Racial Trauma, Asian Power

Today I got triggered when I learned that my most recent crush is dating a white man. Beforehand, because I have no chill whatsoever, I asked him outright over text if his boyfriend is white. I then texted my best friend “Bri if his boyfriend is white… I may ask for a literal 3 minutes during our [next] phone call for me to scream.”

Lo and behold, my queer person of color sense proved correct and he texted me back saying that yes, his boyfriend is white. On one hand, I could not have cared less, because men are irrelevant to my life and he can date whoever the heck he wants to and I had predicted this outcome with my closest friends anyway. And yet, after I got that text, I fell into such a funk; I felt sad and angry and disappointed all at once. What is making me feel this way? I asked myself while completing my therapy notes and listening to a live performance of BlackPink’s “Whistle” and “Playing with Fire.” I reflected on my feelings on my walk down the streets of Washington D.C. after work and realized the core issue: my past experiences with racial trauma.

This random unfortunately gorgeous, sweet, thoughtful Asian man dating a white guy really does not matter to me much. Yet, when combined with all my past experiences of racial trauma, it sent me into quite a tailspin. When I reflect on past experiences of racial trauma, I mean:

1) seeing a white woman who tone-policed me and micro-aggressed me win a teaching award I also got nominated for

2) having multiple white teachers in high school doubt and dismiss my writing abilities, such as one who said that because I forgot to fill out one question on one form, I “did not know how to read”

3) experiencing my mother, a Vietnamese immigrant, terrorize me for wanting to act more feminine because doing so would disadvantage me in a society that values white male stoicism and masculinity

4) sitting in silence as a white male supervisor yelled at me for gently questioning one of his decisions and telling me my gentle question stemmed from my unresolved issues with white authority figures, even though I have had multiple healthy, supportive, and amazing relationships with other white authority figures

5) witnessing multiple close friends deprioritize my friendships with them after they started dating white men

These examples comprise only a subset of the racial traumas I have experienced. When I thought about these memories on the metro ride back to my city, I actually started to tear up a little. Part of me may have felt sad about my most recent crush and his beautiful eyes fixating on his white boyfriend over me, though I think I more so felt exhausted from the weight of it all. I felt my body sag into my metro seat as I felt the weight of always fighting racism and white supremacy. In that moment on the ride back home, I thought to myself: wow, it would be so much easier if I just threw in the towel and gave up right now.

After letting myself soak in those emotions of self-pity and anguish, I felt strength come back into my body, almost as if Jeni’s had come out with an ice cream flavor called “fuck white supremacy sorbet” and I had eaten three scoops. I thought about Audre Lorde’s iconic quote “If I didn’t define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten alive.” This quote reminded me of the people of color I know who have internalized white supremacy: the ones who tell their students of color to stop expressing their anger at racism, the ones who feel that they have to achieve white metrics of success (e.g., prestigious awards) to matter, the ones who attribute beauty with whiteness and not much else. I thought about this quote and came to a few conclusions.

MyriamGurba from wikipedia UGH a queen

I want to take a moment to also thank Myriam Gurba, author of the iconic memoir Mean, for inspiring me to be vocal and irreverent about my social justice views. Ya’ll should read Mean right now.

I’m not a quiet model minority Asian American. I’m not a desperate gay Asian who wants a white gay man’s love or approval. I’m fucking Thomas [LAST NAME REDACTED (lol)] and ya’ll can deal. I validate my own emotions and empower myself to honor the people of color who have come before me, like my grandmother who encouraged my softness, the black feminist writers like Audre Lorde and bell hooks who taught me so much, and my supportive professors of color, like the Asian and Latina professors I met in undergrad who opened my eyes to how much racism influences mental health.

I’m Asian and I’m powerful. I’m gentle and compassionate and furious. This past summer I joined forces with a black woman and confronted the all-white staff at my psychology externship about one of their assessment measures containing a racist item, an item they later removed after years of students complaining about it. I am in the process of preparing my dissertation proposal, a study that examines how Asian Americans can fight internalized white supremacy in regard to body image. I’m dedicated to providing socially just and anti-racist therapy. I’m sure I have a lot to unpack and to learn and I’m not ever gonna quit.

Several months ago, I went to a conference where a queer Asian man told me how he got his heart broken by another queer man of color who left him for a white guy. I tried to make space for this man’s emotions, because I appreciated him and his work. When I compare his experience to mine right now, I feel a sharp distinction, and I feel so grateful for my closest friends, my feminist books, and myself, because I know my self-worth. My self-worth extends way beyond any man who would choose a white guy over me.

