The Black Family: Living in the Illusion of the White Lie
For those who know me, it is no secret that I believe that the restoration of the black family nucleus is paramount to the true elevation of the black race in America. The black family, and its core values have been decimated by abandonment and betrayal. With such distance and animosity between the two principal elements of our greatness — our men and women — we are facing a dilemma. We must determine how we will move beyond living in the illusion of the lie.
We Have Been Bamboozled
When anatomizing the conundrum that blacks face in our fight to rise above our current state, we must first realize that we have been sold a corrupt and erroneous bill of goods. We have been consistently and systematically fed a corporate lie that is complex in nature. The multitudinous facets of this monumental lie are far too many to attempt to deal with in this short treatise; however, I will endeavor to illuminate one aspect that has caused more damage than any other.
I often speak of the requisite for blacks to establish an economic center through which we can practice black vertical group economics for the purpose of overall empowerment; however, it would be remiss to overlook the elephant in the room that has been ignored for decades — the disintegration of the black family nucleus. The black family has suffered due to a thirst to live inside of an illusion created by the lie I mentioned earlier.
Our Women Misled and Redirected
I will address our women first, because although their contribution to the disintegration of the black family is significant, it is easily understood. Because of the power of mental conditioning, a significant amount of women who read this will not receive it. That is understandable. I simply ask you to consider what is written, then challenge yourself to prove it wrong beyond the acquiescence to your emotions. In other words, take the time to conduct the necessary research to establish that point you believe. It is my belief that the genuine journey for truth and the elevation will illuminate paths that you have never been trodden.
There are some of my brothers who would say that the feminist movement was the greatest distraction for the black woman. I will definitely not argue that the feminist movement caused great harm to the black family, but there is something much more subtle and sinister lurking in the undercurrent of our struggle. It is the illusion of the perfect man; the knight in shining armor. The six-figure brother who has it all together.
Over the last forty years, the black male-female relationship has been romanticized. With authors, such as Carolyn Zane, Rochelle Alers and others, flooding the book shelves and digital libraries with novels that portray men that have no weakness, flaws nor baggage. There has been an illusion created that sets the standards and expectations of women. Without even realizing it, black women have developed unrealistic expectations that black men in America cannot possibly live up to. Please understand that I am not suggesting that a black woman should be willing to accept a man who does not have a vision for his life and is not willing to fight to lift himself up to the level of his design, but I am saying that consideration has to be given to the entire dynamic of what it takes to develop a black man, especially in America. Again, this treatise is not meant to be comprehensive, nor is it designed to create 100 percent lucid perspicacity of the problem. I want you to think. There is obviously a problem, and pointing the finger at the other person has not worked out so well for us.
These awesome novels and movies that we see set our expectations. For women, it gives them their check list. Allow me to pose a rhetorical question. How many of you ladies have met a man who filled your checklist, but when you got with him, there were still issues? I can guarantee you that the vast majority of you have to admit that this is true. When I conducted the research for by book, “When Your House is Not a Home,” the numbers that I unveiled concerning black relationships were absolutely staggering. We lead the nation in divorce percentage. We lead the nation in single parent household percentage. We have developed a syndrome in which successful black men are no longer looking to get married, and those who are have determined that it is best to marry outside of their race. We have problems.
Here is one of the problems. The romanticizing of the black male-female relationship has supplied our women with the wrong questions to put on their checklists. Instead of inquiring about his bank account, home, and career, the questions should be more vision oriented. Instead of asking a man where he works and lives, a woman should simply ask him what the vision that he has for his life is. Where he works and lives tells you where he is at, but his vision will bring illumination to where he is going.
This is important because the woman will play a significant role in this man’s vision. This is another area in which women have been misled; they are looking to find men that have it all together when they meet them. The truth is that there will be certain things that the man will not achieve without the women to incubate it and give it life. If you meet a man who does have it all together, be certain that you are entering into a situation in which another woman nurtured and brought his vision to life. Be careful. You need to do your own nurturing. You need to give birth to your own situation.
One of the problems facing black women now is that they don’t want to endure the filling of their spiritual womb to birth the greatness in man. They want a ready-made man like the ones they read about in books and see in movies.
Black women, it is your spiritual womb in which the seed of a man’s vision is placed, incubated and birthed. You are the life source of his greatness. In the same way that his seed fertilizes the ovum in your natural womb and over 40 weeks returns to him his progeny, you must allow him to plant within your spiritual womb his vision and dreams. You must then incubate them and birth them — giving them spiritual life. He will know what to do with it from there. There is no bond more powerful that the spiritual bond created during this process.
