Raising Biracial Kids | A Letter to Future Bullies
The memory still stings like a knife in the back.
I’ve been thinking about this post for awhile. In fact, it’s been almost a year that I have been stewing, trying to find the words. It was the day my 6 year old son came home from school, saying that other kids were making fun of him. And I wasn’t there. I remember how hard it was for my son to find the words to describe what happened and to describe how he felt. The concept was so foreign, so unknown to him that he struggled with the anger he felt. He was bullied, and he didn’t understand why. How could kids, kids his own age be this cruel?
But then I remember the first time I was teased. I was 6. I remember the days and every day after like it was yesterday. Those memories still sting today. And though I may be older, wiser and a little tougher skinned now than 20+ years ago, I know the affects of bullying still creep up on me today. Am I good enough? Am I pretty enough? Am I accepted enough? Am I loved enough?
I look at my Whasian kids and see nothing but beauty. Their almond shaped eyes, that become “more Asian” when they smile. Their olive tanned skin, perfection. Their delicate cheekbones. That point in their chins. Their wispy eyebrows. The blending of cultures. Their straight fine hair with a hint of a curl. I see so much potential, so much love and 1000% uniqueness from being biracial and beautiful. But with differences comes the world, like a freight train. And so with the heavy heart of a mom of two beautiful biracial kids, I write this letter to all of the future bullies of my children.
Dear Future Bullies of My Kids,
I know you are out there. I know that you will one day find my kids. And I won’t be there to protect them. You’re going to seek them out. You will see that they are smaller than you. Different from you. They are going to have smiles that radiate true joy. And that is going to scare you. Madden you. You will see those beautiful biracial features that I have praised them for everyday of their lives, and in one day you will tear down their worlds and their psyches with your words. You will use your words, terrible words to try and cut them down. To wipe those smiles off their faces, and steal their joy. It’s all for a few moments of crowning glory on your part, a few pats on the back from your buddies and then you will walk away and forget. You’ll never realize the years of damage you are causing to my children’s lives. You’ll never realize the the possible damage you are causing to your own life. And it’s all for those few fleeting moments of what feels like “victory.”
I know who you are, even though I have never met you. And I hurt for you. I am saddened by the feeling that you need to tear down someone else to make yourself feel better. I am saddened that it is easier to find cruelty in the world than beauty in it. I hurt that bullying is easier than love.
And so I pray for you. I pray that you will find the acceptance and love and joy that I find on my kids’ faces everyday. I pray that you will see those beautiful features on my kids’ faces and realize that those differences make them worthy of love, not hate. I pray that my children will continue to radiate smiles and joy to you despite your words. I pray that your actions will make them stronger, wiser and above your bullying.
I urge you to see beyond the differences and plead with you to find the beauty that I see. My children are beautiful. You are beautiful.
They cannot avoid you. But they can love you anyway. I pray that they will. And I pray that I can love you too.
I look at my son, now almost a year later and can feel how the bullying still affects him. Every time he comes home with his head down, complaining about school or even just having a bad day, I hurt wondering if another bully has entered his life. Hopefully, I will look back at this letter and pray…pray hard.