Lane Bryant

Why Can’t African-American Women Be More Supportive?

Why Can’t African-American Women Be More Supportive?

On last Sunday, we witnessed the support of African-American actresses as Taraji P. Henson took on the role of the head cheerleader at the 2015 Emmy awards. Regina King, Uzo Aduba, and last but not least, Viola Davis took home awards for their outstanding work in various dramatic roles. As a fan of Orange is the New Black, American Crime, and How to Get Away with Murder, I felt all of these actresses deserved the awards they received. And let’s not forget the commercial with Mary J. Blige, Kerry Washington, and Taraji P. Henson for Apple music that added the icing on the cake. The commercial reminded me of the times I would hang with my friends and listen to my boom box. It was great to see African-American women being supportive of each other.

Photo Credit: Fox/Gettys Images

Photo Credit: Fox/Getty Images

The support these women gave each other made my heart smile. However, I’m writing about real life and the lack of sisterhood and support that everyday women like myself receive. I remember having a conversation with a friend of mine when she decided to relocate to another city. I remember us speaking about women and how it’s hard to cultivate meaningful friendships and meet new people; why is that? Every time I’ve met an African-American woman she has either been mean, really competitive, or just plain rude. What happened to the time when we supported each other and yelled “You Go Girl”!

Photo Credit: Shades of Color Frank Morrison

Photo Credit: Shades of Color Frank Morrison

I don’t want anyone to think that I’m some moral chick standing on a soapbox because I’m not. There were times when I had to work on myself. I had to learn to be a little kinder, a little nicer, a better listener, and more supportive.

When we need support, or we’re struggling with various issues; the first thing some of us do is pass judgement. We take the opportunity to throw salt on an already open wound. There are women who hustle and grind every day that need encouragement. What is wrong with us that we can’t say you can do it, good job, or congratulations. I’ve seen so many posts on social media from women who join Facebooks groups because they need someone to say, things will work out, and instead they were met with harsh criticism and hatred.  We can come together on social media when something happens that affects our race, but in reality, we can hardly stand each other.We are much stronger united!

I’ll take this opportunity to tell my readers, you can do it, stay encouraged, you look great, you don’t have to put up with bullshit, I like your new outfit, your hair looks great, job well done, congratulations, you rock, you’re amazing, things will work out, love yourself first, I got your back, and I appreciate you!
Someone once told me that being nice gets you no where. What do you think?

Please share your thoughts and experiences.

14 Responses to “Why Can’t African-American Women Be More Supportive?”

  1. Stacie says:

    It’s such a struggle to find support among our own kind. I’m not sure what it is. I love my fellow sistahs and I definitely believe that being kind is the easiest way to a person’s heart. My mamma always said to get friends you have to be friendly.

    • shauntee says:

      Hi Stacie, thank you for your experience. I do believe that you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar. That’s what my grandmother told me 🙂

  2. I’m sorry to hear about your experiences with other women of color. Fortunately, I’ve been blessed to be surrounded with many supportive and positive women. I feel like we as women have to be more supportive to one another and stop repeating the negative statements and only speak positivity. It’s the only way in my opinion we’ll start to see change.

    • shauntee says:

      I agree! I have a very small circle of friends who are supportive. I also find that removing negativity out of your life makes all the difference. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  3. It’s unfortunate that some women have not been able to find support in other women…i personally have a very small circle and we don’t see each other all the time but when the need is there, we have each others back.

    • Shauntee says:

      I also have a very small circle of friends who I know has my back if needed. It is unfortunate, we would be more powerful. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. I agree with you. Sometimes it’s hard to find people who will support you. I have a super small circle who I can count on but I always make sure to reach out as far as I can to support others. Taraji is such a shining example of women supporting women.

    • shauntee says:

      Hi Vashti,
      Thank you for sharing your viewpoint. I find that the older I get the less people I need in my circle. I do try my best to support others and network.

  5. I always hear that about women and the truth of the matter is that is NOT my story. I have an amazing circle of women, several different circles and we share, we care and we cheer one another on. I’ve had women I know and don’t know support me and I appreciate them for it. With and without me asking I appreciate them for it. I support many with and without me asking.

    • shauntee says:

      Excellent, I’m glad you have a very supportive circle. I’ve found the various Facebook groups to be a great source of support. Thanks for stopping by.

  6. I guess I’m blessed in the fact that this has never really been my story. Yes I’ve dealt with petty women, but for the most part, every woman of color in my circle cheers me on every single day. I think what we saw between Taraji and Viola was representative of what the media DOESN’T show us, but what actually happens pretty regularly. I was almost in tears because I just met another blogger at an event a couple of weeks ago, and she came out to support my walk in DC this past weekend. But this is my norm, and I’m grateful for it all. I think when we also focus on the energy we put out, the good will always come back to us 🙂

    • shauntee says:

      Hi Christine,
      That’s awesome!!!! I have a few friends in my circle who are very supportive. I’m mainly referring to new people I meet in my everyday corporate America job. I agree the media doesn’t show African American women supporting each other. I believe the energy we put out does play apart of how people treat us, however I think our environment plays apart as well. Thank you for sharing your view.

  7. Joanna says:

    I think it is the insecure women that are the non supporters. If you know the value of work you put out there, no matter what it is, SOMEONE is going to recognize and appreciate it. We all have enough room to win.

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