How Do I Get Men Outside My Race To Commit To Me?

I have a question that I don’t think you’ve been asked before! I’m a slim and attractive, successful black woman who only dates Caucasian men – but I can’t get one to commit! It’s so frustrating, I seem to be a curiosity. They all say, “I’ve never been out with a black women before” as if all my bits are going to be different to any other woman on this planet. If I’m lucky, they’ll date me briefly, but it’s purely about the sex! (I haven’t had many sexual partners. I’m 36 and have slept with under 10.) I’m extremely fussy who I “put out” for. I’m on two dating sites: eHarmony and Match Affinity – both USELESS. I don’t find most men on them attractive and, of the ones that I do, they don’t like me! Anyway, I’ve just read your newsletter. You must be a mind reader as yesterday I was thinking of closing both accounts!

So here’s my question: men clearly find me attractive, but how do I get a Caucasian man to commit? My sister gets men to commit but you wanna see the state of them – I have higher standards! I’ve spoken to my guy friends (all Caucasian) and their feedback is: it’s rare that they meet black women (let alone attractive ones) and while they’d date one, they would never settle down and have children! Is this because most people picture their future from an early age and mixing it up doesn’t quite sit right? I’m so sick of the “you’re really attractive, why are you single” comments because I don’t KNOW why I’m single. Even the men I have dated think I’m great – so why am I not great enough to settle down with??? In the UK, Caucasian women have no problems dating black men. It’s not uncommon to see this type of couple – however, flip the coin and you’re in a different realm. The only men I attract are the ones I don’t fancy or have a different agenda to me! So I realise that in this ever decreasing dating pool, my numbers are even smaller than most women as I don’t and won’t date within my race. I just don’t find black men attractive! So what to do – am I living in a dream world and need to maybe just get into my head that I’m meant to be single? Thanks, from a rather frustrated and almost desperate Jae!

Dear Jae,

Yes. You’re living in a dream world.

To understand why, I need to pick apart your letter, line by line, and hold a mirror up to you, so you can see what I see.

You can’t MAKE anyone do anything.

First of all, your question, “How do I get a Caucasian man to commit?” sounds as silly to me as, “How do I get a black woman to commit?”

You’re a black woman, Jae. How would you answer that question if I told you that my black girlfriends always dump me?

If you were smart, you’d tell me one of these three things:

1. You can’t MAKE anyone do anything, Evan. Therefore, any question like “How do I make Jae love me? How do I make her want to change her behavior?” is pointless.

2. If black women are attracted to Jewish men but don’t want to marry us, there’s not much I can do about it, is there? No more than some guitarist can complain that women are attracted to him but don’t want to marry a 40-year-old guy who plays for tips in the subway. It may not be fair, but it’s reality. So if a black woman doesn’t see herself having mixed race Jewish kids, you’re probably not going to be a good fit for her life, Evan -  even if you’re both nice, attractive people. That’s life.

3. There’s no difference between black women and other women, Evan. They’re just “women”. So the question remains: why would any woman dump you?

That leads us to the next part of today’s tough love post: “Why would any man dump you, Jae?” (Note to other readers: this a good thing for you to contemplate, too, since humility and self-awareness are the keys to any long-term relationship.)

From your email, I’ve learned a few things:

Stop looking down on nice guys who want to commit to you.

You have a big ego.

You don’t find most men attractive.

You won’t date within your own race.

You look down on the commitment-oriented white men who fall for your sister since they’re beneath your standards.

Do I even need to say anything else as to why you’re still single?

No, I do not.

If you want to find love, just undo everything I restated above.

Get over yourself. You may be attractive and successful, but quality men care more about your kindness and character and humor than how much you make.

Learn to give men a chance, even if they’re not your type. After all, don’t you want a bunch of Caucasian men to give YOU a chance even if you’re not THEIR type?

Open up to black men, since that’s the most obvious pool of candidates who’d be interested in you.

