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Black folks are known for abiding by superstitions to protect themselves from misfortune, evil spirits and unfortunate circumstances. With Friday the 13th being deemed an overall unlucky day, our superstition game must be on point! While some of them may sound silly, they all have roots in African American folklore and slavery.

Having parents from South Carolina, superstitions are something my family doesn’t take lightly. They truly adhere to these beliefs as some sort of protection or indication of what is to come in the future. I was taught about many of them at a young age and a lot of them stuck with me. If I didn’t learn it from them, I learned from my other friends whose grandparents had southern roots like mine.

Here’s 8 superstitions that we abide by on Friday the 13th and beyond.

If your right palm is itching, money is on the way.

Many superstitions were taught to me by my mother, and honestly she was right about this one!

She’s making money throughout the night

Source: Marco VDM / Getty


If your feet are itching, you are going to step on new ground.

Before I go to a new place, I have a distinctive itch on my foot. Even if I don’t have plans to go somewhere, that temporary itch on the bottom of my foot lets me know that I will be steeping foot in somewhere new soon.

African woman's feet in beach sand

Source: Jasmin Merdan / Getty


Don’t put your purse on the floor or you will be poor forever.

If you already don’t have much money, then you abide by this superstition to keep from being more broke than what you already are.


Source: MEHDI FEDOUACH / Getty

Don’t cross paths with a Black cat.

I literally cannot stand Black cats for this reason. It may sound foolish, but when I see them something upsetting always happens the next day or the same week!

Black Cat Sits on Kitchen Floor

Source: Grace Cary / Getty

A broken mirror will bring you seven years of bad luck.

The sight of a broken mirror is a scary sight for the superstitious! I’ve even been super careful with mirrors to ensure I’m not damned by this promise of misfortune.

Broken mirror

Source: Douglas Sacha / Getty

Seeing a white dove means there will be a death in the family.

Every time my mother would see a white dove, a wave of sadness would come over her. She would get anxious when the phone would ring because she would think she was getting a call about a death in the family or of a close family friend. Unfortunately, she’s never been wrong.

White dove with outstretched wings on blue sky

Source: Janis Litavnieks / Getty


When walking with friends, don’t “split the pole.”

I remember a time when I was walking with my friend and I walked on the other side of the light pole. They quickly turned around, backed me up and made walk on the other side. I was so confused! But when they told me walking on the opposite meant bad luck, I was relieved that habit was corrected.

Switched off urban streetlight in moonlight.

Source: Robert Brook / Getty


If your right eye jumps, you are going to hear good news. If your left eye jumps, you are going to hear bad news.

Now, I won’t lie. This is a superstition I live by! For example, I remember my right eye jumping throughout an entire month. I was excited because I knew great things were going to happen, and they did. I not only got a job offer but my private practice started booming as well due to many referrals coming in. If my left eye jumped, my checks would be deposited late, clients would cancel or I would have conflict.

Shot of a woman wearing under-eye gel patches as part of her beauty regime

Source: LaylaBird / Getty

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