Over the horrific and life changing times of living in the south along with college life, I have heard the craziest stereotypes that I've never heard growing up in the melting pot of the big apple. I miss you New York, you were my beginning but I've noticed dark skinned and light skinned plays a deep and essential part of a conversation in the South. Red bone is a term I was not use to growing up in NY and as soon as I stepped on campus I noticed that separation of light and dark; it was like a big joke to them to be called by their skin color. I still look at it as disrespectful because it shows that the slavery mentality is still implemented in African Americans and it's strong. I noticed as a male being too dark skinned was referred to as blue black, shoe polish black, or even African black. Many dark skinned males seem to only go for the light skinned females while they insult them on being so fair skinned. Even the light skinned female will tease the dark skinned male saying, "Why you so black? " In addition to light skined males are looked at as conceited just like the light skinned female. Besides that natural hair is look at as not beautiful but only nappy, there are a selective amount that understand the beauty. Some people even think natural can not grow very long which makes me more determined to have my hair down my back. I was even told one day "Oh your hair is natural it no ones sees your length so it doesn't matter". When I told my mother her reply was "The length of your straight hair, you could just put in a weave, no one would know". Some women are so afraid of the stereotypes and negative stigmas of natural hair that they perm their hair too death and wear weaves so much they forget the true texture of their hair. It's amazing that a woman can feel distraught if her hair doesn't have weave or it's not permed. So my advice is it's not your FREAKING hair release it and unleash your natural, unprocessed beauty. Living in the south has taught me some valuable lessons of holding on to who you were to accept who you will become, be comfortable in your skin, light or back, nappy, kinky, curly or straight!! Always be true to you and break your stereotypes and stigmas is someone shows you something different. Love your spirit and your soul to have a heart of gold; and love your mind before your body.