What Mama Couldn't Tell Us About Love: Healing the Emotional Legacy of Racism by Celebrating Our Light

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9780060930790: What Mama Couldn't Tell Us About Love: Healing the Emotional Legacy of Racism by Celebrating Our Light

In this provocative rethinking of the African American woman's experience, Brenda Lane Richardson and Dr. Brenda Wade ask their black American sisters to consider this question: "What lessons about love and intimacy were passed down from your foremothers to you?" By exploring the emotional legacy shared by all African American women whose ancestors were enslaved, the authors examine the impact of this history on romantic relationships between today's black women and men—and reveal how the power of inherited beliefs can both heal and strengthen these bonds.

This remarkably uplifting book will show you how to move toward the emotional freedom you seek. It offers spiritual wisdom from well-known African Americans, ways of enhancing the coping skills and strengths your forebears harnessed to help them survive, and the certainty that emotional emancipation is your birthright. Mama may not have told you all this in so many words—but there is no doubt that she would want you to use the positive messages inherent in the African American experience to create a better life.

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Review:

Among the most damaging and unexplored legacies of the transatlantic slave trade are the negative, afrophobic mores and myths that have devastated black male/female relationships. This book by clinical psychologist and Essence magazine contributor Dr. Brenda Wade and coauthor Brenda Lane Richardson examines many of the so-called scarcity beliefs, such as: "There are no good men out there"; "Any man will cheat if he's tempted"; "I'll always be alone"; and so on. What the authors advocate is not only an acceptance of historical burdens but the willingness to express grief and delve into the deep, spiritual wells of one's ancestors. "The only way we can attain freedom," they write, "is by bringing our past into the light of understanding. What's required is a different sort of liberation movement, one that allows us to work through the shame and guilt that keeps us from embracing ourselves." Richardson and Wade offer several life-enhancing beliefs central to self-healing--"God loves me"; "I can make something out of nothing"; "I can make a way when there seems to be no way"; and "My heart will guide me if I listen." An enjoyable and uplifting reading experience, What Mama Couldn't Tell Us About Love offers words of wisdom that women of all hues can use. --Eugene Holley Jr.

About the Author:

Brenda Lane Richardson, the author of Chesapeake Song, is an award-winning journalist and a noted public speaker.

Essence colmnist Dr. Brenda Wade is a clinical psychologist, a well-known television personality, and a popular public speaker who lectures widely across the country.



Dr. Brenda Wade is a clinical psychologist, the author of four books, and a frequent guest on Oprah, The Today Show, and other talk shows, news programs, and specials. She lives and practices in San Francisco, California.

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