Black women: Is the church keeping you single?

“I’m waiting on God to send me a man.”

Another Valentine's Day...

A few years ago Deborrah Cooper wrote an article for her Surviving Dating website which was titled: The Black Church: How Black Churches Keep African American Women Single and Lonely. To no surprise this controversial article caught on like wildfire. Discussions about it were in newspapers as well as on CNN.

Her theory is black women are being “brainwashed” by ministers and they take the bible too literal when it comes to being submissive to men. Ms. Cooper also states she believes many of these women miss out on opportunities to date suitable men because they continue to insist that their mate be black and a man of God.

To be fair Ms. Cooper does state that there are four types of black single men in church and they are as follows.

1. A loser working a 12 step program – They need help getting their life back on track.

2. Openly or in the closet gay men –Neither which are interested in marrying. They are looking to be accepted or hoping to pray away the gay.

3. Opportunistic players on the prowl - Every player I know of goes to a few different churches. They have easy pickings amongst the hundreds of horny lonely single women who will cook and give them free meals and satisfy his sexual urges.

4. Elderly reformed players – Worried about dying alone, they bring their behinds back to church to find a “good Christian woman” for marriage. Essentially they are looking for a free nursemaid and a bed warmer.

Based upon Ms. Cooper’s analysis the last place for a black woman to find a man is in the church!

"Black women are interpreting the scriptures too literally. They want a man to which they are 'equally yoked' -- a man that goes to church five times a week and every Sunday just like they do," Cooper said in a recent interview.

"If they meet a black man that is not in church, they are automatically eliminated as a potential suitor. This is just limiting their dating pool."

"The traditional structure and dynamics of black churches, mostly led by black men, convey submissive attitudes to women, Cooper says, encouraging them to be patient -- instead of getting up and going after what they want."

Needless to say I never understood how being single and Christian became a “black women’s issue”. As far as I am aware all Christian churches are using the same basic bible to govern their lives. Quite a few people go to church and do whatever they please on the other six days. Although I’m far from being a “bible thumper” I am aware that Ecclesiastes 7:20 states: For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not. There are no perfect men or women.

Everyone I know of who considers themselves to be a Christian "cherry picks" the verses (they) agree with and ignore those they don't. It always comes back to personal choice.

I too have heard women proclaim: “I’m waiting on God to send me a man.” God has already made 7 billion people and close to half of them are men. It may be a case of expecting too much to have God gift wrap and personally deliver a man to your doorstep. Even lottery winners buy tickets!

Action is required to get anything worthwhile in life. If you needed a job you most likely would not wait on God to provide you with one. You’d go onto monster.com, indeed.com, email resumes, and do some networking. You have to be proactive.

Life rewards those who show up

There will always be people that will find someone or something to blame for their unhappiness. Rarely does anyone advocate looking into the mirror and taking responsibility for their own happiness. Life is a personal journey and our lives are the result of the choices and decisions (we) make. When we choose to play the “blame game” in any area of life it makes us powerless.

One man’s opinion



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Comments 29 comments

Hearts and Lattes profile image

Hearts and Lattes 3 years ago

What about young black couples that meet in church? You know, the boys and girls that went to Sunday school together. I know two married black couples in their early 20s that met this way. Maybe it's the exception? I know most single men aren't hanging out in church though. Good overall advice!


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

Hearts and Lattes, You make a very valid point! Personally speaking I had never considered the church to be a place for hooking up. Apparently I missed out during my single days! LOL! :-)

Thanks for stopping by and posting your comment.


DDE profile image

DDE 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

Interesting a meeting place for singles is not the church, but for getting together and sharing the love of God yes why not, however you have made your point.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

DDE, Thanks for stopping by and posting your comment. I can see it both ways I suppose. If one is looking for a mate who shares their same values they are likely to (believe) there is no better place than the church. On the other hand not everyone who goes to church on Sunday practices the lifestyle prescribed by their religion. :-)

Lastly I really believe church is where you take a "time out" from thinking about all of the (worldly things). Nevertheless I do know some churches that have put together programs for singles and there are more and more Christian online dating sites popping up as well.


gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 3 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

I totally agree with your premise. Many young churchgoing Black women subvert their lives to religion and the church. They are inculcated in the premise from early childhood. They were taught that the Bible and the church are God representatives on earth and they must follow the word so to speak.

