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RE: Q&A-Topic: Advice to 'White' Mothers of Mixed-Race Children

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  • tlbaker1
    Hello All, Skimming through email and reading from top to bottom, this is a great post as it states everything that I have ever written or thought about on
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 1, 2006

      Hello All,


      Skimming through email and reading from top to bottom,
      this is a great post as it states everything that
      I have ever written or thought about on this topic.

      In NYC, you see a lot of interracial families in Harlem and
      Brooklyn and are probably doing just fine for the most part.

      Brooklyn, has a tremendous diverse population, the biracial
      child will grow up not with just other biracial children
      but children from other races / cultures.




      From: Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com
      On Behalf Of
      Sent: Monday, October 23, 2006 9:00 PM
      To: Generation-Mixed@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [Generation-Mixed] Q&A-Topic: Advice to 'White' Mothers of Mixed-Race Children


      The Q&A topic listed below concerns advice
      to 'White' mothers of Mixed-Race Children.







      What advice would you give to the
      'White' mother of a biracial child?


      After my ('White') stepmother read my
      book ... one of the things she said was
      that she never thought of me as "black",
      she just thought of me as Rebecca.

      While this is a wonderful and important
      concept, I found it quite dangerous.

      Growing up, I was in fact a "black" child
      and I had to navigate being a "black"
      child in a racially-stratified world.

      For any of my caregivers to ignore this basic
      truth was, in my opinion, to ignore the reality
      of my daily existence and thus be unable to help
      me figure out how to move skillfully through it.

      It is important for 'White' parents of
      children-of- color to pay attention
      to how [the issue of ] race
      functions in your child's life.

      It is important for you to "come to your child's
      reality" with at least some understanding
      of the issues they may be facing.

      This doesn't mean 'assuming' that they are
      being marginalized or discriminated against;
      it does mean being vigilant about keeping
      communication open when it comes to
      issues of "race", class and 'color', topics
      which are often masked in discussions about
      "beauty, intelligence, socio-economic status,
      sexuality, and violence", among others.

      Often our kids are not able to identify and
      articulate how they feel in a given environment,
      and so we must know what to look for,
      and feel confident acting on what we see.

      I think that 'White' parents should make
      every effort to live in "diverse communities" .

      You often cannot imagine the strain of being
      'one of the few' or 'the only one' in a community.

      You may feel comfortable walking down the
      street where you live, or visiting the school you
      want your child to attend, but does your child?

      Because your family is "non-traditional"
      (whatever that means), reach out for "the
      unspoken support" of [such] a community ....

      This can free your children up to explore their
      individual interests more fully, instead of
      having to spend time figuring out what it
      means to be "different" from 'the status quo'.

      Finally, have a clear philosophy about "race",
      and communicate this to your children so
      they can contextualize themselves and
      your family within a bigger world-view.

      So many parents I talk to think that 'not' talking
      about race is the way to a race-neutral world,
      but kids are getting a zillion subliminal
      messages about race every day.

      At least one of them should be yours.

      Feburary 23, 2005

      SOURCE: http://www.rebeccaw alker.com/ ask-answer- advice-biracial- child.htm 

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