How My Marriage Changes People’s Opinions About Race

“What is it like to date a white man?”

I remember this question vividly as a young intern at an elementary school. My future mother in law was a kindergarten teacher, and one of her coworkers was very curious about the relationship I had with her son. I was frequently asked questions about our weekend plans, and how dating him was different than a black man.

This question caught me off guard because it wasn’t something I had spent a lot of energy on.

In the south, interracial marriage is a still a big deal. People have a lot of opinions about race. Even though I live in a small town, there is a large university here that brings more progressive thinking. Several people have told us that watching our marriage relationship has changed their ideas about race.

People see us as normal

If you were to follow us around with cameras all day, you would see that my husband and I are pretty normal people. We argue about petty stuff, we love to travel & spend time with our kids, and we sneak in dates & naps whenever possible.

Extended Family Can Fall in Love With Your Spouse

When my husband and I first started dating, I was terrified to meet his extended family. I just knew that someone in the family would have an issue with our relationship, be vocal about it, and cause an issue. Maybe I watched too many stereotypical movies about

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Maybe I watched too many stereotypical movies about interracial relationships, or perhaps I was lucky, but I never experienced issues with my husband’s family. Everyone has been so loving and kind to me, and my family. In fact, both of our parents have spent holidays together on a few occasions and everyone got along!

Being Married Doesn’t Make Us Morph Into Each Other’s Race

My husband isn’t trying to be black and I’m not trying to be white. I speak eloquently because I was taught to respect education and was corrected on my speech as a child. My husband reminds me to wear a scarf at night because he knows how tangled and dry my hair will be in the morning without it. He’s happy being white and I’m happy being black.

We accept each other’s differences & celebrate that our children are a beautiful combination of us–which is much more than their skin color.

Marrying Him Doesn’t Make Me a Sell Out

I didn’t marry him because “there are no good black men left” I married him because he’s the person I fell in love with. When my parents made me make a list of qualities I wanted in a mate, he fit the list. I didn’t choose him for superficial reasons, and marrying him doesn’t make me any less of a black woman.

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Diedre Anthony
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  • Amy April 25, 2017 10.41 pm

    “Our children are a beautiful combination of us–which is much more than their skin color.” This is such a beautiful statement.

    Love your thoughts on interacial marriage. ☺

    • Diedre April 26, 2017 10.39 am

      Thanks Amy!!

  • Dominique May 26, 2017 05.30 pm

    This was really well written and embodies my relationship with my husband as well:

    • Diedre May 31, 2017 03.15 pm

      Thanks Dominique. I’m so glad that you can relate.

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