AIBU to look at dp in a completely different light after he said this?

(127 Posts)
stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 16:50:05

First of all just to say that dp comes from a small town where the population are predominantly white, I'm from a diverse and multicultural city.

Dp is one of the most laid back, placid people you could meet, never really has a bad word to say about anyone and has never been racist in front of me.

Recently came back from a beach holiday abroad with dp.

While we were there we briefly met this guy who was there with his young daughter, he happened to be black.

One day dp and I were lounging around by the pool, this guy was sitting over at the other side reading a book while his daughter played.

Dp went to say something to me and then stopped, he said he wasn't going to say it as I'd think he was stupid. Of course I was like 'no go on you have to say it now'.

He turned round and said 'well, see that black man over there sitting in the shade reading his book, well if you were black, woud you really come to a place like this?'

I almost burst out laughing and asked what on earth that was supposed to mean. And he went on to say 'well he already has a tan, if he just wants to relax would he really come to a place like this'.

I was astonished, I of course pointed out that the guy was doing exactly what everyone else was doing, come on holiday and that (a) I wasn't there to get a tan either and (b) black people can still sunbathe and get a tan if they want to and (c) the guy can come on holiday exactly where he pleases for whatever reason he chooses whether it be he wants to relax by the pool, swim in the sea, taste the local cuisine and that it was a completely bizarre thought to even have.

Dp agreed he was being daft and no more was said about it.

But I keep thinking about what he said.

I have told a few people two being my dad and bil who can both be a little bigotted at times and even they couldn't get there breath when I told them and just think he's thick as two short planks.

But it reminded me of another comment dp made about a year ago which I thought was strange.

One of our neighbours is black, I'll call him Bob, it doesn't really even enter my head which neighbours are black, white I just don't see it iyswim. But one day dp was looking out of the window and said 'look Bobs going jogging'. I got up to look purely because dp had mentioned it and Bob isn't really the jogging type, and dp burst out laughing and said 'ha ha it's not really Bob it's just another coloured man'. He thought it was hilarious. Firstly I said I just don't get the joke, so you see a black guy and pretend it's Bob?? And also people haven't really used the term 'coloured' since the 80s and it's not something people really like to be referred to as.

Dp said he didn't realise and just thought he was messing around. His jokes are terrible at the best of times.

But seriously? Am I in a relationship with a racist or just a daft idiot who has lived a bit of an enclosed existence?

WorraLiberty Tue 30-Jul-13 16:53:42

He's not bigoted or racist imo

Just bloody dim! grin

I'm white and I have a sun allergy. When I go abroad I sit in the shade...and still have a thoroughly good time.

As for the Bob thing, that's just a little weird but he does sound as though he has a weird sense of humour?

I wouldn't want to be married to a thicko

Does he have a kind nature? Or a ten inch tongue?

MrsRajeshKoothrappali Tue 30-Jul-13 16:56:59

You're in a relationship with daft idiot.


Was just a dim comment. Don't give it any more thought!!

OwlinaTree Tue 30-Jul-13 16:57:59

I think just a bit daft. He lacks this particular life experience that you have had.

He said in the first eg he was being daft. 2nd eg is a bit strange. Do you think he did think it was Bob and was to embarrassed to admit it?

I think my 5 yr old is brighter than your DH.

Sorry. It's kind of incredible.

Feminine Tue 30-Jul-13 17:00:44

His comments indicate he has led a really sheltered life...

Nothing serious.

Feminine Tue 30-Jul-13 17:02:09

I don't think he sounds "dim" though confused

It is what happens to folk when they are not exposed to much!

WorraLiberty Tue 30-Jul-13 17:02:42

Am I in a relationship with a racist or just a daft idiot who has lived a bit of an enclosed existence?

On a serious note...

You should absolutely know the answer to your question, unless you've only recently met this guy?

WorraLiberty Tue 30-Jul-13 17:04:04

'Thicko' is unkind but I do think it's a teensy bit dim to assume the only reason anyone goes abroad is to top up their sun tan grin

I think he is just a bit....unaware, shall we say?

It doesn't sound as if he was being nasty, just a little bit daft.

parakeet Tue 30-Jul-13 17:04:41

I really don't think your husband is racist. I'm sure you would know yourself if he truly was.

I grew up in a small town in the 70s and therefore met very few people who were not white until I was 18. It does make less multicultural in attitude and outlook in all sorts of ways.

Just one reason why I love living in London today.

Are you married to Steptoe?

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 17:06:39

He's not some rowdy loud mouth who would ever say these things to anyone else. I wouldn't say that he was unkind.

He just has the strangest thought processes. One of the things he says a lot is everything on the floor. So if something is on the table it's on the floor.

