Being a black father, I notice people being shocked that I am even involved with my children -- that's about living in a wider racist culture. Black masculinity has always been under attack. This Father's Day I want to encourage every black dad out there to remember you don't have to conform, you can do it differently, if you dare.
With kids growing up surrounded by advertising, movies and TV, toys, books, and clothes that tell them that some things are for girls, and others are for boys, we're already fighting an uphill battle if our goal is to raise girls who know that they can solve tough, real world problems, and boys who are interested in collaboration, not just competition.
I want the kids in my life to feel comfortable with their bodies, positive and negative. To me, that doesn't mean never saying they don't like their thighs. In the end, fat or thin acceptance is simply body acceptance. The way you get to the point where you're comfortable with your body is what matters.
Talk to your son about his body. Give him the vocabulary that he needs to communicate how he feels about himself. Teach him that it's normal to think about his appearance. Teach him that being a boy doesn't take away his right to have feelings about his body. Don't assume that you can talk about your son's body any differently than you talk about your daughter's.
My daughter Tara is 4 and in full-on princess mode. She loves to dress up like one and she loves to play with her princess dolls, Barbies included. Caity, her older sister, is now 9 and totally over princesses. Kaput. I hate the pinkwashing and sexualization that is going on when it comes to the marketing to our daughters these days.
More words were exchanged between us two just the day before. Trying to sort out the tangled web of emotions from the days prior. He, with a hoodie pulled over his face. Me, raw emotions and bundled nerves pleading for answers. Both of us feeling raw and exposed. On a road of good intentions, going nowhere fast.
When my son came to me with questions about a sudden acne breakout, I realized I had prided myself in spending so much time educating my daughter about great skin care habits and had neglected to do the same for my son. So here are some tips for you to share with your son to help him keep his skin looking and feeling great.