For any people of color or black people reading this post, how have you coped with racism and white supremacy? General reactions to this post? I will respond to comments on my latest post tomorrow as it is getting pretty late and I wrote this in a fever pitch, whew. I had another post written to publish tomorrow but I’ll save it for next week. Until then!

18 Comments

Filed under Personal, Society

18 responses to “Racial Trauma, Asian Power

  1. x.w

    Omg!! This post has makes me think so much. I am so moved to see that you and your friends have made some differences in your department. I remembered once when I was in the u.s., taking a speech and pronunciation class, I found that one video was shown in class was very disrespectful towards Asian students. I talked to the teacher, who is also the head of the speech/lecture department (not sure about the name of that department). I told her about how i felt about the video, and her other teaching methods. After two times of long discussions, she told me that she couldn’t change her class, if I was uncomfortable then I don’t have to watch the videos in the future class but that’s all she can do. And she said after more than 25 years of teaching, I was the first to complain about her class!! She is second generation of immigrants, both of her parents being from Japan. As you know, I am Chinese. But we couldn’t get each other at all. That’s fucking sad and frustrating. I decided not to go to her class anymore. The students advisor, my roommates, and everyone of my friends thought that class was so problematic. But the school couldn’t gave me a refund and i was just so tired of everything I decided that was the end of the story. What I hate most was the core value of that class: she believes that in order to be heard and understood, you need to sound “white”, and have body languages that are representative to that “standard American English”. Because this is a white dominated society. I told her politely that I didn’t agree. And that’s not what I signed up for. But what i really wanna say is : what?? Are you out of your fucking mind ??!!! (in fact, my english was fluent and my accent was minimum according to my friends. I don’t care! I wanna sound like a person speaking english as a second language and my purpose was to give a speech confidently without changing my own demeanor. I am not an actor trying to look like an American-born Chinese. That’s my value, but she couldn’t get it. She insisted that the “acting” was necessary)
    I think the racial related matters are complicated. Identities are complicated. when it comes to dating, I question myself a lot and I have been with white dudes before. Is this real or I am attracted to this person more because he is white? Does he like me or he is more curious because I am a woman of color? I talked to my therapist about this as well but we didn’t have a conclusion. But I understand why you wanna scream. I wanna scream too. 😛 I don’t know if I can ever have a conclusion, but so far I always question my own motivation first.
    Xin

    • Xin I’m so sorry you had that professor who was complicit in white supremacy! It sucks that she wasn’t more receptive to your points. I’m proud of and inspired by how you advocated for yourself though and recognize that white American English shouldn’t be the metric we hold everyone accountable to. It’s iconic that you reclaimed your time by exiting that class after you realized the professor wouldn’t be more understanding.

      Also your self-awareness and self-questioning is important. I appreciate how you highlight the complexity of the matter and how it’s difficult and ambiguous at times, like it’s not like, this is definitely internalized racism and that other thing is definitely not internalized racism. I think self-awareness may be one of the first steps of excising internalized racism. Thank you for your thoughtful comment as always, I always love hearing from you on this blog. (:

  2. Cat

    My first thoughts: you are so strong and brave and self-aware. It’s really inspiring and I’m happy you’re doing what you are to make safer and more inclusive spaces for people, whether they’re your peers, clients, or people around you.

