By: Amy Wise
The other night my hubby and I went to a birthday celebration for one of his friends. As we were walking into the restaurant, my third hand –I mean, my Blackberry –lit up. It was an email from my agent. She wanted to know if I would be interested in being interviewed about being in an interracial relationship. She received a query from someone who was writing a “how-to” on having a successful interracial relationship. They wanted tips and advice on “surviving” this type of union. Of course I said yes, after all, it’s not only my life, it’s what I write about! But afterwards, it got me to thinking. How interesting that we need tips and advice on how to “survive” in a mixed race relationship. After 19 years together, and 18 years of marriage, it’s all so natural to me. Survival? Tips and advice? That just sounds odd. However, if I look back on all the struggles and trials and tribulations that we have gone through, well then, it makes all sorts of sense. That’s why I still write about our marriage, because even though we have it down to a science, I know there are a lot of couples out there that are wondering, is this really going to work? They are dealing with family issues, societal issues. Me, this is how I deal with it: if you don’t like us, that’s okay. We like us and that’s all that matters.
It still boggles my mind that in 2011 this is even an interview topic. Really. We really need to get over it. The funny thing about “us” is, we are just a couple. We are like all the other couples out there, the only difference…our skin colors.
So let me ask everyone this question. If a blind man met us and we became close friends without ever sharing our “differences” with him, would he know we are a mixed race couple, or would we just be a “regular” couple to him? Hmm, something to ponder. If you don’t see the difference, is there one?
Just like everyone else, we start our day together, we live our lives together, we make plans together, we raise a family together, we laugh together, we cry together, and we grow old together. Read that sentence again. Are we an interracial couple, or just a couple? It’s all so simple, yet society still makes it so difficult. We are in love, we are married, we have been together for many years, yet people still question us. Why?
I’ve said it before and I will say it again: nobody is born a bigot. Racism is taught. Let’s stop teaching it. The blind man only “sees” our hearts –what can we learn from him? How about loving this life together? One heart, one mind, one love.