Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Ask a Bougie Chick - She doesn't date dark chocolate


I'm so mad about this letter, I could throw something. Not my laptop because it's new. *flings ballpoint pen across the room and kicks over trashcan* I simply refuse to believe that in 2012 we are still coming at each other with the paper bag test. *sighs and picks up trashcan* Read this letter and weep with me. 
Hi Chele,
Serial lurker here. I'm a 22 y/o guy, college student in DC. I found your blog by Googling "What do Bougie People do?" Your blog came up five times on the first page. Hat tip for cornering the bougie market :). Anyway, I had the oddest thing happen to me over spring break and I wanted to share and get your thoughts on it. 
I've been seeing a girl (Cheyanne) since just before Christmas. She is very attractive, funny, intelligent and focused. When we started dating she kept saying over and over again how she didn't usually date guys like me. I thought she meant tall, handsome, smart, a catch in every way. (I'm joking but I'm not modest haha) Things were going well. She's from Charlotte and I'm from outside of Charleston so we drove home for spring break. I stopped in to meet her family and was supposed to stay for a few days.  
When we pulled up to her house she said not to worry if her parents didn't like me at first. I really couldn't think why except for the fact that I was dating their baby girl. When they opened the door and saw me, their faces fell and then I knew. I was dressed well, hair cut, and hadn't even said anything. They were all light-skinned, I'm very chocolately.  
I introduced myself and reached out to shake her father's hand and he hesitated and then shook it. Her mom took her into the other room and I could hear them talking. Her mother distinctly said, "He's too dark for you. You know how things are." Cheyanne said, "I know but I really like him." Her father waved me in the house and walked away. I turned around, set her bags inside the door and left. She called three days later and apologized. We got back to campus a week ago and I haven't decided if I'm going to see her. I want to see her but I'm not sure I should. 
It never occurred to me that colorism is still an issue to this level. Racism yes, colorism though? It's one thing not to want your daughter to date outside the race but outside the skintone too? She had mentioned an Indian heritage and being able to trace her family tree back to colonial days which I thought was cool but not if it means her whole fam is about not diluting the bloodlines with any darkies. WTH, Chele? Have you ever seen something like this before? I really like this girl but I don't think I'm ready to be her exotic experiment. 
-XinDC
Hey X. Sad to say I have. I'm on the caramel latte side of the brown skin scale.  I distinctly recall one of the mothers in Jack & Jill lamenting that my mother and brother were darker skinned and that I was the only one really "suitable". Suffice it to say, there were no more play dates at their house. I once dated a very light-skinned dude whose sister held a grocery bag to my face and told me to stay out of the sun before I met their mother. Can you say cut pile? On the flip, I've had someone implore me to get some sun because I was looking passe blanc. :-/

I've heard ignant women say they don't trust light-skinned black men because they think they are too pretty. I've heard men say they would only date dark-skinned girls because they are more authentically black. Suffice it to say they are still plenty of uber-ratchet thoughts, words and deeds about skin color out there.

I've dated everything from vanilla to double dutch espresso - wait, that made me sound a little sleazy plus coffee obsessed. What I mean to say is what's under the skin is mo' betta than the color of it. Sounds like she needs more work on her inner beauty.

Only you can decide if you like the girl enough to put up with whatever her color-struck issues are. I'm so confused - her parents don't hang out with any people darker than they are? Or they are okay to hang out with but not to date? For cause why? Maybe she's been extremely sheltered and doesn't know any better? (Hard to accept since she's in Charlotte and not a one stoplight town) The fact that her father hesitated to shake your hand suggests a pathology that runs deeper than the waters you might want to tread in. Plus it took her three days to call you and apologize? Doesn't sit well with me and I don't even know you. 

BougieLand, what say you? If you were X, what what you do? Thoughts, insights, comments? 

64 comments:

blackprofessor said...

NEXT!  Boo, life is short and you don't have time for this type of foolishness.

Anonymous said...

Move on. She seems very naive and her family seems very... Ratchet. If you don't get along with the family the relationship wont work.

Brainless said...

I don't comment often. I'm more or a lurker. I am white and usually date black men (of any shade). This made me furious. If anyone in my family dared to make a comment like this to me, near me, or behind my back about any man I date, friend I have, or stranger on the street I would promptly tell them to go to hell. Her family is lame and he can do better!

Mo said...

