Last week, yet another case of white women not minding their business, went viral. This time, a white woman called the police on a black man, Corey Lewis, who was babysitting two white children, whom she assumed he kidnapped.
I don’t feel like I need to explain why this is beyond ridiculous and so incredibly racist, but it did bring up some familiar experiences for me, as a black person with white parents, that I wanted to discuss. I am constantly having to defend, justify and explain my adoption and relationship to my white family members, to strangers who should be minding their damn business.
Having my family ties questioned because we are not the same color, is a very common and exhausting experience. In 2018, it amazes me that people are still are unaware that diverse families exist. When I see a white parents with brown kids, my very first assumption is adoption or an interracial marriage. I do not understand why that idea that every family isn’t monoracial, is so hard to comprehend for the majority of y’all.
A lot of y’all who do this pretend that you’re worried about human trafficking, which of course is a real issue, but you don’t actually care about that. You’re just nosey and most likely racist. If you actually cared about trafficking, you would know the signs to look for as well as actually doing something for real to combat it, but you don’t. Families hanging out together minding their own business is not even remotely what human traffickers do. Traffickers ain’t out here going to Six Flags with their victims, please shut the fuck up with that excuse. Y’all just use that when you get caught and called out on your prejudice.
The individual morons on the street who stop and ask or make a comment, don’t bother me as much anymore. I just troll and embarrass them. However, there have been many times that I and others in my family have denied services, confronted by the law or harassed because we don’t walk around with “Hey we adopted black kids/My parents are white” tattooed on our foreheads.
Just last week, I was confronted by a coworker who assumed I was lying that my white brother is indeed my brother. I had been discussing Mission Impossible: Fallout with a friend, and it has always been a joke that my eldest brother looks like Tom Cruise. So I pulled up his photo to show my friend. This other coworker who was in the room, thought I was trolling because he’s white. She attempted to shame me, saying things like “that’s not funny”, “you’re so horrible, dont say stuff like that”.
I let her go on embarrassing herself , then pulled up a family photo to which she promptly switched gears to talking about how lovely adoption is and how she wants to adopt another race one day…
*major eye roll*
I’ve been having these types of experiences my whole life.
One of my earliest experiences was when my siblings and I were pretty young. My mother was watching us and babysitting my cousins (adopted from Taiwan) at the house, when a police officer shows up. After a confused discussion and my mom using her white privilege and bit and getting pretty angry at the officer, we discovered that a neighbor (white of course) had seen us playing outside and assumed my mom was running an illegal daycare out of the house, so she called the police.
I’ve said before that literally all of these instances of white woman calling the police could be avoided if they just treated others like human beings. How about you walk across the street and say hello instead of just assuming there is an illegal day care because kids of different races are having fun?
Another time I tried to go get my sports physical and was denied insurance because the nurse knew my mom was white and assumed I had forged an identity to get on her insurance. Which doesn’t even make sense, but okay sis.
Or when I was dog sitting for my mom who was on vacation, when her house was broken into. I found the back door bashed in and called the police who promptly saw my mom’s photo (ignoring all the family photos that show 3 black kids) on the wall and assumed I had broken into the house.
Or how about the time I graduated from college and my mom decided to treat me to a little pampering day before my honors ceremony. Everything was fine until my mom, who had wander down the street to do some shopping while I was getting my nails done, came back to pay and the woman refused to let her do so, looking back and forth between us, with that all too familiar “how can this be possible” look on her face. I would have just left without paying but my mom is far too nice to do that.
I don’t even know why anyone needs to be related to pay for someone’s services and why you would care? You’re getting paid regardless. If I wanted to walk in that nail shop and pay for some random lady getting her nails done, why is that an issue? It’s not, it’s just the fact that people like to use their position of power to be nosey assholes, instead of minding their own business. Had my mom walked in and asked to pay for any other white person in the shop, this whole exchange would have never happened.
I could go on and on with more experiences, but you get the point—this happens all the time and for what? Why are we constantly expected to explain our existence to you? When we don’t we “have an attitude” or are considered suspicious. I’m tired of defending my adoption to people, and I am not going to do so nicely. Leave adoptive families alone.