Here’s What Gabrielle Union’s NAACP Awards Speech Has Taught Us About The Importance Of Partnership
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Here’s What Gabrielle Union’s NAACP Awards Speech Has Taught Us About The Importance Of Partnership

Gabrielle Union-Wade, in the history of Gabrielle Union-Wadeisms, has never stood down on any subject that she was passionate about. She has taken on Black women’s pay in Hollywood, human rights, and more.

And thankfully, in true Gabby fashion, her highly discussed recent NAACP President’s Award acceptance speech was no different, as she advocated on the front lines of her most personal in the name of family, a misunderstood LGBTQIA+ community, and her vows.

Yes ladies, her vows.

With her frustrations visible and lips quivering, Union bravely moved her husband to the side and took the moment to hold a mirror up to the event audience, home viewers, and media alike, whom she has collected years of criticism and harsh, eye-rolling scrutiny from.

“Black trans people are being targeted, terrorized, and hunted in this country. Every day, everywhere. And there’s rarely a whisper about it.”

She continued,

“This is a conversation worth having in ways that can actually build bridges — that don’t fan the flames of hatred or division, that don’t enable lawmakers or justice systems to look the other way when Black trans people are under attack. That don’t drive more young people to hate themselves or harm themselves. That don’t cost people their lives.”

As we know, Union-Wade is referring to trans daughter, Zaya Wade, whose family is ferociously known for publicly supporting, advocating, and loving, and even who both Gabby and Dwyane credit to being exactly who she is, no matter how misunderstood.

But as a woman who is married into a blended family, I couldn’t help but see her. And I don’t mean this in a literal sense, I mean truly see her. Being a woman who has not birthed their own children but has married into families where kids or teens are involved isn’t the path for many.

And that’s okay.

Who you are as a partner is often amplified in these cases, and you find yourself questioning who you are—many of us wouldn’t be good partners for certain people because of it. And despite the ridicule and criticism from the outside looking in, from people who mislabel or judge your parenting choices, you continue to show up.

Would you do the same for your partner?

Would you ignore the hate and combat willful ignorance, judgment, and beyond in the name of love?

Are you really about that life?

Think about it.

For Union-Wade, the decision to show up is an absolute non-negotiable, which she addressed on The Ellen Show, saying:

"With all of the love comes the hate too. It’s watching the love handle the hate that has been encouraging. We’re just loving and accepting our kids, which is not revolutionary. To some people it’s nuts. To us, it’s a little odd to get any kind of recognition for doing what you’re supposed to do, which is love and accept and embrace your kids.”

And with her husband right by her side, she adds, “I’m not standing on my own.”

How do you define a ‘partnership?’

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Featured image by Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images

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