Why Do We Carry The Burden? Black Women and IR Dating

23.2.15 ShaSha LaPerf 24 Comments

I seriously considered giving up my blog this week. Not because I was tired of it or because I'm too busy or too lazy to keep it up. LOL well okay the last two reasons aren't too far from the truth. But rather because I wondered if I was being a hypocrite.

Let me explain. Recently a friend of mine posted an article about interracial dating. She's been doing online dating on and off for the past year and the majority of what she posts on her FB page is often relationship-based articles. This particular article talks about how black women are "warming up" to the idea of IR dating. After reading the article I found myself pretty annoyed. I'm not sure if my annoyance is just an overreaction/irrational or not. I'll let y'all decide.

What bugged me wasn't so much what was in the article. It’s that fact that there is yet another article like this. It seems like every few months there are articles or studies that constantly remind Black women that we're shit especially when it comes to dating. It's so sad and pitiful that Black women are single and not getting married. The solution? Be open-minded and date non-Black men!

And this shit is pissing me off.

Because it's always on Black women to do the work. Whether it's IR dating or dating Black men, it's on us to change who we are, the way we think, and make the first move. Why is everything put on us? 

Let me get back to IR dating here, because it was an IR relationships and online dating article that brought about my annoyance. Paraphrasing here, but the article basically says Black women are finally warming up to IR dating. And more women are joining IR dating sites. Yet the article fails to note the number of non-Black men looking to meeting Black women on these sites. And this is just one of the things that bothers me about these type of articles. A few other things make my blood boil too and I needed the power of the glorious Taraji P Henson's to get through this post.

There’s No Focus on Why Non-Black Men Don’t Date Black Women

So let's go back to the article. It said that Black women aren't so open to IR dating, but recently have been giving it a shot. However there have been plenty of Black women that have been open to IR dating all along. What's really missing from these kinds articles are the voices of non-Black men. We're all familiar with the OK Cupid study about how race affects your responses. This isn't the first "Black women are at the bottom" article, but it's probably the most famous one. Buzzfeed also posted a video last year of IR dating. Why is there no information about WHY there are less responses? We're never even given real reasons as to why some men aren't responding to black women. Black women are being told we need to be open to IR dating, and at the same time we’re being told no matter what we do, we’re not going to get noticed anyway. Now there are plenty of Black women that choose not to go the IR route and if that's for them, then that's for them. They give many reasons why they don’t do IR dating. Hell there are plenty of Black women that gives reasons to why they date IR. Whether you may believe their answers or not, they provide answers. However why aren’t we getting the same thing from men?

Many Black reality TV Shows have featured non-Black men. We all know Pepa hooked up with Tom Lo on her  Let's Talk About Pep show. Chili from (best girl froup ever) TLC and Melyssa Ford appeared on Millionaire Matchmaker and were both open to dating White men. Yet how far have Black women gotten on The Bachelor? Hell we haven’t even had a Black Bachelorette! So many IR dating sites are telling Black women that non-Black men love us. We see all these pictures of happy couples, children, marriages, love. We read these stories of how they met and all the things he's does for his beautiful Black wife. We see these YouTube videos of everyone in love. And all these videos of how Black women love non-Black men. But we rarely see this coming from men themselves, the majority of these things are being posted by Black women and the response is coming from Black women. Sure you can find some guys in FB groups and there are many non-Black men offline that don't have any issues getting to know Black women. You might see one or two YouTube videos of guys declaring their love. However, there's a definitely a gap in the amount of love Black women display for non-Black men compare to non-Black men doing the same for women. Yet it’s Black women that need to be open about IR dating?

Black Woman Need to Change Everything; Non-Black Men Get to Stay the Same

Despite the fact that Black women have been given very few clear answer as to why non-Black men want to date them, all the weight is put on Black women for this happening. Some guys just assume that Black women won't date them so they don't put effort into talking to us. So it's up to us to go and talk to them. Some men think Black women are loud and ghetto and militant. So it's up to us to be quiet, put a smile on our faces, and not rock the boat. No men in your area? Pack your shit up and move! Stay away from Black women that act out because the men will think you all act that way.

Everything is our fault.

