Have you ever run into these types? You know the ones who walk around like gods. Like you should bow down at their feet and beg them to date you because they are some rare delicacy, and to be with them would be some great honor bestowed upon you by the god of “good men!” I ran into these type of men all through graduate school. I attended grad school in Boston Massachusetts, definitely a college central, from law school to med school to business school, you name it! Home to Harvard University (Cambridge, MA), Boston College and other prestigious institutions of higher learning. The social scene brought young black professionals from these different schools together allowing them the opportunity to intermingle.
Let’s just say, if I was checking for a man to date there, I definitely did not find one. I was so totally turned off by the exaggerated air of importance these men exuded. It was suffocating. Exactly how I described above, they were a rare delicacy and everyone else (women and men alike) were chopped suey until one of them gave you time of day, then you become important! But it was like they didn’t have to pursue us women, you were supposed to swoon over them! Black men who THINK they are god’s gift to woman. Is this because the chances of us black gals getting married are so slim? Is this because educated men in America are indeed a rare delicacy? Or are these men just incredibly stush/bougie? I’d say it’s a combination of all three things that has got the educated black man’s head overly inflated! Sorry boys, the more inflated your self-esteem and ego does not make you any smarter or more desirable than the next, and reality check education does not = “good man” I REPEAT education does not = “good man” so get over yourselves.
Let me start with a memory so you can get an idea of what I’m talking about. My favorite memory at one of these young black professional socialite events: I see a tall dark handsome man dressed nicely in a suit looking sharp from head to toe. Okay! I thought in my head, he’s on point. He approaches me and immediately sticks out his hand saying, in a deep I am clearly very important tone, “Tom, ‘fraternity name,’ law student at Harvard.” Not even a “Hi there, I noticed you from across the room, you look beautiful.” Nope, no flattering or comical pick up line, just “Hi I am clearly very important so you should shake my hand and be glad I came over here to talk to you.” Minus 10 points. So I shook his hand, smiled and said “Hi, Betty, nice to meet you.” Here comes the funny part. He shakes my hand and looks at me with a puzzled expression and says “Sorority?” I reply, “Oh, no I’m not in a sorority.” You can sense his disapproval, “Oh. Oh. What are you in school for?” he asks. “I’m studying to be a clinical nurse specialist at the MGH School of Nursing.” He then looks at me as if he had just stepped in dog doo, and I am so serious when I say that. So I guess because I wasn’t in a sorority and I was in nursing school opposed to law school or medical school, I was just so beneath him and not worthy of his conversation. I mean he couldn’t be seen mingling with commoners in public, he was clearly a Prince! Minus 500 points! Well you can probably guess the awkwardness of the rest of that conversation. He somehow politely excused himself, and I was relieved at the fact that he did because I was so incredibly turned off! Even if I was desperate, and he was my last chance at marriage, I would have never gone out with him.
Am I desperate? Successful black woman in America……without a man! According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey(CPS) in 2009 44.5% of black women in America had never been married compared to 24% of white women. Yup us black gals are the least likely to get married in the United States. Around 60 percent or more of black students earning college degrees are women and we make up 71 percent of black graduate schools. Us black gals with some degrees under our belt earning generous incomes are really feeling the heat! According to the CPS income is correlated with marriage rates. People earning 100,000+ (personal incomes) were more likely to be married between age 25-29. Not us black girls or Latina’s! At this income level in this age group 93% of black women and almost 100% of Latina’s are single! This has gotten major coverage, I’m talking CNN, ABC Nightline, Psychology today. Everyone knows about us poor black women, and our being successful ruining our chances of marriage. Oh, and then we get labeled as “Divas” (with a negative connotations) or “bitter women” because we are independent and pay our own bills and don’t rely on a man. So are these black men taking advantage of our vulnerability here? Assuming that we should cling onto them like insecurely attached infants to their parents because otherwise we may end up alone and miserable? “Hey baby, you better jump when I say jump and wait on me hand and foot, I mean otherwise you probably will never get married. Better hold on to me and do what you gotta do to keep me satisfied.” Could this really be their internal monologue? Based on my experiences, I honestly wouldn’t doubt it in some cases. Here is a reality check for successful educated black men, just because we are watching our white and Asian peers get married left and right in our mid to late twenties, and the chances of us getting married during this time frame is incredibly low, doesn’t make us desperate! We are not going to settle at the first Tom in some stupid fraternity that we meet!
