Category: Single Black Women
The vicious slaying of Mike Brown by Ferguson, Mo., police has once again shown that the narrative the media paints surrounding black people in America more often than not includes depicting us as violent thugs with gang and drug affiliations. It’s safe to say that Brown has become a victim of what I like to refer to as the “Trayvon Martin effect” in the media.
Trayvon, who was killed by George Zimmerman, was depicted as a gold-grill-wearing, weed-smoking teenager in the photos used by the media. There were no photos of Trayvon smiling with his family members or being just your average happy teen, which his family members said he was. Similarly, the photos of Brown that have been picked up by the media included him throwing up a peace sign, which conservative media has translated into a “gang sign.”
As tensions remain high, not only in the town of Ferguson but also on social media, Twitter users created #IfTheyGunnedMeDown to make a statement on how the media draws a biased narrative when it comes to telling the stories of black men and women. The following images not only tell a truthful story but also prove that we, as black people, know what our narrative is, but we are also not blind to the fact that the media will, of course, be biased in showing the truth:
#IfTheyGunnedMeDown what picture would they use
Yes let’s do that: Which photo does the media use if the police shot me down? #IfTheyGunnedMeDown
#IfTheyGunnedMeDown, and I was unarmed, what picture would the media use to create a racialized bias?
What picture would they use #IfTheyGunnedMeDown? Note that I’m holding a simple airsoft gun.
#IftheyGunnedMeDown Which pic the news gonna show? I look fly in both tho
#IfTheyGunnedMeDown would they use my pic on the left or the right?
#iftheygunnedmedown which picture would they use?
#IfTheyGunnedMeDown which pic would they use?
#IfTheyGunnedMeDown is not only a sad commentary on what it means to be black in America but also shows that in order to have our own narrative correctly reported, we have to do the reporting ourselves.
Following the slaying of Brown, various media outlets falsely reported that protesters were chanting, “Kill the police,” but if you followed the social media accounts of those at the protest, they verified that the protesters were shouting not “Kill the police” but “No justice, no peace.”
Several residents in the St. Louis area have taken to their social media accounts to provide an accurate narrative of what’s going on in Ferguson. People like St. Louis rapper Vandalyzm and Alderman Antonio French have diligently updated their Twitter and Vine accounts to provide videos of the protests and the unfortunate looting that has occurred.
As the Ferguson police continue their investigation into the police killing of Brown, residents of the city have the right and just cause to shout and scream for answers. Brown’s killing proves once again that those whose jobs are to “protect and serve” are sometimes the ones we need to protect ourselves from, especially if we’re Black.
To express your outrage, please contact Attorney General Eric Holder via email at AskDOJ@usdoj.gov or the Office of the Attorney General Public Comment Line at( 202) 353-1555.
*Original article published on The Root
Last year I wrote about things in marriage I don’t think I’ll like. Things like having to share a bank account, taking on a new last name & dealing with in-laws (oh boy!). But there are many more reasons why I am afraid to get married. Here they are in no particular order:
- Sex with the same person over & over (and over) – It’s no secret that doing the same thing with the same person repeatedly can get boring. Even if it is your favorite thing to do! It’s hard to keep things fresh over the years and even women fear being stuck in a routine.
- Dealing with his shiftless friends – Every man I’ve ever dated seems to have at least 1 no-good friend. That friend who keeps him out late, tempts him with his bachelor-like ways and doesn’t have much regard for married life. Sometimes that friend can end up in your guest bedroom or unknowingly ruin your marriage.
- Loss of my independence – Men aren’t the only ones who are afraid of losing their freedom. Before getting married, women can come & go as they want, dress as sexy as they please and spend their money how they want. We don’t have to take anyone else’s feelings into consideration. If I want to exercise every day or cut off all my hair, I can! I can use my vacation days how I want & don’t have to clean anything until I get ready. We can even leave the bathroom door open!
