As a culture, we have struggled with this thing call love. For decades we have had to fight the hardest to keep our love strong and pure. But why is it that as a culture our love stories seem to be unpure, vague, and impossible? Why are we so afraid to love hard and show emotions that build a foundation for our children? Why are we waiting until we have become forty or fifty years old to finally say, “enough is enough” let us do this thing called, love?
The first encounter of what I know to be genuine black love was with my grandfather and grandmother, Herbert and Susie Hamilton. My grandparents illustrated love for each other daily!! Each morning my grandmother would cook breakfast for us and he would come downstairs and grab her from behind. He would give her the biggest kiss and smack her on her butt. She would always say the same thing each morning, “stop it Herb” with a giggle and smile. This went on for as long as I could remember. He always brought a candy bar home for her (and us of course) when he got off work. They still had sex, yes sex, at their older years until he became ill with cancer. I’m sure you are asking, “how do you know that?” Let’s just say, I know for a fact they were hahaha!!! They were openly affectionate in public and private. Even when the day ended, they would cuddle up with each other in bed and watch my grandmother’s favorite shows such as Quincy, M*A*S*H, and Dallas. They never went to bed mad with each other. This went on until their death.
My grandfather didn’t have any problems illustrating affection for his wife. He never felt less of a man by catering to my grandmother. My grandmother didn’t mind catering to him. He genuinely loved her, and she loved him. It was okay for them to focus on their love for each other even when there were storms in their relationship. No one could deny the love they had for each other. They were also together since they were young adults. Their love blossomed early in life. With that being said, why does it take a series called Black Love, to illustrate to the world that our love exists?
Black people can fall in love with each other. The problem occurred when outside factors came into the mix, such as social media and reality television. When our culture and society glorified our black women as sex objects, junkies, and whores instead of the beautiful queens that we are healthy relationships took a backseat. When black men became afraid to love because they would be called a pussy, whipped, or less of a man for actually showing healthy emotions of love and respect for a black woman caused our culture to hit a roadblock. When black women and men blamed their previous relationship horror story on every person they came into contact with, put a monkey wrench into the mix. Lastly, when parents and peers engrained in their children’s minds that men should have sex with a plethora of women just to be considered a man, and women should be independent and less romantic until the right time comes to settle down, caused time to be wasted.
Why not allow the feeling of love? Having someone that is your mate, lover, and friend is a beautiful thing. Being able to unmask your true self with someone that understands you helps you to grow into a better person. Loving someone brings out the best in you. If we illustrated more love for each other, then our children will learn and appreciate the importance of a healthy, loving relationship. By showing our children and others that love is possible and appreciated would diminish the bitterness that so many experiences with this thing called love. Black love isn’t a fairy tale but very much real and appreciated. Stop being afraid of it and embrace it. We have come too far to love each other less. Create more unions of black relationships and be proud of it. Glorify the love our culture has within. Don’t be afraid to love your partner wholeheartedly. Dismiss the negativity associated with loving your family, mate, and children as if they are your lifeline. We should deter ourselves from what society has labeled our love to be. Open your hearts and mind up to the beauty of what black love has to offer. You may just fall in love with it.