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How being called ugly at the age of 7 changed my life

September 11, 2017

I remember it like it was yesterday…..

I was in Belk with my mom and she was trying on clothes in the mirror. I was sitting outside the dressing room and looking at the big mirror that people could walk to if they wanted another view. I was dancing and prancing in the mirror and I remember a lady coming over to me saying…Girl stop looking in the mirror you will never be pretty. You are so dark and that mirror won’t make you light. My mom came out and said something to the lady but I don’t even remember what my mom said…all I remember was that those words stuck with me. I was called ugly a few more times after that then by the age of 12 I started liking my first guy. He was so cute! I thought he was the finest thing walking. I use to always follow him around and one day he told me that no guy would ever want me because I am dark-skin. Guys only had sex with dark-skinned girls and married the pretty light skinned girls. I was devastated and cried all the way home that night. I remember my own mother telling me a few times to stay out of the sun because the darker I get the less anyone would find me attractive. I need to stay on the lighter side of brown. I don’t think my mom meant to be mean I think she just called it how she saw it because back then men seemed to only want the pretty girls and I think my mom (who got divorced because my dad fell for a lighter skinned girl) felt that dark girls didn’t stand a chance. I needed to stay inside and out of the sun so that I could get a man.

The first time I was ever called pretty was when I was 19 it was a guy that I use to mess with in college. It was the first time in my life that someone called me beautiful. I didn’t believe him though because as I said…I grew up being called everything in the book so when he said it I was like oh he just wants sex….he doesn’t mean it. I have been called ugly, black as the ace of spade, gap teeth girl, elephant, hippo, monkey, ape looking girl (this one was said several times to me) etc. Being called all those names stuck with me because I started to believe what everyone was saying. You know how sometimes you think if everyone is saying it, it must be true.

Over the years occasionally I would get compliments like you are cute for a dark girl, or well I have seen someone uglier than you so at least you aren’t the ugliest. Growing up in today’s world dark-skinned girls aren’t considered the best looking. By societies standard most men marry the pretty girls with all the makeup. They always leave their dark-skinned wives (why even marry us in the first place if we aren’t your type) to go with the pretty light girl with the makeup and big ass. I have seen a better example of men marrying darker girls like me but it’s not a whole lot of that going around. I am now in my mid 30’s and being ugly stuck with me until I was about 32. Below is the link to find out how I finally found out that beauty is only skin deep. It took me until my 30’s to get to this level and sometimes I still don’t feel beautiful but I feel way better about myself than what I did a few years ago.

Link to my interview you can find it here!

Thank you to Dove for having me speak my mind and for having me tell my story about how beauty affects me. I hope that you learn something from my story and I hope that you know that everyone is beautiful!

  • Reply
    robin rue
    September 11, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    You are amazing and thank you for sharing your story. I have a similar one to you and it stinks when kids are so mean.

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    Alli Smith
    September 11, 2017 at 1:02 pm

    I just can’t believe people! Who tells someone that they are ugly? Who cares what color someone’s skin is? There are too many adult bullies out there that need to get a life. So glad you didn’t let those idiots hold you back. You are beautiful!

  • Reply
    valmg @ Mom Knows It All
    September 11, 2017 at 1:30 pm

    I was called all sorts of unflattering and mean names as a child, I was bullied for years. I didn’t learn to like myself until I was into my 20s.

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    September 11, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    You are beautiful girl, and don’t let others tell you otherwise.

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    September 11, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    You are beautiful Kita, I can remember finding your blog years ago and you radiated beauty to me inside and out. Thanks for sharing your story.

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    September 11, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    I am so so sorry that happened to you when you were a child. No one has the right to say anything like that to anybody but much less a child. I am glad that you are a stronger woman now and I pray this will not happen in the future.

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    Sarah Bailey
    September 11, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story, it is amazing how those little things can really stick with you and how they can have such an impact on your life.

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    Amber Myers
    September 11, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story. I’m so sorry you were called ugly–that is so cruel, but I am glad that it at least turned you into a stronger woman.

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    September 11, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    You’re beautiful and I absolutely love your complexion! I love that our kids have more representation of beauty that comes in all shades, hair textures etc. than we did. These days kids are celebrating their melanin and natural hair and I love that!

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    Shannon Graham
    September 11, 2017 at 7:15 pm

    People are just plain stupid and mean. I don’t know how anyone could say something like that especially to a little girl. I have often found that this comes from bitterness inside themselves and usually has nothing to do with the person they’re being rude to. You’re a gorgeous woman inside and out!

  • Reply
    September 11, 2017 at 8:24 pm

    Bad enough coming from children, but really adults. You at such a young age to be told something like that. I know it hurts but try to ignore them and know how beautiful you really are.

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    Melanie Smith
    September 11, 2017 at 9:32 pm

    The people that said that to you are you just jerks! You are a beautiful woman and it doesn’t care the color of your skin!

  • Reply
    September 12, 2017 at 12:04 am

    I can relate with your experience. I have two sisters, and everything they are, I am not. They are tall, slim and pretty. I am short, stocky and average looking. When we were young, people would ask me if I was my sisters’ sister and when I said yes, they’d say, “Oh really?” and they’d have that scrutinizing look on their faces. I wish people would just look beyond physical features and skin color. I am happy you did not let those nasty comment affect you. You are beautiful. All of us are beautiful. God did not create ugly people, that’s for sure.

