Question of the Week

Question of the Week: “Am I Wrong for Wanting My Daughter Not to Date Black Men?”

black man shrugging

Hi Chris, I have a question for moms of mixed daughters I was hoping you could share with bb&w. Do you in anyway steer your daughters toward a certain race of guys? What do you teach about black men? My daughter is only 5 months so this is a long way off. But even now, you can tell she’s going to be a blackistani’s dream. Face so gorgeous a stranger once chased me threw a mall so her husband could get a look. He saw my baby and told him, and he didn’t believe a baby could be as beautiful as she was describing, but conceded it was true. Light skin, curly hair. The women in my family who aren’t fat tend to be very curvacious. So she’s going to be a headturner, black guys are gonna love her. Thing is, I don’t want her with a black guy. I know there are good black men, but in my experience they’re few and far between, and even decent ones are hard to find. I don’t want her to spend her prime years looking for prince needles in a haystack of frogs. I feel like she’d do better doing like me and avoiding black men altogether. That sounds horrible and I feel horrible typing it. But what should I teach her as she grows? How do I steer her towards rainbeaus? Should I even try?


Dear Writer,

First off, I want to tell you that you aren’t alone. Many of us burned and hurt by the very men who were supposed to love and protect us may have reservations about black men dating our mixed-race offspring for the sole purpose of the glorfication of of light skin and the insidious cancer of shadism. You’re thinking it might be too hard to sort the “wheat from the chaff,” so you’d rather your daughter write them off completely. As a mom with three girls, I’d be lying if the thought didn’t also once cross my mind.

But that doesn’t make it right. I think about how I would feel if a store clerk locked up the cash drawer and followed me around a boutique solely because I was black, and in her mind ALL black women were theiving bitches. Nobody likes to be judged that way.

What you may fear is a specific type of black man, color-struck, seeking a light-skinned, curly-haired trophy that he might use, hurt, or abuse. Sure; there might always be a possibility that “Rae Rae”, progeny of “Leroy”, might come pimp walking to your doorstep, but that’s where all the long talks about vetting men, being able to spot the players, and discussions on how a gentleman should treat a lady will come in handy.  And guess what? You won’t have to worry because your little babster will take one look at Leroy’s raggedy son and shut the door on his nose.

Then again, she might meet “Jamal,” a hard-working (if not a bit nerdy) USC undergrad who sports the biggest afro in the history of the all the students EVER in his engineering school. And if “Jamal” is checking for my kid, and my kid is checking for “Jamal,” then she’ll get no guff from me, provided of course if his character is solid. And I’ll have comfort in knowing that my girls won’t feel the need to compete with 10 other black girls for “Jamal’s” affections because they’ll know they won’t have to cling to that “one good brutha” for dear life.

Never explicitly or actively encourage your daughter to leave black men off her dance card, because a rebellious child will eagerly do the exact opposite just to piss you off. Your only goal for your daughter should be that she choose character above color, and that in no way should she feel obligated to “give a brutha a shot” just because.  That means that “the list” should be conspicuously absent of physical qualities and chock full of adjectives like integrity, honesty, intelligence, ambitious…get my drift?

One thing that I WILL NEVER tell my daughters is that they have some special obligation to give black men priority over any other race of men. I will tell them in no uncertain terms that they are not to grade black men on a sliding scale just because of shared melanin content. I will also inform my daughters of something my mother did not–once you open your pool of suiters to all races of men, the potential is limitless.

And this should go without saying, but riff raff, sociopaths, psychopaths and narcissists come in all races, colors and creeds. Trust me, I know.

What say you, BB&W Crew?

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