6 Ways the Black Male Scarcity Myth Hurts Men

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By Patia Braithwaite

One of my male best friends is quite the catch. He’s a handsome, educated, motivational speaker, and an Amazon bestselling author. He’s got the face, the body, and he’s just incredibly dope. Every girl needs a guy like him on her team. Recently, while drinking fresh-squeezed lemonade on 53rd street and Lexington Avenue, we had an interesting conversation about relationships.

“This summer has been good to me,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s the fact that there are no good black men or what, but I’m really pulling quality women. It’s crazy.”

I scrunched up my face and sipped my lemonade, “What do you mean? Why is it crazy?”

“I mean, I get that I fit a mold, I’m young, educated, I have a job that sounds good on paper. So I think women are just really on it lately…”

Something about his statement bothered me. I looked him in the eye and searched for some clarity.

“Could it be that you have a lot to offer?” I said. “And maybe these women are actually seeing you for who you are?”

He shrugged, “We all know there aren’t good black men out there.”

There it was:  We all know there aren’t any good black men out there.

I’m used to the stereotypical image of beautiful black women sitting around and lamenting about how there are “no good black men,” but, in all that bullshit debate, there’s not much discussion of how the myth affects some successful black men.

The conversation with my friend hit me like a ton of bricks: the black male scarcity myth messes with men too.

My observations:

1. Successful black men have their guard up:  If you assume that I’m only interested because you “fit the mold” or “look good on paper,” than there’s no way you can take me seriously. You are looking for me to show my hand, confirm your suspicion that I’m just hollering because of your salary or your job title. You can’t connect with someone you are building a case against.

2. Successful black men underestimate the intangibles: In another life, I am a poet. Chances are, if I’m into you, it’s because you are weird. You watch Basketball Wives with me on the low, you sing Coldplay songs to me, or maybe you were fat in the twelfth grade. Yes, the dude at happy hour that dons the scrubs or the suit is sexy, but the guy inside the suit – the one who secretly wears the same socks twice in a row is the person I’m in love with.  The tangibles — titles and comas and tax brackets — aren’t everything. The man at the core, imperfect and a little strange, is everything. Don’t underestimate the intangibles – everything else can be blown away with a strong enough wind.

3. Successful black men have less patience for me women bullshit:  Can I blame you? If you are moving through the world with the idea that the ratio is in your favor, why would you tolerate anything other than perfection? Here’s the thing though: no one is perfect. Successful black men can be uncompromising, but they should be crystal clear about what it is they want.

4. They don’t feel overwhelming pressure to settle down: See number 3. If the ratio is in your favor then there is never any rush, right? Also check out Dr. J’s post: Why are so Many Black Men Single

5.  Successful black men confuse mediocrity with greatness: A friend of mine told me that when he’s with his black friends from home, he feels like he’s doing big things. But with his college friends (read: White and Asian friends), he’s come to realize he’s doing what’s expected of him: being a grown up. Successful black men can fall into the “but I’m a black lawyer/doctor/finance guy” trap. They can get so consumed by their own achievements that they forget there are new (and perhaps more rewarding) heights to reach.

6. Successful black men sell themselves short: My brothers, if you meet a woman you deem “quality,” and your first thought is that she is only into you because of your job…you are selling yourself short. The key here is that quality begets quality. If someone you think is dope sees something in you, always assume it’s your dopeness. Assume she’s seeing the quality in you beyond your 401K. If you assume she’s only seeing your job or your education, that means, on some level, you are only seeing your job…and trust me, no matter what you do, you’re selling yourself short.

So those are my thoughts! I’m clearly not a successful black man, so fellas, I’m interested to hear your thoughts and observations. Ladies, what have you noticed? How has the scarcity myth impacted the men in your lives?

Patia Braithwaite is a Brooklyn-based relationship writer. Her work has been featured in The Coral Gables Gazette, Florida Inside Out Magazine, Yahoo Shine, and BounceBack.com. She’s currently working on a non-fiction book that explores the various ways men see God and how these views impact their romantic relationships. Check out her musings and more at: www.menmyselfandgod.com

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  • Well Enuff

    I'm going to agree with this well written article. As a black male who has his ish together, attracting females does come easy. That said, attracting them is only half the battle. I can pull phone numbers and go out with a different person every night, but building a solid relationship requires more effort. Making a connection has nothing to do with your relationship resume. It's more about taking the time and effort to find what intimate connections exist between me and who I date. Knowing that attracting females easier also makes it tough to stay in a relationship through the tough times. As a co-worker of mine put it, "Unless she's the one, why should I waste the best years of my life in a relationship that isn't perfect for me?" I don't think I'm special, but being that I "fit the mold" seems to make other people think so.

    • FlyyLibrarian

      You must have missed the write up Streetz did on "females".

      Or just not give a fu*k.

      • Well Enuff

        No I read it and commented, but notice in I refer to myself a a black "male" in the second sentence… and I still don't give a fu*k.