X, I say move on. Take this  from a dark skin sister. I have been dealing with this  my  whole entire life. As a matter of fact, about a month ago I went for a mixer and a guy told me and here are his exact words " I like my women  red bone and  good hair( I wear my hair short and natural)."  This is an educated brother working for one of the  best consulting firm in VA. So yes, it happens in all types of circles.

FullBloom said...

I am a dark skinned woman.  I have heard all my life that you are a "pretty black girl", then "pretty black woman", and yes the dreaded "you are pretty for a dark skinned sista".  Really?  Seriously??  It pains my heart that in 2012 this ridiculousness still exits.  We have much larger things to be concerned with (Obama 2012)!  I don’t describe/associate with people in terms of their skin color.  You are correct Chele that what’s underneath is so much more important that the skin color itself.   Relationships are hard enough.  He should walk away and learn from it.  Knowing that her family is that ignorant  is one obstacle.  Knowing that she obliviously has not found her Voice to stand on what she believes in (if she even knows yet)… speaks volumes and is a greater obstacle.

EvolvingElle said...

As one of my friends said, "Self-hate is a helluva drug."  X, you seem like a nice young man.  I wouldn't put any more efforts into trying to date this girl.  The fact that her father hesitated to even shake your hand speaks VOLUMES-listen.  Besides, is this the type of family that you would want to deal with the rest of your life??? (Yes, I know you're only 22, but look ahead.)  Move on; there are tons more women in DC would be lucky to have a guy like you (from the little I've read).  But don't try to date all of 'em, though. :)

GrownAzzMan said...

See, this right here is why I don't date white women. Wait they are black? WTH? Rocks with flip flops and what not. It is the year of our Lord 2012. I can't

Props for cornering the Bougie market Chele...

taut_7 said...

i'm not surprised by this post. people are definitely still color struck in 2012. i have a lot of friends from new orleans and when i tell you that men and women who are still looking exclusively for creole women are high. i'm dark skinned and i love my complexion. i love all shades of black women. if someone doesn't like me for me then its their loss.

Mike in NOLA said...

Yeah, I'm in New Orleans(born and raised), it runs deep here, seriously!   lol.   

CaliGirlED said...

*swallows bougie pill and waits for it to get into my system* Num yo ho reign gay key ohhhhhh

CaliGirlED said...

 You should have said, "And I like my men with good spirit and tact!" #EducatedFool

SingLikeSassy said...

Dear XinDC: I'm from Charlotte, too. My daddy's people are from South Carolina. I am medium brown (I think, people who know me can chime in if I'm misrepresentin'). My brother is darker,  sorta Shaq-ish complexion. In family reunion pics with my grandaddy's side of the family we look like like black dots next all the light brights could pass for whites.

But here's the thing: those people love us. They always ask about us, want us at the family reunion and so forth. They love us. I  tell you this story because I didn't want you to think all the lighter complected (yes I know that is not a word) folks in S.C. are like these people.

It sounds like this young lady's parents have an issue with skin color, but she doesn't or at least she's trying not to have that problem. I'm not sure it's fair to stop seeing her because of their issues, but I can see how you might not want to be bothered since they treated you so rudely when you brought their daughter home.

This is a conundrum. Good luck sorting it out.

CaliGirlED said...

 I have family in NOLA (well across the bridge) where one sister is light-skinned and the other one is dark-skinned. Guess who LITERALLY and without reservation was treated badly by their light-skinned green-eyed grandmother?...Broke my heart when she told me that and my Cali folks confirmed it. WTH??? I've never seen that woman the same, or the sister who played it up and treated her badly as well. SMH

CaliGirlED said...

X, I like your sense of humor! You didn't seem to let this get you too riled up nor break your confidence. That is good! As for her parents' ignorance and rudeness, that's not going to change, even if you "grew on them". Arrrgh. And if dating leads to marriage and marriage leads to children, who could very well look like YOU, then what??? Will they love them in spite of their color, and still not fully welcome you in? Will they love the one that's lighter more than the one that's darker?

Not saying what to do, I just know that when someone's parents don't like you (due to nothing you have done to them personally), that's a hard battle to fight, especially if they have major control and influence over their child.

Good luck!

Monica said...

I had to check the calendar to make sure that it is in fact 2012.  I'd leave her alone but, only you can decide what level of nonsense you can tolerate in your relationships.

 Colorism is something its participants tend to cling to like a life preserver in stormy seas. You can find someone who can appreciate your chocolatey goodness without the drama attached.

EvolvingElle said...

