IT IS SO true that "we have an entire generation of dysfunctional families."

And it's also true that "Black women head the majority of our households."

Fatimah Ali (op-ed, April 30), you go on to say that too many men "are precisely the type of men that we don't want our daughters to marry." True, too.

It all starts before the child is conceived. Women have a choice as to who they get pregnant by. Black women, if a man has children by two, three or more women, and he is not providing for them, what makes you think he is going to provide for yours?

If a man is unemployed and can't provide for himself, why would you even consider having sex with him knowing there is a possibility of bringing a child into this world?

And, black women, stop thinking if you get pregnant that your so-called man is going to stick around.

We have a long journey before we get back to decades ago when there were family values, and black men standing up to their responsibilities.

But a little advice to black women from a black man:

As a woman, you can teach your daughter to respect herself and her body so that we can possibly break the cycle.

Unfortunately, you can't teach a boy how to be a man, but you can make better choices when selecting a man.

Eugene K. Epperson