5 Things Black Nerds May Have to Deal With Growing Up

Finding a Group of Friends Who Can Relate to You

Oftentimes, as a Black nerd, it’s hard to find a group of people you totally relate to. This is especially true for Black kids in school. Far too often, you were never fully accepted by any social group because the Black kids mislabeled you as “acting white” and the other kids couldn’t relate to your cultural background. This all made for a very lonely experience.

Being Different From Everyone Else in Your Family

Although family is always supposed to be a sanctuary, that wasn’t always the case if you were a Blerd. Your family members may have always meant well, but they didn’t quite relate to all your “nerd” interests when they were busy concerning themselves with sports and music. However, in the end, your family still loved you, and this became particularly true when your “nerdiness” subsequently led you to be one of the most successful people in family history.

Being the Only Black Kid in the Classroom

Many Blerd kids who worked their way into gifted programs find themselves in a dilemma when they end up being the only Black kid in the class. It’s another time that Blerds end up being lonely and not having anyone to relate to fully, especially when they have to deal with the fact that their teachers are white as well.

blerds students

Having Your Exceptional Work Be Insulted by Being Called a ‘Quota’

Anyone who understands the way systems work understands that there’s no truth to this accusation. However, the truth isn’t always enough to ease the sting of this perception. While the stereotype is definitely something that needs to go away, all most Blerds can do in the meantime is continue being exceptional and continue to set more examples for future Blerds so that they feel less ostracized down the road.

Having to Code-Switch Between Your White and Black Friends

When being a minority in the classroom but still being in a Black family and neighborhood, the way to possibly fit in is to toe the line between both very distinct cultures. Code-switching can be defined as alternating between different language styles to fit the particular social setting that you’re faced with. Most Blerds had to learn how to do this to some degree in order to have any semblance of a social life in each different environment.

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