Too many of us focus on the destination not the journey when it comes to finding love. We dwell on how our desired soulmates should look, what kind of career they should have, which social circles they should be a part of and the love they can bring into the relationship but we don’t think about how prepared we are to receive them. Then, we wonder why most of us either end up with the short end of the stick in our relationships or our relationships unceremoniously end.
According to BlackDemographics.com, in 2016 only 29% of African Americans were married compared to 48% of all Americans. Half or 50% of African Americans have never been married compared to 33% of all Americans. To add insult to injury, BlackDemographics.com also revealed that in 2012 The U.S Census that African Americans age 35 and older were more likely to be married than White Americans from 1890 until sometime around the 1960s. Not only did they swap places during the 60s but in 1980 the number of NEVER married African Americans began a staggering climb from about 10% to more than 25% by 2010.
Let’s look a little closer at the situation. A qualitative study (sample research) was conducted by the Program for Strong African American Marriages (ProSAAM) from 2006 to 2009. 73% of the married black men who participated in the study felt that even though the negative effects of disproportionate black male incarceration, failures to meet their responsibilities and pursue education and decline in labor market opportunities, black women are disproportionately single because many are misguided in their approaches to attracting and keeping a mate.
The married black men who participated in the study also stated black women not exhibiting ladylike behavior (e.g., cursing, wearing revealing clothing), setting standards too high, placing more value on men who can offer material possessions and status, engaging in controlling behavior, lowering their standards to attract a man’s affection, and not being approachable (e.g., not friendly, bad attitude). After an interview with Sarah Adeyinka-Skold, who is a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania where she studies the marriage patterns of black women, The Philadelphia Inquirer revealed that the common myths that most black women are too angry, too independent, too strong, therefore, they don’t want to get married is not true.
If black women are not angry or too independent and are actually willing to get married, then what is the issue? Ergo the black woman whom I have come to know and love–Jay.