Bag lady you gone miss your bus
You can’t hurry up 
Cause you got too much stuff
When they see you comin
Niggas take off runnin
From you it’s true oh yes they do

Erykah Badu

When discussing issues as sensitive as relationships within the African-American community, I realize that statements from self-centered narcissistic sisters such as ‘why can’t black men measure up to our demands’ are pivotal moments. Mr. Harvey realized as much and masterfully cut through the shibboleth and placed the onus for their not being able to find a man right where it belonged, at the feet of these particular, not every, professional black woman.

Harvey asked a simple, yet revealing query to the women who ranged in age from mid-thirties through their forties; ‘what type of man are you looking for?’ It was at this moment that these formally educated, yet hopelessly silly, women began to lay out their prerequisites for a mate. One sister quipped, “He must be at least 6”5”, earn at least six figures, and have nice shoes.” All of the women giggled and laughed as if they were school girls sharing an inside joke. Another sister interjected that in addition to that she needed him to “dance well, dress well, and have the right professional job.”

As if things could not get any more ridiculous, the craziest of the crew chimed in with fifty characteristic/qualities/material items that her future husband needed possess prior to their meeting. To her credit she remained consistent in her ridiculous statements by relating a staunch mule-like resistance to budging on her demands; because, as she poignantly put it, ‘she deserved such a man’. And just when I thought that things could not get any worse, another “highly-educated” professional sister related her demand for the man that was “fortunate” enough to be chosen by her, he must bring her to orgasm by penetration and orally on a nightly basis.

A stunned, yet still quick-witted, Steve Harvey immediately retorted, “Are you willing to do the same?” Faced with Harvey’s question, she, and the others, ceased their girlish laughter and simply stared forward as if he had boorishly insulted them with such an inquiry.
Their collective silence was revealing as it signaled what I already knew, that they were too busy creating these extravagant lists to reflect upon what it was they were offering this man they claimed to desire. Although the women on this show would consider the suggestion sacrilegious, maybe, just maybe, they are the one’s who are failing to measure up to the expectations of African-American men. Such a possibility never crosses the minds of self-centered narcissistic professional sisters who have arrogantly operated as if they were not only the epitome of womanhood, but also cursed by the God’s to be desired by every man walking on the earth. They fail to consider that maybe quality Black men, meaning those that they enviously see their “less accomplished” sisters married to, not to mention the seething disdain and covetousness that arises from the depths of their souls if the woman is of another race, are less interested in their material acquisitions, graduate school degrees, money, car, and professional status and more interested in how their lives could intertwine.

At the risk of shattering the fragile egos of self-centered narcissistic well-educated haughty professional Black women, I must relate a truism spoken by the Rev. Dr. Johnny R. Heckard; “education has never done anything for the heart.” And for Black men seeking to forge a productive and happy union with a Black woman, the arrogance and overbearing nature that many, certainly not all, professional African-American women display causes them to avoid such sisters like the plague. Such women fail to understand that eligible, meaning marriageable, African-American men could care less about your college degree, professional career, or car. Considering the disruption that we all as adults realize can flow from a bad relationship, we are more concerned with who you are, not what you have.

There is a popular saying that self-centered narcissistic professional black women should honor that says, ‘if you do what you always did, you gon’ get what you always got.’ I say that as suggestion to them that maybe, just maybe, they may want to consider significantly altering the package that they are offering Black men; obviously, the current one is neither enticing nor desired by good brothers. However, this re-packaging has absolutely nothing to do with a new dress, a shorter skirt, red bottom shoes, Gucci, Prada, or some other inane European designer’s clothing or fragrance. Rather, this alteration begins with significant internal reflection and a bit of honesty.

Pertinent questions that every highly-educated, fine, professional, and gorgeous sister needs to ask herself are: Are you happy with yourself? Are you overbearing and therefore in need of relaxing a bit? Are you emanating female welcoming energy or masculine domineering energy when meeting/dating men? Who are you once all of the education, professional success, and material accruements are stripped away? Do you have the ability to live in the NOW?
I have lived long enough to realize that many professional sisters are executing a charade that is aimed at convincing others, sometimes even themselves, of their desire to have a relationship or traditional family. I refer to this as a charade for self-centered narcissistic professional black women because its genesis is not from within them, rather the result of societal pressures and familial expectations. If you are involved in the aforementioned charade, do everyone a favor, most importantly yourself, and drop it; you do not have to get married. Embrace your life and keep doing you.

For those of you who actually are seeking a relationship with a marriageable Black man, do yourself a favor, drop the ridiculous lists, get naked, go and stand in front of the mirror and realize that the man who you ultimately end up with, albeit fortunate and lucky, is not getting everything that he desired by joining in a union with you. Just deal with the reality that you “ain’t all that”. Truthfully, none of us are.