  • Stanley

    1, 2, 3, and 4 I have no problem with. Since this is me, and it's probably going to be like that for awhile. But, 5 and 6? No, not me?
    And by the way, I'll fix my issue when the time is right..

  • Mr_SD

    This post got me feeling all exposed n stuff..lol

    • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com Tristan

      right #3 nearly sank my destroyer

  • Adonis

    For the minute their I thought you was "Maya Francis" because I sensed a trait that is severely lacking in today's modern (single) black woman.

    "Taking the time to try to SEE through the eyes of an American (Urban) Black Male"

    Basically to see what his condition is like, and what he has to deal with in the dating game.

    Now, there is NO SUCH THING as a black male shortage. 80% of BW can have & keep a black male around, for sex, WHATEVERship, & marriage. Especially if she is young, cute, childless, chaste and has a positive attitude.

    Now, what there is a shortage of, is ATTRACTIVE alpha black males for all the black women who want them. It's like 10 women to every 1 male. So, if SHE GOTTA HAVE the top male. 90% of the time, she has to share him with another black woman. No getting around that. It is what it is.

    • Adonis

      Now, let us define male & female success, the way I see it. You are free to add, subtract, agree & disagree.

      A Successful (at least straight) Black Man is

      - Black & Male
      - Can inspire a woman to allow him to rent (WhateverShip) or legally "own" (marriage) her womb to create a family
      - Can acquire, maintain resources to create & sustain & defend his family

      So basically, get resources (via money), get poon, & to be able to protect & provide.

      A successful (at least straight) black woman is

      - A woman who is black in America
      - Who as at least "below average" looks, childless, chaste, in-shape
      - in her most fertile childless years, secure a commitment (Marriage) from the best male she can s*xually attract to create a family

      Now, I believe that most people who are not radical feminists would agree with this idea of success with their own twists.

      And if that is true:

      The number of SUCCESSFUL black men & women (whatever definition you choose) is close to EQUAL.

      So, however many successful black men you think are out there, that is how many successful black women are out there. So, the lack of successful black men is flat out MYTH.

  • Peter Parker

    Well as a successful single black brother, I see two paths you can take: 1. Enjoy the fact that you are a rare commodity and have plenty of fun with many women. 2. Embrace your accomplishments and actively seek out a woman who can embrace you as a man first and understand your accomplishments were obtained through hardwork and sacrifice. I say this because when you have a career, property, drama free, degrees, and etc., it's so much easy to just smash women left and right and enjoy the fruits of labor of the many women in the world. Or, if you are like me and ready to build a family, then you just have to weed out the bad apple chicks and just focus on finding your queen. The latter is so much harder to accomplish which I find to be sad because if you have achieved alot you really don't want to deal with a woman who has not acheived atleast some of the things you have accomplished. Not being picky but when building a team, you need a teammate who can help balance things out.

    • BlueSteele

      "Not being picky but when building a team, you need a teammate who can help balance things out."

      Giving me life right now!

    • Bree

      Exactly Peter. Bottom line is to black women "good black men" are in high demand and there is no surplus of "good black men." It works much like how the prices of food, services, and all the other things that we need to live is determined. Simply supply & demand.

  • teyana

    I am not a black male! I'd just like to add my observations of my male friends in the professional world.. We've been working for 2 years, so its safe to say we are "entry level", i agree with 1. bcoz these guys already feel that women are after them for their money!! "ummmm, what money? i know what you earn" is my response.
    I also unanimously agree with 5. In some instances, we are the first generation of professionals to come from our families whereas our white/asian counterparts were born into a line of doctors/lawyers/ engineers, etc. We still have a lot of ground to cover for us to establish ourselves in the fields and eventually create wealth and acquire that level of experience. Its good to appreciate yourself for the work you have done, but dont rest on your laurels!
    #2cents

    • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com Tristan

      Dudes claiming women are after their money is no different from women saying there are no good men left. It’s just an excuse for being single, there’s plenty of women who care less bout your 60K a year and there’s plenty of dudes who are just so happy being on top of the dating food chain.

      • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com Tristan

        aren’t*

  • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com Tristan

    Basically, but it really depends on the man and what his intentions were from the get go. Some dudes planned on becoming successful and flexing on women to make up for lost time, while others aim to build a stable life for themselves so they can later find someone to share it with. No offense to the writer but her homeboy sounds like the former

    • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com Tristan

      Re: Peter

      • Peter Parker

        Bascially.

        • Peter Parker

          Basically

  • http://www.singleblackmale.org/author/wisdomismisery/ WisdomIsMisery

    This is an accurate assessment.

  • http://stanoffewwords.wordpress.com Tristan

    There’s only a scarcity of good black men because women set up too many parameters on what one actually is. Height, weight, income, extrovert, interests, children, assets….women are lusting after the few inside the gate there’s so many decent brothas outside the gate. Everyone can’t get a doctor, lawyer, or finance guy, mechanics need love too.

