Not Black Enough

Al Humduillah, I grew up and started speaking up for myself. As a child, I was sarcastic and passive-aggressive. As I talk to my younger brother about his middle school experience, I can’t help but sit back and reflect on my utterly different experience.

I don’t have too many fond memories of middle school. One memory sticking out is when I had a substitute teacher in music. It was an awkward adjustment period in my life. Wearing the hijab and a modest uniform did not help the situation either.

He was an older Black American man, really laid back, and most students loved him. He was leading a discussion about the music our parents play in the car. So everyone is participating and having fun, cracking jokes. I attempt to participate, but he cuts me off before I get a complete sentence. Informing me that I’m foreign and my people don’t listen to regular music.

I was too shy and quiet to speak up and say, “no, I’m black. I am just Muslim”. At that point, I remember feeling so embarrassed and not belonging anywhere. I desperately wanted to blend in and not always stick out as different. Now I realize how idiotic and toxic the statement indeed was.

Instead of embracing me and taking the opportunity to potentially learn about a new culture, he just shot me down because I didn’t appear “black enough .” The saddest part is he’s not the only person who’s made me feel that way. Even though I grew up in a black community, I still was made to feel like a minority amongst my own people.


  1. Thank you for sharing about being made to feel that you weren’t black enough. The teacher I believe was speaking from ignorance what he didn’t understand and to give a loud message to the others in the class that heard him that it was ok to make you feel “different”. I had a horrible middle school experience as well but praise God for not allowing those experience to define who I am today. Thank you for sharing I really enjoy reading it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sorry to hear you had to experience this it must have been very difficult. I didn’t think about this before but I think because being black is so closely tied to Christianity, people who are from differing faiths (not so much atheists etc) aren’t necessarily viewed as black in the same way. I hope this is changing because your blackness is valid and should never have to be proved. 💜

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Unquestionably believe that which you said. Your favorite justification seemed to be on the net the easiest thing to be aware of. I say to you, I certainly get annoyed while people consider worries that they plainly do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and also defined out the whole thing without having side effect , people can take a signal. Will likely be back to get more. Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

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