Swirling Singles

Sixty Days of (Mostly Sucky) Dating, By Guest, ‘Anissa Ashley’

Love and flirt in business office on work place

60 Days of Dating

By Ashley

After a considerable hiatus, I decided to throw myself back into the dating world. Thanks to social media apps like Tinder and popular dating sites like OKCupid.com, I dove in; and to my delight, I was very well received.

As a young African American woman, it has been my experience that interracial dating can be tricky. The upside to having a third party introduction, like the Internet, reduces the risk of hesitant Rainbeaus with thin skin from getting burned because the Internet is impersonal.

However, there is also a significant downside – in the short span of 60 days I met too many men who had fetishes about Black women. Almost immediately after “hello”, I was asked about my “curves”. Men often demanded “bikini pictures” and/or insisted on multiple pictures to prove that I’m not “fat”; apparently my strict Vegan diet was not enough of an assurance. Other men lamented about being shot down by ONE Black woman and therefore choosing to give up on all of us and/or their strong belief that Black women only want to date thugs and hoodlums.

My whirlwind, over and underwhelming experiences over the sixty days taught me a few things: a) even in this day and age, the perception of Black women is still inaccurate and too sexual, b) dating has changed drastically to the point where sex is expected immediately by prospects, c) amassing a large number of profile ratings on OKCupid does not necessarily mean that you will meet the man or your dreams online. However, it’s a definite guarantee that you will be contacted by a bunch of perverts asking if you like “white boys” or demanding that you have their children and clean their houses.

One night, before our first date, an older man (36) initiated a heart-to-heart with me. He confessed that he never dated Black women before because he did not feel he could compete with Black men – in confidence, sexually, and because “they’re just cooler”. Needless to say, we did not progress beyond his impromptu and unwarranted therapy session. Also, many of his views toward Black men were offensive. Unfortunately for him, I do not have issues with Black men and in fact, I have the most spectacular father in the world (and he is still married to my mother). I moved on.

At the end of 60 days, I gave up. I did not meet a single guy I clicked with and decided to spend my time better by re-investing in my career. Once I repurposed my energy, I made a fantastic discovery: my career is the perfect “boyfriend”; my career, will never tell me how much it enjoys seeing our skin tones contrast late at night or ask me invasive questions about my body.  Instead it provides for me, allows me to meet other successful people and puts food on my table. It’s a match made in heaven for a 20-something like myself!

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