Falling Like The Rain: We Ain’t Running Out!

Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking around the idea of “scarcity”.  In psychology and economics, the Scarcity Principle describes our urge to obtain something that we believes we may not be able to get in the future.

In the economy of human relationships, the media treats single Black men as a “scare commodity”.  Within this paradigm, Black women are conditioned to believe that the quality partners they are looking for are a rare and limited resource.  However, I would  like to offer a bit of critique of this now widely held and statistically backed perspective.  I am concerned that this narrative only amplifies the problems for men and women in the dating pool.

News Flash:  Men are falling like the rain.  We are in no danger of running out, despite what any number of blogpost, news reports, and articles in women’s magazines will tell you.  They will cite numerous measures around the number of Black men who are in prison, exclusively dating outside the race, or homosexual.  For instance, this article on mybrotha.com states there only 27 available Black men available for 100 Black women. The statistical soundness of this dataset is more than questionable, but for all the barriers to finding a partner; I am not readily convinced that it boils down to a sheer numbers game.

I believe what is required is a paradigm shift by Black women en masse. If we continue to treat the identification of a quality partner as a desperate endeavor—grounded in jealousy and competition—we are only fueling the spiral of scarcity.  In this environment, Black men who do not even have the characteristic or desire to build genuine or profitable relationships with quality Black women are reaping the benefits of being a valued commodity–without actually being one.

Accordingly, our dating marketplace has become Canal Street.  Canal Street is a notorious bastion of fake designer goods.  The public flocks here to purchase cheap facsimiles of exclusive items—like the elusive Birkin Bag.  The Birkin is a handmade purse by Hermès.  It is the ultimate symbol of wealth and privilege.  Birkins are released on unpredictable schedules and in limited quality creating scarcity in the marketplace.  Now Canal Street is full of knock-off Birkins.  These bags are not unique, handmade, or otherwise special.  My point: LADIES STOP TREATING THE KNOCK-OFF LIKE THE REAL THING.

In any situation where you have scarcity you have panic and acts of desperation.  Ladies we have to stop selling ourselves short, in order to obtain any kind of man.   Compromising your real desires for connection, authentic relationships, love, and good treatment only fuels the cycle of scarcity.  We have to be wise consumers to get what we really want: genuine relationships and authentic love.

Scarcity is tied to our survival instinct, but there are lots of good guys out here.  They may not be the Alpha male, or fly, or otherwise jiggy—but they do exist.  However, the marketplace will react to the way we interact with  it.  If as a collective, Black women decided to  diversify our markets, and more importantly set our own price to align to the real value we bring, we might get better outcomes.  If we treat ourselves cheaply, we are no better than the knock-off Birkin we so detest. I am making a call for us to stop competing with each other for minimal treatment, hurt feelings, and disappointment.  Let’s raise up our standard to get what we TRULY deserve: the kind of love that will hold us for a lifetime.


1 Comment

  1. Great analogies. I agree with the need for a shift in mindset. We can’t let others define our realities.

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