Most striking to me in recent sociological studies about interracial dating and marriage, is that on every measure, African American women seem to come out at the bottom of the pile.
Black people as a whole intermarry with whites less frequently than other people of color do; and black women intermarry far less than black men.
These relationships are caring and genuine, and surely bring happiness to the individuals involved in them.
Once I overheard my black boyfriend telling his buddies how he preferred white women; on another occasion (with a different black boyfriend) a guy told me he didn't care that I was breaking up with him because he could go out and get a white woman, which was what he really wanted anyway.
For both these men (and to be fair, they were not much older than 20 at the time and thus had plenty of maturing to do), white women were the pinnacle of womanhood -- the prize that they secretly coveted, the emotional weapon that they knew they could wield.
Two of my younger male relatives have recently been engaged to white women, and one tied the knot last summer.
This is a pattern that I have observed in my professional life for years: successful black men pairing up with white women, but now that the practice has come home to roost, so to speak, I cannot help but admit to feeling a bit demoralized.
While interracial marriage rates in this country have grown remarkably to 8.4 percent in 2010, Americans still marry within their own racial group the majority of the time.