It was on a Thursday…..
I am getting around the house blasting my music while I’m cleaning. My kids will be home in less than two hours from school so I’m moving quickly. If I can stop dancing my work would get done a lot quicker.
5000 steps later, dinner is cooked and the house is clean. Now in walks, my 8-year-old, talking my head off but that’s what she does every day. I call her mouth of the South. She is telling me how gross this boy is in her class. I mean he does talk with his mouth full of food so he isn’t the most charming gentlemen around. An hour later my son comes home feeling a little down because football season is over and he has more energy stored up then he knows what to do with. Another hour and a half rolls by and my daughter walks in from basketball practice with this odd look on her face.
Let me take a step back. My daughter was in 10th grade at this time and trying basketball out for the first time. She wanted to try something different and step outside her comfort zone. She has played soccer her whole life so dribbling with her hands would definitely be a step in a different direction. She, however, wasn’t too thrilled about her teammates or the coach but she is a team player and will always give 100%.
I digress, on this particular day, I knew something wasn’t right. But, I have learned to give my older two their space and wait for them to come to me. This technique usually works unless they take to long to come to me.
She said, mom, I think there is a situation that I need to talk to you about. Of course, I dropped everything and gave her my full attention. She proceeded to tell me that at last nights basketball game her coach told the team that he was proud of his white girl team for beating their opponents (majority-minority team). Mind you my daughter isn’t white nor can she be mistaken for white. There are also 2 other non-white players on the team. So what he means by white girl team is beyond me. But he wasn’t finished with his imprudent behavior. He told the girls that he thought they would be quicker and destroy us on the court. All the girls on the “white girl team” began to laugh and congratulate themselves.
Did I forget to mention that my daughter’s team has a history of calling black players nigga and making them keep to themselves? Purposely whispering with each other and excluding blacks or anyone nonwhite. The coach knows of the racism so to take part in it is infuriating.
I called the school and set up a meeting for the very next day. The coach tried to talk about the weather but the look on my face made him sit back down in his chair and stare at the ground. He tried to deny saying it but the truth was stacked up against him. All the girls had already confessed that he said it. My daughter held her ground and said that she wasn’t a liar and what would she have to gain by making this up.
After an hour of my fist hitting the table and me screaming tell the truth and my husband being the calm rational one that he is. The coach burst into tears and confessed that he said it and was ashamed that he had done so. My question to him was simply, “Why did you think the other team would crush our team, was it because they are black and did your comment about them looking fast have anything to do with them being black”?
While wiping the tears from his face he explained that he had seen them play before and they looked fast. Mind you, he had only seen 2 of the girls play.
Coach and I use that word loosely, looked at me while still crying and promised that he would apologize to the girls as he did to my daughter and would change his behavior.
Do I believe that he changed his behavior?
Very few people do. WE as a society have to stop looking at the color of someone’s skin and then assume that they lack or excel in athletic ability. This is something that a lot of us are guilty of. We might not verbalize it but we think it. However, if you are working with children and trying to have a unified team, you might need to have restraint and leave color and race out of the conversation.
The one element that I wanted the coach to take away from this meeting was UNITY. I put my kids in extracurricular activities to teach them how to work as a TEAM not divide the TEAM. I urge all coaches to teach athletes to rely on each other and learn how to operate like a well-oiled machine. Boasting over a win is one thing but shouting “I can’t believe that my white girl team won” is another and will not be tolerated.
You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored.
33 Replies to “My White Girl Team”
Wow. That is a powerful post, Belladonna. I’m saddened to read about these events, yet know, unfortunately, that they happen all the time. Zero tolerance, agreed, my dear friend. ❤️
Thank you Jeff! I chalk up to a learning lesson for both sides. This made my daughter aware of the real world and made her stronger. Hopefully the coach learned something as well.
Welcome, Belladonna.❤️ Always. Indeed.
I’m delighted to see that you took these steps and not just ignored this issue. More power to you! ♥
Thank you so much! I appreciate you saying so. Let’s me know I did the right thing.
Of course you did the right thing my dear friend! ♥♥
What the F??? This same thing happened with the same coach again??! Seems like only a year since he last pulled this 5h1t. Surely the school gotta sack him now! So sorry this has happened to her again!! 🙁 🙁
For some reason WP kicked this back to draft. I found that be strange. This coach was eventually fired from his position and the new head coach is top notch! As a matter of fact I spoke with him today because he wants my younger daughter to play on his feeder team.
Phew, what a relief! For a while I was blowing a fuse that lightening had struck twice and that the coach had not learned 🙁
Yaay, good news for youngest!!!! May congratulations!! 🙂
🤣🤣🤣🤣 Thank you my friend!!!!
Most welcome!!! 🙂
Strong post get up the strength!
Thank you sir!!!!! 🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾
Somehow I knew you’d roll up to that school and I’m so glad you did. I wrote a poem last night and posted it this morning that speaks about how racism is still alive and well and how many who are privileged and are not people of color still live in their bubble believing that’s a Fantasyland. It’s hurtful but thank God for resilience.
Thank you for going to bat on your daughter’s behalf.
Thank you so much!!! Yes it is still alive and kicking. And I’m ready to stand strong on the right side of history.
Going to read your poem now!
You’re most welcome. You take your time, it’ll be right there. Peace and blessings.
A powerful post. First time here and definitely not my last 🙂
Thank you Thank you!!!! I am beyond honored that you read this and decided to come back 🙏🏽
Belladonna, I read this post and in utter disgust because people have no idea what people who look like me have to go through practically every day. It’s hard to overlook ignorance sometimes, and I feel, like so many on your platform and mine, that in this day and age, question how could people continue to be so insensitive and mindless? 😡
Is this coach “truly” sorry or is this coach sorry they got caught again and called out on the carpet? This is not acceptable. But sometimes, I just wish people with a character like this coach, for example, would wake up and walk around for about a week switched to the race they were trying to dehumanize and see what it feels like to be mistreated simply because of the color of their skin and not the content of their character! SMH 🤨
I love you and your husband’s good cop/bad cop snapshot! 😉
Yes!!!!! I wish he could truly feel what it’s like to be judged in a harsh and unflattering way.
Thank you for reading and I am always the bad cop! 🤣 ready for foolishness
Oh I so love that! Speak your truth girlfriend! 👏🏼🙏🏼👍🏼💖
It feels sad that this happens and you handled it so amazingly. Very powerful post.
Thank you! I agree and I’m glad that my daughter grew stronger and wiser about the thought process of so many.
Thank you so much for reading
Thank you for this article and the actions you took! 🌸
Thank you so much!!!♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️🙏🏽
My daughter is multi-racial and most white people can’t tell(it’s true, don’t fight me🤷🏻♀️). She has frequently been present while her peers would make inappropriate comments and being blatantly racist, among other things. It’s always been a hard thing for her to bear having people be racist in her presence and have no idea that they are doing it in front of someone who is not just white, but also black and native American. It’s infuriating. I feel for your daughter and all those like her that have to have these experiences. Glad she has a strong momma that has her back!
Totally disrespectful but you sure do learn a lot about someone when they don’t know who they’re talking to!
This is exactly what Samara would come home and say to me! 💙
That’s so sweet!