Stop looking down on nice guys who want to commit to you. They’re better long-term relationship bets than the white men who are using you for exotic sex, don’t you think?

I appreciate your frustration and thank you for your letter, but you’re completely focused on things you can’t change (white men!) instead of the only thing you CAN change (your perceptions, actions and reactions.)

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Comments:

  1. 61
    Nicole

    @J.A. #60…I think that even in 2011, there is still the forbidden fruit and Mandingo angle to consider.  
    White men have always been able to date or sleep with whomever they wanted.  So while the idea of an up front, in the open, committed relationship between a BW/WM might seem novel, this kind of coupling has been happening in North America for centuries. 
    I also think the WW/BM combo fits into the paradigm of the white women being the pinnacle of beauty.  It “makes sense” to people. 
    And of course, there is just the fact that there are far more black men, let alone famous or wealthy black men, who are married to white women than the other way around. 
    I was hoping that having an amazing black woman in the white house would raise our profile, but alas, it has not.

    @A.L.  It would take more time, but you should filter on the number of college educated men of ANY race who exclude black women from their list of racial preferences.  You figure, looking tops down already shows a dismal picture, but when you factor in all of the men, black or otherwise who list that they don’t want to hear from black women, it gets even worse.  (But that doesn’t stop them from emailing you asking for sex).

  2. 62
    A-L

    RE: J.A.‘s #60
     
    Sadly, I think that Nicole is on the right track.  1) White women are considered the pinnacle of beauty (therefore desirable by all).  2) For whatever the reason, black women as a whole aren’t considered that attractive by society, and therefore their social value is diminished.  (Whether it’s because of physical characteristics or the domineering black female representations common in the media, who knows.)  3) There is a history in the U.S. where sexual relations with black women is fine, but due to their lower social value, no commitment is desired by the male.
     
    RE: Nicole‘s #61
     
    I went on Match, and doing a search as you suggested is a bit difficult.  But reverse match is the closest thing I can do.  This was for a 30 year old, college-educated, Christian female with no kids who put maybe/not sure if she wanted more kids.
     
    In New Orleans
    White only woman: 1766 reverse matches
    Black and white woman: 1783 reverse matches (but really 1439*)
    Black only woman: 1456 reverse matches
     
    When I changed my zipcode to Atlanta, I had 2000+ reverse matches in each category, so that wasn’t particularly helpful.  Perhaps if someone is better at using Match to figure out the answers to Nicole’s questions, they can pipe in here.
     
    I will say that it’s interesting that there are about 1780 guys who would be interested, but only 610 of them are college-educated without kids.  Gives us a clue about how discriminating we really are.
     
    *Note about how Match works.  By clicking black and white, if a person clicks everything but black, he would pop up in my profile because I clicked white.  Ditto for a guy who didn’t want white women, so long as he was willing to date blacks.  So the mixed race number is actually less than shown.  If a guy’s only willing to date one of my races but not the other, it’s not going to work.

  3. 63
    J.A.

    @Nicole

    The problem with the mandingo angle is this- it’s a myth that BM have the largest genitalia.  There is no statistical proof the race correlates with penis size.  That doesn’t stop BM and WW who like BM from thinking it does though. 

    Plus, and I know this isn’t very PC, but most non-celebrity WW/BM couples I see- the WW is usually unattractive.  Perhaps it’s because she knows most WM won’t date her and because a lot of BM would?  Like Chris Rock says: “BM will date ANY WW!”  The one WW I know who likes BM is average looking at best.

  4. 64
    Nicole

    @J.A.  At no point did I say that black men had the largest genitalia.  It’s a stereotype, and it’s one that benefits them.  It’s amazing how widespread the belief is.  Funny that you jumped to that conclusion b/c of my reference.  That’s all about you and not me. 

