Written By: Paul Carrick Brunson "The Modern Day Matchmaker" for http://www.essence.com
Last week I taped a special one-hour episode of Dr. Drew’s Lifechangers (due to air soon) about the state of Black relationships. Throughout the show we covered many topics, and as you’ll see, at times it got very tense on stage.
That said, the overall point I made was that we need to be informed about relationship facts in the Black community. There is no brand of love more tarnished than Black love, and the way we change it is first by understanding the truth.
The following are facts that are very rarely discussed, but serve as a good jumping off point for a positive conversation about love in the Black community.
Black Women Find Love Online
According to recent interviews I conducted with CEOs of 2 of the largest online dating sites, black men and women are registering on dating sites at rates only behind baby boomers. This is positive news, given that online dating sites are the second highest source of marriages (1 out of 6 marriages begin online).
Black Marriage is the Strongest Kind
Five of the top nine countries with the highest marriage rate in 2009 were predominantly black countries: Jamaica, Barbados, South Africa, Ethiopia, and Antigua.
Most Black Women Will Marry
US Census notes the percentage of never-married black women 55 and older rose to 13 percent in 2009. This means 87 percent of black women will get married at some point in their lives.
Black Men Marry Black Women
Eighty-two percent of Black men marry Black women (compared to 62% of Asian American men and Hispanic men marrying within their race). Moreover, the interracial marriage gap between black men and women is actually narrowing. In the 1980s, Black men married White women at a rate of 3-to-1 compared to Black women with White men. In 2009, it narrowed to less than 2-to-1. (2008 U.S. Census)
Successful Women Are More Likely to Marry
The more education you have and money you make pretty much guarantees you’re much more likely to marry than a lower earning, less educated woman at a rate of almost 2-to-1. NYTimes.com
Black People Do Marry Each Other
Two-hundred and fifty three thousand annual new marriages are between African Americans. (2009 American Community Survey)
The Divorce Rate Is Not That Bad
We often hear that the divorce rate is approximately 50%, well this is incorrect. The divorce rate in 2010 was 48%, however, most interesting is when you analyze what happens to people who either date for at least 2 years and/or marry after the age of 25. At both of those points, the divorce rate drops to less than 25%. This suggests that when we don’t rush marriage (and spend time making sure we’re marrying the right person), divorce seldom happens. (Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missouri.)
The Obama's Aren't the Only Ones Making it Work
Did you know 3.6 million African Americans have been married for 10 years or more? (2009 American Community Survey)
Black Men Are Successful
In America, 725,922 black men earn more than $75,000 compared to 528,204 black women; 100,000 more black men earn more than $100,000 than black women; and black men are twice as likely to earn more than a quarter million dollars. Therefore, if we define success in terms of income, there is still hope. (Ivory A. Toldson, Ph.D., and Bryant Marks, Ph.D.)
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