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We face tangible consequences from society’s accepted view of our Blackness as an object of damnation or hypersexuality.We have to constantly prove our worth to the world through our work ethic and willingness to perform labor for everyone else.When presenting myself as a dating prospect, my checklist took into account the many expectations that men place on women to be seen as attractive.From references in popular media to talks with family and friends, it was made clear that one of the top expectations was that women would/could not make the first move.Even when dating apps allows for women to initiate the conversation with a romantic prospect, the direction of the connection seems to still be ultimately is controlled by men.I haven’t found research on Black women’s chances of securing dates when asking in person, but there is certainly tons of material with unsolicited advice and suggestions on what Black women can do to be seen as more attractive to/for men.But after falling in love with my ex, I experienced the intensity of my first serious relationship and endured the pain of my first breakup.
In the past, I did what I have always done and chalked the lack of interest up to the way I positioned myself in the dating field.
By making the first move, Black women can take the disadvantaged role we’ve been handed and potentially turn it into an empowered one.
This entails stepping into what is considered a more “masculine” identity or role of being assertive in a way that is traditionally only reserved for men.
The Black Youth Project is a platform that highlights the voices and ideas of Black millennials.
Through knowledge, voice, and action, we work to empower and uplift the lived experiences of young Black Americans today.
Even when I step into the role of the chooser in my dating endeavors, that reclamation of power still requires me to ask permission for my humanity to be seen and to be understood as worthy of love.