- Missing my girlfriends – I love my girlfriends! They mean so much to me as a single woman & I can’t imagine the day when I won’t be able to call them at midnight for a little ‘girl chat’. When I get married I can’t talk to them for hours & hours on end like I do now. Not to mention, I would have to be mindful of the information I’m sharing with them & consider my husband’s feelings instead.
- Adultery – This is probably my worst fear because there is little I can do to keep a grown man from cheating. There are so many stories of men cheating and everyone knows how much that can tear a family apart. A lot of other transgressions can be forgiven but breaking our marriage vows will not be taken lightly. I haven’t stayed single this long to end up with a man who disrespects me & my body so adultery is definitely grounds for divorce.
- My body – Even the Scripture says “The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband.” This means that when a woman gets married her body belongs to her husband (and his body belongs to her). Whether the couple decides to start a family, or even to fulfill her wifely duties, she is surrendering her body to the marriage. Men don’t seem to understand how serious that is. I don’t think they know how scary that can be for a woman to have to yield what was once hers to someone else. Men, think of it like your bank account: Before getting married, you were the only one who had access to your money & could do whatever you wanted with it. But once you get married, your wife has access to your account and it is no longer just your money. You may not want her dipping into your bank account all the time but in the interest of making her happy, you let her. It’s the same way with our bodies. That’s deep!
Ladies, am I leaving anything out? Do you have any fears about marriage? How do you plan on handling them (if you haven’t already)?
Men, how would you handle these fears that women have? Do you have any advice for women who might be facing these fears? I’d love to hear them, so please share in the comments below –
She asked me the question because she was on the fence about whether she should have a baby. I remember that time in my life. I think I’m still at that time in my life. Should I have kids? But she was asking me seriously. I was her closest friend with real baby insight. What was the deal? Do the heart-melting moments outweigh the bad stuff and make it totally worth it?
As usual, I am a focus group of one. There seem to be a lot of people out there who think having (and rearing) babies is The Most Fun Ever. They are all like, “Oh my God! And then I get to quit my job and FINALLY buy that house in the ‘burbs and make crafts All. Day. Long. and sing songs and, OMG, I cannot wait!” And I think those people are incredible. (Don’t get me wrong, I love crafts as much as the next gal. I just like to do adult crafts. Alone.) Those people have a different genetic makeup than I do. I think my kid is awesome. All two hours a day I spend with him after living the working mom dream. And then I like to put him to bed and think about how I can’t go anywhere because it’s basically illegal to leave the house. JUST IN CASE. (There’s a lot of “just in case” in parenting. I want to tell people to go ahead and stop talking to me, just in case I get violent.)
But when posed the question, “It is totally worth it?”, I really can’t answer simply. On the one hand, I have a tiny
person: I own a 28-inch human being. He has tiny human pants and little New Balance sneakers and he thinks I am awesome. Like, really awesome. He sees me and he’s all, “Oh thank God it is you! I have been waiting on you since forever and I have no concept of time so that’s basically my whole life!” And he smiles and makes “ahhoooohhh” noises that are pretty funny because he thinks I’m absolutely following what he’s telling me. Mimic him and his mind is blown. We speak the same language!
No, shrunken human, I have no idea what you’re getting at.
But then other times he is a tiny life terrorist. He’s the biggest, most selfish ass in the history of the world. He wants what he wants when he wants it and that’s exactly 30 seconds before it’s humanly possible for me to have it. All the toys in the world are meaningless compared to an outlet or a live wire or anything else that could instantly kill him. He stole everything I knew: my life, my professional life, my social life, my sex life. I now spend evenings putting meat into a blender and then tasting it. Pureed meat! Sh*t ain’t right. He’s turned our cat into a manic-depressive who no longer stares out the window, but rather throws his body against the screen in an attempt to break through and plunge to his death.
And some of those things, like slaving over homemade baby food and losing the love of the family cat, are OK. His cuteness does make those things worth it. But the other stuff? The loss of anything that resembles my former life? That’s where things get complicated. When he wakes up screaming bloody murder just moments after I put him down, right as the wine is about to hit my lips, only to smile and laugh when I go into his room, I frankly think him a deviant little f*ck. A tiny human who was sent to this earth to make me think long and hard about who I am and what I believe.
