix and Jacki veer off to their corner of the dimly lit skybar while Seamus and I intertwined fingers and legs at the bar.
We discuss America’s declining dollar and how it’s bound to be removed from the covetous world reserve currency as the prominence of the Chinese economy soars with an insurmountable GDP. This brown fox can spin a confab any direction, regardless of demographic or locale. The art of conversation, I have mastered, and he kept up.
Charmed of my worldly knowledge, he continues feeding my lush, which had to come to a stop since the bar closes at 2:00 a.m., but I didn’t want our moment to escape us. I pushed him into a photo booth, which he inserted $5 and our mouths did gymnastics as a pulsating light yanked our dilated eyes back to sobriety. The Scots follow us to Jacki’s car, our designated driver awaited, rather irritated that we made a few new friends, and she had not.
We were politely kissed goodnight and sped off into the crowded streets of Hollywood. Seamus has called me everyday since and has been persistently trying further wine and dine me. Jacki says to not be so available, and show him you make the rules, but European men are not like Americans, he knows what he wants and he’s going for it full force.
Our next date is a movie premiere at the Grumman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. This little lass has her head on straight and is not making any fast moves with Seamus. He’s handsome, super kind, and his accent?! Don’t get me revved up…
Rebounding not from heartbreak but a bullet which pierced my ego, that I allowed to ricochet from chest into the world wide web. Bearing all vulnerability to the masses. I am not with Seamus to throw it in my former interest’s face or my online opposition.
To be craved is a priceless sentiment, J’adore the craving of a first time swirler who likes to laugh with and kiss me. Taking it slow and vetting my prey will certainly aid my future but I can never rely on much more than facts, prior experience, and intuition.
There are little to no black women where Seamus lived in Scotland, but I do not consider myself the dreaded ‘exotic vacation vagina,’ but do see him more as an educational apparatus: allow things unfurl without expectation.
I do have one reservation about him: every time we go out he spends SO much money on me. He even asks how much he should tip? Even three of my girlfriend’s appetizers, antipasto, entrées and drinks, parking validations. Maybe he’s just a good guy who doesn’t put money on a pedestal like I do. Or maybe I’m slightly intimidated that I couldn’t do the same if the tables were reversed and don’t want to want him to think I’m interested in what he has. Maybe I should shut up and enjoy his attention. Can I stop being cerebral for ten seconds!
I would love to hear the community’s thoughts on my newest serial dating escapade.
*names were changed to protect the innocent.

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