As a South Carolinian, I can relate!  Looking at my aunts/uncles/cousins, we make up all colors of the rainbow.  And we love each other because we're family, not because of what we look like. 

CaliGirlED said...

"Nam-myoho-renge-kyo" Thanks Brenda!...Now y'all know if I feel that again, I will be spelling some kind of way AGAIN! *hollers*

MsJamie14 said...

Definitely move on. You can definitely find more girls with qualities like Cheyenne's, without the stupid parents. Not sticking up for you and waiting 3 days to call is unacceptable.

Lady4Real said...

Ouch, this hits close to home. My husband is dark chocolate. Black Coffee no sugar, no cream. The stories I hear from him break my heart. His own mother throws shade his way. I remember her being so in love with me because, "she's so light." Once she got too intoxicated and said my sister would have been the better choice because she is so much lighter. We had words about this comment. It's sad to say that colorism is as alive and well as racism. My husband has told me the sad tales of dating woes, girls who wouldn't give him the time of day because he is dark as night, yet white women fall all over themselves to get to him. I am his only black girlfriend ever and the only black girl to expressly tell him how sexy and handsome he is.

X, drop her and go find you a woman who will appreciate you for you; inside and out.

Lady4Real said...

" just know that when someone's parents don't like you (due to nothing you have done to them personally), that's a hard battle to fight, especially if they have major control and influence over their child."

many things factored into my divorce but this right here was in the top three.

CaliGirlED said...

"Once she got too intoxicated and said my sister would have been the better choice because she is so much lighter."...Well I'll just be damned!!!

Jubi The Great said...

I really just don't understand this color-struck thing. My mom's family is super light, but also super poor, so there was no superiority complex there. My father is very dark & he was adament to raise us with a "all shades of Black are beautiful" mentality. I've dated all shades, tho some folks swear I tend to go for the darker brothers (I say hogwash to that tho). Whatever issues this girl & her family have, its up to them to get over them. I say move on to a woman who will love & appreciate you regardless of your skin tone.

Lady4Real said...

what really made this comment zing is the fact that my sister is mean, rude, irresponisible and unfaithful as I don't know what. I have known my hubby since 2nd grade, am the polite, bougie, funny, kind and caring one out of my mothers three girls I just so happen to be the darkest of the three of us, which is damn funny to me.

ClayJones said...

Born and raised in NOLA and it's no joke. Everything from skin color to eye color to hair texture is duly noted. Her parents don't worry me so much since they have little direct impact on your career and future plans but she gets several red flags. The "I never dated anyone like you comment" besides being crass is manipulative in that she wants to let you know that you should feel special for making the cut. Not telling you on the three hour+ drive down that her parents were "special" is another issue. And not running after you to explain/apologize.ask you to stay/come with you when you left her house is a third strike.

I'm sure she's cute but is she that cute? I say move on.

thinklikeRiley said...

 Umm yeah - Clay said what I was fittin ta say but nicer.
X - bounce.

blackprofessor said...

 You are killing me with the "year of our Lord 2012"!

blackprofessor said...

 I just know that when someone's parents don't like you (due to nothing
you have done to them personally), that's a hard battle to fight,
especially if they have major control and influence over their child. - This!

We have a winner! Family is in the top three reasons why folks get divorced after money and sex. 

Monica said...

Ain't nobody that cute.

Andrea M said...

"Sounds like she needs more work on her inner beauty.'
Case closed.

MidWestDominicana said...

*weeping* So we have to deal with this AND the Gingriches, Santorums, Zimmermen, et. al. PLUS still tussle with our own because they don't agree with the shade we are?  I must have missed the sign up sheet for "pick your hue" day. GTEFOH with that non-sense. 

I once had a boss ask me why my children were so pale....(Jesus holding mules). SMH

The delightful thing about anyone with melanin is the awesomeness in the range of shades and colors we have the privilege of being. It makes less than zero sense to judge or like/dislike or treat someone differently because of something they can. not. control. like their color. 

Lamesauce all day.

Christopher Collins said...

My daughter is LIGHT SKINNDEDED and she bet not ever pull a stunt like this.  It's crazy that you mentioned Jack and Jill because that type of stuff is very prevelant in bougie African American Society.  My advice is to leave her alone, but let her know why you mad son!!

Kalexander21 said...

I say he should drop her like a bad habit....

ShawnSoze said...

At 22, I sent people to the cut pile just on GP. Not that I advocate this type of behavior. Just saying. 
Might wanna move on.

Sweets said...

