It takes a lot of confidence to be this ridiculous.
I wrote a rather amusing (and reflective) article for Black Ballad about my dating history and trying out Tinder for two weeks:
“Now that I am older and I have the language to make sense of my girlhood and teenage years, I saw that the older we got, much of our dynamic was hugely problematic. He fetishised my body, admitted he was glad that I wasn’t ‘too dark’ and would refuse to eat the food at my house because it ‘might be weird’ – because haggis and black pudding are not weird at all – often opting for KFC and always pushed for us to meet at his house to avoid ‘feeling uncomfortable’. His parents were kind enough to me. In fact, his sister’s boyfriend at the time was a black man. But I never felt at ease. At the time, my boyfriend’s three best friends were a Half-Vietnamese guy, a Sierra Leonean brother, and an Englishman. Making jokes about each other’s race was commonplace, as was banter about each other’s cultures. A lot of guys and girls communicated with each other this way growing up, but there were often times the ‘jokes’ went too far.
“This was my first taste of interracial dating. At the time, I had a very difficult and complicated relationship with my community, especially black men. I didn’t trust them and actually, I was afraid of them because of my catastrophic relationship (or lack thereof) with my own father. The distance between my community and myself meant I ignored the toxic relationship I had with whiteness, the white gaze, and white validation.
“I have heard many stories of black women and black men being so invested in avoiding each other in the dating game, they seek to date literally any other race and turn a blind eye to racism and anti-blackness.
“The realm of love, relationships, and dating can be very murky waters to swim in. I have often found people get away with saying they have a ‘preference’ and that ‘preference’ cannot be questioned. ‘I would never date a black girl’ or ‘I could never bring a black girl home’ or ‘My dad would kill me if I ever married a black man’ or ‘I just don’t find black people attractive,’ are all things I have heard time and time again from Vietnamese and Chinese friends, Indian and Bangladeshi friends, and countless white friends. I have even heard Caribbean friends claim their parents or grandparents would disown them if they brought back an African, and I have heard African friends claim their mothers would not welcome a Caribbean partner – all extremely uncomfortable conversations to find yourself in. I’ve heard countless white friends reject the idea of dating outside whiteness, or specifying that a person of mixed race or someone white passing would be as ‘out there’ as they’d go. All of these people would otherwise be considered progressive and intelligent.”
Read the full piece on Black Ballad here.
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