op-ed dear solange: ‘a seat at the table’ is good for black mental health and self-love

October 3, 2016

Dear solange,

With people of color frequently getting harassed, shot, and killed by the hands of the police in the media, people constantly telling us our natural hair isn’t good or professional enough, being ridiculed and called racist for trying to empower our people and having self love, and minorities struggling to financially and physically survive you couldn’t have dropped this new album at a better time.

The fact that you gave us an album that unapologetically celebrates and inform us is so needed for our mental health. With your songs that have titles such as ‘Weary’, ‘Mad’, ‘Don’t Touch My Hair’, ‘F.U.B.U’, ‘Tina Taught Me’, ‘Rise’, and ‘Boderline (An Ode To Self Care)’ you can hear the frustrations, pain, anger, willingness for self love, black empowerment, and most importantly black self care bless our ears through this eccentric and unique style of music.

‘Boderline (an ode to self care)’ is my favorite. Our self care is extremely important in the times we’re living in. We’re constantly exposed to the tragedies in the media. In light of that we’re also caught up in trying to care for families, working jobs, trying to provide, and survive in this crazy world. A lot of us are definitely on the ‘Boderline’ to not only losing our self but also losing our minds. Depression, PTSD, substance abuse, and suicide are affecting a lot of our people. We MUST take care of ourselves in times like this. You get that and you’re not afraid to express your own take on things to the world.

By Jasmin Pierre*, AFROPUNK contributor

As a mental activist who happens to be a woman of Color I salute you. I applaud you for caring so much about your people. You took the time out to make an album that is for US. You made a soundtrack that can ease our minds and some of our pain and frustrations we are currently going through. Thank you for the reminder that it’s ok to love, empower, and take care of ourselves.

Alot of our people tend to be silent about our mental health and that still needs to change. More of us are waking up and educating ourselves on that topic which is a step in the right direction. The fact that we have an album like “A Seat At The Table” that can wake up more of our people up about our empowerment and self care is also a plus.

Thank you for caring Solange. You’re DOPE and so is your album!


*Jasmin Pierre is a 27-year-old mental health activist and author of the new self help book “A Fight Worth Finishing”. She is from New Orleans, Louisiana. Jasmin is constantly fighting for the rights of those suffering from major depressive disorder. She inspires to become a life coach and continue writing to encourage others to never give up.

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