Story about games and giving...

Whenever I have not-so-pleasant experiences in life, I use them as a learning opportunity to a) not repeat the unpleasant behaviour towards others; and, b) teach my niece and nephew how not to be assholes

Recently, I experienced difficult instances of microaggression, othering, and racism. So I spoke to my niece and nephew and told them that some people were mean to me and how it made me very sad and helpless. I told them I wanted them to remember to never be mean to anyone. And if someone was being mean to them or someone else, that they needed to stand up to the mean person and fight for themselves/others. 

My nephew - who is only 4 - thought for a while and asked me if there was someone else who could have addressed the mean people and told them to be less mean. When I said no, he asked why I didn't call the police to talk to the mean people. I explained to him that we can't call the police for every little thing that happens in life. He didn't agree with me but said yes, so as to not further upset his bua {aunt in hindi}.  

What he made me realize though is that if your power does not work, then reach out to someone else who has more power than you to fix the issues. If that doesn't work, reach out to someone even more powerful. What took me literally 48 hours to articulate, took this 4-year old only 5 minutes! He knew that I didn't have the power to fix things but there was someone else who had the power to fix it and I should have just kept going up the power hierarchy to fix the situation. 

Unfortunately, the power hierarchy system didn't work for me, as it should have. I was instead blamed - as women of colour often get blamed - for the challenges I experienced and the perpetuators were rewarded.  

Well, this is the exact reason I'm studying what power and privilege mean! And how we can use our power to create a belonging environment.

Have you experienced something similar? How did you feel? Were you even able to react, articulate, understand what you had just experienced? Share your experiences with others. Write about them. Speak about them. If you don't, we will continue to perpetuate bad behaviour and suffer for it!