Karrueche Is A Reminder That A Break-up Can Be Essential To Your Glow-up

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Karrueche Tran is out here living her best life. From starring in the hit television show Claws (staying booked and busy), to galavanting across the beach with her own personal piece of hot chocolate, Victor Cruz - she's reminding us to take notes on how to move on and glow-up.

Karrueche's relationship and split from Chris Brown was highly publicized, but also allowed her to use her platform in the media to create a lane for herself. Tabloids and even Chris himself have teased that she was using his name to rise to fame, but I strongly disagree with their perspective.

Karrueche was able to push through the pain and create her own happiness, amidst the bullsh*t and she deserves so much credit.

Time heals all, and heels hurt to walk in; at least that's what Drake said. A break-up with someone you thought you could spend your life with can be traumatic, and picking up the pieces can be a lot harder than it looks.

After my last breakup, I spent the better part of a year sick and tired, literally.I cried, and I slept, and wallowed in my sadness so much that my body caught the hint and my immune system literally gave up. I visited the emergency room more times than I have in 25 years of living in one year. I suffered from allergic reactions and infections that seemed to have no explanation; that was until I sat in on a sermon that asked the question, "Do you want to be well?"

The message in the sermon came at the perfect time and was one of those experiences when you know the pastor is speaking directly to you.

I let that statement echo in my mind for days, and came to the conclusion that I couldn't shake my exhaustion because I didn't want to. I allowed the sickness that I felt emotionally to manifest physically and I relished in it to the point where it was familiar, and I felt comfortable.

It wasn't until this year, after taking some serious alone time, that I remembered, "Oh yeah. I'm the shit." We sometimes get so overwhelmed by our emotions, that we forget that we were great before we met our lovers, and we will be great long after they leave.

A man being unable to recognize your worth does not depreciate your value.

Karrueche and Chris have had an on-again off-again relationship since 2010 and officially broke it off in 2015. In an Instagram post preluding her 2015 interview with Iyanla Vanzant, Karrueche owned her choices and said that she hopes opening up about her own experience will help other women discover love within themselves:

"This is about recognizing my mistakes and learning from them. I own up to all the poor choices I have made and pray for the better. I pray everyday to God to strengthen me as a human and a young woman."

Since then, she's been focused on her own personal glow up, pursuing an active acting career. In addition to her role in the TNT hit Claws, since her breakup, Karrueche has won a Daytime Emmy Award for producing the digital series The Bay, has had successful brand collaborations (Kae Pop for Colourpop for example), and has gained her footing in the modeling and entertainment industry alike.

Karrueche proves that positivity and self-evaluation are essential to moving forward after a bad breakup. Here are four things to keep in mind when you're attempting to break the cycle of an on-again off-again relationship:

Everything That You Think is Not True

Sometimes our thoughts can be deceiving, so don't believe everything that you think. Make the effort to consciously and actively plant seeds of love, faith, and forgiveness, and you will harvest fruit beyond your wildest dreams. The problem is, our brain gravitates toward what is most familiar: pain. Try to catch yourself mid-thought when you feel like indulging in negative self-talk, because it's not the truth.

You Can't Fill From An Empty Cup

Women of color are subjected to superwoman complex. We have to be everything to everyone, because we feel like if we are not, everything will fall apart. We can't show weakness or vulnerability out of fear that we will be judged or criticized. We have to learn to recognize when we are on E, or we will never perform at our full potential. It's okay to not be okay, but pretending like you are won't allow you to heal. Feeling is healing.

You're Not Lonely, You're Alone

You are so dope. If I'm the first person to tell you that today, you need to check in with yourself. The age of social media makes us feel the need to constantly be connected. I suggest that you take some time to be less accessible. Not everybody should be able to reach you all the time. Designate some time in your days, or even your whole day if time allows, that is just for you. Just because you're alone doesn't mean your lonely. Use that time to get to know yourself.

An Idle Mind is The Devil's Workshop

Use your newfound alone time to be productive. If you continue to be steadfast in the pursuit of your purpose, everything will fall into place. "Boredom" can lead to some serious backpedaling and a slew of bad decisions. Spend your time on the things that matter, because time is all we have. There will come a time to love again, but use your time alone to selfishly love yourself.

Go hiking. Apply for a new job. Read something for fun. Watch what you want on Netflix without having to wonder if your partner likes this show. You like this show, damn it.

Karrueche is proof of what can happen when you have the strength to break the cycle of depthless monogamy and love yourself for a while. You might just stumble across your own personal piece of hot chocolate in the meantime.

Thrive, baby, thrive.

Featured image by Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.


We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
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Featured image by Shutterstock

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