The Wedding Proprosal, hope and single black women

The Wedding Proposal is a personal documentary where the filmmaker takes stock of her life style and romantic choices during the year of her 35th birthday. The film examines the institution of marriage, opinions and attitudes about marriage and marriage options from the viewpoint of professional African-American women my age and older.”

Thomas Lopez-Pierre (holding private placement memorandum) with models during casting call for Fashion Show Club Magazine /investor presentation for Lopez-Pierre Realty, LLC, November 19, 2007 (NYC)
Thomas Lopez-Pierre (holding private placement memorandum) with models during casting call for Fashion Show Club Magazine /investor presentation for Lopez-Pierre Realty, LLC, November 19, 2007 (NYC)

I’m watching Anjanette Levert’s documentary on BET right now. The filmmaker, an educated African-American journalist, celebrates her 35th birthday and acknowledges to her dismay that she is STILL unmarried. For answers she turns to her family, her friends and a very interesting negro…Thomas Lopez Pierre, Managing Partner of The Harlem Club, a private social club for professional African-Americans. Any professional man is eligible to join, but women must be under 35, single, have no children; AND they must also submit head and body photos. Thomas points out the troubling statistic that of those African-Americans that graduate college, 65% are women. That leaves a shortage of available professional men for women like Anjanette. As you might think, the ladies in the documentary are not feeling Mr. Lopez. He says that most professional men don’t want a partner (who is a professional woman who works and that they have to support in their goals and journey to success) …they want a wife and that they want to walk into the room with a drop dead gorgeous woman/trophy that personifies their success. He also says there is NO hope for any unmarried black woman over the age of 35. Very interesting…sigh.

What do I think?
Everybody wants love. No body wants to be one of “those women”.  Yall know what I’m talking about!

Very interesting so far…it will be on again as part of the Black Stories series, I’m sure.

31 Comments

Filed under african american, black, black men, black women, community, dating, drama, love, opinion, race, society, stereotype, video, women

31 Responses to The Wedding Proprosal, hope and single black women

  1. yvonnjanae

    Sista, hope you aren’t surprised that no one has commented on this. As an editor, years ago I ran an article in a daily newspaper about the growing plight of single black women. The main story was a Washington Post wire story, but I wanted a local sidebar and asked a Af-Am female reporter to work on it. I was shocked that she missed her deadline and didn’t even seem apologetic. She told me: “Nobody wanted to give me any quotes for the story. They all said the story made black women seem like pathetic saps.”
    I was shocked. I thought sistahs would be happy to get this issue off their chests. The article that she turned in was weak and she basically used her personal friends to give the quotes (she didn’t know I knew that).
    But ever since then, I’ve come to realize that the abandonment of black women. The Eternal Single-ization of Black Women is far too painful to self-examine on a large scale.
    What does it say about us that legions of our most talented, upwardly mobile women will be unmarried until their retirement, their deaths?
    And don’t put it on weight, or dark skin or teenage pregnancies…
    I’ve known far too many young women — who are now middle-age women — who fit the American Ideal for beauty but have never had a wedding ring on their finger.
    Too many of us are sitting, hoping that the black knight in shining armor will come.
    i hope I get a chance to see this documentary. I hope it opens dialogue.

  2. I’m on track to be one of those never-been-married, childless black women. I’d be curious to see this documentary … but I think the Harlem Club piece would piss me off too much.

  3. To my professional Black sisters:

    I am sorry that so many of you will never find a husband.

    Only God will be able to help you.

    Thomas Lopez-Pierre
    Managing Member
    Harlem Club, LLC
    HarlemClub.com

  4. Pingback: Single Black Women, let us pray… « Hello, Negro

  5. I’m a single black female, childless and nearly 35.
    But I’m not upset about that..

    What kind of comment is that from Lopez-Pierre? How glib.

    $5,000 a year! I’m curious, now. Who pays that price — and what do you get for it?

  6. REALLY?

    Question:

    “$5,000 a year! I’m curious, now. Who pays that price — and what do you get for it?” DNLee

    Answer:

    “…African-American investment bankers, corporate lawyers and doctors…”

    …who get…

    “…monthly cocktail parties…”

    “…comfort far away from the crowded New York nightlife scene and, as some confess, the urban riffraff…”

    …and…

    “…pretty women.” Harlem Club

  7. Ajariah Muhammad

    So, I often check this blog site and I am always amazed at what I am reading. It is funny that our race has so much doubt about each other. I have met numerous people who married passed 35. Here I am at age 26 with no kids, two degrees and almost finished with numer three, successful marketing company,and only dating. From the looks of the picture; the owner needs to practice what he preach. This club may say $5K yet you may get there and the riffraff still there. I wish him success and I am glad he feel that way about us black women. I say we as women should continue to grow and do our thing. comments welcomed to msmadison08@gmail.com

  8. I went to South Africa a few years ago on a missions trip. About 200 people from my church also went. We resided in a city hotel and worked in the townships. Pretoria(name has changed) looked like any other major city in the US. I was loved seeing my people everywhere.

