9 Unexpected Struggles of Interracial Dating
By now, you’d think race wouldn’t be such a big deal when it comes to dating and relationships, but you would be wrong. The struggles of interracial dating are real and — in some cases — unfortunately insurmountable.
Here are some of the biggest hurdles interracial couples may have to face.
People assume you’re not together.
It can be as innocuous as assuming that you’re separate customers at the checkout line, or something bigger like hitting on your significant other because they assume you’re not on a date when out drinking at the club.
In the bigger scheme of things, this isn’t the worst, but it can get annoying over time.
Cultural differences can lead to significant misunderstandings.
It’s easy to think that we can be open and accepting of other cultures, but differences can definitely lead to arguments and misunderstanding. East Asian cultures like the Chinese and Japanese are very big on filial piety and will put high importance on taking care of their family, especially their elders. Americans are more independent, so they may have significantly different opinions when it comes to taking care of extended family.
That’s not even taking religion into the mix! Some religions are very conservative and require tithing as well as regular community participating. Others are more lax and accepting of the secular world. These differences can become a real issue, especially when marriage comes into play.
Linguistic differences are just as challenging.
There really shouldn’t be a problem if you were both raised speaking the same language despite differences in race, but in certain situations, language barriers are really challenging and can be a hurdle for interracial dating.
One of the biggest interracial dating tips you have to remember is that when your beau says something that’s seemingly offensive without context, the best thing you can do is to clarify what they actually mean.
Languages are rich and there are certain phrases that don’t necessarily translate well. Always be ready to listen and keep an open mind.
Society still makes judgments based on social stereotypes.
Do you know what people say when they see a white man with a black woman, or an Asian man with a white woman? There are stereotypes attached to every race, asian women in a relationship with white men are unfortunately mistaken for escorts or mail order brides. The same goes for Eastern European women. Black men in a relationship with white women are seen negatively as well, given the age old stereotypes that paint black men as aggressive and violent.
Not all families are welcoming when it comes to interracial dating.
Things have significantly improved in the last few decades, but it’s a reality that a lot of families still aren’t as welcoming of other races, especially where dating is involved. They may seem “progressive” but when it comes to their children and future in-laws, people aren’t always as open-minded.
The good news is that most families aren’t against interracial dating — they may just be unused to expanding outside their usual cultural circle and are not sure how to navigate something new. In time, things will get better as parents start to interact more with their child’s significant other.
People assume it’s a relationship based on sexual fetishes.
There’s no denying that racial fetishes are real. The term “yellow fever” is notorious for this exact reason. Some people specifically go for the best interracial dating sites to fulfill their fantasies.
Obviously, not all interracial relationships are based on fetishes. It’s actually a little insulting to assume that a white man with an Asian woman is automatically attracted to her just because of her race.
More importantly, it’s really entirely too presumptuous and unnecessary to speculate on someone else’s reasons for getting into a relationship.
Insensitive racial jokes during family gatherings and other events.
What is it about family gatherings? Some nosy relative will inevitably come over and make the most awkward jokes imaginable. They somehow find a way to make an ordinary gathering awkward as hell.
Interracial couples are pretty well-versed with the corniest jokes, because they’ve seemingly heard them all. You know how people like to joke about liking Mexican tacos, or hinting about Asians eating dogs, etc.
These jokes are never funny, but somehow people keep making them. Because of this, some interracial couples may not be entirely willing to attend family gatherings, and can see these situations as awkward and difficult rather than tight-knit and enjoyable.
Micro-aggression is a real problem.
When people see interracial couples, they just can’t seem to help but make the weirdest passive-aggressive comments. People may think they’re being nice and friendly but they don’t realize that they’re being micro-aggressive.
Micro-aggression refers to the small racist acts that make life difficult or at least annoying for people of the targeted race. It’s like when someone insists on asking where you’re really from, just because you’re of Asian descent.
Comments like, “you’re very articulate,” aren’t a big deal in general, but can be micro-aggressive when directed towards black people, who are stereotyped as less educated or intelligent.
Harassment is still a serious concern when out in public.
Jokes, snide remarks, awkward looks — these issues all pale when it comes to actual harassment in public. As much as we’d like to believe that these things no longer happen, the reality is that racists still exist in society and they’re not afraid to get in people’s faces.
No interracial dating tips can help you when racists confront you and your loved one while walking around. Physical assault, obviously, is no joke but verbal harassment isn’t a peach, either. Constantly guarding yourself against these racists can be incredibly tiring and take its toll on the couple.
Despite these problems, there’s really no reason to limit your opportunities for love. If you’re looking to diversify and want to make sure that you amplify your dating pool as much as you can, the best interracial dating sites are out there ready to help you find your match.