I know I chose to be part of a transracial family and I would not trade my foursome for the world. I also know that with being part of a transracial family we stand out amongst the crowds. I have more than had my share of comments/looks/questions/disapproval and I have to say it does not really bother me any longer. I am used to it. What does bother me is that people are not understanding that my 3 1/2 year old is extremely smart and completely understands the comments/stares/questions/etc.
Harper is very aware that he was adopted and that we are outwardly different from most families. We “do not care” though and continuously talk about how you do not have to be the same color to be a family and to love one another. Skin color does not dictate family. He gets this and feels proud of this fact. But, yesterday evening at the pool when he and his dad were swimming, two uneducated boys mocked him and made him feel something he had yet to feel regarding his place in his family…hurt. He was asked if he was from foster and told that his family was “weird.” Jason did a great job at explaining to the kids in question that it is not weird to be different from the “norm” and that you should be careful what you say to others as you may hurt their feelings. One boy apologized, the other did not.
I am like no other mother that I want to keep hurt from my children. You can help me with this too though. PLEASE educate your children so that my family does not always have to. We want our kids to know their differences and be proud of them, but not be accosted by them constantly. Many families do not know how to start the conversation, but there are so many resources out there to help get over that first hurdle of uncomfortability. Most white families do not have to deal with issue of race due to white privilege, but believe me, you need to rise above this and educate yourself and your children to make their future a better place than our present. Race does not have to be a taboo topic. It can respectfully be discussed and we can all learn from one another if we just try.
We Stories is a St. Louis based group that is starting to open up a conversation regarding race and discussing race with our children starting at a very early age. Take a look at their website and get involved. This group will support you in learning together and provides many necessary resources that enable you to do so.
There are also many other daily posts to read and searches to be done across the internet on such topics. Why not subscribe to Huff Post Black Voices to learn about issues that are affecting the African-American population. When we try to understand and accept our differences, we can begin to learn from one another and prosper. I hope this happens in my children’s’ future. If I had one wish, that would be it.