  • Reply
    Jenn @ EngineerMommy
    September 12, 2017 at 12:11 am

    I’m sorry you went through that as a kid. You are beautiful and don’t let anyone put you down ever again.

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    Liz Mays
    September 12, 2017 at 1:57 am

    People can be so cruel! I’m glad you had the opportunity to share your story in the interview! This podcast sounds pretty interesting!

  • Reply
    September 12, 2017 at 2:26 am

    How heartbreaking that at the age of 7 someone you don’t even know called you ugly. You are amazing for sharing and I think you are beautiful!

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    Mimi Green
    September 12, 2017 at 3:30 am

    A lot of times adults are worse than kids. Having such negativity place on you at a fool.

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    September 12, 2017 at 9:45 am

    I can’t even imagine what it must have been like as a kid hearing that. You’re beautiful my dear and no one can take that away from you. Words hurt for sure but don’t let them control your inside and outer beauty

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    Debra Hawkins
    September 12, 2017 at 7:02 pm

    What the heck is wrong with people?! I want to go back and time and yell at these people. You are amazing!

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    Rose Cottrill
    September 12, 2017 at 8:54 pm

    That was so mean and very insensitive. Anyone that can do that to a little girl or to anybody is heartless.

  • Reply
    September 12, 2017 at 9:27 pm

    Being a kid can be so tough.. and so can being an adult. People are just so awful to each other! I was called names relentlessly and had such a hard time in school. I am glad I am beyond that, but even now, people are judgey. I have learned just not to care what others think!

  • Reply
    Sandy N Vyjay
    September 13, 2017 at 8:30 am

    Some people are so insensitive, and what is the definition of pretty? Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. Also it comes from within. The skin and bone, the exterior cage that is the body will perish one day.

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    Sheena Steward
    September 13, 2017 at 1:37 pm

    WOW!!! People can be so cruel. I’m sorry people said those hurtful things to you. Skin tone doesn’t determine beauty. You’re beautiful for telling your authentic story. ❤

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    September 13, 2017 at 7:25 pm

    This definitely left me with my mouth opened, I mean wide-opened. People can be so cruel. I’m happy that you are at a place in life to share your story to help others.

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    September 13, 2017 at 10:09 pm

    I know that what you are saying is true, people treat darker skinned women differently. As a child tho– I would sit in the sun and hope my skin would be kissed by the sun. I guess I just grew up in a different kind of space. I grew up thinking the darker skin women were the most beautiful.

  • Reply
    September 14, 2017 at 11:55 pm

    People can be so cruel even at a young age. I’ve always been a girl with weight on her and people constantly said things about my weight and honestly to this day it still bothers me. I was even told by a close friend that I wouldn’t find a husband until I lose some weight. Its crazy the stuff that people think is okay to say even if they feel like it’s coming from a place of love, they don’t think how the other person will feel!

  • Reply
    September 15, 2017 at 4:34 am

    First of all, I’m glad that you know that you are beautiful. Second of all, it is sad that kids and adults can be so cruel. You never know how it will affect someone. I don’t even think people give thought to how they make the other person feel. It’s all very sad.

  • Reply
    September 15, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Wow, thanks for sharing your story, and I’m sorry you had to go through that! You are beautiful on the inside and the outside, because God made you that way, always remember that if you’re ever feeling down on yourself. 🙂

  • Reply
    September 15, 2017 at 1:42 pm

    This breaks my heart how stupid and cruel people are. I am so upset that a stranger, a grown woman would go up to a 7 year old and crush her self esteem. I am so sorry you went through that. I hate society thing light is right, because it isnt all the time. I think rich melaninated skin is beautiful and we as black people have to ignore the people who doesnt think so because at the end of the day Black women are alway setting trends. Our features shouldnt only be celebrated if its on a light/white skin. I am happy you are falling in love with yourself, but please dont let people bring out the 7 yr old girl in you again. They are wrong!

  • Reply
    Felecia Monique
    September 15, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    This definitely touched me. Being short and dark skin as a kid caused me to get teased beyond belief. The older I got the more I realized my skin wasn’t my problem it was THERE’S. but it still hurts even to this day when ppl make a joke. It’s just stupid at this point.

  • Reply
    September 15, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    This broke my heart. I can’t believe some grown person would tell you such negative things at 7 years old. It’s interesting how those things stick with us. I remember being told that I have a big nose when I was 9 and to this day I still gets to me. I’m so happy that you are learning to love your beauty.

  • Reply
    Tiffany H.
    September 15, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    People are so mean. It sucks that an adult that doesn’t even know you would you say something so harmful to you. I’m glad your mother said something to you but I’m sorry that your mom also said hurtful things as well. I think hurt people hurt others. I’m so glad you are moving forward and starting to recognize your own beauty and remember beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  • Reply
    September 18, 2017 at 11:45 pm

    I’m sorry you had to experience this as a child. However, thankfully, you were able to move forward. Over the year’s I’ve been called everything over the years from ugly, stuck up, high siddy, etc. Words sting but in the end, I know it means I’m doing something right. However, as a child the pain is unimaginable.

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