The memes we cackle at which ridicule these hoteps may be hilarious, but the high numbers of followers and subscribers they garner suggest that many of us are still struggling with our "strong Black male" problem. I give Black men a lot of leeway. My mother taught me to. She viewed men as emotionally weaker in need of being coddled. I have made efforts in recent times to try to decolonize my dating habits. My conversations with down low men of color can be quite free-flowing. Still, I would never compel a Black man to be open about our relationship in the way I would demand of a white partner. I know too well the impact it would have on their life. The Black men I sleep with are best friends with the South London equivalents of Charlemagne tha God and DJ Envy. Their families would withdraw their love from them and the cloud of homophobia would blight their skies irrevocably. I find sex with them hilarious because pillow talk is peppered with conspiracy theories, slut shaming and advice I have no intention of following. I give a lot of ‘baby mama’ advice which more often than not just boils down to me telling them to listen more and give them more money. When I kiss them goodbye on my doorstep I feel my stomach wrenching because I know the world won’t see their intellect and their promise but will definitely see my harmless lovers as potentially criminal. I worry of them ending up dead or in prison.
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