And that's bullshit. Look I totally get that when you should so some self-reflection when you constantly find yourself alone when you don't want to be. But at some point, there need to be effort on the part of both parties. It's not your fault that some guy decides he doesn't want to date Black women because he's seen how he acts on The Real Housewives of Atlanta. It's his fault for not having enough fucking common sense to know that not Black women are alike. It's not your fault some guys decide not to swipe our way on Tinder because he just assumes you don't date non-Black men. It's his fault for not having the balls to just see what would happen. Non-Black men need to put just as much effort into getting to know Black women as real, individual people as we're expected to do for them.

The Fetishization of Black Woman is Ignored

Black women are getting the least amount responses on online dating. Okay we get that. But can we please talk about the type of responses we do get? Many of these Black women and IR dating articles glaze over the amount of fetishization black women receive when they are online as well. We're "sexy ebony bunnies" with "big black asses." We're "exotic beauties" that and guys want to know if we "taste like chocolate" on the inside.

Last year  Paige Tutt did an experiment where she posted different profiles of herself with different looks. She did this experience after reading of another woman who did a similar experiment. At one point, both women decide to have "sexy" photos and while the first woman received rather gross comments, Tutt received many gross comments that added her race to it:

From Tutt's article

Vanessa Willoughby had a few stories of online dating as so does Zeba Blay over at XOJane. But these stories are getting buried under the "Black women are so sad and single!" narrative. I guess black woman are just supposed to be so excited that someone is paying attention to us that we should just take this shit as a compliment.

So glad to get that off my chest! Look folks, this isn't about wanting validation from non-Black men. Hell this isn't about validation from any men period. This isn't about discouraging IR dating. This is about the fact that people need to stop crapping all over Black women. This is about people putting more effort into showing both sides here. We want to think IR dating isn't complex, and that it's so easy to go out there and find yourself a non-Black man. But given the fact that we're even still talking about IR dating as thing in 2015 means that there's still a lot of dissection that's happening. But there needs stop pretending like it's just on the shoulders of Black women alone to deal with it. 

But it leads me to what I mentioned earlier when I thought about quitting my blog and that I felt like a hypocrite. When I write the posts about IR dating, I try to balance things out. I try to focus on the positives and negatives. I don't want to paint Asian men as kings or as villains. But I'm almost always writing from the perspective of being a woman. And now I'm wondering if maybe I myself am adding to this. I've written these posts about dating Asian men and offer suggestions for what Black woman should do when handling them. I'm not sure. When I wrote my last dating Asian guys post, I initially wanted to write it to Asian men. Because I felt like Black women should already know these things and it was the men that needed to hear it. But I also know that most of my readers are women, so I suppose it was a bit of a cop out for me to write it to them. But does that mean I'm expecting Black women to still be the ones paying attention to what the men are doing instead of asking the men to do the same? I also didn't want to come off like I was begging men to do things for us. 

Of course I'm not giving up my blog. I will admit I am much slower at dealing with it these days, but I'm not giving it up. Sigh, this is a lot of think about. Guess I'm just frustrated that yet again Black women are put in these positions. Going to have a glass of wine now. 


  1. Very good article. I am an admin for such a page and group that you address. Our main goal is to encourage BW and nonblack men to expand their dating ootions. Quality and character matter first and foremost. Everything else is subject to that persons preference. You are correct, even with the best intention, BW still do the heavy lifting in relationships. Bravo. Well done

  2. Why is everything put on us?
    Misogyny and Misognoir
    There is a huge billion dollar industry built on making women and black women in particular feel bad about ourselves. Women's magazines and sites are filled with articles on how women need to change themselves to get and keep a man.

  3. I'm an Asian Male and I love black women. I see quite a few youtube videos of Asian men who feel the same. In all honesty, very few Asian men would ever start a blog saying they specifically focus on dating certain race. But I know Ranier at ranierm.wordpress.com is Asian and talks quite a bit about AMBF relationships as he is one himself. I will say this for most Asian Men I know, they do prefer slim, petite girls. Two of my buddies (Chinese and Filipino) were working hard on this girl the other night from Jamaica 5'3, not more than 110 lbs. My Chinese buddy eventually got her number

    1. When you say "for most asian men i know, they do prefer slim, petite girls" in this context, it implies that you and maybe your friends don't think that black women can be slim and petite. Obviously, that's not true, since your friends were interested in the slim, petite Jamaican woman. So liking slim, petite girls doesn't account for a lack of interest in black women... but assuming that most black women are not slim and petite would.