    My second thought: I don’t want to be the person that says “not all white people”, but if you don’t mind, let me explain. Like you, I’ve had issues with racism, whether outright or microaggressions, my whole life. And I don’t know if this also happened to you, but I felt even further marginalized when the acceptable idea of “Asian” was Chinese/Japanese/Korean when I was growing up, and I felt like my culture wasn’t enough to really feel “Asian”, especially when I moved from California to Virginia when I was younger. I recognize these things, but my partner is a cis-gender while male. And something I really wrestled with was the idea of “am I further betraying my culture? Am I buying into white supremacy and colonialism? Am I part of the issue?” And some people would say yes; a lot of issues for the Crazy Rich Asians movie casting was around how Asian a person was, calling out Henry Golding for being only half-Asian despite growing up in Malaysia (and his mother being indigenous!), Constance Wu for dating a white man, etc. But I know my family culture is particularly toxic and hurt my mental health a lot growing up. My parents were emotionally (and sometimes physically) abusive, and while I still maintain ties with them, it’s only with therapy and many emotional boundaries. While my relationship with my grandparents (particularly on my dad’s side) has largely been good, there are still underlying ways that they continue to hurt me, my parents, and the rest of my family through manipulation, emotional abuse, and traditional expectations. But this was all normal for me, and I didn’t see the ways that it was hurting me deeply until I got to college and went into therapy for the first time. Talking about it with my other Asian friends… we were all dealing with this kind of abuse in one way or another. There was kind of an unsaid pact that we’d support each other, but there was no other solution than to just bite the bullet through it. So I didn’t think there was another way to live. My husband is the second white man I’ve dated (the first wasn’t a serious relationship to me), and seeing the difference of his family dynamics vs. mine was really jarring. I worried a lot about what this meant for me, for us. I talked to him a lot about this, and we tried to wade through our relationship carefully and being mindful of how I deal with certain issues and traumas. We had to navigate my dad’s innate fear of white men, knowing he experiences being beaten in LA as a non-English speaking Vietnamese refugee high school, especially as we discussed marriage. We still talk about what my family and cultural tradition means, and what parts are important for me to pass on and what hurtful parts I don’t want to. And through it all, having an “outsider” in my family situations can usually diffuse the typical familial tension, and puts me in a position where I’m not the scapegoat. What I’m trying to say is (in a very long-winded way) is that sometimes it does take someone from the outside to help us feel safe. Whiteness doesn’t always mean ignorance, and I think it’s most important to be aware of privilege and what you can do with it. Unfortunately, not always the case, but is can be (and you don’t always know what that white person is to your crush!)

    Last is a bit of a question for you: I’ve moved back to California recently, bringing me closer to my family and my cultural heritage. I’ve been thinking about trying to actually learn Vietnamese, better research my family history, talk more with my relatives that I used to only see once a year (at best). I’ve been thinking a lot about Asian diaspora movements, especially Vietnamese diaspora, but I don’t know what to read/who are the speakers in the movement/how to better educate myself. Do you have ideas of where to start? Is this something that you’ve thought about, too? I was reading this article (https://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/playwright-who-lost-mother-plastic-surgery-malpractice-explores-impossible-vietnamese-n1137401) and have been tackling trauma in therapy, so the idea of my mental heath/personal experiences tying to a larger cultural phenomenon has been on my mind. Sorry if this is too personal or anything!!

    • Hi Cat, thank you so much for your vulnerable and thoughtful comment! Not too personal or anything like that, and I appreciate your willingness to share yourself in this space. Thanks for validating my sharing as well and for all of your kind words.

      Thank you for sharing your story about your family and experience with therapy and what you’ve navigated. I think the issue of abuse in Asian families is complex and I’m not gonna pretend that I can speak definitively on the topic, just from my personal experience, clinical experience and research experience. While I do think that there are Asian cultural norms (which is so broad, because there are so many different subgroups within “Asian”) that encourage hierarchy and patriarchy, I think it’s important to acknowledge that those norms also exist in white families too. In fact, I think it’s important to critically examine the role of whiteness in contributing to the hardships and abuse within Asian immigrant families in the United States, like how the pressures to conform to whiteness affect Asian families. For example, a guy I had a crush on at one point wrote a compelling essay about how his Asian immigrant father was pretty mean because he worked in a predominantly white setting, where he had to grind himself to the bone to get a higher status, which ended up affecting how he treated his family. I’m not condoning the man’s treatment of his family at all, just pointing to how white supremacy can affect Asian families.

      I’m appreciative of your questioning within yourself your complicity in whiteness, because I think all POC do (especially Asians in some way, because we are often held up as the model minority to prevent solidarity with black and Latinx groups in the US). I know I definitely have to interrogate my own internalized whiteness and white supremacy. I’m so glad to hear it sounds like you’ve been able to navigate your relationship with your husband thoughtfully and that you’ve been able to unpack your family dynamics in therapy. In terms of relationship stuff, I think it depends on what you (or anyone wants). My sense is that we each have to define for ourselves what we want in partners, friends, etc. I know for me, when I think of a partner or close friend, I think of someone who can elevate my social justice aptitude, someone who can both hold me and care for me and also challenge me to be better. Frankly, at this point in my life, I don’t think I’ve met a white man who’s capable of that. Yes, whiteness may not be synonymous with ignorance, and at the same time whiteness is inherently given power within white supremacy, so a white person will always have power in a relationship, no matter how “with it” they are. It reminds me of an iconic tweet that once said that white people cannot be experts on racism, they can only be experts on being racist, which I largely agree with. So yeah I recognize I may not know what this white guy means to my post-AWLOB crush, though I’m fairly confident that I could do better, so at this point I’m setting a boundary that I ain’t gonna invest time in someone who can’t see that.

