Enough

 

If you watched BET’s hit series “Being Mary Jane,” last night you watched an intense yet serious moment in Black TV history for Black women. Mary Jane I must admit is very relatable yet extreme at the same time. However when Aaliyah and Mary Jane sat at the office table to prep Mary Jane for her potential interview regarding Lee’s Show (Lee is MJ’s ex boyfriend) the conversation got heated. It was actually more like a monologue, because Aaliyah sat quietly.

Here is what was said by MJ: “His project is trafficking in the same tired tropes.” “Black women are crazy, Black women are promiscuous, Black women are angry.” “But, have Black men ever taken responsibility for driving us to that?” “We live in a society that treats us like we’re the bottom of the barrel when it comes to romance.”  “Couple that with constantly trying to prove ourselves as worthy enough, right?” ” Be confident baby girl, but not intimidating, be smart but not emasculating.”  “Never enough but too much, too damn much, all at the same damn time.” “Men are encouraged to objectify our bodies, but the minute we search for sexual satisfaction oh baby we are called WHORES!”

I am sure that some people probably took this as Mary Jane being angry, or bitter even though that is not the message nor intent. However, does Mary Jane make some valid points? Shouldn’t Mary Jane have the right to be angry when she, and other Black women are looked upon as a last resort? The bottom of the barrel and/or less beautiful? Has anyone taken the time to discuss why many Black women feel the way that they (we) do? Of course Black women discuss these things amongst each other, but does anyone else care to listen for understanding instead of  hearing us to respond and downplay our plight?

The truth of the matter is Black women are constantly walking on eggshells trying to be enough, and not too damn much!  Where is the balance in being smart, and then engaging in a conversation yet being perceived as emasculating because of what you know? How is being confident intimidating unless you’re in some form of competition? Everyone should be confident in themselves without being egotistical. Black women can barely take a sexy picture without negative backlash.  Men are encouraged to objectify the bodies of women. Yet women can’t seek to be satisfied sexually.

What’s the point of even having sex if you aren’t seeking physical satisfaction and pleasure? The entire ideology of Black women being promiscuous comes from slavery, and I’m exhausted with explaining that! If you didn’t know Black women did not enjoy being raped! Being raped for years does not equal promiscuity! If a Black woman does consider herself (is) to be promiscuous or sexually fluid that does not give anyone the right to disrespect her or judge her. Even if you feel like she may be disrespecting herself you still should respect her, because you don’t control the actions of others, you control yourself!

Did Mary Jane just express to the world what many of us have been thinking and feeling? If you were constantly jumping through hoops to fit a picture of what someone’s idea of you should be,  wouldn’t that make you crazy at some point?

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Insecure

Today is August 17th, 2017 which is my Birthday (Earthday)… whatever name you want to call it! This year I decided upon a photo shoot. Not just any photo shoot, but a photo shoot and a blog to promote positive body image. I remember being displeased with my body at the age of nine. Some of my body parts seemed to be growing fast, which looked very awkward on a child. Adults would make negative comments about my body and we all know how cruel kids can be.
 
I always seemed to be bigger than everyone else including my friends. Even in high school, I considered myself to be the big girl with the pretty face. You see being “thick” wasn’t all that popular in my day. I mean don’t get me wrong, there has always been males, at that time, that made me feel good about my body- but the damage had already been done. If you don’t feel good about your body it doesn’t even matter what anyone else thinks.
 
The lead girls in music videos were always thin unless it was Buffy the Body and she was all butt back then! I don’t really recall seeing many positive images of bigger women on TV, if I saw any at all. My birthday photo shoot felt like a coming out moment for me. It’s me accepting my entire body flaws and all! Recently one of my Facebook friends asked if there were any girls out here with naturally perfect curves without any enhancements from surgery. If you didn’t know we are in the age of Brazilian butt jobs, liposuction, tummy tucks, and gastric bypass surgery. There is absolutely nothing wrong with any of those procedures if that is what you need to feel beautiful.  As a person that has never had any type of surgery, those avenues just aren’t for me currently.
 
My body may not be perfect, but I love the way I look!  I definitely have curves, and I make an effort to workout 4-5 days a week. I don’t workout due to my weight; I workout because I want to obtain and maintain good health. This blog isn’t just about big or bigger girls. This blog is for every girl or woman who has ever been told that she’s too skinny or too tall. For every woman who has been told her breast or butt weren’t big enough, or that her stomach wasn’t flat enough. It’s for every person that has ever been compared to a model, actress, singer, or some random girl on Instagram that shows all her goods!
 
Embrace whatever body type that you may have. Look at your beautiful naked body in the mirror and speak positive life into yourself! You believe what you tell yourself, and as long as you speak positively to yourself you’ll never feel insecure.
 
Respect and love your body no matter its shape or size.
 
Photo credit JMT Printing & Design photo of Ashley Rae..

It’s just biology

It’s that time of year again! You guessed it prom season. Social media is filled with pictures of young men and women in their gowns and garments, getting ready to enjoy their last high school special occasion before their graduation. There was a picture that I stumbled across of a young lady going to prom and she was pregnant. If I had to guess, I would say somewhere between 6 and 9 months pregnant. She wore a beautiful form-fitting gown. Her hair was styled in loose spiral curls, and her makeup appeared flawless and perfect.

