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04 November 2008

serial monogamy in the black community


how many of you have an auntie that was with the same man for 12 yrs before they got married? or your aunt and uncle met at 12yrs old and have been together ever since? or how many guys did your mom date before she married your father? if you are african-american, at least one of these scenarios is a part of your family history. this is serial monogamy at its best. and these are the examples that us black girls have followed for far too long.

when i think back to what my mother taught me about dating, my mind goes blank. my mother taught me all about being my own woman, being strong, being independent, but never what to expect from a man. unfortunately during my most formative years (6-13 yrs old), there was no man in my household. so when i started dating, i had no examples to reference, never determining if it what was right or wrong.

i was a fast ass growing up and always sought out male attention. i constantly had a new boy at school or in the neighborhood that i was enamored with. my mom would always say, "you change boys like you change your drawls." after hearing that so many times, i deduced that i was supposed to stick to one boy at a time. that did not seem so bad, but being a natural sagittarius caused me to get bored very easily (we are nomadic people). to solve that problem, i would stick with one boy at a time, but for very short periods of time. again i was hit with disapproval from my parents. my father would say, "you never give guys a chance. you should give them an opportunity to mess up before you toss them aside." so this is more advice that i took to heart and tried to integrate into my dating repertoire.

so when i went off to college, what i knew about dating was 1) that i need to stick to one guy at a time and 2) to stick with them until they mess up. thus my concept of serial monogamy was born. my first year of college, i was the sole black girl in my dorm suite. i watched my white counterparts go out every weekend and bring home a new guy each time. THOSE WHORES!!!!! actually i did not think that about them, they looked like they were having a great time. i spent my first semester pining after blue eyed Craig, who wasn't thinking about me. but i called myself being patient and taking on one guy at a time. hell i liked a lot of guys in college, but i never let it be known because i would always hear my mother's voice. so when most young girls were sowing their wild oats, i was behaving like an old maid.

i have spoken to my closest friends and they have all experienced the same phenomena. hell i saw them experience it in college. when i relocated to atlanta, i decided that i could reinvent myself. no one knew me here and i could do what i wanted. so i started dating. yes more than one guy for a short period of time dating. i don't remember all of their names or even what some of them look like, but i met guys and had great adventures with them. there was no guilty momma voice, no obligations, no long extended tolerance of bad behaviors, just fun times had by all. i even made some good friends along the way.

people ask me why black girls don't date. my answer is serial monogamy, its what we are taught to do. of course there are plenty of other aspects to the concept; socialization of african-american women, religious beliefs, the madonna-whore complex, etc. but like my cousin says , "normal is what you know." so if all the women in my family are serial monogamist, why would i be different? yes i can learn new things, but taught by who? when a female in the family decides to date, she risks being treated like a leper and gets the side eye from almost everyone.

but in 2008, i am trying to single-handedly break the cycle of serial monogamy. i have two success stories and am diligently working on a third. i encourage all single african-american women to see as many men as possible. i didn't say sleep with them all, but experience a variety of men. it helps you make the correct selection when you decide to settle down. if you need some help, advice or suggestions, hit me up. remember, i am the expert.

4 comments:

Kofi Bofah said...

I don't know how I can relate to your post, as I am not a woman.

Still, if you are dating multiple men, know your role / play your position. Do not expect to be treated like wifey.

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Assertive Wit said...

you know my dad's older sister was with her "baby daddy" for....hell, until my cousin was about 25 hahahahah he got out of jail...she married him...then they got divorced. 30 yrs with the same dude and it was all good until they got married...SMH

she's on husband #2 now...

suga said...

Loved this post.

To be honest, though, I sometimes wish I could settle down and stop hopping from man to man. I get bored rather quickly and usually date a lot.

When I was a teen, my mom told me the complete opposite of what you were told. My mom told me to date a plethora of people, so I could find out what I really wanted from a man. Experience as many as you can (not sexually of course, but in regard to personality and other such things). And I swear, I took that advice and ran with it. I've had so many boyfriends its ridiculous and I couldnt even begin to count the numerous "boos" lmao

I think we all need to find a happy medium, especially me, because I am way to quick to move on to the next man. lol

I have one friend and one associate who both ended up marrying their first boyfriends. They havent experienced any other men, and I sometimes wonder if that's a good or bad thing.

Ade said...

I am a success story. I have recently started dating and i am having a ball. I am also learning a lot about men very quickly. It definitely helps you find what you want and what you don't want very quickly. I am a success story - now let's see what happens.

And... you can be monogamous and still not be wifey! At least this way we are learning and having fun! Here's to the G&S (Grown and Sexy)