Whenever men who aren’t black ask me, “What’s it like to date a black woman?” I joke, “I’ve never dated one. Ask a lesbian.” For the curious and fairer-skinned among you, finally, your wait is over. Here is a simple list of Do’s and Don’ts for picking up brown-skinned women. Print it out and keep it in your back pocket:
DO keep it simple. If you have a friend or acquaintance whose ethnicity doesn’t match yours and you’d like to ask them out, say something like: “Hey, what you are doing on Friday? We should hang out.” Yep, my sweeties, it’s that easy.
DO have an open mind. People are such unique and interesting creatures. We all come from different ethnicities, economic classes, educational backgrounds, religions (or not) and regions of the globe. Of course, we’re all raised by totally different, crazy families. As a result, we each have very specific ideas about how the world works. When dating anyone, regardless of background, be prepared to brush up against ideas that may or may not run counter to your beliefs. In that case, resist the urge to think your way is automatically “right” and theirs is “different” (read: wrong). You might learn something new.
DON’T overcompensate. Rattling off endorsements like “I’ve always loved looking at black women,” “Latinas are saucy,” or “Indian women have such great skin” will only make you look like an ass. On a related note, under absolutely NO circumstances should you bust out in a spontaneous freestyle rap or vulgar phrases in another language to prove how “down” you are. [Le sigh. If I had a dollar for every time … ]
DO be truthful. Should the topic come up, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with saying, “I’ve never really had a(n) ___ girlfriend or anything before because ___.” Chances are pretty good the target of your affection will respect your honesty. By the way, on a related note, don’t lie. No one likes to be led on. So, if you don’t really want to hang out or date a woman of color but you’d just like to hook up with one, there are plenty of places and opportunities to do that. Place an ad on Cragislist, Tinder or raceplay communities.
DO treat the object of your affection like a human being. Duh, right? As a general rule of thumb, ask yourself: When someone hangs out with you, who do they expect to show up? Tip: If you answered “you” instead of “your ethnicity,” you’re right. I could be completely loony and totally off base with this, but I think most people want to be cherished, loved, cared for, and desired for who they are. So, it’s kind of impossible for me to provide an exhaustive list of what works for every woman because each is very different. Your woman will have her own unique interests, likes, dislikes, values and expectations. Spend a little time getting to know her.
Twanna A. Hines is an award-winning educator and sex columnist. Follow her on Twitter @funkybrownchick.