Dating man white

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Our family is a classic case of women and the black men who left them versus the white men who stayed.

I remember being 6 and slapping my white uncle in the face to figure out why his face turned bloodred.

I had stopped knowing who to count out at parties or open bars, and so I winged it.

I found myself on a first date with a guy who was born and raised in Yonkers, with a family from El Salvador.

I wondered how men with such delicate bodies seemed to be the only ones who could endure the storm. We bought crop tops, tight jeans, and earrings so big that they touched our shoulders.

When my cousin on the all-black side birthed a baby girl whose father had become abusive, we took a long ride to a shopping mall. On the ride home we were quiet and I decided I would never date a black man as long as my feet touched this earth.

It felt too ironic; the first black man who I dated had left me in exactly the way that I feared.

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He rode skateboards and carried around napkins in his front pocket, a habit he’d learned from his grandpa.

He joked like friends from my hometown, but there was a newness to his voice that I didn’t know.

There was something about watching a black boy murdered from the comfort of my home that made me want to go out and love a black man as hard as I could, as though somehow it could resurrect the child in him.

I started dating my first official black boyfriend, a neuroscientist, shortly after.

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