Honest Conversations in a World that isn’t Genderless & Oblivious to Race

Look, I had a few ideas for blog posts today. Let’s be honest, most of them were silly and kind of absurd. Then I read my friend Amanda’s piece, she writes over at Parenting by Dummies, and well, it seemed that it’s time to just talk about her post.

Our headlines have been bombarded with ugly words and uncomfortable conversations lately. How long did we debate whether or not Sandra Fluke is

Source: absolutelymadness.tumblr.com via Jennifer on Pinterest

a slut because she dared voice an opinion about birth control?

Then Trayvon¬†Martin was gunned down and we all started shifting uncomfortably in our seats. We might have an African American president but we still aren’t comfortable with race. Just like we aren’t totally comfortable with women’s sexual freedom and place in business.

Last week’s horrific news of Trayvon Martin hit closer to home because he was still a child at 17. I’ve been thinking to myself lately how lucky I feel that my girls are still so young that I don’t need to answer difficult questions yet on why women’s reproductive rights are so easily called into question in this day and age. But when an innocent kid gets killed, it becomes murkier because it’s about a kid.

Then I read Amanda’s story, about her bi-racial adorable 4th grader being called a Nigger by his classmates. Suddenly the uncomfortable conversations are right in her lap. They are raging in her mind and she is torn between wanting to unleash on this asshole kid who would say something so hurtful to her own son while questioning her own self – how do you talk to your kids about this stuff, how do you prepare them for ugly words hurled at them? How do you teach them to react?

And further, this isn’t just about Amanda’s kid. It’s not just about the ugly words this other kid learned at home to relay to her son, it’s about how we all teach our kids to behave in school and in life.

I love this post that talks about forgetting the label bully and instead teaching our kids to be heroes. We need to lose the negative labeling and praise the positive behavior.

It doesn’t offer any answers for Amanda and it doesn’t tell you how to talk to your kids about ugly words but it still starts a conversation about the kinds of behavior we want to see from our own kids, which I think is just as important.

“Like” the Wired Momma Facebook page to keep up with all sorts of topics….I’m off to a panel discussion on work-life balance…you can count on some topics on this subject later this week. It never gets old.

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