Bad Girl's Guide

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Vixen's Guide to: Inter-racial Relationships

You cannot choose who you fall in love with ~ love is a fickle mistress and when Cupid's bow strikes, it doesn't pay attention to race, nationality or creed. For those of us who adore ALL men, irrespective of race and nationality, this guide will probably come in handy as well.

The world has become a diaspora of every single race, a global melting pot of different cultures and nationalities. The beauty of this is that there is less racism and prejudice than there was say...50 years ago, however it does still exist. Here are some tips to help deal with the attitudes that might stink up our new romance.

Initially, you have to examine your own personal prejudices. Even though you might consider yourself an open-minded and unbiased person, bear in mind that alot of prejudices have been inadvertantly steeped into our character ever since birth via the media, our parents, the community, school and our peers. You have to know what your own prejudices are concerning the race of your new love and deal with them before you can even acknowledge the full depths of your love.

Recognize that it is going to be hard. Love is never easy, and dealing with ignorant people on a consistant basis is bound to drive even the most patient saint into a tizzy. Strangers that you don't even know might come up to you with sarcastic comments, and you are bound to face censure in some shape or form from your family and friends. Be prepared for this and recognize that you are in it together.

Build a strong foundation. If your relationship is not really strong to begin with, it won't withstand the storm that interracial dating might bring. You need to focus on the important stuff, building a friendship as well as a relationship, with open communication and lots of trust. Recognise that you are both in this together and be prepared to face all the hurdles together. Do everything you can to nurture and strengthen your relationship as you would any other relationship. Talk about your feelings and your attitudes, connect and share through whatever you are going through.

Be willing to compromise. There are alot of things in my culture that is hard for someone not raised in it to understand or even accept. However, they are important to me and need to be understood by my partner. You might have to over-extend yourself in the interest of compromise and realize on both your parts that it is a sacrifice that you are both making. Be willing to learn about the other person so you can fully get where they are coming from. Issues like familial ties (aka nosiness), religion, cultural beliefs and practices etc, all are essential and you both have to be willing to be flexible.

Deal with your family and friends first. The main reason alot of mixed relationships don't last is because the couple could not withstand the pressure and lack of support from their families and close personal friends. You do not realize how much you need their approval until the one time you don't have it. To avoid this, here are some tips to keep in mind. Do not spring the fact that your new love is of a different race on the same day you bring him home to meet your parents. Remember what happened in Guess Who? Alot of the embarrassment could have been avoided if she had simply told her parents that Simon was white before she brought him home. You might think that your family will be ok with it, but keep in mind that prejudices are inbred and need time and acceptance to deal with them.

Let your friends and family know as soon as you can to give them time to get adjusted to the idea. And don't apologise about it!! Apologizing in the beginning makes it look like you have something to be ashamed about...and you don't! When talking about him, allow them to realize that you see him as the man you love, first and foremost before you even bring in the race issue. Hype up his positive traits and bring to their minds the fact that you feel he is your dream guy. The day before I brought my new boyfriend to meet my parents, I sat them down and had them watch My Big Fat Greek Wedding. It helped thaw them and was a great discussion opener.

Your inner circle is important to you, and most of them might be quite accepting of your new love. They might have reservations but mostly not on a racial issue. Keep the communication lines open and let them be able to voice their opinions. Their comments might be grating, but it's not coming from a mean place, they just want what is best for you. If they are your friends, they will realize that you are going to do whatever you want anyway and they will come to support you. It might even be easier than you think.

Ignore, ignore, ignore. When all else fails, let this be your mantra. Focus on the person you love and let your love grow. Ignore the stares, snippy comments and judgements that come your way. Focus and revel in the love you have for each other and the positive traits that this relationship brings into your life.

Enjoy him. Savor him. Love him.

Culled from Baggage Reclaim

Posted by Vixen @ 1:15 AM :: 5 trainees letting it rip!

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