Despite the fact that “How Feminism is Ruining Your Love Life” traffics in the worst kind of stereotypes around black feminism, we want to respond in the spirit that we’d like to think the original piece was intended. The stated goal of the article is to help sisters, albeit those who have “misguidedly” used “radical black feminism” and, as a result, are single, or rather, man-less. Unfortunately, in the guise of helping folks who have been led astray, this piece will undoubtedly lead some sisters down a road to perdition and to a world of hurt. When it comes to sisters’ lives, we don’t play. And for that reason, we are also gonna keep it CRUNK.
- Not all women want a man. Some of us want women. Some of us want (multiple) men. Some of want to be, and are, gloriously single. We can experience intimacy in multiple ways. Black women are complicated. And, lowkey, calling single sisters “mules” because they are holding it down by choice or circumstance—well, that ain’t what Mother Zora had in mind.
- Femininity? How about femininities (and masculinities)? There are multiple ways to be a black woman. See #1. (Also, 1892 called. They want their old-ass notions of Black womanhood back.)
- It takes a village, not only to raise a child, but also to be(come) a fully actualized human being. Perhaps sisters wouldn’t have to work so hard if we got rid of this patriarchal hierarchy in which female friendships come last. Sister-friends and other forms of family need not necessarily compete in one’s life. (Relationships should not in fact be user-friendly. Beware of any sister that puts her girls on a DVR plan—i.e., pauses them at will, fast-forwards through the inconvenient parts, listens to and makes time for them only when she has nothing better to do on a Saturday night, etc.)
- The “How To Get A Man Checklist Meme”= #Fail. Like majorly –and if a list about finding a partner doesn’t include attention to things like shared interests, politics, goals, etc., but is (yet another) checklist on what sisters don’t (read: never) get right and what we need to fix about ourselves then, frankly, it’s the last things sisters need. Can a day go by when there is not a pejorative list of do’s and don’ts for black women? (Seriously, this author sounds like the love child of Scheherezade Ali and Steve Harvey; T.D. Jakes is the Godfather, and Daniel Patrick Moynihan officiated at the shotgun wedding, where Tyler Perry was the videographer.)
- Formenism =#setup; Feminism=#comeup: Formenism is the misguided belief (read: sexist man’s wet dream) that giving in to every traditional and stereotypical gender role for women will guarantee that you get a man and live happily ever after. That is, you will happily submit while T.I.’s “You Can Have Whatever You Like” plays in the background. There is however a catch…
- It’s hard to yell when the bedrail’s in your mouth! (We told y’all it was a setup!) So, um yeah, giving women contradictory messages (“a ho is a ho is a ho” but don’t be a prude) about sex is unhelpful. No one is saying go fuck with reckless abandon. But don’t abandon your desires when you fuck. We advocate responsible, fulfilling sexual activity. Why?: cuz we grown. And cuz sex is not just for men. Women want it too. And they should be able to get it on their own terms. No apologies. Wonder how that, “hey you should just conform to the sexist sexual double-standard cuz that’s how it is” would’ve worked on the whole slavery and racism thing? And in case you hadn’t heard, Black feminist sex is the best sex ever. Even scientists agree.
- For the record: there are plenty of sisters out here looking for a dude to be the head of her family, while she serves as his willing “helpmeet” and she isn’t having any more luck than the rest of us. Can’t blame that on feminism. Try again.
- Madame Noire might as well be called “Misogynoir” if it’s gonna publish this kind of ish, which promotes dangerous messages about black women in the name of our welfare. We deserve better. #shutitdown
Real talk: we acknowledge that the original piece speaks to a sort of disgruntled feminism, the kind that might occur among sisters who played all their feminist cards right and still don’t have the (progressive) man to show for it. We feel your pain, truly. But asking us to turn a caustic, critical gaze back on black women, rather than to take a good hard look at the systems that perpetuate patriarchy, sexism, and the like is unfair and damaging. As CF Eesha put it, “Feminism is not about ‘living your best life.’ It’s about de-centering yourself so that we can all live our best lives.” And, as CF ReninaJ broke it down, “Feminism is not about being equal to men… We need to be clear about who we want to be equal to. In fact, we need to ask do we want to be equal or do we want to be free?” At the end of the day, advocating that sisters seek out traditional marriage roles denies the fact that Black women and their partners, be they men and/or women, have been creating multiple models of partnership, family, and love for a very long time. Going backward to a way we never were is not an option; as our sisters at QBG say, black girls are from the future.
Crunkadelic & Crunktastic