Motherhood, pubic hair and Hitler!

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‘Mum, if a man was bald. did Hitler check their pubes to make sure they were blond, even when he had seen they had blue eyes?’  This was my teenage daughter to me yesterday. You may have guessed, they are onto the second world war in their history syllabus!


I was so stunned, I said ask your dad, knowing that if we were now on the subject of pubic hair there was no way she was going to ask him as she is also at a stage where I seem to be getting a different type of conversation with her to what she brings up with her dad. As normal, certain things just embarrass her talking to him. To my surprise she marched down the stairs and asked him the question. I am sure he is still in shock as he was very comfortable with her avoiding him when it comes to certain issues.

Why am I sharing this with you here, Africa on the blog? A few reasons really. The first being that I just laughed so much once I had recovered. The fact that she had spent so much time thinking this though and had come up with that. Believe me we have been talking about the second world war a lot since last term (Sept-Dec). I have brought her quite a few books as added reading on the subject and we have had many intelligent /’high brow’ discussions around the subject.  The point though is , I have shared on here and twitter that I have been having a hard time with a family illness that just seem a roller coaster ride every day. So to have that short time of intense laughter was like a tonic for me. IMAGE SOURCE

Second thing is I had promised that I would share experiences about being African, black and a mother on here and not necessarily all there in the same blog. and if this is not a challenge being a mother I do not know what is!

This also showed an added maturity in her, as she could talk to her dad about it! As children we notice the first steps, word,  tooth and many milestones. I also do my best to notice milestones in these teenage years and for our family this was very important!

They come in very subtle disguises! So what did I do next? I sat down and discussed the fact the said I did not even know whether blondes had blonde pubic hair and would have to check on the internet as I was worried that the subject matter might bring up unsuitable results for her to do the search!  This was not my only response as we also talked about the fact that it was a plan in action for the future rather than everyone having to be Aryan at that precise moment.

I am not going to discuss the results of my search but hope I have not offended anyone this morning!

By the way, last week she had said that if she had one question for Hitler it would be ‘ Mr Hitler, what is it about you that you see every morning in the mirror that makes you think that blonde, blue eyed is the way to go?’

I am a Sierra Leonean, married mother of one who has lived in the UK for over 25 years. I originally trained as a cancer nurse in London. I moved into the pharmaceutical industry after eight years of nursing, went into a variety of sales and marketing roles and left three years ago to become self employed. I am now launching a lingerie line for women of colour to complement their skin tones in the UK and US Find me @beingU_ on Twitter!

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  1. Anonymous says

    Aah, children-
    As Sarah said thank you for sharing this family moment and do you remember that when the idea of African on the blog was conceived you and I spoke spoke at length about giving African mothers in diaspora a space to discuss the ins and outs of bringing up African children in the diaspora.

    • Sadia says

      Hi Ida,
      I suppose sometimes what is hard to separate is what is due to being an African mother in the Diaspora to what is just about being a mother. That may actually be my next post….

    • Sadia says

      Hi Ida,
      I suppose sometimes what is hard to separate is what is due to being an African mother in the Diaspora to what is just about being a mother. That may actually be my next post….

  2. says

    What I have been pondering about being a mom (a new mom, not yet facing the philosophical questions), is the difference in handling babies in both environments. In England, routine, routine, routine is the driven message. I discussed this with my mum, to which she immediately responded, “But African babies know nothing about routine!” I may also blog on my reflections. Have you ever thought about whether Africans in the Diaspora would want their kids to have extra lessons in African History? You know, it is common to find Greek schools, or Chinese schools, which cater to those communities when they find themselves a minority and would like to preserve a sense of culture and teach language skills to their children.

    • Sadia says

      Emang, I keep saying we should meet or talk. I have gone out of my way that my daughter has a lot of African/black history throughout. There are lots of barriers to ‘African’ schooling. So many experiences and so many languages. It would have to be broken down. Still your point very good.

      • says

        Emang & Sadia,
        I have been thinking for a while now about giving African children in the diaspora extra lessons in African history. One reason is because I’ve also learned (and keep learning) tons about African history in the diaspora that wasn’t taught to me in Kenya. I realized that some of the material approved by the Kenyan government for history text books was actually propaganda. Sigh. My passion is to go back in history and write down the stories that were passed down orally. What a pity that so many of our forebears have already “slept” and cannot be consulted.

        • Sadia says

          Minda, maybe you should look into how it can be done and draw on the many different parts of the continent. I agree that we have lost a lot of the access to the stories. I also think the influx of TV etc spoilt the chance of hearing these stories more. The only good thing about the cuts on electricity back home, was, that was the only time we got the stories!


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