But that’s not an answer. So I answer like this:
Having a baby is like losing your leg and winning the lottery. Winning the lottery does not make it OK that you’re without your leg, but it does give you enough of a distraction that you don’t completely lose your mind. Yes, your leg is missing, but you’re on a yacht. Would you rather be in a trailer with a leg? Who knows. Guess it depends on whether you felt like going for a jog.
My leg is gone. Blown to smithereens. I have to relearn to walk and dance and run and do everything else I used to know how to do, but I won the lottery, so that’s going to help.
Of course I miss not having a baby. When people say things like, “I don’t even remember what it was like!”, I cannot relate. I remember exactly what it was like. IT WAS AMAZING. I drank in real bars on weeknights. I made last-minute plans. I could get on an airplane without two Xanax and a booster brew and a sincere prayer that the small boy doesn’t freak out at 30,000 feet. When I made a decision, it was with very little other than my own comfort and convenience in mind. Those things come dead last now. If they come at all.
I can’t tell you whether having kids will be worth it for you. And that whole, “We are waiting until we’re ready” thing? Right. You are never ready for this. When the tiny human cometh, all bets are off. And from then on, the question is never again whether or not it’s worth it. The question is how you make it worth it for them.
*Article originally published on Huffington Post.
Found this great article geared towards men. It seems to be some much-needed and very good advice!
Last week’s article, Preparing To Become A Wife ““ 10 Tips For Single Women, gave great tips for wives-to-be and inspired me to sit down and write out my thoughts on being a great husband. In no way am I proclaiming perfection in any of these areas, but like any relationship you have to work hard on the positives in order to become an ideal partner.
Prior to my marriage I would’ve never been able to construct a list like this and I hope my experiences can influence someone to develop positive habits prior to saying “I do.”
1. Develop An Intimate Relationship With God: (as seen on Preparing To Become A Wife ““ 10 Tips For Single Women)
You cannot enter into a successful covenant with a husband wife if you don’t first have one with God. Seek biblical wisdom, study the word, develop a life of prayer and be dedicated to living for God. This will strengthen the marriage covenant when God allows you to walk into that season. A three-cord strand is not easily broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12)
2. Be Faithful:
Being faithful isn’t just restricted to being a “one-woman man.” You have to be faithful in every aspect of your marriage. Be faithful in the way you budget your finances as well as the time you spend with your wife and family. Your wife will always respect you when she’s able to trust you to be faithful to the life that you’re trying to live together.
3. Plan Together:
Your wife is counting on you to have a realistic vision for the rest of your lives. Your marriage should include goals and a purpose that you two can openly discuss and achieve together. For example, if you two are planning to buy a house, how are you going to do that? To get the ball rolling, try writing down some short-term goals and post them on the fridge. When a goal is achieved you should acknowledge and celebrate it together.
4.Constantly Remix Your Love Language:
Your wife will appreciate your creativity when it comes to showing her how much she means to you. Remember to date your wife and always keep her guessing when it comes to how you show her that you love her. Get clever with the gift giving and remember that even though it’s the thought that counts they can always tell just how much thought went in to a gift.
5. PDA Is Much More Than Being “Hands-On”:
Express your feelings for your wife in public often. PDA is more than just locking arms or lips at the mall. When you’re around your friends give compliments to your wife, praise her cooking, her outfit, or how proud you are of her recent accomplishment. Use social media to tell your wife and the world how much she means to you. (I love you @lcnurse10).
6. Be a R.E.A.L. Man:
Realize that you have a responsibility to set the standard of living inside your household.
Earn the right to call yourself a man by displaying Godly standards of headship.
Always put your marriage first.
Love unconditionally and eternally.
7. Make Sure Your Roots Are Solid:
Having deep roots makes you dependable and gives your wife assurance. Be rooted in your faith, marriage, and job. Your wife should know how dedicated you are. Having deep roots will show that you are committed and reliable even during adversity. The trees that survive a storm are the trees with the deepest roots. As your roots deepen, your branches will grow and you will bear nothing but good fruit.
