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How to Find Black Love, Because You’re Worth It
by Jamela Green
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July 25, 2019

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6 Minute Read

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How to Find Black Love, Because You’re Worth It

Dondré Whitefield, Erica Campbell, and Christina Rice talk Dating for Depth at the 2019 Black Love Summit.

“We got a lot of grown males that are walking around… wearing the uniform of a man. [Understand] the only thing you need to be a male is a penis and a pulse… In order to be a man, you gotta have purpose and precision.” — Dondre’ Whitfield.

These intro words of wisdom left the crowd scurrying for their notebooks and pens at the 2019 Black Love Summit panel Dating For Depth, featuring wellness expert Christina Rice, actor Dondré Whitefield, and singer Erica Campbell, and moderated by BlackLove.com president Jasmine Nicole.   

But the ladies of the panel knew that “purpose and precision” was not only the duty of the men, and as the panelist went deep into their own journeys to finding love — self-reflection, self-care, and taking responsibility for cleaning up their own side of the street took center stage.   

Related: Men on Vulnerability and Dating at the 2019 Black Love Summit

All the speakers provided a fresh perspective on doing your own work, investing in yourself, and building up your self-love credit. The overwhelming consensus: it takes courage and it takes honest self-evaluation.

Do your own work, invest in yourself, and build up your self love credit.

Erica explained, “You have to figure out what the problem is, be honest with yourself [and, if you see you’re the problem, say] I got to stop doing that, this is not healthy, this makes people run away.” She continued, “You can’t just say, oh he wasn’t strong enough to take me. You can’t fight the man every day. Not EVERY DAY.” 

That struck a nerve as the crowds agreed in joint laughter.

Dondre’ added, “You have to be your biggest accountability partner, sometimes we don’t want to look at ourselves, so we begin to look at everybody else, (looking to the left) negro you need to get your life together, (looking to the right) negro you need to get your life together, (looking behind himself) negro you need to get your life together… Then we get in the mirror, like, (smiling and stroking his beard as if he’s perfect)”. He drives the point home with the words of his grandfather, “Son, it can’t be everybody [else].”

“You have to be your own accountability partner.”

“When you’re combing your hair and you get a little kink, you take the comb out and you go slowly with it [trying to work through the kink],” Erica said. “[But] when we get kinks in our lives, we don’t want to comb it through [working out kinks].”  

The panelists agreed that it is that work, that willingness to work through the kinks, that prepares you for lasting, healthy, life-giving love. 

Related: The 1 Essential Rule For Dating Yourself This Year

Dating for Depth panel

Christina said, “When you know what healthy feels like, you know what it doesn’t feel like.” For that, we all did a collective soul clap. Recognizing when you’re healthy enough to date can make all the difference in your relationship. It can be easy to go super deep into a relationship super quick, investing time, heart, and money in something that looks good, smells good, and tastes good, but feels like crap. Sometimes it’s better to play the waiting game instead of the field, and sometimes it’s best to date yourself before inviting someone else to the party. 

Related: One Man’s ‘I’m Not Ready’ is Another Man’s ‘I Knew the Moment I Saw Her’

Christina passionately spoke of how she had to do the work on herself to get to the point where she was ready to date and how having a diverse dating portfolio can be the bridge to finding the one. She shared, “I started online dating a month ago [now] I got French bae, I got engineer bae, I got pharmaceutical bae. I’m having fun. And the reason why I’m having fun is because it’s from the inside”. 

 

“I’m having fun. And the reason why I’m having fun is because it’s from the inside”. 

By far the best moment of the session came when Dondré took the time to celebrate Black Love. 

“… clap it up for just being here… We used to shame white folks… ‘look at them, reading books… look at them getting information, suckers!’ [But] WE NEED THIS!” 

Truer words were never spoken. 

And, the information received and knowledge gained at the Dating For Depth panel proved: It may cost some change to make a change, but investing in yourself, investing in your dating life, and investing in your future is well worth it, in fact, it should be a priority. So, cut the check.

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