No Offense-Unless it Applies

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“No offense.  Unless it applies.”

© http://KhalilahYasmin.com

I’ve written a blog on this in the past from both sides of the spectrum. Years ago it upset me when people said they were less attracted to their own race. I thought it was wrong to discriminate against your own ethnicity.  To say “I want no one that looks like me” seemed insulting.  I then referred to it as self-hatred.

I was wrong.

In the past year- I’ve discovered new experiences; both positive and negative. I am enlightened by both. Nothing is regret when you gain knowledge from it.  You can say I have ‘experimented’ with ‘options’ in the past 14 months.  I have always considered myself an equal opportunist yet found myself BACK THEN more attracted to Black men even though some of them frightened me by their levels of  aggression.

So here’s my theory; we gravitate towards where we find peace and purpose. (Those of us that prefer peace). And subconsciously we teach our minds to avoid that which brings us pain or discomfort. ESPECIALLY if those situations were frequent and/or severe. I meet/see men everywhere of all nationalities, countries, and education backgrounds. Whether it is a night out, the post office or while on a walk. 

I understand that a man that feels he “looks like me” will be more comfortable approaching me.  But just because we look similar on the outside does not mean we will mesh on a mental or spiritual level.

Let me start by saying- I will always love my people but some of y’all are giving us ALL a bad name. If I had to record all of my experiences for the past 12 months and categorize them by comfort, interest and the race…My own people have been the most rude and ignorant in means to get my attention. It’s embarrassing and sad.  They have also been abrasive upon admittance of disinterest. But those are simply MY experiences.  My experiences do not count for every one as a whole.

The portrayal of black men in the media, music, and film has created an aggressive, flashy and disrespectful image that a lot of people are taking as their reality.  That reality is not something we must accept by default.  It does not compliment the image. It has progressively created a monster.  A million of them that think that approaching a woman is a game.  And if they do not win this game, the woman must be punished or a called names.

So because we are both black, and you see me walking with someone who isn’t, does not mean I chose his RACE, it means I chose his mind.  I chose the way he treated me.

 

A friend of mine reminded me that a lot of women DO turn to an alternative based on the common experiences with their minority majority.  She claims that some women turn to women for that deeper connection they do not feel with men.

And let me say this; it’s not a conscious decision that one makes as I previously thought. No one wakes up and says “F*ck Black Men”. Or even “F*ck Black Women”. It just doesn’t happen that way. It’s a gradual mind shift you don’t realize till you’re in route to your car and 4 black men corner you.

Till “what will happen if I say no” crosses your mind. Till “why am I a b*tch because YOU cannot talk intelligently to ME”.  Until this pattern repeats itself with the same Earth-suit.

 

Or take for instance the young woman that recently was shot in DC because she refused her phone number to a man whom she found no interest in.  Where does the aggression lie? 

So I subconsciously found myself being attracted to ‘them’ less. From a cognitive stand point as stated earlier– this makes perfect sense.

Every once in a while- I will meet a man of my own ethnicity who will be respectful and blow my mind. But the MAJORITY is giving them a bad reputation.

I know this does not apply to all- it’s just my observation from my experiences as I have watched how I have now become more reclusive to that particular group.

What gets me interested? A man that can simultaneously blow my mind and looks passed the outer barrier.  We should recognize that just because we look alike does not mean we ARE alike and are limited to options to simply choose what looks acceptable.

 

A man that judges a woman by her mind and NOT her Earth-suit that she did not pick off of some “body rack”.

Another friend told me that she has had unpleasant experiences with men whom were her race which was Caucasian.  She claims Black men are nicer to her than her own.   Does this mean that some people feel more comfortable with their own race so as to take them for granted?  The family versus guest’s principle where we treat people we see as family less pleasant and do everything for the other person whom is new in our home?  “Save the good towels for the guests, you live here; you go grab the one with the stain on it”.

 

Whether it is —White, Blue, Black, Red, Yellow, or Silver.

Could that justify the mentality?  That we do not feel the need to respect our own?  

There IS a such thing as being TOO comfortable.

 

I’m not making any definites. I’m simply stating…

I’ve changed my mind.

 

 

I don’t look down at my skin when I meet with your eyes,

This is just my experience, no offense, unless it applies.  

5 comments on “No Offense-Unless it Applies

  1. Beautifully stated. I happen to be caucasian. And while I appreciate the beauty of some caucasian women, I don’t generally connect with them the way I do with women from other races. In my experience, there can be a numbness, or automatic communication between me and other caucasians. We take certain things for granted. As you so eloquently stated. We have assumptions. And some caucasian women (and men) set and reinforce terrible examples. I have seen how some caucasian women judge me because I am with an African-American or Latina woman. As with your experience, they think my choice is about race. But it’s not.

    Sometimes it is easier to see what’s going on with other people than it is to see what’s going on with ourself. Same is true on a racial level. I have experienced less honesty with people of my own race. I have experienced more honest awareness (both giving and receiving) with African-American women. And a successful relationship – which must succeed on many levels: physical, sexual, emotional, spiritual and psychic – must start with honest awareness, I feel like I’m writing a book, here (LOL). But your words speak to me, too. Even though the appearance of our life experiences is so different.

    That can only mean that you have written truly and from your heart. Because that’s what all honest writing does: it unites all of us in its light. Thank you for writing this.

  2. Maybe it’s because I’m Swedish or most likely because of something else but I can’t understand the concept of “races” or how people can divide themselves into groups based on the color of their skin. Skin color shouldn’t have a meaning, neither good or bad, it’s just different shades of beauty, it doesn’t make us who we are…

    In my opinion environment makes us who we are, where and with whom we spend our time and our ability to see things with our own eyes and not through others.

