Saturday, May 16, 2015

“Just Hair” — NOT!

Breukelen Bleu recently held an extremely important (and uncomfortable/painful for many) conversation during THIS Facebook post. I would strongly urge you to read through the entire discussion.

Like many other readers, I also felt a combination of mixed emotions while browsing through the Chocolate Hair Vanilla Care (CHVC) site:
  • sadness at how BW have failed to go THAT hard in celebrating their Black daughters’ natural hair texture;
  • admiration at how this Becky has created an income stream from showcasing and celebrating her adopted Black daughter’s natural hair;
  • pleasure at seeing the dozens of photographs of various hairstyles;
  • curiosity about learning how to do the dozens of natural hairstyles featured in the photos;
  • taken aback at the “hateration” comments from readers who (for understandable emotional reasons) completely missed the point of Breukelen Bleu’s Facebook post and comments.
When invited and challenged to provide some links to websites where BW have taken the showcasing of their daughters’ [so-called] 4-c texture hair to the SAME level as this WW, these dissenters couldn’t provide a single link thus far (at the time of publishing this post).

Side note—I can’t stand a [gay BM stylist-invented] hair classification system that puts the most authentically Black hair texture last with bone straight White/Asian-type hair placed at number one. I find it significant that so many BW have voluntarily adopted a hair classification numerical system that puts their hair last without any questions, concerns, or angst. Nobody stopped us from reversing those numbers and putting our hair FIRST among human equals.

Just like everybody else, I see the droves of Natural Hair Jihadi-BW drooling over (and trying to find the latest hair grease in hopes of acquiring) biracial-texture, loose curls that are NOT their natural hair texture.

I got a lump in my throat when I read this comment:
Yes, due to lack of knowledge about natural hair care and styles, there have been (and still are) legions of BW slapping unflattering, substandard hairdos on their daughters’ heads that they would never wear themselves. The contrast between that widespread pathetic state of affairs versus the CHVC Becky modeling the same hairdos she puts on her adopted Black daughter’s head is breathtaking.
Breukelen Bleu asked an important question during THIS Facebook conversation.

“. . . The question that I have for everyone - those who agree with my stance on this topic and those who dont...

WHY is that it takes BECKYS presence on the scene, before black women are willing to face some of OUR shit - like our "hair" shit? "Its Just Hair" until Lily White Jessica shows up, and then all of a sudden its of major importance? I been in this natural hair game for a long time - over two decades - and I have had MANY a heated discussion with black woman about why our hair is so important and why what we do with it DOES matter. I've even gotten kicked off of natural hair sites for trying to talk about the natural hair communities obsession with curl pattern and length. I sat and watch black women GO IN on Blue Ivy and her mother, Gabby Douglas, Willow Smith and a number of other little black girls who hair didnt meet our respectability protocols. Yet the ONLY time there seems to be all of this angst in favor of our hair being something 'special', is when a white woman shows up on the scene.
[ ] . . . Ive done many posts on black womens relationship with our hair. Its interesting tho that the ones that always seem to get so heated, are the ones where Becky is some how present.

I wonder why that is?

One reader gave an answer (emphasis in bold):

o    Shakti Atn Ra Eugenia you're hilarious! That pic is everything. Breukelen I'm gonna hazard a response to your question based on my non existent psychology background. wink emoticon BW who found your original post problematic and who get up in arms anytime Becky makes an appearance in whatever the topic is, are being triggered. If you're an emotionally, psychologically, spiritually & mentally healthy BW, Becky's presence, her words, her whatever, shouldn't make you bat an eyelash. It should be a non factor. Who the fuck on planet earth is greater than ME? Not a goddamned body, so I govern myself accordingly. Many BW talk that talk but the truth is revealed just under the surface. Hurt feelings. Low self esteem. Obsessive external focus on what everybody else is doing, saying, etc.

Folks missing the message cause they got triggered by Becky's presence. Like she's the point. She's not. If anything, that site is a vehicle to a bigger point, but not the main point itself. Folks missed that because they're obsessed by her. That obsession is so pathological that they don't even see how deeply enamored they are by her & as a result project those feelings onto others claiming that those others are the one with the obsession. Psychology 101.

Anyhoo, it's obvious that many BW need serious help in many basic areas of the Game of Life. And I ain't mad about that cause that's intentional. And many of us aren't even aware of the war games to even begin to have basic defense against them. Like you said, those who are ready, will progress and will finally fucking WIN. Those who aren't ready? Oh well. Too slow, you blow.

6 · 9 hrs · Edited

I agree with the reader’s assessment that Becky’s presence or involvement is “triggering” for many BW. I also think there are some other aspects to this that haven’t been mentioned yet.
Nowadays, Becky is so very “triggering” for so many BW because African-Americans (and by extension, African-American BW) are literally at the end of the road. Nowadays, “the funk is uncut” for AABW. All the illusions previous generations of AA women used to comfort themselves and cushion the emotional blows received from a hostile world have been stripped from us.

