How do I deal with certain things as a Self-Declared Woman oF Rich Ethnical and Cultural Background (WRECB)

Disclaimer: my ideas and opinions are subjected to change as I go through this beautiful thing we call life. You can help me shape my ideas by commenting and sharing your own perspective, as long as it is done in a respectful manner. I am looking forward to hearing from you!

IMG_0211These past few days I have had interesting interactions with friends about gender and race discrimination, and I came into a few conclusions of my own.

Let me first tell you a little about me: I believe race and gender are of social construct. I was socialized as a typical “white girl”. My mother’s family is French of Italian descent, and I grew up among them; therefore, for the first part of my life: I was oblivious of many things related to race/ethnicity. Of course, I saw there were different types of people, from different continents, but I didn’t think that their differences transcended their physical appearances: some had straight hair, other curly, black skin, or blue eyes, etc… Most importantly, I was not aware of the concept that certain minorities could be discriminated against, and definitely didn’t recognize it could somehow affect (or rather was affecting) my life.

Things started to unravel later when my consciousness and common sense clashed in a sort of disbelief, then climaxed in high school where I finally met a bunch of people from different places, and who had lots of (preconceived) ideas, about lots of things, not unlike the people I had grown up with, amusingly… This lead me, over the years, not only to educated myself about these issues that pertained to my own identity and others, but also listen attentively and reflect on my own experiences as a Woman of a Rich Ethnical and Cultural Background (WRECB).

This social experiment led me to a few conclusions of my own:

Discriminations do exist, that is why it is important to be aware of them; but if you keep looking at something you will always find it: you can read into as such even, when there is nothing.

For instance, if you’re on the road and you see a hole on the ground, upon acknowledging it, you have a few choices:

  • You could stop and complain how people are negligent, and how they don’t care about other’s safety, and on and on, and on… making a lot of noise, and not really doing much about it.
  • You could maneuver around it, minding your own business
  • You could contact the authorities, so the problem is addressed, and someone will eventually fix it
  • Or even better, get some cement and fill the opening, preventing accidents from happening.

You might also not know what a hole is, either because you have not been exposed or nobody knew about it, or everybody else had special shoes that protected them from falling. It might take a few fall and hurt before realizing what it is and now be aware.

These examples are pretty straight forward, and if you didn’t get it, I am just encouraging you raise awareness and pro-activity, if anything.

I feel blessed I was able to learn (the hard way), and I ended up realizing that most of these roads I was (am) strolling had already been paved before me. In the process of discovering, I blamed others and denounced their lack of sympathy and/or compassion, I avoided tackling issues enabling, as a result, certain behaviors around me, I have tried to get helped from others, and I have also been proactive. From experience, the last two have been the most effective.

Bottom line, it is human to feel negatively drained by injustices. But the real question is: what are you going to do about it? How do you face challenges?

Disclaimer: my ideas and opinions are subjected to change as I go through this beautiful thing we call life. You can help me shape my ideas by commenting and sharing your own perspective, as long as it is done in a respectful manner. I am looking forward to hearing from you!

©️ Daphne Mia Essiet, 2014

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4 thoughts on “How do I deal with certain things as a Self-Declared Woman oF Rich Ethnical and Cultural Background (WRECB)

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