Dear David, enough of the self-hate

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It was a rainy Saturday evening, I was at the Pergola bar in Paddington for my cousin’s birthday celebration, and making my way to the loo when a black guy approached me.

‘Hey what’s your name?’.

‘Lola’.

‘I want to take you out’ (straight to the point).

‘Hmmm, what’s your name?’.

‘David – I actually don’t usually ask black girls out, but you look amazing and I’m very attracted to you.’

‘Oh, why don’t you usually ask black girls out?’ (the curiosity in me asked, but half didn’t want to hear the answer…..)

‘Because of my sister, she has a lot of pride and also I’m not usually that attracted to them.’

I was stunned, and tried to break down the two statements he’d just made.

  • Firstly, so David’s sister (who I know nothing about) was in his mind a reflection of all black girls; and
  • Secondly, black girls in his opinion are usually unattractive, bar a couple of exceptions.

I don’t want to focus too much on the second statement because attraction is subjective and who we’re naturally attracted to shouldn’t be policed in my opinion. However, if you find people of your race completely unattractive I do wonder if that’s an indication of you finding yourself unattractive. Also in my opinion, to completely rule out your own race in terms of attraction suggests potential underlying self-hate and identity issues.

Or maybe you just want someone who is opposite to you, as they say opposites attract? I don’t know…

Which is why I didn’t address the attraction comment David made, if you say you’re not usually attracted to black girls, that’s your business. But I did address the comment he made about his sister.

‘What do you mean by your sister has too much pride’ ‘Not all black girls are the same as your sister, you shouldn’t tar us all with the same brush’ Also I’m sure you love your sister, so why would you talk about her in that negative light?’

David was pretty tipsy and chuckled at my comments, I sighed internally and could tell we weren’t going to have a logical, reasonable and intelligent conversation – also the loud thumping music in the bar was an added barrier.

‘But I’ve been with black girls before (sexually for those of you wondering), but just don’t usually date them, anyway I like you, you caught my attention and I really want to take you out.’

Wow lucky me, I thought in my head. I guess I should have felt fortunate that David was being flexible with his approach of not usually dating black girls – what a compliment that a black guy wanted to take me out! I felt close to laughing out loud at the whole scenario.

I was bursting for the loo and said so, luckily David’s phone was dead and so he asked me to take his number, I took it so I could cut the conversation short and quickly get to the loo, but definitely won’t be getting in touch.

I explained the story to my cousin and he looked so disappointed and shook his head, he didn’t have any words and couldn’t believe it, but I could believe it, because we black women know there’s a fair share of David’s out there, who think exactly as he does and happily express it, as explained in an earlier post Dear Black Queen.

David didn’t seem to understand the magnitude of the statements he’d made, he didn’t seem to realise that his comments were pretty ignorant and disrespectful, and most of all he didn’t seem to realise the self-hate he was exposing.

David has a black sister (there may well be more more than the one he mentioned), a black mother, a black grandmother, black aunts, black female cousins etc., yet sees black females in such a negative light. For him to make comments like this about black women in spite of being surrounded by black female family members who are probably loving and amazing women, shows how little he thinks not of black women, but himself.

Think of the last time you heard a white man say he doesn’t like white women because they remind him of his sister? Or the last time you heard an Asian, Jew or Arab man say such a thing? To talk down on the females of your race indicates you’re not proud of your race and who you are, that’s my opinion – I said what I said. Who taught you to hate yourself from the top of your head to the soles of your feet? Who taught you to hate your own kind? Who taught you to hate the race that you belong to so much so that you don’t want to be around each other?Malcolm X

Obviously no race is perfect and as human beings we are flawed, and to complain about specific things and people isn’t an issue, but to make sweeping statements, generalise and put all black women under the same category is problematic.

Ask yourself this – if you don’t respect black females, your racial counterparts, the females who may already have given birth to black children (i.e. your mother), some who will give birth to future black children (i.e. your sister), do you respect yourself and do you respect your race? If you don’t respect your race, how can you expect other races to respect your race? How can you complain about white privilege, white supremacy, discrimination and prejudice if you’re not contributing anything positive and uplifting your own race?

To David and all the other guys who think the way he does, imagine if you have a black daughter, imagine a scenario where she’s 25 (minding her own business) a black guy approaches her in a bar, and says to her I don’t usually date black girls because they remind me of my sister who has too much pride – would it maybe feel a bit different then, or would that be ok?

Come on, enough of the self-hate, enough is enough.

Lola I

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