Growing up Black in a White Community

Growing up Black in a White community

Here is Safia’s Story

“I remember the first time I relaxed my hair I was sat looking at myself in the mirror thinking who am I not knowing any of my history all I knew is that I wanted straight flowy hair . So I’ll take you back to High school I was on one the only few black kids in my school and at that age it’s all about fitting in . So i started looking at the girls around me blonde blue eyed cos they are what I saw in the magazines so I would copy them . I would copy how they spoke I would want smaller lips, straight hair , lighter skin , light eyes I remember wanting contact lenses but only now do I realise my whole high school experience wasn’t about fitting in it was about wanting to be white it was about making myself more palette able to what was around me. I suppressed all that I am in order to be seen and heard Now In history lessons we were taught that we were slaves nothing more and on the adverts as a kid I would always see poor African kids, kids that looked like me so subconsciously I saw myself as nothing . There  is a county called Niger and when it was said everyone in the class would stare at me or even when the world even black was used I would be looked at . I got to an age where I wanted boys to fancy me but they never did but purely because I was black there’s a saying now which is your not ugly your just black in a white school . I could go on but instead I want you to know that black is powerful and beautiful and the power lies in educating yourself , learning your history  the proper history not the western version they teach you in school or what the media perpetuates . Read , watch films , google black political leaders learn about where are hairstyles come from take back what is yours , and then you will see why they try to tell us we are nothing because we hold so much power and still in the face of oppression we shine and always rise!”


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