1) What is the specific configuration of your relationship (e.g. WM/BF, AM/WF, etc.)?
Your acronyms cause me great distress. I choose Option C: White Male Me/Mexican Female Her.
2) How is everything going?
Really, really fast. I’m enjoying it, but it’s dizzying. Nothing to do with race, though.
Language can be difficult at times, especially over the phone. Like in Roderick Femm’s relationship, her English is better than my Spanish. We can usually get whatever point we need to make across in some combination of the two languages.
I’m not sure if this is what Rod (heh) meant by “this can actually be a good thing”: for me, a great side effect of the language barrier is that neither of us feels pressured to choose exactly the right word so as not to step on feelings etc. We’re happy to get any word that has something recognizably close to the intended meaning. We’re both going to school for each other’s languages, so this will probably change over time. But it actually makes things easier, in a way, not to have to worry about saying the wrong thing. I mean, if one of us chooses the wrong word in the other language, the other will understand and we’ll probably look it up in a Spanish-English dictionary.
3) Do you feel that your not being of the same ethnicity is an impediment to building a successful relationship? How much of one??
Er, sort of. I hesitate to bring her home to the rents. They’re not racists; my mom doesn’t give a hoot as long as I’m getting female attention, and my dad is happy that I’m getting a lot of practice with my Spanish. But, well, they both grew up as white Midwesterners in a bygone era, and they’ve got particular ideas about the workings of life. It’s hard to explain, because I know they won’t hate her and I know they won’t be rude to her either, or even think intentionally harmful things about her. But she’s really, really nervous about meeting them, and honestly I can’t blame her. I don’t know how long it will be before they meet.
I’ve already met a lot of her local family. They’re wonderful, funny people, and almost all are better at English than I am at Spanish. A couple are hard to follow, but I’m working on it. Anyway, I think I made a pretty good impression.
4) Did either of you have a specific preference for partners of the other’s race, or did it just happen on its own?
I don’t know about her. I usually have racial preferences, which shift around and change places gradually throughout my life. Hers has always been up there; I think her skin tone and hair, both ‘highly ethnic’ qualities in her, are godly and a half.
5) How do your families feel about your relationship? Has anyone voiced any opposition??
Well, I sort of answered that question above, but I’ll expound upon it.
My parents don’t have a problem with it, but I think they’d rather I bring home a nice Jewish girl. Neither has met her yet, knows what she looks like, etc. My mom just started pronouncing her name correctly and can’t stop asking me questions about her.
It came up in the matter of conversation with my aunt in Utah that I was dating a Mexican girl. She politely said something to the effect of “Oh, that’s interesting/surprising” but the look on her face told me she would probably be praying for me to escape my Evil Abomination Job-Stealing Foreigner Girlfriend. I couldn’t give half a flip, though.
Most of her family seemed to take kindly to me when I met a lot of them on New Year’s Eve. Her youngest brother is dating a white girl and her sister married an Iraqi man, so there’s precedent.
6) Do you sense that people make assumptions about you based solely on the fact that you’re in an interracial relationship (e.g. mail-order bride, marriage of convenience, status seeking, etc.)?
If/when we marry, I think that will be the case, and I think it shall prove to be a complicated/complicating issue for a variety of reasons. We’re not married, though, and really we only ever hang out with two like-minded mutual friends so they’re not likely to think those things about us.
7) Do you feel that your children, if you were to have them, would be at any disadvantage due to their being ‘mixed’?
The two of us are hotter than hell; the children will be utterly gorgeous. IME, prejudices aside, a lot of people find mixed-race people more beautiful on average. Scientific American ran an article several years ago that showed that the scientifically-derived universally appealing female face was of mixed race.
Good-looking people get the long end of the stick 9 times out of 10 if you ask me. Our kids are destined to be real lookers IMO, so I’m not worried.
But prejudice has a way of striking anywhere at any time, especially among kids. I think I’ll want to get them to learn some kind of self-defense as early as practically possible. This isn’t something we’ve discussed, though.
8) Do you have any other comments that you would like to add to the above?
Yeah. We don’t really get stares or anything, and we’ve never gotten comments, even the drive-by kind. Part of that is that we haven’t been going out long enough that we would’ve run the gamut of experiences of interracial couples, but I think another significant part is where we live (San Diego). People are pretty accepting of just about any lifestyle choice you can make here. A lot of things that would really turn heads in a lot of other places, wouldn’t elicit passing curiosity in this region of the country.