    2. I read it more as Asian men prefer women who are slim and petite regardless of race (Ranier actually did a post on this). Some women who show interest may not match that description.

    3. how about Asian men work on being more fit, muscular to fit all kind of races, as the height can be due to the genes ?????????????? By the way, I am tall fit and I got a lot of attention from Asian guys, some will spy me, some will try to talk to me, but most of the "petit" feel emasculate. BUT IT IS THE SAME IN ALL RACES, MEN LIKE TO BE DOMINANT, TO MAN UP

    4. Sorry for my novel, but this is a huge issue (pun intended). I'm a Black woman so I understand why Black women feel sensitive at hearing these comments about our weight. Women want to feel desired and beautiful, so hearing that you aren't perceived that way by men you like is painful.

      It used to really bother me to hear "We only like thin women" because when I see an AMWW couple, she is almost always overweight and usually facially nothing to write home about. Meanwhile her Asian partner is walking around with his chest poked out like he is parading around Aphrodite on his arm. So the standard is not being fairly applied.

      However, one of the things that I do like about AMBW is that when genuine relationships do form, it isn't about social climbing and "showing them!!!" but rather about two people loving each other for the value they see in one another. An Asian guy with a fat White woman is not choosing her for her beauty. Her precious precious whiteness is what he values. Sticking it to the White men and Asian women who have pissed on him since birth is what he wants. I cannot offer that at any size. Also, I want a man to respect and love me as a human being, not a trophy. So it's really apples and oranges.

      Is it fair that Asian men drool over a White woman who looks like 4 Hefty bags full of creamed corn, while holding us to a higher standard? Not by a mile. But life isn't fair. The men who ask me out and get shot down because their chest hair turns my stomach feel it isn't fair. I'm still not going to go out with them. There's a lot of unfairness in this world. No need to cry about it.

      Also, the perception of body size is divergent on both sides. Part of that is bias. A non-Black woman who wears my exact same size will be seen to be more trim and toned than I am by a person who has the (empirically supported) idea that Black women are usually fat in their minds. Again, not fair. Life is not fair.

      Another thing is that our perceptions are formed by our surroundings. So if you spend a lot of time around larger people, your idea of what fat is will change to something bigger. If you grew up around tiny waif Asian girls, then a stripped down skeleton look seems "average" or "normal" to you. Consequently, some Black women feel they are not fat but they are using a different rubric to evaluate themselves than Asian men are using to evaluate them. Painful, yes, but that's reality for you.

    5. Thanks to all of you for making interesting and thought-provoking points on an under-discussed topic.

      I'm a white woman dating an Asian man. Before we started dating, my boyfriend dated women of all different types, including both black and white women, some petite and some tall and more voluptuous. Whenever someone asks about his dating preferences, he always says, "I like attractive people"; and, not just in appearance, but personality, as well. He says that often, when he would ask a non-Asian woman out, he would be told, "Oh, sorry. I don't date Asians". Ok, am I the only one who thinks this is egregious?!? Even if you prefer not to date outside of your race, that seems just rude! Imagine for a moment if someone were referring to another race - "I don't date white men" or "I don't date black women"; I would be absolutely mortified that someone could be so blatantly racist! Am I completely off base here?

      Great blog! Love the comments, too!

  4. Well for one I hope that there is never a black Bachelor or Bachelorette! The show is a joke. Honestly I can't think of many men who would do blogs about liking certain types of women or any woman. And I have noticed that mostly black women are the ones who do it. I'm sure there are other races of women out there that might, but mostly its black. And most men (I said most) have always been open to dating outside their race. They just didn't feel the need to blog about it. I think black women get too carried away doing blogs about it personally. I do feel like they could ask men as to why they do not approach black women on dating sites, but these women have to be prepared for the answers that might come. The women might not like the answers. People assume they aren't chosen because of race.