Such women do not realize that they do not lead full, exciting lives but half-lives. Many of these women live for and of the church. In other words, their lives revolve 75% around the church. This is sad indeed. The world is a beautiful place and these women are missing out on it. However, they refuse to acknowledge this fact and prefer to live in utter denial. I have female relatives who live like this, on Sundays, they spend their whole day in church and every activity is revolved around the church and religion. That type of life is so myopic and parochial in its premise. Excellent article, dashingscorpio, voted UP!


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

gmwilliams, Thanks so much for your comment and the vote up!

It's a very controversial subject matter. I realize life is a personal journey and each of us gets to (choose) how we want to live. However as the old saying goes: "If you want something different (you) have to do something different." Unfortunately some people insist on staying the course even if they're unhappy. Thanks again for stopping by!


Affinity2010 profile image

Affinity2010 3 years ago from New Orleans, La

Very Excellent hub and straight to the point. However, each person want things in their lives to go perfect and a part of that perfection is to have love in your life and to find a good mate. Some people just have bad luck and can't seem to find a mate no matter what they do. My cousin informed me that she has a friend who practices voodoo in order to get and keep men by washing her underwear in some solution and placing it under her mattress where she makes love with her boyfriend. She swears it works. I believe she is delusional and I am sure she would think because I pray to God to send me a good man to become my husband that I am delusional. To each his own, I guess.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

Affinity2010, Thanks for stopping by and posting your comment. That was some story about voodoo and underwear. I too have heard creepy ideas as well. Some women claim to have placed some of their menstrual blood in a man's food to keep him crazy about them. I'm not sure if that is voodoo or witchcraft but either way it seems CRAZY!


Affinity2010 profile image

Affinity2010 3 years ago from New Orleans, La

Crazy and nasty combined!!!


trusouldj profile image

trusouldj 3 years ago from Indiana

As someone who met my wife in church, it's a shame that Miss Cooper feels that way. If you worship at church where young adults have opportunities to socialize inside and outside of the church, love definitely can be found. I've seen it happen over and over again.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

trusouldj , Thanks for your comment.

I agree with you. If people have found love online, at the beach, in nightclubs, and various other social outings then it stands to reason that a lasting love could also be found in church!

Some people will always find something to blame for their unhappiness.


Evans4life profile image

Evans4life 3 years ago

Church is a place for worship....if you happen to meet your husband or wife there, it is a bonus. Anyone that goes to church for the sole reason of finding a mate, is going for the wrong reason.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

Evans4life, I agree with you!

However I suppose just about any place where someone meets their future spouse most likely is not there for (that) purpose: (grocery stores, parks, beaches, schools, church, or work).

I think there are some people who feel if they meet someone in church they believe this person will not be a liar, cheater, or abusive. In other words (where) you meet for them says "everything" about who the person is! Clearly that makes no sense. The truth is, (who) you meet is always more important than (where) or (how) you met. :-)


Evans4life profile image

Evans4life 3 years ago

Dashingscorpio: Good point and I agree totally with your comments. People forget that church is really a hospital for those spiritually sick. Many have serious issues. They are there to get well. So you'd better really get to know them wherever you meet on this planet!


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

Evans4life, I like your analogy: "church is really a hospital for those spiritually sick." :-) Thanks again for your comments!


Say Yes To Life profile image

Say Yes To Life 3 years ago from Big Island of Hawaii

OOOHHH!

I'll have you know, this issue is DEFINITELY not restricted to black women! When I was living in the Seattle area, a false friend I'll refer to as "Tallony" (see my hub, "My Experience in a Cult" for more on her) invited me to a church singles weekend seminar. It was the most pathetic bunch of old geezers I'd ever had the misfortune to interact with - yet, the women were fighting over the men! That was when I discovered Tallony had been married and divorced 3 times. Incidentally, I was the only black - for that matter, the only ethnic!

