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Tyra Banks|Black Women|State of|the Union

There is an increasing number of educated and/or independent, black women…we’ll call them “EIBW”and a decreasing amount of these women who are actually getting married. Why is this? I have perused this situation.

These newly breed EIBW typically recant the same, old “gender roles” their parents probably assumed. The normal “duties” such as: cooking, cleaning, and taking care of children for a woman are becoming more uniform being that both parties are leading very busy and ambitious lives. There really aren’t too many professions that a man is in that you won’t at least see one woman.

Black males from broken homes as well as homes where their fathers were present, typically saw their mothers and grandmothers assume the role of caretaker, provider, cleaning, and cooking while their fathers either not around at all, doing his own thing, or those who were around just as providers, and fixing things around the house for the most part. Sometimes male egos are objected to the idea of actually having to take care of a child, let alone provide for the child financially, because often it is seen as something “feminine” to rock a child to sleep, give a child a bottle, bath, or change a diaper. At most, they would play with the child when it’s happy or take the child to daycare but no real caretaker position is usually assumed. You may hear things like “it’s a woman’s job” or “I don’t know how to do this or that”. It’s called learning, lest one forgets no female is born knowing how do take care of a child in any way; she had to learn too. Therefore, it’s safe to say that these statements are merely excuses for not wanting to take part in these responsibilities. Further proof of this is in the increasing number of black males who are fathering children but not married to the woman/women who mother their children who throw their child(ren) off on their (the male’s) mothers and grandmothers to take care of the child when it’s their (the male’s) “ turn” to take care of and spend time with their (the male’s) child(ren).

Of course, none of this applies to everyone meeting this demography, but a lot of it has to do with their (black males and females) upbringing and the “roles” that their mothers, grandmothers, and fathers played or didn’t play. For some black females, there is resentment, so to speak, from being inured—in the fact that their mothers and grandmothers were seemingly overwhelmed by daily housework, children, cooking, and cleaning— almost single handedlyand all the while working (as someone’s employee) just as hard and pulling just as many hours as their father. It typically wasn’t so much, for the woman of that time, ambition as it was trying to make “ends meet”. Some of these females even had to assume responsibility at a very early age to help their mother with these things and to raise younger siblings.

         There is hardly the “stay at home” mom mentality, especially with EIBW. A lot of black men are intimated by EIBW and their mentality. Maybe this kind of black male’s need to control and call all the shots in an evolving society were women are just as ambitious and hard working as men causes conflict. Perhaps they (the males) are confused of their role as the “male” in such cases. Sometimes egos are bruised at the idea of a woman making more money than a man and many of these EIBW are making close to, if not right at six figures. As Tyra mentioned, 73% of interracial marriages involve black men. One audience member, on Tyra’s show,  made the statement that if things keep going they way they are, black women (In America) will be extinct.  A black man’s “trophy wife” (marrying a woman based on looks or ethnicity alone) doesn’t have to be white, although typically whites are the ultimate prize, being erudite usually doesn’t matter. They could be mixed (black and other), Latino, Brazilian, Pilipino, etc. Trophy wives for black males are any other than that of black or the closest from black.

 It is rare that you find an EIBM (man) with an EIBW; there seems to be a conflict of interest. You may hear things like: “Black women have attitudes and are irascible” “A good black woman is hard to find”. This is an indication that the black male finds “otherseasier to “manage”; it indicates that they (others) don’t speak their minds as much and are more submissive and reticent (typically these are gold-diggers or those who depend on a man for their very livelihood).  I don’t believe speaking your mind and being honest with yourself and those around you makes one intransigent. The words “good woman” is subject to ones own interpretation. Of course, none of this applies to everyone meeting this demography but this is the current trend.

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5 Comments»

  M. Anderson wrote @

I dont think it has anything to do with the woman being educated. I think a lot of it has to do with what they (woman) want in a relationship. She is no longer willing to play the submissive role, because she feels she’s holding the same duties as her male counterpart.

Which as you stated results in a bruised male ego, or the EIBM looking for that type of relationship elsewhere. It’s true while women have taken over more aggressive roles in the workplace, they have abandon what a lot of men have become accustomed to. Of course if your mother/grandmother took care of the household, raised the children, cooked & clean your going to look for that in a potential spouse.

Just as women look towards a man to be a provider, even if they make their own money. Just because they are working, doesn’t mean their expectations for a spouse changes, I don’t see why it should be any different for men.

While it’s not fair to be a caveman and want your wife barefoot and pregnant, it’s a personal preference that isn’t that far fetched. I personally see taking care of the house a joint responsibility. But I find a lot of women want you to wash the dishes, cook, clean up, etc..but then won’t take out the trash, cut the grass, fix things around the house.

