As the world continuously progresses and starts to become more “woke” to the oppression and systematic racism we are faced as minorities, we see more multicultural families and couples begin to rise. Being in a “mixed relationship” has been seen as taboo and sometimes we still get crap about it. My experience as a woman growing up in a proud Black household is that I will fall in love with a man who resembles my father and have children that resemble my siblings.
All of that changed, when I brought home a Colombian man and over time, my family started to see that love is love. My interest in my boyfriend is not a phase, he is not just some Latin guy, and he will not make me any less proud of my Black roots. In fact, he has become more WOKE because of me sharing my personal experiences and different facts pertaining to the history of Black Americans.
That’s the beauty of multicultural relationships; we are faced with challenges on the daily. Our cultures are very different, but the willingness to learn and grow makes us stronger.
Here are some of the things I have learned and experienced while being in a multicultural relationship:
I’ve Learned to Accept Change
Not every surrounding or cuisine is something you will be familiar to. My Colombian man eats pineapples on his burgers. It’s called Colombian style! I tried it myself and it was beyond delicious. I’ve learned to accept that soccer is a big deal in Hispanic culture (but every sport is a big deal to him). I have also learned that Colombians are passionate about their Salsa music and Cuisine. Kind of like how Black Americans are with our soul food and our Soul music. In a sense, we have identical qualities. This is what accepting change has taught me, we are a smaller world than we thought.
Learning to be Comfortable When Another Language is Spoken
I know plenty of people who have grown up in diverse communities are comfortable, but there are some parts of America where they feel intimidated when someone speaks their native language in front of them. I learned to accept that sometimes his aunt or mother might say something in Spanish. Did it make me uncomfortable at first? YES! I thought she was whispering something about me. Then I learned, it’s none of my business and they were most likely talking about something else. You have to accept that there will be another language spoken around you and that’s okay. Unless it’s the nail shop, they are definitely talking about your crusty toes.
Family Reunions Will Definitely be Uncomfortable
Look, not everyone in their family is modern. There are some aunties and grannies that hold onto their “pure bloodline” idea. I have learned that just because you two don’t see your ethnicity, doesn’t mean they won’t. They will say things like “I like your people *insert your race* but I always thought he would end up with a *insert partner’s race* kind of girl. You have to shake it off and hold that confident head high. This is the real test if you can’t handle this environment, then get out! You have to remind yourself you love him and not his racist remark making mother and his “I’ll only speak to you if you speak Spanish/Italian/ Whichever Language ” auntie.
Lastly, you learn to love your partner for who they are. Not for who raised them or their culture. You learned to accept every ounce of difference because these differences make up this beautiful human who you end up loving. Don’t ever forget this part.