    Sadly tho some people don’t see that we are all the same and I wish that your blog post wasn’t necessary…

    Keep on writing, there’s beauty in your words.

  3. First things first, we are not all the same – and that’s not a bad thing. We are very different with different cultural experiences.

    Secondly, is there a good reason why you chose to pick photos of white women and Black men? (Freudian slip?)

    “Let me start by saying- I will always love my people but some of y’all are giving us ALL a bad name.”

    To sit here and pretend that your dating choices are not influenced by the negative portrayal of Black men in society and the media is ridiculous. You act like you date based on “connection” but it is obvious that “portrayal of black men in the media, music, and film has created an aggressive, flashy and disrespectful” has had a negative influence on you.

    To write out cultural connections, and focus on spiritual and mental (which are important too) is to undervalue any ethnic groups experiences.

    The fact that you hold and promote the notion that a few bad apples are spoiling it for all of us (like Russell Crowe and the KKK ruin it for all white people or Hitler has ruined it for German people) shows that you have bought into white people’s negative stereotypes of Black people including the emasculation and vilification of Black males.

    I too have “experimented” with different races and have gone back to Black men because they are me. When I’m with my boyfriend I can relax – I don’t have to worry about him not understanding the food that I eat, the head tie I wear at night, the terms that I use or the racist experiences that are my day-to-day as a Black women. I am not a rare and exotic fruit to him, I am a woman. I don’t have to worry about something getting lost in translation.

    So you enjoy your United Nations style of dating and I’ll enjoy mine. And I’m not offended. I just don’t get your broken line of reasoning.

  4. *Silently Laughs to Self*

    *Gathers Thoughts*

    It appears the Black Woman who labels herself as “I’m Just Saying” has indeed been offended by my post, which was NOT a clash on Black People, White People, or Green People. I was simply stating my experiences as they are relative to my life and those that have shared their experiences with me.

    Dear “I’m Just Saying”,
    By the “those” I am not referring to another Black Woman- I was talking to a Caucasian female who shared the same experiences within her own race. But it appears you blocked out anything else I said as far as testimonies and were too focused on making it about race.

    I do not write to offend. I write to share a point of view and an experience that you are at liberty to not agree with. But you took the time to read my words. You took the time to reply.

    “So you enjoy your United Nations style of dating and I’ll enjoy mine” —- Is your concluded salutation.

    Interesting that you feel as if I have tried to change your mind on your interest in Black Men. You are free to your own choices as anyone else.

    I never said I did not like BLACK men anymore. I simply stating that the experiences I have had, have made me less receptive to a certain TYPE of Black Man.

    I do not have to be an exotic anything to anyone as I did not say that I was even dating anyone in present time. Not every man that dates outside his race is looking for something “exotic”. There are those that genuinely are open to all people and see no color boundaries.

    There are people who don’t have to have the same cultural background to understand you. There are people with the SAME cultural background that do not understand one another.

    You found someone who understands you. That is great. God bless.

    And in reply to the picture- It is simply just a picture I found that featured inter-racial couples. It did not matter to me whether the man or woman was BLUE or GREEN.

    We as people are a made up of our experiences. No two people share the exact same experiences. So no two point of views are going to be identical.

    It is unfortunate that you misunderstood my post yet that does not concern me.

    I created a discussion, I created a thought, and I obviously created enough stir to get a response from you.

    My line of reasoning is not broken, just because I struck a nerve with you.

    Regards,
    Khalilah-Yasmin

  5. Well said, Khalilah.

    My interpretation of your words was that you were in favor of NOT judging others based on race. I did not take it as a statement that you would never date an African-American man again. The thought that you provoked for me was that some negative experiences in your life had resulted in you re-thinking some things regarding relationships and that this, in turn, resulted in you departing from an “automatic” dating of men within your own racial group. From the body of work available on your site, you have said that your heart responds to heart, your mind to mind, your soul to soul. These are the critical things that dictate whether a relationship will survive, make us happy and help us to grow. These are also the things that matter the most when the going gets tough, since no relationship is without its challenges. And these things have no race.

    I must respectfully disagree with some of “”I’m just saying’s” statements.

    “To sit here and pretend that your dating choices are not influenced by the negative portrayal of Black men in society and the media is ridiculous.” This statement presumes to know your mind and thoughts better than you do and is a judgement that is logically flawed.

    “To write out cultural connections, and focus on spiritual and mental (which are important too) is to undervalue any ethnic groups experiences.” This sounds not enlightened but condescending. Awareness of our racial cultures and history is essential. However, our racial history can be seen as important information which explains some context of our lives instead of also making it a barrier to change our culture’s present moment and future.

    I respect “I’m just saying’s” journey to her realization that interracial relationships are not for her. I understand the comfort that can be found in the short-hand of common experience and how it “just feels right” for her. Finding the right partner is a great blessing.

    Some people, myself included, simply walk along a different path. There are so many things I have read about caucasians throughout history that affect some of my opinions about my own race. But not everything done by white men & women has been bad. I know this. As I stated above – I have experienced more giving and receiving of honest awareness with African-American women. To suggest that this exhibits racial bias or a fetish for exoticism is to judge me and take the position that I don’t know what is best for me.

    Again, Khalilah, I applaud that you put these thoughts out there. Each of your readers has asked herself/himself questions as a result. We each have our own answers. We don’t all agree.

    And that’s okay.

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