    And black women spend too much time putting their business in the street. That is one reason you see all those youtube videos and blogs.

    And I do not think women need to change for a man. I think you just have to date men that like you for you. And that man may not match who you want.

    1. Haha, I hate the Bachelor/Bachelorette too! But it's true - there's no point on even rooting for the black girl on a dating show because she'll be out ASAP.

      I feel like black women are the ones mainly blogging about IR relationships, but that might be because I'm a black woman and I seek those blogs out. This weekend, I plan on exploring and seeing if I can find blogs and articles from other women of color, in addition to men talking about IR dating. I don't want to assume that it's just black women or mostly black women talking about it.

      I have to disagree with you when you say that black women spend too much time putting their business in the street, especially if you're talking about YouTube videos and blogs. First, I think it's up to people whether they want to talk about personal things on the internet or not. I won't judge. Second, for as many black women you see vlogging and blogging, there have got to be at least 10-15 more non-black women doing the same thing. Sharing more on the internet might be attributable to a change in the way we grew up with social media rather than race (though, black and Latino ppl are more likely to use certain social media venues than others - but I digress).

      Lastly, you're right about dating men that like you for you. Unfortunately, as ShaSha mentioned above, it's hard to find someone who likes you for you. We get WAY too many fetish-y, inappropriate messages and comments online and in person.

    2. No I wasn't talking about vlogs, Youtube, or blogs. And see I know there are a lot of women who put stuff out there.

      And when I first noticed IR blogs I decided to try and find the same sites from women of other races. At the time (I admit this was a couple of years ago) I didn't find more than ten total in that time it could have changed.

      And yes black women are fetish material for EVERYBODY even black men. I have noticed though that some women play into that.

  5. Well, I'm really glad that you're going to continue to blog. Honestly, this is the exact type of blog post that needs to be written! I, too, am tired of the onus always being put on black women. Non-black men need to do work too, whether that be challenging themselves to dispel stereotypes they believe about us, or whatever the issue is.

    This comment is incomplete, but I think I need to let my thoughts marinate before I can continue... :')

  6. Thought-provoking post. I agree that the onus of change is always appears to be on women, but how much of that is society/ media /marketing just tapping into the people-pleasing psyche that more women possess than men? I want to answer my own question with, “Of course every message is aimed at women! We’re the only ones willing to consider that unhappiness is our fault, while men always blame someone else!” But that would be sexist. Also, Asian "alpha male boot camps" seem to be gaining popularity. So perhaps we all just want the illusion of control over our future happiness and succumb to the marketing tactics aimed at our insecurities. Good for you for telling them their Kool-Aid is old and tired and you aren’t drinking it.

  7. Whew * wiping sweat from my face*, I was going to say that if you quit writing your blog, I would get you..maybe because you had other things to do..things happen and you just have to do what you have to what you have to do. Now that you said you're staying on here, I'm happy that we will be able to enjoy more of your stories.

    There are IR/AMBW blogs that are empty in substance, then there is your blog. Seriously, I mean it. Do you know how many so-called IR/AMBW BWE blogs I have read that really depressed the living daylights out of me? I mean, day in and day out, I read about some of these blogs and I may as well dig myself a grave and go in it because they're so depressing to read? I like blogs that can help me ( Or my S.O. If I had one) grow, learn about me ,learn about other people 's cultures and to be enlightened/entertained by these blogs. Too often, it's the opposite.

    I also liked what you said on here. One thing that you brought up ( that I liked) was about the "Black women growing on IR" dating/marriage. I really get annoyed by this because, it isn't entirely true. There are Black women who always wanted to date outside of their race,but the non-Black man wouldn't give them a chance. You brought up the OK cupid stats. While I do my best not to let them dictate my life, part of it is true. If Black woman aren't .
    being rejected because of the bogus generalizations non Black men have against us, they're are also afraid to approach us for the same very things they think Black women are supposed to be

    As a Black woman, I feel like nothing it's not our fault, it's just you have a lot of people who cannot seem to get out the ficticious la-la land of what Black women and women as a whole are supposed to be like. This is why I feel the way I do about it. I remembered reading behind that Ok Cupid website and read some of the reasons why these boys..*cough*...men refused to reply to these Black women. Some of the reasons included 1) They're fat 2) They're to bossy 3) they're not attractive . The funny part about the study was that none of these men actually interacted/lived around Black people.

