What if I am dating someone whose parents do not agree with interracial dating?
“Obstacles created by interracial dating were the worst moments of my life. It was very sad and depressing time. I felt frustrated and there were times that I thought nothing would change…”
Asit and Karma are both born in the USA, Karma’s background is Swedish, English, German, Irish and Asit’s background is Indian. They have been dating since September 2009. Their story started at a party, where Asit saw Karma looking at her phone and asked her: “Are you just going to stand there, look at your phone and ignore the rest of us all night?” At the end of the night, he asked her for a phone number.
What do you like about each other?
Asit: Karma has a generous and good heart, she is kind to people and open. She is beautiful on the outside and also on the inside. She always thinks of other people.
Karma: Asit is very passionate about his work, he is smart and intellectual, he is confident and gives great advice, he loves his family and friends, he cares about people, he takes good care of himself and me, and he dresses well.
How did your family accept your partner?
Karma: I knew that my mom would not have a problem but I thought it was still kind of funny and her first question was: Is he good looking? I said don’t worry, he is very attractive. She welcomed him with open arms.
Asit: My mom didn’t want to meet Karma. When Karma came over she asked Karma not to date me. This was when we had already dated for over a year.
Karma: It was at the Indian celebration and I put a lot of effort into the occasion, I had appropriate clothing and jewelry for the party. The next morning my mother in law walked in my room and asked me if I see her God? I told her I was Christian. She said that that’s her point and asked me not to date her son. I told her that she needs to talk with her son. I had to be strong and I told her: “As long as your son wants to be in a relationship with me, I want to be in a relationship with him.” In that moment I knew it wouldn’t be an easy road for us and it would take a lot of courage, to stick together as a couple.
Asit: I was mad at my mom but I really didn’t know what to do. I felt like this battle between my mom and me was hard because I really love my mom. I felt like I was placed in the position that my mom didn’t want to support my decisions as to what I wanted for my life. I didn’t even tell her about the wedding, I stopped talking to her. I couldn’t have a relationship with my mom while dating Karma. It was really important to me that I find someone that I love. How can I have a loving relationship with my mom if she doesn’t support me?
Karma: it was hard for me to see it and to see Asit go through this and have all the walls build up between him and his mom.
If you knew their reaction ahead of time, would you do something different?
Asit: No, I decide to introduce Karma to my mom because I really care about her. I wanted to see how my partner would interact with my family. It was important to me.
When did you decide to marry what was your family’s reaction?
Asit: I didn’t tell my mom and she wasn’t invited to the wedding. She was mad. But why would I tell her if she wasn’t going to be supportive? It was not good enough that she is my mom, I wanted to support!
Karma: my family was really happy
How was your wedding?
Karma: At the wedding, there was a lot of tension. At the Indian ceremony, my mom picked a very sweet gift for my mother in law. Things didn’t really go the way they should go. My mother in law refused the gift with the words: “No, give it to poor people.” Later on, Asit’s sister thanked my mom for the very thoughtful gift. At the end of the ceremony, my mother in law didn’t bless me.
Now that you are expecting your first baby, is your family excited?
Karma: Asit’s parents turned around and his mom is very excited. She had a beautiful baby shower for me. Last week, she asked me how I am doing and how is the baby doing. So I responded with a nice message. There is still a battle if we do things our way or the Indian way (instead of my mother in law way) Asit’s family values are important to me and I want to balance it and introduce our child to multiple cultures. The balance needs to come from Asit and me!
What advice would you give for couples that have to deal with an interracial dating?
Asit: Do not be afraid to get help from friends or a therapist. Make sure, that you understand that this is not an easy process.
Karma: Know your partner really well, do not be afraid to take the risk. Love and trust your partner!