T O P I C R E V I E W
Member # 42492
posted 05-30-2010 12:43 PM
As I have mentioned in other posts, I am half Caucasian and half Hispanic.
I’m rarely recognized as Hispanic because I am very light-skinned, even more so than most Caucasians. However, many people take note of my dark hair and eyes, and the shape of my face, and ask “What are you anyway?” However, other family members are quite dark and it is very obvious. As long as I can remember, especially since I started school, my parents have encouraged me to lie about my race. We live in a part of the country that is pretty racist against Mexicans. And while we are not Mexican, that racism often overflows to Hispanics in general. I know that they’re just trying to protect me from discrimination, but I really hate being dishonest about it. When I first started dating my ex (who was from an upper class Caucasian family), my parents told me not to tell his parents that I was part Hispanic, and if they ever asked to tell them that I was Italian (which is true, if you go back about 5 generations), because apparently that’s a more “respectable” race. As it turned out, they were really great people, and I really grew to dislike the fact that I didn’t tell them the truth. My older brother married a Caucasian woman, and before the wedding, apparently she was really scared about her parents meeting select family members, because she hadn’t told them that my brother (who is light skinned like me) was part Hispanic. They divorced a few years later. I don’t know if it’s true, but my parents blame the divorce on her parent’s racism, and believe they encouraged her to end the marriage. I just don’t want to do it anymore. I mean, if my brother and his ex had been honest, he would’ve found out about their attitudes right away, and if you ask me, it’s better to end things early than to go through a stressful, costly divorce. Plus, being Hispanic is a part of me, and one that I consider a very interesting part. I don’t want to feel like I have to hide it. Have any of you ever had an experience pertaining to this? Do you think it’s OK for parents to encourage their kids to “closet” their race?
Member # 47264
posted 05-30-2010 01:56 PM
I am half Cuban and half Caucasian and I can empathize with your situation since I, too, am lighter than the rest of my family. Recently I was filling out a job application online. Some of the questions I thought were a little strange, one of which asked me if I or my family with whom I reside had been on unemployment or food stamps in the past six months. A few questions later, I found myself looking at a page with only two questions. One, asked me if I was female and the other, asked me if I was Hispanic. Now, all of these "strange" questions gave me three answer choices: yes, no, and I do not wish to answer this question. Living in South Carolina where racism towards Hispanics is alive and well, I paused to think about how I would answer this question. Should I be honest and check yes? Should I lie and check no because I can pass for white? Will checking yes somehow keep me from getting the job? But what if I was hired and somehow my boss or coworkers met my family? Or should I play it safe and answer I do not wish to answer this question? Questions like these ran through my head for a good twenty minutes. But then I came to my senses. Why should I lie about who I am? My ability to perform well at a job depends not on my origin but on my drive to succeed and the effort I put forward. Now, I don't know your family and I am not saying they are bad people but I strongly believe that nobody should ever hide who they are and nobody should ever convince or push a person to lie about themselves. Embrace your heritage and your culture. Be proud. And if somebody doesn't like that? F*ck 'em.
Member # 47266
posted 05-30-2010 02:30 PM
I have to agree, don't be ashamed of your heritage.
I don't look like my own background. I'm Metis, part Irish and part Native Canadian, though I look more Irish then native (though my brother looks more native then Irish). Sometimes you will have to deal with crap from either side. I've had to deal with the 'you don't look native enough to be native' because I'm so pale skinned. But like Khaetlyn said, if somebody doesn't like it, screw 'em. They aren't worth your time.
Member # 47037
posted 05-30-2010 11:22 PM
ugh, those survey questions for online applications! They shouldn't have the right to ask you that! It's irrelevant.
Anyway, you shouldn't be ashamed of who you are! you're absolutely right you don't want to be with someone who wont love you for who you are anyway