The Dating Game – Pt. I

Could His Relationship With Mom Make Him Unable to Commit to Other Women?

Family, Featured, In My Opinion

I had a conversation with a friend of mine, a single man, about his single status and what challenges he faces with dating. He lives in New York, and I wondered whether his experience mirrored what I’ve been hearing here in Los Angeles. His primary concern is wanting to make sure whatever woman he’s with does not “dig for gold” and supports his 24 hour/7 days a week work ethic. I asked if he had ever come across a woman to fit his criteria. He replied, “I’ve had many good women that I’ve let go. In the back of my mind I always feel I can find someone even better.” I asked him why -why risk letting a good one go? He replied, “That’s how I was raised. Moms told me to run through as many chicks as possible.”

I had to think on this now that I have the opportunity to raise a young man of my own. As a single woman, I would hear these stories about mother’s advice to their sons and it would frustrate me. I couldn’t understand how a woman, who had previously been on the other side of things, could advice her son to run through women. Now, as a mother, I understand that perspective so much more. Part of it is a desire to protect the son from the wrong women (according to mom) coming at him aggressively and getting him caught up in a marriage or creating a child he isn’t ready for. Another part of it is the fear of knowing one day the son will grow up, and commit his life to a woman other than his mother. As a mom, you want that other woman to be someone you like, get along with, and who won’t try to separate you and your child.

Where does this protectiveness come from? Is it natural instinct? Is it a Black issue or does it affect mothers and sons of all races?

Earlier this month, an article was posted on asking the question, “Do Black Women Raise Their Daughters And Love Their Sons?” For many generations, the idea of Black mothers favoring sons over daughters has been discussed, and seen as an exercise within our community. To understand whether or not this is an issue that pertains solely to Black people, I decided to scan the text of the infamousĀ Let’s Make A Slave by Willie Lynch.

The section of the letter that discusses marriage amongst slaves advocates for slave owners to breed black males and females and then take the males away and allow the females to raise the babies from these unions alone. Lynch states, “Without the influence of the male image, the female will be frozen with an independant psychology…[the male] will be raised mentally dependant and weak, but physically strong…in other words, body over mind”. This claim made me think about my own upbringing and how the desire and need to be indepedent was taught to me very early by my mother who was a single parent for half of my life. I wondered if within a two-parent household, did the same atmosphere exist? And if so, are many Black men taught to be dependent on their mothers and therefore struggle with creating an emotional bond with other women?

Brothers, please speak on this topic – and know it’s not a judgement but a question. Let’s talk about this so we can begin to understand one another!

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