    My problem with studies like this is that Black woman aren't expected to be honest. We're loathed because we're not trying to be like anybody else. We're bossy because we're outspoken, we're "ugly" because were a uniquely diversified race who refuses to let the status quo dictate who we should look like and generally love ourselves for it. Every race have stereotypes and have their good/bad in them yet the way some people view Black women,they should be put in prison for being who they are.

    Black women have nothing to prove to people. If they cannot see you for the person that you are then you're better of without them because they don't want to face reality.These guys expect for you to look,cook,be good all of the time, while they can be happy with who they are all of the time. I think the real excuse behind this Black-women-suck- mantra is control and that is what they can't accept.

    I've seen FB/AMBW/IR websites where Black girls literally said that cried because they couldn't attract a non Black man or just thought the guys played joke on them. All of this sounded like me when I was a teen and in my early 20's but if you're a person of substance, they wouldn't want these guys in the first place because they aren't about anything. I will guarantee that if they were to fall in love with these jerks,I will bet that they're going to be unhappy or they will get restless and find someone else who fits the same very description that they once seen in you because, they're never satisfied because they wouldn't be in the relationships for the right reasons. Good marriage/relationships are base with the commonality of people loving/wanting to be together through the thick and the thin.

    1. @M-.These guys expect for you to look,cook,be good all of the time, while they can be happy with who they are all of the time.

      Dear this is a Mantra for ALL men! Women today regardless of race jump through hoops to impress guys who haven't proved anything about how they feel towards them. The men pay lip service, but no actions are behind it. The women keep falling into it.

      As for these dating site well I take them with a grain of salt. Ok Cupid, Match, and eHarmony I always assumed were more for people who dated WITHIN their own race. Why are these studies never done on actually sites dedicated towards IR dating.

    2. I met my Asian boyfriend of about two years now on Eharmony, and honestly felt like it was the easiest way for me to explore IR dating without feeling completely out of place. It can be hard to know how to start conversations about IR dating/cultural differences in person, and I felt more comfortable asking and talking about those things through an online dating forum. Maybe that was just my experience, but I'd be curious to hear what others think...

  8. It reminds me that guy (he was Asian) on an Asian music forum...he was like "well, I'm not racist, Black girls don't want to date Asian guys too anyway".
    And I replied "Tell me where I can find online discussions on why Black women don't want to date Asian men specifically. Because I haven't seen Asian men complaining about being rejected by Black women, so don't twist the problem."

  9. Wow! Wasn't expecting this kind of response to this article! I think a lot of you folks make some good points and Autumn's “Of course every message is aimed at women! We’re the only ones willing to consider that unhappiness is our fault, while men always blame someone else!” is so on point!

    I'll say first that my basic issue is that I feel Black women are unfairly targeted when it comes to dating, particularly IR dating. It's just so one-sided. I'm not really expecting guys to start blogs about how much they love Black women or whatnot, I'll admit that the majority of IR blogs period seem to come from women. But why is the conversation about IR dating so unbalanced? Basically I feel like Black women constantly have to prove themselves. And it's not fair.

    It's not just blogs or magazines like Cluth and Essence that are talking about Black women and IR dating. It's The Huffington Post, it's Gawker media, etc. If you can find Black women that are open to talking about IR dating in "Black" media and "mainstream" media, then dammit find some non-Black men to do the same. I just want balanced conversations. There's just too much focus on what Black women are doing when it comes to IR dating and there's very little focus on what men are doing.

    That's where I felt conflicted about my blog, because I'm probably doing the same thing. I actually do like blogging about IR dating. I like writing about my experiences and I love reading about others. I know most of my readers are women and I know how to relate to them more. I don't want to stop talking about IR dating and I definitely want to keep blogging, but I'm not sure of HOW I should talk about it from this point. I don't know how much more effort I should put into finding the perspective of men. Does it even defeat the purpose if it's still me (a Black women) seeking out men to hear what they have to say? I'm probably just thinking to much about it though. LOL I'm not that deep.