      Thanks for sharing that article! Whew tbh I’ve wanted to learn Viet but have always thrown my time into my therapy practice and research instead. >_< I'm glad you've been thinking about how what you talk about in therapy connects to greater cultural phenomena. I think for me I've just been reading more Asian authors and getting more into Asian American activism and mentoring Asian students, fighting white supremacy and showing solidarity with other POC/Black individuals and movements, etc. Would be curious on your suggestions. And thanks for prompting this super long comment. (:

      • Cat

        I love that you brought up that these toxic values exist in white supremacy as well, and how there have definitely been cultural norms of POC having to work much harder to get the same recognition as someone white. I’ve never thought of the white supremacy impacting other cultural traditions (and maybe these underlying ideas of toxic masculinity/lack of vulnerability), but it’s definitely good food for thought as one thinks about Western colonialism in typical mainstream history. (Especially for Vietnam, as a large portion of written/current culture stems from French colonialism! Many layers. It feels like so much to unpack, sometimes, but I know it’s so so necessary)

        A white person can never be an expert on racism – yes. That is so so true. And it’s a really good reminder for me as I try to navigate whiteness/social responsibility to be aware, it’s still not the same as a lived experience, and therefore deeply important to continue to raise the voices of the marginalized. I think for white and privileged people, it’s important to recognize privilege and use it to give voice to others instead of taking that space as a “woke” person.

        Haha I feel that… I’m not sure about you, but I grew up speaking Vietnamese with my grandparents before I went to American school, so I still understand the majority of spoken Vietnamese. But I’m lost with reading and writing, and I find myself wanting more and more to properly learn. Unfortunately there wasn’t really a means in central PA (where I moved to after college), so it feels a little like the right time to try now that I’m in an area with more POC and a real Vietnamese cultural center. Growing up (and a little now, too), I had a hard time being too short/too fat/atypical academic interests for my mom’s Vietnamese standards, and combined with my inability to speak I felt isolated from my heritage aside from food. I’m really… hoping this helps me to reclaim some part of me that feels like it’s missing, to seek my heritage behind the lived trauma.

        I don’t think I have any meaningful suggestions, haha! I’ve been trying to better support Asian/POC/marginalized authors, seeking more diverse artists (especially those who bring their heritage into typically white art!), and trying to remain politically aware of current issues and specific diaspora and Asian American news. But I sometimes feel like it’s hard to navigate what’s too skewed or not since I don’t know Asian American news as well (thinking specifically of this instance [https://www.newsweek.com/author-celeste-ng-fires-back-troll-who-attacked-her-son-and-husband-1088263] and the response from r/aznidentity on reddit, but just recently found r/asianamerican instead!) If you find a good resource/site/etc, would you mind sharing? I’ll be keeping an eye on the books you read, as always!

        Hope you have a good weekend!

        • Yes, there is so much to unpack, thank you for doing that with me in this space Cat! In regard to colonialism, I feel like I have so much more to learn about that. One example that comes to mind that I only gained awareness of recently is how accepting and open queerness was in India, up until India was colonized by the British and then made “homosexual acts” a crime. That example is just one of many related to how I think we often view Asian cultures/countries/etc. as “backward” and yet lack context (or at least I lack context and want to gain more of it) for how it’s often time colonizers that have imposed these values onto us.

          I hope that your search for deeper connection with your heritage goes well and I appreciate you sharing the nuances you’ve encountered in your journey with it. I’m sorry about that period of isolation from your heritage and how it sounds like that experience coincided with fatphobia and potentially other forms of oppression. The language thing is something I think about from time to time and should perhaps think more about. I grew up speaking Vietnamese with my grandparents who lived with me, but at this point I can only speak a little and have no clue in terms of reading or writing. One of my close friends who’s Viet is making a dedicated effort to learn whereas I’ve stalled, which I always chalk up to how much time I invest in my grad school pursuits, though I wonder how much of that is an excuse. I’d love to be kept updated on this part of your journey too.

