Relationship Coach, Marriage and Family Therapist, Black Woman
Denver While Black
She remembers being shocked that Denver actually had white people because she grew up in Houston, Texas, with yearly and extended visits to Denver, but only going to Black neighborhoods. She was in for a big surprise when she moved there as an adult to continue her professional career!
Being biracial forced her at an early age to hate boxes as she was told that she had to pick one box for her racial identity even though she was two. Being biracial in Denver afforded her less overt racism, but she still felt unwelcome and not seen or heard so often because she was still Black—or not white. And then 2020 happened and the covert, in the closet racism came out in full display and folks wanted to see her as connected to their whiteness, but not for her own beauty and what she brought to their relationships. She deeply desired and wanted to be seen for her uniqueness not her sameness.
During the riots and protests of last year, she realized who her friends were, what they thought. She feels freedom to talk about the hard parts of being of color now because everyone else is. She is clear and careful to identify and define whiteness—as not all white folks are steeped in whiteness. She says that whiteness tends to lump all non-white people into one category. Folks who have the lens of whiteness project their view of the world that they want everyone else to have without stepping into another person’s shoes.
Her Career, Therapy, and Coaching
Brittany Green is a marriage and family therapist by training who now does coaching for women looking to transform their self-image so that they can position themselves for relationships worthy of their time, energy, and whole selves. She does her work through private coaching sessions and her online membership program Collaborative Healing Spot which gives people access to different types of coaches that they can work with on the platform or hire for personal work.
In her work, she prioritizes translating pain into light, helping women to embrace their entire being so they feel worthy and pursue relationships that they deserve, and shedding the archetype of the Black woman is a motherly figure to be selfless and to help everyone else but ourselves. She helps clients to reframe trauma from the past and incorporate it into their story as a strength. She can also help you to excavate negative beliefs and replace them with healthy ones so that people can find love.
One thing I loved about our interview is how she explained the difference between therapy and coaching. For either, it only works when a person is willing and ready to do the work because prioritizing yourself is a big cognitive and life shift. Go to a therapist immediately after trauma, if you have been carrying pain for a long time, to help you stabilize and find normalcy and grounded in your being so you can continue meeting your goals. Therapy is client-led and gives you a mirror to see yourself.
For a Coach, you have already been in therapy and now are asking yourself, “How do I get that next thing?” Hire a coach to help you get to a specific goal from Point A to Point B. You are ready to solve the problem and the coach will guide you along a coach-centered journey.
How to find professional therapists and coaches? Use social media using hashtags and watch videos on YouTube. Schedule a free intake or phone call to get a feel with a therapist/coach to see if you feel safe, heard, and connected. Ask them, “How long have you been doing this? What are some of your successes with past clients? Can you take me through some strategies that have worked with other people that you can try with me?”
Black people—Hold your boundaries. You don’t have to be the Black friend or explain your blackness if you don’t want to. Find safe communities and get a professional coach or therapist who can validate and hear your thoughts, pain, and identity. Give yourself permission to not talk about race issues and to convince people that your own lived experience is real.
White people—Do your research, be open to the stories that may be counterintuitive to your beliefs, and be curious.
Favorite Place in Denver: Irish Rover and Wash Park
Recommended book: Human(kind): How Reclaiming Human Worth and Embracing Radical Kindness Will Bring Us Back Together by Ashlee Eiland
(Buy books from Black independent bookstores, not Amazon! Use link above to purchase and support Uncle Bobbie’s Books.)
Connect With Brittany Green
Connect with Jenaya Perdue
Podcast: Melanated Stamps
Are you Black in Denver and want to be showcased in the series #DenverWhileBlack? Email firstname.lastname@example.org