I must give props and respect to Dr. Ronn Elmore who wrote the book How To Love A Black Man. The book was definitely an insightful read for anyone interested in reading about relationships. The book predates the black relationship bible The Conversation and even Steve Harvey’s Act Like A Lady: Think Like A Man.
I love black men. They are strong, resilient, confident, and attractive. They are stylish, courageous, bold and creative. I protect them fiercely and love them unconditionally. If you’re going to fall in love with a black men, there are certain things that you must realize. If you’re single and you want to date a black man, then you may want to consider certain things. The advice that I’m giving is not just based on my personal relationship (with a strong, handsome and brilliant black man) but on the information gathered from ear hustling conversations between male family members and friends. This is how you love a black man:
1. Understand that unlike any other race he has a fierce need to lead and experience some level of control. Black men are emasculated and caricatured in our society. For this reason they are often mistreated and expected to be less intelligent and less competent. The most fulfilling relationships for them are relationships that reaffirm their manhood.
2. There may be commitment issues. Clearly when we look at our low marriage statistics, our community has issues with long-term commitment. Most black men that I’ve dated had issues committing to one woman for whatever reason usually described as fear of being hurt or fear of hurting. The key here is to be patient and don’t pressure or ultimatum him into doing anything he (or you) might regret. No subliminal “put a ring on it” antics… if you’re the one for him, he’ll take the steps necessary to keep and secure you forever.
3. Be willing to compromise on some things. Most black males over a certain age (say 25 or older) have at least one child. Add charisma and charm and he probably has more than one. You definitely don’t have to get involved in a situation where there is lots of baby mamma drama, but you may have to abandon your dream of the childless man. This is especially true the older you are (or the older he is). Also, many black men have had some run in with the law. Please avoid the Chris Hansons (child predators) but understand that he may have spent some time in jail. Don’t be so quick to dismiss him if he’s abandoned his criminal enterprise and his life is on the right track now. We all have lists right, so be willing to compromise on some things.
4. Brothers love to eat! All men love to eat, but black men really love to eat. Even if you don’t know to cook, at least pick up on some of the basics. You may be blessed to find one of those black men that can “throw down” in the kitchen, but if you don’t, a few culinary skills never hurt anyone. On Twitter I announced that I was writing this blog “How to Love a Black Man,” and one of my black male followers & friends say, “Answer: Rib Tips.” I rest my case.
5. Brothers are charismatic and charming. Everyone from our President, who has an undeniable “swag” – have you SEEN that WALK, to the brother at the bank who cashes our checks – there is something irresistibly attractive about brothers. You have to be pretty secure and understand that it is in their nature to be charismatic and charming (even the quiet ones after you get to know them). This is important to know because if you’re really insecure you may get into a lot of “squabbles” about the fine line between flirtatious and inappropriate. If he was able to catch your eye, you better believe that there are others keeping an eye on him – but as long as your foundation is built on trust and communication, you can navigate through this common problem.
6. Pamper your man! I don’t know where we dropped the ball and started thinking that pampering is only for women. Men love to be pampered to! There is a huge tourist market for black men to travel to Brazil and other South American countries to have these “sex-cations” with women of other races. The common theme in all of those pieces was that the women “catered” to them and made them feel like men. You know how much you like getting your foot rubbed? Rub his feet! Massage his shoulders. Caress his face. Make him dinner and serve it to him. Stop by the store and pick up his favorite candy bar on the way home. Treat him like a King and he’ll treat you like a Queen… pampering is reciprocal…
7. Support him. Ask him about his dreams and his fears. Do some research to help him make something come true (it could be as simple as helping him start a weekly poker night) all the way up to running a business (help him get his Tax ID Number). This also extends to outside of the relationship. DO NOT let anyone speak ill of your man in your presence (especially if you know that person has malicious intent or their grounds/claims are not based on anything factual or logical). Speak positively about him to others. Let him know that you’re in his corner.
Ladies and gents. Did I miss anything?