*Sidenote: I will be using the terms Black and White in place of African American and Caucasian. If that is going to offend you, I apologize in advance. It is not meant to.
I met my now husband, Anthony, 10 years ago. We met through church and like every good relationship, we started out as friends. Of course, the friendship grew into something more over time. We have been together for over 7 years now and just celebrated our 3 year wedding anniversary!
Over the years, many people have asked us “What is it like to be in an interracial relationship?” In short, it is just like every other relationship, but with a little twist! Let’s lay a little groundwork here. Interracial relationships are those between two people of different races. For example, my husband is Black and I am White. Interracial also refers to mixtures of other races such as White and Hispanic or Black and Asian.
I DON’T SEE COLOR
So many people have asked me, “Oh! So, you like Black boys?”….. *eyeroll*
When I first met Anthony, my initial thought was not “Look at that cute black boy!” His race did not pop into my head as something that stood out to me. But, do not get me wrong when I say that I did indeed notice it. See, the color of his skin is a part of who he is, but it is not all that he is. In addition to being a Black man, he is also kind, caring, faithful, a Man of God, and so much more. His race does not define who he is; it is just one part of who he is.
Once people find out that my husband is Black, the usual reaction is “Oh! I have a family member who is black!” or “That’s cool! I have black friends too!” These just make me giggle! See many people say that they don’t see color, therefore the color of my husband’s skin doesn’t matter to them. But I disagree. I DO see color and that’s why the color of my husband’s skin doesn’t matter to me.
I find myself constantly seeking God for patience, when it comes to racism. It’s everywhere and you would be surprised where it comes from. People have told Anthony that he is “racist against his own kind” because I am White. My own family members wouldn’t even let Anthony step foot on their property because I “couldn’t find a White man.”
When Anthony and I first started dating, I used to be bothered by the stares that we would receive at the movie theater or the mall food court. It would burn me to my core to see such hatred and disdain from people who didn’t even know us. To this day, we still receive looks and questions, especially now that we have a child together. Whether it’s the cashier splitting our groceries down the middle or the waitress bringing two separate checks on date night, we encounter moments like this almost everywhere we go. When faced with these, we do our best to have grace and remember that not everyone thinks the same way we do and that some people do not embrace differences. And don’t get me wrong, I do have days where I really wish that lady would stop staring at me from across the restaurant and that guy wouldn’t shoot glares at my husband. But we have learned to not be bothered by people’s assumptions about our family because we have confidence that our marriage is one put in place by God. And that is all the assurance we need.
One of the biggest things about being in an interracial relationship is being able to see the world through the eyes of someone of another race. Being married, both Anthony and I get to experience life through each other. I have been able to get a glimpse into what life is like for him as a Black man. Same for him with me. We have learned so much from each other. When situations and touchy topics arise concerning race, we are able to have meaningful conversations and educate one another on how we see things. Honestly, it’s such an eye opening experience and so amazing to see how people of other races experience the world.
Every relationship has its ups and its downs. Every couple fights. Every couple laughs. And every couple experiences life together. Our relationship is no different. It is not without its struggles and it is not without its joys. Being of different races is a huge part of what makes our relationship special, but it is not the only thing that makes our relationship special. At the root of it, we are just two people who love each other and that’s all that really matters.
With love and grace,
If you have any questions or are genuinely curious about anything I discussed here, comment down below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!