37% Of Single Black Women Homeowners Live Alone, Why?
An analysis released last week shows that 37% of Black women who are single and live alone owned a home in 2021.
An analysis by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) released last week shows that 37% of Black women who are single and live alone owned a home in 2021. It also revealed evidence that more Black American homeowners with higher education are choosing singlehood over marriage.
During that same year, data findings revealed that 31.2% of Black folks were married compared to nearly 54% of whites. As for being single, more than 48% of all Black women and 51.1% of Black men had never been married.
Dr. Kris Marsh, a sociologist and associate professor at the University of Maryland, examines the lifestyles of middle-class Black Americans, focusing on destigmatizing singlehood. In her newest book, The Love Jones Cohort, she argues how “racism and gendered racism constrain personal choices.” She also challenges readers to consider how “structural forces and social contexts also fit into the conversation on singlehood.”
“Singlehood looks different for different people and people arrive at singlehood differently,” said Marsh, who is an associate professor at University of Maryland’s College of Behavioral and Social Sciences. “You cannot and should not have a conversation about singlehood without incorporating race into that conversation.”
Black female participants of the Love Cohort‘s research were “hopeful that if they did decide to partner, it would be with an educated Black man,” Marsh wrote in an article. From 2012 to 2022, the percentage of Black adults with a Bachelor’s degree increased from 21.2% to 27.6%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. However, Black women are outpacing Black men in higher education, which can lead to a disparity in resources and social standing.
DIGITAL SEXUAL RACISM
In evidence of Marsh’s arguments, online dating brings to light the deep sexual racism that is less visible in our everyday lives. Black women on mainstream dating apps found that they are targets of violent, racist, and sexist behavior.
Sociologist Celeste Vaughn Curington strongly believes that dating app algorithms “encompass a range of discriminatory designs that encode and amplify inequity.” For example, Currington and her colleagues coined the term “digital-sexual racism,” which refers to how Black daters are rendered “simultaneously hyper-visible and invisible” on dating sites. “They are contacted on dating sites specifically because they are Black but also ignored on other user sites entirely because they are Black.”
RADICAL SELF CARE
Despite the uphill battle, single Black women are still striving to overcome the economic struggles by practicing radical self-care and building wealth. Some are intentional about their single lives. Wayne State University assistant professor Jessica D. Moorman calls that strategic singlehood, or “the intentional practice of enacting or maintaining one’s single status for growth, safety, or exploration.”
They devoted their time single-handedly to pursuing important life goals, including home buying.