    • cynicaloptmst81

      Ok, I JUST had a 31-comment exchange on a FB post with a homeboy of mine…and this was discussed in the midst of it.

      I told him that I have standards: No illegal activity (including weed smoking), no drunkenness (cause its a complete turnoff…tipsy is ok), no flings (only serious applicants need apply cause I ultimately want to be married), have a car and your own place (unless you have a GREAT reason not to), and you must be successful/be the man when it comes to something (no $ amount on that…but have a skill that you excel in and enjoy). That's it! (and no Tauruses, of course, lol) And, yes, I offer the same. Surely, THESE include a plethora of eligible men, right?!

      …and he told me I have too many standards!!!! o_O

      I didn't even include stuff like you listed. I don't get it…

      • bellatrice1

        *DeaD at no Tauruses! But Imma cosign lol
        My recent post Why Men Should Hit on Women at Church

        • Juan_Carlos

          I just read the Why Men Should Hit on Women at Church article….and I must admit, that's a very interesting proposition. Not sure I would do it because it just seems weird, but its still interesting nonetheless. #hmmm

        • bellatrice1

          [*holds up the church finger as I duck out of the pews*] Hey Juan_Carlos! Glad you checked out the article…I'd hate to get caught discussing the topic of my blog on this blog, so let's continue the convo at 30thoughts.com. I'd like to know why it seems weird to you. What's so "wrong" with asking a girl out at church?

          My recent post Why Men Should Hit on Women at Church

        • Larry

          Interesting. Like most things in life the answer more or less revolves around, "It depends". The size of the congregation may play a factor for starters. Also, I know many people don't generally actively approach people of the opposite sex at destinations where they frequent often (i.e. work, the gym, etc..) due to the fact that if things don't end well then it creates awkwardness b/c you still see them on a regular basis.

          Another note is the general fact that more women attend church than men. At first glance this should be a plus for men (and I'm not saying it isn't, lol)….but por ejemplo (for example for by non-bilingual peeps) as mentioned above let's say it doesn't work out with 3 or so women….will the man be deemed the "church player"? Sitting with a different woman every 4 months may or may not look favorably.

        • Larry

          However, all that being said, if one is secure with themselves and dusts pride aside and not care what others think then one could find a good mate at church and shouldn't feel afraid or hesitant in approaching someone in a respectful manner. The assumption is if both are mature adults looking for the same thing, but find out they aren't compatible early then it shouldn't be awkward if they go their separate ways.

        • Larry

          **Sorry, wouldn't let me post on your site…had to log into wordpress or something…don't have a login for that, lol so I just dropped it here**

        • bellatrice1

          Weird! Too bad you couldn't comment there. Your points would have definitely added to the discussion, but thanks for your insightful comments nonetheless.

          To your first points: I agree with not wanting to date someone at a place you frequent, but like you said, if you're just not compatible, and you aren't dogging these women out, there should be no problem moving on and dating others at the church.

          I don't think a guy is ever deemed a player unless he is deceitful in his dating or is just ho'in around. If you're just trying to get laid, I wouldn't suggest dating women at church because well, I'm sure you can imagine why, but if you're truly looking to find a mate and date respectfully, I see nothing wrong with dating multiple women at church, as long as they know you are dating other people and you're not being sexually irresponsible.

          From the sound of it, you've never hit on a woman at church. If that's the case, what was YOUR reasoning?? Now that the topic has been explored, would you consider it?
          My recent post Why Men Should Hit on Women at Church

      • Adonis

        I doubt it. And if you are in the 30+ crowd, you better be money as a companion. Otherwise you are in rotation.

      • Bree

        Cyn no illegal activity including weed smoking no drunkenness and of course I'm sure u expect him to be fairly mature and responsible right…..? Well that right there is too many….ijs.

        • cynicaloptmst81

          Girl, I pray you're being sarcastic, LOL!

          I refuse to believe that.

          Like I told him, people only have issues with standards/preferences when they don't meet them…

        • Bree

          "Like I told him, people only have issues with standards/preferences when they don't meet them… " This is Truth.org.
          yeah I am kinda. For some that is too much to ask, but for other it's not. I know very successful, educated, and somewhat nerdy brotha's that smoke weed and sometimes play video games still. I also know brotha's who don't smoke or drink at all ever. One things for sure, there is Somebody for Everybody. No matter what your standards are there are people out there that definitely meet them. (granted they may not live in the U.S. but ijs) lol…i kid i kid.

    • 2cool4school

      You forgot to add already got a girl.

    • Bree

      Tristan +1000. That is a cold hard truth right there.

  • FlyyLibrarian

    Let me just start off by saying this: I love black men, I really do. However, reading post like this and the post from yesterday just leave me thinking and feeling some type of way about black men all the time. Degrees, jobs, and titles don't make you a "good black man", or a "good catch" #1. Or that every black woman with degrees, a job, or fancy title wants YOU because of that, #2. That's something they don't seem to get!

    Many times Im left wishing I was gay or wondering where tha white boys at.

    Give me a thumbs down if you're mad. I don't care.

