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Black Woman: Who She Really Is and Isn't




Excerpted from
How to Love a Black Woman : Give-and-Get-the Very Best in Your Relationship
By Dr. Ronn Elmore

Whatever your own personal images and perceptions about the nature of Black women are, they will stare you straight in the face as you read this book. You will find that some of those images of her will be confirmed here and you will take pleasure in knowing that, in that specific area, you have been working with solid, reliable facts that have helped you to relate effectively to the Black woman in your life.

However, there are likely to be other images and perceptions about them that you may hold which, as you read this book, will be challenged for their accuracy and their usefulness in your efforts to love her in a way that benefits you both. These faulty, albeit perhaps well-meaning, misperceptions can be seen for what they are, and some more accurate and thus more useful ones will replace them.

Remember: How you perceive Black women has everything to do with how you will relate to them (and of course, how they will relate back to you).

For the next few pages, you will have the opportunity to fine-tune your own image of Black women.

If you are honest and open-minded, and willing to boldly examine your own thinking, this section will benefit you greatly. Here you'll take inventory of the facts you have and how well they have served you in the adventure of loving a Black woman.

As I share with you some of men's most commonly held images of Black women, ask yourself constantly:

Is this image truthful?

Is this image fair?

Is this image respectful?

Is this image useful?

Is this image mine?

The Fits on Me Black Woman

From somewhere beyond a sincere brother's hopes, high standards, and way beyond reality, comes the phenomenal female of myth and legend, the Fits on Me Black Woman. In spite of the fact that she really doesn't exist, she's perceived as perfection personified and many a man either thought he had seen one locked on to some other brother's arm, or that he had one himself, only to eventually discover that he had been (once again) sadly mistaken. The Fits on Me Black Woman possesses every impressive quality you'd ever want, and not a thing you don't. She fits our fantasies like a glove, and holds the promise of being worth the very long wait for her glorious arrival. Their superior good taste and limitless patience is what keeps some men eternally searching for her, while repeatedly dismissing the real-life women all around them. If a man believes in the existence of the Fits on Me Black Woman, then his woman has to fit all his idealized "got to's."

  • She's "gotta" be incredibly, completely, eternally fine, with no visible flaws, thus perfectly fitting his lofty daydreams about himself.

  • She's "gotta" be an absolute genius, with the kind of brilliance and extraordinary ability that elevates his status. She fits him, because her brilliance can be turned on and off-and he controls the switch.

  • She's "gotta" be extroverted enough to prove he's snagged a winner, but introverted enough to keep others from thinking he picked a tramp. She fits him because she's willing to become what he dreams up.

  • She's "gotta" be interested in what he's interested in, to the same degree that he is. She fits him because she doesn't place a high value on things he doesn't care about.

  • She's "gotta" be highly spiritual, but she fits him by not letting pleasing her God become more important than pleasing her man.

  • She's "gotta" be honest and outspoken, but she fits him by only saying what he loves to hear.

  • She's "gotta" be ambitious and self-reliant, but she fits him because she's willing to trash her ambitions and goals if they inconvenience or intimidate him.

  • She's "gotta" be passionate and sexually proficient, but she fits him because she's willing to let him decide the when and how of it all.

  • She's "gotta" intuitively know his values, desires, and expectations, but she fits him because she doesn't need him to tell her what they are.

  • She's "gotta" have all the nurturing qualities of his mother, but she fits him because she never treats him like he's her son.

Obviously this image of Black women is the figment of a highly creative, but completely self-absorbed, imagination. It's a naive and unrealistic stereotype of Black women that characterizes them as their men's perfect trophies, and the ultimate badge of his status and significance. But the Fits on Me image of Black women is way over the top. The facts are way off, and to use them will keep you endlessly waiting for the "right" Black woman to come along and constantly dissatisfied with the real-life one you already have.


The Steps on Me Black Woman

Far out at the opposite extreme from the previous fantasized portrait of Black women is the Steps on Me Black Woman. She is that hopelessly negative woman that embodies men's worst perceptions. It's an overgeneralized misrepresentation of all Black women, based on the most glaring faults of some of them. This distorted image of them has helped make Black male-female relations increasingly become a hotbed of mistrust, hostility, and alienation.

  • She competes with men, trying hard to outdo them in nearly every area, including love, career, finances, morality, and self-sufficiency. And she feels justified in pointing out how men come up short in them all.

  • She's never satisfied, and constantly demands more and more sensitivity and emotional expression from her man, then criticizes him for being "weak" and coming up short when he gives it.

  • She's critical, comparing her man unfavorably to men of other races and cultures, and delights in showing him how he comes up short.

  • She's suspicious, convinced that her man means her no good and either just lied to, cheated on, or disrespected her, or is about to somehow come up short integrity wise.

  • She's unfaithful and either has had, or is secretly fantasizing about having, some other man, against whom her man comes up short.

  • She's bitchy, all neck-swiveling, hip-holding, eye-rolling, and acid-tongued when he fails. She believes when he comes up short, he deserves it.

Are there any Black women who possess these harsh, judgmental qualities? Absolutely. But does this image accurately reflect the way most Black women relate to their men? Of course not. Your disgust with them and perhaps some exhausted unwillingness to take a closer look at Black women and the nature, intent, and meaning of their style of relating may threaten to lock this scathing generalization into your mind. In fact, few women deserve to be placed in this category. It is as extreme and unrealistic as the previous one.



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