Do You Date Outside Your Race?
I've got to admit, I've never dated anyone outside of my race. I did have a serious summer crush on my very Jewish co-counselor at leadership camp during high school, but that was about it. Oh, and I have a major TV crush on the actor Bryan Greenberg (Don't ask).
I'd never really thought about it much and it certainly wasn't intentional until recently at a post-theatre lunch with my girlfriends, I was questioned about fully exploring my post-divorce dating options.
As it turned out, a few weeks prior a very nice older gentleman, dressed like Ralph Lauren and reading the New York Times approached me on the New York City Lexington Avenue bus, of all places.
I saw him on the bus and we both exited at the same midtown stop. When he approached me, told me I was beautiful and asked if he could take me to dinner sometime, I started looking around for the candid cameras. Or Ashton's PUNK'D van.
I smiled--a combination of graciousness and shock, said thank you for the compliment, took his business card and went to my meeting.
I was wearing one of my big handbags so the card was instantly lost and besides for the ego boost (thank God for those!) I didn't give it anymore thought.
Until I shared the story with my girlfriends, mostly for the laugh of being picked up by an older white gentlemen. Of course, they completely missed the point of the story and started grilling me on why I hadn't called him back.
I didn't have a good answer. Was I unconsciously avoiding dating men of other races? Or was I just not attracted to this man?
I did know this, any man I am with must have a keen understanding of what it means to be black in America, and be sensitive to my concerns about raising black children, and have a real (not stereotypical) view of black culture. For me, it's a big part of who I am.
The verbal assault I received from my girlfriends made me go home and rummage through my bag.
What did I have to lose?, they asked me several times.
About a $100 in babysitter costs just to have a dinner date, I told them.
When I found the card buried in the bag, and a lipstick I'd been searching for (yayy!) I went straight to Google.
He was a succesful securities lawyer with his own firm. Check and check. So far, so good.
The next week, I finally called. We met for drinks.
There was no chemistry for me (and the repeated invitations to his Hamptons house seemed awfully pushy) but I did it. I tried something new.
Am I the last person on earth to try dating across color lines? How has it worked out for you?