I discovered he did this when ds was a baby and dp went to check on him asleep in his cot. Dp came back in and said oh he's fine he's just on the floor. I was like wtf he's on the floor? But he meant the floor of the cot i.e. the mattress. But to him everything is the floor.

I'd love to get inside his thoughts sometimes and understand them.

sparkle12mar08 Tue 30-Jul-13 17:08:36

Okay either he has a speech processing disorder or yes, he's just a bit dim...

WorraLiberty Tue 30-Jul-13 17:10:01

Then why are you asking us if he's racist, if you know he has a weird thought process?

Parmarella Tue 30-Jul-13 17:11:33

Dim, not racist

Feminine Tue 30-Jul-13 17:12:26

The weird thought process would explain his comments then op


He sees things a bit differently.

chocoluvva Tue 30-Jul-13 17:12:35

DS (14) asked me the other day if people with black skin get sunburnt!

Beastofburden Tue 30-Jul-13 17:15:08

I think to be racist you have to automatically think less of someone because of their race. Does he? Would he react badly if DS had a black partner?

Is he generally tactless? Does he make sexist or anti-gay jokes/ comments?

invicta Tue 30-Jul-13 17:15:20

Alot of people use the term 'coloured' without realising its non-pc, or out of habit. They are not being racist, just ignorant. I think if there was no maliciousness behind it, then don't worry.

WorraLiberty Tue 30-Jul-13 17:15:20

Which is a very intelligent question chocoluvva

shinytoe Tue 30-Jul-13 17:16:24

Nah, your husband was just being a bit ignorant.

It's like when people get surprised that dark-skinned people tan, or are happy when they tan. The only reference that is usually in the media about Indians and tanning, for example, usually then uses Aishwayra Rai as an ideal and goes on and on about skin-lightening products, suggesting that all naturally dark-skinned people should avoid the sun because in some Asian cultures, lighter skin is seen as desirable. This fashion doesn't necessarily transfer to all darker-skinner people and lots will still want to sunbathe for a variety of reasons!

MrsRajeshKoothrappali Tue 30-Jul-13 17:17:45

The calling a table/cot the floor would worry me more.


Cherriesarelovely Tue 30-Jul-13 17:18:21

Not that bad, honestly! Loads of people express surprise that my Dp sits out in the sun and gets even browner than she already is. I was once having my nails done in a beauty place and some guys came in to use the sun beds. They were all mates and one of them was black, his friends were all ribbing him in a lighthearted way about wanting a sunbed when he already had a great colour, he was laughing about it too but said he wanted to go darker!

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 17:19:03

Thanks for replies.

I kind of do know deep down he's not racist and certainly not intentionally, and yes I suppose I should know the answer. He's certainly never experessed any racist views just perhaps a lack of understanding but that is due to where he's lived and his upbringing.

In fact a thought is coming back to me of when we were going to my friends birthday party, she is British Indian and there was loads of South Asian food and I remember him being excited like a little kid and telling his friends how we were going to this party and about all of the food people who were going to be there.

I think even though we've been together years I feel as though there's bits of him I still don't know.

He's not much of a talker, but he's like that with everyone, he's generous and helpful but sometimes it's just as though there's not much going on in there as horrible as that probably sounds.

Bu after years I know that's the way he is.

OrmirianResurgam Tue 30-Jul-13 17:21:19

Daft idiot.

maja00 Tue 30-Jul-13 17:26:23

Not racist, but maybe not the sharpest tool in the box, and unfamiliar/uncomfortable with people who aren't white?

I think I would look at a partner in a different light after those comments too though! Sounds like the kind of jokes/comments a 12 year old would make.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 17:27:37

Sorry I think I'm replying a bit slower than questions, sorry if I haven't answered got to go and make dinner now though too.

Just to answer no he's certainly never made anti gay jokes.

I don't 'think' he'd be bothered at all if ds had a non white partner, but the discussion has never come up.

A few months ago in a shopping centre there was a couple with two little baby twins and ds asked if when he was older he would have a brown baby. Dp went all red and got really embarrassed and started checking to see if they'd heard. I simply said to ds that when two people have a baby the baby usually looks a bit like their mummy and a bit like their daddy.

Xihha Tue 30-Jul-13 17:29:54

I grew up in a small predominantly white town and I have to say the comments your DP made do sound like things my Dad would say, just be glad he said it quietly. I can remember a black family moving in to a house near my parents a few years back and my Dad trying to describe them to my mum as 'dark chocolate flavour rather than milkybar or dairy milk' because he thought that would be nicer then calling them black hmm

I don't think it comes from any horrible racist intent, just being a bit dim.

maja00 Tue 30-Jul-13 17:30:23

To be fair I think lots of people would be embarassed if their child asked if they could have a brown baby grin

NotYoMomma Tue 30-Jul-13 17:33:46

I did wonder if black people got sunburned when I was young blush

I also thought black people must never need to wear foundation or get spots as you never got darker shades round here in the shops (in a v white area).

