Dating across racial lines

The Memphis attorney had always talked about finding the Cliff to her Clair and having brown babies for a real-life Cosby Show family.

So when she met a White accountant from Mississippi online in 2013, got engaged to him in 2014 and married him in 2015, her friends were shocked."When he proposed, they were like, "We didn't know it was that serious. " I had people question if this was what I wanted," says Meador, who serves as general counsel and vice-president at a nonprofit.

Harvey Hargrove, Jr., 41, a sales representative in Sacramento, California, knows the pushback that can come from relatives when we marry across race lines.

When the former professional athlete announced his engagement to his college sweetheart, Trayce, a White woman, some of the ladies in his family did not hesitate to express their disappointment."It was hard for them," says Hargrove. When they found out I was getting married to a White woman, it was, "They're taking all our good men. ""Hargrove comes from a military family and says he grew up in diverse environments, including living in Germany for four years and moving to California when he was 15."Interracial relationships are all over the West Coast, so I could see a successful Black woman not be able to find that good Black man, in a sense.

"I knew we were going to have struggles as an interracial couple. He was willing to give up those relatives."Eventually some relatives came around and even danced at the wedding. They didn't attend the marriage ceremony, and Michael hasn't spoken to them in two years.

Things may be improving: The Meadors celebrated their first anniversary in August, and Michael's mother has invited them to spend Christmas in Mississippi with the family.

The ruling ultimately overturned the ban on interracial marriages.

This fall Focus Features released a movie about Richard and Mildred's journey to legally marry.

C., says she feels frustrated, hurt and even betrayed when she sees Black men with women of other races, but happy when she sees Black women in an interracial relationship."I'm like, Yes, girl, do that," says Lachon. Women are taking control of their happiness."Dating interracially can still come with backlash for both Black men and women.

"There are some who really think that White or non-Black women are superior," Brooks says.

"I don't want these men anyway, because I'm not trying to be a part of somebody's intellectual development as a partner." Many of the sisters in her circle take the fact that some Black guys prefer women who don't look like their mothers personally.

So it's no wonder we're thrilled for Black women who have found love—no matter the ethnicity of their partner.

Though Black men are still twice as likely as Black women to date outside their race, it seems more and more of us are becoming open to dating beyond the color line.

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