  10. That's one of the other reasons why I felt no need to continue my blog or my webcomic(I do plan to pick it up again but more of a focus on what happens in my life with little focus on romance). I feel in terms of my relationship that I shouldn't have to prove anything! I always liked your blog and your IR dating entries felt like you always brought it down to earth and debunked the mystifying aspect of dating Asian men. But honestly I have started to become annoyed about certain women who have Asian partners and use them to get money and stuff(Like trying to be the next Jon and Kate plus 8 or something) due to the relationship their in. I don't want to use my relationship to generate revenue because I think I'm a special snowflake(but if I could just make a living off of webcomics that'd be nice..)

    But in all honesty, due to the sentiments you started to have,did you think of a blog name change? like Shasha&__Nick name you have for the hubs?

    1. I have to agree the IR sites regardless of who the women are dating have become tired. I think more should be done about building up yourself first before running out and finding a partner.

    2. I won't change the name of the blog. Even if I did, I probably wouldn't name it after us since I don't talk about our relationship all that much since we're pretty boring people, LOL. Initially I was being somewhat facetious when I named the site because it reflex the way I write. So it stuck for me. :)

    3. Unfortunately, I was one of the Asian men being used. Although my ex used me, I put myself in that situation, and continued to do so because I thought I just had to trust her all that I can. Despite all the negatives there will be no generalization of not dating black women ever again.

  11. Really loved this blog and it would be a shame if you discontinued! Although as a blogger myself, I do understand the struggle haha. But you're doing excellent work and I thank you. :)
    I'm one of those black women that are interested in Asian men and it's always felt like my responsibility to make myself available, visible, actively interested, etc. It's incredibly unfair this way. Dating problems with black women are usually always put on black women, but it's not like I'm out here dating myself lol. This should go both ways.

  12. I've gotten some pretty strong impressions of Asian men using Black women, and plenty of them have tried to use me like a Kleenex, but never the reverse. Anon 4:19, I'm so sorry that happened to you. I heard only one other brief mention of an Asian guy getting used, but it was secondhand. It must happen, but guys stay quiet. It's terrible.

    You know, one thing has always bothered me about AMBW. Multiple times, I have been openly hit on by Caucasian men when I am out on a date with an Asian man. And each time, the Asian man was oblivious. When I brought it up after, he accused me of making the whole thing up! Mulling it over, I think I get the (sick and twisted) logic in their heads.

    Asian women will (almost) always be with a white man- any white man is better than any Asian man in their eyes. Let's not trip about this: even plants and animals all know that Asian chicks are usually "Whites Only". This makes a lot of Asian men accept white men as their superiors.

    So, if I, a Black woman, am out with an Asian guy there are only two possible reasons he can surmise for that. 1. Nobody- NOBODY- wants me, especially not a glorious and godlike white guy. If any white man at all were interested in me, I would obviously be bowing and scraping and walking arm in arm with him (like Asian chicks do). Since I'm not with a white guy, there must be not one single solitary white man willing to poke me with a stick. Not a bald one, obese one, Autistic one, elderly one etc. NONE. Otherwise I would be clutching his arm with tears of gratitude/pride all over my face, like an Asian girl. Right? The second possibility is that I am certifiably insane. I mean, how could I prefer their phenotype, they think.

    Their own feelings of rejection from Asian women and the rampant disrespect they get in society take a toll. So, from the mindset of a man who feels that way about his Asian masculinity, any women willing to be with him must, by logical deduction, have NO other choice. He can't respect me because he doesn't respect himself.

    This does not bode well for AMBW. I'm afraid Asian men only value and respect women they see on white men's arms. I've had Asian guys hit on me only after they saw a white guy flirt with me. I've had an Asian guy want to talk with me online because his white friend has a black girlfriend. I wish I were joking.

    I'm starting to wonder how AMBW can work, with this many emotionally burdened and injured people trying to pair up. Sadly, the only men who don't give 50 billion bonus points to any and every white woman are white men! I don't want a white guy, but those are the only ones willing to give black women a fair shake. :(