I thought my Nigerian friends tribe would have consisted of 7 people and a cow... but apparently it has the same population as the UK shock (igbo) - he still laughs at me over this.

I think its more sheer ignorance lol. and I do totes holiday to get a tan blush

I do ask a lot of questions though

Chocco, that's not such a silly question. The darker the skin, the harder it is to burn but it does happen. That's the purpose of the pigment, to protect the skin from the sun.

Faithless12 Tue 30-Jul-13 17:54:01

From those comments I wouldn't say he's racist but I wouldn't say simply sheltered either, ignorant maybe. Yes, black people can burn and some even want to tan as plenty of my friends who are currently on the beach envy somewhere tanning can attest to.

Faithless12 Tue 30-Jul-13 17:55:42

LyraSilvertongue, thats not always true my mixed race friend burnt more easily than her white grandparents.

I think your friend is probably an exception. Generally, the darker the skin the less likely to burn and fairer skins burn more easily.

DiseasesOfTheSheep Tue 30-Jul-13 17:57:25

Huh, I didn't really think of black people getting tanned... It never really occurred to me, as it were. In fact, both of those sound like dimwitted things I would say (particularly the latter as I am incapable of recognising anyone, even good friends, I just have a rubbish memory for face! I recognise people by how they walk / clothes / etc).

I'm not a racist bigot, so I'd give your dp the benefit of the doubt...

CatDogAndMouse Tue 30-Jul-13 18:06:19

I think your DP was a bit daft. However, I think yabu to have told people about it and laughed at him behind his back. I would hate it if my family ridiculed my DP. I have far too much respect for him for that. Surely we can all say things that are daft sometimes.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 18:57:19

Well ds is 4 so asking if he'll have a brown baby is a reasonable question. Perhaps I'm thick skinned

As for telling my family, well I don't feel bad about that but that's a whole other thread.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:02:39

Mrsrajesh, regarding finding so calling everything the floor worrying, can you elaborate?

Trinpy Tue 30-Jul-13 19:11:52

The thing about the brown baby reminds me of Wayne and Waynetta Slob.

Capitola Tue 30-Jul-13 19:14:52

Agree - he's just a bit dim.

Spartacus101 Tue 30-Jul-13 19:15:50

Why would you say floor when you mean table? confused

valiumredhead Tue 30-Jul-13 19:23:44

I don't think he's racist, just very thick! Sorry!

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:24:54

Trinpy, what a horrible thing to say, ds is only 4, he genuinely does not know any better which is why it was an opportunity to explain.

How dare you compare a 4 year old child's innocence to Wayne and waynetta slob.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:28:24

I've no idea but do says a lot of strange things like that and I was hoping someone could shed some light.

Spartacus101 Tue 30-Jul-13 19:31:04

i think they just meant the wording 'i wanner braaaawwwwn baby' not anything offensive towards your dc

OfficerMeow Tue 30-Jul-13 19:32:54

Is his name Tim, you know nice but dim?

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Jul-13 19:33:35

I'm actually feeling a bit bad for your DH here.

I'm sure he'd be delighted to know that people think he's "thick" and "dim".

I come down like a ton of bricks if I hear pupils referring to others as thick/dim etc.

He sounds like he is uneducated rather than "dim" OP

Have you heard of Gardner's Theory of Multiple Intelligences?

Your DH probably scores high on something other than academic performance - e.g artistic, emotional etc.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:33:47

I hope so! Because it would be bizarre if people thought a 4 year old describing a brown baby (which was explained) worse than a 35 year old man asking why a black person goes on holiday. Perhaps I'm in a parallel universe where the table I'd the floor!

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:36:57

Salmotratta of course you are right but I think my question I suppose should be more, is ignorance an excuse?

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Jul-13 19:37:09

Oh, and plenty of adults who should have more sense refer to the ground as "the floor".

Which is ridiculous.

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Jul-13 19:39:47

Well, maybe not an excuse but if his education is lacking its a reason why he doesn't know theses things.

And a lot of education comes from the home - as do attitudes.

If he is a decent, hard working bloke who gets on with people then that's all that matters.

Salmotrutta Tue 30-Jul-13 19:41:23

these things.

Sorry if I sound grumpy but I loathe people being labelled as thick/ stupid and so on.

I hoped we'd progressed beyond that...

