You are a girl who looks like the world," a friend once told me.
I knew what she meant: My caramel-colored skin and curly hair, the product of a '70s-era marriage between a white Midwestern woman and a black Southern man, marked me as the living embodiment of the triumph of love at the time. And my biracial heritage gave me a vantage point to see the world from different perspectives.
And even though this question was asked in last week’s Q&A, I refused to bite. Korean women were involved in less international marriages, but with more non-Asian men (% in order: Japan, China, USA, Canada, Australia, England, Germany, Pakistan). Justine Kimchi Santos asks: Keith: Hola senorita (senor? Korea is still pretty conservative when it comes to la homosexualidad (K, no more Spanish. I hear a lot of stories of Korean gays just staying in the closet for fear of being disowned by their families. But maybe you’re typing like that to show that you’re not cool with it. Up until a few years ago, it was still acceptable to hit children in school.
That’s because whatever I say will make a few Korean netizens crazy. But the numbers might be misleading, and the Korean drama mama love stories you’re thinking of are probably not what happened with most of these marriages. As for the couple shirts, not everyone does it because they think it’s embarrassing just like you! Actually, someone I know personally is gayer than Tom Cruise rollerblading in hot pants. But he won’t ever admit it (even though I’ve seen him kiss another man in a “I want to boom shakalaka” kind of way). Glenn Davies Parham asks: Keith: Aww, dude, I always feel bad for Korean high school kids. The majority of them wake up early, go to school, stay after school to study, go to more after-school programs (called hagwon) to study, go to another after-school program, go home to do their homework, finally sleep, and then start again in the morning. It was a really common, but old Korean way of discipline. Korea’s got some spice, and some people can’t handle it.
When I was 30, I fell in love with — and married — a white man who was an aspiring rock star.
He wasn't rich and his career wasn't exactly father-approved.
For 18 years, I heard them argue about my father's salary, which wasn't enough to afford my mom the lifestyle she wanted.
Eventually, those fights tore their marriage apart.
Ultimately we weren't compatible, and our marriage ended after two years. I moved to the predominantly Dominican area of Washington Heights, where meeting my white prince seemed unlikely.And although I socialized and worked with white men, the romantic relationships I entered into with them were brief and unremarkable.I didn't trust them either, assuming they saw me as a novelty, as a way to sample another culture, or as a stand-in for all black women.Many of the marriages (mostly Korean men foreigner brides) are from marriage agencies that’ll setup men with these foreign women. Helen Yue asks: Keith: I don’t think dates aren’t anything extra special in Korea. But the people that do it don’t think of it that way at all! maybe some boyfriends that are forced into it : P). My guess is because he’s afraid of his family’s reaction. there are some in rivers and you know nature-y places. But then a law passed making hitting kids in school illegal. Parents are suing teachers and schools and that’s scaring the poop out of everyone. To order something not spicy, say: 안 맵게 만들어 주세요 (an maepge mandeuleo juseyo) – Make it not spicy, please.Also, the Chinese people that are married here are usually Korean-born Chinese peeps. You might not care, but you probably know a few folks that are more traditional and don’t think international marriages are so awesome. Movies, amusement parks, musicals, museums, & dinner and coffee. It’s mostly a younger couple thing, but they mostly do it because they’re proud to be in a relationship and want to show off. But with that said, I think gay foreigners get a kind of “oh, he’s just being a wacky foreigner” free pass. .” (But of course different for every individual.) See our video on Touching the Opposite Sex in Korea. It was only recently, so some really old school teachers still have that mindset. But even scarier are kids and their smartphone cameras! And here’s some more helpful phrases just cause 🙂 덜 맵게 만들어 주세요 (deol maepge mandeuleo juseyo) – Make it less spicy, please.It reminded me of seeing so many successful and powerful black males — politicians, businessmen, entertainers — who appeared alongside lighter-skinned, sometimes white female companions. It wasn't for me, so I either outright rejected black men or begrudgingly went on dates with them only to write them off well before the dessert course arrived.Caucasian men were another problem: I didn't believe they saw me as a potential romantic partner, given that I knew so few white male/black female couples.And I spent most nights below 125th Street, in karaoke bars and at poetry readings.After living in Manhattan for a decade, I had dated casually but hadn't met anyone who fit my husband model.But in my late teens and early 20s, this didn't prevent me from assuming my own racial blind spots, especially when it came to love.Turns out that the girl who "looked like the world" had a very muddled view of it. When darker-skinned men wanted to date me, I assumed it was because they considered me a trophy for my light skin.