I would like to make something clear: monoracial people of color are just as valid as multiracial people of color. Therefore, this piece is not to pit one group of people against another group of people.
Another fantastic thing to love about Mixed Remixed is how inclusive they are to various facets of identity, and, yes, that means people who identify as one race are just as welcome to the dialogue often presented.
This piece is to simply let you in on a perspective on content that you haven’t thought of before.
So, without further ado:
I have been blessed to write on platforms such as Mixed Remixed and The Tempest about my identity, and the many parts of my identity. Because I have that freedom, I have written about pieces where I mostly identified as mixed, and where I mostly identified as black.
There is one particular piece that made me realize about how more people are willing to give their readership to topics on monoracial identity rather than multiracial identity.
I wrote a piece about depression, the black community, and how, as a black person, it shouldn’t be taboo for me to talk about my experiences with anxiety and depression anymore. As a black person, I am allowed to view therapy just as valid as prayer and other spiritual practices.
There have been experiences where my mixed race identity played a role in my depression, such as seeking the best friendship groups for me without being deemed as betraying specific racial groups by doing so, or trying to figure out whether or not it was even okay for a generationally mixed person to identify as mixed.
However, white family members have been more open to talk about depression, although there have been times where it was popular to use euphemisms for depression such as “tired” or “sick,” more so than my black family members.
I didn’t have the courage to talk about my depression with my black family members growing up, because a lot of my black family members didn’t believe mental health issues were real, and they didn’t believe mental health professionals could be trusted.
It made sense for me to put that particular piece in a context about my blackness and the black community.
And I’m glad that I was placed in a position to publish that piece where I knew people would read it, and that enough people read it so that more conversations about people of color, mental health, and religion, can be had.
This piece crashed The Tempest’s site three times, I have received dozens of tweets and messages of great feedback about it, and an editor from The Huffington Post even reached out to me.
However, I can’t help but think that if it were a piece that focused mostly on mixed race identity and depression, people wouldn’t have been as receptive.
This piece, and my piece on being black in a predominantly white missions culture, has more page views than any of my other pieces on mixed race identity combined. I had even mentioned being mixed race and being depressed in other pieces.
When I pitched a piece about mixed race identity to The Huffington Post, the same people who reached out to me about my piece about being black and having depression, before reaching out to The Tempest, they never got back to me.
I am very proud of myself for writing and publishing my piece about depression. It needed to be written, and it needed to be read. It’s just interesting to me that certain things about it haven’t been acknowledged.
With more and more people identifying as multiracial, more experiences will be documented, more people will be willing to speak up, and more topics will come to the surface when it comes to multiracial experiences. It’s just going to take forever to get to that point, and as hard as I try, patience is still not one of my strongest virtues when it comes to things like that.
Nevertheless, I’m not just going to write on one topic about myself, and I’m not going to try to force certain topics about myself out of myself either. It doesn’t make my writing genuine, and it doesn’t make my writing as great as it can be.
And I still want to question and analyze why certain topics have more readership and attention than others. I still want to know what people are willing and unwilling to talk about.
I’m certain the piece I have mentioned one too many times won’t be the last piece where I wonder about where people are.
Maya Williams, Mixed Remixed Blogger