Why do I always have Issues with BW Friendships?

I recently had a run in with a Black American woman who lives here in China that I thought was a friend… I don’t want to get into it too much but the jus of the heated discussion was the fact that she considered me “not loyal”.  Now.. I am many things …. and have been called many things… but never has my loyalty come into question, because I consider myself one of the loyalist people on the planet.   So this really basically … pissed me off.. and I actually for the first time in a long time lost my cool.  (which I try to never do) ….. th

After I cooled down… I thought about my life  and my friends…. I realize that I have had issues with Black women my whole life…. (my family is an exception) ….. I have never really fit in to the “group” …. and I have noticed that I have put a lot of energy and effort into trying to form these Black Female friendships to always end up getting upset, angered or hurt by them.

I have always wanted that long-term best Black girlfriend relationship I see that other people have…. but it never works out.   I am really not sure why… Black women have issues with me.  Gayle-King-with-Oprah-Winfrey I have always tried to be supportive of all Black women… whether it be in relationships or business.   I give advice and support in any way I can, but it is always one-sided.  I have had very, very few Black woman actually do something caring and supportive in return.   Now, I know when you help people you shouldn’t expect things in return, however, there has to be a point when you want to help your friend when they need it … because they have help you out so many times.   However, that doesn’t happen to me.   It seems many Black women I have helped in the past have short memories.   Once their issue is taken care of ….. I don’t exist anymore.

So, this situation today…. pushed me over the edge.   I was told I wasn’t loyal because when a friend had issues with a boss in a company I also worked for….. I didn’t quit my job as soon as it happened.   (besides the fact that after I got a new job, I did leave that employer)... the fact that I stayed a couple of months longer…. I wasn’t loyal.  I am sorry… but is that what loyalty means?   That if your friend suffers .. you need to suffer too? .. Have it got it all wrong here?    In my mind, when your friend has issues you do what you can to help them…. but if you are suffering too… then how can you help them out of their situation?

Maybe, I don’t understand what is required to be a loyal friend.  Maybe that is why I can’t form close relationships with Black woman…… I guess I am not a ride or die ….. and that is why people don’t want long-lasting friendships with me.   It is made me rethink this support system I have created for my “close” friends.   I honestly love my Black sisters but maybe I am just doing too much or maybe my definition of friend is different.  Well,  Time to re-evaluate how I do things….. and just be happy with the friendships I have formed with women of other nationalities.

until next time…….


22 thoughts on “Why do I always have Issues with BW Friendships?

  1. lydia

    People are different. Some of us african americans like to have long drawn out call and respond conversations. So if you seem to keep everything short then it seems like you are holding back or minuplitative . An example is a country/southern question. Where they talk for at least 20 minutes before asking a question. Least be considered rude. So if you always keep your own council it may make people leary.

    About this issue. The friend is either unreasonable or thought you had a lot if power at the old job.

  2. Lori

    Hi Jo,

    You are not alone! I have never had close relationships with BW. I can only count my sister and one other friend as the only BW, I am friends with. Most act as if they hate me on sight or want everyone to struggle with them.

    I remember a couple of years ago my mom asked me if I had any BW friends. I stopped trying and just make friends with those who make an effort in return.

  3. BlackandYellow

    Hi Jo,
    Sorry to hear this, yet what you are saying sounds all too familiar. Awhile back I was talking with a friend who works as a counselor about this issue. She said that because of slavery Black women have a tendency to be brutal with themselves and each other. Now, I nor she was refering to all Black women, but I also tend to think that Black women are wounded both Spiritually and mentally. Black women need each other and need healing. I think there is beginning to be a conscious shift and I am finding people like June Allen, who has the Yardies website, are writing about this issue and encouraging Black women to heal.
    I am sorry for the lenghty comment but I would like to say the following:
    You are loyal.
    You are loving.
    You are worthy, and you are a strong, positive, beautiful Black woman.

  4. arabella79

    Well as a black woman, I admire your journey and your spirit. I guess as Wendy Williams says, I think of you as a friend in my head 🙂 Hopefully one day we’ll meet and I can tell you how inspiring I think you are face to face. This was probably just a bad experience that you may be sensitized to since I’m the same way. I don’t care what other nationalities do, in fact I probably expect to be let down, but I just expect more of my sisters. Hoping things are looking up and you can agree to disagree with the friend. Also, she should really apologize. Calling someone disloyal is a major attack on a persons very character. All the best my sister 🙂

    1. I am so flattered that I inspire you…. and thank you so much for following my blog… yeah.. that hit me pretty hard…. and I am usually not affected by those things… but my character is all I have …

  5. Dear Jo, Thank you Thank you thank You! I feel the exact same way. I look at my sister and she has this whole group of girls she can travel and do things with and I want that for myself even when i put myself out there to make friends it is always one-sided!!!! or someting juvenile. I’ve been a person that right is right and wrong is wrong an djust because youre my friends don’t mean youre always right and that I have to just go with what you’re doing. this is how I lose most of my friend especially because I date interracial i get the, “you choose them over me” conversations when in reality “my friends” are extremley ignorant caliing all asias chinese. smh one day i will join you in china I look fporward to traveling soon

  6. Dee

    Trust me…you are not alone. I was always the one to make bw friendships wherever I went; however, my daughter is totally opposite. She’s in highschool now & does not have 1 REAL black friend. I was really worried about her but believe it or not…YOU keep me from worrying so much. She is not your typical bf. She’s DEEP into Korean/Japanese culture. She listens to Kpop & watches Korean dramas. She likes Lolita dresses. No one understands her. I read every post you put out & I see that you are making it in your own zone. That eases my fear about my daughter possibly moving abroad. We can only live for ourselves. Keep doing what you are doing. Everybody is not for you.

    1. I am like your daughter. I never really fit into “black cultural norm” didn’t have close black friends. I was a goth for most of my life. I only had one close black female friend. It was nice she was an odd duck like me. I know what Jo is talking about the black community here in China( mostly Shanghai is close knit) they take issue with Jo and are hostile. They consider her a threat. So the exclude her. Meanwhile she is a great resource and could be a great ally.

  7. Randy Taylor

    Jo I really feel your angst. I’m also African American female who always get used by my so called sistas. Always need a loan or ride since they don’t have a car. As soon as that gets done they disappear or get offended when I ask for any kind of help. So I will be your wingman so to speak… LOL.
    Love your column and hope you find your special friend soon

  8. As a black woman, I can tell you the problem with black people in general is we can’t seem to let go of the crabs in a barrel mentality. I think it’s a selfish impoverished viewpoint that a lot of us never let go because that’s what we grew up around. It even happens amongst us Caribbean people and it’s so shameful. Instead of focusing on how to increase ourselves so that we can bring each other up, we’re too focused on how to shame and degrade our fellow black people for the milestones they achieved. Her calling you disloyal for making sure you could continue to pay your bills and enjoy living in China says a lot more about her than you. She should’ve just sent you a warning about what you may go through with that employer and then focused on finding another job. I wish her the best but as a people, heck, as women, we definitely need to do better and stop trying to fault others for our personal shortcomings. Sending you love and light Jo.

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