There are certain things you shouldn’t say, as a complete stranger to a multicultural family. I’m not overly sensitive, but it’s pretty off-putting to have random people walking up to me in the store, acting befuddled when they see me – a woman of color with fairer-skinned children. It almost makes me cringe to even say the words ‘woman of color’ because all people have color – we just vary in hue.
I am proud of my heritage, and at the risk of sounding cliche, I love the skin I’m in. I guess I just don’t understand people’s fascination with multiracial babies. It’s literally a tale as old as time. Two people meet. Other stuff happens. They have sex. Get pregnant…and poof , 9 months later a baby pops out.
Obviously I’m over-simplifying it, but a baby is a baby. Who cares what color it is?
Now, I say all this in true rant form, but I’m not talking about well-intentioned folks who know you, care about you and are truly curious about a culture or background different than their own. I’m specifically, addressing the group of people to objectify little mixed kids because they think they’re trendy .
Don’t Say This
1. Is he yours?
Not that it’s any of their business, to begin with, but yes he’s mine, and yes I’m aware he’s several shades lighter than me. Also, no I didn’t kidnap him.
Say this instead: Nothing. Don’t say a damn word.
2. She must be mixed with something or what is she mixed with?
Um, me and her dad. Thanks for stating the obvious, but we’re aware our baby is multi-racial.
Say this instead: Again, I’m coming up with nothing here.
3. He must get his color from dad?!
And you must’ve gotten your brain from a Cracker Jack box. It’s almost 2020. People shouldn’t still be surprised at seeing a multi-cultural family.
Say this instead: *Crickets chirping*
4. She’s going to have long/ good hair.
First off, what the hell is good hair? Newsflash: If you’ve got hair growing out of your head – you’ve got good hair, because it’s good that you have any. Bottom line: Don’t be the cringe-y person who says this.
Say this instead: I love those curls.
5. Mixed babies are so cute.
Aren’t all babies cute? I’m just going to leave it at that.
Have you ever been on the receiving end of these questions? Did it bother you? Most of the time I try to shrug it off because most people really do mean well. It’s normal to be curious, but it’s definitely not cool to be made to feel like an attraction at a sideshow.
If you’ve ever found yourself uttering one of these phrases, don’t worry — you’re not completely canceled…yet. All I ask is that you think before you speak, and remember “aww, cute baby” is universally appreciated. If you’re still at a loss for what to say, just say nothing and keep it moving.