LEMisdisappointed Tue 30-Jul-13 19:44:01

ahahahaha smile My mum has a medical condition that means that he skin is brown, like a "black" person - not so much now but when she was younger she would practically worship the sun, i would often say "but mummy, you are brown enough already" smile A black person probably has more protection from the sun than a white person so maybe you should turn your DH's comment around! Also, is the only reason people go to hot places on holiday to get a sun tan?? It was a particulary daft faux pas, but not racist imo

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:47:58

I don't think you sound grumpy and you put a very good point across.

I don't feel terribly bad for do but as I say that's a whole other story.

And of course dp is bloody fantastic at some things.

I'm just not sure at times that he even attempts to think outside the box but I'm in danger of analysing my entire relationship and his entire self.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 19:54:32

LEM we had this whole thing on holiday, dp is from the life where you holiday twice a year lie in the sun all day and wear your tan like a badge of honour, I however think cooking your skin twice a year is a bad idea and would prefer to be in the shade reading my book.

LEMisdisappointed Tue 30-Jul-13 20:11:58

smile When we went to greece on holiday i used factor 50, when we got back my mum was mortified and told me i looked like i hadn't even been away hmmgrin

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 20:22:29

Hmm, do asked why I'd only bought 'kids' suncream. I said most factor 50 says kids on the bottle.

cjel Tue 30-Jul-13 20:43:29

OP I don't think the wayne and waynetta thing was meant offensively. I think it was because Waynetta was always telling wayne off for not having given her a brown baby like all the other girls on the estate.

Agreed cjel. Poor Trinpy was just remembering a funny sketch.

There is a lot of ignorance around the suntan/burn issue. I once had a ridiculous conversation (with a science teacher FGS) who was not a racist, but was puzzled that a black colleague had sunburnt her arms on sports day. Just daft and saying things before thinking. And a black friend of mine (get how right-on I am grin) said that a doctor told her that her kids never needed suncream, at least not in England. Which she ignored.

stripeyspots Tue 30-Jul-13 21:02:57

Ah, sorry if I misunderstood, I am very tired and grumpy today.

cjel Tue 30-Jul-13 21:03:13

I think I'm a bt like OPs DH in that i say things and don't know that it was an un pc thing to say. I have no racist/sexist views and so things don't occur to me as wrong. I think that there may be some processing strangeness though as with the floor thing.
Think hes harmless!!

My mum asked me if OH had gotten darker since she last saw him, and was genuinely surprised when I said yes, he'd caught the sun. She thought black people just stayed the same colour all year round.

My mum had never met a black man before I brought OH home, and told him as much... It was an awkward first meeting. "Err, I'm honoured?" grin

funkky Wed 31-Jul-13 05:05:34

Lol@ comments. Shows some of the ignorance black people put up with everyday!

coffeewineandchocolate Wed 31-Jul-13 06:06:18

Op. why don't you just discuss the comment with him?(and ask him why he calls flat surfaces the floor).

GruffBillyGoat Wed 31-Jul-13 06:30:50

Sounds innocent but dim, just remind him it is not appropriate. Reminds me of when we were younger and my little brother asked "you know how dark colours absorb heat, does that mean that black people get hotter during summer than white people?"

Though the joke about bob would leave me a bit hmm and I might have a few words.

chocoluvva Wed 31-Jul-13 10:20:04

I don't think I'd ever seen a black person in 'the flesh' till I went to uni.

There was one Chinese family in the place I lived (Scottish island). No Hispanic, Indian or Arabic (looking) people either.

I'm in my forties by the way.

As far as I know there is only one black - as in very dark-skinned - child at DD's secondary school, which is in a 'leafy suburb'.

Perhaps like me, your DP has a short mouth-brain connection and says things as soon as they enter his head before he's thought about them and realised there's more to it than that.

DD and I - we're in Scotland, have commented on how nice it is to see almost everybody looking tanned, after the heatwave. People look healthier. (even if they're not). We're both proud of our slight tans! Apart from anything else it slightly conceals our blotchy translucense!) But we wouldn't bother to use fake tan or sunbathe. It's a bonus.

We don't have holidays abroad, but I imagine that it's nice to have someone comment on your tan and ask if you've been away - nice to tell people you had a lovely holiday I suppose.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 10:21:36

I have asked him why he says that and other things but he either insists he's right or makes out I'm attacking him and gets upset.

I must admit I'm a bit shocked at some of the thoughts people have, it's as though some people think black people are from another planet.

But with dp, it's not so much asking a genuine question that bothers me, such as can black people get a tan. It's the 'why would he come to a place like this' it hadn't even occured to me, I don't look at somebody and see colour.

Reminds me of the time I was out with a black mate from work and somebody asked him where he was from, and he said Sandwell Birmingham and the guy was like no where are you really from.

It's crap behaviour imo and nit because I'm PC

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 10:33:10

Choco yes it's lovely until you end up with skin cancer or crocodile skin from sun damage or fair skinned children with sunburn (not you btw) but many of the people I see each year on holiday.

