Something disturbing my DD said . . . - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#61 of 65 Old 11-18-2006, 01:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
Mizelenius's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: In Lalaland
Posts: 6,938
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flor View Post
Just wondering, on the topic of internalizing racism, how does the OP's daughter identify herself? Does she call herself Asian, or white or has that come up?
SO much to read and ponder here on this thread . . .but just to answer this, we don't really say (to DD) Asian/white/etc. She doesn't refer to herself as anything. She knows her father was born in Korea, and my family from looooong ago is Irish. However, culturally we are a mix. As I mentioned, DH was adopted and so is (culturally) German-American. My parents taught me next-to-nothing about our Irish heritage (I think they are were very disconnected to it), but as I mentioned, my mom embraced the Latino culture . . .for a long time I thought I was Mexican and I'm told I cried when I found out I wasn't. So, people look at DH and assume he was raised in an Asian culture (whereas it was 100% WASP, though he has experienced racism), and look at me and think I was raised 100% mainstream (whereas I was exposed to a lot of different cultures, but esp. Latino).

Our DD's have Scottish first names (DH loves Celtic names), a French last name, look part Asian/part European, and yet speak Spanish (when they feel like it). Hopefully that will confuse people who would otherwise like to put them in a little box of "race."

 2/02, 4/05, 2/07, 11/09, and EDD 12/25/11 wave.gif

 

 

Mizelenius is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#62 of 65 Old 11-18-2006, 03:09 AM
 
tiffani's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,772
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My son used to call caucasian skin "normal skin". He mentioned it casually after our neighbor had been over playing, who is of African descent, and quite dark-skinned. It bothered me so much at the time, but now I can't even remember if he expressed a preference or not...so yes, they do grow out of the tendency to "say anything that pops into their heads as a way to categorize things and people". He also used to refer to some people as "fat", but not in a negative way -- I didn't know where he had even heard that word, but then read it in a curious george book that was given to us, when the "fat man goes fishing". :

My son is a very heart-on-his-sleeve, speak before he thinks kind of kid, but he is in no way racist. He is currently obsessed with "Indians" (let the flames begin!) and no matter how hard I try to substitute the words "Native Americans", "First Nations People", etc, he insists that he's not talking about them, he's talking about "Indians", by which he means the stereotypical depictions he has heard about only when we read Peter Pan (which we discussed at length) and on a Tom and Jerry cartoon on a ferry. : I agree that these things don't need to be censored, but used as a jumping off point for discussion. The book "The Little House on the Prairie" has been a great conversation starter for us. It's uncomfortable to talk with your kids about the atrocities that have been carried out (and we haven't gotten into them in depth, as they are still so young) but it's important, and I want them to question "historical" accounts and take 'perspective' into consideration.

Yes, we've discussed the difference between people from India and Native Americans, and have talked about how they came to be called "Indians", where the first people in North America came from before they were any people here at all, and the history of how their tribes and cultures were virtually wiped out by the settlers, but he still holds on to a very romanticized version of "Indians", and you know what? that's ok -- he's 5, and in love with what he perceives the culture was like. And actually, while he obviously doesn't have an in-depth understanding of the culture, it seems healthy to me for him to want to be like them. We're all learning more and more about Native culture and history, and I don't think that shaming him about his current mis-information helps, so we're just finding resources to learn from, and enjoying our journey.

If anyone can recommend any really good books aimed at the 5 - 10 yo crowd about this subject, I would love to share them with him. So far, we've read mostly historical and informational books, but would love some more cultural stories.

So I guess my point is, kids are young, and learning, and I totally agree with dharmamama and Incamama (among others) in that you can't hold them accountable for their thoughts and feelings. If you shame them, make them feel at all like it "isn't ok" or "we don't say that in our family" or whatever, then you run the risk of closing off communication, and making them feel badly about themselves.

