I Don’t Date Outside My Race

People always question why I wouldn’t date outside of my race.  Usually, I prefer not to discuss a subject that I have already made up my mind on. Hell, sometimes I wonder if people say they would just to be politically correct.

Every day we’re inundated by relationship books, magazines, blogs and casual conversations all devoted to black women and the struggles they face while dating. Despite this topic being discussed ad nauseum, we often forget dating has a lot to do with personal preference and happiness, which doesn’t rely heavily on color boundaries; the choices made may be coincidental, not causal. This discussion of should I or should I not is as lively and fervent regarding black women as it is among black gay men.

From bearing the economical brunt of the household to disparaging statistics surrounding advanced education, the white-picket-fence image of a black man being content with dating inside his own race seems to be farfetched. So why should we force someone to date outside of his or her race? In theory, doing so should solve all of our problems; or, at the very least, give us more prospects – right? The more available prospects you have to choose from, the higher your chances are in finding “the right one.” However, often this strategy of casting a bigger net is the result of hopelessness and might yield the same results we had previously, just in a different flavor.

There’s nothing wrong with having preferences when it comes to dating. But whenever we decide to limit ourselves, then we have to deal with the consequences or realities. If you want to limit your preference, I don’t see the problem because you’re going to have to deal with those restraints when finding a partner. You are allowed to have unwavering standards and choices, but at the end of the day you must be aware that those standards will limit your dating pool. Those who limit their possible candidates to one race should not be shamed. If someone chooses not to date outside of their race does not mean they’re “racist,” they just don’t date outside of their race.

Even a few months ago, the Internet was abuzz with the release of Ralph Richard Banks’ new book, Is Marriage For White People?: How The African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone. Before you begin to wonder, the author is black and his wife is too; talk about irony. After reading the advanced excerpts from the book, I easily predicted the amount of attention the book would garner. In the book, the Stanford University law professor examines the relationships of black women when it comes to interracial marriage. The author suggests black women would benefit both themselves and the black race if they decided to marry across racial lines. These are the same suggestions we peg in our own communities when it comes to interracial dating. Often we ask if marriage is for white people because that’s all we’re exposed to seeing with a happy ending. Even a quick Google search of ‘gay marriage’ would bring up a host of images, but none of those reflect an all black gay couple. For me, the ideal still exists.

Interracial dating will never become a lackluster topic because everyone constantly feels they should insert his or her opinion about your happiness. Regardless of polarized judgments, assertions and even sometimes pointless commentary, there is a huge market dedicated to sensationalizing the issues of marriage and race. Not to mention  marriage itself is a huge cash cow, racking in millions and millions of dollars each year. Black women are a driving force behind the economy. In fact, it’s been reported that same-sex weddings could create hundreds of new jobs and pump millions of dollars back into our economy. With more people getting married, these unions could benefit everyone, not just those walking down the aisle. Don’t be stunned that the media has an effect on how we view race relations when it comes to dating. Because various forms of the media have been objectifying the traditional couple for so long, researchers have started to generate a body of literature documenting this phenomenal of interracial dating.

Let’s not forget that interracial relationships are nothing new. Given the historical relationships between blacks and the majority race, interracial couples have been around for many years—starting from behind massa’s closed doors. It’s difficult to paint all relationships with the same brush or color. There is no special technique when it comes to finding the perfect mate. The ultimate goal of a relationship is for the two people involved to be happy. Even though happiness might sound like a place in a far off interracial land, please don’t feel bad if you decide not to date outside your race.

I know I don’t.

Drew-Shane Daniels is the editor-in-chief of MUSED. He is also a contributing writer for other sites to help pay his student loans. And a branding and content strategist. He loves tacos, dark liquor and Dr. Pepper.

  • Brent

    I admire your honesty but I think you’re missing out by limiting your options. I enjoy having limitless possibilities when it comes to dating. I would never let race stop me from finding happiness. Most black men miss out by waiting.

    • http://www.gavinmlfletcher.com Gavin

      Well, if that’s the case, you’re limiting your options by not dating women… Let’s not confuse limiting with preferences.

  • It’s Cost Me A Lot, But There’s One Thing That I’ve Got…

    All I can say is if you are getting approached by good men of other races and you can not seem to find any good black men, then do not complain because you must live with your decision. It is your right to date whom you choose and if that does not include non black men, then so be it. Some may think your dating pool is small, but this is what you are comfortable and satisfied living with. You have made the bed now get all comfy and snuggly in it.

    • http://anorexicescapades.com BougieHippie

      Stay off my keyboard. Couldn’t have typed it better myself.

  • http://sunnydelyte21.wordpress.com Sunny

    I’m date whom ever catches my attention and I feel a connection with. I’ve date more so people in the latin community…but I’ve dated my own race as well.

