This season of “Iyanla: Fix My Life” has been deeply insightful. Reality TV has exploited the image of the Black woman beyond measure and it’s extremely brilliant how Iyanla is using the exact same format to showcase the healing of Black women.
Although this season is dedicated to healing the myth (or reality) of the “Angry Black Woman,” there are some golden nuggets that Black Guys can glean from watching:
1.)Black men are responsible for creating a safe space for black women– Black women have an extremely unique experience in the world. It’s important that black men create a nurturing space where a woman feels comfortable leaning into her man. Within that safe space, honest and open conversation can take place. With that conversation, transparency and healing can take place.
2.)Patience is key – This sounds extremely basic, but you’d be surprised at how many people miss this. Many times an “Attitude,” is a protective barrier. If you love and care for the woman you’re with, make sure you follow Step 1, and be patient with her.
3.)You’re just as angry as she is – From the repetitive instances of black men being killed at the hands of police officers, to gang violence, to the issues that come with being in Corporate America, Black Men have a lot on their plates as well. It’s important that men look in the mirror to ensure we aren’t transmitting our rage to our women. The anger we see in them, may be the anger we we in ourselves.
4.)Show her that pain and silence are not the norm within your relationship – One of the biggest revelations from this season of “Fix My Life” is that many black women are taught to remain silent when they are in pain. Furthermore, the “Angry” attitude people witness is sometimes the byproduct of negative emotions that have been suppressed and built up over time. Create the space for communication so that small issues can be handled as they arise.
5.)Your word (and consistency) are your bond – A repetitive theme heard over and over is that Black men are not trustworthy. From family members to previous relationships, many black women have learned to not place too much stock into the words of black men. It’s really simple – Admit when you’re wrong, keep your word, and show up when you say you’re going to show up.
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This article is not intended to cast stereotypes on black women. It is a perspective piece from my personal experiences and dialogue with black women and black couples.