The Other Side of The Color Complex

Posted by on Jul 16, 2012

As she continued, I began to wonder why I had let society influence me into thinking that light-skinned women were the happiest people in the planet? It wasn’t until I heard her perspective that I began to understand that the color complex effects both sides of the spectrum in a negative way.

And my sister’s not the only one. “I have never liked being light, I am always mistaken for being Caucasian,” says Valerie, a 24 year-old law student from Detroit. “All my life I have been praised for looking like a race that I am not, and I get the most shocking reactions when I tell people I am 100% African-American. I have always had a desire to look ‘Blacker,” she says.

On one side of the divide, you have dark-skinned women who are made to feel less-than-beautiful, inferior and rejected because of their complexion and the other side reveals women who are presumed to be stuck up and have to deal with people questioning their “blackness” because they have a lighter skin tone.

Let’s move on once and for all. Whether you are light or dark-skinned, society will always give you a reason to wish you were something that you are not. We are living in a society where darker women aren’t light enough and light skinned women aren’t dark enough. It’s time for us to rise above these prejudices and start appreciating the diversity of our beauty instead of attacking each other and perpetuating the divide.

Have you ever experienced or witnessed the other side of the color complex?

-Julissa Escobosa

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