Wednesday, July 22, 2009

When you are in your 20's...

...You can afford to play around and mess about with crucial and critical issues around the reality of black women and the condition of the so called 'Black Community.' Indeed in my last post, it was revealed that it was an 18 year old that decided to 'bless' us with her broad knowledge of the world and lecture us on how things should be, that is before scuttling back to, 'Y'all are grown ass women' when we decided to engage her on the points she raised.

I feel sorry for a host of black women who are taking notes from women under 25 on these critical issues as raised on these blogs. Now I have nothing against young black women giving advice, but a 24 year old black woman and a 34 year old black woman are in a different place, they are in different seasons requiring different priorities and with different opportuntities available to them. Do you know where you are on the time/priorities spectrum?

Yes I was doing my trawl round blogsphere and came across the comments of a black woman who said that now she was in her thirties, she could 'see' the sense in a lot of the stuff that Black women IR/Black women empowernment bloggers had been saying all along.

See it wasnt that we were not making sense, it was that we didnt need to make sense to her at a time before now. She could afford to dismiss the key issues we were raising, for a few more rounds on the merry go round before she realized that it was time to get off and face reality. But you can imagine all the women she must have given 'bad' advice to based on where she was (at a place of not needing to get real or take these issues seriously) in the past. Some of you are lapping up advice from women who are either so very ok with being self-sacrificing mules or who can afford a few more years of joking about with critical issues. Some of you are taking directions from such ones, looking at their content and happy faces on the merry-go-round and deciding, 'well if CC is unperturbed then maybe I shouldnt, there must be some hope.'

I am sorry but I cannot teach black women comonsense. I know that black women have had their comonsense and survival instincts screwed with, to make them better 'zombies' working for others, but black women have to find a way to come up with some kind of framework within which they can sort themselves out and stop being 'used' and conned by others so easily.

At anything from 18-30 black women can afford to 'blast' IR and Empowernment bloggers and the critical issues they are trying to get black women to confront. The problem comes when some of you who are at an age where these issues are critical, listen to such ones and base your decisions or put off your decisions because of what they are saying.

Deep down I think some of you do not want to survive and to achieve what you want from life, if you did, some of these things would need no spelling out. You would already know what kinds of actions and philosophies would get you where you want to be and not just that, you would have the courage to step out and do what is needed.

Maybe all this confusion and 'headlessness' is because black people in the West are no longer proverb-telling cultures. Jesus taught so much with proverbs and sayings, and I think these proverbs caused people to both think rather than operate on auto pilot, but it also had a way of by-passing human psychological guards and the rebellion against being told what to do.

There is a Nigerian proverb I learnt that says:

When the Lizard and the Mouse go out to play in the rain, the Lizard comes back and is dry in no time, while the Mouse is still wet and cold.

Now according to an aunt, this proverb is used to tell children and adults that they must be aware of their particular circumstances before they go along with everyone or anyone else because it might not turn out for them the way it will for others. In this case the Mouse did not take into consideration that it had a furry coat as opposed to the leather skin of the Lizard which lent itself to rapid drying.

Black women are a diverse group across age, beliefs in their worth and in what they think they are due and what treatment think they deserve. They generate ideas, view points and critiques based on these different positions, therefore it behoves you to determine where each black woman is across a range of key issues before you jump into their car and ride off with them.
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An update on a previous post...


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17 comments:

Anonymous said...

When you are in your 20's...
...You can afford to play around and mess about with crucial and critical issues around the reality of black women and the condition of the so called 'Black Community.'


Well... These black women in their 20's and 30's best be careful who they're "playing around and messing with". That's all I know.

Because the "brothas" are killing them.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/martha-st-jean/black-women-and-the-aids_b_189635.html

Did you know that AIDS is the leading cause of death among black women aged 25-34? Besides men who have sex with men and bisexuals in the black community, black women are the most affected. Black women made up 35% of new infections among our racial group. As a racial group, this disease affects black women more than any other. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the rate of occurrence or HIV incidence among black women is about 15 times as high as that of white women.

Once you're infected, ain't nobody going to want you anyway. Even if you have wisend up. It's too late then.

Young black women can "play around and mess about" if they want to. But they're simply digging their own graves.

Khadija said...

Halima,

You've raised some excellent points here. I'm concerned by the near-total lack of discernment that I see when I browse through the comments on many BW's blogs.

In addition, many BW's empowerment- bashing-20-something Black girl-women seem to hold multiple, CONTRADICTORY thoughts about these issues that they pontificate on with such confidence. All at the same time, many of them:

1-Are comfortable playing around at their age---they're not concerned about their biological clocks;

2-Despite seeing the mass absence of marriage in the AA collective, they are confident in assuring other BW that if they will only act right, then they will have their very own Black Prince Charming;

3-Despite seeing the mass absence of marriage in the AA collective, they are confident that they themselves will be the BF version of "Jackie Robinson-one in a million" to find marriage with a Black Prince Charming;

4-While holding and advocating the above beliefs, they are often also "hedging their bets" and planning on single parent adoption as "Plan B" if they don't marry their Black Prince Charming by age ________. Of course, to hear them tell it, it would take some bizarre stroke of fate for them to not meet their goal of marrying a Black Prince Charming. [One might ask them why they need a Plan B if there are so many quality BM available, and if things are so healthy and wonderful on the Black-on-Black love front.]

