About Young BW Determined to Live Well

After being a faithful reader of various blogs dedicated to positively influencing black women, I recognized quite a few young black women in their teens, 20's, and 30's who were touched by the message as much as myself. This blog is my attempt to reach out and connect with young black women on issues we may be facing at a very transitional time in our lives. I encourage all, irrespective of age, class, origin, etc. to participate in the discussions and brainstorming sessions we have. I look forward to the potential of this blog and hope to hear from Young Black Women Determined to Live Well like myself!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Are You a Social Climber? Do you aspire to be one? Take a look at this.

When I hear the term Social Climber, it forces me to pause and reflect on a number of experiences I have had. I will be the first to say that being labeled a social climber was considered insulting around the circles I was more familiar with during elementary, middle, and high school. However, in college, things are and have been for some time, extremely different. I have heard stories about social climbers on HBCU campuses, but at my PWI, social climbing is highly important. The difference is most people (this includes the general population of white students) go about things stealthily. I have chosen to be a social climber because I believe it will assist me in acquiring the lifestyle I seek to live. Everyone has different expectations of what Living Well means. Social Climbing may have nothing to do with Living Well for some of the young black women who read this blog. However, for those who do wish to seriously ascend in class and social status, I wanted to point you in the direction of a wonderful BWE blogger's new post:

Please do not allow some of the unfortunate comments from anonymous individuals to distract from what the post says. It could come in handy for many of the young up and coming black women who are determined to live well. Also, Sara explicitly mentions some of the tragic things happening to young black women around their last years of college, regarding unplanned pregnancy by a low-quality male (most often a black male at that). DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU LADIES! Bundles of joy are indeed adorable, and great to kiss and cuddle. BUT, children to unmarried, single, BLACK mothers suffer unnecessarily. The potential for them to live well is so low it cannot be mentioned here.

Interesting and potentially empowering find: I read a text on free colored women of the Americas and immediately zeroed in on the Story of a Creole (in this context, creole only meant an individual was born in the America's and not Africa, it had nothing to do with skin color or race as we know it today) slave woman and her interracial marriage to a British overseer in the mid to late 18th century on the island of Jamaica. Please be aware that North American scholars often fixate on rape being the only thing happening between black women and white men, but through my research of the Caribbean, the relationship between black women and white men is indeed quite complex. I certainly do not do justice to the story, but a very brief summary entails how this woman used her influence over this man to not only secure her eventual freedom, but the freedom of her children, and acquisition of economic wealth, including land ownership. In the harshest of times, this woman found a way to socially propel her way to a better life than the one she was born into, and I see no reason why I shouldn't be able to do the same. The book is called: Beyond Bondage, Free Women of Color in the Americas
edited by: David Barry Gaspar & Darlene Clark Hine
Check it out at your local library or campus library!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

"I'll have a little of everything please!"


Please read the article above ladies. It is a lengthy one, but don't let that discourage you from reading it in its entirety. It offers very provocative information, and is quite intriguing by my standards! Of particular interest is the section dedicated to interracial relationships. Now, if you didn't read that section of the article, what I am about to write, may not make sense to you. Just a heads up!
On to my thoughts. I agree with much of what she said in this article and found it very helpful and affirming. All sections had the "thumbs up" from me until I read the IR section. It had me feeling...shall I say...a little hopeless on the "young, black, single, woman" front. If we are to continue this "proof" among future generations, and those who could ensure that we create the "proof" are less than interested if at all, not on our level for the most part, and exist in drastically lower numbers than ourselves, then what are we to do? If Being in an interracial relationship does not qualify as being with our "natural" mates, and chances of arriving to the "proof" in interracial relationships are slim to none, then what is a young black woman to do?!

Oddly enough, this is where I felt the divestment concept may serve young black women well. By not holding ourselves to the obligation of reproducing the "proof" we are free to be with whom we want and are fully accepting of the consequences of the unions we choose to be a part of. In my heart of hearts, I would LOVE to have a little brown princess that favors her mother with kinky, coily, thick hair, bright brown eyes, and a charming and intelligent personality. But, if my future darling came into the world lacking all of those qualities except a charming and intelligent personality, I honestly would be fine with it. I mean, you could also say that a union with another black person could result in albino children? what then?

She addresses the common factor that contributed to the conclusion of her interracial relationships. Apparently, her continued interest in issues pertaining to black people did not fair well, because her white love interests wanted her to conform to their comfort zone. I question whether "black issues" were a black people thing or a black men thing, if you know what I mean. This is where I think reading the divestment series on the blog: blackwomenblowthetrumpet.blogspot.com come in very handy. These posts are a great place to start: http://blackwomenblowthetrumpet2.blogspot.com/2009/12/repost-free-agency-of-black-woman.html  and  http://blackwomenblowthetrumpet2.blogspot.com/2009/12/repost-annihilation-of-black-men.html
As young black women, especially those of us who choose to be in relationships with men or women of another race or ethnicity than ourselves, we will have to make changes in how we navigate a social landscape that is not comprised of solely black men and black women. Whether some of us are willing to make the necessary changes is a personal decision. For me, living well and passing that on to the future generations of my family, is a primary concern. Whatever I have to do to get there, will be done. period.

LIVING WELL: since we are on the topic of living well, I encourage all of you gorgeous young black women to think about financially educating yourselves. If that means purchasing the text, Personal Finance for Dummies, then by all means do it!. I think the website: http://www.kiplinger.com/ is a great place to start! Get your money right ladies. The economic decline in the United States and other countries closely tied to our economy is not a joke. In fact, according to the United Nations' 2009 report of the Millennium Development Goals, the financial crisis has caused their goal of eradicating extreme poverty by 2015 to seriously reverse itself. A goal of mine is to create multiple streams of income. Being dependent on one job alone just doesn't seem safe at all.

LIVING WELL: Have you all been keeping up with the headlines regarding the health care debate? PLEASE DO. It affects us just as much if not more. As young black women, we need to make sure that at least some part of the day or week is spent updating ourselves on what is happening in our government. I am currently under the same insurance coverage as my mother, which is provided by her employer. However, this won't be the case very soon and I have been researching different options for insurance coverage for my health. I am not ashamed to admit that I haven't had a real check-up at the doctors office for a while simply because I could not afford it, even with coverage! I don't plan on making this a habit at all. You shouldn't either.

ON A SIDENOTE: To add a little fun to this posting, I invite all of you to log on to the website: hulu.com and check out this new science-fiction show called, Flash Forward. Gabby Union is said to be paired with Asian Actor, John Cho, who is is indeed very handsome! Granted, I have been keeping up to date about the celeb antics of Ms. Union (D.Wade...hint*...not divorced yet...hint*...homewrecker accusations...yea.), but I do support the fact that our image is represented in a loving and feminine way with a man who is of a different race, which only serves to promote a positive image of young black women that benefits us in the long run. The storyline is very engaging as well. They have an entire website dedicated to the film! Take a study break ladies and catch up on the first two episodes if you can.

Till next time! I have great ideas for postings in the near future so please be sure to look out for those!