Black Parenting : I'ma Give You Something to Cry For

Discussion in 'Black Parenting' started by river, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. river

    river Watch Her Flow MEMBER

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    How many of us have said this to our child? Do we know that this is what our slavemasters told us when they sold our family members away from us? we weren't allowed to cry or express any emotion other than complete happiness and satisfaction with our enslaved state. White psychiatrists came up with a malady called drapetomanie. This dreadful disease afflicted its victim with an uncontrollable urge to run away from slavery. Any display of dissatisfaction or moroseness was seen as indicative of the onset of drapetomania and the recommended treatment was to beat the devil out of the slave.

    They tell us slavery was over a hundred and forty three years ago. Then why do we continue to raise our children as slaves, to think like slaves, act like slaves and accept slavish treatment as their due? We defend our practices because we do not know where they come from. That's what my mama did and her mama before her and her mama before her. But do we want to perpetuate that which was in fact shameful for our ancestors in a mistaken effort to honor them?
     
  2. PurpleMoons

    PurpleMoons Administrator STAFF

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    I have said this and still say this at times to my children. The only difference is, its not said to restrict my kids from feeling emotions. Its said to let them know there are much worst things they will face in the world. That they must understand not getting to go outside, or not getting that item the want so badly, is no way in comparison to getting whipped by a police officer, or raped by a predator, and/or killed by psychopaths.

    So therefore, if you're going to cry, consider there are more worst ills to cry about. Our children have to have tougher skins in order to survive in this world. And when they go out into the world, we won't be able to protect them from many of those ills. They must learn to pick there battles and know when to cry out against them.

    Slave masters may have said these things to our Ancestors, but the difference is, they did not care about our Ancestors. And they did not care about what happened to them. I don't treat my children like slaves. I don't make them work in hot fields from sun up to sun down. I don't feed them things that i won't eat myself, and i don't limited them from dreaming big. But i will not tolerate them being broken over little things which will make no difference in their lives, as opposed to the impact of things that could/will kill them mentally and spiritually.

    Call it justification if you will. But until i learn of a more effective method for instilling these differences into the minds of my children, i have to work with what i got. My parents use to say the same things to me, and when i got old enough to understand why they did, it made me stronger in spirit. And i appreciated the lessons they were trying to teach me.

    :heart:
     
  3. oldiesman

    oldiesman Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    gee,and all this time i thought that it was because i had cut up and knew that i had a buttwhipping coming.
     
  4. sweet apple*pie

    sweet apple*pie Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    This was very powerful, River! It's interesting...we say things, and for most of us...we never explore or question why with say them....

    Food for thought, most certainly. Thanks for bringing this to my attention.
     
  5. river

    river Watch Her Flow MEMBER

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    Hey sista,

    This is what I like to do, give people food for thought. We are all adults and free to do as we please to some extent, more or less.

    To make decisions and take actions without knowledge is not freedom but puts us in bondage to those who ddo have knowledge.

    I know that everything I say is not the gospel truth handed down from on High, but it is something to take into consideration as we thyink about what we are doing and why we are doing it.
     
  6. lilpea

    lilpea Moderator STAFF

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    Drapetomanie?

    Is this why my father was always calling me Tommie Huntin something...never saying in one place too long.. alway looking over the next hill, around the next corner....thanks... bye the way i got to go see ya..

    Lilpea :1on1:
     
  7. skuderjaymes

    skuderjaymes Contextualizer Synthesizer MEMBER

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    " ..a mind that has conceived a plan for living must never lose sight of the
    chaos against which that plan was conceived."