5-Some of them are never-married single mothers who have already been played and burned in the ultra-toxic, all-Black relationship market; and yet are STILL spouting the above beliefs.

It's all quite irrational. And dangerous for anyone who allows these girl-women to bully and pressure them into narrowing their opportunities to find a wholesome, MARRIAGE-minded, quality husband.

Peace, blessings and solidarity.

Felicia said...

Ditto everything Khadija just said.

Especially this part:

"It's all quite irrational. And dangerous for anyone who allows these girl-women to bully and pressure them into narrowing their opportunities to find a wholesome, MARRIAGE-minded, quality husband."

Rationality is NOT a valued trait in the current "black community".

Especially not BW thinking, and behaving rationally.

It's considered "acting white".

Emotionalism and magical thinking is what's valued.

That's what's revered. It's considered "authentic" to turn of your brain and go with your "gut feeling".

And emotionalism is exactly what's going to KEEP the majority of BW in their pits.

Any BW would be a FOOL to let basically the living dead of ANY age dissuade them from achieving the life they deserve with a good, working, responsible, family oriented, and non color stuck man regardless of "race".

ActsofFaithBlog said...

Was there another link attached to this post? I don't want to miss anything! Great post by the way. Who actually listens to these women?

Anonymous said...

Please correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the man in that photo a televangelist accused of assaulting his wife another televangelist? As such who is this woman in the photo and why is she smiling like she has a catch on her hands?

daphne said...

Great post, Halima.

I don't believe any black woman, of any age, can afford to ignore the critical issues. Youth lends itself to a perception of invincibility and "time is on my side," but even now, these young black women are paying for turning a blind eye - it doesn't just hit you when 30 comes knocking.

Many of the critical issues - single mothers, AIDS, unmarried, mansharing, skin shade racism, etc - it's hitting the 18-30 age range the hardest. Thus, even the sense of "time is on my side because of I'm young" is an illusion.

Halima said...

thanks all for your responses.

No act of faith there isnt a link

yes that is the 'evangelist', he is set to get married to another woman after beating his former wife to a pulp and putting her in hospital. We are still waiting for his coming clean and heartfelt apology...

PioneerValleyWoman said...

Drawing upon both Khadija's and Felicia's comments,

But of course the woman who married him is probably saying to herself:

He told me...(emotional and irrational thinking).

I just know he could not have...(magical thinking).

That heifer just...(emotional aad irrational thinking).

That will never happen to me; he just won't do it. I know how to treat a man right...(magical thinking).


And there we have it!

Anonymous said...

I am in my early 20's and I can agree for the most part with young women in my age group who are black, who seem to actively choose to not face the facts about dating, relationships, and marriage. I know of an older female in her 30's however, who behaves very similar to the 20 yr old's I have encountered, and imagine there are quite a few more women like her. I chose to not associate with any of the black females my age beyond a surface level because I find they are just not like minded enough with me. I attribute this to my exposure to blogs like this one. I did try and encourage them to take a look at these blogs as well, but many in my opinion are just too lazy about reading blogs and perhaps too defensive when it comes to blogs that highlight an opinion they feel uncomfortable with. For young 20 yr old black girls like myself who have heeded the information on black women empowerment blogs, I suggest we start our own group. Similar to the safe haven created by the women on these blogs. I am going to open an account on blogger and see about getting this started. The objective for starting a blog network that joins black women in their 20's is not to repeat the information we have been told, but to brainstorm ways of putting to action what bloggers like Halima, Khadija, Evia, Sara, Lisa, CW etc. have advocated, within the context of our lives now.

PioneerValleyWoman said...

More on the magical thinking front, this time, returning to the 18-30 year olds.

A recent example: young black woman, 30 years old, moved to large urban environment, hopeful of the possibilities, because of course, it was supposed to be her Mecca that she had been searching for: a majority black community.

So whom does she look to in trying to find this community? The same old people she knew from school, the same people who were part of her black student organizations.

She branches out, though, but among similar type people and from similar circles.

After six or so years, nothing happening--a few dates here or there, but nothing is working out.

She is urged, why limit yourself to only certain types of circles?

She herself articulates the problem, but she does not seem to connect the dots:

1. I only notice a certain type of black men.

2. As many black women do, I tend to put black men on a pedestal, even when I know they don't do the same to us.

One would think bells would go off at this point, but no.

She is asked, so why do you do it, put them on a pedestal when they don't always do the same to you and other women like you?

They are the "BMWs" with options. They can pick and choose. Why aren't you exercising yours?

Then comes the deer in the headlights moment: "that is an important point," followed by a pensive look, sad, perhaps?

