Who said Black men aren’t ready to commit (and to Black women!)? A new essay on the Good Men Project blog flies in the face of the media’s meme that Black women are the only ones who are single and seeking.
In his article, “Eligible, black, male, and hopelessly single,” Damon Young gives readers an inside view into the mind of Black men who, despite being educated, ambitious, and actively seeking Black women, still find themselves without a mate.
I’m sure that if I told a random dating-aged sista that there are actually black guys out there who genuinely want to be in a relationship (with a black woman!) but have trouble finding the right match, she’d probably tell me that they were a figment of my f**king imagination too.
Her skepticism would be justified. Hyperbole aside, according to the U.S. Census, while only 24% of white women and 23% of Asian women have never been married, a staggering 45% of black women have never walked down the aisle, a fact that’s mainly due to the lack of eligible black male options.
But if so, if these somewhat star-crossed men were mere figments of my imagination, I guess that was a bunch of bespectacled ghosts I saw at a Foreign Exchange concert a few weekends ago, mouthing each of Phonte’s lyrics while scanning the crowd to find the type of muse that would make a man write “Greater Than the Sun.” That must be an apparition who sends me a text message at least once a week, asking if my girlfriend has any newly single homegirls looking to “build with a brotha.” And I definitely must’ve dreamt up the dozens of game nights, weekly wing specials, and house parties I’ve attended in the past several years, the dozens of conversations I’ve had with the dozens of single men also in attendance, guys desperately seeking “their own Michelle [Obama].”
To further his cause, Young questions many of his single friends to find out what’s stopping them from finding love. For many of the guys, their own hang-ups prevent them from finding a mate because they want to have their lives “together” before getting serious with a woman.
One respondent, Sean, says:
Yeah, I want to have a wife and kids and all that. But, I need to get my shit together first. Most of the sistas I meet want to date “ready-made” brothas, and while I’m on that track, I ain’t making Audi money yet.
It’s not that sistas’ standards are too high. If I had an already successful daughter, I’d want her to date an already successful man. From a personal standpoint, though, I wouldn’t even want to enter a serious relationship unless I had my shit together.
As a man, I’d feel a certain way if I had a girlfriend but I wasn’t able to take care of her. Nothing special, but you’d like to be able to at least go the movies every weekend and buy her nice things. Yeah, I’m in school now and working towards something, but I’ve actually stopped dating a woman I was interested in because I wasn’t where I needed to be financially. It’s a pride thing.
Like some are sure to question, I wondered if the men Young wrote about were merely anomalies. I also wondered how brothas could possibly find it difficult finding a mate, considering the odds are in their favor.
For a bit of clarification, and to see if Black men really do have it just as hard as we do when it comes to dating, I sent a friend of mine a link to the article and asked for his thoughts. My friend falls into the category of men Young wrote about—31, single, attractive, professional, degreed, and ready to settle down.
Just like the men in the piece he said he was ready to get married and have children because he had “done everything on his [single man’s] bucket list.” When I pressed him further about why he was still single considering he was ready to settle down, he said what many of us say: he just hasn’t met the right person yet.
While I know that it may seem like men have an easier time finding love than women and that there are very few “good” single men left, this article helps to put things in perspective. There are good brothas out there, and they’re looking to meet you. All you have to do is remain open and trust you’ll find each other.