Our Men are Lost, Confused & Frustrated
The problem with our men runs emphatically deeper. It finds its origin in the bed of slavery. Don’t get me wrong, there are issues that black women have passed down through generations that have their seed of origin in the bed of slavery as well; however, I feel we need to deal with one issue at a time.
White slave owners understood the strength of any group of people was their leadership — their men. The men in any society offer providence, protection and leadership to their women and children. When you remove the man’s power to lead, you can weaken the people and ultimately break him. This is done primarily by interfering with his primitive need to protect his woman. That was the first thing that the white man did — ravage our women while we watched. They killed any of us who attempted to interfere.
After initiating the breaking process by raping our women, they returned our violated queens to our bed to finish the process of breaking us. How often would she remind him of his failure to protect her? How often would she tell him that he is not half the man that massa is?
Unfortunately, it did not stop there. After the incredible yearning of a man to protect his woman, comes the desire to nurture and protect his progeny. The white man used black men as breeding mechanisms, then to stop them from bonding with their seeds, they would sell them off to the next plantation owner for them to breed with other women. The black man learned to disengage from the connection to his progeny. He learned to see the black woman as the conduit of sexual pleasure, and little more. He learned to expect to have kids in multiple households by multiple women.
The psychological bonds associated with this behavior have created an environment in which far too many of our men have found it to be an acceptable course of action to procreate and then abandon our progeny, while even more think it to be acceptable to take a misogynistic approach in dealing with our women. No, I am not insinuating that most black men are trifling and sorry; that would be an erroneous assertions; however, I would assert — based on the exceptionally high divorce rate, and the number of single parent households, that we have collectively abdicated our roles as leaders, protectors and providers.
We have created some enigmatic and challenging situations that we retain responsibility for. A significant amount of us have children in more than one household. We have bought into the lie that our only responsibility is a check every month and periodic visits. That is simply unacceptable. We owe our women and children so much more. It is our responsibility to be present in each home that we have fathered a child. For those of us who have fathered children in more than one home, this will be challenging, but we created the situation and we must own the responsibility that is associated with it. This extends beyond your financial responsibility to your child, and it absolutely includes the mother, especially if she does not have a husband covering her.
The mother of your child became your family and your responsibility the moment you planted your seed in her womb. No matter how much she declares that she does not need you, regardless to how hostile she may be toward you, she is still your responsibility. So, you need to make your presence felt in that home. There is no excuse. If she won’t allow you to come by, find a way to get them the things they need — her included. You are about to take a crash course in true responsibility, and the first thing that you are going to learn is that it is not about you. This is bigger than you and her. We must set the example.
Ladies, this goes for you as well. He may be a jerk, but if he is putting forth the effort, don’t marginalize his efforts. This sends the wrong message to the child. If he is strapped for cash, allow him to make his presence felt in other ways. Whether you understand this or not, the more you display that you have confidence in him, and the more support you offer, the more you will see him press to do better. It is in his DNA, he responds to your affirmations, not your assaults and insults. You have to understand that there is nothing stronger and more resilient on this planet than a black man. In fact, the only thing that has the power to break a black man is a black woman whom he loves.
His heart rests with her, but if she shows him contempt and disrespect, it will drain him. It will cause him to withdraw in order to move back to a position of comfort and safety from the pain. Trust me, you don’t want this, because it will be the child who pays for it the most.
In response to a question concerning the strength of a woman, I once wrote: “They say that behind every good man is a good woman; I prefer to say that behind every great black man is a great black woman. Do you know why she is great? She is great because she knows his weaknesses, but instead of using them to degrade him or ridicule him, she comes along side of him, and as his missing rib, she covers his areas of vulnerability, allowing him to rise up and walk in his vision with the confidence of knowing that if he falls, she will still be there with him.” We need that great black woman to resume her role in the black community.
We need black men to shake free of the egocentric mindset that has caused us to abdicate our thrown. We need to cover our women with the magnanimous gift of unadulterated love. We need to shelter our children from the pernicious attacks of a system that is designed to devour their hopes and dreams.
My people, it is time to shake ourselves loose from the psychological bonds of slavery. It is time to exercise the demons of our past. No matter what you have been through, it is time to let it go and move forward. It is time to understand that this life is not about you; it is about you living in your purpose. It is time to usher in a brighter tomorrow for the next generation. It is time to rebuild the black family. This is about you living at the level of your design. It is about the unity and the elevation of a great person. We have been at the bottom too long. The time for change is now! ~ Dr. Rick Wallace, Ph.D.