The Rarely Recognized Route Into The Black Middle-class: Staying Single And Living Alone

Discussion in 'News - Breaking News & Political Forum' started by bubbles12345, Apr 9, 2019.

  1. bubbles12345

    bubbles12345 Well-Known Member

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    Thoughts on this article?

    It's a quick read here: https://blogs.psychcentral.com/sing...middle-class-staying-single-and-living-alone/

    TLDR?

    Here is a quote from the end that summaries the gist of it :look: :

    “A possible implication of this shift is that if black women are achieving middle-class status without marrying, marriage may not, contrary to what has been previously believed, provide much financial benefit or produce positive returns for professional black women in this age group.”
     
  2. kblc06

    kblc06 Well-Known Member

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    I just read this and was going to post lol. If me and my cohort are any indication, the answer is yes :look: (late 20s/ early 30s, high 5 & 6 figure salaries, single, childless, unsquintably black). Sadly, not marrying an equal contributor would result in a net loss for us on an individual level, while being a net gain for a man #ohwell

    Eta: based on me and my bestie's assessments, should nothing change, we should be set to retire at about 55, no later than 60)
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2019
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  3. UmSumayyah

    UmSumayyah Well-Known Member

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    Bw are more likely to be the breadwinner.

    More likely to be the higher earner in a marriage.

    When you factor in other issues it's a no-brainer.
     
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  4. Southernbella.

    Southernbella. Well-Known Member

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    I'm assuming the living alone variable refers to single non-parents because the strongest predictor of poverty for single women is motherhood.

    This is interesting, though. I mentioned the other day that this age group in particular is placing less value on marriage their previous generations. Seems like it's actually beneficial for black folks.
     
  5. RoundEyedGirl504

    RoundEyedGirl504 Well-Known Member

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    Wasn't there an article last year that indicated black women marrying black men decreased their earning power or net worth? This seems to compliment that research.
     
  6. Pat Mahurr

    Pat Mahurr Pun intended

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    The article says that SALA is an effective pathway for women, but not for men. I wonder why.
     
  7. Evolving78

    Evolving78 Well-Known Member

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    We talked about that here too. Women live longer and happier single, since less demands are put on them when it concerns having a husband and children. Men do better emotionally when they have a family. It gives them balance.
     
  8. Crackers Phinn

    Crackers Phinn Either A Blessing Or A Lesson.

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    Child support.
     
  9. chocolat79

    chocolat79 Well-Known Member

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    I can believe this article wholeheartedly. I'm married now, but it's so much "easier" to move as a BW these days in terms of career and opportunities. I was/am making the most money I've made in my field (which can be limited), mostly because I was able to move across the country with no attachments and have saved way more money as a single woman that I would if I had married earlier.

    Also, I was watching a couple YT videos of BW who were living abroad, specifically Korea, because they could pay off their student loans. So these women will come back to the States debt-free. One woman had paid off her student loans in 3 years. So unless you meet someone awesome, being a single BW with no children can be very beneficial if you look at it as an opportunity.
     
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  10. Pat Mahurr

    Pat Mahurr Pun intended

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    You may be kidding, but that was my first thought. It isn’t so much marital status that determines whether you move from one class to another but whether you have children.
     
  11. Black Ambrosia

    Black Ambrosia Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    Any idea what this is??? The others are easily measurable but I'm not even sure how you'd define an occupational prestige score.
     
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  12. Southernbella.

    Southernbella. Well-Known Member

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    Different fields use slightly different scores but generally, it's exactly what you think it is with doctors at the top, dentists, judges, attorneys, professors, on and on down the list.
     
  13. sunnieb

    sunnieb Well-Known Member

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    My key take away isn't necessarily the lack of marriage, it's the lack of children.

    I know the unmarried and childless BW in my circle are deliriously happy. One recently got married (late 40s) and some of the others have SOs, but no kids. All of them have strong family ties and real friends.

    Like someone mentioned, having children is a huge factor in BW being in poverty.

    Not sure where I'm going with my thoughts here. I just want BW to live their best life no matter what they choose to do. :yep:
     
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  14. Black Ambrosia

    Black Ambrosia Well-Known Member

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    I guess. It seems to be adding an unnecessary level of subjectivity. While prestige may be associated with upper middle class status I don’t consider it to be a criteria.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019
  15. Crackers Phinn

    Crackers Phinn Either A Blessing Or A Lesson.

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    Not kidding at all. I've known a lot of single fathers who lived alone. Child support is a fixed expense that rarely decreases and doesn't go away for 20 years. I have not met one single woman living alone who was paying child support.
     
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  16. MomofThreeBoys

    MomofThreeBoys Well-Known Member

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    I’m married with kids and can see the alure of being single but denying myself motherhood would have been a non-starter for me. I rather have a reduced net worth.
     
