“Here You Are. Black and Woman and in Love with Yourself. You are Terrifying. They are Terrified (as they should be)”- Upile Chisala

In the narrative of the Strong Black Woman is the ever-lurking persona of the “SCARY” Sista’. (I mean why did the Sista’ in the group have to be named “Scary” Spice?).

Yes, our Black-Woman-ness doesn’t offend, anger or even threaten the status quo as much as it simply...SCARES. Think back to the 70’s era movie heroines of Coffy, Cleopatra Jones and even TV’s “Get Christy Love!” We were some badassed not to be messed with SUPERWOMEN! Add in the present fame of broom-wielding Cookie Lyon or even the cool, calm but “deep-down you know she’s deadly” glare of the refined Claire Huxtable (eww-wee watching these two Go-To-War on Empire is EVERYTHING) and I’ll be the first to admit that I sometimes REVEL in the SCARY stereotype.  

I’ve grown to love the sheer POWER rush of the unadulterated TERROR I’ve witnessed that my Afro-ed/Cornrowed/Bantu Knotted/Natural Puff presence can often evoke.

It’s awesome. Until it’s not.

Not when it becomes the ONLY definition.
Not when it is the so-called reason we get gunned down in cold-blood.
Not when grown men wince when we approach them.
Not when our babies flinch when we reach for them.
Not when it becomes a cover-up instead of a cape.

Thus, we must learn how-to define a “SCARY” Sista’. 

It means if your children are getting excessively punished in school; put on your “I have the expulsion rates for black students in this district” SCARY Sista’ cape.

It means if you’ve been passed over for a raise/promotion; put on your “Here’s my annual reviews for the past few years, along with my accomplishments and here’s why I’ve earned this” SCARY Sista’ face.

It means if you’re stuck in a relationship that is no longer meeting your emotional, spiritual intellectual and physical needs; put on your “Babe we need to have a heart-to-heart discussion about our future together” SCARY Sista’ voice.

Because in the end it’s a big SCARY World out there, and NOBODY handles it with as much Grace, Giving and Grit as a Sista’.

There you have it.



My name is Toye Sibley Jones, B.S. in Social Science. I am the Principal Consultant at Busura Consulting Services. I specialize in Compliance, HR and Recruitment. I can be reached at  I’m interested in empowering others, I’d describe myself as an Activist and Advocate, with a Passion for People of the African Diaspora.


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