    That quote is from the epilogue of Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man (1952), which
    won the National Book Award over Hemingway, Steinbeck and others... The quote has to do
    with Context.. with keeping in mind why something is done the way it's done.
    the chaos has got to be kept in mind.. otherwise you are likely to go on with
    a practice, long after the need has disappeared. The whole idea that beating a
    child is the way to teach him is, in my opinion twisted. It's residue from the
    brutality of slavery and the terrorism of the Jim Crow south and the northern
    ghettos. Against that chaos, whistling at the wrong time could mean the most
    brutal death one could conceive.. even for a child.. as was the case of Emmit
    Till and countless others before the national press gave a dam.. who konws
    how many unmarked graves rest the remains of Rosas and Martins that
    stood up before it was time.. so that chaos required a cut to the chase with
    regard to disciplining our children.. Life itself was at stake..so lessons had
    to be learned immediately.. But over time, those practices became a permanent
    part of family culture and were handed down from generation to generation..
    without information regarding the chaos against which those practices were
    conceived
    .. they were simply passed.. so Jim Crow still
    lives in the culture of our families.. His presence is still felt.. his
    cruelty is now built into our systems of discipline.. and the result is,
    in my opinion, a twisted idea of what Love is.. and what Love does.. My best
    friend growing up got naked whoopins with an extension cord.. for doing things
    he ought not have been doing but that did not merit that kind of punishment..
    breaking plate or not doing a chore.. getting a low mark on the report card..
    that kind of thing.. An Adult friend of mine's Mother made them soak in the tub
    first, so the skin was nice and supple.. before whipping them with an extension
    cord.. that was discipline in their houses.. the chaos no longer mattered, the
    plan was in motion and that was that..
     
  8. cherryblossom

    cherryblossom Banned MEMBER

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    I've never heard of that phrase being connected to slavery or the selling of enslaved family members.


    Do you have any further information on that?
     
  9. blkbutterfly41

    blkbutterfly41 Banned MEMBER

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    Profound as usual !! We got the iron cord on occassion. Was that abusive ?? I don't know....................

    But I wonder.................... Then verses Now

    We protected our kids to the point that we can't even discipline them with any whippings. Very few lessons are learned with any impact.

    But do they still learn at an adult point in life ?? Paying an higher price ??

    I wonder.................


     
  10. skuderjaymes

    skuderjaymes Contextualizer Synthesizer MEMBER

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    hey Miss butterfly..

    the only impact whippings gave me was the impact of whatever I was being
    hit with impacting my body. And it impacted my relationship with my parents
    by introducing fear.. at least for a while.. after the fear wore off, all that
    was left was anger. The last whooping I got, I was 16 years old.. 6 foot 4,
    185 pounds.. I stood there and looked at her the entire time.. I didn't even
    move.. it was ridiculous, I knew it and she knew it.. I said to myself right
    then and their "soon as I graduate I'm out of here".. and thats what happens
    parents lose their kids through beating them.. I think it's much more
    important to establish a rapport with your children.. my telling my son I'm
    disappointed with his behavior has 10 times the weight of my mother's or
    father's beatings.. we talk and we understand each other.. I take the time
    to go through the details of whats going on with him.. I know him and he
    knows me.. he's not afraid of me.. I'm the person he runs to when he is
    afraid.. I have influence with my children.. they come to me for advice..
    they don't fear me. And I don't want them to. we respect each other.

    And you know the funny thing is, I'm always getting compliments on how
    well behaved my children are.. and also how bright their personalities are..
    they're not well-behaved out of fear of reprisal.. they are well behaved
    because they are well-adjusted young men.. and that is my goal.. not to
    have them fear me until they are out of my custody..

    you know another funny thing .. not really funny but you know what I mean..
    is parents that I've known all their life.. so I know how they were done as a
    child and what affect it had on them.. they turn around and do the exact same
    thing to their children.. they reflect back on their beatings as a child and smile
    like they were funny.. when really they were traumatic.. and I think that
    physical abuse of a child is also psychological abuse because that child is
    totally dependent on that adult.. so that child has to find something to do
    with these confused feelings.. cause the one that would comfort the child
    is the same one that hurt the child to begin with.. I think that is confusing
    for a developing young mind... and that's why I say I think it messes with
    that childs idea of what love is.. and what love is suppose to do.
     
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