I DIDN'T REALLY UNDERSTAND MY WHITE PRIVILEGE UNTIL I MOVED TO INDIA

My "White Privilege Is" inspired by @ListPrompts and @JennyJLee
  1. I knew that it was easier for me
  2. I understood that I was not mistreated because of my race.
  3. I saw and heard about racism, but it didn't always sink in. Sometimes it did. Sometimes it hit home in a big way, but not enough to fully grasp the everydayness of it.
  4. Then I started dating my husband.
  5. And people asked me why I would want to date him. Because of his race and culture.
  6. No one asked him that question. Because I was the white one.
  7. And sometimes people stared and gave us dirty looks when we kissed or walked hand in hand together.
  8. And I saw how it affected me and him. But I still didn't understand the big picture of what my white privilege meant.
  9. And then I moved to India. And being white is different here. There are still privileges. Don't get me wrong.
  10. No one hassles me at customs or immigration.
  11. I've been in and out of the country a few times and no one has ever asked me about what could look like suspicious behavior.
    Like, "Why do you enter and exit India so much? You're not from here."
  12. Or if I'm trying to use my marriage to gain residency in India.
    Which, surprise, I am.
  13. But they hassle my husband in America.
  14. He shaves and dresses up before flights so, in his words, "I won't look like a terrorist."
    Really he means so no one will treat him like he might be one.
  15. He won't go through immigration with me in America because he doesn't want anyone to ask him if he's trying to get a green card.
  16. Living as a minority race in India, I understand a little more what it's like everyday to not be white in America.
  17. Not the big things. But the little daily things that make life harder for people of color.
  18. So I'm sorry.
  19. I'm sorry I never understood what it's like to not be able to find makeup for your coloring.
  20. And that people have opinions on how you should be maintaining your body based on your color.
    Had to argue with a saleswoman in India who refused to sell me facial exfoliant. She kept trying to give me fairness creams and face wash for extremely sensitive skin - which I don't have.
  21. I'm sorry I thought it must be easy to find hair dye in your color.
  22. Or a hair stylist who knows what to do with your type of hair.
  23. And I didn't get the struggle to find clothes that fit your body shape.
  24. I'm sorry I didn't understand that when you said people ask you questions about your race, you meant all the time.
  25. And I didn't know what it felt like to have people compare your race to theirs.
  26. I never knew what it was like to feel inferior because of your race.
  27. And I still don't. Not the way you do. But only on a smaller level.
  28. Like when someone in my husband's family firmly told me that my children better look like him. They better look Indian. And they needed to have Indian names.
  29. And I was left speechless. Because to me it didn't matter. They would look like us. Wouldn't that be perfect?
  30. I didn't know what it felt like to be the only person of your race in a group.
  31. I'd never had to think about my race before going somewhere. Is it safe for me there? Will my race make me stand out? Will it make me more vulnerable?
  32. I hadn't ever been judged for wearing clothes particular to my own culture.
  33. I didn't know what it was like to be told by salespeople that you should wear or buy certain things because of your skin color, even though they didn't know anything about your skin or coloring.
    For example, being told you should buy certain lipsticks because the girl on the ad (who is white, sure, but has very different coloring) is wearing them.
  34. I'm sorry I never understood how annoying it is to be asked everywhere you go where you are from. I'd had friends who'd been asked multiple times where they were visiting from, and having to answer that they actually live in America. But I didn't get it. But now no one thinks I actually live in India.
  35. And no one assumes my husband and I are married.
  36. I'm sorry I didn't understand how boxed in you feel when people stereotype or assume your skills based on your race.
  37. I'm sorry I didn't truly see all of the generalizations heaped upon all people of your color and people of different cultural backgrounds.
  38. Those stereotypes and generalizations exist for my race as well, but I never had to feel them before. Because most people were of my race.
  39. I'm sorry.
  40. There's so much more that people of color go through everyday.
  41. I saw it. But I didn't really understand.
  42. I still can't understand the depths of what you go through.
  43. But I'm beginning to skim the surface.
  44. And I see it more.
  45. And I'm so sorry.
  46. I'm more than sorry.
  47. I'm ready to help.
  48. To not be someone who feels sorry on the sidelines anymore.