Prejudice and stereotype on international couples
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Old 01-15-2012, 01:36 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

Hi all!
We are an international couple. Have been together for 8 years now and three years ago got married.

When we met, I sort of sensed that I would have issues with the mentality of some members of my family and friends. After so many years, I must say that I found my dad, mom and brother extremely mature and never brought that issue up. Unfortunately, some other members of the family and also some friends, at times, couldn't help it.

You know, stupid stereotypes like all the Italians are this, all the Americans are that, all the French etc.

Let me make myself clear here, I'm an entrepreneur and I'm not the kind of guy who takes crap from anyone. But still, after so many subtle episodes I'm just fed up.

I'm considering moving to my wife's country. This way, comments, if any, would be referred towards me and not my wife. And I don't give a damn.

Has anyone had similar experiences?
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Old 01-15-2012, 01:49 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

You will run into mean spirited or simply ignorant people everywhere. If you move every time you find them you will never live in one place long.

What are the chances of your business doing well in her country? Will your backgound negatively affect your ability to do business there?

I've lived in many countries and have run into bigots in all of them. And I've run into a lot of nice people in all of them.

Surely you can come up with some response to the bigots to shut them up?
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Old 01-15-2012, 03:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I suppose its not you with the problem but your wife. If she cant take it then move.
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Old 01-17-2012, 11:57 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

You're both right, I guess.
Actually a move would be a step forward also about our jobs.
I'm the one who's resisting it because I feel like losing the match to the stupid and to the mediocre!
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Old 01-18-2012, 06:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I think that is a very sweet and selfless gesture. Do you all live in an especially oppressive country? For example Nigeria is extremely hostile to homosexuals so I would absolutely move out of that situation. Is your relationship legal and the issues mostly social?

If so, I agree ignorant people are everywhere. Ironically my husband and I were thinking of trying to find jobs in another country (we're in the US) to avoid these issues. But they will be everywhere. It hurts but your wife will have to learn to not give these people the power to hurt her. They don't feed, finance, or f*ck her so she has to learn how to let it roll off her back. Their opinions don't matter (be they strangers, family, friends, workmates). WHY do these people feel comfortable voicing their opinions to/about your wife?

My husband and I were refused seating at a restaurant once and that hurt. I cried the whole way home, where we ate what seemed like the worst meal ever. I then had to decide to not let strangers ever have that much power over me again.
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Old 01-18-2012, 10:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

White South African Russian (ex) Orthodox Jew naturalized American. Wife is White South African French (ex) Orthodox Jew naturalized American. Living in the Southern US. We kind of stand out. You tend to ignore it. Our families, such as they are don't like each other and talk trash about the others nonstop. As far as catching the side eye from strangers or getting mumbles - I did not expose my kids to that whenever possible. We've been refused service, rental cars, hotel rooms, etc. in the US, the UK and France. To be honest most of the crap we received was in the western modern world from white people. We lived in West Africa for a while and no one ever bothered us in the least. It was the European whites there who treated us kaffir.
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Old 01-18-2012, 11:42 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Agree, if you scratch the surface of 'civilized' countries you'll discover that, deep under the skin, medieval approaches to foreigners or women still resist.
I can be a tough world for un-conventional people. I like sometimes to figure out the social patterns of the situations I encounter. After having been at college, university, the military, the scouts and local communities I figured out that often people sort of 'gang up' against those people who don't fit the conventional pattern for any reasons. Might be the colour of the skin, Religion or simply because they think with their own mind. When the pack understands that you think with your own head (not necessarily being against the herd), then you are seen 'different'.

Having understood that, in many situations, when I start recognizing the 'herd signs' I very clearly make them understand that the opinion of the herd to me means jack s_ _ t! It usually works.

Very sorry for them.
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Old 01-20-2012, 12:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I am from Asia and my white husband is from the deep south of USA and we're living in his hometown. We are married for almost 15 years and are blessed with 4 most beautiful interracial children. I think the best that comes out of a interracial couple are the kids will get the best of both world.

Yes, I first have to say that in the beginning it is not easy. I feel homesick - for my family, my culture, food, language etc but since I chose to marry and follow my husband, it is sink or swim for me. I know many women who hated it here and want to go home. But I have to be mature about it. If his family or friends do not understand my accent or my culture, I try to explain and even learn to laugh about it. I have to make friends and the only way is to approach them. I need them, they don't need me. So I tried to adjust as much as I could. I also have a very supportive husband that tries to learn my culture and let me decorate the house or raise the kids as Asian as I can. It is a give and take.

I think another thing is to help your foreign spouse find as many other people that are same nationality as her. She will feel less homesick and now she will have friends that understands what she is going through.

My kids sadly got teased too by their schoolmates. They were all born Americans but many people asked where do they come from, if they are adopted, if they eat dogs, cats, snakes or other human beings ???!!! Kids can be so cruel. I told my kids to ignore ignorant people. I, like most Asians were raised with just eating chicken or fish but thanks to some international cooking show, Asians have bad reputations that is simply not true. My kids have support system from other American born Asian kids, so they can learn to handle people better. Hope this helps.

I feel like I am an 'ambassador' of my people to this country. I have to educate people who don't know anything outside of their 4 walls. I have people thinking that Asia is a country (it is a continent) and there are like hundreds or thousands languages and dialects there. Now folks are amazed that my kids and I can speak other lauguages and want us to teach them. They also say that they like our hot and spicy food. Also, after knowing me for so many years, I have many true American white, black and hispanic friends. When they talk to me, they see my heart, not my skin color. I know, once they know the real me, they will be less prejudice against the next Asian they meet. My husband and I are like pioneers for all other white/asian couple in the future that might comes along. :-)

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Old 01-20-2012, 05:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

Quote:
Originally Posted by ICouples View Post
You know, stupid stereotypes like all the Italians are this, all the Americans are that, all the French etc.
That's 3 nationalities but you're a couple?
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Old 01-20-2012, 12:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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We are leaving our apartment partly because this is a very racist area. People vandalized my husband's car twice after I moved in and there are white women who love to harass blacks by screaming out the window. Rich old polish people whisper "czarny" when blacks walk near them.

This is a very high level of bigotry, especially for Canada. We are relocating in March.
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Old 01-24-2012, 11:51 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Sometimes that's the best way out, when you cannot take it anymore.
Even if it is like losing a match really, you cannot really beat thousands of people when they have grown up with these sort of stereotypes instilled in their f...... brains.
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:10 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

I tell myself that other people's ignorance is not my problem.

When people gawk at us as a mixed couple, we kiss each other and wave happily. The stunned looks are priceless.

Our apartment complex is run down with no amenities, not even an elevator. It has been paid off for decades and it was supposed to be torn down. However, the developers did not receive city approval to build condos so these places have just been left to rot. We have a transexual who likes to lounge about the courtyard at night with her penis out and a mentally ill senior citizen who likes to hit on twentysomething women. Ewwww....can't wait until March 1st!

I tell my husband that he must have been high on crack when he chose this place. This is where we fell in love, first had sex and decided to marry each other. We are excited to move on to an apartment that has enough storage space for two people...condos are much smaller than rentals in this city.
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Old 01-31-2012, 02:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Prejudice and stereotype on international couples

I have been living in the US or within US culture for 17 years and I can't say that having been born in a different country/culture/society than my husband has caused me any trouble, not with his family and not with mine. I have adapted to US "standards" very well, you wouldn't know I wasn't born here.
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