Racist Family Offending My SpouseMay 9, 2012 No Comments
Dear Madame X,
I am in an interracial marriage. Things are fine most of the time, but members of both our families occasionally let slip racist comments. What is the best way to deal with this?
This just goes to show how much racism can be engrained in our culture that we aren’t even aware of sometimes. I’m sorry your family is making you feel this way.
You need to deal with your parents and your partner needs to deal with their parents. Find a time so you can have a private discussion and let them know that when they make these comments they are being racist towards your partner. Give them the benefit of the doubt (in that they aren’t aware they are doing this — because we don’t want to assume they are this awful on purpose) by giving them examples of what they have said. Then tell them this is unacceptable and it has to stop.
Would they talk to you this way? Would they talk to their grandchildren this way? I’m guessing not. Hopefully after this it will be the end of it.
If not, if they continue to be racist being fully aware of the consequences of their actions, then you might need to limit your contact with them to a level that is acceptable for you and your partner. Whether that be once a year at a big holiday like Christmas or for your parents’ birthdays, it’s up to you to decide what is acceptable and what you will tolerate.
I hope simply being made aware of what they are doing stops the racism — often all it takes is a bit of education as most people don’t want to be racist or have bad relationships with their in-laws. Good luck!
Madame X is a master of sex. She is adamantly pro-sex which she translates to pro-fun and pro-safety. An avid practitioner of the activity, she has also been trained in the technical dos and don’ts. No mere agony aunt, she knows of what she speaks. Send her your questions, comments, and concerns about sex and relationships here.