The look of, "if only they would....," fill in the blank.

Magical thinking, magical thinking. So many can't give up the magical thinking because it means giving up the dream and that hurts too much!

Aphrodite said...

@ Anon 8:38

"Well... These black women in their 20's and 30's best be careful who they're "playing around and messing with". That's all I know."


Co-sign. Not only that, but BW at those ages are most likely to be the victims of physical/sexual assault and murder.

Pamela said...

Great post, Halima. I am so glad I was raised with common sense. I got the revelation pretty early in life to not listen to self serving fools. I did not meet my prince when I was younger BUT I did not kiss any frogs along the way using common sense and refusing to listen to the fools that insisted that I only pick from bm. I took romance and marriage very serious as a young woman. I also saw many my age at the time that did not and now regret decisions that they made. I have no regrets. I sincerely hope that other young bw will think like I did and not waste their years.

To the anon asking about the picture: You can check out the blog Character Corner for details about this. He is still on probation after pleading guilty to domestic violence. That woman deserves whatever happens to her. Either that or she is INSANE beyond hope other than supernatural intervention. Not sure about the accuracy of the information from the posted links but the blog moderator is local to where the minister is based. Just go to the labels section on the left and select Bishop Weeks or Juanita Bynum and you will see the post.

J'adore Rio said...

To Anonymous @ 2:14 pm

I am but 20 years old myself, and I could not agree with you more! I have been reading and LEARNING from these blogs for a little over a year and a half, and I'm soooooo glad I did. I don't get caught up in the same crazy/silly situations I see many other African-American college girls on my campus getting caught up in. I could NEVER go out with a bum...NEVER!!! I've walked away from harrassers and cat-callers many times...I have always been taught not to give that type of foolishness the time of day.

It just sickens me that so many of us (especially at the college age) are acting like this. I have made it a point to expect nothing short of excellence in EVERY aspect of my life...through other's situations, I've learned that it's dangerous to do otherwise.

Taylor-Sara said...

To Anon. who asked about the woman beating bishop. Not only did he beat his previous wife to a pulp outside of a major hotel, but the story is that he had his hands around her neck and would have killed her had not a wb-bellboy intevened! He has also been accused of beating another young woman in the same church. (apparently because she would not sleep with him) The news said that the other women in the church (including his wife at the time) covered it up, and refused to take the young girl to the hospital because they did not want 'another good brother in jail' (SMH)

ak said...

God I wish I could rewind my silly 20s! I hope my 30s will end on a much better note!

But I still want to marry well and live well. Otherwise, I'd rather dry up and leave no heirs. I told my Mom to brace herself just in case our line might die out, because if I can't find a quality mate, then there will be no kids from me.

Meena said...

Hello all,
I would like to bring attention to the new blog I have started called: Young Black Women Determined to Live Well. (youngbwdeterminedtolivewell.blogspot.com) I started the blog to connect with more young black women like myself who have read various blogs on empowering black women. Please feel free to stop by and share your thoughts on potential discussions.

sean said...

hi, I didn't read everything, but I would like to offer my view on one point regarding your outlook in life-

yes a 25 yr old is different from a 35 yr old, but to say that they input is not valid, because they are in different situations is ignoring them, ignoring them which is ignorance. Too many people have these outlooks, but in reality you can learn from a 9 year old.

I don't know what she said, and maybe she was offending, but even if the person is a total idiot, you could relate & see where they are coming from.

it is good to be open minded and people have different experiences, so it's wrong to label people by age groups. People have different views affected by different situations & it's good to be open, be aware, learn & relate.

Another topic concerning me & I would like to discuss is your views here :
"I am sorry but I cannot teach black women comonsense. I know that black women have had their comonsense and survival instincts screwed with, to make them better 'zombies' working for others, but black women have to find a way to come up with some kind of framework within which they can sort themselves out and stop being 'used' and conned by others so easily."
I'm sorry it seems like you've had some rough experiences.

but the world is not out to get black people or black women, there are haters everywhere & they are %100 ignorant, please don't let them get to you, although it is troubling witnessing that BS.

I really am against this type of outlook, we are all people & really need to stop having such a negative outlook- that's not how it should be. I'm half white & asian, this shouldn't matter, but my son is half black, & I wouldn't want him thinking or dealing with this type of views that are prominent in the black community. it shouldn't matter if he's black enough, or how he needs to learn special "survival instincts" for being black. Racism needs to end, unfortunately there will always be ignorance, but it is certainly fueling racism's fire to segregrate yourselves by race & scorn the world for being out to get you.

the world is superficial & yea if I were to marry someone based on physical attraction alone, she would be black. But there's so much more than just looks that I love & can't deny that I want to fall in love with a black girl. But I hate dealing with the looks I get & it's so hard to get to know a girl, because of the spreading of these kinds of ignorant outlooks.

I'm sure there's much more I don't understand about you, & you must have been wronged & hurt, but strive for diversity, segrating yourself by race is not the answer. most people are not racist, & everyone has the capacity to learn.