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Old 03-02-2016, 05:29 PM
 
Location: Round Rock, Texas
10,129 posts, read 9,352,192 times
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Can't address all of the posts at the moment since I am at work (will do that at a later time), but I just wanted to say that I appreciate all of your posts. They are very well thought out and sincere .... Thank you.
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Old 03-02-2016, 05:31 PM
 
1,120 posts, read 1,188,683 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riaelise View Post

Thanks in advance.
Pretty is so subjective. Some people's pretty is another person's repulsion. Yes, many people are going to prefer their favorite type of skin, usually something resembling their families skin. Some people don't care or actually prefer a different type of skin from their own.

There are so many examples of beautiful dark skinned women in American TV and Media. Sofia Vergara comes to mind.

Just keep telling her how beautiful she is to you. She will come to her senses soon enough when she gets older and has to say no to all the boys.
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Old 03-02-2016, 06:16 PM
 
Location: Out West
20,745 posts, read 15,492,513 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riaelise View Post
I had to pause for a moment before posting this because I find it personal but I'm hoping that maybe someone can offer me some advice. I want to say the right thing and do the right thing. We are a multiracial household. I am of West Indian/Native American/Brasilian heritage (so basically I'm white, black, and native - my mother has the Jamaican/Native descent and my father is of african, white, and native descent, like many brasilians). My husband is Mexican. Our two children, girls, are of mixed race. As genes are wont to do, one girl (my 9 year old) is more of a lighter/tanned olive while the other (4 years old) is clearly more of a bronze complexion with dark hair and dark eyes. One child favors her father and the other heavily favors me (as one can see from my pic I have darker skinned, dark hair and dark eyes)

Out of the blue the other day, my four year old mentioned that she doesn't feel pretty because she has darker skin. I was momentarily taken aback because I don't understand how came to that conclusion for a number of reasons - a) we never make any comments about skin color or anything in our home, b) I haven't heard anyone make comments about her skin color. In fact, a lot of people find her to be pretty and routinely compliment her, and c) she is quite young to think such a thing. I don't understand why she would feel "not pretty", especially due to complexion.

I need advice because like I said, I really want to handle this well. What I absolutely don't want is for her self esteem to be tied to such a thing as skin color. Quite frankly that makes me sad. I didn't have that have that issue because frankly where I grew up (in NYC) there were many different types of faces. I never once thought about the color of my skin. I am what I am. Unfortunately, her world (in Texas) isn't particularly diverse. The neighborhood we live in is mostly White, the school she will attend is mostly White, her friends are White. I can only speculate that she is becoming aware of her difference because of this. Or the fact that none of her cousins on the Mexican side of her family look like her. I don't know.

Thanks in advance.
Unfortunately, 4 years old is not too early to be thinking those types of things. It happens more than you think.

I went through a period of my life where I thought I was the ugliest thing on the planet when I was quite young - maybe about 6, 7, or 8 years old. How my mom took care of that was that she brought me over to the full length mirror, knelt down, and began to point out every single feature that she liked, and WHY she liked it. I mean, she went all out. "Your face shape is oval, models all over the world want an oval face", "your eyes are green, do you know how special you are to have green eyes?" "Your smile is contagious, it lights up a room, and people can't help but smile when you smile", I mean she went on and on.

It made such an impact, that I remember her words exactly, and those are all of my favorite features to this day.
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:00 PM
 
15,795 posts, read 13,215,809 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hobo7396 View Post
Pretty is so subjective. Some people's pretty is another person's repulsion. Yes, many people are going to prefer their favorite type of skin, usually something resembling their families skin. Some people don't care or actually prefer a different type of skin from their own.

There are so many examples of beautiful dark skinned women in American TV and Media. Sofia Vergara comes to mind.

Just keep telling her how beautiful she is to you. She will come to her senses soon enough when she gets older and has to say no to all the boys.
Sofia Vergara is dark skinned?

She is a natural blonde with very light skin for a Colombian. She has to darken her skin and hair in order to get roles as a latina on American TV.
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:02 PM
 
1,040 posts, read 544,833 times
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Yes, make sure she's exposed to the real world, in all it's variety and beauty. And please don't make her observation into a big deal (for her). It doesn't sound like you would anyway. Good luck.
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Old 03-02-2016, 07:05 PM
 
15,795 posts, read 13,215,809 times
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As an aside, I would be more concerned about the other attitudes that go with the ones about skin color more so than just "prettiness". Girls of all races already get so much pressure to look a certain and to value themselves by how much they look like some societal standard. I would really take the conversation far, far away from beauty and skin, because it will overemphasize the importance of looks and instead find role models for all sorts of positive aspects like intelligence, perseverance, kindness, etc in women of color.
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:25 PM
 
1,120 posts, read 1,188,683 times
Reputation: 1013
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkb0714 View Post
Sofia Vergara is dark skinned?
Umm, i guess?

Quote:
She has to darken her skin and hair in order to get roles
Oh, i see. Thank you. So the beautiful woman has dark skin and dark hair. Got it.
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:41 PM
 
1,040 posts, read 544,833 times
Reputation: 1609
Default My daughter thinks she is not pretty because she is darker skinned

Then again, is it healthy for your daughter to think she must be "pretty"? Whatever that might be. It's an underlying question and it's a big one. We've all got work to do.
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Old 03-02-2016, 08:47 PM
 
Location: Dallas, TX and Las Vegas, NV
5,095 posts, read 3,798,035 times
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My youngest grandchild is 5 and my oldest is graduating from college this year. If your child was my grandkid I would be trying very hard to get you guys to find a more diverse community. All the brown dolls and picture books are not going to give your kids a variety of friends that assures her she is a rose in a bouquet of lovely varied flowers instead of a single pink rose in a bouquet of reds. Its hard enough to be different as an adult. Certainly you can move or at the very least find her activities or groups -- recreation at the YWCA, a diverse church, a preschool, kiddie sports thru a community center in a more diverse area.
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Old 03-02-2016, 09:15 PM
 
Location: Howard County, Maryland
1,539 posts, read 1,600,973 times
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My daughter is biracial (black/white) and the rest of my family is white (she's adopted). She too went through this phase of saying things like that when she was about 4. It wasn't that she didn't think she was pretty but rather, she just wanted to fit in with her friends. She wanted to look like everyone else in her world. Fortunately, we moved a year later to another state and intentionally sought out a more diverse neighborhood, school, church. I cannot imagine how it must feel for a child to be visibly different from their peers; they don't have the maturity to comprehend it. I don't know how feasible it is for you to immerse your child in a more diverse environment but I'm sure you can see the value of such an environment.
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