As for the kids who might suffer for their ignorance, there isn't really anything you can do to prevent a 4 year old from making ignorant comments -- they are ignorant!! Yes, yes, intelligent and wise, but totally ignorant of the most sensitive way to address their fears/concerns/curiosity/etc about those who are different from them. They need thoughtful adults around in close contact to help guide them along. I also agree that being around a huge variety of people is really important, but they still make insensitive comments from time to time. Childhood is for learning the ways of the world, they aren't required to already know all this. Heck, we're all still learning. except for those of you who already have it all figured out

We're Tiffani , Mark , Lucy (9/99) , Dexter (8/01) ,and Zachary Marvin (3/07) and Naomi Rose (6/09), home 11/10, by way of Ugandan adoption.

tiffani is offline  
#63 of 65 Old 11-18-2006, 10:30 AM
 
Tinas3muskateers's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Erie Pa
Posts: 958
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizelenius View Post
I have forgotten to thank everyone for your replies. . .thank you! You have brought many points to light; even if I don't agree with all of them, I appreciate things that make me think.

So, I talked to DD again . . .I don't want to nag her about this incident but wanted more info. I asked her if X were lighter, would she like him? She said, "Of course not, he's a boy." I helped her come up with a list again of why she does/does not like people-- she did not mention appearance at all (or gender). I pointed this out to her . . .

I gave her this scenario: What if I got her a great present, but it had been wrapped in paper she didn't like. Would she open it? She said, "Of course." I told her people are like presents . . .if you only look at the paper (whether someone is short/tall, boy/girl, light/dark) you will miss the present on the inside. I told her things about this boy that I know she has in common with him. She said, "OK, let's invite him over so that I can get to know him."

So, I am not going to bring this up to her again (this particular incident) but it is certainly something I will continue to be on alert for.



YAY wtg mom great parenting!
Tinas3muskateers is offline  
#64 of 65 Old 11-18-2006, 10:37 AM
 
Tinas3muskateers's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Erie Pa
Posts: 958
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My son who is 7 has many colors around him at school and at home. He has cousin who are bi-racial (african american and white) he himself is bi-racial (Hispanic and Italian) He goes to a very diverse school and he notices color.
"Michael is a dark brown" "I am tan" A boy at school called him a white boy and he argued with him telling him that there was nothing white about him that he was "tan" Caden looks at color has an apperance thing not a racial thing. My daughter has been told "Why you can really dance for a white girl (she is 15)" and she smiles and says what makes you think I am white? My kids do not look hispanic at all so they get the white comment often.

A cute story, not about my kids but my little sister. She is now 21 but when she was about 3 or 4 she lived next door to this little African American girl. They were sitting on the steps to the girls house and the conversation went like this:

Sister: I am black and you are white did you know that?
Girl: No, I am black you are white
Sister: What! No I am, I am black you are white
Girl: (looking at her strangly) See look at my skin look at yours I am black
(Mind you my sister is as white as driven snow and this young lady was dark skinned, it made it all the more funny)

and it went on and on untill my sister gave up and realized the girl was telling her the truth.......

Kids sometimes hear things and truely have no clue what they are repeating. In your case however (OP) I think you handled it wonderfully and she couldnt askf or a better mama.
Tinas3muskateers is offline  
#65 of 65 Old 11-18-2006, 02:42 PM
 
Flor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: California
Posts: 5,119
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizelenius View Post
SO much to read and ponder here on this thread . . .but just to answer this, we don't really say (to DD) Asian/white/etc. She doesn't refer to herself as anything. She knows her father was born in Korea, and my family from looooong ago is Irish. However, culturally we are a mix. As I mentioned, DH was adopted and so is (culturally) German-American. My parents taught me next-to-nothing about our Irish heritage (I think they are were very disconnected to it), but as I mentioned, my mom embraced the Latino culture . . .for a long time I thought I was Mexican and I'm told I cried when I found out I wasn't. So, people look at DH and assume he was raised in an Asian culture (whereas it was 100% WASP, though he has experienced racism), and look at me and think I was raised 100% mainstream (whereas I was exposed to a lot of different cultures, but esp. Latino).

Our DD's have Scottish first names (DH loves Celtic names), a French last name, look part Asian/part European, and yet speak Spanish (when they feel like it). Hopefully that will confuse people who would otherwise like to put them in a little box of "race."
Yeah, there will be those who want to catagorize her, and she might stuggle to catogorize herself ( I say this as a red-headed half Mexican almost bilingual. . .: ). I remember this one time in college, the Mecha (Mexican American student group) was teaming up with the Women of Color Resource Group to do some event and they were all giving me the evil eye, or the suspicious eye, to be Mexican but not quite the right color for the Women of Color Resource Center. . . at least I got to take an entire class in college called Mixed Race Descent in the Americas. . .taken mostly by mixed kids like me.
Flor is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off