Disclaimer: We don't describe all the ins and outs of racism on this page, there are already many resources that do this. Instead, we uncover what it means for multicultural couples and help them navigate the current climate.
RACISM AND MULTICULTURAL COUPLES
"Nearly 1 in 10 people living as part of a couple were in an inter-ethnic relationship" reported the UK Census from 2011.
The new UK Census will be conducted this year with updated figures, but we can already guess that this ratio will be a lot higher. Nevertheless racism continues to be a persistent issue faced by these couples.
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Racial discrimination is nothing new to ethnic minorities.
But for multicultural couples, this can also be surfaced in the form of Relationship Stigma, which is the experience of discrimination as a couple, in addition to individually-experienced stigma.
Depending on where you live in the world, relationship stigma can be felt more in certain countries than others where diverse couples are common.
Here's a list of articles and recent studies that have investigated relationship stigma.
✍️ ‣ Relationship stigma and relationship outcomes in interracial and same-sex relationships | Research study
Pivotal research that connected relationship stigma with mental health. In this study of 399 interracial couples in the US, those who felt their relationship was stigmatized by their friends reported depressive symptoms and greater anxiety.
✍️ ‣ “A Little More Ghetto, a Little Less Cultured”: Are There Racial Stereotypes about Interracial Daters in the United States? | Research Study
Compelling evidence that moves the research forward by uncovering present-day racial stereotypes that men held about about black and white women who date interracially: kin, low class, slut, and social climber.
🎧 ‣ Mixed Up: Confessions of an Interracial Couple | Audiobook (Audible)
"A must read book that will change the way we see mixed race couples and make us question our own entrenched beliefs." Written by Tineka Smith and Alex Court
You may have heard the statement
"I don't see color, I just see the person"As well-intentioned this statement may be, it can also be problematic.
💻 ‣ What I Hear When Someone Says “I Don’t See Color” | The Everygirl (Article)
Making the case that “I don’t see color” can be perceived as “you don’t see me” “you don’t hear me”, “you don’t understand me”.
💻 ‣ Why The 'I Don't See Color' Mantra Is Hurting Your Diversity And Inclusion Efforts | Forbes (Article)
"Accepting this reality will allow each of us to not only recognize the stereotypes we have adopted and normalized but to also make conscious steps towards changing them."
Colorblindness can also show up in the media. A recent example being the new Netflix TV show Bridgerton.
‣ Bridgerton’s Most Controversial Scene Showcases The Series’ Mishandling Of Consent And Race | Junkee (Article)
"Colorblindness in the media is the practice of presenting race as the least important element of a story or a person... More often than not, it’s a tactic used to avoid discussions of racial experiences, by ignoring race altogether."
💻 ‣ How 2020 changed interracial relationships | GQ (Article)
"After the tragic deaths of the summer and another sad renaissance for the Black Lives Matter movement a lot of interracial couples found themselves talking about race for the first time"
💻 ‣ 4 tips on how to address race in interracial relationships | Insider (Article)
Another thing to note is simply dating someone outside your race or ethnicity doesn’t automatically mean a person has transcended all forms of subtle racism. Partners need to proactively do their own anti-racist education and work, in order to dismantle all the layers of interlinked systems shown in the image above.
Resources to aid Anti-Racism | Google Doc
A very comprehensive document of direct action that can be taken from the UK to support the Black Lives Matter movement, and resources for being anti-racist.
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15% of our profits are donated to The Runnymede Trust an independent think tank that conducts important research to challenge race inequality in the UK.