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“When women are dating more than one man at once, they also appear to have a high-value status is the eyes of men.

"[But] too often, we still have a very antiquated idea that marriage is the validating metric for them.

Anybody who is living outside of marriage or in advance of it is made to feel somehow incomplete.” According to recent data by the Pew Research Center, lots of people are living outside of marriage.

They argue that black women are often encouraged to choose advanced education, but sometimes at the expense of personal relationships.

Carter recalls that when she decided to go to graduate school at age 21, marriage was not on her horizon."I thought either you do school or you do marriage ...

There’s nothing wrong with that, and I don’t judge them for doing that. Simply put, by then you know what you want and you don’t give in to any bullshit.

I just mainly don’t like that when we have conversations, I feel like I have nothing to contribute.” “I mean if you can’t find your perfect match by age 40, will you ever find him? If a guy isn’t right for me on date one, I don’t ever see him for a date two.

In fact, only half of adults over the age of 18 are married—and four in 10 Americans say they believe marriage is becoming obsolete all together.

But while these numbers point to a shifting change in gender norms, as Rebecca points out, there's still that lingering pressure.

but never thought of them as being able to co-exist," she says. She points to a sense of obligation felt by many black women to break socioeconomic barriers that have hindered their predecessors.

That pursuit, she says, can overshadow other goals."We may have become distracted," Hill says.

If six months into a relationship, there are blaring red flags, I walk away.