- Gender and Relationships
How to handle an Interracial Relationship when your Parents don't Approve
Before I even begin this topic, let me begin by addressing who exactly my target audience is. My target audience are those of you that are relatively young, make some sort of an income, and deal with a relationship that involves parents that do not approve of your interracial relationship. Most commonly, I see that happen with people between the ages of 20-28. None the less, I am not restricting anybody from reading this because it may in fact have advice suitable for anybody of any age or race.
Another point, I would like to make is that some of these points may be biased because of situations I deal with in my personal life. I am an Indian man raised in a Christian Orthodox background (but born in America) and my significant other is a beautiful American woman, who has religious beliefs but does not know what to follow (in other words you can say she is undecided).
Please take these considerations in mind when you read my article.
Yes, your parents, they are the main reason why you are even looking at this article. Most of us are often faced with parents that do not approve of our significant other, because of race, color, religion or whatever the case may be. You are stressed, and you know that you love your boyfriend or girlfriend and you never want to leave his or her side. At the same time you don't want to make your parents upset because it is not what they wanted.
Let me start of by saying this. Your love is what YOU want, not your parents. If you don't agree with that this article is clearly not for you. Because this article is about YOU and YOUR happiness. Although you may try your best to make your parents happy, your happiness is the ultimatum and you are going to have to deal with it for the rest of your life. Do you want to wake up for the rest of your life knowing that the woman/man beside you is not who you really wanted to marry, and that the woman/man you've been longing for is somewhere out there with another man who she may not deserve? Make smart decisions about your future, for you are the one that will have to deal with it.
For those of you reading this, your parents may come in any shape, form, or background. Your parents could have been born in another country, they could have strict religious and cultural beliefs, maybe they hardly speak English or maybe they believe in arranged marriages. This of course is a difficult barrier to overcome when you are faced with presenting your significant other to your parents.
What can you do? Well you have one option, which could lead to different results. You need to stand tall, hold your ground and stand up to your parents. Yes, this may seem like a daunting task, but it is the best way to settle things. You need to go up to your parents and tell them in essence, "This is my significant other, I love him/her no matter what race/religion he/she is, and I would like to spend my life with him/her, this is how I want things, and if you don't like it that way, I'm sorry but I am going to have to go against your will". Of course this is just paraphrasing what you should say, adjust this according to your parents.
Hiding your significant other from your parents is an ultimate disrespect for him or her. If you respect him/ her then your parents must know about them. You don't necessarily need to do it right away, but you need to do it when you know your relationship is getting serious and you know your in this for the long run. Your parents are the biggest hurdle to overcome, stand up tall and have some courage, its the only way you can get things to work.
Tips for the Couples
1. Respect each others culture. The worst thing you can do is say "This thing in your culture is stupid" or do something to demoralize your partners culture. Remember that culture has been a significant part of their lives.
2. Respect their religion. This is a bit difficult to overcome for some people, but it is necessary to maintain a healthy relationship. You partner might have religious beliefs that are different from yours. Do not scold him or her because of those beliefs, it has been a part of his or her life for a long time. Don't scold him/her for going to church on Sunday or being active in the church community, that's a good thing not a bad one. If you truly respect each others religion you will let things be and love each other for who you are. Never force someone to believe in your religion, your not a missionary.
3. With all the stuff on parents that I have said before, there may be times where your significant others parents absolutely love you, while your parents don't approve of the relationship. Take the time to know your partners parents, they like you and you don't want to make them your enemy. If you are invited to family functions try to attend as many as you can. Befriend his/her family because they are great people for supporting your relationship.
4. Be patient, but be careful . If you are truly invested in each other and know that you are going to love each other for the long haul, be patient. See if your partner makes an effort to, do what ever is best for the relationship, if he or she does not then it is up to you whether or not your relationship is worth it.
5. Try not to bring up past memories that did not go so well. This is something that most couples shouldn't do regardless of whether or not they are an interracial relationship. Plans may fail and you may not like it, but for heavens sake don't bring up what happened at that time, weeks or months down the road. We know we made a mistake, but its when we repeat that mistake consistently when it becomes a problem.
6. Trust each other. Trust is the glue that sticks together all relationships. Imagine having a relationship worrying whether or not your significant other is cheating on you or doing things behind your back. If you love each other you trust each other, simple as that.
7. Always be ready to make sacrifices. Because both of you are a different kind, there can be many differences in culture or norms between the both of you. There may be things you don't like but, you need to sacrifice in order to keep the relationship going on a steady pace. Love, is not a perfect straight path, sometimes you need to take a road that you don't want to take, sometimes you hit bumps in the road, it is up to you to be ready for them.
Think of this quote taken straight from the bible:
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails." [1 Corinthians 13:4]
This verse taken straight from the Bible is self explanatory. Wrap your relationship around this quote and there will be nothing but good blessings for your relationship. Like I said before, I am in interracial relationship, and my girlfriend and I have molded our relationship around this quote and we are happily in love with each other.I will never be afraid to express how much I love her. I know that you too can reach success, all you need to do is put your mind, heart and soul to it. It takes true courage to stand up against obstacles.
Hope this article helped, If you have any questions or need advice feel free to leave a comment below and I will get to it as soon as I can. Thanks.