I don't think so had quite never seen a black person until his 20s although he did grow up in a different place to me.

I'm glad people don't think it's too bad what he said but I do wonder if I'd started a thread 'aibu to wonder why a black nan went to a place like this when he already has a tan' the responses would have been totally different.

Aibu to wonder why an Asian family went for a curry when they already eat it every day?

chocoluvva Wed 31-Jul-13 10:38:42

Your DPs joke about the jogger - perhaps he thought for a split second that he was your neighbour (he was in your street after all), thought to himself, 'I'd be surprised to see Bob jogging' and decided to play a little trick on you by getting you to jump up to catch sight of your neighbour jogging only to be 'disappointed' that it wasn't him after all. IYSWIM

chocoluvva Wed 31-Jul-13 10:42:30


Totally agree with the skin-cancer risk foolishness. And crocodile skin - I try to console DD by telling her she'll be glad she didn't 'sunbathe' a lot when she's older and still has lovely smooth skin.

I see what you mean about it being a 'thing' for him about noticing people's skin colour whereas you would barely register it.

Chocovore Wed 31-Jul-13 10:45:45

It was a flippant thought which he dismissed but you pushed him to voice out loud. You say you know he is not a racist so I don't understand why you are analysing it so much. We all have ridiculous thoughts pop into our mind sometimes don't we?

I asked my black friend if/how much her skin burned. If you don't ask, you don't know.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 10:47:19

Yes, it was funny in the sense I wanted to catch a look at the neighbour jogging, which is pretty sad in itself! Had he said its just another 'tall man' or just another 'short guy' wouldn't have seemed the same.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 10:52:27

Choco, I think perhaps it's some of the thoughts that dp has that bother me rather than it possibly being a race issue.

For example if we go to a restaurant he doesn't like me leaving food on the plate as he thinks it's rude so he will eat my leftovers even if he's stuffed.

He once thought he got flu because he hadn't had his haircut and felt unclean.

Drives me insane.

chocoluvva Wed 31-Jul-13 11:00:19


Perhaps he was brought up to leave some food on the plate to show that the portion size was sufficiently generous. But why bother about the restaurant staff's feelings?

Old habits die hard!

chocoluvva Wed 31-Jul-13 11:02:18

If you're more educated/worldly than him he maybe feels inferior/insecure and gets defensive when you appear to be pointing this out by challenging his remarks.

aldiwhore Wed 31-Jul-13 11:47:13

My black friend flagged up my general ignorance (not racism) when he showed me his tan lines. Before that it had never occurred to me that already dark skin could get darker.

Stupid I know, we laughed about it, I was cringingly embarrassed, he thought it was hilarious.

Yes op your DP was a bit daft, we're all daft sometimes I think, and at least he is socially savvy enough to have asked YOU rather than his new friend!!

We all have our weird, often unreasonable quirks... the question is not what's wrong with your DP but whether you can put up with them? An ideal relationship is one where both parties can live with the other's flaws.

glastocat Wed 31-Jul-13 11:50:11

I'm from NI and had never met a black person until I was over 20. I worked in Bognor Butlins for a season when I was 22 and waitressed for a black family that told me they wanted to buy me a drink one night. When I met them I told them they were the first coloured family I'd ever met what a fuckwit. The daughter who was the same age as me went crazy and started shouting at me about how offensive the word is, I felt terrible! But when I apologised and said I honestly thought that was the polite way to say black ( cringe!) they absolutely couldn't have been nicer, they had no idea parts of the UK were so white ( so far as I know my home town still is). Anyway they ended up inviting me to visit them in Elephant and Castle, and when I moved to London a few months later I did and they told EVERYONE what I'd said and took the piss out of me relentlessly for as long as I knew them! grin. So maybe your husband is a bit sheltered or a twat like I was. grin

musicismylife Wed 31-Jul-13 11:55:02

It's almost as if 'seeing a black person' is a rite of passage to life.

Well, folks, I never saw a white person until I was four months old wink

FriendlyLadybird Wed 31-Jul-13 12:07:32

Started to read the whole thread but it seemed to wander off-topic -- so apologies if this has been said before. OP, I don't think he was being racist. He was being a bit daft but he probably realised that because he started to say it and then stopped. I've nearly said the stupidest things in my time. The only reason my DH doesn't think I'm completely thick is that I've managed to stop myself before I've voiced the thoughts.

Mandy2003 Wed 31-Jul-13 12:14:09

OP's DP probably thinks black people don't blush either!

Stripeyspots, the "no, where are you REALLY from " thing is the most irritating thing in the world. I get that from old people who refuse to accept that I was born and brought up in this country. They're only satisfied when I tell them where my parents were born.