8. Adapt To Your New Environment:
When you’re married the adjustment from the single or dating life can be a challenge. You’re going to be spending more time (a lot more) with your wife than with your friends. Leaving your gym shoes in the middle of floor might have been ok at your bachelor pad but with marriage comes new rules on household etiquette. Adapting smoothly into married living will make your wife more comfortable and ease any nervous feelings that she may have. Discuss with your wife on how your household should be run. This will help alleviate future arguments.
9. Be A Leader:
As a husband it is imperative that you demonstrate the characteristics of a good leader. You must be patient enough to listen, confident enough to decide, and worthy enough of submission. If you don’t have the right answers, seek them out. If you can’t find the right answers, ask for help. Your wife is your helpmate and her opinion and input is just as important as yours. All decisions should not be left up to you alone. Tag-team often on problem solving and decision making with your wife. Be a president and not a dictator.
10. Pray Out Loud:
Here’s a quick secret: one of the sexiest things you can do is randomly grab your wife by the hand and say, “Let’s pray.” Having a bold prayer life shows your wife that you’re not the end-all-be-all and that though you are the head of the house you still answer to a higher calling. Your willingness to pray out loud will inspire and increase the faith of your entire family.
What tips would you add to the list for single men?
*Article originally published on Black and Married With Kids.
I was talking to a friend earlier today about how I don’t think most people are willing to change until they meet someone worth changing for and not a moment before. He tried to convince me that women need to “fix” themselves first if they wanted to attract the right man. Specifically, I needed to fix the things that aren’t right with me or at the very least the things about me that haven’t worked in the past before starting a new relationship. The problem I have with his argument is that if I haven’t met anyone I want to be in a relationship with, why on earth would I want to change now?
Of course, the argument could be that I might not meet a man I want to date until after I “fix” myself. But unless I was a pathological liar, highly unattractive or just plain crazy, I don’t think that “fixing” myself will help me find a good man any faster. I look at everyone I know who is married & they all have plenty of flaws! They just found people that could deal with them all. It seems to me that having flaws shouldn’t prevent anyone from finding a good mate; after all, how many people in this world are perfect?!
I have no problem bettering myself. I have no problem acknowledging my flaws & working on them. I don’t even have a problem listening to others tell me about my flaws (I may not believe them, but I’ll at least listen). The problem I have is making a bunch of changes that aren’t necessary. Would you throw away a completely delicious meal just because it wasn’t perfect? Or would you allow someone to taste it first, see if they like it & then make improvements only IF they didn’t like it? Well, that’s how I feel about relationships. Why correct anything until you know it needs to be corrected?
I know I’m not perfect – I don’t have a lot of patience, I’m not the best housekeeper & I like my alone-time a little too much to be in a relationship sometimes – but these are the types of things that I don’t necessarily think should be changed. A lot of people struggle with not having patience. Not saying I shouldn’t work on it but it shouldn’t be a deal breaker. I’m not a good housekeeper, but so what? Isn’t that what maids & housekeepers are for? Surely, a man wouldn’t get rid of a good woman just because she leaves a few clothes & shoes lying around the house. And yes, I like my alone time but that just means I’m not clingy, which I thought most men don’t like anyway. My point is this – why should anyone “fix” themselves when what they’re already doing may work for the right person that just hasn’t come along yet?
My friend argued that as long as I wasn’t working to fix myself then being single will continue to be my problem and no one else’s. I can’t blame being single on not finding a good man because when I meet him I wouldn’t be ready anyway. I can’t blame my ex’s for things not working out because I didn’t do what it took to make myself a better girlfriend. After all, men want what’s already fixed not what’s already broken.