    Regardless of the supposed size of black men’s genitalia, black men AND women are viewed as being hypersexual by some people.  There has always been this idea that we are these wild, oversexed creatures.  For men, in the dating game this is a plus. It means that women of other races will be curious and more attracted to you. For women, you’ll get crude messages asking for a hookup from people who don’t think it’s a problem asking you for sex while insisting that they’d never want to date you(which says so much about what they think we are like). 

    I don’t think that anyone who has sexual interest in black men ever complains or notices that they aren’t really any different from other men.  That’s how fetishes and stereotypes work.  If you don’t fit one, people dont’ stop believing them.  And the one person who fits is is taken as “proof” that it’s true for everyone.

    People fetishize Asian women the same way.   For some people, all Asian women are “hot” and the relative attractiveness or unattractiveness doesn’t matter.  People think black men are really “big” and if they find one who isn’t they’ll just brush it off as an anomaly or maybe not even notice.

    I don’t make the rules and I certainly didn’t create these stereotypes and please don’t accuse me of writing things that I never even wrote.

    @A.L.- Thanks to the internet, you can find a lot of places where people feel free to state all of the things that they think are true about black women, and none of them are EVER good.  And as I’d mentioned previously, when people believe in negative stereotypes, they frequently see/hear those things whenever they see a black women.  No matter how attractive, poised, or educated she is, they still see the same thing when they see her.  Or they assume she’s one of the about five black women in America who isn’t loud and uneducated and mother to a bunch of kids by different men. 

    Well, I live in an area where a lot of the men (who otherwise claim to be very liberal), largely exclude black women from their preferences.  A lot of men either have “Asian or White” or everything but black checked.  It means I dislike and consider the services that don’t make racial preferences visible to be a waste of time and money.    And yes, I hate when those people turn up in my matches b/c I would NEVER contact someone who put that or respond to people who put it (b/c you know, they will ask for sex or decide perhaps that you don’t fit the stereotype or are otherwise cute and still try to “chat”).  The flip side is that you rarely find a black man who lists a racial preference (unless it’s to state that he only wants to hear from non-black women).

  5. 65
    J.A.

    @Nicole:  I didn’t mean to accuse you of saying something you didn’t say.  I actually didn’t know what the word “mandingo’ meant and looked it up haha!  From there I guess I just misinterpeted what you were trying to say.  A lot of the points you just said make a lot of sense.  There are too many people who are attracted to certain people for the wrong reasons.

  6. 66
    Nicole

    @J.A.  Oh, no problem.

    Just funny that the stereotype makes dating so easy for black men but so impossible for black women and unfortunate that it makes men think that any black women can be asked for sexual favors (that I guess their ancestors would have just taken).  So sad that in 500 years that is all of the progress we have made.

  7. 67
    m

    1) White women are considered the pinnacle of beauty (therefore desirable by all).  2) For whatever the reason, black women as a whole aren’t considered that attractive by society, and therefore their social value is diminished.  ”

    That’s not an accident.

    And since J.A. directed the question at me instead of Nicole, I’ll respond that I certainly have my theories.

    There is a lot more exposure in the media of the “Tyler Perry or Eddie Murphy dressed as caricature of black woman” than there are roles for a Gabrielle Union or Kerry Washington.

    Zoe Saldana opened two of the biggest films of 2009, Avatar and the Star Trek reboot, and she didn’t  get even half the media exposure of, say, a  Blake Lively.

    It all boils down to the competition for mates that those who are considered – I’ll repeat, considered, which boils down to perception, which can be deliberately shaped - the pinnacle of beauty don’t want. 

    So that is why I think this

    @ M:  I agree that the media doesn’t really promote WM/BF relationships as much as BM/WF relationships. “

    is. 

  8. 68
    Jadafisk

    I don’t think it is easy for black men. They get turned down *a lot* when attempting to date interracially. According to the OKC data, they get massacred re: online response rates. Their stereotypes make them sound like horrible prospective husbands/fathers, and they deal with the overall social stigmatization of blacks as well – the rate of interracial pairings that involve blacks of either gender is exceedingly low, especially considering our population size relative to that of other minority groups. The idealization of black male characteristics, real or stereotypical, is largely happening within the black community.
     