The illusion that “we’re all in it together with BM” has been shattered by African-American (AA) BM’s past three decades of publicly denigrating BW.
The illusion that AABM had any affection or appreciation for BW has been shattered by the droves of BM who avidly sought access to White vaginas as soon as they were free enough to do so without being immediately lynched.

AABW’s ability to regroup from the outer world into the emotional comfort zone and safety net of marriage and wholesome family life has been destroyed by 40+ years of mass AA out-of-wedlock childbearing (= 40+ years of BM’s refusal to marry the BW they have sex with and impregnate).
In short, ALL the emotional sanctuaries and safe places that previous generations of AABW could use to rest weary and wounded spirits have been destroyed.

Anybody’s who been backed into an emotional corner by snarling wolves (the non-stop War On BW) is going to feel “triggered.” And will lash out in an attempt to protect themselves (and save face). And this is where the negative impact of BM comes into play.
The heavy, prolonged and ongoing damage that BM have done to BW’s psyches can’t be left out of these sorts of conversations. It’s like Chris Rock doing a mockumentary about BW’s hair issues while pretending not to know that BW seek so-called “good hair” in order to appeal to negro males like himself who place a premium on Whiter-looking women with so-called “good hair.”

The only validation of beauty that really counts for straight women and girls is that which they get from straight men and boys. Becky floats through life with self-confidence in her type of beauty because Becky’s beauty is validated by Brad (WM) AND by the various men of color that Brad has conquered, especially by conquered BM across the planet such as Tyrone, Delroy and Nnamdi.
AABW are the only women who are expected to somehow develop self-confidence and self-esteem in the total absence of their type of beauty being validated by the males of their group.

The bottom line is that any AABW who restricts herself to Black social environments will find herself backed into an emotional corner. Because such BW are seeking respect, appreciation and celebration from males (Black males) who are incapable of appreciating ANY BW who looks like a typical BW.*
[*Which touches on another important point Breukelen Bleu raised during another Facebook conversation. The vast majority of the “Black women” that have been celebrated among African-Americans over the decades don’t have the authentically Black phenotype. Including BW With 2 Black Parents Who Look Mixed like blue-eyed, light-haired Vanessa Williams. These “Black” women are considered beautiful by BM because they look closer to WW’s phenotype.]

The irony is that nowadays, BW’s authentic type of beauty (dark-skinned, 4-c hair, mainstream African type of nose and lips) is more likely to be appreciated by WM than by BM. Modern day AABW have to socialize and mingle with those men who appreciate our type of beauty. Odds are this is more likely to happen with WM than with BM (or other men of color who are often as color-struck as BM). We also need to do a better job of modeling self-love with our daughters and the other Black girls in our orbit.
I understand the BW who are “triggered” by Becky’s presence or involvement. Years ago, before I did the introspection and internal work taught by BWE, I was one of those BW. But being triggered and lashing out in pain is a widespread self-defeating cycle that AAs of both genders need to move past. I talked about this self-defeating behavior pattern in comments to a January 2013 post about BW's Mother-Daughter issues at Halima’s blog:

Blogger Khadija said...

Thanks for this post. Like all poisonous things that thrive in the darkness, this is one issue that needs to be exposed to the cleansing and disinfecting sunlight.

Here's my 2 cents (or pence--LOL!) from across the pond in the US:

I see a multitude of overlapping dysfunctions going on in the African-American collective when it comes to mother-daughter relationships. All of which operate to the daughters' detriment:

(1) Many AA mothers are giving their daughters advice that's totally obsolete. Strategies and world views that worked well enough many decades ago (before the AA collective became entrenched in underclass behaviors such as oow, mass paternal abandonment, etc.) are self-sabotaging poison in the modern environment.

These mothers are so BM-identified (and BM-son-identified in particular) that they never pay attention to how various trends affect their daughters. Everything these type of women say and do is ALL about lifting up BM in general and their BM sons in particular. When their daughters' needs are neglected and sacrificed along the way, it's "too bad, so sad."

(2) Many AA mothers are totally unfit to give anybody advice. These women were/are used and exploited themselves, and still haven't caught a clue. So they give their daughters the type of advice ("All men cheat,""Let a man be a man,""What did you do to provoke him to hit you?", etc.) that ruins their daughters' lives in the same way their lives are damaged.

(3) Many AA mothers are straight-up envious of their daughters. And have the attitude of "I had it bad, and you should too." Quiet as it's kept, many AA mothers have attitudes that are similar to those of Arab mothers who support the so-called "honor" murders of their own daughters.