    Over the course of ten days there, I observed loud, obnoxious, forceful, and blunt we were as American women. The people we in countered were meek, mild, contained, gentle, and quiet in spirit. The American black men were not as the black women were. By the end of the we everyone had made the adjustment in their approach to the S. African people.

    At the end of the day, we would have a wrap up devotional session were these observations were brought up. The lone member of our team who was now an American but native to South Africa, let us in on how he saw American Black women. His being years in America was naturally an adjustment, but when it came to black women he said that he had a very hard time socializing.

    Culturally speaking black women are different. The men who are in interracial relationships stay because of how that women makes them feel, and I’m told that feeling is the affirmation, trust, accept him at face value, admire the manly things about him, honor him, respect his role and what he brings(even if it only a potential) and they help him bring that out.

    Start asking the question of people you know of different cultures and/or races how they see black – then ask a black man how he see’s black. It may be unfair – racist – untrue, but look at the single-hood numbers.

    While in conversation with my brother-in-law in a troubled marriage. He is from the country, his wife is from the suburbs, says that he resents that his wife was not taught HOW to care for her husband. He is disturbed over the fact that she wants to ‘measure arms’ or compete with him. Now that the marriage is at this point, he says he never wants to marry age, after 17 years. He is doing his all to fight for his family but that things that make him a man, she attacks. And he falls into the trap of getting anger, and pushing her away. What I’m saying here is that right or wrong, as a man he feels that she is too independent (making decision without him), does not admire him, does not honor him as a father or husband.

    I said a lot of what seems like blah, blah, but we need to begin asking the question of is there something about me that I can not see but need to change. I believe some very real cultural changes need to happen. I believe that there is a generation of girls growing up without proper training on how to be a women. I believe culturally, we to begin dealing with our hurts. As women, I believe we need to ask the question, what does it mean to me to be a women and what role do I see myself within a relationship, and does that role being affected by my upbringing, perceptions, and/or past hurts?

  9. LVL

    Naomi, I just want to say, how can you learn to respect a man when there’s no father in the home to respect. Many black women grow up without fathers and so they don’t know what a man suppose to be or how to respect one. They see their mothers being mom and dad and therefore they grow up being independent like their mother. They see their mothers struggle to take care of them with no man in sight, so of course they are going to feel like men are a piece of crap.

    I don’t feel that it is black woman’s complete fault, i feel most of it resides on the black man because he is the one who choose to abandon his family. That’s why so many of them end up in prisons because a woman can not teach a man to be a man, only a man can.

    I do feel like some black women need to make better chocies in men, period.

    Also, since when does being an independent woman a crime? Is that so wrong? And why do we always have to focus on pleasing a man! Do we have to dumb ourselves down just to make a man happy!

  10. Enough of pining away about the black male. I am sick of it already. The gold ring is not guarantee of lasting happiness, in fact it only guarantees more work, and more stress. If a man cannot accept a woman that is self-assured and self-reliant then he is not a man. His masculinity should not be predicated on demeaning women. You are either a person of value or you are not.

  11. Hili

    I’m late to this discussion but as a black male 26 years old with a law degree, I instantly thought I would attract more black women. Yet I have found that I Cannot get a date. I grew up upper middle class with a solid family , played college football, and have no crminal record but I revive scant attention from my sistahs. I hate to stereotype but it seems as if materialism amongst black people make women desire those that pop bottles and men want video honey type women . Hey black women educated black men exist…do you really want that is my questio

  12. Tash

    I am a female attorney, 35 with children and I have found that as I progress in my career it is more difficult to meet African American men regardless of status. The Harlem Club is just another way to eliminate all prospects of reuniting the black family.

  13. T-Nic

    1. How can I see this movie?

    2. We need work here:

    Black women and men need to re-examine some of the items on their “ideal mate” list (ladies, I know you know what list I’m talking about)

    Our African-based culture makes us a unique and beautiful people to whom authentic relationships with one another truly matter. Attributes like kindness, character, good communication skills, humor, loving community, vision, collaboration, good work ethic, loving children, respecting one another, mean a lot to us.

