Perspectives (From The Mom Of Your Child’s Black Friend) is a safe space I endeavor to create for important conversations. An extension of the dialogue the article prompted between me and many of my non-black friends, most of whom are parents.
My goal is to offer a forum for parents to ask well-intentioned questions about race, culture and experiences that they have not lived but want to ally themselves with. A space to share concrete, tangible ways to engage with the topic of race with our children so that we are comfortable enough to embark on the conversation and resist the instinct to avoid it altogether. The goal is to generate open, honest and vulnerable dialogue that leads to empathy, unity and understanding.
I think about questions like this from my perspective and I believe we all have a role to play. We can't expect those who have not walked in our shoes, to understand our experiences.
The Golden Rule has been my North Star and it remains my guide as I approach discussions about race, culture and parenting. These conversations begin with us, but we must also equip ourselves to have them with our children in an age appropriate way.
Honesty about our country’s racial history, normalization of the conversation around race and a commitment to work together to raise educated children who will have empathy and understanding for those who are different than them, is integral to the pursuit of racial equity and justice.
Let's engage in the how, and not just the why.
This is a painting that decorates my girls' bedroom.
I couldn't love it any more.
This forum is for thoughtful dialogue and education.
Here, you may find my writing, a video or an audio conversation.
The impetus may be a question from one of you, an inquiry from a friend of mine, a current event, a recent personal experience, a book or an event in my own home.
Whatever prompts the conversation and whatever form it comes in, I will use this space to thoughtfully address ways that I believe will help adults find common ground with each other and inform the conversations we have with our children.
Thank you to my friends at @Little_LearnersNYC for creating a space for this important dialogue. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity and so encouraged by the desire by so many to engage.
It's never too early to exposure children to Black stories, Black characters and Black literature. Through exposure, you are inadvertently having a conversation about race.
Black families should not be the only families with books about being Black. White children need to be exposed to this literature too!
I cannot expect someone else to understand my experience if I am not willing to share it. As a community, we are in pain and we are struggling and we need to do what we can to make it safer for our children.
I'm here to bridge a gap.
If raising responsible human beings is our job as parents, then educating them on acceptance, tolerance and understanding is essential.
I will do anything in my power to facilitate that.
If sharing my perspective, experience or resources will help move a challenging conversation in a positive direction, I am eager to extend myself.
I would love to engage with you and your community.
If you have a question you'd like me to feature in this section, feedback you'd like to share or simply want to gain some perspective, please reach out!
Partnership is paramount. We need to be able to ask, share, be vulnerable and learn from one another.
I hope to hear from you!