Back in the day when I used to participate in (dead BC) community type outreach activities, I would watch many AA mothers sabotage their daughters' ability to participate in anything that might lift their girls out of poverty and into abundant life. They would repeatedly "forget" to sign permission slips for their daughters to attend life-enhancing outings, tutoring, etc. Meanwhile, they somehow "remembered" to sign permission slips for their precious sons to participate in programs.

These mothers were transparent in their envy and rage at the idea that their daughters might have a chance to enjoy a better quality of life.

(4) Then you have the internalized colorism issues. Often a darker-skinned dysfunctional AA mother "hates on" her daughter if the daughter is lighter. Or the lighter-skinned dysfunctional AA mother "makes differences" between her daughters based on complexion (treating the lighter girls better).

In summary, there's a LOT of heavy-duty sickness going on between many (if not most) AA mothers treat and raise and daughters. The vast majority of AA mothers are setting their daughters up for suffering. Whether it's intentional on these mothers' parts or not, that's the bottom line effect of what they're doing.

At this point, self-actualizing AA women and teenage girls need to understand that their own mothers just might be one of their greatest enemies. It's a hurtful and disgusting thought; but folks need to face reality and act accordingly if they want to succeed in having a good life. *sigh*
3:12 p.m.

 During that conversation, other readers and I responded to comments from a “triggered”  reader:

Blogger Khadija said...

Part 1

You said: "'Where are the fathers in this?.'

I think that is a question that NEEDS to be asked. Since you decided to only focus on the mothers, and used an example of what mothers who belong to a non-Black group of women are doing as some kind of example that should be imitated, I think this is a perfect time to bring up an issue that is simply not focused on by many in the BWE community unfortunately."

I'm sure Halima has her (more than eloquent) thoughts about all of this. Again, here are my 2 cents as a retired BWE blogger:

Generally speaking, I don't think that fathers can fully compensate for the lack of competent motherly guidance for their daughters. Similar to the way a woman can't really socialize boys into manhood the way an emotionally healthy man (preferably their biological fathers) can do so.

Yes, there are general "raising you to be a good and effective person" things that parents of both genders can do with children of either gender. And yes, there are certain male-psychology-based dating/vetting warning signs that a sincere and emotionally healthy father can warn his daughters about. However, it's just not the same as a girl being trained in effective womanly skills and strategies by her mother.

On top of the above, there are additional and unusual complications involved in raising Black girls to successfully navigate the modern-day world around them.

Many nonblacks (including nonblack fathers and/or stepfathers of Black girls) are either: (1) unaware of or (2) don't understand the bizarre dynamics of the various DBRBM-created minefields Black girls have to navigate. Because many of these nonblack men come from collectives that actually protect and lift up the girls/women in their group. So it's hard for these nonblack fathers and stepfathers to advise their Black daughters about the specific, bizarre, DBRBM-created, spirit-crushing situations that these men never anticipated.

Because they're unfamiliar with the bizarre dynamics of many Western Black cultures---cultures in which BW and Black children are routinely sacrificed for the whims of BM. Which is upside-down and backwards from the way most nonblack cultures operate. Normal cultures expect and demand that the men protect the women and children.
12:41 a.m.
Blogger Khadija said...
Part 2 of my reply to [Other Commenter]

In terms of Black fathers guiding their Black daughters through the minefields created by DBRBM's hatred of BW, that issue ties into another part of your comment when you said:

"First, your Jewish mother example. Jewish mothers DO NOT have to deal with the hatred of Jewish men. That right there is the crux of this problem of why BWE was even needed in the first place. Too many Black males simply HATE Black women & girls, and that has wreaked all kinds of havoc on the pysche of generation after generation of Black woman & girl. We can talk about what Black women "need" to do until we are blue in the face, but until the issue of Black male hatred of Black women & girls is fully & properly addressed, we will continue to see a myriad of problems cropping up for Black women & girls, such as the disfunctional relationship some Black mothers & daughters have with each other that you bought up."

Yes, it's true that women from most other racial/ethnic groups don't have to deal with hatred from the males of their groups.

But here's my concern when people speak of "addressing" BM's lethal hatred of BW: I don't see it ever being effectively addressed. And waiting around for it to be addressed seems counterproductive to me. There's not going to be any REAL justice or accountability imposed on BM for their genocidal behavior towards BW and Black girls.

There won't be any equivalent to the Nuremberg trials for the BM (c)rappers and others who created "Radio Rwanda" music and videos which play a large in creating the mass devaluing of Black female lives.

There won't be any tribunals in which Rev. Hot Comb and others are required to account for their "activism malpractice" regarding the physical survival of BW and girls.

Judging from BW's online discussions about Chris Brown, Ar-ruh Kelly, and other BM savage brutes, Notorious BM Celebrities Who Physically Attack and/or Molest BW & Black Girls won't even suffer real economic loss because of their genocidal anti-BW hatred.

