We gave our Facebook fans an opportunity to share their experiences with shadeism. We selected two articles to post on our blog page. Our second article, written by Tiffani Davis, illustrates a biracial family’s experience with shadeism. It’s a great read and please leave a reply with your thoughts about her experiences.
My Experience With Shadeism
When I first heard of shadeism, I honestly had never heard of the term before. But after investigating it, I can say that shadeism is alive and well! In some cases, even more so then racism. I personally have had many experiences where my skin tone stood out in some way; negative and positive.
We are a biracial family. My husband being Hispanic and White, and I myself being Black, West Indian decent. We have four beautiful children. Color, tone, race…Is never emphasized in our home, but we sure do experience it a lot in the outside world!
When I had my first born, she was fairly lighter then me, and when out in public many people would ask me who’s child she was or if I was babysitting! It was insulting and scary to say the least. Although my daughter favors her father, she does have many of my facial features. The fact that people could not see past the tone of our skin threw me back. I mean what year was this?? Are people still stuck on color??
When my husband and I got together at the age of 15, his family (Hispanic side) was very unhappy with whom he brought home (me). This was the first time I experienced racism. It confused the hell out me! Here we were young, in love and color blind, had no idea that this was going to be a problem. My confusion was to the fact that I was a “minority” and so was his family…What was the problem? I was not light enough, I was not what they wanted for him. I had no idea the color of my skin could cause such disrespect.
Today we still get second looks when we are all out together. We laugh, we smile and wave. We are not bothered anymore by the ignorance of others.
We teach our children to see past color, to embrace the beauty and difference of us all. When people ask our children what race they are they say “human”!
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