After I was presented with this topic I thought it would be a piece of cake to write. I’ve dated all kinds of multicultural and multiracial women; therefore, I have a life time of experiences to draw from, right? Wrong. It wasn’t until I really thought about it that I realized maybe I’m not as indifferent about interracial relationships as I assumed.
After all, I grew up in the suburbs so as far back as I can remember everyone was dating everyone irrespective of race. Then again by today’s standards my youth was filled with crazy occurrences; MC Hammer was rich, our president white and Whitney Houston could still sing just to name a few. I figured, apparently incorrectly, that eventually we would move beyond the need to even converse about interracial relationships.
Ironically, although interracial dating and as a byproduct, interracial marriages have increased over the years it still remains the exception to the rule, only accounting for less than 15% of new marriages. By and large everyone is still marrying everyone of the same race. Instead, the main transition, for some of us anyway, has been the change in our acceptance, attitudes towards and opinions of interracial couples.
I recognize that just because my vision transcends color lines does not mean others see beyond the monochromatic scale. As long as I am never caught in Arizona without my passport, the ramifications should be minimal. Besides, I can’t change the opinions of others but what about myself?
I date women I’m attracted to and whom I think I can be happy with. Based on my dating patterns, these decisions are not dictated by race. However, when I’m out on a date with a Caucasian, Asian, Hispanic or other woman, some times I feel like I receive a stink eye or wrinkled forehead or two more than I would if I was out with a woman of my race.
I wonder if what I think I saw was real or imagined. Does the fact that I’m even concerned prove that I’m not as progressive minded as I pretend? Is it possible that I am only noticing because I’m looking harder for such signs when I’m with these women? If true, does that say as much about me as the person who may or may not have been stink-eyeing me in the first place? These questions are as theoretical as they are rhetorical.
I believe you can be proud of your race or even choose to only date within your race, while being accepting of others decision not to abide by this same belief. One day, this may be the status quo. Some argue, although I disagree, that we’re already at this point. I don’t know if there will ever come a point where we will all become colorblind, hold hands and join in song like the Who’s of Whoville until the hearts of all the racist grinches of the world grow three sizes that day but I also don’t believe that is necessarily a “goal” we need to achieve.
If a silver lining is even needed here, it is the fact that if I am conscious of race, at least I am less concerned with it than my parents, and hopefully, my kids will be less worried than myself. Furthermore, maybe one day introspective blogs about the feelings invoked by interracial dating might be a thing of the past. One day, but not today.