Dear CRF: What’s Race Got To Do With It?

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Dear CRF:

“Recently I decided to give interracial dating a chance. In the past, I have only dated black men, but I believe that good men can be found in all races. So far I’ve been on 4 dates with a white man and things seem to be progressing well. He’s funny, intelligent and a gentleman. We haven’t really spoken about race, but it’s on the back of my mind. I wonder and worry, because I need to be with a man that has some level of consciousness about my experiences as a black woman. For the ladies and gentleman who have white significant others, are they racially conscious? How did you know? Do you feel understood when you talk to them about race-related situations?”

CRF Response:

First, please allow me to applaud you for being brave enough to step outside of your comfort zone.  While we have progressed somewhat as a society, race is still a topic that can be volatile, especially among those who are not willing to have an open mind.  With that said, I agree with your comment that good men are available, no matter what race he is.  If you see that this man you are dating has potential, then it might be in your best interest to tell him what you are thinking and how you feel about the subject of race to see if there is some synergy between you.  It sounds as though that it is important to you that he truly understands your experiences as a black woman, so if he really respects you, not only will he actively listen but he will be responsive in a mature and adult fashion.  He does not have to understand everything, but if he can display a level of sensitivity about the subject, then you have a good foundation on which to build upon.  Good luck!

Kevin C. Boyce- Common Ground Relationship Coaching

 

 

 

 

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4 comments
yoshihenry
yoshihenry

I just wanted you to know that I had the same issue when I started dating the man I am with. I did bring it up with him. Although he had no first hand knowledge, he was willing to learn and did a great deal of research on his own and had his own questions. If this man cares about you, he will care about what matters to you. My man and I have had several conversations concerning race. It was weird to me that he just didn't 'see' our racial differences. To him we are just two people who happen to love each other and that's really what its about.

yoshihenry
yoshihenry

I just wanted you to know that I had the same issue when I started dating the man I am with. I did bring it up with him. Although he had no first hand knowledge, he was willing to learn and did a great deal of research on his own and had his own questions. If this man cares about you, he will care about what matters to you. My man and I have had several conversations concerning race. It was weird to me that he just didn't 'see' our racial differences. To him we are just two people who happen to love each other and that's really what its about.

JayNoonaYeppo
JayNoonaYeppo

Congrats on meeting a gentleman! I agree with Kevin: express your concern to your partner. Ask him what he thinks about Paula Deen for example as an easy way to break the ice and just start talking about race relations. I think it'll be appropriate to have such a conversation with any person you date even a black man because being the same ethnicity doesn't mean your views will converge. Be comfortable discussing your identity/concerns with your partner! That's one the best things about being with someone: having an understanding and enlightened sounding board.

JayNoonaYeppo
JayNoonaYeppo

Congrats on meeting a gentleman! I agree with Kevin: express your concern to your partner. Ask him what he thinks about Paula Deen for example as an easy way to break the ice and just start talking about race relations. I think it'll be appropriate to have such a conversation with any person you date even a black man because being the same ethnicity doesn't mean your views will converge. Be comfortable discussing your identity/concerns with your partner! That's one the best things about being with someone: having an understanding and enlightened sounding board.

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