DEAR HARRIETTE: My family arranged for me to go camping with them for five days in September without asking me beforehand. They said they didn’t ask me because they knew I would say no.
I still don’t want to go because I don’t like camping and I have a big project at work around the same time, but that’s clearly a big deal for them. Should I give priority to work or family in this situation?
DEAR FAMILY TRIP: If you can figure out how to get your job done and go on the journey, that would be a generous, peace-making role.
Your family obviously wants to spend time with you. Camping takes you away from the hustle and bustle of work and personal distractions.
Although you don’t enjoy camping, do your best to schedule this time for her. Be positive and fully present when you are together. Make sure to get your job done so it doesn’t turn into a cloud over your head that you either rule or worry internally about getting it done. Planning is everything.
Hopefully this trip goes well and you get a little more amenable to the idea of the family outing. Then you can remind your family to include you in the planning next time so you don’t have to compromise on work or family.
DEAR HARRIETTE: My friends and I – we are all three blacks – were trying to break into a club in downtown Huntsville, Alabama when we were told that we were breaking the dress code.
My friend was told that the logo on his shirt was too big and I was told that I couldn’t wear red because of gang membership. A few moments later we saw three white men in red enter the club without any problems. The bouncer got mad at us when we asked questions about it.
Obviously we were refused entry because we are black. We reported the club to the Better Business Bureau, but they did almost nothing. What shall we do now?
LOVE PROFILED: You can go to the local news media to tell them what happened and ask them to investigate. Sometimes local news broadcasts take up discrimination issues and help shed light on bad practice. They can report the club to the local police station, although it doesn’t sound like what they did was an obvious crime.
Additionally, you can use social media to post what happened to you and encourage people to boycott the club. A groundswell on social media can help raise awareness of bad behavior. Finally, you and your friends can personally invite others not to spend their time or money in places with discriminatory practices. This works best when you can build a diverse coalition of supporters – not just black men. You need allies willing to speak out. Good luck.
Harriette Cole is a lifestyleist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative that helps people achieve and achieve their dreams. Questions can be sent to [email protected] or c / o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.