Girl, you are not black enough.

Flora Griffith,
Omaha, NE.

I was eight years old when I first began to feel like an outsider. My school was very segregated, white people hung out with white people and black people hung out with black people, ect. I felt alone, I was never truly accepted into the black, white, or latino communities. The phrases “You’re not ____ enough,” and “No, girl you aren’t ____ you’re ____,” began to ring in my ears. It was very difficult for me to make friends because of the borders between people. Today, I am the only person of color in my friend group, and one of the few people of color in my grade. Often after people hear my ethnicity say something along the lines of: “Really, you don’t act —-,” or “Well, you’re not really —-“. Quite frankly it’s infuriating. I also act and often when I talk to my friends about roles I want to audition for, if the character is a person of color they’ll naively say something close to “Well you don’t really present enough as —-.” I’m still grappling with my identity, but I’ve been getting better at calmly correcting the inappropriate remarks made by people who don’t understand. Although I’m young, I’ve come to learn that you are the only person who can define your identity and no other person should every stop you from being who you are.

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