She had probably never looked a black man in the face, let alone had a conversation with him, and now one was in her daughter’s home, dating her granddaughter.
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As a Collaborative Law professional, I assist couples in their effort to divorce with dignity and place the needs of their children first.
As a C0-Parenting Facilitator or Parent Coordinator I work with divorced or separated parents to successfully navigate the transition toward working together as co-parenting partners in the best interests of their children, which can be a very challenging task when also managing the painful end of a romantic relationship.
Instead my grandmother looked me in the eye, with Justin standing behind me, and said, “Tell that guy I said goodbye.”I had never seen my loving, hardworking, and wonderful grandma be so hurtful and so racist. After they left I took Justin on a ride to get out of the house.
I’ll never forget what he said as we drove around town: “Racism is never surprising but always disappointing.”Justin made me understand that someone like my grandma only saw black men depicted on television in situations involving guns, rape, and violence—situations that perpetuate racist stereotypes against black people in general and black men in particular.
While Justin offered so much of himself through our conversations, I answered his probing questions with this: “If I know you in six months, I’ll tell you.”So how did I finally know he was the one worth putting myself out there for? Now, I should probably mention that Justin is black, and that I didn’t grow up around many black people.
The sum total of what I learned about African American culture in school was Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and the Underground Railroad.
But thanks to Justin’s constant communication, I envisioned a marriage that was more than just two people loving each other.
And now we have that marriage: a partnership dedicated to building something bigger than ourselves.
My clinical areas of specialization include; dating and cohabiting relationships, marriage, separation, divorce, remarriage, and blended family therapy.