Why black women have mixed opinions on black men in interracial relationships
How my opinion went from indifference to frustration to acceptance
“When I dated white women, it was a matter of revenge,” he said to me. “For all the racist white men I’ve encountered over the years, who messed with me for no reason, it was a way to say, ‘Yeah, that’s right. And I fucked your daughter too.’”
I raised an eyebrow. On one hand, I understood how satisfying it could be to sit across from a man who clearly hated you based on something as trivial as skin color. On the other hand, considering I had a pretty diverse circle of friends in undergrad, I was uncomfortable about the idea of any friend of mine being chosen as a pawn as opposed to genuinely being liked.
I paused before asking my next question.
“With that logic, how would you feel if white men did the same thing to black women?” I asked him. “Let’s say that a black man had an issue with white men dating his daughter. If a white guy who’d been bullied by black men growing up came to dinner with a sista, smiling in the face of her black father, would that be cool with you?”
“Not the same,” he responded. “Black women have been disrespected, fetishized and tortured for centuries. Slave women were raped repeatedly. Meanwhile slaveowners’ wives were about as antagonizing as the men. So when a white man brings home a black woman, all of that flashes through the eyes of a black father. But when a black man brings home a white woman, it levels the playing field.”
I sighed. “But if you want to ‘level the playing field,’ why not just focus on dating the same kind of women you feel were disrespected, fetishized and treated as lesser than?”
“I’m dating you, aren’t I?” he asked me.
“Don’t do me any favors,” I said, letting all of the attitude I’d been holding in check come barreling out.