Harmonic Connections PLUS

"An educated individual is an empowered individual."

Relationship Goals

We are pleased to offer these resources based on Dr. Andrea Little Mason's research titled Non-Conventional Gender Roles in Relationship Education Curricula for African Americans: A Content Analysis.


Religion and Relationships
Christian institutions continue be foundational in setting the expectations for the ideal model of the family, where men are the financial providers and women care for the home and children. However, some couples in healthy relationships have never reflected this model. And some continue to maintain traditional beliefs about predetermined gender roles, even though these gender roles are not realistic to most people in there everyday lives.

Understanding Your Role
Modern expectations for romantic partnerships are different than traditional gender roles. While in the past, gender role expectations were predefined and men and women’s roles were clearly defined, currently the roles that men and women have in committed relationships are more diverse. Most often, the roles that men and women play in romantic partnerships are determined by individual couples.

P.I.E.S. Dimensions of Romantic Partnerships
There is no one size-fits-all standard for gender roles that works for all couples. While considering different ways to look at roles in relationships, it may be intimidating for some and overwhelming for others to think outside box about what men and women are able to contribute to their romantic partnerships.

P.I.E.S. in Black Couple Partnerships
Historians agree that the historical context of African Americans cannot be compared with the majority culture. During centuries of legal enslavement, U.S. laws did not allow marriage between African Americans, still African American men and women recognized their own partnerships as they worked alongside one another in manual labor. The resiliency of the family spirit shows the uniqueness of gender roles among African Americans.