*Hear* Rihanna. *Hear* me.

Let me be real on this one…I say ‘let me be real’ but I don’t even know how real I’m actually brave enough to be. I imagine Robin might have wondered the same thing…

I’m glad that even if for a minute, people were thinking about our silent suffering…the crippling pain that we live with every. single. solitary. day. We are the women who have seen those soul-less eyes. We are the women who couldn’t believe it was happening, and wondered when it would stop. We are the women who didn’t know what to do, didn’t know where to turn, didn’t want anyone to know; were embarrassed, humiliated. broken. weakened. We are the women who rationalized. Played it down. Blamed ourselves. And we can’t forget. It replays itself in our minds. and again. and again. and again. And when we think we have forgotten, when we least expect and want it, it plays again. We are your sisters. We are your daughters. We are your cousins, nieces. We are your best friends. We are your bosses. your colleagues. We sit next to you in class. across from you on the train. in the cubicle to your left. You know so many of us. Yet many of you do not know. How can you? We are silenced. even when we claw ourselves to the surface enough to speak, we are silenced. Many of you will not hear. It is lost in the noise…

I am a Caribbean woman. a Barbadian woman. and these titles mean many many things. and some of them are not pretty. My brothers are the ones who have hurt me the most. It’s something I struggle with. I love West Indian men. I hate West Indian men. It’s difficult to separate the wheat from the tares sometimes, especially within a culture that continues to support male dominance, continues to foster our victimization…

Yet we can emancipate ourselves from this slavery. We can free our minds. There is a balm in Gilead. But it would help us, so so much, if you would hear us when we speak. It might be difficult in Rihanna’s case to listen past the celebrity, listen past the publicity, listen past the image, listen past doubts of sincerity, but please. Hear her. Hear your sister, your friend, your boss, your neighbor, your colleague. Hear me.

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4 responses to “*Hear* Rihanna. *Hear* me.

  • Reynold

    I know what you mean… tonight I carried my cousins (girls) down the road, and when I was going back one asked me, “You frighten to go back up de road by youself?” And I was joking around saying “yeah, I sooo scared” when her friend said, “He is a man!… not a woman!”

    Got me thinking about how even something as simple as walking the road at night is a big issue for a woman, just because she is a woman! Additional fear that a man may not even contemplate, but a woman cannot ignore.

  • kboug

    It is all men…but truly the West Indian Culture/West Indian Men are still very slow in progression. You can’t blame them..their conditions are different…and no one really knows how to correct something as subtle as how they bring up their men. This interview with Rihanna may have finally opened Americans eyes to a culture so vibrant that it hides the ugliness underneath.

  • JOY

    Powerful interview – no whimpy weepy nonsense. Get up and move on and it look to me like she get in a few lashes too. Keep it moving girl! Loved it

  • datdiva23

    Blah blah blah She in fact did state on 20/20 If she did in fact hit chris he still had no right to hit her BACk. I think she drove him to hit her by no means am I taking his side i saw my mother get beaten up by my father for much less but my mother wasnt doing dumb ass shit to prevoke a man who came from a broken home. I don’t believe rihanna she is not a true victim Like other women are you know you can see it in her eyes. Idk I just dont buy her story I have seen the look on the womens faces who have been beaten time and time again and hers was nothing like that she went over to the darkside for a reason take a deeper loook people she is not a at all what she appears to be

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