For the first two installments of November's Being a Better Keeper for Your Sister, I discussed foundational principles, that can help all of us gain a better connection with our sisters in melanin. Moving forward though, I will discuss ways to strengthen our soul sisters and sister circle.
I'm sure that most of you can physically feel the change that is coming about. Whether that be our resistance, making healthier eating choices or simply reclaiming pieces of ourselves from the oppressor. While many of us are changing the game, we are still allowing for our girls to remain the same, because we are often too uncomfortable to challenge their perspectives.
I say this all the time, but you can call up any of my friends right now, and they'll let you know that, B is nobody's yes man. To the point where, I'm sure some of them have spent periods of time, upset with me until my words rang true. From my perspective on friendship, we owe it to those around us to help them grow, and to share our nuggets of wisdom that we've acquired along the way. I also want to call attention to the fact that, this task isn't just for the strong friends to fulfill.
They always say that if you are doing better than everyone around you than you're in the wrong circle. I also like to think that if you aren't helping to increase your circles stock value then what are you doing?
For some of us it is so easy to tell it like it is, until the target of that like it is becomes a loved one. In the Black community, we still have plenty work to do in order to breakdown both the notion of taboo topics and "telling your business." However, I believe that we all owe it to those around us to challenge their perspectives and to hold them accountable for their actions.
Often times when we have chats with our sisters, and they say something outlandish as hell, we uncomfortably chuckle and allow for them to not only keep that perspective, but we also give them the space to then continue passing along that narrative since they believe its correct. Through this journey of self-actualization, one thing I've learned is that there is far too much power in the tongue, for us to allow dangerous rhetoric to be spewed.
I often take the devil's advocate approach, while challenging them to see it from a different vantage point. Most people take in information, and analyze it from their own lens instead of trying to understand it from the point of the person it affects directly. Meaning that I can't possibly place the way that I would think in a certain situation onto someone else.
Approach here is always important, because harsh truths can hit hard. Ask them if they've considered it from a different angle? This is a moment for us to act as their clarity as their weigh out decisions, thoughts and ideas.
We must hold each other accountable for our actions. While I understand that we have different friends for different things - your shit talk girls, your go out girls, your day ones and so one - meaning that you have a different relationship with each of them, so conversations like these may not arise.
However, pull their hoe card, call them out on their shit when they're in the wrong. We continue dangerous behaviors until we either get called out by someone else, or actualize that they are wrong ourselves.
For example, lets dig into this miserable ass petty culture. I'm sure we all have that one friend who wears petty as a lifestyle, because deep down inside she is miserable. Hold her accountable! Maybe its worth helping her dig to the bottom of why she truly feels the need to be so petty, or why she's so miserable. Or it could be as simple as saying, "you know you're dead ass wrong for that right?" Check her and let her know that you peeped that shit, and won't let it slide.
Or when we have friends who scream Black Lives Matter but are homophobic, neglecting that intersectionality. This is what I mean by the dangers of speech, because we can't assume that all are thoughtful enough to weigh out the silly shit they just heard.
Often times, our girls are literally all we got and vice versa. As much as they are a reflection of us, we are a reflection of them and have to use our light to shine down a different path, but this can only happen if we decide to spread that light by challenging their perspectives and holding them accountable.