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Saturday, March 3, 2012

"I don't like black people..."

This is not my statement!
This post is not meant to offend anyone or degrade anyone in any way, shape or form!  If this offends you, I'm truly sorry.  However, I think it should be talked about and it fits in here.  I'd also appreciate any feedback you may have on the subject  :)

I knew from the first time my niece spent the night with us that she was afraid of black people.  She was fine being in our house with my nephews, but she never stayed with us alone until she was 2.  Then for some reason, she was scared to death of C's daddy- who is, obviously, a black man. 
Even though he talked to her in a sweet voice and she watched me and my kids give him hugs and kisses to show he was nice, my niece was still scared.  So scared that she didn't move off the couch the rest of the night- not even to go to the bathroom!
I didn't make a big deal of it- she was just a baby who was never around any black people, or really anyone without her mom and dad there.  Besides that, she had never been at our house alone and was scared.  I know that a lot of times kids are less scared if their parents are around!  But C's dad insisted she was scared of him because he was black.

Last weekend, we were visiting my mom and my sister came over with my niece and nephews.
My niece, who is 3 now, came up to me and said "I don't wanna see B! (C's dad) I don't want to go to your house!"    I asked her why not, and she wouldn't give me an answer, but she looked very scared.  I decided to just come out and ask...
"Is it because he's black?"
My niece nodded her head and said "I don't like black people!"
I tried not to take offense to it- she is just a 3 year old little girl.  Actually, I even laughed about it!
But then, I started thinking and wondered WHY doesn't she like black people?! 
Why? Because she hasn't been around many, maybe (even though she's had her whole life of 3 years to get used to C's dad).  Maybe she was just agreeing with me- she didn't have an answer, so she went along with the first reason she heard???
Or maybe, it's because she's being raised by a family who puts black people down...  Maybe it's because everyone says C's dad is going to come get her to scare her into behaving. 
Most likely, it's because instead of my sister (or anyone else) talking to my niece and telling her that black people are not 'bad', they are regular people and they aren't going to hurt you, everyone laughs and thinks it's the funniest thing that she's scared of black people and admits it.
One thing I know is that when you're taught to hate certain people, you just do because that's what you were taught.  I'm ashamed to admit this, but I'm going to anyway...  When I was a kid, I remember my whole family being afraid of black people and talking bad about them.  For whatever reason, I was always fascinated by them and couldn't understand why I shouldn't like them.  When we were driving anywhere and saw a black person, we were told "Lock your door and don't look at them!"... So that's what we did.  It wasn't until I actually got to know a black person that I realized they are just like anyone else.  I had a very rough childhood (I won't get into all the details), but my mom's friend and her black husband let us in their home anytime we needed or wanted to be there and he not only treated us nicely, he treated us like we were the same!  Oh, I could go on forever about this topic and I could tell you some crazy stories you wouldn't believe!

Anyway, later on I tried to explain that black people are just like her- I even told her C and Mr. C were half black.  She acted a little scared, but she said she didn't believe me. 
C had one of her black Cabbage Patch Kid dolls with her, and my niece was running away every time anyone picked it up!  She yelled anytime C came near her with the doll.  When I told her C's dad was coming over, she ran to the bedroom screaming and crying : /
Everyone else thinks it's funny, but I can't help feeling a little resentful.  My kids got mad that she kept saying she didn't like black people too.  She kept going up to all of us, putting her arm next to ours and saying   "You're not black- you're white like me!"  But my kids know who they are, and they kept telling her "We're half black!.. Does that mean you don't like us?"   :(
I explained to my kids that she is just a little girl who has only known one black person- who she hears everyone talking bad about- and she doesn't know any better.  I still feel bad though, because I want my kids to love themselves and not feel like they are so much different than my side of the family.  Because they aren't- people are people, no matter what their race!  My kids (mostly C) already hear one negative comment after another about their hair, which sometimes makes them want hair like mine and I have to counter each negative comment with 10 positive ones...  I just want them like the way they look.  Yes my niece is only 3 now, but what if her attitude towards black people never changes?  What if she decides later that she doesn't like my kids? I honestly don't care- I'll keep them away from anyone who doesn't like them! 
I don't make too big of a deal about it, even though I do wish my sister would set her straight instead of encouraging her fear.

This type of thing is the exact reason I decided to start this blog.  I want C to know that she is not alone, she is normal and beautiful.  She needs and deserves to see other little girls like herself with her hair type and I feel that the positive comments people leave about her hair are doing her self esteem good!

So what do you think about this?  Is it normal kid behavior, and would you be offended?  Would you feel bad for your kids?  Also, is this something you're dealing with now or have dealt with in the past?



  1. WOW im speechless, I really hope your sister stops encouraging this behavior. Maybe have a heart to heart talk about this. This behavior isn't fair to your kids. She is 3, so it's the parents job to teach her what's right.

  2. I live in the same type of situation.... But so far I have been lucky and everyone in my family has accepted my daughter(at least to my face), They havent had to have much contact with her dad because he works nights and sleeps during the day, and in his spare time he coaches city league basketball...
    Anyway, I know how you feel- for a long time my brother kept a rebel flag on his truck and used the "N" word all the time..... I finally got madd and asked him if he thought Destiny was a "N" and did he love her--- he said no I dont think she is and of course I love her---- So I told him that by doing and saying bad things about her race would eventually make her hate him... It was much more heated convo than that, but I guess it finally sunk in because he took the rebel flag stuff out of his truck and quit talking like that----

    I personally believe your sister/family ignore that what they are teaching your neice is bad, because they hope that it will prevent her from ending up like you..... I have a cousin that does that with his kids, just for that reason.
    I think:
    You should have a serious talk with your sis/family and explain how it makes you and your kids feel and tell them if they dont fix the situation, you just wont be able to be around them anymore-because you cant put your kids through that kind of treatment.....

  3. I'm sorry that you and your kids have to hear things like that. And it is definitely something that is being said to her to make her not like ” black” people. I say that because my children did not even know what black or white was until at least first grade. When my oldest was in kindergarten his best friend was white. When asked to describe him he said that he was ” pink with yellow hair and polka dots on his face. They describe themselves and my husband as brown and I'm pinkish husband and I made it a point not to discuss race with our children so they wouldn't think that that was an important part of the person. But some people do make race the first thing they want to know about someone like that is a returning factor in whether that person is good or evil...I'm just sorry that it's in your own family.


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