The Stages Of Grief When A White Person Gets Called Out On Racism

Read
(Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

If you’re a person of color with an opinion on the internet, you’ve most likely run into this situation: a well-intentioned white person posts a questionable article on race. You voice your distaste for the writer and the article, which features coded racism. Then one of the poster’s white friends with an ambiguous political affiliation jumps in to defend the article and challenge your point of view. Within a span of few minutes, your new friend spirals through the stages of grief. It usually looks a little something like this:

Denial

Wow! Not everything is about race. And before you say anything, you do not know me. Those who do know me know I have a neighbor who is black. He’s great. Keeps to himself mostly, but our children wave to each other when we pass them on the sidewalk. You’re clearly projecting your own biases against white people. We are not all the same. I tutor inner-city kids once a month and I don’t even think of them as black. I don’t see color; I just see a bunch of children who need my help. You’re being a hypocrite.

Anger

You know what? I’m soooo sick of having to baby someone’s feelings because of this ridiculous PC culture we live in. Grow up! Isn’t it actually racist to constantly tell white people they are racist? This is typical lynch mob behavior from Social Justice Warriors. I can’t even tell what race you are, because you’re not white and I’m colorblind. Get a hobby!

Bargaining

Okay, honestly. Why do you have to make everything about race? Can we just focus on what we have in common and work together as one for ALL lives? We need to stop with the divisiveness. We’re all just indistinguishable pieces of matter. And race is a social construct, so, technically, it doesn’t exist. And like I said, I don’t see color, unless it’s white.

Depression

*Sigh* I’m so tired of people not seeing the good work I do for the community and what a great ally I am. I’m gonna go listen to Iggy Azalea. She gets it.  

Acceptance

N/A