Black women are hauled over the white-hot coals of racism and sexism on the regular, in real life and especially online, where the trolls spew their anonymous venom. We’re called everything from ugly to “cum dumpsters.” White men call us far worse. Even the president of the United States has gotten in on it. And when it happens, very few show up for us.
So I am truly conflicted to even highlight the fact of yet another black woman getting verbally socked on the internets, especially for her mothering skills, which is a job both sacred and hard as fuck. For. So. Many. Reasons. For all the reasons. We are raising children in a country that has continually attacked our bodies and our dignity, and we often drown in forces beyond our control.
That is the reality of black mothering—under attack since the Pat Moynihan years.
But damn, Draya, baby girl, in the words of Next, you’re making it hard for me.
The former Basketball Wives LA star got online and posted a since-deleted post about being sick of hearing about her son’s homework. And how boring it was. And about how she threw a hissy fit and wouldn’t sign a paper, so her son lost points on his grade.
Now, we know this child is not the sharpest heel in the closet, but if I rolled my eyes any harder, they would go zombie white.
Read and weep:
Now, this fool did ask “What y’all think?” so she kinda asked for it.
Oh, and she got it.
Some of it was funny, but some of it went beyond, being nothing but straight misogynoir:
Fuck that. Half these NFL and NBA players got shitloads of kids and don’t do shit for them. I’m not excusing Draya’s behavior, but I find it interesting how our community dumps on mothers on the regular, but fathers get all sorts of passes. If any commentary at all.
We know that Draya was a young mother, having her first kid at 17; the father of that child was incarcerated for 10 years while she was seven months pregnant.
But I get it—she sounded crazy. Listening to a speech and signing a piece of paper seems like a very small thing to do for your child. And the way she goes in on social media about her clothes, her hair, her food—but seems too bothered to just listen to a damn speech (I mean, how many times have I read Caps for Sale?)—seems selfish.
I don’t presume to have a lock on the secret to good mothering—God knows I feel the mother guilt all mothers do—but I’ve learned a few things, and spending time with your children, regardless of whether you’re bored or want to be somewhere else, is a key to their well-adjusted development.
Lots of parents complain about homework—saying it’s excessive, and that’s a legitimate beef. But dummy, take that up with the teacher, not the whole world.
I’m sure Draya loves her kids, but maybe, just maybe, this chin check will be the thing to at least have her assess some things about her parenting. Maybe it will allow her to sit back and really consider why people reacted so vociferously. Maybe she could take some parenting classes. No shame in that.
But I still have empathy for her because I know it’s hard being a black mother; I also know that black women are bullied on the regular—online and in real life— and I’m not down with it. In fact, I hate it.