    • Adonis

      wondering where tha white boys at.

      You know, if y'all lose the weight, attitude & hide the bastard kids, I think white boys would at least give you some pink peen.

      Also, I wish you & other women would be HONEST about what make a "good" man. Cause your dating histories are suspect.

      Good day

      • FlyyLibrarian

        "You know, if y'all lose the weight, attitude & hide the bastard kids, I think white boys would at least give you some pink peen."

        This made me LOL. You're funny.

    • http://singleblackmale.org/author/wisdomismisery WisdomIsMisery

      I'll chime in here with an expansion on my previous thought. Here's the thing about the black community as a whole. We seem to want accolades for mediocre accomplishments. While I'm not sure what the equivalent term is for the "independent woman" it seems the relative man – whatever you want to label him – wants praise for, as you pointed out, obtaining "degrees, jobs, and titles." This doesn't make one independent – man or woman – or for that matter inherently a "good black man/woman." It makes one a grown an adult. A moderately achieving adult at that since you are really only doing the basics.

      To your other point about white men. This is ridiculous and hilarious. Even though I've wrote the post that, in fact, I believe, if they want to, black women should date all the white men they want. However, to prescribe that the solution all black women (or men) problem is to date someone of the opposite race is [mentally handicap] at worse, disingenuous at best. For one, the majority of black women don't date white men, so you're basically assuming something you have no experience with is a better experience than the experience you have (dating black men). That's like me saying I know sushi is disgusting despite the fact that I've never tried sushi. That's not very intelligent. Given the nature of your previous comments here, I'm sure you (specifically) were being sarcastic but I know there are a number of men and women think like this #inreallife.

      The reason black men and women want praise for doing the minimum is because as whole we are surprised when anyone of our race, man or woman, does more than the minimum. This is a symptom of the community, not the individual sexes. To pretend the ailments of the black man/woman are independent of the symptoms of the converse relationship with the black woman/man is the blind leading the blind over a cliff, BUT I guess it often has and will continue to prove easier to point fingers than to lift each other up.

      *shrug life*

      • Larry

        "The reason black men and women want praise for doing the minimum is because as whole we are surprised when anyone of our race, man or woman, does more than the minimum. This is a symptom of the community, not the individual sexes."

        Affirmation seems to be something that is overly sought after in people. The old adage of "expect nothing, be grateful for everything" doesn't seem to translate well with folks that fall into this category. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with recognition and having that affirmation that what you're doing is positive and on the right track….but when one consistently goes out of their way to let YOU know they are "this, that and the third" and looking for a pat on the back then I just can't deal.

      • Jason G

        I've had this conversation at work pretty recently. The issue is as a community we are told that success is best exhibited by degrees. More specifically careers in the legal, medicine, or finance fields. Once a man has reached one of these careers he is a successs by the black community standards. At this point his dating pool widens.

        Men are physical creatures and thus initially are more concerned with the physical attributes a woman has. Women on the other hand are looking at men to see how they can provide. Now of course there has to be an initial attraction, HOWEVER women are more likely to skip on the physical much quicker than a man would.

        • http://singleblackmale.org/author/wisdomismisery WisdomIsMisery

          Good point Jason. Also, let's take a step back here and take a view from the sky instead of from the ground. First and foremost, assuming it's the end-goal, marriage rates are down across all races. Further, the black community is really coming into it's own as far as successful generations go – granted there is still much room for improvement. While I generally hate doing this, let's take a look at the Anglo-saxon community (term used because it's purposefully more inclusive as some of you know how I feel about statistics lol). Anglos have been "successful" for years and they still continued to be the leaders in marriage rates – I think they still are but I'm too lazy to check. Of course, this is related to a myriad of factors beyond just "success," however, it clearly demonstrates that success is not related to the demise of marriage since successful people have clearly been getting married for centuries.

          I think we are simply in a state of upheaval but I would not relate this to Chicken Little tendencies of "the sky is falling." By and large, most black men and women who want to get married will get married (stats say like 75%+). Granted when they get married may not align when with when they want to be married, which to me is a separate discussion. I still maintain that if a man or woman wants a serious relationship, then they should date serious-relationship-minded men/women and not waste their time with anyone else. Folks seem to be about this "I will impose my will" on another human being life then wonder why they are in the state they are in.

        • Bree

          Great points WIM. Good take on that.

        • Bree

          "HOWEVER women are more likely to skip on the physical much quicker than a man would."
          hhhmmmm….not necessarily Jason. Women can be just as shallow as men. As short men under 5'7 how much play they get, regardless of their race, status, and wealth.

      • FlyyLibrarian

        "the majority of black women don't date white men, so you're basically assuming something you have no experience with is a better experience than the experience you have (dating black men)."

        I don't represent the majority of black women.
        I'm not assuming. This is based on actual/personal field research (dating white/non black men). I didnt have to worry about petty mess like this, who would pay on a first or fifth date, etc.
        And I was being facetious.

