The story every parent in America needs to read
The path to creating a family is almost never easy or straightforward. As a single African American woman, Nefertiti Austin knew her journey would be more challenging than most. Eager to finally join the motherhood ranks, Nefertiti felt discouraged by the roadblocks that seemed nearly insurmountable as she fought to adopt her son from the foster care system. Along the way, Nefertiti realized that American society saw motherhood through a primarily white lens, and that there would be no easy understanding or acceptance of the kind of family she hoped to build.
Motherhood So White is the story of Nefertiti’s fight to create the family she always knew she was meant to have and the story of motherhood that all American families need now. In this unflinching account of her parenting journey, Nefertiti examines the history of adoption in the African American community, faces off against stereotypes of single, Black motherhood, and confronts the reality of raising children of color in racially charged, modern-day America.
Honest, vulnerable, and uplifting, Motherhood So White reveals what Nefertiti knew all along—that the only requirement for a successful family is one raised with love.
In this timely, insightful memoir, novelist Austin (Eternity) examines adoption and child-rearing as a single black woman confronting gender and racial bias. At age nine, Austin was taken in by her maternal grandparents, who provided a life that "mirrored white middle class America: a secure household, church, piano lessons" yet lacked legal recognition; it was an informal black adoption, "the practice of raising nieces, nephews, cousins, and grandchildren" that "followed an established cultural tradition." At 36, eager to become a mother, she trained as a foster parent and learned that "Black boys were least likely to be adopted." The notion "awakened my Black Power roots. Adopting a baby boy would allow me to lift as I climbed." Matched with a six-month-old in 2007, she renamed him August and legally adopted him in 2009. Throughout, Austin pegs her son's daily life to such events as Obama's election (Obama "was the manifestation of my hopes and dreams for my son") and the murder of Trayvon Martin (black boys "will be perceived as hypermasculine" and therefore a threat). Juxtaposing tender mother-child moments with the dangers facing African-American boys, Austin captures both the love and fear of her parenting experience in this powerful, spirited narrative.
Motherhood So White
What a joy to read such an insightful and positive book about Black Parenting, single parenting, and especially Adoption. So necessary .