Mom said look black is ugly

Giselle Henry
Torrance, CA

The first person who taught me that looking more like my African ancestors than my non-African ancestors made me ugly was my mother. She didn’t say it directly, but she said by telling me to pinch my nose so it wouldn’t be so wide. She said it by saying how “pretty” my sister was because she had such “fine” features. Just recently I visited her and was telling her about an allergic reaction I had from a medication that made my lips swell up. She said, “That’s terrible, your lips are already big enough”. I have come to feel that I am beautiful, I am proud of my wide nose, my full lips because they are what makes me beautiful and what connect me to my African origins. The other side of my card says, “I say look black is beautiful”.

 

Tweets by Michele Norris