I want to be White!
White parents are commonly faced with a puzzling issue. Even when there are black mirrors around, their child of color still wants to be white. How do they begin to help their children understand the value of being different? As a Black woman raising Black children there are times when I may need to reinforce this lesson to my own children, but for White parents, I often ask them what they believe the value in being Black is.
What's interesting is that WAP often equate the value with the color itself. I hear things like, "People pay money to get that skin color" or "You will always look young" or "It's so beautiful, like mahogany or cinnamon, or whatever object they think of...". Is this what you think of when you feel something is valuable?
Though I love people from all cultures, I believe being Black is one of my superpowers. That's right, I love Black Girl Magic, and why shouldn't I? To me, Black people have a richness and legacy that is amazing. Our history is full of royals, explorers, scientists, scholars, trendsetters, musical genius, entrepreneurs, and I could go on...We provide the BAM in a lot of things that can seem bland. When I look at commercials, so many brands are being influenced by hip-hop culture, our hairstyles, and fashion choices. The American economy was built on the backs of my people, and is the foundation for the wealth many experience today. What's not to love?
I'll ask one of my previous questions again. What about Black people is valuable to you? If you struggle with this question, and you are considering adopting/fostering a Black child, or you already have, think about how you will convey this message to them. I believe every parent has the desire to help their child feel comfortable in the skin they are in. When dealing with Transracial adoption or foster care, the parents have to be more diligent because it's easy to get comfortable. I feel it first hand as a Black parent as I don't have to think about race all of the time because there are some behaviors and beliefs that my children will pick up simply through modeling. What are you modeling for your child of color?