        *Note to self…..don't show up to ANY SBM events with a white dude.*

        : p

        • Adonis

          Mee too, but on some level, I would HATE for you to be discouraged to PERSONALLY date out, but you worry about what some faceless closeted black nationalist thinks.

          Finding love hard, so if you find it in a poor man's Channing Tatum, you'll know I'll be rooting for you.

        • http://singleblackmale.org/author/wisdomismisery WisdomIsMisery

          Perhaps I was unclear. I've dated white women and they too didn't present the same issues I often encounter when dating black women. But to say white women have no issues or relatively speaking, don't have a similar volume of issues as black women in the confines of a relationship just has not been my experience. But again, if people think the solution to all that ails their dating life can be attributed to the race of people they date, then I suggest they stop dating that race of people.

          *I wouldn't show up to an SBM event with a white girl either. Actually, if I marry a white girl I have already stated that I will leave SBM and start writing for TheFrisky. Words bond.

        • FlyyLibrarian

          Nah Plehboi.

          Up thread you suggested it was a mental handicap or disingenuous, now you’re suggesting that they stop dating a certain race if that’s what ails them?

          Which one is it?

          I love my black men.

          *Does Birdman hand rub*

        • http://singleblackmale.org/author/wisdomismisery WisdomIsMisery

          Oh, in my humble opinion, it is very [mentally handicap]. lol At the same time, it is a very controllable situation. If a woman genuinely believes X causes all her problems (in this case black men), then I encourage her to stop doing whatever X is.

          I think most black women, if they're keeping it real, don't give up dating black men because at the end of the day they know they want to be with a black man. Admitting this, as you have done, isn't a bad thing. It isn't a weakness. It isn't anything really. As a black woman in the United States of America, saying you prefer to be with a black man is, in my eyes, perfectly reasonable. To be clear, most black men want to be with black women as well. Despite all the chest-poking-out rhetoric on-line and in the blogs, statistically, black men and women are still dealing with each other in droves on a daily basis and in fact, our asses are marrying each other's so called untolerable asses at a rate of 9 out of 10. lol

          You admitted you were being facetious up thread and I took it as such from jump based on your prior style of comments comments. I only chose to speak up here because I know a number of people (men/women) really think #inreallife as you were joking #infakelife.

      • BlueSteele

        "The reason black men and women want praise for doing the minimum is because as whole we are surprised when anyone of our race, man or woman, does more than the minimum. This is a symptom of the community, not the individual sexes."

        This deserves it's own post, no lie.

      • RPrice

        That comment gets the tambourine.

      • Bree

        Slow Clap and Standing Ovation WIM. 100 %Truth.org.
        "The reason black men and women want praise for doing the minimum is because as whole we are surprised when anyone of our race, man or woman, does more than the minimum. This is a symptom of the community, not the individual sexes."
        This is another post in and of itself. So very true and sad, very sad.

  • Jason G

    Black men who are "successful" are largely emboldened by their perceived success and demand more and more out of women, they date. This leads to the affirmation of #3 above. Like Chris Rock said men don't go backwards physically.

    For #4 I think this holds true more than any other point made. I know guys who have 5 different girls on rotation at any given time. These girls know that they're not the only one in his life, but they're all competing because in the end they want that long-term relationship and then a marriage. As a result men are less likely to settle down because really why stay with one, when you can have 5. ESPECIALLY when you have no desire to just stay with one person.

    In the end I do think that professional black women do have an uphill battle in the dating area. However if I can give one bit of advice it is that if a man really wants you, he'll purusue you. And there won't be anything that can stop him. I'm not saying play games, but show your worth, and if he won't stick around to pursue you then keep it moving.

    • SingLikeSassy

      "if a man really wants you, he'll pursue you." <–this, right here is thetruth.com. That's what my Grandma told me (if a man wants you, he will MAKE a way) and life has taught me. When a man has wants me, I am never unclear about his intentions.

      • cynicaloptmst81

        Pursuit alone doesn't tell you whether or not the guys intentions are good or bad though, lol.

        Ijs…

        • SingLikeSassy

          But wouldn't you rather spend your time shuffling through dudes that *are* interested and separating the wheat from the chafe, than wasting time running after those who aren't interested?

        • cynicaloptmst81

          Oh, absolutely! LOL!

          Just saying there's still some investigating that needs to be done after that…

        • Furious Styles

          “Pursuit alone doesn’t tell you whether or not the guys intentions are good or bad though, lol”
          +1000 Please run back and tell all your sistren. First of all, it’s Grandma’s advice. I love Grandmas, but times have changed. Women pursuing is not THE answer, but why limit your pool to the few guys with the balls to start and carry a conversation with a stranger?

        • felicity

          That is very true, but that is when discernment comes to play. If a guy's intentions aren't good (or just sexually orientated), then you'll know by his actions…So it stills holds true. The right guy will do the pursuing.

