Dionne Hill quotes statistics (I assume for 2000)
Forty-five percent of black women in America have never been married, compared with 23 percent of white women, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey in 2006. . . .She says.
I am a statistic.
A CNN video (very good) informs us that in 1910, 64 % of black men remained single compared to 48% in 2000.
Social scientists might opine, regarding this crisis, that yes, there does seem to be a sociological trend. The comparable odds for marriage for black women are less than those for white women, and fewer black men are getting married.
But so what? You are not a statistic. You are a woman. Or you are a man. You are an individual. Group statistics don't apply to individuals.
Ms. Hill continues
I am part of a generation of Americans who are choosing to postpone marriage while they pursue their careers....Among the men I have dated, there were definitely some who were ready for something a little more significant than I was willing to give. Did I drag my feet because I wasn't ready? Or was it because those men weren't right for me? It's debatable and probably a combination of the two.How honest. How refreshing. Owning it, Dionne.
Even more illustrative are the clips in the CNN video, Black in America.
We hear poet Saul Williams tell us that the most challenging days for black families lie ahead. Men disappear into the streets. Seventy percent of all black children are born to single black female-headed households. I didn't check that statistic, but the Department of Commerce tells us that half of all children in America will spend time in a one-parent family (Zill, 1988; Bumpass, 1990). A challenge, for sure, for all of us.
And Bishop TD Jakes tells CNN that it is very difficult to get a black man to be what he has not seen. The bishop is referring to the roles of husband, father.
Black in America features a black couples counselor, Ronn Elmore (exquisite) who tells us that when a black woman thinks that there is only one perfect mate, that she will stop looking, stop putting herself out there.
Black women are raised to be independent and strong, and men (get it, are intimidated). . . When a man thinks,Read the article and go to the links. I don't do the content justice.
She doesn't need my money.
I can't make her laugh.
I can't bring anything to this relationship
There is nothing unique and wonderful that I can bring to her life that she wouldn't have if I weren't there.
Whenever a man senses there's no opportunity (to give), a man backs away.
But statistics do refer to groups, not individuals. Divorce, beginning in 1960, rose to fifty percent, but has leveled off. The rate has stayed the same for a few decades, now. Still, no one looks at this trend quite like marriage therapists do. We're keenly aware that if half of all marriages are expected to fail, then half of them succeed, also. Half of all married couples make their relationships fly. Year, after year, after year.
Someone like me will say that therapy helps. Therapydocs talk about pre pre-marital therapy, pre-commitment commitment therapy. Understand yourself. Understand your style of communicating. Know what you need, and go after that.
See if he (she) can make you laugh. See if he (she) can add something to that already very extraordinary life of yours. Watch him (her) in those nascent stages of a relationship before sex (oh, and wait, please do, please wait for that, don't let it turn into that or that is exactly, what it will be). See whether or not you can grow together.
A baker might go with the metaphor, How good is the yeast, really? When you add the water to it, will it grow?
The obvious stumbling blocks, the stuff of that pre-marital therapy or pre pre-marital are the fears, the realizations of catastrophic, seemingly unresolvable issues. Another pair of eyes and maybe they're resolvable. Don't run from them. They'll catch up in the next relationship.
We fear commitment, we fear intimacy. We fear for our interpersonal conflict and fear raising children in a most violent, sometimes amoral society. We fear repeating the mistakes of our mothers and fathers. All good to talk about, work out.
But that being black and single thing? Sorry. It ain't necessarily so.