August 14, 2023

Sometimes you're not meant to be part of the conversation

I was once reading a conversation started by a Black person about anti-Black hate crimes, and I thought it would be helpful to mention antisemitism and the hate crimes that Jews experience.

Why did I think that would be helpful? 🤷🏻

Maybe I thought Black people needed to know that Jews are also victims of violence? (Nope, they already know that.)

Maybe I thought I was offering solidarity? (I wasn't. I was making it about myself.)

Maybe I thought the conversation needed "different perspectives?" (It didn't. It was a conversation meant to educate and bring awareness about people's lived experiences, not to ask for different opinions.)

This was a huge learning experience for me, realizing that sometimes it's not actually about ME. Sometimes my opinion or perspective is not needed or relevant. 🤯

As a communication junkie and natural-born opinionated bigmouth, I have spent my life inserting myself into conversations that were not meant for me. I tend to think my opinion is incredibly valuable and worthwhile and that everyone should hear it. 📢

Now, if I want to create awareness of antisemitism, I can make my own post. I can share my own resources. I don't need to hijack someone else's post about their lived experience and try to insert my own, when it's not relevant.

I'm unlearning some things. Just because people are talking publicly about something on social media doesn't mean they want to hear "my side of the story."

Sometimes a topic is open for discussion and different perspectives.

Sometimes there's only ONE SIDE and we need to just shut up and listen. 👂🏼

To clarify:

Men: learn from the experiences of women.

White women: learn from the experiences of Black women and WOC.

White people: learn from the experiences of Black people and POC.

Straight people: learn from the experiences of LGBTQ+ people.

Cisgender people: learn from the experiences of trans and nonbinary people.

Non-disabled people: learn from the experiences of people with disabilities.


Most of us have multiple identities, so listen to the ones you are not a part of!

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