      • AfterMath

        I was saying this the other day to somebody's comments. This doesn't fit everybody. And even if it was true, what do you call "pursue"? Basically, we all know the game is rigged against shy & introverted guys. Its nothing surprising about that.
        My recent post Shade The Cells Puzzle

  • Jason G

    So yeah it does suck for professional black females but I can't say as a black lawyer that the current state of male to female relationsihps doesn't hurt lol

    • Bree

      Based on what men have told me the problem with the professional and successful black females is either their attitudes, or that they try to rush them into relationships and the alter way too quickly.
      As a black lawyer if u date successful and professional black women like yourself do u concur Jason?

  • http://inanimatethoughts.blogspot.com Animate

    This is a joke right?

    1. Successful black men have their guard up: This is the way of life. Some people will not have your best interest in mind. With relationships, you win some, you lose some. If you keep losing you will have your guard up successful or not.

    2. Successful black men underestimate the intangibles: Believe it or not there is a short list that every man that wants a relationship has. Those are his intangibles. Success will not change those .

    3. Successful black men have less patience for me women bullshit: How is this bad? I'm not going to sit around and wait for you to act right after giving you several chances.

    4. They don’t feel overwhelming pressure to settle down: Absolutely NO ONE should feel pressure to get married. If you don't want to get married society should not change that. Marriage is not eveyrone's end game or desire.

    5. Successful black men confuse mediocrity with greatness: I'll concede a little on this one. i know guys that think they are a hot commodity and play a game with the rules in their favor. Not 100% though
    .
    6. Successful black men sell themselves short: No, just no.

    My recent post Murci, Murci Me

    • Dr. J

      Generalizations are typically bad, but the rebuttals are typically worse.

      I file this under, "Saying that all Black men are in jail is wrong, but acting like you don't know any Black men who are in jail is wrong as hell."

      Just my personal reply to what you said:
      1) I don't think that's a good idea. If you have your guard up, you're likely to punish the good girl for what the bad girl did. This isn't just relationships but life too. 2) We all know some successful black men who want a whole bunch of stuff that in the end don't really matter. 3) Relationships are about finding the person who you will put up with their ish and they will put up with yours too. It's a way of life. 4) Well… I think it's a problem when people put more energy into something that will last 20-30 years like a job over something that could last potentially 50-60 years. IMHO. 5) Yeah… we agree on that. 6) Yes, they do. I have had moments when I was dating a girl and told myself I ain't want to be uppity and so I shouldn't have ridiculous standards. UNTIL I realized something, her lack of accomplishments and "stuff" in her life caused serious problems in her mental psyche. She just didn't find things like ambition and advanced education to be important, now how would I marry someone like that and have kids? However, it's mad successful black men who are worried about selling out and they sell themselves short. In addition, we ALL be putting up with some ish that we just shouldn't have to put up with.

  • kwazigirl

    The future of our black families will eventually pay the price for the BM's arrogance.Fatherless children and desperate mothers will continue to run rampant in our communities even among us "educated and successful" blacks. We need to figure out what matters in life in the end. Running through broads gets old after a while (i suspect) as dating guys who's only motivation is to try to game me out my drawls is to me. Men seem to snicker at women for wanting a stable guy to build a family with while she's still young and fertile, I dont get the joke. Either way the man playiing games w/ women due to their self-percieved "dopeness" will be the old dudes in the club w/ a sweatsuit on and gold chains hitting on 20 yr olds during homecoming while their more "mature" friends are watching their kids graduate for college and celebrating their wedding anniversaries.

    • http://twitter.com/undefined @undefined

      "The future of our black families will eventually pay the price for the BM's arrogance."

      Welp.

    • BigSister

      I agree with you in part Kwazigirl. Future black families will suffer also because women are sleeping with multiple men. The men out here who do settle down, don't do it with women they don't respect. BW , we need to stop giving away our power and keep our legs closed.

    • Adonis

      @Kwazi

      The future of our black families will eventually pay the price for the BM's arrogance.

      Please sit down somewhere. You gave your box up to negroes (regardless of personal success) who didn't see you as a wife, and you are giving sh*t to bros. who have nothing to do with your situation.

      When a beautiful BW leverages her s3xual power to get the best man she fancies, it's liberation. Even though her mating choices are suspect & her child doesn't have proper male support.

      If a successful BM decides to leverage his sexual power and he's "arrogant". Jam a icepick in your retina. And deal with man that loves you, not a man you are not in the same league as him.

  • cynicaloptmst81

    The main concern for single men in my world is…encountering "good women" that seem more interested in getting married than finding (or making sure you've found) the right life partner. Are you really into "me"…or am I just "good enough to marry"?

    • slimjackson

      I feel like there's a blog post about this somewhere in our archives. Unfortunately, I'm too lazy to go find it and share it.
      My recent post 6 Ways the Black Male Scarcity Myth Hurts Men

      • Bree

        There absolutely is a blog post about this somewhere in your archives. Unfortunately I'm too busy to go and find it and link it in a comment. *kanye shrugs*

  • SingLikeSassy

    (I'm about to mix metaphors here…)

    Some folks think they deserve NBA All-star status, when they have junior high school basketball team skills. I'd say that everybody should play the hand they are dealt as skillfully as they can.

