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What is Like to be a Young, Black Women in America

by Olivia Booth 10 days ago in activism

The struggles of being a Minority and Women in America.

In life, people are always thrown challenges that they need to overcome and move past to life on with one's life, but when a certain group of people have it much harder than others it can be much harder to move past. For example, African Americans on average have it much harder than other groups due to discrimination in the work place and also while during everyday tasks. Another group that are marginalized is women often there is a stigma that women are less than men and this can be reflected in one's pay in the work place and also discrimination regarding intelligence and other attributes. Lastly, the younger people of these groups are often undermined because of being young meaning that they do not know as much because they have not been around as long as other people have.

Now put all those things together and you get me. A young, black women who is trying to live her live without messing with someone else, but I always seem to be a problem in someones eyes. In some peoples, it is because I am black therefore I am inferior and do not deserve a voice regarding anything important. For other groups it is because I am a women and therefore I do not know what I am talking about and that I should focus on "more important" things like finding a husband and starting a family. Ultimately, this leaves one last group of people who take offense to me voicing my opinion when I am still young and do not have enough knowledge and experience to speak on a topic. This makes life extremely frustrating because it is almost as if these people have impossible standards for me to follow to appease themselves, when my life does not revolve around them.

This has bled into the way I act around certain people especially when I was younger. I began to change the way I talked around people I was unfamiliar with to sound more "friendly" and less "ghetto". I also changed the way I dressed very often I would get criticized for what I was wearing and that it was to "poor looking" or " hood". The most common issue that people had with my appearance was my hair and that wearing my natural hair down would be considered unprofessional and distracting. This sent me into state where I did not know who I was because I felt as if I was putting on a persona that was not me. I wanted to genuine with people, but I was afraid I would judged for what I do and where.

It took me a couple years and being around people who accepted me for who I was to be able to be comfortable about who I am and what I stand for. I began to ignore the stares I got when I wore what I wanted to and also the stigma I got for what I talked about or who I hung out with. But this should not be an issue that I or anyone else like me should have to face in their everyday life. Everybody should address that there is stereotypes that specific groups have, but this does not mean that people should push them onto others. Also, these stereotypes should not be part of society in the first place, they are severely outdated and do not apply to todays society. The first reason is that women and men mostly have the same rights to do anything that is not against the law and the same goes for African Americans and white people. Therefore, there is no reason that they still exist if everyone is to be treated and respected the same way.


Olivia Booth

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