Racism as a mental health issue and as a public health crisis is not talked about enough. Trauma is real and the experiences that Black people and people of color go through every day in a systemically racist world can take a huge toll on their well being.
It’s so important that we as parents are knowledgeable about how this shows up in our lives with our kids. Most commonly it shows up as depression, anxiety, and PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder). We need to recognize these symptoms as well as be as proactive as possible. Most therapists aren’t prepared with the training to really provide the help people need when it comes to the trauma of racism. Integrating ways to dismantle racism are often left out of traditional therapy sessions despite the healing power that it offers.
Check out my video where I talk more about it:
As a white parent of multiracial children with a partner who is brown, it means that I have to understand the effect that this has on my family and know what it looks like for me to support them. I need to be deeply reflective of my white privilege as well as emotions that may be triggered. I need to be able to navigate this in a way that is most helpful for my family.
It’s really important that we as parents take a holistic approach when addressing these issues. We have to look at how we are being affected, the impact that us being affected can have on our kids, and how are kids are being affected. Then exploring triggers and coping mechanisms as well. We also need to see how we create the environment that our kids need in their school and in our community to support their well being. Lastly, we need to be actively involved in creating social change and teaching it to our kids. Social justice education is a very empowering tool and a really strong way to approach this public health crisis.
Looking for support? Here are a few ways we can help:
Are you feeling challenged as a parent of a multiracial family?
Schedule a parenting support call to discuss how we can help. On the call, we will talk about what’s coming for you, what you are stuck on, and what’s going on for you and your family. We will also explore your hopes and desires for your family and talk about what could be helpful to improve the challenge and get you unstuck.
Join the community
Looking for a supportive community of like minded parents? Join the Multiracial Parenting Network.
It can be frustrating and hard when white people just don’t get it. How often this season have you heard white people in your life say you were being too “sensitive” or take things too “seriously” for?
Being racially conscious as a white person also means that you experience many feelings when issues of race show up in your life.
Keep in mind these specific strategies are to be used with people that you already have some type of relationship with such as a friend, co-worker, family member or acquaintance. Continue to be aware of the language that is used around you.