So today I have to rant.
It’s probably a rant of everything that is building up but I never say anything.
My dad is from Vietnam and my mum from Australia which makes me ‘half Vietnamese’. I have many friends who are of Asian descent and others who are of Australian (European) descent (none…
“Omg, you’re whasian?? Whasians are soooo pretty!!!!!!”
Um. Okay. This is a tiny thing, but a frequent comment. “MIXED RACE PEOPLE ARE SO GORGEOUS. BLAH BLAH BLAH.” The only real problem with this is… are you saying I’m pretty? Or are you saying I’m supposed to be pretty? Or are you saying, why, if I’m whasian, am I not pretty? This comment really confuses me. I never know whether to be flattered or offended, so I just sort of ignore it altogether.
“Lol, that’s ‘cause you’re Asian.” I’d never had an issue with racism until this past year, my first two semesters of college. … This is probably because I used to hang around Asian people most of the time. Oddly, when my Asian friends say things like, “LOL YOU’RE SO ASIAN,” I laugh and take it as a compliment.
At university, on the other hand, most of my friends are white. And when they say things like, “Lol. You’re so Asian,” I get this little pang in my stomach. I know they don’t mean any harm, but I subconsciously take it as an insult. The comments got to be so frequent that they really made me think…
What do other people see me as?
Do they just see me as Asian?
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being Asian. What I find weird about the whole thing is, like I said in a previous post, I don’t think of myself as Asian. I don’t think of my race at all, unless someone brings it up. So, that someone even considers me to be one race or another is just… unfathomable to me. Because I don’t see myself that way. It’s simply outside my realm of perception… and causes me discomfort.
But, whenever it comes up in conversation, I just sort of brush it off and change the subject.
While I’d love to talk about other mixtures of races, I will only speak from personal experience. I’m wasian, whasian, half, hapa, mixed, whatever you’d like to call me. And, honestly, I have never felt very insecure about my heritage. Yes, I grew up in the U.S., but I am close with both sides of my family. While some wasians who live in the U.S., like two of my cousins, ignore and shun the Asian side of their heritage, I have come to embrace it. The high school I went to was highly populated with Asians. In fact, a good number of my close friends from that school are Asian — Korean, Chinese, and Vietnamese. In college, most of my friends are white.
This brings me to another frequently asked question.
“So, do you consider yourself more Asian or more white?”
For some mixes, this is probably a question easily answered. For me, I always found it strange. Fact is, I consider myself neither Asian nor white. When I think about it, I consider myself a mix of the two. However, it’s not like I think about my race all the time. I can’t see myself unless I look in the mirror. In my mind, when I think of me, I am not Asian. I am not white. I am me.
Hello, Internet. Me again. Here’s something else I’d like to get off my chest. I’d love to have a dialogue about this topic — if you’re interested, hit me up.
“What are you?”
These are words almost anyone of mixed race should be familiar with. The lips from between which they escape may belong to a stranger on the subway, someone you have just met, a friendly acquaintance, a fellow student, a teacher, a co-worker, a boss. The query isn’t laced with malicious intent. I know that. I have always known that. And usually willingly quench the asker’s curiosity and give the requisite answer. I’ve come to accept it as a question I will be faced with at some point in almost every relationship I form with another person — no matter how fleeting or how significant.
It never bothered me when I was younger. I grew up in a very diverse community, and, like I said, I hear this question all the time. But sometimes, these words become irritating. Sometimes, I don’t feel like answering such a poorly phrased question.
“Um, I’m human?”
“Hah, yeah, but I mean, where are you from?”
“Oh, I’m from this city in this state in the USA.”
“No, I mean, where are your parents from? Like, what is your ethnicity?”
“Oh!” Here I feign surprise. “Well, I’m half Chinese, half white American.”
“Ooh, that’s exotic. Is your dad the white one?”