My Interracial Marriage -A View From the Inside
A li.st of observations because I have no solutions
- •We had only been together for a few weeks and someone asked "What are you?" I remember it so clearly. He said "I'm an American."Not knowing him that well, I didn't talk to him about it then. Later when I brought it up, he said he didn't remember. He'd been asked the question so many times, it was his routine answer.
- •"What are you?"My husband's father was white (Western European) and his mother was Japanese. He's very tall, tanned with black hair. He's been asked if he's Native American, Chinese, Japanese, Filipino and Hawaiian.
- •"Where are you from?"America. Born and raised. Never lived anywhere else.
- •"How long have you been here?"All his life.
- •"Does that mean you're Hapa?"Hapa is a term originating in Hawaii to describe mixed race. Not everyone likes this word because it used to be a racial slur. But my brother-in-law uses and prefers it. http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2014/12/15/370416571/half-asian-half-white-no-hapa
- •Everyone in my previous office was in an interracial relationship. It's pretty common-it's not the 1950's anymore, thank goodness.My manager was Black and his wife was white. The sales rep was white & her boyfriend, father of her son, was Black. The new accounts rep was Hawaiian and her husband was white. Asst. manager was Filipino and his long time girlfriend was white. I could keep going but you get the idea. This is normal and it is fine BUT we all had a story to tell each other.
- •Not claiming any special wisdom here.I'm the first to admit I know little of what it's like to walk in anyone else's shoes. Whether you're a POC or white. I can only speak to what I've seen and try to listen and learn. My husband is a kind and good man who doesn't deserve to have people ask him stupid and hurtful questions. Below are some links that I found interesting.
- •Code SwitchLots of voices here. Lots of perspectives. A great place to start. http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/ & http://www.npr.org/sections/codeswitch/2016/08/25/455470334/all-mixed-up-what-do-we-call-people-of-multiple-backgrounds?utm_source=npr_newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_content=20160828&utm_campaign=bestofnpr&utm_term=nprnews
- •part asian • 100% hapaThe Hapa Project is a multiracial identity project created by artist Kip Fulbeck. http://www.thehapaproject.com/
- •An essay on race. NY TimesA quote-One woman states to her observers: “I am a person of color. I am not half-‘white.’ I am not half-‘Asian.’ I am a whole ‘other." http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/12/14/magazine/choose-your-own-identity.html?referer=http://lm.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2015%2F12%2F14%2Fmagazine%2Fchoose-your-own-identity.html&h=3AQFjOqZb&s=1
- •It's been 20 years since I first heard my husband asked "What are you" but when I heard it again last weekI realized we haven't come as far along as I'd thought.