          Yes, I love how you’re doing your best to stay informed about Asian/POC news and to seek art by underrepresented and marginalized creators. Oooooh yike at that Celeste Ng article, I’ve read about that. I wish there was more of a constructive dialogue about Asians dating outside of our race that wasn’t just misogynistic – I think this podcast does a great job of that (there’s also a transcript online somewhere that I read): https://podcast.app/a-very-offensive-rom-com-e56010830/?utm_source=ios&utm_medium=share

          Hope you have a wonderful upcoming weekend!

  3. I don’t react well at these memories. Sometimes I tell myself to just f* them all. They don’t earn a right to dwell in my memory and churn up my emotions. There are days when I want to take up some self defense courses because I’m pretty sure I’ll need it eventually.

    And good for you to regain strength and getting through this. And if Jeni’s had a sorbet in that flavour, I would fly down to where you are and gobble it all up.

    You have wonderful readers here and I enjoy reading their comments. Thanks for being the catalyst here.

    Have a great weekend Thomas. 🙂

    • Thanks for sharing your honest reaction to difficult memories Matt. One day we may eat Jeni’s together! And I appreciate you being one of the wonderful readers you yourself allude to here. (:

  4. polixines

    Beautifully said, Thomas. It might be worth reflecting that although the balance of power is weighed heavily in favour of white people in many countries that does not mean that the majority of white people have more power. A minority of white people hold power. The overwhelming majority are oppressed by low wages, rubbish jobs and get through life with a general sense of worthlessness. The majority of white people are oppressed by their white bosses – and by those ethnic minorities who mistakenly see them as holding power. ‘White privilege’ is not something experienced by the millions of white people living in slum conditions and struggling on a daily basis to hold their lives together. Your ex might be dating a white guy – do you really hate him because he is white? If power lies at the heart of racism and your ex’s bf is actually a working class white man in a poorly-paid job, will he not feel intensely vulnerable were he to discover himself being attacked merely for the colour of his skin?
    I love reading your journey of discovery. Keep going!

    • Peter, I’m responding to this comment because I’ve appreciated your past consistent kindness and thoughtfulness. I’m not going to spend much time beyond this comment to preserve my emotional resources, though I do want to make two points:

      1) Someone can have white privilege and not have class privilege. White people can experience oppression in other ways and still have white privilege, similar to how even though I experience racism and homophobia as a queer Asian, I still have male privilege and cis privilege. I think this article by a white person makes that point fairly well: https://medschool.duke.edu/sites/medschool.duke.edu/files/field/attachments/explaining_white_privilege_to_a_broke_white_person.pdf

      2) Never said I hated my crush’s boyfriend – he might be a cool guy, or not, I don’t know him. I more so hate the overarching system of white supremacy for maintaining white privilege.

      • polixines

        Thank you for responding Thomas: I appreciate it. We are all on a journey and we help and support each other as we learn and change and grow. I do see many white people who have no roof over their heads and who sleep shivering each night and I think they may doubt that there is any white privilege per se – this may be a construct made in academia. A walk around any European city at night will be an education such as cannot be found in books and lecture halls. But Thomas I gain a lot from your thoughtful posts and think deeply about what you say. I know that you will continue to develop and grow – as hopefully will I! You give your readers much to think about and we all benefit. Good wishes and all power to you from a cold February night in London!

  5. Fucking hell, people are incredibly crap, aren’t they. Ugh. But not everyone is, I suppose. Let me share with you that after a load of utter crap in a neighbourhood Facebook group I was in (basically the moderator allowed a homophobic bastard who has been the key person in the horrible Anderton Park School scandal to speak his words but banned anyone speaking against him, including other people of colour, LGTBQ people, etc), a group of women started a new group for people interested in inclusion and community. One of the rules in the group is that all the moderators have to be POC, and while White, straight, cis-gendered people like me are welcomed, we can only be support admin. Also, everyone has to take a short course in intersectionality. We share good news and interesting community stuff and it’s a good place. So good things do happen, but they rest on us having to check our privilege at all times, which is fine. Anyway, that’s just to share a good thing. I am proud of you for standing up against crap and sad you have to do it time and again.

    • I love this story so much Liz, thank you for sharing! That does give me hope, the idea of people creating such a supportive and social justice-oriented community. I appreciate you validating my experiences and offering a slice of your life that is rejuvenating in regard to racial justice. Hope you are well. (:

  6. I feel for you here Thomas as I can relate to what it means to be a POC in America and the complexities of queer dating. Most people see me as Asian, since my mom is Filipina. On top of that, I’m brown as fuck and proud of it. So I always had to deal with the overarching theme of “how Asian am I” even when I actually identify as Pacific Islander.

