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Pet Sins July 2000

East parents say 'Marry White, not Black'

In my conversations with various East Asian acquaintances, they have mentioned their parents attitudes towards interracial dating. Unfortunately, there seems to be recurring trend in parental attitudes towards their children dating non-whites:

A young Japanese engineer worked as an expat in the US. Whenever he went back to Japan, his father would joke, "When are you going to bring back a blond girlfriend?" But one day, his father took him aside and said, "Whatever you do, don't bring home a black girl."

A Chinese woman from Singapore claims that her mother said, "When you choose a marriage partner, the first choice is white, the second choice is Asian, but never black or Mexican!"

Chinese woman born in USA to China-born parents recalled that her mother told her, "You can marry anyone of any race except black or Mexican."

A Chinese American man born in Hong Kong said, "My brother's wife is white American. My mother has no problems with that. As to What she will think of me dating a non-Chinese woman of color? Native American may be ok, but definitely not black.

I have yet to meet someone whose parents don't comform to this negative 'norm', but then my circle of Asian acquaitances is quite limited. But am I being overly optimistic in believing that there are many Chinese or Japanese parents out there who don't feel this way?

L.P.

Comment from 'Chinese American woman'
You know how Chinese parents are. They say it is ok to marry white but not black. We've learnt these attitudes from an early age. It is hard to fight it.