I’ve written this post and rewritten it and started it over at least three times now, until finally I resolved to just write it.
And I realized that trying to capture the experience of being in an interracial marriage and part of a multiracial family is too complicated and personal to do justice to in a single post.
And, fortunately, I had underestimated my friends, none of whom batted an eye when they found out Hubby was black.
(At least, if they did, they hid it very well.) The truth is that when we finished grad school and moved to a new town, I was aware that the fact my partner was black would affect how people saw me.
The truth is, it is one thing to be outraged as a white person at racism.
Plus, let’s face it – people have certain stereotypes about white girls who date black guys, and those stereotypes aren’t very flattering. The truth is, I’m more concerned than I’d like to be with how people perceive me, so I developed this tendency to mention – sooooo off-handedly – that my husband and I met in grad school and that he works at Impressive Employer and that we’re married.
The truth is having children has motivated me in a major way to examine my own perceptions and subconscious reactions, because I want my kids to feel proud of who they are and their community(s), and that means recognizing and fighting my own stereotypes, however ashamed and embarrassed I am of them.
As I think about raising my sons to be healthy, responsible, caring individuals, I realize how much the stereotypes and racism inherent in our culture have infiltrated my own psyche, like some stealthy virus.
Realizing that fighting this fight for your family and your child means fighting it for every person of color.
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