Fascinating. In my dictionary, it’s described as intrusive interest, dehumanizing curiosity, and something I don’t want to be. Why do you find me so…fascinating?

Why is my hair so interesting to you? Compliments leak from your tongue like too much wine. Stop it, you’re drunk.

It’s as if you feel the need to validate my individuality. I take advantage of the variations of styles that my hair happens to fall into, and you take care to remind me that it looks nice. Do you wish you could try it? Do you want to empower me to embrace my natural curls?

Well, then maybe you should worry more about the ways my hair has been discriminated against and less about how it feels between your fingers.

I can’t believe this chick just touched my hair. Like I’m some pet wandering her pen at the zoo. I’m trying desperately to think of an instance where I’ve had any interest at all in running my brown fingers over someone else’s strands and all I picture is…a dog. Thanks.

Do you think you could just, Stop Fetishizing Me? There’s a difference between recognizing my individuality and making it your object of study.

We’re both so totally different that you can’t even fathom all of the ways. I will never not be one of your “Black friends.” You should go ahead and introduce me as such. Such thoughtless omissions only make me feel more invisible.

My Blackness gives context to my experiences. Going to a white school system is different. Finding a hairdresser is different. Walking down the street is different. Succeeding at anything is different.

But you’re so blinded by my hair, my skin color, and the size of my brother’s manhood that you’re in no danger of enlightening yourself.

I am a human, not a physiology. I have a culture, not a race. And you should use my Blackness as a reminder to check your privilege and ignorance at the door. And be fascinated by the fact I didn’t break your wrist.

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