Why are black parents verbally abusive to their children?
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Maria Lloyd: Black Parents, Respect Your Children

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Why are black parents verbally abusive to their children?
Photography: nhophotos.com

by Maria Lloyd

We’ve all witnessed it before: A black parent screaming profanities at their children as if they’ve been possessed by a demon. It’s a scene that has become far too common for children being raised by a black parent. Of course, this is not to say every African-American parent verbally abuses their children. A blanket statement of that nature would show ignorance and a lack of research on my part. I’m fortunate to know black parents who talk to their children with the same respectful tone and vocabulary that they’d use in a professional setting. To those parents, I simply say “Thank you.”

For those of you who resort to screaming and yelling profanities at your child, I advise you to take a deep look within yourself and abolish the source of your repulsive behavior. Your abuse is a cancer that spreads from one generation to the next, fueling an anger that resides within your children for the rest of their lives. Contrary to popular belief, I believe you love your seed with all of your heart, but you’re refusing to acknowledge your problem(s) which is indicative of your behavior. Today, on behalf of your children, I am demanding that you respect them. Your behavior will cause them to face a whirlwind of problems: low self-esteem, violent behavior, abusive behavior, suicide, social defects, etc. More than likely, you are a victim of abuse yourself, so below are ways that you can change your behavior and save your children:

Dissociate from the past
There is no point lamenting about what has happened in the past. It is over. Do not deny it either. Just accept that it has happened and that you are now on the road to emotional health. You may not have exercised control over your past but you can take charge over your own future from now on. Look at the past as lessons that point out what you no longer want for yourself. A change in environment may be helpful for you to de-associate from your past.

Build self-esteem
Surrounding yourself with people who value you is an important part of the healing process. Form your own support group or join an online community that helps support its members to gain strength. It is vital that you remember what makes you a unique and valuable person.

Become empowered
Understand that you are the only person who has power over yourself. One reason why you have been subjected to emotional abuse is that you have handed your power over to your abuser. In reality, no one can make you do anything if you do not let them. Realize that only you hold the power. Look for ways to empower yourself.

Listen to your conscience
You are the only person who knows what is best for you. No one leads your life for you. Do what feels right. Trust your intuition.

Gain self-control
Focus on improving your own life. In doing this you will discover your own self-worth. You can then decide who you want to interact with.

Set boundaries and expectations
Spend time setting boundaries and expectations for treatment in future interactions with people. Commit to a decision that you do not want to enter into any unhealthy liaisons any more. If you are clear in what you want, you are more likely to attract kind people.

Take care of yourself
Find things to do that makes you feel happy. Take a class or pick up a hobby. Try to recall what it is that you have always wanted to explore. With no one telling you what to do or holding you back, the possibilities are endless.

Source: Evelyn Lim, certified NLP practitioner and life coach

Chart revealing the difference between the way white parents communicate with their children versus black parents.
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