Article Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed

Why Is It Important for Black Parents to Talk About Racism?


Oct. 30, 2017 Psychology Today

Decades of research have explored how racism affects the mental health and functioning of African American and Black youth. In an article published in the current issue of the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, the authors discuss that Black youth may experience discrimination and racism; but still be resilient and experience positive outcomes (Jones & Neblett, 2017). The question that may come to mind is “how can someone experience racism and not have negative effects such as depression or low self-esteem”?

Many scholars have highlighted the importance of having the “race talk” or engaging in racial-ethnic socialization (RES). RES involves teaching children about their racial and ethnic heritage, as well as, preparing them to cope with discrimination (Hughes et al., 2006; Jones & Neblett, 2017). Earlier this year, the American Psychological Association released a tool-kit to help parents engage in healthy communication about race and racism. This resource is particularly important given the continued rise of racism and discrimination in America, particularly through social media. The article by Jones and Neblett (2017) demonstrate that engaging in racial and ethnic socialization improves academic performance, decreases depression risk, reduces problem behavior, and provides positive racial identity attitudes. By talking about racism, researchers note that Black parents prepare their children to overcome adversity by challenging stereotypes and allowing Black youth to view their racial identity more positively (e.g., Jones and Neblett, 2017).

In a previous blog, I provided some brief tips on talking about racial differences.

  • Recognize your own views on racial issues
  • Be prepared to manage your emotions and help your child cope. Children often pick up on the behaviors of adults and repeat those. It’s important to model effective ways to cope with racism and discrimination.
  • Use activities, books, or movies to talk about racial differences. By exposing children to books or museums can help share information and start conversations.
  • Share some of your experiences in dealing with racism and discrimination
Read More on Psychology Today

Gene Upshaw Player Assistance Trust Fund

Apply Today

All Resources

Tell Me More

Failure is not an option.

Former NFL player Freddie Scott II is back with more thoughts on success.

Read More

How to Prevent Ungrateful Kids During Winter Holidays

Don’t break your budget or change your relationship with your kids this holiday season.

Read More

The Next Generation of You:

Our exclusive series focuses on first-round draft choice Darrin Nelson.

Read More

27 Years Strong: Join Us!

Your Action can be Opportunity for Many.

Read More

How to Freeze Your Credit

Make sure you know how to respond to cyberattacks.

Read More

The Number-One Rule For Better Weight Loss

It’s not your diet or exercise routine.

Read More

These Are the 20 Best Places to Work in 2018

Finding the right employer is a difficult task.

Read More

The Importance of Kindness

Being kind can strengthen your relationships and sense of satisfaction in life.

Read More