Scandal is usually the highest-rated show on Thursday nights, drawing an average of 8.9 million viewers. I like the show, not as much as I used to, but women, especially African American women love it. Why? One, because Scandal tackles interracial relationships that is rarely seen in mainstream media. The Jefferson's, Tom Willis and Helen Willis where trailblazers in this arena, but the theme of their union focused more on race relations than sex. This is where the excitement of Scandal comes in. Secondly, African American women love the show because as highlighted in a HuffPost article, for once women like Olivia Pope are seen as a woman that are wanted, lusted after, fantasized about, and more importantly loved, not objectified, or regarded as just a sex toy.
Dating for African-American women in 2014 has been challenging. Not only is it a challenge for some of you to find a man of the same race that sees you as the entire package, when you open yourself to dating that Fitzgerald Grant, especially online, OKCupid.com reports you might not even get a response.
My advice, if you are still looking for your Scandal-like relationship, don't give up! It only takes one match to make a connection. If you get a chance to develop a long-term, lasting relationship that leads to marriage with a man of another race there are some key differences that you may have to inform him about that won't be discussed on the show. Instead of giving you some helpful tips, I spoke to my sister-in-law who is engaged to a Caucasian man to give you perspective. Here is what she experienced and it is told from her point-of-view.
So, there are a lot of things my future hubby and I share — an unreasonable and all too often unfulfilled obsession with the Knicks, and an endlessly fulfilling obsession with Law and Order, especially the Chris Noth years. But there are some fairly interesting ways in which we are different too. While I was raised by a divorced and struggling single mother, my hubby-in-training was raised in an upper middle class home with two professional parents, who recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.
He is a precise person who checks his facts when telling a story; I'm more concerned with well...telling a good story. He's got a doctorate in nuclear physics, I majored in photography. And oh yeah, one other little thing...he's white and I'm black. Now don't get me wrong, from the Brady Brunch to Married with Children, I have been living in white America my entire life. After all, my immediate family were the only other black people who lived in my neighborhood. So, I'm more than familiar with white folks and their ways. But the intimacy of living with someone of a different race makes itself known in all kind of weird ways. Here are a few of the biggies you should be ready for.
Now many of your modern, progressive, educated black families have moved away from sending their kids out pick out their own switch. (Lord, do I remember those summers down South!) But you all know black moms still have that patented "look" that is almost as effective. White families are different. They talk to their kids. Their children's friends call them by their first names. Their kids are given autonomy, and empowered to make their own decisions. This is probably where I bite my lip the most with the hubby-in-training. But there is just no way I would be running the streets of New York City at 17-years-old without my mother knowing exactly where I was, who I was with, she would've met their parents and issued an iron clad curfew of 11 p.m. at the latest.
They cook different foods. Seriously, besides the turkey, nothing is the same. Their sweet potatoes come in a casserole with marshmallows, not in a pie. They make their stuffing with corn bread not the Pepperidge Farm bread cubes. And they have no idea what a giblet is or what to do with it (I might not either, but my mom sure does!)
The Hair (Oh, yeah...you knew it was coming)
Let's just be honest here. White people, especially white men, do not understand our hair. They do not understand the time and effort involved, and the number of products purchased, which is not only a mystery but a source of amazement. While on some television shows the white women can use "I'm washing my hair" as an excuse to stay home, for black women it's a totally legitimate way to spend 3 or 4 hours.
And oh yeah, you know its love the first time you pull out the satin wrap. For the first couple of overnights, you'll grit your teeth, lay your head down on that cotton pillow and hope that a hot oil treatment the next day will make it all okay. But eventually one night turns into a weekend and you are going to brunch the next day and you just have to pull it out, wrap it up, and hope you look a lot cuter than you think you do.
But with all that said, my blond haired, blue-eyed Jewish man and his kinky haired, brown skinned, lapsed Baptist wife-in-training have the most important thing in common: Love. And if this is Scandalous, I will take it every time!