If you’re a single black woman, educated, accomplished, attractive, with no known crazy tendencies, then chances are you’ve had this statement said to you. Can you remember your reaction? Did you respond with a sarcastic, “I can’t believe it either!”? Or maybe you laughed it off while simultaneously giving the person the “what for” in your mind! What ever your reaction was, you likely didn’t appreciate the comment.
Article after article has been written about the alleged “epidemic” of single black women, each trying to answer the question “why are so many black women single?” Research continues to show that the percentage of black women who are unmarried is double that of white women. Other research and editorials site lack of desire to get married and too picky as reasons why more black women are single when compared to other groups of women. A couple of years ago, Oprah got in on the conversation with a special segment on single black women. Even CNN’s special, Black in America, took a shot at it by filming a focus group of black men and women discussing the state of black relationships. Although quite entertaining, they struggled, as do many articles and programs on this topic (this article included!) to really answer the question in a way that suggests the existence of a solution. Often the answers focus on the perceived material needs of single black women (e.g. money, education, property, etc.) or on their actions, attributes and choices without a balanced investigation into the actions, attributes and choices of single black men.
But even if the investigation into this topic were balanced and society asked just as many men “why are you single?” as we do women there’s no guarantee we’d come up with any better answers than what the current research and editorials show. Which begs the question, is the growing number of single black women an issue that can be resolved or an “evolutionary” epidemic with no definitive solution? Let us know what you think.