Helping My Fair-Skinned Son Embrace His Blackness

ASHLEY SEIL SMITH | The Atlantic

Editor’s Note: This article is part of Parenting in an Uncertain Age, a series about the experience of raising children in a time of great change.

I recently confessed to my son that I would have to miss back-to-school night for a work trip. Most parents can expect one of two reactions from their children to this news: relief or a guilt trip. My son’s response was of the second variety, but with a particular twist. “You can’t miss back-to-school night!” he said. “How else will my new teachers know I’m black?”

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