    63. “Plus, and I know this isn’t very PC, but most non-celebrity WW/BM couples I see- the WW is usually unattractive. Perhaps it’s because she knows most WM won’t date her and because a lot of BM would? ”
     
    But… I’ve noticed the same about white male partners of black women, as well. While I don’t date white men (just never happened, for a variety of reasons including the one at hand), I find a wide variety of them appealing, so it’s pretty shocking that I virtually never find the white men I’ve seen with black women attractive. The ones that message me online are about a standard deviation less attractive than the minority men who do, often older and larger, as well. I give white guys a fair shot, but I’m  unwilling to play status exchange.

  9. 69
    Greg

    @Karl
    Thanks for being one of the few people who makes sense on this board.  Even though you’re white and wouldn’t understand all the issues of the black community, your advice makes perfect sense.  Jae is a giant hypocrite.  She is upset that white men can’t see past her race, when she can’t see past race herself.  And many black women posters on here have a definite complex.  Just because you’re a woman with a degree doesn’t make you better than black men. You may claim that “most” black men don’t have jobs, are players or some other stereotype, but men could claim that you as a black woman are likely to be bossy, loud, manly or overweight.  Statistics prove that on average black women are more likely to be overweight, have STD’s and have out of wedlock children.  Based on these statistics would it be fair to exclude every black woman?  Would it be fair to assume that white women are better since they on average have less of these problems? Of course not.  Do you see how ugly stereotypes can be.  I thought we were supposed to judge people by character and not skin color.

    I know a black girl just like Jae.  She told me she liked me, especially how I treated her and that I had all the qualities I was looking for.  We became very close and I even though she would be the one I’d marry. However, she couldn’t see past my skin color.  She really wanted to marry someone white.  Her choice.  Now she continues to be rejected by the same men she chases, many of whom have treated her poorly and used her.  I used to feel bad for her and was even hurt and upset at one point, but not anymore because she’s being foolish.  How can you be upset that white men don’t give you a fair shot when you refuse to give other men a fair chance?  People are people. Each group has their own issues, but in the end we’re all the same regardless of skin color.  

    Like Karl I would run from someone who wanted to be with me primarily because of my race and the perception that came along with it.  I want someone to love me for the person I am, not what I look like or my race.  Jae you are shallow and its sad.  Follow Evan’s advice.  Stop looking at race first and start looking at character.  Only then will you find happiness.

  10. 70
    Greg

    Even though people have been reluctant to use the R word to describe the letter writer I will. It is 100% OK to have preferences, but it is racist to view people as unworthy simply based on skin color.

  11. 71
    Latoya

    Wow, all she said was she did not find black men attractive. So all black women have to be attracted to black men?

    If so, let’s all agree to like men if your men and women lets all like women. Let’s all not have a physical preference. Let’s all just put a bag over our heads and date whoever has the best personality. Only in a creul world. She has a preference, white guys.

    Evan, you just don’t understand. I mean, do you find every black, white, Asian and Indian man and woman you come across attractive? If so, your probably a freak of nature. No one would be on this site if we did not have a PHYSICAL preference.

  12. 72
    Saint Stephen

    @Latoya
    I find women of all race attractive if they are attractive as an individual- not because of their skin color which has no bearing on looks.
     
    If the LW has a strong preference for white men, to the extent of ruling out all black men of her race- she should go for it. But mind you, she wouldn’t have written to Evan if she was successful in getting her strongly preferred white men to commit to her.
     
    Furthermore, just as she has a preference for white men- so do white men have a stronger preference for women of their own race.