A few years later, I read a highly interesting letter in Annie's Mailbox about a woman who had met a man at a Christian singles group. She was wife #5. After the wedding, she found out why; he was horrendously abusive. She managed to escape him, and he moved on to other women in the group, who refused to listen to her warnings (the letter is dated 3/11/06; I don't know if you can find it on the web). I don't know the race of the people involved, but when I showed the letter to my white co-worker, she informed me that wife beaters often prowl Christian singles groups because they're more likely to find submissive women there.

I've visited a number of Christian singles groups, and they all put out a weird vibe at best. In fact, the only good singles group I've ever been to was my former ski club.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago Author

Say Yes To Life , Thanks for pointing out that the same issues arise with all types of people. I can't say I believe the church is keeping women single. However I must admit it does force them to narrow their options.


swilliams profile image

swilliams 3 years ago from Arizona

God leads us to the well but it's up to us to draw the water. Great insight! Voted up useful and interesting! Wonderful Article.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 2 years ago Author

swilliams, Thanks for stopping by and posting your comment.

As you stated very well we are always called upon to take some action. :-)


RealestMotherDear profile image

RealestMotherDear 2 years ago from Louisiana

This reminds me of the most recent boondocks episode.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 2 years ago Author

I've never watched Boondocks but I recall reading the comic strip now and then years ago. Thanks for your comment!


Express10 profile image

Express10 2 years ago from East Coast

Preach Pastor DashingScorpio. Sorry, I just had to say that :) I have worked in the same company as two of these types and it was as if they were in another world. They "give everything to GOD" and seem to do relatively little but "pray on it." Their words, not mine. They tried to push me into going to a church New Year's Eve party/prayer/whatever. I said no way, they made me uncomfortable at work, why would I socialize with them or anyone they knew?

It takes planning and tangible effort to reach goals or accomplish even simple tasks. This includes finding love. And so it is, a fairly large number "take" whatever man comes into their path, too often among the lowest hanging fruit from the tree. I have also noticed that many of these same religious single women go against church teachings and have sex without marriage, are the "other" woman, have babies out of wedlock, etc.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 2 years ago Author

Express10, Amen! :) Thanks for taking the time to post your comment.

There are far too many people who expect God to do everything for them!


PMARTIN 2 years ago

Interesting your list of the only men going to church are scammers..but every woman going to church has a halo. There are just as many Gold diggering women in church as out of church. the only reason they want a man is to get out of debt. The reason they are single is because they are selfish, mean and most..overweight. And please..this submissive part is always so insulting ro everyone but women don't mind scripture that requires a man to lay down his life for her. Bottomline, a black man will probably do better dating outside the church because he wont have high expectations of a holy woman only to be dissappointed that he caught a disgruntal.


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 2 years ago Author

PMARTIN, What you refer to as my "list" about the men going to church is not mine at all. I was quoting an article written by Ms. Cooper which I mention before presenting (her) four categories of men.

Without a doubt there are shady people among both genders!


PMARTIN 2 years ago

This article is simply designed to pull women out of the church. go outside the church to get a good man.....I hope the smart ones see it


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 2 years ago Author

PMARTIN, I agree that (Ms. Deborrah Cooper's article) is about getting women to give up on the idea of finding a man to marry in church or at least get them to relax their requirement that a man has must go to church to be date worthy. I suspect she is saying women are limiting their options and possibly missing out "good men" who don't attend church.

This hub like most that I write encourage self-empowerment, asks people to think for themselves, and avoid playing any "blame game". My article essentially states it's NOT the church's fault that black women are single.


kevin adera profile image

kevin adera 20 months ago from Nairobi

hahaha waiting for God to send me a man! Nice one I have people say that kenyan men don't like going to church so by extension women should expect men dropping from the heavens above in the streets of Nairobi


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 20 months ago Author

Kevin, the "waiting on God to send me a man" is something often said by women here in the U.S. :-)

My guess is they've gotten fed up with their own (choices) disappointing them that they want God to make Mr. Right to appear out of nowhere in their lives. However they'll never know if he (is) "the one" without choosing to say "yes" to go out with him. No man is going to say: "God sent me!" :)

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