” I became known as that girl who was only interested in dark men and suddenly, the body that took me years to become comfortable with became one I was questioning again.
“You have no a**, Erica” one guy commented at one of these parties as LL Cool J’s “Big Ole Butt” blasted through speakers, while another told me he was willing to deal with my lack of a chest because I had “an a** like a dancer.” Many of the songs on the radio by black artists seemed to put emphasis on parts of the body that I was lacking.
In Rochester everyone appeared to me as clones, walking down school halls clad in American Eagle apparel with Aroma Joe’s coffee cups in hand, but at TU everything clicked.
I began attending parties where I was one of the few white people.
Guys would approach me, rarely avoiding grabbing my butt or asking the question, “So you like black guys?
How many times had I said “Mom, I met this guy, he’s white”?
No matter how anxious I was to tell my family about my boyfriend, I felt proud of my interracial relationship, like we were the result of the world uniting and becoming a better place.
Where friends from home had laughed in my face, believing my taste in guys had somehow done a 180 as a result of moving to the city, black guys I currently went to school with were intrigued.
I began receiving attention from darker skinned guys, one even proclaiming with a wink that he had “never had a white girl before” as if conquering a white girl is some badge of honor or just something to check off a list.Flo Rida’s “Can’t Believe It” flowed through party speakers with its lyrics “Damn that white girl got some a** I don’t believe it” and “black girl got some a** it ain’t no secret”, taking me back to feelings of insecurity I started having as a little kid.The first time I had ever questioned my physical appearance was before I even began first grade.Friends asked me what it was like dating someone who is black and giggled asking if it was true about “what they say about size.” One friend admitted “I could never date a black guy because I wouldn’t be able to understand what he was saying.” All stereotypes I had been used to hearing about this unchartered territory.When my relationship eventually ended, the phrase “once you go black, you never go back” rang in my ears.After deciding to enroll at Towson University, friends of mine joked about me going to “the hood” and the violence in the Baltimore area, but I was never worried.