The absolute truth is, men are fine being difficult and alone, women are not. the EIBW you speak of still wants the traditional relationships without the traditional duties. And for that they have to be more patient when it comes to finding a spouse. If I decide I want to stay home and take care of the kids, it’s going to take me longer to find a woman that’s okay with that.

  indigoblu wrote @

M. Anderson:
From my experiences–talking to different men and women—a lot of black men are intimidated by educated black women, particularly if they have higher degree(s) than the man. This, again, is ego and money. I make reference to black because it is often not seen in the same light for many whites. In fact, white males seem to look for their mate based on their education and income far more than black males… more or less, building each other up.

This is actually the dilemma for EIBW: at least in the beginning, some black males claim that they want an independent woman; I think for the benefit of keeping his money….his money. A woman who is paying her own bills, has the ability to pay for all the things that she wants as well as those that she needs without a man, leaves a lot of men wondering what he is suppose to do and why he is even “needed”; it is more or less seen as “she must be the man, calling all the shots, she has all the money..not you”—another bruised ego. The male basically wants “his cake and wants to eat it too”. A woman wanting the male to feel like a “man”, so to speak, wants him to pay for something because otherwise, she could do everything by herself and with ease; what is his “function”?

As far as doing yard work is concerned, many women (my mother and grandmother are perfect examples) do not mind outside or inside the house work and they’re good at it, sometimes better than the male—this bruises the male ego often times too. As for a EIBW, if she doesn’t want to do outside work, she has the money to get it taken care of—again this leaves the male not “needed” ,.. so to speak (bruised ego). Their “role” is not as significant as they would like to believe, so that’s why it is necessary to work together.

In a changing world, one has to adapt to it’s changes (ego) so that would require the male to look at things differently (ego) or find someone who is willing, a less daunting task, to look at things as he does (ego). Why would a male want to change something that was always in his favor?

So we see…the ego is the main problem here. We all have egos, women are just typically better at dealing with theirs than males, which is understandable because males have typically had the advantage over females. In relationships, however, it’s all about compromise and making it work for everyone—at least it should be.

As farfetched as “barefoot and pregnant” may not seem in a male’s mind, it is becoming beyond farfetched for any ambitious woman. A lot of women, regardless of race, who are married/unmarried are choosing to having children late in age because they are career oriented and of course having a child would… at least prolong the incline. I’d have to disagree about men feeling fine about being alone. Even though it is more socially acceptable for a man to be a bachelor and “mess around” late into age, as humans, there is always a longing in us all to find love.

  M. Anderson wrote @

I hear where your coming from. I don’t think men have a problem with educated black women. I don’t think it’s an intimidation factor. I think that EIBW feel more powerful, therefore they act more dominant. I can’t blame them, because if your in a position where the ball is in your court, then run it! Yet at the same time “dominant” is not the traditional quality men look for in women.

Even the most passive man, wants to feel like he is still head of his household. And when a EIBW, (pardon my language) has you by the balls she is trying to take that away from you. Yes, you could argue it’s all “ego”. But isn’t is also “ego” on the EIBW behalf as well? She feels the traditional roles should be changed. As you stated, she can do it all on her own, yet she still wants the man to do his duties. Regardless if it’s just to, “let him feel like a man”. She’s doing that for both him and her. She wants to feel like he is still providing even if he doesn’t need to. That’s part of the whole security of marriage for women. Yet when she doesn’t want the traditional female responsibilities placed on her, what “function” is she providing?

I agree that more often white men marry women of similar education and backgrounds. Yet with our community it’s different. With arguably more & more women attaining higher education, while men in our community are adding to the incarceration & death tolls. EIBW are outnumbering EIBM. Most EIBW who are in school aren’t looking to marry right out of college. Their need to prove themselves doesn’t allow them to grow with a EIBM or a UEIBM, because they feel like it’ll take away from their personal accomplishment. The battle for control starts there. Their desire to start a family lingers long after their career goals have been met. And once they start competing in a corporate world, it’s harder to find someone suitable to their new standards. EIBW start finding themselves settling or refusing to settle, prolonging finding a spouse. Yet the blame is placed on the EIBM for not jumping at the chance to be with a woman who at 35 now wants to do what he wanted to do 10 years earlier. If the EIBM isn’t already married, he’s divorced, a baby daddy, or in the “bachleor” category bringing tons of drama and baggage that most EIBW don’t want to deal with. Another factor is EIBM are looking for a woman with the qualities to suit “THEIR” need. Most times a EIBM is looking for a woman to help build up his family, not his income. So If a EIBM makes 300K a year and is satisfied, why would he care if his spouse made 400K or 10K?

