Dear Asshole (Yes, You),
Whether you have openly said that you don’t think I should be with someone who is a different race than me, or have looked down in us with judgmental stares your bigotry has not gone unnoticed. I’m not writing this letter because you have hurt my feelings. I’m writing this letter because the year is 2016, and it’s time to move past this archaic narrative that it’s wrong for people to date outside of their skin tone.
My dating someone of my race is not a form of rebellion against my parents or a “stage” that I’ll grow out of like the terrible two’s. I fell in love with my significant other for their personality, intelligence, and sense of compassion for other people. They could have been white, brown, black, green, or blue and I would have fallen in love with them over and over again. I fell in love with a PERSON, not a skin tone. On another note, my partner dating me does not mean they harbor some internalized self-loathing for their race or that they are confused about who they are either. It just means they happened to fall in love with someone of another race also. By suggesting that I am only with my significant other because of their skin tone being different than mine and vice versa suggests that it’s okay to use dating as a way to fetishize another culture. Guess what? It’s not.
To the people who insist that my life will be much harder for not only myself but my future children because I love someone who doesn’t have the same level of skin pigment as I, yes, being in an interracial relationship can sometimes be hard. While most people are very accepting and don’t care, it can sometimes feel like we are under a microscope or part of a social experiment. Did you know that interracial marriages are 10% more likely to end in divorce? Do you want to know why? Because people like you suck and make relationships and marriages even harder than they already are. Since you more than likely have brought up my non-existent children with my partner, here’s all I have to say to you: my kids will be loved and cherished as much as they would have been loved if they were either 100% white or 100% black. While laws have changed (I still can’t believe interracial marriages were illegal in many states) I know opinions can take longer. However, I realized long ago your stares and nasty opinions are no reason for me to question my relationship. I can sleep at night knowing that by no means is my relationship “disrespecting my culture” or more particularly, YOU. Can you say the same thing about your racism?
It’s 2016. This shouldn’t be an issue that we still have to discuss, but it is. It matters because some people feel like biracial relationships are a sort of betrayal. It matters because some people feel like an interracial couple marrying and having a family is a sin. It matters because it shouldn’t anymore. I don’t love the person I love for their accent, nationality, culture, or skin tone. I love them because they make me happy, give me unconditional love, and respect me. While our race factors into who we are as a person, it does not make up the whole picture.
While I would never suggest that my dating a person of a different race has helped “solve racism” I would hope that to the people who looked down on us holding hands when we walked Into the restaurant to eat can feel a twinge of guilt when they see how in love we are and how much we don’t care about their opinions as we eat our meal in peace. I would hope that my extended family and family friends would get over themselves and stop telling me how disappointed they are in me as they see me stand at the altar and marry the love of my life. I am not color blind. I know my partner has had to experience a completely different set of struggles than I have for their skin tone. My being in a biracial relationship has given me an opportunity to me more honest, more open, and most of all more aware of what goes on every day in the world with my partner. Like any healthy relationship, mine has made me a better person.
It’s unacceptable to automatically discount someone because of their race or ethnicity. Believe it or not, people have merit beyond their physical appearance. By judging and alienating us, you are only hurting yourself by not giving yourself the chance to get to know two really awesome people. So, thank you for teaching me that I don’t need validation from people for my life choices. I’m eternally grateful to all the individuals who have helped put this into perspective for me. There is no room for your ugliness and racism in our pursuit of happiness.
A Girl Who’s In Love With A Great Guy