Starting conversations about race

Starting conversations about race

LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Starting and continuing conversations about race and what’s happening across the nation can be difficult for some, especially for parents. Licensed Counselor and founder of the Salt and Light Collaborative, Julie Este-McDonald explained that her clients, globally are having conversations about race and what’s happening across the nation.

“It’s something that’s definitely happening locally and in the context of therapy, just processing the feelings that come along with witnessing everything that’s happening right now and kind of processing that along with your own life experiences,” Este-McDonald said.

One recommendation she has for processing what’s happening is through meaningful conversations with family and friends.

“As we process this trauma it’s important that we do it together as a community," Este-Mcdonald said. "It’s important to connect with people that look like you and with people that don’t look like you because that’s where healing takes place, and that’s where education takes place.”

Those include having conversations with your children which she says should be approached with honesty. A conversation she shared she will be having soon, is with her eldest son expressing her concerns when he joins driver’s ed.

“One of those [concerns] is related to the fact that we have to remember that he may have certain precautions he has to take because of the color of his skin, and so we have to teach him about that," Este-McDonald said. "But it’s also with the understanding even though there are some people that look at you because of the color of your skin, that doesn’t define you and it doesn’t mean that everyone is like that.”

She hopes these kinds of honest and healing conversations will continue with everyone, even after the protests.

“It’s important for everyone to recognize that it is not the responsibility for people of color to educate everyone that asks them a question and it can also be overwhelming," Este-McDonald said. "I think it’s very important that we all take the time to educate ourselves so we can learn more but to come to the table and have conversations together.”

As always, she advises those who are suffering to seek professional help.

For more information on the Salt and Light Collaborative, click HERE.

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