  • bellatrice1

    Great well-written, thoughtful post. Most of what I would have written has already been said. All I will add is a further explanation of why #3 is bad since some men on the thread don't get it.

    "Successful black men have less patience for me women's bullshit" – Bullshit happens.
    EVERYONE puts up with some amount of BS in a long-term relationship. To think that you will have a relationship where you and your partner never disagree or that you will never get on each other's nerves is asinine. When you perceive that you have a plethora of options, sticking it out and going the distance with someone you care about becomes more of a chore and it is less daunting to simply move on and date others. This usually sparks "the one that got away" syndrome in men, in general, because they leave the woman they had thinking they would find someone with less issues or someone "seemingly perfect," but they never do.

    There's a young, successful black man who fits the mold described in the article. He said recently his 50+ year old father, who has never been married, told him to find a woman who has great qualities, but who has less favorable qualities that he can at least tolerate b/c you will spend your whole life looking for the perfect woman (as he has) and she doesn't exist. His dad's old and alone, and still clubbing. This is the best advice for young men AND women. Nobody's perfect!

  • Juan_Carlos

    This is real talk!

  • morganthewriter

    Very good post; I learned a lot from reading this one!

    It made me think more about myself, and I'm not even successful … yet.
    My recent post The IQ Myth and its Fascist origins – Just how Intelligent are You?

  • AfterMath

    I'd probably go with the opposite of #5 – basically that a lot of successful people are so busy chasing success that its hard to enter into a relationship with them. I mean, how's that quote go? "You lose a lot of money chasing women, but you'll never lose women chasing money". Not really true because its hard to put your all into a relationship if you're putting your all into finishing law school, or finishing grad school, or passing the bar, or getting tenure, or starting a business, or making that business profit, etc.

    I really think that for a lot of successful people that's all they really know. If some kind of celebrity or fame comes with it then cool, but its not like because they're a successful accountant, they'll all of a sudden be given the Holy Grail of game. They're probably still the guy who goes unnoticed at the happy hour, or who comes up to you with some corny statement that makes you want to just laugh at him or feel sorry for him.

    And like WIM was saying earlier about marriage rates, this kinda goes across races (and really across sexes). Sometimes its not til they hit 35 or 40 or 45 that they realize that there's a world outside of their career / passion and decide to settle down and get married and all that other stuff. Its amazing how many friends I have who are in their 40s and just got married to their first wife and had their first kid.
    My recent post Shade The Cells Puzzle

    • Adonis

      I really think that for a lot of successful people that's all they really know. If some kind of celebrity or fame comes with it then cool, but its not like because they're a successful accountant, they'll all of a sudden be given the Holy Grail of game. They're probably still the guy who goes unnoticed at the happy hour, or who comes up to you with some corny statement that makes you want to just laugh at him or feel sorry for him.

      That paragraph was HOT FIRE

  • Sith King Jordan

    i probably agree with 1,5,6. however, i don't consider myself a 'succesful' black male. i'm just a regular cat walking my path. but i do wonder if i ever become a 'success', whether females will see the suit, or the soul within the suit.however, at the same time, i get it. as a male, part of my job is to be the provider for my family, so i have to show that i can be a capable provider to my future wife. perhaps its just that the box that i have to fit in, needs to be expanded just a little.

    • AfterMath

      Your terminology is funny to me because you use the word "suit". You think Mark Zuckerberg defines success by that? One of the things I'd want in a "successful" career is to be able to wear my blue jeans and a hoodie to work. But I know that when I'm wearing that, people – Black people and White people – automatically want to associate it with me being a thug or having nothing going for me instead of me having a career similar to a computer programmer, an engineer, or a college professor.
      My recent post Shade The Cells Puzzle

      • http://twitter.com/kjnetic sith king Jordan

        By”suit”, i meant the outer trappings of sides that the public can see, not necessarily and actual suit that someone like David Stern wears.

        I feel you tho, I’d rather wear my Avengers hoodie than a 3 piece suit

  • Bree

    SBM I believe did a post on this at one time. In a nutshell this "myth"/truth works in favor of black men.
    There actually is some truth to this myth. Compared to Asian, Indian, and white men who are successful, handsome/attractive, able to provide for their families and are responsible and mature for the most part and act like grown azz men, and are ready willing and able to marry a woman in a yr or 2, (I believe this is what most women define as a good man) there really aren't many black men who are fit the description of what many women would define as a "good man." Let me qualify my statement by saying this – No not all black men are "players" unwilling to commit, much less get married and are more interested in video games, chillin with their boys and drinking and smoking and hanging out than women, but by comparison there are a lot more black men that fit this description and are true to this "stereotype" than men of any other race. Much as we may not like to think that it's true, it is. I know because I personally know and have met and dated men of other races and ethnicities.