    Why then do we continue to allow Hollywood and the rest of the media to define what successful black love looks like? How would they even know? How come we exchange the attributes above – which are key ingredients for a successful marriage – with how “fine” someone is – how long the hair, how big the muscles, how high-power the job, how fancy the car, how big the house, fly the clothes, and sexy the body. And ha! we want it all in ONE Package to boot.
    As a 39 year old single, degreed black woman and mother, I confess that having a partner who satisfies the outward criteria that you see has a fulfillment of its own. Let’s be real about that. However, I’ve lived and loved long enough to know that it can NEVER compare to the satisfaction of a soul-to-soul, intimate relationship or be the force in strengthening black communities.

    So please, let’s get what we want in a mate. But let our list of wants be balanced with the lasting qualities that will increase the likelihood of our lasting happiness and fulfillment.

  14. Eddie Guerrero

    My homegirl made me watch this with her. I thought it was interesting because I went to boarding school, college, have many certs in my field, keep myself in shape, educated, do work in DR and Haiti for poverty stricken youth, able to discuss many topics that relate to us and the world, and for some reason, those same sistas in the doc seemed just like the same sistas who’d not give me the time of day ever. I was never ‘black enough’ for them, didn’t do the stereotypical black things so they couldn’t relate (as a few said in retrospect). I don’t agree that men just want trophies, that’s nonsense. That’s for the idiot men and women who are nothing without the ‘accomplishments’ they brandish like they’re better than someone- as most people think they’re so successful do today. But not everyone who’s made it is like that. One could argue the women I know, like the women of this film, are also stuck on a percentage of dudes they dreamed up in their minds, who might not even exist, and thus they can’t find him. My personal opinion, myself and many of my boys were looking for partners when we left college but the strong, black, newly-professional women were 100% about the careers and the newly found power they had. They were not looking for anything but that, and only after the mid 30s do they suddenly want to stop having fun and wake up- except no one is waking up next to them. Also consider that for women to change the game, you have to have men change along with you. If you force your new power down people’s faces, talking about no good black men left, they’re gay, in jail or with white men, you do a huge disservice to brothas like me because everyone you brainwash with that propaganda lumps ME with that loser group- thus I get no luv from the professional black women. You write us off before even giving us a chance, IMO. The issue you all face is you didn’t seek balance earlier on. You just were about your empowerment going full speed ahead, now you’re just looking back like “where is everyone”. You can’t get there without your black man, try as you may to substitute, you’ll only be alone without him, so get off of your empowered, professional butts and FIND the ones who are not the stereotype you complain about. And stop doing me the disservice of making all black women and now white women, think I’m a multi-baby daddy who beats you, has a jail record, smokes weed and won’t get a job- I’m NONE of that and I don’t need you TOO now agreeing with white America’s stereotype! I have white women asking me at the job if “it’s that bad” in the black communities. WTF? lol It’s not that serious, white women have the same issues, as do white men and black men who don’t look like Brad Pitt/Denzel with careers. Correct me if I’m wrong, but Sex in the City is white women with the same issue so come on with this stuff already. Wise up, get some cultural values, own up to your hand in this matter and put value in the real men still here Because for every 1 (perceived) good professional woman, there are 10 Laquifa Jenkins’ being the negative stereotype of women, and I’m surely not saying all of you are her!

  15. Kat

    I am a career government secretary and I remained single until I was fifty-four years old. My mother passed away when I was fifty-tw0. We were like sisters and her passing left me with an extremely deep void. I wanted to date and eventually get married but the black men I knew and came in contact with daily fell into these catagories: most were not interested in women of their own race, married, and wanting to date but never marry. I joined one of the major dating sites and almost instantly began to be asked out on dates and eventually met and married a wonderful man. My husband is Caucasian and the most wonderful man I have ever known with the exception of my father. I recommend a good internet dating site for marriage minded women.

  16. peanut

    I want to marry Camille Mesquita in Philadelphia, so we ultimately don’t end up on this page…she also is my soulmate…good luck my people have hope in us as individuals and a community .

  17. RL

    I am a single, never married African American woman over 35 with no children yet. I have struggled with this issue the past few years.

    When I was in my 20s I worked on my relationships and tried my best to treat others based on the love I had for them not on how they treated me. I read books and opened my mind to constructive criticism. I looked at forgiveness in relationships and learned how to truly love people. Don’t get me wrong, I am by no means trying to say I have the “perfect” way of loving people. I still make mistakes.

    Over the years, men have mistaken my kindness for weakness or flat out didn’t want to talk to me because I wanted to be married. It was like even talking with men about the word “marriage” was off limits. When interacting with men of other races, those same conversations were welcomed with no one thinking the other was trying to “trap” them into marriage.

