A feeling of worry or fear of raising black children today, especially a male child. That your child will be viewed as a stereotype and racially profiled. Does not matter the schools you put them in, the neighborhood you move them to or the names you give them.
I used to be the person to get sad when I saw a person of color die at the hands of racism in the media. If I can be honest, I could only read halfway through the story because my heart broke reading word after word. Starting with Rodney King, Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell, Trayvon Martin and many more. It has become to often and NOTHING is changing. Now that I am raising three black young boys to grow up to be black men, I am petrified of them wearing a hoodie or just living while black. Do white moms go through this? While I am not blaming white mothers, I just wish I had the privilege to raise my children FREELY. Let them live life without fearing a cop, being watched around a store or a white woman “fearing” for her life. I know I suffer from Black Mom Anxiety daily and I have been trying to work through it. I do not let my boys spend the night out with their “friends”, the moment anyone speaks to my children outside I’m on the defensive immediately and I even named them “safe” names. Truthfully, I am hesitant them to date (I have at least 6 more years of NO GIRLFRIENDS age) a girl of another race because of how their dad may view my son.
Recently I responded to a Facebook post by Shawn Williams regarding black boys losing their childhood innocence because of how black boys are viewed in America. Remarkably interesting post, I named as a MUST READ. We can no longer turn the channel or stroll pass the black boys face on a post, because it is happening, IT IS REAL. As a culture we need to keep fighting even when the media attention dies down because before you know it will happen AGAIN. Accept it is happening to our men, children and now US.
Please see below my letter to Shawn Williams and all they other black and brown little boys I know.