Updated: Oct 10, 2019
“IT'S OK TO NOT BE OK” I saw this floating around on social media and I immediately thought of my self. Is it really ok to not be ok when you’re black and female in America? I could say the same about our men but let’s focus on the ladies here. I can think back to my grandmother, mother, aunts, cousins and so forth always being “ok” despite the poverty, single parent hood, limited education, and a slew of other barriers that didn’t stop them from making shit happen. We have literally been conditioned to see our women being “ok”. What I know now as an adult, black female, is that life is hard AF. Most of the time, I’m NOT OK, but because I was never able to see what that looks like, I’ve been conditioned to think that what I’m feeling can’t be normal. Maybe I’m not Christian enough or maybe I’m not as great as I thought I was because if I was I wouldn’t be this ”not ok” this often, right?? The reality is because of post traumatic slave syndrome we have been conditioned to be strong as a form of protection. It’s a blessing and curse. A blessing because it helps us remain resilient and successful despite the cards we are dealt. A curse because it prevents us from seeking the help that we may desperately need.
I want to give you three tips to help if you find yourself feeling "Not Ok" more often than not.
1. You don’t have to be the “strong one” all the time (ask for help, set healthy boundaries, practice self care). 2. Recognize the barriers you may have for seeking help (stigma, trust, money, time). 3. Know your options for seeking a trained mental health provider if needed (Therapy for Black Girls, Psychology Today, calling your insurance provider, asking a trusted friend or family member who has sought help in the past).