Wow. It’s a bit heartbreaking to watch
“I hate being black because everyone else feels it’s a curse. Facebook is circulating a video entitled “Dark Skin” which is unapologetic in highlighting the horrific mental complexities centered around the diversity of skin color within the African American community. Overall, young and old women of color were telling their stories of when they realized being dark skinned wasn’t beautiful.
It’s not uncommon to find girls that have had traumatic events take place within their childhood and even adulthood that hinders their ability to develop an appreciation for their skin color because society tells them (us) that they are not beautiful because they are not light. I sure as hell can relate. Up until the 8th grade I thought I was ugly. I literally hit my head up against the mirror every time I saw myself because I was being called “Darkie” by my grandfather who had curly hair, hazel green eyes and was as light as can be.
His sister was a “passer
” it took a while for people to realize she was really black. Her red hair fooled a lot of people and it pierced my soul whenever she called me “tar baby.”
I hate being black every time I like a boy and he tells me he doesn’t date dark skin women but he’s willing to have sex. I hate being black every time I meet a guy and things are going well and he takes me to meet his friends and they say “you can do better she’s too dark, what will your kids look like (true story!). I hate the idea of my complexion being such a hindrance to the prosperity of my life and it is not something I can change.
I hate being black and so that’s why at the age of 30 I say I’m an African. I may not be able to call to Nigeria for Granny or speak the language but I claim Nigeria. My grandmother thinks I’m foolish because I want to know where I come from to better trace my roots. She said “you’re a n____a and that’s all you need to know.” She hates that fact that I mainly date African men because for some odd reason when they see my dark skin, white teeth and black gums they tell me I’m beautiful. I can finally say I believe it and them.
I recently started the Jessica LaShawn Foundation in an effort to unite dark skinned women within the urban communities of Chicago. I’ve gotten a lot of negative feedback saying that I am aiding in the division within our own people but documentaries such as this showcase that we need our own tools for empowerment.”
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