    You can’t help who your attracted to and if you only attracted to people who share the same color as you then fine!!

  • Americanboi

    In reading this…i still have 1 question..WHY don’t you date outside of your race? We all are entitled to our preferences, so no judgements…but i read this thinking you were going to specify why, and your kind of defending the act of choosing not to without giving is the reason of the choice. That answer was never given. Is it that your not attracted to other races? Cultural differences? Or the fact that you just don’t want to turn your back on the black?

    • http://twitter.com/drewshane Drew-Shane Daniels

      I might continue to explore this more. I don’t date outside of my race because I’m not attracted to anything other than black dudes. We all have our types and mine is black. I think it’ll be a huge cultural divide.

  • bill

    Yeah I have no probelm dating outside my race but I just chose not to date white women. I don’t have anything in common with them and I refuse to be part of a long lasting streotype that black men are drooling animals who crave white women.

  • Josiah

    Wonderful article. It’s EXTREMELY refreshing to see a BLACK MAN state that he chooses another Black person, period. I honestly hope there are more Black, gay men like yourself.

  • Darnell Jones

    I think another discussion we should try to uncover is how Black American women are seen by men outside their race (speaking about heterosexual relationships). Black American women who are not biracial are unfavorably and have a harder time getting married and dating outside their race. Sometimes, it’s not always women who are at fault – if you’re not approached or seen as dating material let alone marriage material, then it plays a part in all of this. You know the stereotypes or “reasons”, angry and unattractive being the strongest, difficult to communicate with, ghetto or stuck up, etc. So, that’s a conversation that I would like to see happen.

  • http://batman-news.com/ Cummbottom

    Your choice not speaking for entire group love is colorless” refuse to allow this bigotry honor those opinions. There lost not mind it’s not unkind if you mind find time for happy romance.

  • Nadia A Adamsen

    Reasons for not dating outside one’s race:

    1. Constant questioning by others. You can walk to the market, down the street, or drive around with someone of your own race. It is easy to date someone of a different class, religion, or background, but hard to date a person of another race without constant comment or looks.

    2. Unwelcome advances by other men or women, completely fascinated by the available boyfriend or girlfriend, who is then perceived as available and easy to get by others due to his or her status as boyfriend/girlfriend of a member of their own race.

    3. Rude rejection by bosses, co-workers, family, etc.

    4. Family conflict.

    5. Perceived questionable reasons for dating someone of another race, e.g. sexual fetish, exploitation, hostility towards one’s own men, etc.

    6. Earning less money.

    7. Difficulties with picking up, handling, and registering children.

    8. Education and housing discrimination.

    9. Legal and social hassles.

    10. Inability to relate across racial lines.

    11. Children that do not look like you.

    12. Problems created for children from biracial backgrounds.

    13. Preference of children for member of other race.

    14. In a divorce, the other parent is more likely to get custody.

    15. Family disapproval including getting cut off from financial support, daycare, abandonment, and family events.

    16. Children will not appreciate background of other white parent.

    17. Whites are perceived as white without any cultural, religious, historical, familial, linguistic, and other history, as if white is just a color of skin that takes over entire identity. E.g. nobody is Jewish, Catholic, Muslim, atheist, Presbyterian, Bulgarian, Irish, Italian, German, Canadian, American, British, French, German, working-class, middle-class, upper-class, German speaking, Francophone, anglophone, Spanish tongue, etc. We are all ‘whitewashed’ as the same. Even homosexuality and bisexuality apparently don’t exist, because we are perceived as all the same.

    18. Dealing with blame for past racism that nobody is responsible personally for, which leads to conflict and hostility.

    19. Job discrimination, denial of benefits, etc. due to hostility and rejectionism of mixed couples.

    20. Hostility from white men and women if one tries to end relationship and go back to dating in one’s race.

    21. High divorce rate.

    22. Higher domestic violence rate.

    23. Higher rate of family abandonment.

    24. Higher rate of cheating.

    25. Higher rate of verbal abuse, arguing, neglect, and conflict.

    26. Destruction of genetic and cultural diversity to create a mishmash of a mixed race that has no meaning and no genetic lineage.

    27. Denial of child’s right to specific history and identity.

    28. Perceived favored status of minority, e.g. light-skinned black woman picked by white male over dark-skinned black woman. “She must have got him because she was light-skinned and had straight hair and was thin. She looks like a white woman.” Rather racist commentary from both sides towards someone.

    29. Feeling awkward socially and publicly.

    30. Loss of friendships.

    31. Loss of business deals.

    32. Having to be identified with the many people who date outside their race because of a fondness for dark skin, almond-shaped eyes, long black hair, dreadlocks, etc. only to find out their reasoning was a specific liking of a feature, and that they have nothing in common and no way of relating or knowing spouse/companion, but are only drawn to one thing.