    I tend to think that I’ve been processing internalized racism well for much of my adult life. But I’ve always wondered how much I have internalized American culture and what does American culture mean for someone who is like me. I was born and raised in Southern California, I only speak English, most of my interests have mostly attracted white friends and lovers thus far. I actually married a white guy largely because we have the same interests. But would I expect any different considering where I lived and what I’m into? It helps knowing the love of my life doesn’t really identify as white rather as Irish. I think white people identifying less as white and more with their ethnicity is central to deconstructing and demolishing white supremacy.

    I’m not sure what I’m trying to say besides I would want to say things that make you feel better and give you a perspective that can help you kick-ass moving forward. All I can say now is that I’m listening and I’m looking forward to your future posts.

    • Thank you for dropping by and leaving such a thoughtful comment! I appreciate you sharing your own experience of being perceived or labeled as Asian even though you identify as Pacific Islander – I wonder how that misperception or mislabeling feels? Also, I’m curious to know more about what your interests are and what it means for you to have internalized American culture. I’m glad you’re reflecting on your identity as well as how whiteness plays into it. The white people identifying as their ethnicity is interesting; while I see how that adds specificity, I also think it’s important for white people to acknowledge their whiteness, especially in the United States, because race (and especially whiteness) is so often unnamed, which leads to white being the norm and the power of whiteness being unaddressed.

      I’m grateful that you stopped by to leave a comment with the hope of empowering me to kick ass. It means a lot to know that this was read by someone and elicited this thoughtful comment. I hope you are well and hope to hear from you again some time in the future.

      • As far as racial impact goes, being considered Asian as opposed to PI is not as bad as other racist actions. But I do personally know how Asian men are stereotyped, especially sexual stereotypes. The most it had done was cost me potential dates. Then again, its costing me dates from racists lol. Its not like a police officer has his knee on my neck.

        I grew up in California and those experiences will always be with me. I love the beach. A lack of culture and ethnic food options in unsettling to me. The sheer randomness of the city is like having a million little things potentially brightening your day. For me, America is all about diversity, not just in race and ethnicity but culture too. Through my America, I feel I can internalize the world and its just not about material culture too like food and music. Its hard to explain.

        I do think white people need to acknowledge their white privilege and what it means to be white but I dont think they have to identify as such to do it. Not to start a maddening argument, but I wouldnt mind exploring this in depth with you.

        Im doing okay. The last week was a rollercoster. During the first 3 days of mass protests, I was angry as hell and crying on and off because the country I love is tearing itself apart, because too many people are harmed or killed by the police unjustifiably and with impunity. I’m looking to do more than donate to charitable causes and speaking out on Facebook. In part, thats why I’m back, to see if I can restart my blog.

        I hope we keep in touch. I think we can bounce great ideas off each other at the very least.

  7. JLS

    Hi Thomas, this is months after you first posted and I just sent a message introducing myself to you. I had mostly grown up in a predominantly white area but I was fortunate enough to become aware of racial issues during my college years. I would say that the combination of racial awareness and my mother remarrying to a white man ended up solidifying my own decision to never marry a white man. So I strongly relate to your sentiments in this post. If anything, I find I have to check my judgments towards fellow POC friends/acquaintances when I find out they are dating someone white. I find myself struggling for multiple reasons: 1. I’m still fighting my own internalization of whiteness/white supremacy and 2. I don’t feel like I can openly discuss my frustrations with white supremacy except for just a few very close friends because of white fragility. Anyway I love seeing a fellow Asian-Am expressing similar frustrations.

    • Hi there, this is about a month later and wanted to say thank you so so much for this comment! I feel like it’s often discouraged to talk about frustrations involving people we know and people we love dating white people because of white fragility and white adjacent fragility, so I really appreciate you sharing your feelings and thoughts about that and your own life experiences. I’m glad you were able to become aware of racial issues during your college years. I’m curious to hear about how you are fighting your own internalization of whiteness and white supremacy and I hope that’s going as well as possible – I am glad you are fighting it instead of just letting it be, even if it feels painful. I am also glad that you have some friends who you can openly discuss your frustrations with (and this blog is always available for you to comment on (: ), as I know in my life having those close friends and social justice in a radical way friends have made such a difference for me. Thanks again for leaving this comment, it means a lot to me and encourages me to keep writing.

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