I've never understood colorism and when I ask anyone why they choose one shade over another I never receive an intelligent answer (sometimes it's no answer at all). 

Shade doesn't determine socioeconomic background, education, intelligence, personality, values, beliefs, morals...the list goes on and on.  It does, however, evoke deep-rooted issues that for many will never be healed.

Let her go.  You're dealing with an entire family swimming in this sea of ignorance and it's not up to you to try to pull the daughter ashore.  She'll have to stand up to her parents and save herself.  (Sorry about the water analogy, but you know what I mean)

ishtar_79 said...

Please leave those ignorant a$$ people in the wind.   I don't care what anyone says.  You date a family, not an individual. 

Marioned said...

Unfortunately, No surprises even in 2012.  Look at who many of the famous Black Folk  marry and date. It's no coincidence what Michael Jordan's fiance and ex-wife look like.  Many people claim they are equal opportunity daters but consciously or subconsciously they have a shade preference.  Many Black folk trying to make sure the offspring lighten up!  You often hear people brag about their  lightskinned offspring.  Sometimes it is subtle, but it is there.  It is reflected even in the comments here.  Sad to say.  

ishtar_79 said...

Also, I wonder if this chick and her family really have light complexions.  If you're anything darker than Alicia Keyes, light skinned you are not, so these high and mighty coloreds better be on the "passing" side of black with all this color nonsense.

TrulyPC said...

Colorism and racism are the same thing.   Both are derived from the same dysfunctional white supremacy thought process.  

X, there is a HUGE difference in being with someone that sees you and someone that sees a skin tone.  Colorism mentality is a hard thing to endure because it insidiously seeps into the conscience if you allow yourself to be around it.  If it were me I would bounce and tell her why and maybe that will help her grow.  

I have dated people without ever thinking about "a shade" although there were those that judged me by mine.  I don't tolerate colorism from any end of the spectrum.  Colorism runs deep for some folks in a way that I can't be bothered with at all.  #LoveAllShadesOfBrown

*Lights candle and exits humming We Shall of Overcome*

CaliGirlED said...

 Clay your three points are dead on!!! Dead.on.

CaliGirlED said...

"I once had a boss ask me why my children were so pale"...O_O

My brother alone has gone through so many shades in his life that it's crazy! He came out looking like a Japanese baby and can get to a dark brown in the summer months. My family ranges from very light to very dark. I think it's wonderful!

LMAO @ "pick your hue day"!!!

CaliGirlED said...

" You're dealing with an entire family swimming in this sea of ignorance
and it's not up to you to try to pull the daughter ashore."...THIS!!!

MidWestDominicana said...

TRUTH!!!

MidWestDominicana said...

Same here. My father is Dominican and medium/darker brown, my mother is AA and yellow/brown. Her family is all kinds of ethnically intermingled and nearly all of us have married "others" (my husband's heritage is Liberian & Basian).  I have an aunt who looks like she is from India and my grandmother was ALWAYS mistaken for caucasian. My brother and I look alike, but in the summer, he tans a deep red color and looks Native American, while I tan a yellowish brown Carribean color. It's so awesome to me that even with the 'shade' that we are today, it may change tomorrow or after a few moments of sun exposure. Being 'colored' is the best!

I was just admiring my son's beautiful tan yesterday. He and my daughter are very much on the lighter end of the scale, but when they play in the sun, they're so toasty brown looking. It's beautiful...all gradations.

Trey Charles said...

What part of the game...

 

Crystal said...

You're only 22, keep it moving!!! When you do let her know that you and her are no longer explain why.  This young lady needs to be schooled and brought out of 1950 and into 2012!!!!! 

AnthonyJ1167 said...

If I had $1.00 for every time I've heard a Black woman say "I looooooove me a dark skinned, brown skinned, choklat man"...I'd be rich.  Now everyone is up in arms because someone says the DONT like dark men? Whats the difference?

C Nelson said...

Life is entirely too short. Even if she herself has the best of intentions, you are never ever going to be good enough for her family, and that's drama you don't need.

My mother is East Indian and Black, and she's dark. Really dark, compared to her East Indian family (dunno what happened to the Black side of her family; we never really saw any of them.) My father is a light-skinned mostly Black man; I think the one thing my mother liked about *all* her children was that we're all lighter than her. That said, I'm not light enough to suit her. My nickname growing up was "Blackie baby." 'Nuff said. My siblings are all lighter. One sister has reacted to that by only dating men darker than herself. None of them can please my mother at all. The other sister and I date a range, but you should have heard what my mother had to say the first time she saw me with a man darker than me. Or, actually, you shouldn't have heard, which brings me to my point. If this girl loved you, she would have run interference for you and not let you walk into that unprepared, let alone without warning her parents to be on their best behaviour. Yeah, that's harder for daughters than sons in many families, but still.  Run away. 