    I have become very disillusioned about black men and marriage. Even my faith has been shaken. How could God allow me and so many of my sisters be so unloved in this world?

  18. peanut

    I have always loved you camille. we can’t have what we had before. we can however have something much more, much improved. This time I will be a man. I want you to be my wife I want you in my life forever’ I will never leave your side. I promise…Camille ….

  19. Mr. Hiarston

    Camille will you marry me! I haven’t gotten the chance as of yet to say those words. I have wanted to for quite some time, however she was so insistant on being married “she” forgot what we really needed which was better communication and to work thru our prior issues so “we” could be comfortable in “our” marriage. We eventually broke up partly due to myself “acting out” because of frustration of her not keeping her promise of working it out with me after we abruptly ended relationship counseling due to her having a hard time with it, and me thinking of her over the issue {we never really got to it to begin with…we left to soon even though I thought it selfish of her to suggest we go then quit. The break up has been a life changing experience for myself. I know where we can do things effectively. We must talk to each other before things get bad “every relationship has it’s problems.” I know the things I did wrong…caused by phychological trauma or not, I handled it in the wrong capacity. I have the tools necessary to get the job done now after many therapy sessions to deal with my issue were successfully completed and I’m ready to be in a healthy marriage with Camille. ” I HAVE ALWAYS WANTED TO BE WITH THIS ONE WONDERFUL WOMAN!!!! I accept her with all her shortcommings. I love her unconditionally. The only demand I have is that we communicate better. I wish for one last chance that will last a lifetime. I have no doubt we will go all the way, if she’ll just believe in us, and really talk to me. I’m not stubborn because i don’t want to marry camille, I was stubborn because I once thought being together was more important than being married…I know better now from a Pastor…Marriage is about choosing a life partner whom you work “WITH” & about showing and being committed to that person every day of life. I also know Camille was selfish because she knew if I would be committed to her in marriage she would have less reason to be selfish…she wanted what was best but took the wrong approach. I love her and I have no doubt she loves me…but I ask this…”What good is this if we’re not loving each other. I was to propose on christmas . I had decided shortly before her birthday which was in July ,before all of this took place we both will be marrying wiser individuals should we take the chance on love. we’ve been put on hold too long. I know I will be a great husband and father & I only want it with this woman. We are both good people whove made mistakes and misjudgements in the past, hopefully we can use what we learn with one another. Pray for me and I’ll pray for you. GOOD MEN ARE HARD TO FIND & AS IS SUCH FOR WOMEN. If you have a good one fight hard for “EACHOTHER”….and “LISTEN” to one another. “PRAY FOR US” I’m a black male 37 years of age and I’m in love with a woman named “Camille”.

  20. Mr.Hairston

    Camille” I WANT TO MARRY ONLY YOU !” you are the one I want to be my wife.

  21. J

    Lol…Mr. Hariston, I hope Camille answers your proposals. I have seen the documentary and I it make me cry. I am 28 years old and welcome the opportunity to be trule loved by a man. Of course I would prefer to be with a black man, but I wouldn’t rule out any man on the basis of skin color. However, I beleive that black unity begins with the family and our men as the head of that unity..But I must admit it is very discouraging out here in the dating scene…I can’t even think about marriage. I feel that there are various reasons why I am still single together and can’t get any love from the brothers.. it seems that the brothers who have it together (stable jobs, education, savings..etcc) want sisters who are fair in complexion or of mixed race…. or they are very full of themselves. The rest of use are stuck with Jerome-e- roon (lol) from the corner, baby daddy’s or gold diggers . Then you have are brothers who feel threaten with a sister who has a career…I mean may parents are from Africa…I was raised for a woman to be submissive to her man up to a certain point. I dont mind cooking, cleaning and serving the food. But I also feel that the man should play his role as a provider. However, just because I have career, many men feel that I can’t play my role in the relationship and have all these ideas in their mind of me being a bitch…it’s crazy.

  22. Tony

    Mr. Hairston,
    You sound like a little crybaby. Oh Camille, I love you. Marry me. If you were worth it, she’d still be with you. You said “this time I will be a man.” If you want to be a man, dust yourself off and move on with your life. Learn from your mistakes and grow as a person. Sounds like this ship has sailed.

  23. Erica

    This ship has NOT sailed. A few verses that I try to hold on to (when I don’t feel like holding onto my husband) are..