I’m not saying I should never strive to be a better woman, but what should that motivation be? A man shouldn’t be the reason for me to change who I am, so if I am comfortable in my own skin then why change? My future husband may be perfectly fine with me not cleaning so why bother changing that about myself? He may not care how tidy our house is and would much rather pay a housekeeper than to have me stressed out over cleaning up all the time. Because I don’t know what my future husband will & won’t like about me, I prefer to stay as I am.
So, is my friend right? Should I “fix” myself first & then concentrate on finding ‘Mr. Right’?
Or do you agree with me? Should I stay just the way I am and not worry about changing myself until I meet a man worth changing for?
Please share your comments below –
1. The person who cares less has all the power. Nobody wants to be the one who’s more interested.
2. Because we want to show how cavalier and blasé we can be to the other person, little psychological games like ‘Intentionally Take Hours Or Days To Text Back’ will happen. They aren’t fun.
3. A person being carefree because they have zero interest in you looks exactly like a person being carefree because they think you’re amazing & are making a conscious effort to play it cool. Good luck deciphering between the two.
4. Making phone calls is a dying art. Chances are, most of your relationship’s communication will happen via text, which is the most detached, impersonal form of interaction. Get familiar with those emoticon options.
5. Set plans are dead. People have options and up-to-the-minute updates on their friends (or other potential romantic interests) whereabouts thanks to texts & social media. If you aren’t the top priority, your invitation to spend time will be given a “Maybe” or “I’ll let you know” and the deciding factor(s) will be if that person has offers more fun/interesting than you on the table.
6. Someone who hurt you isn’t automatically going to have bad karma. At least not in the immediate future. I know it only seems fair, but sometimes people cheat and betray and move on happily while the person they left is in shambles.
7. The only difference between your actions being romantic and creepy is how attractive the other person finds you. That’s it, that’s all.
8. “Let’s chill” & “Wanna hang out?” are vague phrases that likely mean “let’s hookup” — and while you probably hate receiving them, they’re the common way to invite someone to spend time these days, and appear to be here to stay.
9. Some people just want to hookup and if you’re seeking more than sex, they won’t tell you that they’re the wrong person for you. At least, not until after they score your prize. While human decency is ideal, honesty isn’t mandatory.
10. The text message you sent went through. If they didn’t respond, it wasn’t because of malfunctioning phone carrier services.
11. So many people are scared of commitment and being official that they’ll remain in a label-free relationship, which blurs lines and only works until it doesn’t. I’ve said it many times before, I’ll say it again – “we’re just talking” is opening the door for cheating that technically wasn’t cheating because, hey, you weren’t together together.
12. Social media creates new temptations and opportunities to cheat. The private messaging and options for subtle flirtation (e.g. liking of pictures) aren’t an excuse or validation for cheating, but they certainly increase the chances of it happening.
13. Social media can also create the illusion of having options, which leads to people looking at Facebook as an attractive people menu instead of a means of keeping contact with friends & family.
14. You aren’t likely to see much of someone’s genuine, unfiltered self until you’re in an actual relationship with him or her. Generally people are scared that sincerely putting themselves out there will result in finding out that they’re too available, too anxious, too nerdy, too nice, too safe, too boring, not funny enough, not pretty enough, not some other person enough to be embraced.
15. Any person you get romantically involved with you’ll either wind up staying with forever or breaking up with them at some point. These are equally terrifying concepts.
16. When dating, instead of expressing how they feel directly to you, a person is more likely to post a Facebook status or Instagram a Tumblr-esque photo of a sunset with a quote or song lyric of someone else’s words on it, and while it may not mention your name, it’s blatantly directed at you.
17. There are plenty of people who’ll have zero respect for your relationship and if they want the person you’re with, they’ll have no qualms with trying to overstep boundaries to get to ‘em. Girl code and guy code are wishful thinking and human code isn’t embedded in everyone.
18. If you get dumped, it’s probably going to be pretty brutal. People can cut ties over the phone and avoid seeing the tears stream down your face or end things via text and avoid hearing the pain in your cracking voice and sniffling nose. Send a lengthy text and voilà, relationship over. The easy way out is far from the most considerate.
*Article was originally published on Thought Catalog.