    33. Being perceived as less attractive as the reason for dating outside one’s race.

    34. Constant interference in relationships by others, who perceive your relationship as no barriers.

    35. Mixed-race children being told they are better-looking, as if pure white, Black, Asian were somehow less. Also causes distress to mixed-race children.

    36. Constant awareness of race as difference.

    37. Poor communication patterns.

    38. Social obligations not normally applied to similar-race relations.

    39. Perceived selling out by minorities.

    40. No understanding by whites about history of racial discrimination, cultural difference, religious persecution, racism, segregation, slavery, beatings, etc. which would be automatically understood by others.

    41. Subject to love conquers all mentality that will suffocate any reality in the marriage on an emotional or personal level.

    42. Being victimized by someone who simply wants to rebel against racist parents, who is looking for drama, conflict, and attention, trying to make a liberal or ‘anti-racist’ statements, who is radically colorblind, or a user who takes advantage of people sexually.

    43. Perception that you are marrying up or down.

    44. Perception that you are marrying for money, to alleviate bad credit, or for higher socioeconomic status.

    45. Questions on level of attractiveness, sexual appeal by others.

    • JWorr

      40. No understanding by whites about history of racial discrimination,
      cultural difference, religious persecution, racism, segregation,
      slavery, beatings, etc. which would be automatically understood by
      others.
      ————————————–

      Absolutely Perfect….I couldnt have come up with a more thorough list of all the trajectories of why interracial relationships falter and crash.

      But I find White privilege / Colourblind Ideology by the White half of the partnership is a real culprit. Worse, they dont make serious efforts to get educated on the issues of Histoy or their own White identity and what that means as a social construct. they are unwilling to do the Anti-racist work!

      sooner or later both parties realize that merely good fucking / sexual chemistry, doesnt make for Social equality and respect inside and outside bedroom. one one doesnt like to be seen as the “exceptional Black person ‘ either who is different from the rest…

  • JWorr

    Intersting article…yes, I am only discovering it nowin2016 as Iwasnt aware of this emagazine /blog.

    iwill start by saying, that i agree with the views expresssed. there was a time in my life where I viewed interracial relationships as a Progress thing…a sign that race relations were improving, that equalty ws happening that hatred was dying.

    But I discovered a few hard releaties. One, that one cannot Fuck one’s racism away..or Social equality cannot be established by merely sleeping with the other.

    I discovered that White people in particular are very Lazy people when it comes to doing the Anti-racist homework. They dont want to do the reading or the critical thinking work of understanding Race and also acknowledging their White identity privilege and what that means Socially.

    Much to my Horror I’ve also discovered much Inter-racial racism / fetishism between Blacks and East – South Asians. I consider Latinos an ethnicity of Whiteness. I find Muslims equally racist in their Anti-Black racism, never mind religious differences.

    I could go on…but overall, interracial relationships dont Work, cause the couple may love each other,..but it’s Other people (family members, social network) who work to destabilize / undermine the relationship with their views of contempt and over-valuing the White equation of the partnership.

    The Black /Person of Colour often Live the Life of the White partner—their White hood, their family and social circle. It’s “much easier this way” is the line of thinking. Ok then, but The person of colour’s community is devalued, negated, seen as not having anything worthwhile to offer…I have observed this in an early interracial relationship I had, and in other Gay and Straight interracial relationships where Whiteness is always Privileged / Dominates.

    very problematic to see Black identity / community get erased and negated so Whiteness can thrive and continue undisturbed / centralized.

  • JWorr

    17. Whites are perceived as white without any cultural, religious,
    historical, familial, linguistic, and other history, as if white is just
    a color of skin that takes over entire identity. E.g. nobody is Jewish,
    Catholic, Muslim, atheist, Presbyterian, Bulgarian, Irish, Italian,
    German,

    ———————————————————————–
    A very critical point about Whiteness ..why it’s so Hard to pin down and interrogate White identity cause it always wishes to Morph into something else…religious, ethnic or national identity. It always eludes us / evades critique and accountability too.

  • JWorr

    @there’snothign wrong with preferences…
    —————————-

    so many great discussion points…but without sounding “too passive”…often it is the White person who does the “choosing” of partners. They have historically had this power and privilege of “selection” casue they have held the freedom to transcend and cross racial and cultural boundaries. the person of colour is often “flattered” by the White attention and is often cajoled / seduced into ‘going along with it all”….it is the path of least resistance.

    Sometimes White partnerships are an “escape’ and “passport” out of Oppression. And I dont mean this in a money / gold-digging sort of way…but Whites can seduce people of Colour because of their Lifestyle / Access

    ….If you are even a vaguely educated and ambitious Black person with a few dreams or social mobility goals…Whites often have a Network of social contacts, they can take you places / break down social spaces / barriers that an partner-of- colour may not be able to Transcend.