As far as the men wanting an independent woman. It all goes back to wanting someone of similar backgrounds. Although EIBW are more dominant, they still possess drive. Which is a quality men find attractive it in turns inspires and pushes an EIBM to be better. Yet don’t mistake pushing to be better to competing against. In a relationship, especially a marriage the independence should be put in it’s place. You should both understand that you are one, and are working together. There is no “I” in team. While most men are still conditioned to think that their wife wants to take care of the children, many EIBW feel it’s become a burden. Like they are being stripped of their career for a family. I’m not a chauvinist, I don’t think women should be confined to the kitchen, bedroom, taking care of the children, or just cooking & cleaning. But when did it become a burden to stay at home and nurture your child? Why is it viewed as being stripped instead of a sacrifice for the family? And before you say it, “What does the man sacrifice?”. His sacrifice in theory is, he’s taking care of the family. And his absence is made right by his wife’s presence. That’s been the traditional dynamic of the family for years, and although things are changing that’s been the root of many people’s foundational values.

We could go on and on for days, I’m just simply arguing a hypothetical point. And don’t mind my last comment. I’m a bit anti-relationship, so my comment about, “men being fine with being alone” was just me taking a virtual jab. We all need love, and maybe if we all just stop trying to control one another we could find it. -M. Anderson

  indigoblu wrote @

M. Anderson:

Ego: An exaggerated sense of self-importance; conceit. Excessive pride in oneself; self-esteem. The self, especially as distinct from the world and other selves.

The problem still remains “ego” either way you look at it. As I said before, it should be about working together, not playing any “role” or “function” but these are the images and such embedded in people’s mind in a world that is steadily evolving. Instead of working together to make things work, one finds him/herself rebelling against any change simply because that goes against the egos that we so desperately try to satisfy without much regard to how the other person feels.

Is there something wrong with a woman being goal-driven and ambitious? If in one’s mind it is, then that’s ego as well. Of course I can not speak for everyone woman , but I see it more so as more options/opportunity than as an “ego” , in this particular case, because she has for the longest been in a position where she’s had the disadvantage to the man’s advantage. Taking care of family, raising kids is not a burden (I never stated that) but it is overwhelming when you are pulling 70+% of the load and the husband 30-%. While you talk in theory, I’ll give you some truth. Most woman with families are holding jobs, contributing to the family’s financial needs, cleaning, cooking, and raising children, while the male is just contributing to the family financial need. Basically, you are claiming the EIBW as selfish because she is finally able to grab opportunities that she before did not have and men relished for centuries.

What would make you think she, as a woman, wanted to be in those “traditional” positions she was once in? Society placed her there; she didn’t have much of a choice. Of course, unless she feels her sole duty is to be “barefoot and pregnant”. In the traditional sense, 70+% of what the male wanted was often satisfied and the woman’s feelings and concerns were often suppressed/ neglected. Although I can not dispute there are EIBW who want power and control, I personally know many EIBW who are not power hungry and want control and they also do not want power hungry, controlling men either who thinks anyone needs to be “put in their place”; we’re all humans…not animals, not slaves. Be each other’s alter ego; life is all about balance, not tipping the scale. Thanks once again, for your comment.

Alter Ego: very close friend; a very close and trusted friend.

  Tee wrote @

On What our roles are:

It is an obvious reality that changing times place a demand on us to change the way we do things, respond to things or perceive things. This experience is even truer in gender relations. I think it is fair to say that either gender increasingly has to do more beyond what may was previously “restricted” as gender specific. I find it rather pitiful that we can still afford to expend precious energies “battling” over roles. The sooner we declare a cease-fire in the war that rages between the sexes the better it is for all of us. We all face common new enemies – the stress, lack of time and financial pressure of modern life. I find it only wiser for both sexes to accommodate for unfamiliar “roles” and be adaptive if we have any hope of managing the unrelenting pressures of change.
I opine that most men and women agree that increased gender equity will enrich both sexes. Also, that both sexes find that the strains of this relatively new world have made building successful marriages, raising children and leading satisfying lives ever more difficult. One would hope that the challenges unite us.

On Who we marry and why:

Most certainly, I do not speaking for everyone. I am sure we all have different ideas on what marriage is or is supposed to be, and this does have an effect on the choices we make concerning marriage, whether it concerns “gender roles”, choice of partners, “management” style or whatever else. Whatever it is that we perceive marriage to be, I think it is fundamental that it somehow expresses the essence of selfless sacrifice and shared experiences (this is a broad term that can be interpreted as sharing of responsibilities or even pleasures) that will sustain.
Maybe if we all took time to test our definition of marriage, then we may be able to adequately answer to the questions or suspicions that surround the choices we have made in our marriages. I am not sure if there is such a thing as a universal definition of marriage. It may be unique to our own personal journeys. Nevertheless, the importance of founding our marriage choices on a definition that will sustain crucial.


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