Am I Black Enough?

Hello boys and girls… it has been a while because I have been working very hard on finishing my book.  I want to have it completed before Christmas so, time is ticking.

My book is basically about all the Asian men I have dated and just hooked up with in my life.  Now since I started dating at age 15ish and I am 50ish now… that is quite a lot of dating.  I also went through the “Hoe” years.  I can honestly say I have dated or hooked up with someone from almost every major Asian country.  Some good, Some bad, Some funny, Some strange and some sad stories will be included in the book.  I have received pretty good feedback for the most part.  I informed my baby daddy that he was in the book, a whole chapter but I didn’t use his name. He told me “Use my name, bitch, I want to be famous.” with his crazy ass.

I did run into one negative jab that really rubbed me the wrong way.  On Facebook, I was doing a small survey to see which cover would be best for my book.  I had several choices available, just to get a feel of what would attract the audience to buy it.  One book cover has a photo of my husband and I on it.

final coverInstead of just saying she preferred one cover over the other. She said” No offense (you know whenever someone starts with no offense it usually means to offend), but you should not put your face on the cover of the book because it would dissuade people of darker skin color, like myself, from buying the book if seen on the bookshelf. “

At first, I was kind of confused, I thought why would that be the case I am a black woman?  Then I thought about it and figured out that she meant that I wasn’t black enough to represent black women, who date Asian men.  I was terribly offended by that statement.  Again my “blackness” is challenged by other women of color.  I reminded her that Black women come in all hues and sizes. But She proceeds to tell me that because of my skin color I would not understand the same racism as someone darker than me.  In my mind racism is racism.  Just because I don’t have beautiful ebony skin doesn’t mean I don’t experience racism, especially in China.  I was very angry but more hurt by the fact that because I don’t wear my natural hair and my skin is honey colored; I am not considered an equal to other Black women.

Now, my friends and family, of course, told me she was a hater and  I shouldn’t listen to anything she said.  But it really made me think about my life as a “Not so dark” Black woman.  I have been called out on my “blackness” many time in my life.  It is like I have to “prove” that I am black enough.  Do I dress ethnic enough, is my speaking ethnic enough, is my behavior ethnic enough?  I remember being hired as the receptionist for a Jamaican owned septic tank company in Miami.  They hired me based only on the fact that I sounded “white” and would get more customers nothing else. They even told me that was why they hired me.  I needed the money so I took the job anyway.

I grew up surrounded by Caucasians and so, I’m sure being in that influence has made me a bit different while growing up.  However, my family is Black and the majority of my friends are from many different nationalities and ethnic groups.  However, the fact that this woman mentioned my face would hurt the sales of my book, really hit a nerve.

Is this what we as a people have become?  Judging people on their skin-color within our own community. Pulling people down when they are trying to better themselves?  ……  Why?

I am writing this book for mainly entertainment (the stories are pretty good) but also to show that Black women can date Asian men of any country if they know how to bait the hook. Also, just because she made a big deal about it… I’m leaving my face on the cover….. Because whether she likes it or not I am a proud Black woman no matter my skin tone.

until next time…..



24 thoughts on “Am I Black Enough?

  1. maddie

    Honestly, as an african american woman you look on target to me. What would make me pause about buying your book is your background is more of a white person. You lived with whites, your kids married white, you dont have the same background that most african americans have. I will buy your book because I want to support you but I doubt if it will be usefull to me. You seem to approach life as a white woman. You would be use to standing out cause you was always the only black.

    1. First of all…. my family is black and I was raised by my Black Grandmother….. also my daughter only dates Black men…. but I am trying to understand what you mean by “live like a white woman” …. where do you get this? because I am educated? because I don’t live in the hood? because I don’t eat collards and neck bones…. ? How are “black people” supposed to live? I grew up playing spades, I have mostly black people in my family… how I live is normal…. I thank you for the support on my book… but I think have judged me completely wrong.

    2. Yona SD

      What is Black? Specifically, what is Black in America? There’s no – one – way to be Black (only in Hollywood); and thanks to DNA tests, we are finding out what we’ve already known: We’re a mixed lot.

      So What is Black in America then? Dark skin? Nappy or curly hair? Larger backside? Etc… Well, Black is also light skin, wavy or straight hair, average to no saggy butt, etc., and all kinds of different combinations therin. One can’t rely on phenotypes to judge Blackness.

      Well then, it must be a cultural phenomenon. But then Black culture in America depends on what part of the country you were raised, along with your lifestyle – like urban, rural or suburbia. Your religion, diet, ideology, familial and societal pressures.

      No one has the right to tell another that their Blackness isn’t enough! We have enough to deal with without being brought down from within.

  2. shay

    Black women have a lot of pain as you know … color, weight, wealth, and beauty . and its a shame she felt the need to say that to you.
    Damn its not like you are Rachel Dolanez LOL ! SMDH She wanted her pain to be heard and I get it, I’m a black woman too .
    But sometimes it is OK to keep your pain and opinions to yourself ! Folks think they have the right to tell you what to do because you share a bit of your life with them . I cant wait to see your beautiful face on YOUR book and I’m ready to read all the TEA ! lol much love

  3. Yona SD

    Congratulations on your book! And by the way, I love that proposed cover, it’s perfect!

    Don’t let that person’s comment get you down, you are your own person and no one has lived your life, or can live your life but you! Your path is your own. Anything else is noise.

    I’ve had to deal with colorism all my concious life. I’m a lil’ bit older than you so perhaps you understand how years of this can tear one down… I’m still a bit bitter about it all, just a bit. My family comes in many shades, so I understand what each one of them had to deal with in their lives, over generations.

