Buckle up, ladies. This one is a doozy. Be sure to read the entire letter.
I just discovered your video (about a girl whose boyfriend of 4 years said he won’t marry her) on YouTube as I searched for relationship advice on interracial dating. I really liked the advice you gave her and I will be grateful if you can help me with some advice also. Please forgive me if this letter is long but I have a lot of issues I need to get off my chest. I am a 27 year old African girl who has been living in New York for a little over three years. I work in the healthcare industry.
Before 2015, I had only had one boyfriend, my college sweetheart who is also black/ African. We were engaged and planning our wedding 2 years ago when I found out that he had had a child with another woman when I moved to the US. My mom, aunties and so many other people asked me to accept him because maybe if I had not traveled, he would not have been tempted to cheat. Men can marry many wives in my country so cheating and physical abuse is not as huge a deal there as it is here in the US. I tried to make it work with him but I felt so hurt anytime I thought about the fact that he had had a child and not told me so I ended the engagement. I could not date for about two years after that because I was bitter and heartbroken.
At the end of last year, my friend who wanted me to move on signed me up for a dating website where I met a white American man (37) who lives in Boston. It was a novel experience for me as I had never dated someone outside my race. We exchanged a lot of pictures and chatted a lot. On his profile , he had written that he lives with his elderly grandmother and wants an African or Caribbean girl because we believe in family.I know this would put off someone that is American but I did not think anything of it as many people I know back home live with and take care of their grandparents. When we talked he would talk about how he was ready to settle down and really wanted an African wife. He asked me to be his girlfriend and we planned for him to fly and spend time with me at my apartment in New York and that I would go visit him in Boston too. He told me that he had deactivated his account on the site (which I confirmed because I could not find his profile anymore). He kept on telling me when we talked that he really likes African girls because of our physique, our love for family, being religious and we can cook well. He was very respectful to me in our communication and caring also.
After chatting like this for 3 weeks, he visited me in New York. His visit was a success, we had a lot of fun and everything seemed really cozy. It was really romantic, we talked, were physically intimate, I made us nice meals and we went sightseeing and also to a restaurant. He returned to Boston after three days. During this visit, a few things happened that caused me to worry. One was once when he made fun of my pronunciation of a certain word because I have a heavy accent. He also said (in jest) that the African way of eating with one’s hands was unhygienic. The other was that he would talk about different African women he had dated in the past. That worried me because before him I had only dated one man as I said and the idea of him dating so many women made it seem to me like the women were disposable. As he was talking, it turned out that he had dated a woman from my country. I asked him why it ended and he said it ended after a fight where she was verbally abusive and he slapped her because she was hysterical and that he didn’t slap her very hard just enough to calm her down. He also told me that he had had a few issues with another African ex when explicit videos he had taken of them leaked online and she reported him to the police. These issues worried me a lot but he said they happened when he was younger and I was convinced that he had changed. I am also very religious and since he was a Christian, I believed that his life would be guided by these values. Moreover, I felt that if he was such a bad person, he would have kept these negative things from his past secret and not talked about them. I spoke to my mom about it and she advised me to be patient because everyone has his faults and time will tell if this was something I couldn’t deal with.
When he returned to Boston, everything was the way it was for a few weeks and we were planning for me to visit him in Boston. Then he started saying he was busy a lot and began reaching out to me less and less (although he was so sweet to me still). He sent me a lovely text message on Valentine’s day but no gift or even a card (although I mailed him a card). This continued for a couple of weeks until I received a message from someone new on the dating website I had used. I went to my account to shut it down so that I would not receive any messages only to discover that my boyfriend had reactivated his account and so possibly was chatting with other women! I did not tell him anything about it but when we next chatted, I asked him if something was wrong because I felt he was distant from me and he said that it was true and that he wasn’t emotionally attracted to me anymore and ended the relationship. Not surprisingly I was devastated but I have now moved on and want to learn my lessons so that I do not repeat it with another person. I have become interested in interracial dating and would like to try it again but I feel that as someone who has no knowledge on it, I need to learn more about men of other races. Do you think he was turned off by me when he saw me in person- maybe by my physical appearance etc or maybe the fact that I cannot speak English with a good accent?.Should I not have had sex with him this early although we were in a committed relationship? He is the 2nd man I have been with in that way. What I forgot to add is that I sent him a joke about wanting a Jaguar for Valentine’s day and his ‘being busy’ started a few days after this. Do you think that this made him see me as a gold digger? Back home in my country, due to economic hardship, most men provide financially for women they date but I do not know if in the US it is offensive to make such a joke relating to financial provision. I am really worried now because I do not want to turn 30 without being married or having kids. Marriage and kids is a big thing in my culture, all my classmates are married and I feel so ashamed that I am still single and have failed in my relationships.My mother keeps on pressuring me to settle down and I have started being anxious about it. Please give me advice on how I can keep a man because it seems I have been unable to do so with the 2 men I dated.
Here’s my take.