Microaggression in Interracial Relationships
The privilege is real.
Kaleah, why are you turning to your blog to write about relationship problems?
‘Cause its my fucking blog.
Thanks for reading.
I just feel like I need vent for a moment. And something tells me I need to publish it publicly.
As a disclaimer: I love my partner. Thats why we are partners. All relationships have problems. People just don’t always talk about them. I’m not attacking my partner. I’m simply venting about the woes of being in an interracial relationship.
I’m publishing it because one day when I’m dead and gone, my super-multicultural grandkin will probably want to know if anyone in their ancestry experienced the same issues.
Yes, child. I’m here.
Being in an interracial relationship is hard.
Privilege shows up everywhere. Especially in arguments.
It’s hard, emotionally, explaining to someone that you feel disrespected for them to say “Well, that’s not what I meant. Don’t take it that way.”
Umm… it doesn’t matter what you meant. It matters how I feel.
Now, I can take responsibility for my perception of things. We are each responsible for learning how to respond and not react to the world around us. I am working on giving everyone the benefit of the doubt. Assuming positive intent has been a work in progress for me over the last 10 months.
When I say that something offends me and I feel disrespected, I would love for my partner to actually take what I just said into consideration.
When I was a child my Mother used to fuss at me for being disrespectful. I remember thinking “I didn’t even say anything to disrespect you.”
Sometimes it isn’t what you say, but how you say it. Sometimes it isn’t about your intention it’s about your lack of attention. Not being aware enough to notice when something you said could have been offensive.
Let’s take into consideration intention. Maybe you are trying to be funny. It’s not funny if it’s at your partner’s expense. Period.
I got yelled at for being disrespectful. Now I’m extra sensitive to being treated in ways that I percieve to be disrespectful.
Reminder, we are all just traumatized children in adult bodies.
So, I set boundaries. If something seems disrespectful to me, I make it known. I’m not picking fights and starting arguments. I am simply naming my frustration.
We are all co-creators of this world we live in. So at some point we have to take responsibility for the situation we are in.
I would like to say that I am diligently working to heal my childhood trauma and break these generational curses.
So why did you bring up race?
Because it’s a factor, and we need to stop pretending it isn’t.
Microaggressions are a thing and I don’t have time to argue with anyone. I’ll just give an example.
Sometimes when I express to my partner (and other people who don’t consider themselves of color) something that makes me feel disrespected, I get told not to take it personally.
“I didn’t mean it like that, don’t take it personally.”
If you have to tell someone not to take it personal, you should probably reevaluate what it is they are truly upset about. You might be misuderstanding them. Put your ego on the shelf for a moment and take a look at the situation with some compassion and empathy.
Microaggressions are basically everyday insults, delivered with or without intention, that carry a hidden and demeaning message.
The problem with microaggressions is that it’s hard to bring them up to the perpetrator without them feeling like you’re attacking their self image. It can be difficult to accept that even though you wouldn’t consider yourself racist, that you have some unconscious bias.
News flash: we all have it. In people of color its been identified as internalized racism. We do it too.
That doesn’t make it okay.
Alright Kaleah, you’ve stated the problem, what’s the solution?
Talking about it. Bringing awareness to it. There’s a quote that says:
“People have a hard time accepting facts when they don’t fit the frame”
By frame, we are talking frame of reference.
Often you’ll hear:
“Well, I’ve never heard/seen/experienced that before. I have a hard time believing that.”
I’ve never experienced a belly bloated from hunger but I don’t deny that it happens.
So lets make a frame.
Have you experienced microaggressions? Tell me about it! Raise your voice! Help me build this frame so more people can accept the facts.
Have you been the person to deliver the microaggression? How did you react when it was brought to your attention? How did you find a frame that fit the facts?
I’d really like to hear your opinions on this subject.
Love, Light, & Learning,