    I’ve learned to be me, not what others think that I should be; and to appreciate who and what I am, as I am.

    I have to admit that reading your blogs have helped.

    Jo, Ignore the noise.

    1. Olivia

      When can we expect your book to be released. I love reading your blog and have been reading it for years. Can’t wait till you release the book. Pretty cover by the way.

  4. Diana Bradshaw

    I love reading your blog and look forward to your book as I am sure many others do. I can see you’re a woman who knows what she wants and goes out to get it.
    The ‘face’ issue, is her problem not yours. You know who you are and that’s why we like you. Follow your intuition and rise above. XXX

  5. She isn’t ‘insecure about her complexion’ and I wished when dark-skinned black women spoke truth about how deep colorism, featurism, etc runs in the ‘black community’ people wouldn’t dismiss it because of their own personal biases. I think she is right. I’m about Rihanna’s complexion and I’ve never experienced racism from white people. Why? Because I’ve been told my entire life I look like I’m mixed with something and therefore I am less intimidating to white people. I’ve actually experienced racism from other people of color. Why? Because I’m darker than what they respect and prefer which is whites. But I’ve also been treated much better than my darker skinned friends collectively. It’s a matter of color. When I first started following your blog and listened to your stories, I did and do believe your skintone makes a difference. Being black enough is not just about how you’re treated as a black woman but it’s also how you appear to everyone. Colorism and featurism is global just like racism so to make it seem as though she’s questioning your blackness when she’s actually stating what many black women would feel when they see you, is not looking at the bigger picture. It is factual that the lighter you are, the more accepted you are in society and especially to men, most of which are colorist. I support you 100% but I thought I’d share with you an opinion that will differ from the rest.

    1. Okay I can understand that.. but to tell me that it would hurt my book sales… really.. To me that is petty. Honestly I have experienced more racist when I was in the united states than since I have been in china and I still stated many Asian men there. there are going to be Racist people everywhere.. but I can tell you this…. the other 10 to 20 Black women I know that are much darker than me are also married to Asian men. In America and outside. Now they aren’t writing books but.. I can tell you that its more about attitude than skin color. I believe that if we feel they don’t like us we will give off vibes to make them not like us. Thank you for your opinion and your support.

      1. That’s so very true!! I really can’t wait for your book to drop and I always enjoy your perspective on life overseas. You inspire me and are one of my s-heroes! I think people don’t understand how hurtful they can be when they speak without thinking first. That’s why it’s always best to try and put more love in the world to combat the negativity.

    2. Dee

      I was about to add a different perspective… and then I read your comment. You nailed it. It was respectful, but still offered an alternate viewpoint on colorism. While her blog is fabulous and funny as all heck, I do believe her features and skin tone have played a large role in her experiences and level of acceptance in Asia.

  6. It’s your book, put what the hell you like on the cover.
    Let her write and publish her own book and splatter her own face all over that.

    Foolish of her to perpetrate racism whilst complaining of being a victim of the same!
    I’ve been told also by other black women that despite my skin being obviously brown I must really be white because of my diction and punctuality. So ridiculous the lengths we go to to create needless division.

    Jo, you inspire so many black women. Keep on doing what you’re doing.
    Looking forward to reading your book.

  7. Regi

    Do what you feel is right for your book cover. You already know the history of black people here in America. I personally do believe dark skinned women have the hardest time here…but they have the best skin. It’s beautiful and ages slowly. We have issues with light and dark skin. But I’m not turned off or jealous of light skinned women. They have issues too and are beautiful as well. Do you boo!

  8. Mrs. Lewin

    Sorry you had yet another bad experience with a fellow Black woman. This woman who happened to be darker is obviously insecure about her complexion. Colorism is very damaging to those who are victims of it. In worldwide, just about everything associated with blackness and being dark is negative. Like you said, we come in all shades, but in all actuality, dark complexioned people everywhere are considered less beautiful/appealing or less handsome than their lighter counterparts. It’s possible that she has issues with this and decided to take a “dig” at you because of it.

    Congratulations on the book! Your complexion will not keep people who want to learn from your experiences from buying the book.

    By the way, I’m married to a Jamaican man and, in their culture, you are what they refer to as a “browning.” Black women your complexion are the most sought after and considered better looking than women who have more melanin. Because of this, skin bleaching is a HUGE problem there. I’m sure your complexion had just as much to do with you gaining employment with the Jamaican business owners as your voice did. LOL Take care.

  9. As always I love your blog and you. We will always have people like the one who left that horrible comment. That person doesn’t know your story and the many facets of you. I applaud you and all that you have done and are doing. Looking forward to buying my copy of the book and reading every page with enjoyment!

  10. This is an honest look at an ugly truth. Yes, she was absolutely saying you’re not black enough. I can’t speak firsthand but I’ve been told there is colorism within the black community (and maybe other groups of minorities?). You find yourself in the odd position of experiencing racism from the white world for being *at all* black and bias from your black community because of being light. It sounds like a hard place to be. Thank you for sharing your truth.

  11. First off, congratulations for writing and publishing a book!! Kudos for you on that alone.

    Now on to my thoughts and I’m only responded to one of the paragraphs in your blog.

    Is this what we as a people have become? Some people, not all.
    Judging people on their skin-color within our own community. Some people inside of our community and other in other communities, too.
    Pulling people down when they are trying to better themselves? …… Yep, yep, and yep, and again, some people but not all.
    Why? Who knows, who cares really. It’s not my business what people get worked up about. It’s their issue, not yours.

    Write your book, keep doing you! Be happy! Life’s too short for anything else.

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