So whats the situation with educated black men in America? According to statistics from the Kaiser Foundation, only 7.5% of black men in America attained a college level or higher degree in 2006. Let’s not even get into the statistics of incarceration, unemployment, and HIV. Let’s just say, black women are enrolling in and graduating college as well as pursuing graduate degrees at a higher rate than black men. There is a noticeable gender gap in achievement here, so noticeable the reason for this gap is constantly being debated. I’m sure we’ve all heard the “more black men in jail than in college” argument (am I not stating this is true, I have not seen enough evidence to substantiate this claim). Okay so any way we put it, black women overall have a higher rate of achievement than black men. So in a sense, finding an educated successful black man, for women who are seeking one, may be some what challenging. Not to mention finding and educated successful black man who is interested in MARRIAGE! Due to the amount of media that the education gap has accumulated, black men in college or graduate school are very well aware that they are part of a small percentage. They could probably even look around their college classes and see that. Do they use this to their advantage? “Hey baby, you better come talk to me! I’m a black man with education! How often you gonna come across that! Better grab onto me while I’m given you the opportunity!” Yes, in a sense, black men with higher education are “rare.” But does this make them a “delicacy?”
I am going to come right out and say it, I dislike “stush” people. I don’t believe in keeping up with appearances or the Joneses. I am not going to change who I am to fit in anywhere. Don’t mistake me, I am a sophisticated women, I behave like a lady, and I have certain standards I live up to. But those standards are ones I have set myself and God has set for me. Let me explain what I mean here though when I say I don’t like stush people. I do not mind people being proud of their achievements, and I don’t have a problem with people enjoying the things in life they worked hard for, I don’t disagree with people choosing to associate with like minded people. I do believe that some people in this world are better people then others, but I don’t think this can be determined by the number of degrees somebody has, where they live, what their profession be, or how much money they make. I dislike people who think that just because they went to college and make a big salary it puts them above other people or makes them better then the hard working “average Joe.” I went to college, I went to graduate school. In fact I have two bachelors and a masters degree. Does this mean that I should only associate myself with people who went to college? I am still friends with some of my closest friends from elementary school who never completed high school. I’m not saying I am going to go be best friends with murderers or drug dealers, but a degree does not make me better than anyone else and not having a degree doesn’t make anyone less than me. I am also not saying that it wouldn’t be more likely that I would associate with people who graduated from college as our life experiences would be much more similar. College is a great, even though we only remember a small percentage of the material we learn in college, it is really beneficial for preparing us for the world we live in today and exposing us to a great deal of things, so I am a strong advocate of attending college. Nonetheless, the college of life in some cases can be just as comparable. Don’t come up to me bragging about yourself. It’s just not a turn on at all. Compliment me, engage me in conversation. Deflate your heads.
Wow! You went through an initiation into a fraternity similar to that of gang initiations in the hoods of New York and Los Angele’s! This doesn’t impress me or tell me anything about you! Why do we automatically assume college educated = a good man? Oh what you think there was a class in college called “how to treat a woman like a lady” or “how to abstain from cheating, and act like a real man.” Sorry ladies, there is no such course in any college in the US that I am aware of! There are a good amount of “dogs” in graduate school, don’t think education level makes them exempt from this category. In fact, some of the “stush” ones I’ve described may be even feel a sense of entitlement to be womanizers. Just think of rappers and athletes sense of entitlement. I had someone once tell me that I was lying to myself if I said income wasn’t important to me in finding a mate, insisting that there was such a thing as marry up or marrying down when it came to income. Nonetheless, I still stand behind my statement. I am not saying I would date the guy who was going to leech off of me, never work, sit on my couch all day smoking weed and drinking booze. I am saying that if you match my intelligence and level of refinement, you’re hard working, you go to work every day and put in time to make your money, you have goals set in life, you live up to certain standards, and you genuinely want more and you are not afraid to work hard for it, you are willing to work hard for your family, and you have a strong faith in God, you are bringing a whole lot to the table than a 100,000+ salary. I mean yea, I would love to marry some rich guy who can send me on trips around the world and afford for me to stay home for the first 3 years of all our childrens lives. I mean come one, no ones going to say they wouldn’t want to marry a rich man. But being rich in money doesn’t necessarily make you rich in character. I rather marry for the right reasons. I don’t want to be loved because I have this or that many degrees, because I’m pretty, because I am a member of some well known sorority. Oh, and black men without 2 or three degrees behind your name, stop assuming us educated black women think we are too good for you!!! So frustrating! Be secure in who you are, we respect that so much more than a man flaunting how much he makes a year.
You don’t have to be rich and have gone to college to be of good caliber, or to be a “rare delicacy.” A “good man” is a good man independent of these things. A “good man” is a “rare delicacy.” Black men with education, don’t misunderstand me or think I am trying to slight you! I think its awesome you went to college and or graduate school. In fact, I am EXTREMELY proud of you for doing so and I love you for it! I will be the first to praise you for your achievements. Nonetheless, I still want to be sought after and wooed and flattered etc etc. Let the size of your ego be based on what good you do with those degrees, how good of a person you are, what values you hold, your relationship with our Lord and savior. Don’t assume that because you went to graduate school and make 100,000+ a year that you don’t have to work as hard as the next guy. You do. I am also not saying every educated black man in America behaves like this. Just sharing something I’ve observed.