Resilience in Adversity: A Black Woman’s Letter to Her Younger Self

Dear black girl, I see you; I love you despite any heartbreaks, despite all of the setbacks and the times you had to hide your tears to protect your heart. Dear black girl, stop hiding from who you are because embracing who you are is the beauty you seek and the acceptance you crave.

Dear black girl, your uniqueness is your greatest strength. Stand tall in your authenticity in a world that might make you feel you must conform. Your hair, your skin, and your features are all uniquely beautiful. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise. Celebrate the richness of your heritage, for it is what makes you extraordinary.

Dear black girl, open your eyes to see the real you, flaws and all, because it’s through the flaws that you will rise through your pain.

Dear black girl, you’ve been called the “angry black woman,” a label that stings with the weight of stereotypes and prejudices. It’s painful. To be reduced to a stereotype, to have your passion and strength mistaken for anger. Dear black girl, don’t let those words define you. Do not let the judgments of others dim your light. Stand tall, speak your truth, and know your voice deserves to be heard. You are assertive and passionate. Embrace these qualities; they are your superpowers.

Dear black girl, it’s time to acknowledge your fear of the angry black woman label to find the gentle being that you are. You fear that showing your gentle side will leave you open for heartbreak and betrayal; you anticipate danger even when danger is nowhere in sight.

Dear Black Girl, as I look back at you, I can’t help but smile. You are resilient, powerful, and beautifully unique. Trust in the journey, believe in your strength and know that the woman you are becoming is someone to be proud of.

Dear black girl, take my hand and see yourself as you were before the labels, harsh words, and hurt. Dear black girl, I love you, I see you, do you see you? Can you see you? Dear black girl, thank you for always protecting me, but I can protect me now. Trust that I am learning the skills to protect my heart. Dear black girl, thank you for loving me so much. I can now embrace you because I finally embrace me.

I am a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles and offer complimentary 15-minute initial consultations. If you are a professional woman seeking counseling, you may click here to schedule an appointment.

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