Glastocat, I think it was really OTT of the daughter to shout at you over an honest mistake.

PeriodFeatures Wed 31-Jul-13 13:21:26

Your DH is from Roysten Vasey. Don't worry.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 13:23:10

One of the craziest things I've ever heard.

We did a diversity course at work and the trainers who planned the course did a bit on misconceptions, one of things they did was a survey in a small town, a town not far from where dp grew up. They did a multiple choice quiz on what did people think the Muslim population in Britain was compared to non Muslims. Out of 100 people asked almost all thought that 50% of the population of Britain were Muslim (taking over anyone?). How can you live here and really believe that 50% of the population are Muslim!

ViviPru Wed 31-Jul-13 13:28:32

OP Your DPs ways are fascinating.... can you think of any more you could share?

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 13:32:46

He calls a blanket a rug, I find that one a little weird

ViviPru Wed 31-Jul-13 13:34:55

Seriously, stripey, I'm not sure why but I'm weirdly captivated by this. The blanket/rug thing was precisely sort of thing I was hoping you'd say...... Any more?

Are his parents like this?

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 13:43:09

They are not really although not entirely like people I know. I find them all a little serious, and dos mum still treats him like a baby.

Dp also claims to not remember anything from his childhood.

I don't know in all seriousness I have wondered if there is some kind of underlying social thing going on with him but what do I know?

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 13:46:24

One if the things that bothers me is he isn't at all interested in comedy, shows or comedians, he rarely laughs at anything and when he dies its usually at something rather strange or childish, like Bob going for a jog when it's not even Bob.

mumblechum1 Wed 31-Jul-13 13:57:00

DH, who is black, once went on the train from Edinburgh (where he was born and brought up) to London.

Sitting next to him was a 20 year old Scot who had lived on Skye his whole life. He asked DH to tell him when they were in London as he was worried about missing his stop.

Anyway, they chatted, and DH gave him some pointers about London etc.

As they got off the train, the lad said to DH "thanks for helping. I was worried about talking to you because the people in the village said that whatever I do in London, I must not talk to any black people. You're the first black person I've ever met

This was in about 1995


ViviPru Wed 31-Jul-13 14:17:45

How interesting about the sense of humour thing. I guess the bottom line is how much does this stuff bother you. DH and I have a bit of a sense of humour venn diagram, but I wonder how I'd feel if there were no crossover in the middle since laughing together is so important imo.

FWIW, my DH has ADHD. Not suggesting for one second that could be an explanation for your DP's peculiarities but that's probably why this is striking such a chord with me. Just the fact that he thinks so very differently and comes out with some very unexpected things on occasion... I know what it's like to live with someone that seems to be wired differently.

BridgetBidet Wed 31-Jul-13 14:26:58

He was sort of right in a way. Culturally in general black people regard a darkened skin due to the sun as not socially or culturally a good thing and paler skins are far more valued and considered more beautiful in general. For example the valuing of 'brownings' in Jamaica.

And I have to say in my experience for that reason black people do tend not to go on holiday for 'sunbathing' type holidays. Oh, and also the type of country these holidays are normally in are often not pleasant for black people to visit, particularly in terms of the service they will receive.

mumblechum1 Wed 31-Jul-13 14:29:07

Culturally in general black people regard a darkened skin due to the sun as not socially or culturally a good thing

What a weird thing to say. DH, as I say, is black and although he certainly has no interest in getting a tan (he's very dark), he enjoys holidays in the Maldives, California, Tuscany etc as much as the next (white) person (ie me grin)

But culturally, he's Scottish.

maja00 Wed 31-Jul-13 14:30:43

Culturally in general? What, all black people? Just one culture?

Keztrel Wed 31-Jul-13 14:44:36

OP, your DP does not sound racist. I love the 'everything's the floor' thing. He sounds kind of sweet and unusual to me. You seem very keen to insist that you don't 'see' colour, which is fine, but not everyone is like you - just because your DP notices colour and makes occasional odd comments about it doesn't mean he's got some underlying hatred for black people. Personally I do notice colour - my DH is mixed race and I kind of notice his skin colour all the time (same as his eyes, beard etc.) because I think it's hot!

PeriodFeatures Wed 31-Jul-13 14:45:05

Culturally in general black people regard a darkened skin due to the sun as not socially or culturally a good thing and paler skins are far more valued and considered more beautiful in general. For example the valuing of 'brownings' in Jamaica.

What like how:

'Culturally in general white people regard a whitened skin as not socially or culturally a good thing and orange skins are considered far more beautiful in general. For example the valuing of 'tanning' in TOWIE' ? [grin}

PeriodFeatures Wed 31-Jul-13 14:45:34

*grin even

thefattwins Wed 31-Jul-13 14:51:16

It's a weird one. Is everything else in the relationship fine? Are there any other question marks?

