Taraji P. Henson On The Term ‘Black Girl Magic’
Written by BET on October 9, 2020
Oscar-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson has an extended record of accomplishments on and off display, however she’s additionally serving to to create an area for deal with psychological well being, notably for Black girls.
On Thursday (October 8), the 50-year-old ‘Empire” star headlined Marie Claire’s Energy On summit which was held just about this yr because of the coronavirus pandemic. From her residence, Henson opened up about her personal experiences coping with melancholy and anxiousness.
When requested concerning the stigmas Black girls face round psychological well being, Henson, amongst different issues, mentioned the problematic facet of phrases which might be supposed to uplift Black girls, together with “robust Black lady” and “Black girl magic.”
“I perceive the notion behind or the that means behind ‘robust Black lady’ or ‘Black lady magic,’ I get it—it is to carry us up. However you need to watch out with that time period, as a result of what it does is it dehumanizes our ache,” she defined, in line with Marie Claire.
“You recognize, we’re not fairies. I can not rebound from ache, or the lack of my son to the regulation, and nothing’s being performed about it. I’ve to be quiet and forgive and be good and, , that is not honest to me. I’m human and I damage.”
Henson continued: “And I believe these phrases like which might be the explanation why Black girls die within the emergency room or giving beginning, as a result of we’re recognized to be robust. ‘Nicely, she will take care of that ache.’ You recognize, you do not perceive how different folks take that time period, and perhaps take it out of context. Or perhaps go, ‘Oh, they are surely robust. They do not want as a lot, , assist.’ You recognize, so you need to watch out with phrases like that. And so I am talking out about it. That is what I am doing.”
Taraji additionally opened up about her function in preventing in opposition to the stigma surrounding psychological well being within the Black neighborhood.
“I may sit up right here all day lengthy, and say, ‘I acquired a therapist, and it really works for me,’ however , folks, particularly within the Black neighborhood, we have now belief points in the case of the medical trade,” she mentioned.
“And particularly in the case of remedy, as a result of for us, we have now been instructed to remain robust. [We have been told] ‘In the event you endure from psychological sickness, that is a weak spot,’ in order that’s not one thing we embrace in our neighborhood.”
She added, “So for me, it was essential to place a face to it. And I really feel like our neighborhood actually trusts me. As an artist, they belief me in my work, , I do not promote numerous issues. So I believe there’s a specific amount of belief in the case of me in the neighborhood, and I felt like me sharing my story and my struggles, placing a face to it might assist free different folks to speak about it and make folks really feel like ‘wow, I am not alone.'”
Henson is the founding father of Boris Lawrence Henson Basis in honor of her father, who was a Vietnam veteran that confronted psychological well being points following his return from the battle.