Most BM haven't and WON'T ever "address" BM's genocidal hatred of BW and Black girls. I can think of several reasons for this (self-interest, cowardice, etc.). At this late date, the reasons don't really matter to me. Waiting for BM to address any of this is akin to waiting for BM to protect and provide for Black children: Never gonna happen in any significant numbers. And a lot of Black female lives will be lost or diminished while waiting around for something that won't happen.

Ditto for waiting for the masses of BM-identified BW to "address" any of this. A lot of BW's and girls' lives will be lost and diminished while debating with these BM-identified Black female collaborators.

To my way of thinking, the best thing is to advise and assist as many BW and girls as possible to GET AWAY from anybody and everybody (including their mothers if the "shoe fits") who devalues them and their lives.

I don't see it as "blaming BW." I see it as recognizing the reality that many (if not most) Black mothers are too BM-identified, too indoctrinated, and/or too unhealthy to be automatically trusted to guide their daughters into abundant lifestyles. Many (if not most) Black girls are orphans for all practical purposes.
12:52 a.m.

Khadija said...
Part 3 of final reply

My sister, where have you been that you don't already know that ALL of the things you've accused the BWE community of not addressing have already been discussed---YEARS ago and repeatedly ad nauseum?

One major difference between BWE activism and other BW's blogs is that most BWE bloggers are not going to spend years going around in circles with empty venting (about DBRBM) that leaves BW in the same spot they were in before they started venting. Fixating on venting about DBRBM is a waste of precious time.

BWE blogs tend to move beyond identifying THE source of most of BW's problems (DBRBM) to formulating and implementing escape strategies.

I'm NOT saying that you said this, but I want to make my position clear: I disagree with complaints about BWE blogs that essentially say: "Stop talking about practical escape strategies and the ways in which BW can stop being complicit in their own oppression so we can endlessly vent about DBRBM." Endlessly ruminating over the many physical atrocities and spirit-murders committed by DBRBM is a distraction and diversion from what should be the point---helping more BW and girls Escape From Blackistan and find their way into abundant life.
3:29 p.m.

Blogger Khadija said...
I feel compelled to add another observation. It's something for the silent audience to consider.

I've seen these particular dynamics before. I saw them waaay back in the day when I would attend Nation of Islam (NOI) lectures. Most of the AAs in the audience would get all excited and happy when the speaker from the NOI would (truthfully) talk bad about racist Whites and put White America in general "on blast."

But these same Black audiences would get sullen---and in some cases, actually angry with the NOI ministers---whenever the NOI ministers talked about SELF-correction and the HARD WORK each individual Black person needs to do to free themselves from being so very vulnerable to the whims of people who hate Black people.

Meanwhile, the NOI ministers would tell folks that the purpose of the lectures was to give listeners the tools to free themselves (properly applied work and self-correction). Not to supply entertainment by verbally blasting oppressors.

If somebody's pushed you into a ditch, then it's going to take hard work (climbing) and self-correction (stop digging the hole deeper) to get out of that ditch.

Sitting around screaming and shrieking "They pushed me into this ditch! It's ALL their fault!!" is not---and will never be---a substitute for the hard work (climbing) and self-correction (stop digging the hole deeper) needed to get out of the ditch. No matter how loud the person screams. No matter how angry the person gets while screaming.

We've seen this proven over the decades (actually over a century) with Black males. Black males' general refusal to do any hard work or engage in any self-correction is why BM consistently remain at the very bottom of every multiracial country BM live in. While other nonwhites do the work and self-correction needed for them to keep moving on up.

While negro males sit around endlessly shrieking about "de evil WM" everybody else is moving on up into the Promised Land. The example set by negro males is NOT anything that any sensible person would imitate.

It's been my observation that the BWE escape plan works when you actually work the plan. There's a difference between talking about the escape plan and actually working the escape plan. One major part of the escape plan is to disconnect from, and stop fixating on, negro males.

Those BW who actually work the BWE escape plan generally find much more peace of mind and a higher quality of life. Each individual BW has to decide for herself whether or not she's willing to actually work the escape plan.
2:40 p.m.

I repeat: Sitting around screaming and shrieking “They pushed me into this ditch! It's ALL their fault!!” is not—and will never be—a substitute for the hard work (climbing) and self-correction (stop digging the hole deeper) needed to get out of the ditch. No matter how loud the person screams. No matter how angry the person gets while screaming.

AAs in general (and AABW in particular) need to get past this self-defeating behavior pattern. Part of that process is being willing to ask and contemplate the hard questions that BW like Breukelen Bleu have been asking.

THANK YOU Breukelen Bleu for shining some cleansing and disinfecting sunlight on these issues!

[Addendum: FYI, it's been brought to my attention that Ms. Bleu apparently deleted the Facebook post that I referenced in this post (for those who are wondering about the links that don't work anymore).]