I've had to educate my DP over the years with things he genuinely didn't know. It's incredible to think people don't realise that "coloured" is an offensive term (his excuse was that he lived in South Africa and that "Cape Coloured" was a genuine term hmm) but it was a small thing in the grand scheme of how great he was as a person.

thefattwins Wed 31-Jul-13 14:54:37

Ha, sorry - just read some of the other weird things [laugh] he certainly sounds (ahem) alternative, but harmless. Do you love him?

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 15:44:28

I do love him I just don't really understand him.

Scruffey Wed 31-Jul-13 15:55:48

I think your dh just sounds thick. Doesn't really sound racist to me, just a defective thought process going on!

WafflyVersatile Wed 31-Jul-13 16:03:46

Just sounds like it is something that he hasn't had much experience of, has never given much thought to, has never needed to, just isn't that important to him until a thought pops into his head.

There is a thread here just now about 'only just realised'. We all have these things. Perhaps your DP is just a bit like Joey from friends. Knows a lot about one thing and other stuff barely registers.

TheCraicDealer Wed 31-Jul-13 16:13:41

Like Glastocat, I'm from NI. In my year group at school there was one girl of Chinese descent, and a fella whose dad was Brazilian. That was about as diverse as it got! 99.15% of our population is white.

Conversely DP grew up in the midlands in a town which has a high proportion of asian residents. I would admit that I notice people of different races more quickly than him, simply because I'm not used to seeing people of a different skin colour in "real life". It wouldn't make me treat them any differently though, and I would try to keep my musings on their choice of holiday destination to myself. It's just another part of the fabric of someone's identity.

Your DP sounds a bit tactless and sheltered; it doesn't seem like there's any genuine malice behind it.

Pendeen Wed 31-Jul-13 16:26:07

What sort of education has your DP achieved OP?

Some people have said he must be dim, thick or poorly educated.

I don't think he is, it sound to me like something quite different is going on but what do you say?

Like others here ,I am from a very 'un-diverse' part of the UK and have never met a black person. I believe this is not as uncommon a situation as many assume.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 17:12:36

Off the topic of the initial subject, I also don't think thick and dim are particularly helpful. But I'm I can be a bit 'thick' myself. And do worn be seeing the thread as I've n/c.

Do is educated to A level but vocationally. He is skilled in his trade and is brilliant at anything practical he can just about fix anything, navigate his way around anywhere.

I guess to me there's just something about my do which I can't quite put ny finger on.

He hates any social event, has no interest in getting to know anyone, he can actually be a bit unintentionally rude to people. He's not emotional at all, in all the years we've been together I've never seen him cry or get emotional about anything. Sometimes I get frustrated because he feels a bit of an empty vessel, no interest in politics, no strong opinions on anything. Worries about everything,

Betternc4this Wed 31-Jul-13 17:20:20

I tend to think not out and out racist but not very pc it has to be said.

The first suntan comment I would lean towards ignorance and thinking everyones main reason for a holiday in the sun is the white mans/womans obsession with getting a tan.

The second comment would worry me slightly more tbh as it has a bit of 'they all look the same' kind of suggestion to it.

chocoluvva Wed 31-Jul-13 17:48:02


DiseasesOfTheSheep Wed 31-Jul-13 17:53:05

He calls a blanket a rug, I find that one a little weird

That's an Enid Blyton-ism... Or rather, it presumably was an acceptable term for a blanket in a certain segment of society back then, since the kids in her stories were always taking "rugs" camping.

I used to want to take actual floor rugs camping as a child since I misunderstood this. Then when it was pointed out it meant blankets, I used to refer to them as rugs too - annoyed the fuck out of my mother, I can tell you grin

I can also understand the logic of calling the base of a cot the "floor". In my head, it's definitely the floor of the cot, and I could well shorten that to refer to it just as the floor...

I also notice colour, outward signs of religion etc, like your dp. It may be because I grew up in a less multicultural area, or it may be because I'm crap at recognising people, so I have to take in something wink I don't think it's a sign of anything too concerning!

DiseasesOfTheSheep Wed 31-Jul-13 17:54:22

That said, I do have strong opinions on nearly everything, so I'm not quite as odd as your dp grin

PeriodFeatures Wed 31-Jul-13 17:54:26

He hates any social event, has no interest in getting to know anyone, he can actually be a bit unintentionally rude to people. He's not emotional at all, in all the years we've been together I've never seen him cry or get emotional about anything. Sometimes I get frustrated because he feels a bit of an empty vessel, no interest in politics, no strong opinions on anything. Worries about everything

He sounds like an anxious person. Lovely but a bit anxious. Anxiety can have the effect of 'freezing' people emotionally and intellectually. Anxiety take so much energy it can be impossible to think properly. Some people have it for years and years.