Dr. James Thomas Jones III


  1. I find Dr. Jones’ column ridiculous on its face. But more than that, I’m growing weary of the continuing discussion about where all of the good Black men are. It’s a petty and misguided concept that is totally inaccurate. I have filled all of the squares and I have a lovely Black woman who fills them too. The problem was it took quite a while for me to get to the point where I wanted to settle down… In the meantime I had been pretty full of myself and selfish.
    Black men are graduating from college by the thousands each year and they have been for decades! They are achieving success on levels never before seen in this country. Yes, some are seen (for no good reason) as threatening, and even though they are equipped and qualified, they face needless challenges along the professional ladder. Still they represent a significant percentage of the professional workforce.
    The problem is not scarcity of quality Black men. The problem is not haughty Black women. It is an interesting topic to discuss if you are delusional but it is not a real problem as characterized in the article. There are two cultural problems in play here however. The first, (sadly) is that traditional family and relationship values have changed or are changing. We have moved into a “Baby Mama / Baby Daddy” cultural comfort zone as even many (though not all) professional Black men seem to avoid marriage or perhaps real commitment until they have had their fill of their player days. And in my experience, (some) accomplished Black women can be VERY judgmental and critical of Black men to the point of being mean-spirited.
    What it takes to find the proper partner is patience, preparation and growth. And… perhaps a little luck.
    But for heaven’s sake, let’s stop putting each other down!

  2. From any perspective first reaction on see a fine sister or brother is ‘ she’s/he’s fine damn! Strong black sister or not when they see fine! The rest is out the window
    Dosnt matter love fine lovers

  3. “Hot criminal” Jeremy Meeks, a handsome, light skinned, blue eyed Black man. Meeks’ mug shot went viral mid-June when he was arrested for numerous state charges. It was announced that Meeks would also be facing a federal gun charge. Yet, despite his criminal record, countless well educated, professional Black women fawned over the seemingly sexy felon. These women also raised money for his enormous bail. These would be the same women that complain about not having the perfect Black man, or Black men not meeting their responsibilities. Now Meeks has no credit, no education, no job, but that does not stop intelligent Black women fro highly desiring him. By the way, he is married to a White woman. Now I am not hating on the brother, because I have witnessed this scenario for decades. My father looked nothing like Meeks, but he was sort of a non criminal ‘bad boy’ and my mother was faithful and loved him till she died. My son is a ‘bad boy’ and girls actually fight, and I mean physically fight, over him. I say all that to say this, I do not understand women.

    1. I understand your comments wholeheartedly. Why humans do what they do is a mystery that seemingly comes out of the blue most of the time. Thanks for participating in this discussion.

  4. i agree with what your saying because women do have too many standards for a man to meet rather than just excepting the good and the bad and not out to change the man to fit into the category they want their man to be in.

  5. When I met my husband in 2001, I knew that he would be the right man for me. He was kind, loving, hard working and had a vision of what he wanted to accomplish in the future. Both of us had nothing when we started our relationship. He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and I’m working on my Criminal Justice degree. I have never thought of him as not being a good man because he provides and loves his family dearly. All I expected from him is to be a good father and husband, and that he is. Alot of women look at other people’s relationships and say that they want better or they want the same thing. Just judging the boo by its cover isn’t enough. You have to put in work and compromise with your significant other. Educational achievements is not a requirement for obtaining a good man, so if that’s the idea that most college student have, that mentality needs to be broken. Make room for disappointment or prepare to be alone.

  6. I know this attitude exists but I don’t trust Steve Harvey or American (fake) Reality TV. Could this be a setup to, once again, highlight African American dysfunction? Would the show have been acceptable in speaking of the massive prison population taking black men off the streets and making them unemployable, the outrageous cost of higher ed, or crumbling K-12 infrastucture, poverty, etc.?

  7. As a read the commentaries by various women it appears that either you have misinterpreted the reading or it just went over your head. If you read the commentary critically; it is not implying that Black men do not admire Black women with high education. It implies that African American women measure African American males with unrealistic measuring rods. The man has to be this way or this way or that way; however, do our women measure themselves with the same ruler? I used to judge African American women from a fantastical vantage point until I did one important thing- GREW THE HELL UP! Question: If an educated Black woman wants or desires her fantasy- WHAT ARE YOU BRINGING TO HIS TABLE BESIDES A DEGREE AND PUSSY!

  8. As I did not see the Steve Harvey interview, I cannot comment on the interview. But based on your commentary, it appears to me that they chose a panel of professional women similar to the six-o-clock news anchor; the most ridiculous and ignorant bunch they could find. So many of us (male and female) are forced products of our environments. I thank you for your perspective, however, the group of professional WOMEN that I encounter are more worried about a man accepting them for who they are, and finding a man of integrity and character, rather than dissecting trivial outer coverings. Most professional women I know will buy their man the shoes they want to see him in before they pass him over for such frivolities. Again, I question the sampling of the panel in comparison to REAL Sistahs. Reality is we all want love. Reality is we are not all getting it (married or not). I’m just sayin …

    1. Thank you for your commentary. And I agree that these women were not an accurate sampling of the sisters that I have dealt with and come across. However, their behavior was so egregious that I felt that I needed to address it.

  9. But how is this any different from the way educated, professional, narcissistic black men choose women by their weight, height, bra size, butt shape, feet, hair, ability to cook or perform cunnilingus? It is insulting to say that you are not interested in a woman’s accomplishments such as her degrees, career, talents and acquisitions; especially when we have beaten the odds to obtain them. That is what many of us would like for you to admire in us rather than the size of our breasts or the pout of our lips. We have also developed an inner peace from becoming financially stable, by the way, which means that we are not dependent upon men to give us the good things in life anymore. Women have changed! Isn’t it time for the men to change too?

    1. Allison, Allison, Allison. I agree with your contention that it is no different when men behave so shallow. Although women, and men, have achieved professionally, we do not lay down with those degrees, we lay down with what we hope is a whole person. Once again, this post was written towards a particular sector of women, not all sisters.

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