  • Bree

    I agree with Patia's observations. I think what needs to be discussed and addressed at this point is when will brotha's be more willing to meet the needs of sista's? When will we have more black men that act more like grown, mature, responsible men? When will more brotha's aspire and desire to be "good black men."
    One observation I notice amongst many, not all, but many black men is that no matter how successful, intelligent, educated, upwardly mobile, and worldly they are they are still either not likely to or will marry at a much much slower rate than men of other races and ethnicities, (even African men).
    I wonder is it brotha's inability to commit for whatever reasons, or is it black women. Are more black women non marriage material than any other race and culture of women? I think I'm going to start asking some brotha's "Are we (sista's) really that bad?"

    • Peter Parker

      Bree,
      No black women are definitely marriage material and I know one day I will marry a sista. The thing is, from what I noticed living in DC, most black women want to rush things and not get to know a brother. Speaking personally, I am involved in alot of things outside of work (community activities and other professional activities), so if I am dating someone we may only be able to go out atleast once or twice a week. It just seems like so many black women want to jump into a relationship after like a month even though we really haven’t interacted enough. I have even had women tell me there is a 30 day rule that if a guy doesn’t say he interested within this time period, move on to the next. I am like really?? So for me, I have many of my boys in happy marriages, but the one key component that makes their relationships good is the fact they were all friends first. They really got to know each other inside and out. So I would tell sistas, stop pushing us into wanting to be in a relationship after 4 weeks and actually get to know. Know my likes and dislikes and go from there.

      • Bree

        I totally feel you Peter. I live in MD, but I'm from Philly and all I can do is smdh at some folks ways here.

  • Jerm

    If a guy isn't interested in getting married, does that mean he's not "grown up?" A lot of men nowadays don't see the value in marriage, myself included. If you're at least a college educated black man in your late 20's or 30's that probably has a good amount of disposable income and has no problem attracting women of any race, why get married? Especially if you know a co-worker, family member, friend, or whoever that went through a terrible divorce. There are TONS of horror stories out there of dudes that have been financially ruined and can't even see their kids because they married the wrong woman.

    I'm in my late 20's and recently moved in with my brother and his family while I get adjusted to this new city. He's ten years older than me has two kids with his wife the he's been married for 15 years. They hit a rocky patch a couple of years ago which almost broke the two of them up but they eventually were able to patch things up. When I asked him what changed, he said not much had changed, but he couldn't bare to have to put up with the BS that could come with having some other dude raise his sons during their teenage years, so he stuck around. There's still a high likelihood that they'll end the marriage after both kids are in college.

    So, the reason for the drop in marriage across all races is there's no point to it UNLESS you want to have children.

  • Bree

    meant to say Ask.

  • Bree

    No not saying that just because a man doesn't want to get married means he is not a grown up. However marriage and kids are a hell of a lot of responsibility. Most will say those are the two biggest responsibilities you will ever have in life. Especially for men. As a husband ur responsible for the livelyhood of both your wife and kids. Your obligated to protect and provide for both ur spouse and children.
    Obviously it takes a certain level of maturity and unselfishness to be able to do this and do it well. A lot of men who don't want to commit will say it's because they want to have their freedom and don't want the responsibility of being a husband and/or father. Even if a man has that level of maturity and unselfishness and he may be a perfectly good husband and father if he doesn't want to be then everything else is irrelevant.

  • Bree

    I compare Americans with other cultures and ethnicities because there truly is a difference. Granted that difference is in large part due to the way of life in other cultures but there is a difference.
    I wouldn't go so far as to say that white men are willing to marry a woman faster and more often than black men because I know white guys who are players, azzholes, and immature and irresponsible too. I know white men who are deadbeat dads too. I know white women going thru child support issues with their ex's just like black women. However, this doesn't happen half as much with other cultures. It's not happening half as much in the Asian and Indian culture. They are raised and reared to get degrees and education, good jobs and marry fairly soon. The sooner the better. If anything they are looked down upon in their society if they aren't married with children at a fairly young age. Hispanics and Latino's may also not have the degrees, education, and pay comparable to white people. However, they do tend to stay in long term relationships and marry and have kids fairly young.

  • Bree

    My comments and opinions on this are based on the people I know from other cultures and ethnicities and what they tell me and what I see.
    Granted other cultures living in America are more "americanized" to a degree, however in their own countries and even in America they tend to stick to their traditions and culture for the most part.

  • SweetSass

    How can we call a man "successful" if he is only successful in one area of his life?

    Yes, he has money…

    But what about raising beautiful children?
    What about being a paragon of the community?
    What about legacy?

    I don't consider having an admirable job the extent of "success"…

    • http://twitter.com/undefined @undefined

      You are absolutely right about that but keep in mind that we live in a materialistic society though…

      • http://twitter.com/SecretSweetLady @SecretSweetLady

        well then the beautiful children argument fits right in….

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  • http://mckinneyzmbz.bravejournal.com nj real estate

    There is definately a great deal to find out about this issue.
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