Re the race thing, I don't think it's anything to worry about. I was brought up in an area of the UK where there are no people of any other background other than white anywhere. I went for coffee with a friend one day who literally burst out laughing when a bloke walked past. He said Oh my god..Look how 'Black' he is!! I kind of mulled this comment over and over and and I think he just basically was surprised and a coming from a bit of a backwater didn't know how to respond.

I notice colour. But then I'm a people observer and notice a lot of things.

happygirl87 Wed 31-Jul-13 18:02:50

I know this is not the point, but stripy please please please explain- he thought he had flu because he hadn't had his hair cut?!

happygirl87 Wed 31-Jul-13 18:03:05

sorry, stripey

Lizzabadger Wed 31-Jul-13 18:08:18

I also think he sounds a bit Asperger-y but not malicious or racist or anything.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 18:13:28

Sorry its turned into an analyse do thread!

Asoergers or on the autistic spectrum has crossed my mind but I'm in no position to think that really.

He is definitely anxious and I suppose I haven't considered how consuming that can be, at the same time dp will work up a sweat about taking something back to the shop, he wakes up at night worrying his vans being broken into, yet he's oblivious to things like locking the car doors especially when we're in a bad area or stuck in traffic, he's the type that would leave the door unlocked. isn't concerned walking in a high crime area at night.

I suppose I was daft to say I don't notice colour/race, of course I'm aware, and I am a people watcher too. But I don't think it would occur to me to wonder why somebody is doing x or y because of it.

Or maybe it would actually, if I'm going for a curry I usually think such and such a place is good and a lot of Asian families go so it must be good, is that as daft as what do said? blush

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 18:15:05

Yes honestly he really did, when I pulled him up on it he admitted it was crazy but he thought it was less hygienic, don't know how I manage with my long hair.

stripeyspots Wed 31-Jul-13 18:16:07

I keep typing do instead of dp as auto correct on phone

PeriodFeatures Wed 31-Jul-13 18:42:13

lizza Aspergers doesn't exist anymore apparently! It got taken out of the DSM earlier this year.

Yeah strpey He sounds anxious. And lovely still...:D

What you said about restaurants isn't daft at all. If the people who know the type of food best go there then it's prob good. Like when you're abroad, people say eat where the locals eat if you want good, authentic food.

funkky Wed 31-Jul-13 19:27:32

I think it's being deliberately ignorant your dp's comments. It's also nice to consider people's feelings as I hope ur p wasn't staring rudely at the man and daughter on holiday. I say this cause I have been on holidays and very uncomfortable being stared at by 'lovely but ignorant people'

Btw, I never saw a white person till I was 25 years old, I am now 32 but don't ask silly questions, I just use my brain to deduce things.......,

BananaramaLlama Wed 31-Jul-13 19:55:39

I wouldn't find calling a blanket a rug that weird.... I'm Scottish, is that the difference on that one?

Gruntfuttock Wed 31-Jul-13 20:19:15

How the hell can a grown man actually think he can get flu because he hasn't had his hair cut? That goes way beyond ignorance into total stupidity.

whitesugar Thu 01-Aug-13 01:47:11

I am so sorry for saying this but this thread has made me laugh so much. I suppose everyone is different and that's what makes the world go around. He sounds like he has a lot of good points and so long as you love him that's all that matters. He probably thinks it's really weird that some people can't fix things.

Where I live lots of people basically speak English with no concern about tenses and make up words like instead of saying I drove they say I driv, they say I was learned instead of I was taught.

I hope I haven't offended you by laughing, it really was in a tender way and not malicious.

stripeyspots Thu 01-Aug-13 07:26:18

I don't think he was staring, not that I noticed.

Do is such a worrier, unless it's just me picking. For example two things I noticed last night.

Dp is going out Saturday night say at 7. I said can he come with me to take ds and my nephew for a pizza at lunchtime for nephews birthday and he started flapping saying he might not have time as he have to get ready? Dp is the quick shower and throw clothes on without even ironing them type. I explained that we'd only be a couple of hours ans be back by two, plenty of time to go out at 7! He's ok about it now but I know Saturday hell be panicking.

Other thing, bil offered to do something for us. It's not a big thing and won't put bil out at all, but bil will need to know when to know if he can.

Dp rang bil last night as we'd decided what date would be good, we needed to know as if bot we can make other arrangements. Dp then had the most awkward conversation with bil and ended up being very vague on dates so it's tended up back to square one really where nobody really knows what they're doing!

AnnaFiveTowns Thu 01-Aug-13 09:21:16

I don't think he sounds thick or racist. Just clumsy. He does sound a bit Aspergers. But if you love him and you're happy, so what?

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