"I know there's dude's ballin', and yeah, that's nice/And they gonna keep calling and trying, but you stay right, girl/And when you get on, he'll leave your ass for a White girl,"
—Kanye West, "Gold Digger"
There's a common belief by many in our community that successful Black men are drawn and commit to women outside of their race more than Black women. Sure, there are quite a few celebrities involved in interracial relationships/marriages, but the real world is much bigger than Hollywood, professional sports and entertainment. Still, the idea that "ethnic," "exotic" and anything-other-than-a-Black-woman is the ultimate prize continues to prevail.
That may be the reality for some, but not for me.
For as long as I can remember I've loved Black women. In fact, when I look back on my dating life, the pages of my little black book are exclusively filled with women of color. Now I'd be lying if I said that I never found a woman of another race to be attractive—I'm a man and can appreciate beauty in the opposite sex in all shapes, colors and creeds—but I just always imagined myself with a sister at the end of the day. I mean, I was raised by a Black woman, grew up around Black women, went to school with Black women and have primarily worked with Black women. So it makes sense why I ended up marrying a Black woman—a dark skinned Black woman at that.
Does that mean that I chose my spouse based solely on her being Black? Of course not. If I did, I'd be no better than the stereotypical Black man who fetishizes White women or any other race. When it came to dating and ultimately choosing a life partner, internal factors like interests, personality and even cultural connections held more weight for me than the physical. My wife being Black was more of beautiful bonus than a requirement.
The same applies for any of the women I've ever dated. I never went out of my way to date only women of color, but there really wasn't a desire to explore outside of my community either. Sure, I've known White, Asian and even Indian women who were each beautiful in their own right, but for whatever reason our friendships never evolved past platonic. If the opportunity for romance had ever presented itself I wouldn't have been opposed to the idea, but honestly I never gave it that much thought. I blame that more on chemistry than complexion.
Despite all the stereotypes I've heard over the years about Black men lusting after Becky that just never was the case for me. In life just as in love I appreciate good people over skin color and her "good hair". But that doesn't mean that I can't play my part in spreading a little more Black love in the world.
Anslem Samuel Rocque is a Brooklyn-based writer who covers pop culture, entertainment and relationship writing. Previously running the popular site, Naked With Socks On, Anslem now wears much more clothes while working on his debut novel. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.