Self
Racism And Me: What It’s Like To Be A Young Black British Woman Today
Words by MICHELLE ABRAHAM
As Black Lives Matter protests continue around the world, Michelle, 31, a writer from Hertfordshire, shares her personal experience of racism through school, dating and work
Michelle Abraham.
My Childhood

I grew up in the 1990s to working-class parents in Hertfordshire; a talkative, passionate Malaysian dad and a kind and doting Mauritian mum. 

“You’re going to big school soon and will play with loads of other little girls and boys,” my mum said. She was beaming with pride as she took a photo of me, aged five, in my baggy, bright-red primary-school jumper and pleated grey skirt. 

A wave of nostalgia hits me with that comment: “loads of other little girls and boys”. My parents never really talked about race in my childhood and never made me feel that we as a family were different to anyone else. 

They instilled in me that I must treat everyone equally and with compassion. My mum and dad taught me people should be judged on their morals and how they treat others.

Fancy raising your game?
Access everything you need to supercharge your career. Join smart women in the know – with a free 14-day trial – to sample talks, courses, workshops and much, much more.
Start Free Trial
Already a member? Login