I’ve been sitting on this letter for a couple of weeks because I had to meditate on what I wanted to say to y’all. I reached out to a couple of men I know and I asked them a simple question, “Do you love yourself”. Ideally, I thought for sure many of them were going to say that they did, but the honesty I received was mind blowing. It made me dive into the work I know I was set out to do. It made my decisions that more clear. My path was lit and I knew all I had to do was to continue on.
Here it is:
I want to say thank you. My relationship with men have been interesting to say the least. I think I’ve learned too much from the men in family that benefitted me, but also kept my eyes wide open to all the bullshit I would encounter. I don’t want to say trained, but I was trained not to put up with the bullshit. I was trained to approach situations just like YOU. With that being said, I want to say its ok to let go. I did. I know, I’m a female and the expectation of me is to be emotional and expressive, but you are allowed too. Let go of what is expected of you and just be you. There are too many of y’all trying to be who society wants you to be. I think I’ve played a part in wanting men to live up to societies standards because my own conditioned thoughts. I had a lot of unlearning to do to realized that there are things that no longer serve me and the well being of my loved ones.
Your continued strength in the face of a world that wants to continue to break you down is phenomenal. I’ve seen so many of you rise above the bullshit and that’s commendable. I’m here to lend an ear, a hand, and give a hug to all of you that need it. There is so much pressure put on all men, but specifically black men. Not only are conditioned black women placing these pressures on you, but everyone else as well. The stereotypes that society expects you to live up to, but also penalizes you for is one of the many reason why I am saying thank you. Be you. In every way, be you.
To the men/boys still out there fighting for your own mind… keep going. I’m here for all of you. None of us are perfect. Some of you can’t break free from the box that they’ve put in, but keep fighting, keep grinding, and you’ll laugh about the journey later.
I’m sending my love, my hugs, and strength to you all the men out there fighting to be better. I pray for you nothing but love, light, and a clear mind to do and be who you are.
Love your sis,