• DeAara Lewis

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“You’re the Pretty Sister…”

“You’re the pretty sister.”  This is something my sisters and I have heard all of our lives.  For some reason, certain people would take it upon themselves as if it was their God-given right to let us know who they found the more attractive.  As though we were going to feel validated and go off and brag to the other one that we won this round.

I’ve never understood why some people felt the urge to do that, as if we didn’t have enough insecurities growing up in this construct, I use to be polite about this, not wanting to hurt that person’s feelings and I would casually laugh it off or kindly reply, “We are all pretty…yada, yada, yada” and try to convince them why they shouldn’t think that way.  Now I’m down to being quite blunt about it.  If someone can come up to me and say that as if I would sell my sisters out over a beauty contest, then that person must not think much of me anyway, so I consider my response fair game.

It pisses me off for a number of reasons.  Comparisons can cause unnecessary rifts amongst siblings and it’s quite heartbreaking to witness.  Thankfully, my sisters and I have certain family members (mainly my mother) who didn’t play into that and we learned how to hash out our problems and stay 100% authentic with each other.

Of course, we can’t stop people from comparing us; my nephew has even fallen victim to it, more so because he has a darker complexion.  So-called well-meaning people have sold him out too based on their preconceived notions about him because of his complexion and because he likes hip hop music.  Once again, because of what my sisters and I went through as well as some of his other family members who are his allies, we were able to quickly intervene, form a fort around him and train him to see himself through his own eyes.  He trips up every now and then, but luckily he has firm grasp on who he is.

If you find yourself getting mixed into the comparison game with insensitive people,  I suggest that you set a firm boundary with them.  Let them know that what they are saying is offensive and unacceptable.  If they continue to do it, cut them off.  A genuine friend would never try to play you against the people you love.  Whatever you do, don’t blame your sibling or family member for it or worse, buy into it.  Beauty is subjective.  And at the end of the day, all that really matters is the love and loyalty you all have for one another, to hell with the rest.


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