This photo was actually the first time I’ve seen a showing pregnant young lady glammed up for prom. I didn’t think much of it until I read the comments. People are so cruel, and they weren’t shy about what punishment their kids would be receiving for being pregnant in high school. Everything you could think of was listed as a punishment. Some stated she shouldn’t be able to attend prom due to her situation. People commented… “She has other things to be worried about,” “I wouldn’t spend money on prom due to the disappointment of being pregnant.” This is my favorite line “Since she wants to be grown so bad she shouldn’t be involved in kid events such as prom.” Having sex has nothing to do with being grown or acting grown it’s just biology. Biology tells us that both boys and girls go through puberty. Puberty is the time in which kids and/or teens become sexually mature. After becoming sexually mature eventually the act of sex or sexual behavior will occur. Having sex is an act of biology.

There are so many things that disturbed me about the comments for several reasons. I have never understood why reproducing has always been considered a horrible act in the African American community. I’m also curious as to why so many people were interested in punishing this girl. All these judgments were formed from this one picture. No one actually knows what her situation may have been. No one knows who paid for her prom expenses. She could be from a culture where she is already married and now expecting the couple’s first child. Folks are just shooting off at the mouth per usual.

The bigger issue of what the picture and comments represent to society- is plain old misogyny. Why do we continue to mistreat our daughters for mistakes and their bodies? Then wonder why their daughters don’t communicate with them… If we are constantly telling our girls that everything is their fault we can’t possibly be effectively teaching them to love themselves. As of lately, I have been in contact with a few ladies that were pregnant during my in time high school. Many of them informed me that they were mistreated by teachers and shunned by parents when they became pregnant. The audacity of those faculty members to display their negative feelings on a person already in a delicate and emotional state. That kind of behavior is not only appalling but it’s not productive nor necessary.

Do not misunderstand my intent for this article. I thoroughly understand that parents don’t want their teenager to become a young parent. However, if it does happen do you honestly think kicking them out the house, verbally abusing them, or any other punishment will help or hinder them in the long run? Teenage pregnancy isn’t some new phenomenon. Teenagers have been having sex and getting pregnant for decades! In fact the 2011 pregnancy rate was the lowest it has been in over 3 decades, and that’s with 54 out of every 1,000 women getting pregnant at age 15 and up.

Keep in mind girls don’t get themselves pregnant. Yet, we hardly ever hear about parents punishing their sons for their role in pregnancy. Some don’t even feel that their sons have to responsible in the situation. Reinforce safe sex and reevaluate the way you communicate with your daughter about the subject. Remember it’s not about being grown or wanting to be grown, it’s just Biology..

Thank you for visiting let’s talk Rae style…….

Keeping quiet

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What’s one of the first things a person does when they are excited about a new business venture or idea? They share it with people! They share it with friends, family, and loved ones! After all, those are people that bring you joy, comfort, and love! There’s no harm in that, right? There is always a person that doubts your idea or makes a negative comment or two- mainly because they have no drive and don’t believe in themselves- but for the most part, you’ll have people that are genuinely happy and excited for you! Continue reading “Keeping quiet”

She has her own: Independent Women.

 

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I made a Facebook status posing the question “when did being an independent woman equal not needing or wanting a man?” Of course the comments section blew up. Some people stated that social media has a lot to do with this new found definition, while others said they actually heard women stating that they are independent and don’t need a man. However, I’m sure that the statement of not needing a man is being misinterpreted. Continue reading “She has her own: Independent Women.”

The Future President

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I was awakened this morning by a text message from my friend saying she was questioning so much about the world at the moment. I knew then that Donald Trump won the Presidency. To be honest, I’m not really sure how I feel, besides disgusted. While the numbers were being reported last night I tried my very best not to watch it. Yet, when my 10 year old niece called me and said “Ti Ti it’s really bad!” I indeed became nervous. Not to mention my Daddy was so distraught he just decided to sleep rather than watch the numbers. Continue reading “The Future President”

Relationship confusion.

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There seems to be so much love and happy relationships everywhere you turn. I am a person that loves love, all kinds of love. It doesn’t matter if it’s the love you have for your Mom or your bestfriend it’s an amazing feeling. However, I want to focus on the love that you receive within relationships with your boyfriend or girlfriend (significant others). There are people that love each other and show that love for each other by mirroring one another’s love. There are always those that demonstrate their love in completely different ways, but it’s just how they love (Here is where things get twisted). Continue reading “Relationship confusion.”

Between Black men & women..

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The existence of Black people in this country (USA) is rooted in an extremely complicated past. By complicated, I mean children being taken from their Mothers and sold into slavery. Women being raped by the Master in order to produce more slaves. Husbands being emasculated by the Master in front of his wife and family; ultimately leaving him powerless. Did I mention women being raped in front of their husbands? Again, leaving the Black man powerless to protect her. Hundreds of years of beating, lynching, and being treated like animals has definitely taken a toll on our ethnic group as a whole. For hundreds of years Black women have been unprotected, and not just because of the cruelty of slavery. Continue reading “Between Black men & women..”

Handle YOUR business in the bathroom.

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I take weekly trips to Target- sometimes three times a week. My trips include me drinking a Sweet Tooth Latte from Biggby and consuming a bottle of Absopure right after. After I go through the home goods, cleaning, intimates, and grocery aisles, it happens: the great bathroom debate. I’m stuck in checkout trying to figure out if I can retain my urge to tinkle until I get home. Continue reading “Handle YOUR business in the bathroom.”

Is it dating?!

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Dating can be tricky in 2016. Hell, dating can be down right scary! Some people are dating to find a mate, and others are dating just to have a good time. Usually for a man to take a woman on a date, it means that he somewhat likes her. At the very least, he’s interested in her. Women accept date offers mainly to determine if they like the person, and to view the guy’s behavior and actions in public. Dates also determine chemistry between both parties. Continue reading “Is it dating?!”