My husband and I are both white. We have three biological children and adopted a beautiful little girl -- she is African American and we are a transracial family.
All of us have experienced second looks and some very direct inquiries from time to time; some of which are completely inappropriate and no one’s business, I might add, and some that could be very destructive to our little angel.
I like to believe some uncomfortable looks and questions aren’t intended to be directed in a negative manner and probably more likely curiosity than anything else, but keep in mind standing right next to us is our 5-year-old who absorbs each and everything she hears and sees.
We try our best to learn more about African American history so when our darling is older we have a reliable source of information we can give her on black heritage, culture and discriminations, all which we know she will have questions about one day. We have a duty to help her be informed about racism and create a positive environment for her going forward in light of what she may have to face someday.
I have had a very hard time educating myself on this subject because time and time again, discrimination and racism rise to the top. It breaks my heart learning about black history when often the main subject focuses on slavery, discrimination and what human beings have gone through over the years. I pay much more attention now, which is something I should have done a long, long time ago.
At age 5, other children have already brought it to her attention that her skin is a different color and her hair is different. They ask questions and then when they see us, they get really confused. I guess that shocks me because I don’t see the difference. Like each of my children, they all have different hair color, skin tones, height, weight, likes and dislikes, but I look through their beautiful eyes, and those are my children.
My little one will tell you, “My Mamma loves my beautiful brown skin because that’s what Jesus chose for me.” And you know what? She’s right.
We already know we have challenges to face and obstacles to climb, but we try our best to live every day making a positive impact on all of our children even on the days that we ourselves find it hard to put our best foot forward. I want them to remember special moments like their first walks on a beach, learning to swim or ride a bike on their own, getting that extra special gift at Christmas, or making a team—not, “Why is my skin a different color?”
Transracial families can be Black, White, Asian, Indian and Latino, whatever ethnicity and to an outsider, it may be confusing--I understand. All you need to know is each and every one of us are a child of God. He doesn’t discriminate nor should you.