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There is a Mental Illness Among Certain Blacks: Hating The Skin Their In

Okay, at first I didn't want to admit it, I just wanted to sweep it under the rug, but my brothas and sistas, some people in our circle are sick. They suffer from what I would like to call, "I hate my black self." Now they won't come out and say it, because they know they will have to face much ridicule from family and friends, but the evidence is clear. From the way they act around other races of people from the things they buy, someone in their family must have hurt them so bad that they just don't do black any longer.

My first experience observing a black with this mental illness I speak of was back in high school. I met a black girl who had mannerisms that said, "I hate my black self and I am running away from it too." People called her all sorts of names because of her dark skin. I wasn't one of them because I had my own issues of being black, I never saw myself as a lightskin black, but other people did and needless to say I experienced racism within my own race. I didn't know the history behind my skin tone, nor did I think I had some special incentives because of it. But I digress and will have to explore that topic on a later date, but back to her and my point for writing this blog, anyway, she would talk in a way that seemed rehearsed. She used, "like really..Oh my God...and what the f*ck man..." you know statements that we would consider "acting white." Now I liked her, thought she was cool, but I knew my sista had some serious issues. She watched mainly movies with white people in them, exclusively dated white men, went places that were primarily shopped by whites, eventually got pregnant by one and he left her. And she would tell me alot about white people. She definitely had her hands in the cookie jar and I was curious. But what she didn't tell me was how much she hated being black. Instead, it showed up in her actions. I knew there was something wrong and when I met her mother it reinforced the weird feeling I felt the more I hung around her. Her mother wasn't too happy with her black self either. So there it was the root of her issues passed on by her mother. So I say all of that to say this, why do blacks think that by hanging around exclusively white people that some how they will still be able "to keep it real?" It just doesn't happen that way over a long period of time, being around any race other than your own on a regular basis will change you in some ways. I live in a predominately Chinese community and trust me, if I had a choice in the matter, it would have never happened, but the man I am with picked it because it is minutes away from his job. Further, I don't think I'm Chinese, but I will tell you that now that I live here, I have an appreciation for Chinese art that I never had before. I will spend some time looking at the detail in the furniture that the Chinese create and will study their portraits, abstract art, and statues. I think if you are around anything long enough you will be influenced in some way.

So I think some of these blacks who choose to spend the majority of their time with other races; instead of their own are doing it because they don't like what they see within nor do they like what they see around them. If you grew up around a bunch of busybody, loud mouth, impoverished blacks whose idea of a good time was talking about you and your momma, then I guess I wouldn't want to be around those certain type of black folks, but I wouldn't close myself off to an entire race either.

Another issue I have with this mental illness of hating onself in the black community, is with brothas who claim they want to be with a sista then when they get her, they want to talk about her "attitude," like they don't have one, and to make it worse they will treat every other race of women so polite and nice then come home with no smile, barely speaking, and then taking out their "attitude" on her. It's always her fault for why he can't be happy, get ahead, find something, go somewhere, etc. Instead of holding himself accountable. Then when he can't seem to make things right with her, because "she got an attitude," he starts looking out in the street, at work, and on the Internet for his next victim. I say victim, because every sista starts off smiling, boasting, buying, and loving a brotha and then when it's all said and done, she is frowning, lying, witholding, and hating a brotha. I can speak to this issue, because I have experience. You see, a few of the men I dated had this mental illness I speak of. They got with my lightskin self, because as one brotha put it, "I got the best of both worlds." He went on to tell me that he "had a black woman with some white girl ways," now you know I had to leave that sick brotha alone. What college-educated black woman doesn't have some white ways since she has "to perform" in order to get ahead. There will be no shucking and jiving when talking to the man!

This issue of hating one's self because momma left a bad taste in some brotha's mouth so he will only do women who are totally the opposite of momma or hating black men, because she allowed too many to break her heart, or some other crazy reason for losing one's self in a sea of brown, white, red, yellow, or some other color is sick! You know it and I know it. I can respect someone who is open-minded to date all sorts of races just because they are in search of love, that has always been me and anyone who knows me, knows that. But this twisted thinking that if you can get a lightskin or white skin person to fall in love with you so you can have pretty babies is absurb and I can't help but think that some people I know have been guilty of this! This crazy thinking that somehow I can feel better about myself if I talk and walk like other races and spend most of my time hanging around nothing but white people is damn near suicidal! And last but not least, to teach one's child to never trust a brotha, live in a black neighborhood, give a fellow man your business, or sit down and eat at his house is ridiculous! But there are blacks teaching their children these things like the Bible, I can hear them now after Obama was elected and picking members of his cabinet, "See Matthew and Theresa you too can be just like Obama one day just so long as you surround yourself with white people. White people got Oprah far...White people got Clarence Thomas far...White people got your mommy and daddy far, leave those no n*ggas alone, okay?" The children respond, "Yes mommy and daddy we will." Another generation shall grow up fleeing black!

"So what is the bottom line and what does this idea of certain blacks hating themselves have to do with me?" I'm glad you asked, but if you had to then you either aren't black or missed my entire point. It has everything to do with you if not now, some time in the future. Because if you have children and these self-hating blacks are teaching your children in schools and in other programs, something is going to be said at some point that will change the way your children think about themselves. If your misguided cousin, aunt, uncle, sista, or brotha, starts bad mouthing blacks, or dare they say it, "N*ggas," or whatever other name they come up with, their attitude will affect how you choose to deal or not deal with them as well as anyone who is in a relationship with you. "Don't worry about my crazy relative..." will not smooth over hurt feelings, check them before they end up checking whoever you decide to have a serious relationship with. Their attitude may influence those around you to not want to deal with you, because you may be "too black, ghetto, poor..." or what ever other thought they may have about you. So you see, it is a mental illness amongst a few that can infect the whole family and/or whole nation. And as you may know, anyone who hates themselves, can be a problem on the job, in a social group, or somewhere else where harmony is a must. It makes you wonder if self-hating blacks are really the ones behind the negative images or lack of representation we see on television? Just think a powerful black in the boardroom saying, "No, I rather see Lily do that scene, because well you know how Keisha can be..." or what about a potential job offer or an opportunity to join a group this self-hating black, "No, I think Tyrone wouldn't be good for the organization, well you know his dreadlocks are a problem. Let's pass on Katina too, because you know she has all those kids to care for." Sometimes these self-hating blacks only want to be the only black on a job or organization, so they will stop at nothing to keep you from meeting any quotas, we will have to touch on that issue another time!

Written by: Nicholl McGuire

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