It has been quite some time since I have done an interview with an interracial couple on the blog. This week, I went back through my old messages and realized that I had neglected to post an interview. My sincerest apologies to Tami and Corey for the delay in sharing their story. They are such a lovely couple. I had a lovely time communicating with them and reading about their story. They also have amazing photos!I hope you enjoy their article!
What are your names?
C: We are Corey and Tami.
Could you share a bit about yourselves?
T: Corey and I are both 51, and we have been married for 32 years. Back in 1989, we got married at age 19. We have three children together – two boys ages 31 and 26, and a daughter age 23. Also, we have two grandsons aged 7 and 10. We have only been married to each other, with no divorces or children from other relationships.
What are your cultural/ethnic backgrounds?
C: I am is white, and Tami is African-American.
How did you both meet?
We met at North Central Bible College in Minneapolis, MN. I was from a small town in Nebraska, and she was from the suburbs of Detroit.
Did either of you find the dating process challenging?
T: There were no particular challenges in regards to the dating process.
Did you find that your political leanings were a barrier at all?
C: Our political opinions had no real bearing on our relationship.
Do you feel that your location is really welcoming of interracial couples?
T: For the most part, everywhere we have lived, we have been well received and have had, and currently have friends who are in mixed marriages like our own, or where the male was black and the female was white. Our race has never really been an issue in regards to where we have lived or in regards to our jobs.
Do you live abroad (outside of the US)? If so, what drove your decision? Have you faced any issues? Is it a permanent move? If you live in the US, which region or state do you live in?
C: We currently live in Iowa. We have been well received in our current city. Again, we have relationships with other couples who are like us. We haven’t purposely sought out other couples like ourselves, it just organically happened that way.
Do you feel that your location is really welcoming of interracial couples? What is your ideal date?
T: Our ideal date night is dinner, drinks, live music…preferably reggae, jazz or old school R&B. We love art museums, getting tattooed together, and coffee and good conversation.
What is the best thing that you like about each other?
C: We are truly each other’s best friends. Her favorite thing about me is my nurturing nature. I truly love her free spirit, her spiritual gifts and her smile. We don’t have “everything” in common, but we share way more in common than not.
What is the best part about being together?
T: The best part about being together is our friendship. We have literally grown up together since we were 18 years old. We share an unspoken and deep connection, both spiritually and emotionally. That can only happen after so many years of life.
What is your favourite shared memory?
C: One of our favorite shared memories is our 25th wedding anniversary vow renewal wedding. We didn’t have a wedding when we got married, so we did it for our 25th anniversary. It was so beautiful, so much fun and we had all of our family and close friends with us to help us celebrate. Her dress was amazing and the reception is still talked about to this day, five years later! It was a great day!
What challenges have you faced?
C: In regards to our challenges…well, there just isn’t enough time or space to go into all the details of that from the past 30 years. Everything from raising three kids, jobs, moving, broken trust, financial challenges, health challenges – you name it…we have been through it! I am not exaggerating!
T: I will say though, that none of our challenges had anything to do with us being of different races. We understand that when people see us, they see a black woman and a white man…and we see that too, of course.
C: I love her brown skin, natural hair, etc!! People say love has no color, but I disagree. I see her as a brown-skinned woman and I love that about her. That was a big part of the attraction. If love has no color, then God would have made us all the same color.
How do you deal with difficult times?
T: We have endured more than most couples our age. There were many extremely low times, and there have been many great times. However, through it all, we never stopped loving each other. People need to understand that marriage requires an abundance of unselfish, unconditional love, grace and forgiveness.
How have you adjusted to life together? What kind of boundaries protect your relationship? How has your family reacted?
C: In regards to our families’ reaction to our relationship, it was a bit of a mixed bag. In the beginning, her family was cool with our relationship, my family, not so much.
How are things now with your families? Are they supportive or are there any outstanding issues?
T: There was never any long-term defiance or broken relationship with either of our families over it. In the ensuing years, both of our families have grown very close. We have shared many holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, etc. Her parents, my parents and all of our siblings are all close and very supportive. Again, being married as long as we have, with kids and grandkids over all these years, we are a tight and supportive family unit.
What are some of the things you do to keep your relationship growing?
C: One of the things that we share and do to keep our relationship good, is that we share a common Christian Faith!! That’s the foundation. Also, we are very intentional about spending quality time together. We love to travel, we share a mutual love for music, art, tattoos, ministry, family, Star Trek, Star Wars, Sci-Fi, and Sanford and Son. We watch Sanford and Son every night together! For almost 10 years now, we go to bed watching Sanford and Son. I know…sounds strange, but for us… it is one of those “connections” that we share.
Do you have a blog or YouTube channel?
T: We do not have a blog or anything like that. We have shared our story and testimony many times to other couples through various churches and marriage ministry opportunities. We don’t have a perfect marriage…we still have struggles and challenges like anyone else, but we are in love, we take our vows seriously and we put our trust in God. We are happy to share anything with anyone regarding our relationship and our story. It is our sincere desire to encourage, inspire and instill hope in other couples, whether they are in a mixed-race relationship or not.
Thank you so much, Tami and Corey, for agreeing to do this interview with me! This will not be the last couple I will interview for the blog. I am interviewing a young couple now, and I have a few other people to circle back with. (I will also comb through my messages, to ensure that I have covered everyone.) If you are interested in being a part of an interview, please e-mail me at [email protected], or connect with us on the Beyond Black and White Social Media profiles. We are on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. For more posts like this one, please subscribe to our website.