So I decided to explore why I could love white men like family but not envision them as potential partners. Love for men who move through the world in ways that remind me of my father. A black man comfortable in his skin and walking in his purpose remains the ideal. There is also the fact that I was raised a good Southern black woman, albeit one freer than most.
Fear of being ostracized by those very same men or fetishized by their white counterparts. I grew up surrounded by handsome black men who were strong-minded, hard-working, upwardly mobile and worldly. At a home, it was understood that if Billy Dee Williams — not Paul Newman, not Richard Gere — should ever knock on our door, my mother was leaving with him. Still, as a rule, good Southern black women do not dishonor their communities or betray their history by willingly sleeping with white men. The same grace that is extended to black men who date white women is not as easily extended to black women who do the same.
In the world of gay online dating, your race affects your romantic and sexual connections, whether your potential partners realize it or not.
Systems of oppression based on race sometimes pressure queer men of color to lie about or hide their racial/ethnic identity in online dating spaces like Grindr in order to get positive romantic and sexual attention.
And, then there are the unspoken questions once inherent in any semi-intimate interaction with a white guy: Do you want to date me as a way to stick it to grandma?