My thoughts on interracial dating and relationships
Alrighty folks, ready for an earth shattering, ground breaking revelation that may alter the course of your life and change the way you see the world? Are you ready for it? Are you sure you can handle it?
Here it goes, let me take one deep breath, and, here it is…
It is okay to date outside of your race
We are in 2014, yet it feels oddly strange that I have to say something like this. This and this inspired me to write my own two cents on interracial dating. I know I am a gay man, so I might explain this from my perspective, but I am pretty sure that this applies to the world of the straights as well.
I’ve lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for as long as I can remember. As you may or may not be aware, the population is skewed somewhat towards the Asian population, at least as far as my anecdotal evidence is concerned. Growing up in a mostly Asian-American environment during adolescence, I found myself attracted to Asians, even marginally considering myself part of that group (I’m half Filipino, we can discuss that whole “Filipinos Are/Aren’t Asian” thing another time, please remind me). Flash forward to 2002, when first came out of the closet, most of the guys on Friendster that I was talking to at the time and considered dating were mostly Asian.
It’s okay to have preferences folks; White men can date Asian women, Black men can date White women and so on. Race shouldn’t matter when it comes to who you fall in love or spend your time with, it’s your call on how to spend those hours in your life. As for me, I prefer Asians, although now, I like to think I’ve live just long enough to be open to dating other kinds of men out there.
I’ve been around the gay interwebs long enough to know that there is a lot of shade thrown at Asians from other gay men, most do not see them as masculine or the ideal male within the Western context of what a man should be. If you ever get a chance, check out this website called Douchebags of Grindr and see what I mean. There were moments when I talked with non Asian gay men about liking them that my taste in men would be questioned. There would be a few jokes about penile size, intelligence and sexual ineptitude (or the opposite) thrown around by these guys that I seriously wondered if I was on trial here. Needless to say, I limited my contact with these people, although now, in our older ages, we’re finding ourselves being a lot more open to whats out there relationship-wise.
As someone whose social skills were lacking then (and, to a certain extent, even now), I had notions of what it would be like to date an Asian man; since I hadn’t dated until I was 23, there were a lot of different notions I had inside my head about what it would all be like. When I did start to go out with guys, my notions of what it would be like were thrown out the window. No two men are alike, even among racial groups. From this, I learned that while it’s okay to have preferences, its not okay to have expectations of others that are not grounded in reality. You shouldn’t date an Asian woman because you think that she will be “meek and submissive” or a black man since you think that he may be hyper-sexualized.
There’s that old saying “Its whats on the inside that counts.” When it comes to interracial dating, I couldn’t agree more with that tired, old cliche. You are allowed to love whomever you want, but remember that no one wants to be with someone simply because the other person has made assumptions based on stereotypes and social conditioning from media and personal experiences, I am sure you wouldn’t want to be. This goes without saying but whether its an interracial relationship or not, remember to always look beyond the race, the face and see whats inside the heart, that’s what lasts long after everything has faded into obscurity.
By the way, here’s a picture of a couple that hits close to home for me; my lovely cousin and her boyfriend. Nobody in our family has thought once about how they are of different races (at least not to my knowledge), we’re just cool that they are happy together.
As always, please feel free to comment and leave feedback. Thanks for reading