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Since childhood, I’ve known that African-Americans are as eclectic as we wanna be. We are literally assorted chocolates and you never know what you’re going to get when you open the box. But when did Black polygamy become a “the thing” for some of us? And when I say some of us, I’m asking about African-American women in particular.
Last year, I had no clue that it was a “thing” — outside of some Muslims engaging in the practice — until a guy I met at a business lunch sent me a link to check out the lifestyle. First of all, let me say that there was no warning or disclaimer that came with the link he sent. It was just a link sent to my email address from his. We met through a mutual client so I assumed he was sending something that I could actually use in my work life, like a better scheduling app or a code for Uber discounts—something! But it wasn’t. Just a link that lead to me asking who, what, when, why?
Some other ladies from the business lunch told me that they received the link as well and that they were outraged! One older lady in her late 40s felt particularly disrespected, saying how dare he think she’d be remotely interested in that sort of lifestyle. I kind of felt where she was coming from but I later had to side eye her because prior to the invitation to join”Poly Phi Poly,” she tried to tell me ol’ boy was a great catch for someone like me. Not! Luckily for me, I never follow up on dating leads that are thrown in my lap. But I did at least think dude was cool and ultra professional when I met him at the lunch, which is why my reaction to the link wasn’t oh no this negro didn’t but more like, what in the Iceberg Slim hell? And so, my inquisitive self-clicked on the link.
What I found was a group for brothers and sisters who are actually living polygamous lifestyles or trying to find folks to join them so they start building their polygamous families. But what really made my small eyes pop out the sockets like a cartoon character was the influx of African-American women who were down for the cause to share one man with several women. Now, what I gathered from reading people’s posts on the site is the biggest reason why Black people should get with the polygamy program is to build families that are economically untouchable… Okay, so what’s up with all the well-to-do women on the site who were RNs, college grads, and business owners? I would think that since they’re already bringing home the bacon that they’d be cool with one faithful man who could match or exceed what they currently make on the job. A beautiful Black couple who loves God, each other, and can afford to splurge on the finer things sounds legit to me! But the more I scrolled through the site, I saw women hardcore using their best sales pitch to get someone to move them into their homes as a sister wife. Some were even offering couples to come live with them!
I don’t think cooperative economics had a rat’s butt to do with anything for these women. It seemed to me that these ladies were opting for this lifestyle because it’s easier to let a dog roam than to expect him to behave. They would rather come into a situation knowing that their man has multiple women who all know that they are just one of multiple women. That way, they don’t have to face any surprise heartache as a result of being cheated on. That’s my belief and I’m sticking to it. Now, I will say that some other interesting points were made in defense of Black polygamy, such as one sister-wife homeschooling all the children in the unit because Black kids should be taught by people who look like them. That’s an awesome principle that I’m all for. But uh… there’s plenty of schools, both private and public, that have already done this. And if I want to homeschool my baby I can simply find a Black teacher who homeschools. I don’t need to move my husband’s flavor of the month in to help me do that or anything else.
What’s polygamy really about in your opinion?
This article originally appeared on Madame Noire.