The Phenomenon of the Middle Class Black Girl

I thought I was the sole observer of this phenomenon until a younger friend of mine mentioned it and we instantly understood each other.

Come on, be honest, you know her.  She grew up with both parents in a beautiful house in a beautiful suburb.  She is her father’s princess and her mother’s understudy.  She is absolutely beautiful.  She’s very intelligent and consistently high grades have placed her in the highest institutions.  She’s most likely a Christian.  She holds a subscription to Vogue, Australian Vogue in fact, as it tends to be way more fabulous.  She hasn’t really seen hardship, and so whatever small trials life throws at her, take the place of hardship in her mind.  She is essentially deluded into thinking Candace Bushnell wrote her life-story first, so she’d have inspiration to write Sex and the City.  She has figured, since she’s Michelle Obama, the man that comes for her has to be a Barack.  No one’s ever told her about herself.  In fact to mention a shortcoming of hers is offensive in the highest order.  She’s a feminist, but not militantly so, that would be rather unbecoming.  She keeps pictures of Audrey Hepburn and quotes from Coco Chanel.  But she also keeps some Kente or Aso Oke because “tribal” is fabulous right now.

She has an insecurity.  Usually it is a desire for a bigger bum or breasts, which is ironically mirrored by the envy of curvier females who desire their more “fashion friendly” figures.  But what she lacks in curves, she more than makes up for in opinions.  She idolises Beyonce as, Beyonce seems to have that perfect balance between sexy and powerful, and balances these on 6-Inch Heels.  Her nails are “beasty” and her hair is “human”.  She needs to be part of a power couple one day so actually she needs Barack/Jay-Z hybrid. She’s absolutely loving life.

She actually has many insecurities. However, while she’s playing Superwoman, there’s no room for weakness or vulnerability in her script.  That’s where the men put down her book.  Admittedly for different men, they may have cut off earlier but essentially it’s the Superwoman that makes most men decide she’s not worth the hassle.  The downfall of this woman is her inability to see out of her own sphere, leaving her less well-rounded than she initially thought she was.  Other girls secretly admire her and hate her for the one time she said something snobby like “I don’t understand why people live in rough neighbourhoods. Why don’t they just move?”  Guys look at her with varying levels of desire ranging from “smash that” to “wife that”, but lets inspect the men that orbit these women.

First there will be the guys who like her but would never do anything about it.  They’ve usually decided on some subconscious level that it would be punching above their weight.  Secondly, will be the guys who believe that all women are the same and they are absolutely wrong.  When their usual advances and tactics fall flat, they’ll usually move on.  The last is the guy who likes a challenge.  He’s also good looking, intelligent, well educated and seemingly willing to put up with her delusions.  The only problem is this guy likes a challenge.  Chasing her is a rush.  Making her smile is a drug. Getting her to fall for him is climatic.  The following relationship itself is tiresome.  It ends quickly.

The last type of guy spots her a mile off so he chooses not to join those orbiting her.  He’s truly irritated by her and thinks she could be so much more if she just weathered a few more of life’s storms.  Maybe he retreats to his lamp-lit desk to write a blog about her but knows he would be nothing more than a mere acquaintance of hers.  He is intrigued as to how she holds up her world view but concedes that he is probably unaware of his own foolishness.  He discusses her with his other friends and they all draw similar opinions of her.  It’s usually a variation of “No chick, is worth all that hassle”.

But what happens in the end to Middle Class Black Girl?  Do the guys just “man-up” and fall in line? Does she ever learn that life will not always go her way?  Does she continue to get her way? I don’t know, ask Candace Bushnell.

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5 thoughts on “The Phenomenon of the Middle Class Black Girl

  1. Woah! This sounds personal!

    As I read this quite a few people popped into my head. My upbringing classifies me as working class but uni and my present occupation would suggest I’m now middle class. I think growing up in a council estate in East London and coming from a single parent household has given me perceptive.

    I am often uncomfortable with the level of materialism and obsession with Beyonce expressed by the girls you described. This girls are so removed from reality, they go on about trials, and I think to my self, really? They live in a bubble and although I am black and middle class, I feel I cannot relate at all!

    Well done Ola! Great commentary on one of the more annoying factions of the ‘Black’ British community.

  2. Pingback: Flashback: Delusions of Superwoman « A Wildflower in Bloom

  3. I see this a lot on British Black Twitter, actually even in South African and Nigerian Twitter makes me think, is it cause they are still young and haven’t experienced hardship as yet that this is their worldview. If i was on the outside looking in i would have said that you described me as a lot of people put me in that category. But like you said “life’s hardships” they make a huge difference in what your prioritize as important.

    I like this a lot. Sometimes i feel that maybe it is easier to be dazed and confused and live in a little bubble unaware of reality … but one thing I do is that eventually as a black female … middle class or not, something or a couple of things will remind you that well you are “black” usually these are the reality shocks that wake these types of girls from their slumber.

    great piece all together.

    xx

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