    1 Corinthians 13:4-6,13
    4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, ALWAYS HOPES, ALWAYS PERSEVERES

    13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

    Anyway, I will believe and will pray that this works out for you. I have been married for 6 years and if there is piece of advice that I can give you is that if you are a follower of Christ (you mentioned talking with a Pastor) put Christ in the center of your marriage. We didn’t REALLY understand that that involves much more than making sure we attend church together every Sunday. It means each of you drawing close enough to Christ to allow His love to fill you…and then allowing that love to overflow to your spouse(particulary when you discover that they aren’t as lovable as you once believed they were!). I have learned that in marriage, promises WILL be broken, I will dissapoint and be dissappointed. To quote John Legends song, “we’re just ordinary people…”. But when I can stop and realize that I am loved because of the underserved favor that I have from God (better known as grace), it makes it much easier to love my to love my ass-clown of a husband.

    (Please forgive me for including the word ass-clown in the same post as scripture….the Lord is still working on my language :.)

  24. Mr.Hairston

    J & Erica thank you for your responses . I don’t know why I made the post to begin with or how I stumbled onto this site …however Thank you! …as far as Tony goes I will pray for you to become a percentage of the man I am. You remind me of the type of person who would not fight for the woman of his dreams …to impress himself & an ego that will only harm YOU.

  25. Tony

    Hey Mr. H.,
    How about I pray for you to grow a pair! You crack me up saying I would not fight for the woman of my dreams. All I know is that I’m man enough to know when something is over. I don’t go online and beg and cry like a baby. Women just love a man who acts like a whimp. If she wanted to be with you, she would. What do you think you are going to prove? That you can beg like a dog? Good luck, homo!

  26. DeepThroat

    BACK TO THOMAS LOPEZ-PIERRE…

    Poor guy has issues. His angry negative comments about Black Women only amplify his shame at how he came to be in this world and his hatred for his mother. What is scary though, is that he has followers.

    Newspaper article from archive:

    Who Is Thomas Lopez-Pierre?
    Article from:The Tennessee Tribune Article date:August 25, 2005 More results for: “Thomas Lopez-Pierre” | Copyright information

    Tennessee TRIBUNE, The
    08-25-2005
    Part One — The Early Years

    Thomas and his twin brother were born addicted to drugs on July 6, 1968 in
    the Bronx to a woman of Haitian decent. The sperm donor was of Puerto Rican
    decent. They never married. Abortion was not legal at the time. Thomas
    never saw his natural mother again, after she left the hospital to move on
    with her life. Thomas did not meet his natural father until he was 8 years
    old, a day he ended up regretting (more on that later). The State of New
    York made Thomas and his brother wards of the state. After being dumped
    with several foster homes, they found a moment of peace at the age of 3
    with an upper middle class black family on Long Island, …

    Read all of this article with a FREE trial…

  27. Mr.Hairston

    1. my post is not a proposal it was a therapy exercise to write something, I did it online.
    2. tony I think your gay, what man responds to another man’s post online about a relationship…I don’t recall asking anyone to respond, especially a dude. I take back the gay statment,gay people are smart. I think you may be one of those in the closet dudes or someone who enjoys touching kids.
    3.I used to think like you…guess I really wasn’t thinking at all, never the less…when I do get her back and I will, then I will show her these post to let her know she could have ended up with someone like YOU, all your advice tells me about you is that you would quit before you gave becoming a better person a try & quitting is a weak quality. Thanks for the entertainment anyway but from this point on only responding to positive responses. I don’t have a shortage of interested women . I have moved on but until I find another I will marry life has taught me to never say never! wish I had more time but I’m going on a date with a nice woman tonight got to spray on some Cavalli after a shower & be on my way.I suggest you do the same homegirl. You never liked me anyway worse than a damn dike.

  28. Tony

    Mr H(omo),
    The only reason I responded to your post was because I felt sorry for you that you were crying like a baby on the Internet. I think that’s really sad. I feel badly for people who need to hold onto the past. Worse than that, I feel even more sorry for people who are depending on someone else to bring them happiness. So, you can get on your high horse and call me gay and say you didn’t ask for a “dude” to respond. Whatever helps you sleep at night is fine. The truth is YOU got dumped… not me. If she is as special as you say and was with me, I would treat her with the respect a woman deserves. I wouldn’t be online like a high school kid begging for her back. I wouldn’t be foolish enough to lose her in the first place. Your posts are actually a bit disturbing. You sound like a stalker. It’s goof balls like you that give the good guys a bad name. One last thing, let me know when you have kids. I wanna come and touch them for you. Good luck, loser.

  29. Mr.Hairston

    if we were having this discussion in person there is a great possibility I would split your wig, but we are not. Good response!

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