Growing up mixed race can be both wonderful and terrifying, no matter what the races are, culture is incredibly different, and growing up with contrasting parents come with its baggage. I’m sure all mixed race people would agree with me. Although being mixed can be incredibly beneficial. So whether you’re mixed race yourself and are looking for something to relate to, or you are just curious about the struggle, welcome! These are my 10 signs you grew up in a mixed race family.
You Know How To Code Switch
Whether your parents are still together or not, there’s going to be a time when you’ll have to visit your great great aunt twice removed on your mum’s side, or your dad’s first cousins nephew. And there’s no way you’ll be able to speak to them in the same way. Growing up in a a mixed family gives you the tools to be able to change the way you speak in terms of vocabulary and tone, who ever deny’s that is lying!
You’re Racially Ambiguous
If you’re like me, the fact that you’re racially ambiguous, is absolutely fine, in fact I kind of like it, its mysterious. However the difficulty comes from the other humans on this earth, that like to constantly question your ethnicity. Oh and the dreaded ‘what are you’ is never what you want when you’re having an evening cocktail on a Friday night.
Family Holidays Aren’t That Fun
In my personal experience, I’ve always loved holidays, I love going to new places and experiencing new cultures. However, I remember my friends at school whining in jealousy at the fact I was going off to an exotic Caribbean island for the summer holidays. What they didn’t know was that I would spend most of the time visiting old family members or baby sitting the little ones, in hotter than the sun, no a/c homes. It’s not exactly basking in the sun sipping sangria.
You Have Hair Issues
Depending on your mix, this might not be a problem for you. But if you’re mixed with black, and literally ANYTHING else, its likely that you’re going to have a lot of hair struggles. Growing up with a parent with a completely different hair texture than you can be a real problem, especially as a child. Because along with you growing up trying to figure your self and hair out – completely alone, your parents are likely trying to figure it out too, and probably have no idea what’s going on and how to sort it out.
You Don’t Really Fit
Growing up, finding a friendship group and place where you belong is difficult enough. But when you’re mixed, kids can be mean, and you’ll likely not relate to anyone. You might be faced with the dilemma on who you should hang out with, and will they understand you?
People Have A Lot of Opinions
When I say people I mean everyone. Whether its people who stop you in the street to ask about your ethnicity, the old racist trump supporter at the pub that isn’t over excited that segregation was abolished, or your actual family, your own flesh and blood. Everyone has traditions and does things differently, and the people within your family will likely have something to say about the way the other side has done something. Its just your job to play mediator.
You Know About Food
This is actually a massive plus, maybe the only major plus growing up. But growing up mixed race often means you’ll get to experience lots of different foods, especially at family occasions. You also save a lot of money on take aways, because you can just cook it at home. Plus, you get to impress everyone at dinner parties. My favourite thing about this is just knowing about spices and herbs. We don’t do bland!
Going Out With Parent’s Can Be Awkward
Whether it be to the doctors, dentist, shopping, dinner, it could get slightly awkward. the general public don’t tend to think that its possible to be a different race to your parents, and assume they’re your sugar daddy, or you’re being abducted. Or god forbid, the way too friendly Uber driver.
You Were Disciplined In Two Different Ways
This is completely up to how you view this. However I like to view this as a plus. I mean yes, sometimes you’re punished twice for something, in two different ways, because your parents need to show their culture through punishment. Having said that, its even more likely that you’ll get out of punishments because both parents have different views and what’s a big deal to one, may be nothing at all to the other!
You Have Family Members That Aren’t Super Happy You Exist
Our generation is generally quite accepting. However our great aunts and uncles and grandparents were unfortunately from a time that’s.. well.. quite frankly, racists as f*ck. So whether it be a weird look when you walk through the door, or the odd comment over Christmas dinner, its incredibly likely that SOMEONE in your family isn’t completely over joyed that two different races intermingled to pop out a little mixed race you!