  13. 73
    Greg

    Latoya your comment makes no sense.  You obviously didn’t read the entire article.  There’s a difference between having a preference and completely ruling out every man on the planet who doesn’t have white skin without even getting to know them.  Men are men, no matter what the skin color.  And you can’t make a certain group of people want you, so you sometimes have to expand you options beyond your strict preferences.  That was Evan’s point.  
    Example, I personally prefer women with big breasts and long hair.  This doesn’t mean I exclude women who have short hair or small breasts.  That would cause me to drastically limit my dating pool superficially.  And there would be nothing I could do to make the limited pool of girls like me, not to mention my shallowness would be readily apparent.
    The letter writer also seems like she has some personal problems that are readily apparent to the men she wants to date. She can’t even see her own hypocrisy.  She’s mad that white men won’t commit to her because she’s black, but at the same time she refuse to date anyone who isn’t white. The article said it best:
    Learn to give men a chance, even if they’re not your type. After all, don’t you want a bunch of Caucasian men to give YOU a chance even if you’re not THEIR type?
     

  14. 74
    Greg

    The letter writer reminds me of a black girl I’ll call Tanya I know who’s in her early twenties.  She was only willing to be friends with black men, but desperately pursued white men who were unwilling to commit to her.  I didn’t know this was the case when I met her.  We developed a close friendship, she liked me and we soon were seeing each other regularly and even travelling together.  When I told her that I wanted to become serious, she told me that she only wanted to have me as a friend. However, I eventually found out that she still wanted to pursue a white man that she had met before me.  He had made it clear that he only wanted her for a casual relationship and she always complained about how he had hurt her and was selfish. He also had a drinking problem and was involved with other women. I was very hurt and couldn’t understand why she would do that.  All of her sisters were married to white men, and she had a terrible relationship with her absentee dad and other male relatives.  She also had bought into the negative stereotypes of black men despite being black herself.  It seemed that she felt white was automatically better.

    I showed a picture of Tanya with her old guy to some 3 of my female friends in another city when I was hanging out with them getting over the pain.  One friend was black, one white and one mixed.  The all told me to cut Tanya off immediately.  They all agreed that her old guy was very unattractive, and that Tanya was exactly like another girl they knew, who only cared to date white men regardless of how they treated her and wouldn’t commit; even when much better options of other races were available.  Its very apparent that Tanya and the letter writer both have serious issues.  Refusing to date someone of your own race even when you like them and know they’re a good man and desperately idealizing another race is troubling and racist.  And that’s probably why good men, both white black Asian etc. are scared away from Tanya and the letter writer.

  15. 75
    Greg

    Oh and I forgot to add that just like the letter writer she was extremely beautiful.  I’ve never been that strongly attracted to any woman. And she even told me that she had “high standards.”  This letter hits really close to home.  It’s almost like her and the letter writer are the same person.

  16. 76
    Ken

    Maybe, you’re putting too much emphasis on phsical feature such as skin color and your “type”. You should just look for someone that you have more than just a physical connection with. By the way, I am a white man that no only committed to a black woman but has been married 5 years. I am fairly attractive as I have never had a problem getting attractive woman, so keep your head up.

  17. 77
    Michelle

     Skin color, like body type – tall, skinny, etc- is just another factor of physical attraction that a person can have a preference for. Is a white guy called a fetishist if he has a preference for a blond white female? Never. How ridiculous would that be? But idealizing and exclusively pursuing based on ANY racial characteristic fits the definition of a fetish. So yes, a white man who exclusively pursues blond white women technically has a white fetish. 
    We only get upset at other people’s mate preferences insofar as we feel rejected by them. Which is why as a black woman I’ve never had a real problem with Black men preferring to date white women, because I don’t prefer black men, although I have become more attracted to them as my attraction to more classically  masculine men has grown in general. This increase in range of what I’m attracted to will hopefully work in my favor. 
    Would I date an Asian or Indian? Hypothetically yes, but their image is not what I conjure when I think of a man I desire and want to pursue, therefore I understand what a white male who has always pursued white women may feel about a black woman. 
    Regardless of our ideals, I think Evan has demonstrated with examples from his own life and from the success stories of his clients that some criteria matters more than others and we can find the happiness with someone who is far from what we idealize.
    That is the only message that should have been directed at this woman and not the unfair and harsh criticism or her racial ideals. We all have them. Get over it. 
     

