I am a 32-year-old mother of three (11,7,2). My 11-year-old son is from my previous relationship. I am white; his father is black. His father is mostly out of the picture. With everything going on, I want to have the right conversations with him. We’ve touched on what he sees in the news (we live near DC), but it is literally the tip of the iceberg, and I know this. My question is, as a white mother raising a mixed son in an all-white family, where do I begin?
I applaud you for this question…
Yuo tell them the truth
Im a filipina my husband is white we raise our children to Respect
Just keep it truthful and as basic as u can. Be direct. Unfortunately he doesnt have the luxury to be “babied” on the subject…u know ur child best, u know how much they can handle and how to talk to him best. Just follow ur gut, and good luck! U should be proud of urself for seeking advice on such a hard subject!
You teach him love, kindness, and respect. Be honest with him. Teach him to stand up against racism. Teach him his culture, his race, his background.
I was completely honest with my 8 year old mixed daughter
Because one of her classmates called her the n-word
Be completely honest. It’s REALLY important to teach the correct way to act when encountering an officer because unfortunately it will much different for him than the rest of your children.
You teach him to be kind and respectful to others but to expect the same in return from them.
Being mixed it is hard to find a place in all of this my advice to you as a mother of a mixed child let him tell you how he feels about all of this keep him informed he has to find his own identity and let him know it’s ok to be both white and black because that is what he is he can feel the pain of the black community and miss the racism because he never experienced it
I would find a good documentary for him to watch with you
We were upfront and honest with our trans biracial teenager. We frequently talk about what things he’s run across on social media, etc.
We also had the cop talk. We had him practice putting his hands up and announce every move he made. Be respectful, say yes Sir and no Sir (even though in this house we’re punk rocking anarchists), do whatever the cop says, don’t speak or sign anything without a parent. We ended it with saying “your only objective is to come home safe because we love you and need you. You matter.”
The first thing is to learn as much factual info as you can. Don’t want to spread false info. Is your child’s family on his fathers side in his life? If so I’d suggest asking them to have the conversation. I applaud you for this but noone can explain better than people who live through it. I’m sure there will be plenty of questions for you too and my advice is if you don’t have an absolutely factual answer let him know that and that you will find out.
Find books that both you can read and he can. Be open and honest. We have three mixed little ones. Our oldest understands what is going in a way that makes sense to her (9). The younger two have no idea yet. Dont be afraid to reach out to those of color in your friend groups. But whatever you do DO NOT LIE OR SUGAR COAT. As a black male he will endure situations we as white females will never understand. Prepare him the best you can no matter how uncomfortable it could make you. And above all else just take extra time and love him. Talk to him about what he thinks is going on. How he thinks the world could be better. Good luck momma
Are you teaching him skin color doesn’t matter nor where you come from? Are you teaching him even people in uniform can make bad choices but that was their choice not everyone wearing that uniform? Are you teaching him the difference between a peaceful protest and rioting? Then it covers a lot he might be seeing on tv that the media is putting a bad spin on. Please pardon my soapbox and keep up the awesome job of caring about your son enough th o explain it.
I am learning the same thing… I have an 11,7,3 girls and a son on the way… (my husband is black I am Polynesian) and my 7 yo apparently didn’t “know she was black” so I ultimately feel like I failed her… her dad and I just looked at each other like how did we let this happen??? So now it is time for us to fully educate our children and do it truthfully as well
See if there is someone local that can be a kind of mentor to him as well! I was reading something the other day about a family who found high school/college age African American girls to be mentors to their young African American children they had adopted. Sounded like such a fantastic idea to me! Other than that be honest and open!
I’d read a few books on racism and its affects on the black community and all minorities really. That way you can come to the conversation with a hint of understanding, because it is s pain and sadness unlike anything you have ever experienced.
My son is mixed. My daughters are white…
I teach ALL my kids to respect others and themselves. Including authority. To Listen before you speak. To be accountable for your actions… They effect others not just yourself. To be responsible. Step up before you step away.
And never start a fight but don’t be scared to finish one.
Children do not see hate or color.
Yestgeres injustice in tjis world… But if the whole incident was reversed… Black cop on white man… We wouldn’t even be having this discussion.
You can be honest with him, but to the world he’s a black boy which is something you have no experience about. Imo have your talk with him, but it’s also important he talks to someone he can/will relate to. Some things you just won’t be able to explain or understand bcus your white, but wanting to educate your son on how he will be viewed in this country is a must.