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  17. gimbap

    gimbap Well-Known Member

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    I can see this, but I've also said I could save more and pay down debt faster if I lived with someone else (in other words, shacked up or got married) because I could saving on housing expenses. But of course that would only work if I lived with a man who could pay the bills, and that's the only way I'm living with a man anyway
     
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  18. intellectualuva

    intellectualuva Well-Known Member

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    This is me and my single childless friends. I get it.
     
  19. Kanky

    Kanky Well-Known Member

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    Marriage to the wrong man or having children with the wrong man is bad for your financial situation so this doesn’t surprise me. Still black women need more options for socio-economic upward mobility than staying single for life. That just sounds depressing. Marrying your equal or marrying up usually leads to a higher net worth.

    Also I read the summary of the report that they linked to and it is terrible.

    https://familystoryproject.org/wp-c...-Fundamentalism_Exec-Summary_Family-Story.pdf

    The Case Against Marriage Fundamentalism: Embracing Family Justice for All documents how conservatives, with help from centrists and liberals, have promoted the supremacy of the married family to the detriment of historically marginalized people and progressive policy goals.


    Even though the have a child out of wedlock thing is a proven failure they are still trying convince black women that they should do so. The authors are a white male lawyer, a white woman feminist and a black man. No black women. They are probably all comfortably married while encouraging black women to struggle.

    These well educated white people are trying to use black women to further their “progressive policy goals” while enjoying an upper middle class life.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019
  20. kblc06

    kblc06 Well-Known Member

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    There was an article CNN touched on last year that showed that black men married to black women actually are more likely to be middle class as we tend to be larger economic contributors in the relationship ( when compared to other groups). But even on their own, black men's poverty rate has decreased significantly since the 1950-70s:


    Black men are succeeding in America
    By W. Bradford Wilcox, Wendy R. Wang, and Ronald B. Mincy

    Updated at 4:33 PM ET, Tue July 3, 2018

    Editor's Note:W. Bradford Wilcox (@WilcoxNMP), a professor of sociology at the University of Virginia, is a senior fellow at the Institute for Family Studies and a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Wendy R. Wang is director of research at the Institute for Family Studies. Ronald B. Mincy is Maurice V. Russell Professor of Social Policy and Social Work Practice and director of the Center for Research on Fathers, Children and Family Well-Being at Columbia University. The opinions expressed in this commentary are theirs.
    (CNN) — In recent years, much of the racial news in America has been sobering, if not depressing. Trayvon Martin. Tamir Rice. Walter Scott. Ferguson. Baltimore. And Charlottesville. While many public commentators, like Ta-Nehisi Coates, have underlined the enduring character of racism in America, and the ways in which America's racial divide has exacted a particular kind of toll on black men and boys, there is today, unheralded, good news about African-American men.
    [​IMG]
    W. Bradford Wilcox
    [​IMG]
    Wendy Wang
    [​IMG]
    Ronald B. Mincy
    Despite a portrait of race relations that often highlights the negative, especially regarding black men (many Americans, according to a 2006 study by the Washington Post, Kaiser Family Foundation, and Harvard University,believed that crime, unemployment, and poverty are endemic among African-American men), the truth is that most black men will notbe incarcerated, are not unemployed, and are not poor -- even if black men are more likely than other men to experience these outcomes.
    In fact, millions of black men are flourishing in America today.
    Our new report, "Black Men Making It In America," spotlights two pieces of particular good news about the economic well-being of black men.
    First, the share of black men in poverty has fallen from 41% in 1960 to 18% today. Second, and more importantly, the share of black men in the middle or upper class -- as measured by their family income -- has risen from 38% in 1960 to 57% today. In other words, about one-in-two black men in America have reached the middle class or higher.
    This good news is important and should be widely disseminated because it might help reduce prejudicial views of black men in the society at large, and negative portrayals of black men in the media. It should also engender hope among all African-Americans -- particularly young black males.




    Related Video: Racial bias is not just a Starbucks problem 03:41
    Correcting overly negative depictions and attitudes regarding black men is important because they shape how black men are treated, and how black men view their potential. Alan Jenkins, executive director of Opportunity Agenda, a social justice organization, noted that "Research and experience show that expectations and biases on the part of potential employers, teachers, health care providers, police officers, and other stakeholders influence the life outcomes of millions of black males."
    So, what routes are black men taking to make it in America?
    Tracking black men from young adulthood through their 50s using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979, we identified three factors that are associated with their success: education, work, and marriage.
    Black men who worked full-time, had some college education, or were married were much more likely to be members of the middle or upper class by the time they got to their 50s. We found, for instance, that the odds that black men make it to the middle or upper class are at least three times higher for those men who marry, compared to their peers who never married. Their financial well-being is higher partly because married black women contribute a higher share of income to the household than other married women.
    Adding to the chances of black men achieving middle class and higher status is the US military. We found that serving in the military was associated with a 72% increase in the odds that black men made it into the middle class or higher as 50-something men.
    By providing stable work, good health care, housing, and opportunities for advancement, by championing virtues such as duty, responsibility, loyalty, and perseverance, and by pushing racial integration, the US military has served as an important route into the middle class.
    [​IMG]
    Related Article: My only crime was being a black man in America

