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In many ways, the women are very different: One is a doctor, another a hairdresser, the third is on welfare. But they have at least two things in common. Barbara, 45, thinks her marital chances may have died in a distant land. With a strong desire to marry within their race, and with violence, incarceration, unemployment and other social factors reducing the of available black men, many black women say they are competing for too few men.
And that perceived dearth of marriageable black men has stirred an emotional debate that has reverberated from church workshops to cocktail parties, from popular literature to stage and screen. Many black men, however, say some black women focus on superficial qualities in potential mates, thus ignoring substantial s of quality bachelors. Yet, despite such discourse, many say not enough serious discussion has been devoted to the decline in black marriage. They emphasize that solutions are critical to avoid a devastating impact on the black community for generations.
A growing of women are raising children alone, and children who see no marital relationships in their homes may be less inclined as adults to make such a commitment. The s show that black women under 35 are at least twice as likely as their white and Latina counterparts to have never married. And marriage rates have dropped much farther in the past two decades among blacks than any other American ethnic group surveyed. No figures were available for Asian-Americans.
For many black women, the fall-out is deeply personal, with emotions ranging from hopelessness to reation. Some have opted to cross age and racial boundaries; others simply prepare to live their lives alone.
Not everyone agrees there is a shortage of eligible black men. Some say such a notion has been exploited by those who focus on negatives within the black community. Others claim it is African-American men themselves who sometimes exaggerate the ratio of females to males, using their perceived scarcity to create power over women. At first glance, statistics appear to favor black women. For every 1, black females born inthere were 29 more black males, according to U. Bureau of Health Statistics. Black males have a slightly higher infant mortality rate than females, and homicide is the leading cause of death for African-American boys ages 15 to One in four black men in their 20s are behind bars, on probation or on parole.
Black men age 20 and older faced a Some will be crippled by substance abuse and others will choose a mate of another ethnicity--or their own gender. And some will simply choose not to marry at all. Such myriad factors severely decrease the of black men able and willing to marry and support families, many experts say. Thus, fewer black women will marry, and the of households headed by black females will increase as some women choose to have children without a spouse. No husband or second income means a life of poverty for many single mothers. Census Bureau. Ultimately, the declining marriage rate spawns economic repercussions that have an impact on the entire black community, researchers say.
Lady Cage has struggled alone.
And she has little sympathy for divorced women who complain they cannot find new mates when many, like her, have never walked down the aisle. She now dates men she once might not have considered. And in the meantime, a job, volunteer work and an exercise routine fill her days. Even with this dwindling pool, it will happen. Middle- to upper-income black women may be less adversely affected than their lower-income counterparts, but experts say both groups wind up drawing from the same shrunken pool.
And that competition, many women say, makes some single black men less willing to settle down with one woman. There are men all over the place. A relationship counselor, Chapman says she understands why some black males trumpet such s, regardless of the truth.
To be sure, there are single women who enjoy their independence and have no desire to pursue the stuff of fairy-tales and TV sitcoms. Yet, many women want to marry, no matter their color. For a growing of Americans, the fantasy is simply not reality.
From tothe percentage of married adults nationally dropped from 72 to 61, according to the Census Bureau. The percentages dropped from 73 to 64 for whites and from 62 to 61 for Latinos. In some age groups, the of never-married black women is more than twice that of their white and Latina counterparts. While noting the effects that violence, incarceration, and unemployment have on limiting the pool of available black men, some experts say the declining marriage rate in the black community simply mirrors the overall decline of matrimony in the U.
Professionals postponing marriage while pursuing careers, and the growing acceptance of being single also contribute to the decline, they say. Mincy adds that some men may be reluctant to marry women who already have children. Others, however, contend that some black women limit their own chances at marriage by wanting their potential mates to meet unrealistic expectations. They want a black Donald Trump, and you can count on one hand the of men who fit that description. The charge that black women want too much is fiercely debated--by men who claim they are hard-working and available, but often ignored; by women who say they simply want a man who will love and respect them; by professionals who defend their desire to marry a man with similar education and income.
A lot of guys who do street maintenance are single, a lot of garbage men are single. It hurts. Turn to another race. A generation ago, researchers say, expectations for spouses were different. Everything would be as wonderful for us as it was for them.
They were also having problems in their marriages and their families. Some professional women have turned from seeking men of similar backgrounds and are considering blue-collar men. But they fear rejection because the men may feel threatened by their income or status.
The fact they have an M. While some women have immersed themselves in work and other activities, others have become more proactive--seeking black men from other countries or crossing age, class and racial boundaries to find a mate. Magazine editor Miles lauds both approaches, adding that less than a decade ago she saw much more desperation among women in unhealthy relationships.
Now I see the panic subsiding. There are fewer taboos. Miles notes that many women buying personal in her magazine no longer specify only black men.
Jean, who dates men of other races, says half her clients are black, including a broad spectrum of women who often consider dating non-blacks as a last resort. She dre people constantly asking why an attractive woman such as her is not romantically involved, and she longs for a family.
The idea of man-sharing is controversial, with many black women saying they refuse to knowingly participate in such relationships. But Hoytt, a divorcee who has been single for nearly 13 years, did. It was just a result of things just being the way they are.
There are efforts to turn things around. Besides dating services, forums in cities such as Los Angeles and Washington have ed black men and women to discuss strengthening relationships. Many also speak of an effort by black professionals to mentor poor children, hoping that positive role models can minimize the hopelessness, violence, and crime that stunt the lives of so many young black men.
Myers, a human relations and social justice professor at the University of Minnesota. All Sections. About Us. B2B Publishing. Business Visionaries. Hot Property. Times Events. Times Store. Facebook Twitter Show more sharing options Share Close extra sharing options. The Marriage Gap : Some They are black. And they are alone.Any single black women for Los angeles male
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