I hope this is the right avenue to contact you for advice, so here goes. I had always dated black men prior to my mother meeting and marrying a white man three years ago. Since then, I have made multiple attempts to date white men, but as with black men, I have always found that there is something lacking. Recently, I started dating a Mexican man. He is kind, chivalrous, and he has a stable career with plans for the future. I feel an incredibly strong connection to him, but I’m wondering if it is because he is Latino and he represents a part of my heritage that I am extremely disconnected from (I am 1/4 Puerto Rican but do not speak Spanish or have contact with my PR relatives or a larger PR community because my family moved from NYC to the South when I was very young).
Because he is the first Latino man I have dated, I’m incredibly worried about fetishizing him, and I fear I already have. His actions have convinced me that regardless of nationality or race, I would be happiest dating only Hispanic/Latino men in the future. Is this wise? Is this racist? Lately I find myself barely attracted to black men and my interest in white men is also waning, but is it a bad idea to narrow the scope of my search for a lifetime partner/husband to Latin men?
Confused Black Latina
Dear Confused Black Latina,
Sometimes I think we waaaaaay overthink this whole interracial dating thing. Throwing words around like “fetishizing” every time someone expresses a preference makes me want to take a bat to the nearest gender studies class.
Slipping on my Freudian hat, my guess is that the Latina part of yourself (that you are fascinated by but don’t know very well) is being projected onto your Mexican partner. Your guy is a reflection of that attraction. You seem to be attaching his kindness, chivalry, and economic status to his nation of origin. I find that curious.
Bottom line: it’s not racist if you wish to exclude men of other ethnicities–you body and mind are not a democracy. But understand that the only person potentially hurt by these self-inflicted limitations is you. How about this? Date the man, not the race or culture he’s from.
Hey group…what say you?