Stickin' To, Watchin' Over, and Gettin' With: An African American Parent's Guide to Discipline

By Howard C. Stevenson; Gwendolyn Davis et al. | Go to book overview

5
When Black Children Fly,
the World Retaliates

Self'Discipline for the Teenager

Parenting is a lifelong acquaintance with helplessness.

My mother grew up in north Philadelphia, and my father grew up in southern Oelaware. Both were African American, but their cultures were as different as New York City is from Beirut. I grew up in a multicultural household. One major difference was in their styles of managing racial conflict. My father's style was much more laid back and didn't focus on race as a conflict of importance. He usually wanted to avoid conflicts, believing God would take care of racist people in the end. My mother was more challenging, like Malcolm X, or at least the caricature of him. She would not let White people treat her any οΐ way without a fight. And if 1, my brother, or sister was treated unfairly, there would be war. No fists, but when she got through telling them about themselves and their families, and the injustices of racism in the world, the racist teacher, policeman, or candlestick maker would feel knocked down to the ground. All that would be needed was for someone to come and take the bodies away. Then she would pray for them.

Howard Stevenson

Throughout this chapter we will combine the three ingredients of effective discipline because as adolescents develop, parents are often providing affection, protection, and conection in the same

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