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One of the things that has been confusing me lately is the amount of Black people, particularly older Black people, that are constantly debating dating differences between Black people and their white and non-Black counterparts. It’s honestly been plaguing my social media to an extremely annoying degree.
One of the main things that I have heard on social media has been the same tired discussion of “talking stages” and “situationships” being prevalent in the Black community and how this has led to less Black people ending up in long term healthy relationships. This is also constantly paired with the statement that our non-black peers are typically happier in their relationships.
In my opinion, this is just another outlet for anti-Blackness to peak its ugly head out. It’s honestly quite ridiculous to adhere to the belief that all current issues in the dating scene are solely in the Black community. It’s just another way that we as a community have romanticized non-Black, (particularly white relationship dynamics), or just whiteness in general. There really is no concrete evidence to suggest that these modern issues with romantic relationships are a primarily Black or BIPOC issue.
I really want people to free themselves from the shackles of whiteness and de-center it as the pinnacle of success. Like how did people come to the conclusion that white people never have any of these issues in the dating scene? The amount of times some of my white peers have recounted their numerous failed talking stages, brain altering situationships and just failed relationships in general is high. The issues that people on social media try to attribute to Black people are more of a sign of the times rather than the Black community.
I’m so sick and tired of people, particularly older Black people or the “I was born in the wrong generation” people, pinning the blame on Black youth. These “issues” in the Black community are prevalent in all communities. Everyone can have problems in their romantic relationships. These dating hiccups are not isolated to one community. Whiteness has always been the standard for societal norms however, like everything else, this is not the case. White people can have messy relationship drama just as much as Black people. They are not exempt from these issues. Like people gotta be tired talking about something that’s not even real.
People go through these issues all the time. It’s so odd to me that there are people out here acting like we (Black people) are the main ones having this problem, one that I don’t think is a recent problem either. Most of your grandma’s and grand-daddy’s were out in “the streets,” they just don’t like to talk about it. Also, who’s to say that what society deems as a successful relationship is accurate? There is no set standard as to what a “good” romantic life should look like. And this honestly just contributes to the harmful narrative that Black people aren’t “good” people. As if this is something that makes you not a “good” person.
There are a lot of things we as a community need to unlearn about when it comes to romantic relationships and what they “should” look like. Growing up I’ve always felt as if people would put Black people in a negative light. As if there was something inherent in us that caused these negative situations to happen to us. We as a whole need to destroy the concept of whiteness as the universal benchmark for what’s “right.” The sooner we strip whiteness from purity or success, the sooner we will truly be free.
We must reframe what success in a romantic relationship should look like. There must also be a general understanding that problems or toxicity in relationships does not only apply to Black people, but to everyone. We should not be held to some unrealistic standard of purity. Standards based on whiteness have always had Black people take the brunt of the criticisms of the problematic issues in the dating world. Why is it that we romanticize white relationship dynamics? As if white people in these relationships don’t do the same messy stuff that everyone else does and loves to pin on us so much. The stories that I’ve heard are ridiculous and sometimes even worse than the most toxic Brent Faiyaz song.
We as a whole must rid ourselves of the idea that a “normal” relationship is something that everyone should subscribe to. We need to stop demonizing our community for living their own lives and making their own decisions. There is no reason why situationships and toxic relationships are solely attributed to Black people. Non-Black people do the exact same things yet I see no X, formerly known as Twitter, think pieces on them, where’s their critiques? It’s absolutely insane for people to be acting as if Black people are the only ones doing these things.
We as a community need to stop comparing and critiquing ourselves based on a standard that white people don’t even adhere to. I hope that in the future that not only do we stop seeing these atrocious takes on Black romantic endeavors but that the standard of romantic success isn’t based on non-Blackness, but on one’s own vision of romantic success.