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Living Single: Is it really the choice of many African American women professionals?

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Yesterday in New York City, I was among a distinguished group of African American Women who for various reasons find themselves single.  We were all invited to participate in an NBC online video segment that asked us to share our opinions on the topic (It will also air on television in over 40 affiliate cities). NBC along with many other media outlets are looking at the disproportionate numbers of African American women who are single.  According to , “In the past fifty years, the percentage of African-American women between 25-54 who have never been married has doubled from 20% to 40% compared to just 16% of white women who have never been married today.”   Yesterday, the panelist offered everything from demanding jobs, lack of spiritual/religious connections to long term relationships ending before matrimony as some of the reasons why so many of us are single.  While others proclaimed that being single brings them sincere happiness, “slim pickings” is a reality.  Fewer and fewer African American men attending/finishing college, has resulted in less of them matching or exceeding the same professional levels of their African American counterparts and, the rise in interracial marriages also makes it more difficult for racial/cultural loyal women to find a man.*

I found myself representing a very small minority of women: the six figure making single mom, over 4o ( just by a year OK?).  Putting all that aside, I have to say that I am no different from most single women out there who is waiting on the balcony for her dark knight in shining amour to come to her emotional rescue .  One of my comments yesterday was “chivalry shivers me”.   Believe it or not, there is nothing more attractive to me than a man who takes the lead and plans exciting and thoughtful ways for us to spend time together.  So far, unfortunately, I have met some nice guys who have fallen short of my tall orders.  I have found one reason to have the audacity to continue hope for my knight to make an appearance-Michelle Obama.  The quintessential “I am every Woman”.  Sassy and classy, our first lady is a strong woman who has found an equally strong man to embrace her-unconditionally.   I know mine is out there en route . . .

To watch the segment click here

*Nearly two-thirds of African-American college undergraduates are women.  That is leading to a disparity in the number of African-American women who go on to own their own businesses.

Simone-Monet Wahls

Photo:  Michelle Mitchell



  • I am impressed with these fabulous women. Michelle Obama is a great role model. There is no reason for these women to be single.

    Love and marriage are spiritual things. There is a level of love that you must have in your heart to allow yourself the ability to recognize the mate that is for you. Your eyes and your intellect alone are not enough. When you are more spiritual about your mate, material things like his income, his education level and his ethnicity and color will not matter.

    There are plenty of men in the world when you look at things this way, and you are much closer to happiness as well.



    While reading this, voices bombarded my thoughts concerning the reasons why many women are single. Voice A says, “You set your standards too high”. Voice B says, “Men are intimidated by you, learn how to let a man be a man”, Voice C says, No man will meet your standards, you are living in a fairytale”. These are statements that may be very unsettling for some of us who may have a “no tolerance policy”. Is there such thing as setting standards too high in regards to looking for a significant other? and if so, how do we (can we) lower our standards without changing who we are, what we accept, and what we believe in?

    I whole heartedly believe, as women climb those stairs of success educationally,financially,emotionally,et cetera, we develop a “catch me if you can” attitude when dating is concerned. In other words, if you want me, come and get me, ( this signifying he has to reach the same amount of success as she, and be strong in all areas)…. this mechanism may not allow ALL men a chance. (including those men who may have skipped over the education stair, or fell down the financial stair) however they are capable of providing emotional love and support. How can we as women, continue to climb those stairs of success, without excluding the men who lack in some areas, but are strong in other areas?

    The response posted above states, “When you are more spiritual about your mate, material things like his income, his education level and his ethnicity and color will not matter”….Valid statement, however, society may not see the spirituality,sincerity, and authenticity behind a women confiding in a man who may not appear to obtain, or maintain corresponding success…How do we deal with this matter of needing to have something(someone) to show and prove?…….


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