My name is Shawn B. and I’ve been dating my white girlfriend for a year now. We’re both really in love and everything’s going on well in our relationship except for her parents. Oh, don’t get me wrong, her parents aren’t against our relationship. It’s just that every time they talk about black people they refer to us as ‘your people’.
I don’t like it! It’s very condescending. How do I address this with them without hurting my relationship with my girlfriend or the chance of marrying her one day? Do you think they’re racist? I cringe every time they say ‘your people’. It’s like they’re separating blacks from whites.
Hi Shawn B,
Welcome to the KolorBlind family! First off, let me stress that your girlfriend’s parents are NOT RACIST. If they were, they would not approved of your relationship with their daughter. However, a lot of people suffer from ignorance that sometimes comes across as being racist’. You’re probably the first black person they’ve been around and they’re struggling with not wanting to offend you by offending you and the black race.
I would definitely have a discussion with them. Explain to them that it isn’t polite to address any race or ethnic group as “your people”. Tell them some might even construe it as being racism. I’m sure they’ll make a change for the better after you address it. Also let them know it’s OK to say ‘black people’ – it’s not a curse word.
P.S. Shawn B. used the Contact Us form to ask for advice. You can too if you need advice.
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