GammasWorld said...

3 days before she called you?    Not before you got out of the driveway?   Her cord is not cut yet.   Move on before you get sucked into this ignorance.   I'm dark chocolate and I remember distinctly a man lighter but not damn able to pass for white lighter tell me I was the first dark girl he'd ever considered dating like I was supposed to be honored that his to' down broke, "unemployed right now" living with his daddy azz deemed me worthy of his time.  GTFOH.  Move on young brother.  Don't even hit it and quit it.  MOVE ON.  Too many cute, intelligent women in your age range that you don't have to take on this extra burden.  Hell this world is tough enough ... you want someone who's got your back, not measuring how much sun you got at the pool.  

GammasWorld said...

This is wisdom young bruh .... listen and absorb. 

rozb said...

 Take your time to meet someone who has no issues cutting the ties to some dysfunctional crap. We all have heard the light-skinned v. dark-skinned thing (no bueno on the TJ Cruise - main reason why I won't go), and unless she tells her parents to kick rocks and go 'head with that shiggity, you will be fighting that battle the whole time you are with her. Tell her to grow up and be a woman about hers, or she will be living in a skin-tone prison for the rest of her life.

rozb said...

 Anyone who says Black folks can't be racist is living under a big-assed rock.

rozb said...

You shoulda stayed and got busy on the kitchen counter around breakfast time. Let them come downstairs to see how coffee really percolates. I'm just sayin'...

Leo the Yardie Chick said...

Life's too short for b.s., especially skin tone b.s. Keep it moving, Sir, and godspeed.

Leo the Yardie Chick said...

 Don't forget the 'good/pretty hair'. That's a whole topic in itself.

tiffanyinhouston said...

Baby, leave all those inmates at their asylum. You did the right thing by leaving old girl right there.

I'm not even all that light and I'm gotta the "what are you mixed with?". Um...Negro and Negro. And then I married dark chocolate. Me very happy...and him taste good too!

*shuts door tightly on the way out*

Leo the Yardie Chick said...

Couple more points:

1) It's not the first time I've read about colour-struck folks at the Jack and Jill Club, Chele. I'm sure it won't be the last, either. *le sigh* Even in groups meant to help black folk socialize in an often stressful environment, the colonial mentality is still present. We need an exorcism for that demon, pronto! S/he's been around long enough.

2) Don't these paper-bag test people know that genes work in mysterious ways? Those dark-skinned genes they're trying so hard to 'breed out' are still in their DNA. All it takes is for one generation of a Latte x Latte pairing with recessive Espresso traits to make an Extra-Strong Espresso child (just keeping it in line with your coffee analogy, Chele). What are they going to do then? Give the dark baby up for closed adoption, and tell outsiders that they had a stillbirth?

CaliGirlED said...

"Her cord is not cut yet....Hell this world is tough enough ... you want someone who's got your back, not measuring how much sun you got at the pool."...I love me some Gamma!

CaliGirlED said...

Gangsta!!!

CaliGirlED said...

You're so bad! LOL

CaliGirlED said...

Yeah Leo like that Black couple in London (I believe) who had a white baby! DNA proved it was the husband's baby!

mutemia said...

Run far far far away. She and her parents showed you who they really were for a reason. I mean hypothetically even if she got herself together and ya'll decided to get married and had kids would you really want to bring  them around that ratchedassedness. Send her to the cut pile with a quickness.

C Nelson said...

 There are a mixed-race couple (each parent has one black parent and one white parent) who had twin girls -- one white, one black. DNA is awesome.

Beignet Mamas said...

My husband and I are both from Louisiana, and our families are a mixture of shades.  When our daughter was born last year we had a family member to tell us, "I'm just gon' say it, I am SO glad she was born light!"  smh...
 
X, you are a 22 y/o college student in DC - believe me when I tell you that you will have NO problem finding someone new. 
Now, I'm not trying to be messy, but just for kicks, I think you should email the link to this post to old girl AND her mama and daddy if you can get their email addresses.  I'm just sayin...

Jeannette said...

Black folks are just catching all types of hell in 2012 huh? Just no rest for the weary! 

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