  18. 78
    marymary

    I,d date any race. knowing someone’s race tells you nothing about them. it doesnt tell you where they were born, what language they speak, what their religion is. I have no preference for eye colour or hair colour either. I do have a soft spot for red hair though.
    i don’t recommend we all rush out and date the two-headed but I think actually, no, it’s not okay to have physical preferences if you’ve reached a certain age and still single. I,d say that your search for the physical template is blinding you to what really matters.
    And sadly the older we get the less likely we are to meet anyone,s physical ideal so we need to be flexible. It,s what inside that counts.

  19. 79
    TJ

    I won’t bother trying to analyze the heck out of her preference in men or taking her to the mat for her perceived arrogance as that’s already been done.  Still, the reality is that our dating choices are not divorced from and unrelated to history and social norms.  Life ain’t fair but it is what it is.  My perspective is peculiar to the US because that’s where I live, but I imagine black women in other parts of “the West” deal with similar realities.  I’ve dated all kinds of men but at the end of the day, I exist in a culture and stream of history that a) sees race as a hierarchy with whites on top and blacks at the very bottom b) views black women in particular as being of low status, little value, and hyper-sexed but not due the respect, bodily autonomy, or protection that puts the sexuality of other women on a pedestal c) subscribes to a standard of beauty that references a northern European norm and d) values women overall less than men and primarily in terms of beauty.  Of course these are gross generalizations and not everyone buys into these notions uncritically.  But enough people do that when I’m dating white men in particular there are certain very obvious ways that this sometimes influences our interactions. I walk into the situation knowing that some of these are men who have been taught subtly from birth that I’m an exotic flavor of the month who is good for hot sex but “beneath him” when it comes to love and marriage.  I walk in knowing that even if he really likes me, familial disapproval or peer disapproval has the potential to put the brakes on it.  No point in sweating it.  They will do exactly what they want to do and because they are at the top of the gender and racial hierarchy in this country they have a lot of options.  Unless they are a genuinely exceptional person, they will go for what they know and what they find affirming to themselves.  Move on, work on yourself in the meantime, develop realistic expectations, and decide where and if you can compromise.  If you keep doing the same thing, lightning may strike, but you’re likely to get results.  One can’t always have her cake and eat it too.  

  20. 80
    Bridgettweeter

    LOL. Black men state all the time they only choose to date white women AND some how this is very understandable, BUT let a black women say she is perfers white men THEN the world comes to a stop. ACCUSATIONS of self loathing and hating ones self comes along. WELL let’s look at this whole self loathing thing. The number of black women who date black men are 10 to 1. The rest of the black men are either gay, in prison or suffering from addiction. THIS is the dating pool in which her sister is able to find a committed man. WHY would I have a drug addict or a ex con or a brother on the down low as a good mate. THE ONE guy who is straight and employed knows he has his pick and sleeps with all the women he is able to NEVER having to commit to ONE. There are more college educated black women than there are men. We know that college education increases the income. So these women are making more money with corpate career while expected to date the local truck drivers, cooks and ex cons simply because SHE has been born black.  REALLY???? The AMERICAN male is taught the very last thing in this world he should be stuck with is a black woman. GIVE me a f BREAK!!!! I feel you sister girl. IT isnt in your heard. IT IS REAL. YOU ARE NOT APPRECIATED FOR YOU DARK SKIN THICK LIPS AND AMPLE BUTT. YOU ARE SEEN AS THE COMPLETE OPPOSITE OF BEAUTIFUL AND NOT DESERVING OF RESPECT LOVE AND COMMITMENT. My advice GIVE UP ON AMERICANS. THEY area lost lot. Consider moving to Europe  where beautiful women are just beauty regardless of the darkness of their skin.

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