    Moreover, the US military is also known for its marriage-oriented culture, and we found that black men who served in the military as young men were much more likely to be married later, at ages 29-37, compared to their peers who did not serve. This marriage advantage played a role in boosting their later odds of success.
    Of course, the story our report tells is not all rose-colored. Black men are significantly less likely to make it into the middle and upper class than their white and Asian-American peers. The odds of black men in their 50s making it to the middle class were about 60% lower for those who were charged with a crime as a young adult.
    Given that racial segregation, poverty, and bias affect the odds that young black males get caught up in the criminal justice system, systemic racism limits the economic fortunes of black men. What's more: right now, only a small minority of black men graduate from college: 17%. Schools and colleges need to do more to identify, recruit, and support young black men so they are accepted, attend, and graduate from four-year colleges and universities in the US.
    Follow CNN Opinion

    Join us on Twitter and Facebook
    Amidst all that's wrong about race in America today, we cannot lose sight of two sets of social facts: today, about one-in-two black men have made it in America, and these men have traveled routes into the middle class that can be replicated.
    The evidence suggests that if more Americans knew how many black men were succeeding, and more about the routes they are taking, it would reduce racial prejudice and engender hope among today's young black males that they too have a shot at making it in America.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019
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  21. Farida

    Farida Well-Known Member

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    The two biggest ways to have a lower socioeconomic status are to 1) have kids OOW 2) get divorced.

    Facts.

    We all know or some of you are black single moms living your best life but you are the exceptions. Single black men who pay child support are broke. Supporting two households versus one in divorce is expensive...or for the higher earner divorce leads to child support and alimony.

    Live your best life. And if it’s not on paper, it didn’t happen. Get your legal life right.
     
  22. sunnieb

    sunnieb Well-Known Member

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    @Farida thanks for mentioning divorce. That's financial killer for BW for dang sure!

    Add in the fact that there are multiple marriages, multiple children with each husband and there it is.

    We all have a limited time on this earth. If you keep having to reset and start over (after each divorce), it's near impossible to build wealth.
     
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  23. nubiangoddess3

    nubiangoddess3 Well-Known Member

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    But to make it into the middle class Black women must pay student loans down. Black women in America with degrees have a negative wealth. So, while one can earn a higher wages while being single, due to debt very few blacks in America are in the middle class.

    Also this article is confusing wages with wealth. They are two totally different things.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2019
  24. Crackers Phinn

    Crackers Phinn Either A Blessing Or A Lesson.

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    Especially when that staying single for life means being in a relationship where you do everything as a married couple except make it legal. Everybody throws Oprah out as the new model for monied women in relationships but no doubt Steadman standard of living is subsidized by Oprah's. I don't care what kind of old money family dude come from, he wouldn't live how he live or play how he play if it wasn't on Oprah's dime but the difference between their dynamic and the average upwardly mobile middle class chick is every dollar that Oprah spends on Steadman (and Gail) is a tax write off.

    Yep. But at the same time black women as a collective embrace struggle as a virtue so those folks are selling it to the right audience.
     
  25. Southernbella.

    Southernbella. Well-Known Member

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    That's the problem with class designations. They can be and usually are based on several factors. But you absolutely can be middle class with a negative wealth.

    Just an aside, but black researchers have been saying for years that it's pointless to use the same standards for white folks and black folks when it comes to class status because historically, status in our community wasn't necessarily tied to wages (which makes sense given the wage gap and lack of opportunities for employment). My great grandfather was a Pullman Porter, which was considered the first middle class job available to AAs. To whites, that would have been considered a servant position. So it's tricky. And I find any researcher who doesn't acknowledge this to be intellectually dishonest.
     
  26. scoobygirl

    scoobygirl Well-Known Member

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    One of my great grandfathers was shift supervisor at a phosphate mine and the other was a Pullman Porter both were consider solid middle class jobs. They provided a comfortable life for their families in all black communities in the south. This version of middle class made sense for the time period.
     
  27. Crackers Phinn

    Crackers Phinn Either A Blessing Or A Lesson.

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  28. MilkChocolateOne

    MilkChocolateOne Well-Known Member

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  29. Crackers Phinn

    Crackers Phinn Either A Blessing Or A Lesson.

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    It's okay. I'm sure he's got plenty of takers.
     
  30. Brwnbeauti

    Brwnbeauti Well-Known Member

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    Pass
     
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