A Letter to the 13 Year Old Daughter I Don’t Have
Heath Houston
6314

It was interesting to read your letter ten days after writing a similar letter to my 13-year-old and her brother. The main divergence, I think, is that I’m not telling the kids not to be afraid — I’m trying to help them think of what to do with that fear.

So often as parents — or as friends — it is tempting to tell kids it’s not that bad, because we don’t want them to feel scared… or we don’t want to feel scared ourselves.

But not being afraid is the ULTIMATE white privilege right now. A 13-yr-old is old enough to learn how dangerous it is to be brown or black in America. A 13-yr-old is old enough to get involved in anti-racist and anti-bullying initiatives at school, at a moment when kids of color and queer kids are being unfriended and trash-talked in the name of Trump. A 13-yr-old is old enough to be part of a serious conversation about what we do when they come for our neighbors.

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