With comments on my baby's skin colour?(139 Posts)
So I'm White British and my husband is Black African. We've recently had a baby and during pregnancy I received constant comments such as "your baby will be beautiful" "oh mixed race babies are so gorgeous".
Now he's here we get "your baby is very white" "I love his colour" "I wonder if his colour will change" and so on.
AIBU to find this very strange and a bit rude? As if all babies are not beautiful because they're just white or just black? Would you comment on a child's skin colour who wasn't mixed? I can't get my head around the obsession.
Yes it’s inappropriate and weird!!
That is SO rude! Fine to say a baby is lovely etc, but to comment specifically on his colour is just a bit.....odd!
My husband and I are both white but he's olive skinned and I'm so pale I'm practically blue. DD has completely taken after me and people often comment on her colouring. Not sure if it's quite the same situation as it's only variations on the same colour rather than different races.
I imagine it's just cack-handed compliments but YANBU to be annoyed by it.
That's very strange and rude. Like you say OP would people comment on the skin colour of a baby that wasn't mixed race. I don't think so.
Congratulations on your baby!
Who's saying that?! I am of Caribbean descent, and my partner is white British. Our son is very light skinned but no one's really mentioned that, except for me joking that he's going to need SPF 100 like his dad lol.
It's rude and unnecessary!
It does seem rude and a bit weird... but I do get comments from family on my baby’s skin colour and both his parents are white. It’s just I’m fair and his Dad is olive skin, dark hair. People comment because he’s a pale one like me, and I suppose they expected his dad’s darker colouring to be more dominant?
I think some people are so desperate not to come across as racist, and to show how 'ok' they are with all skin colours, that they overcompensate and start saying very ridiculous, slightly racist things in the process.
Yeah, the idea that mixed babies are the most beautiful is rooted in some troubling ideas - mainly that old adage that dark skin = bad and light skin = good. Not to mention the idea that mixed race = "exotic".
My children are mixed and it does confuse people. Especially when they look fairer than expected - as you've found, OP (FWIW my children were pale as babies but their skin colour has darkened a bit as toddlers). Even my husband gets confused comments from people as he walks around with his white looking children
Its probably unintentional, my youngest is ginger and all we get is 'wow his hairs very red, where does he get that from', people seem to comment on his hair instead of the usual 'lovely baby' type comments first 2 DC got 🙄
I just put it down to there not being much to discuss about babies!
People make weird comments about babies, probably because there's not much to talk about, I wouldn't get too upset about it.
People talk the same way about their hair, and the colour change, about their eyes.
I have a mixed baby and you are definitely open to those kind of comments . I personally don’t really mind people saying she’s fair etc but I objected to someone in the family saying she’s “really white”, but I think because it was how it was said. Like it was a problem to them.
YANBU to think this is rude. I'm from a rural community in N. Ireland, basically 99.99% white (that's my v scientific guesstimate) and used to work with people who would do this all. the. time.
I honestly think it was an attempt to be friendly and they didn't realise how offensive and weird it was. Things like "I wonder what colour the baby will be?", "Bet she takes a tan well!", so much touching of curly hair, etc. Come to think of it, it was never said in front of the non-white parent so maybe they knew it wasn't as harmless as they were making out all along? Either way, a bit off imo.
When you got together with your partner did you not see this coming? Questions and comments like this are common. Not everyone is enlightened.
I have commented that someone's' baby will be beautiful. My comment had nothing to do with the colour of their parents' skin.
I find it a bit bizarre to suggest baby will be beautiful. They don't know until baby is here. But I am envious of people with olive/tanned looking skin. I'm super pasty and white, but covered in freckles. Never had a tan, my freckles just merge so I end up with big patches of brown/tan looking skin and white/burnt red.
So I might comment on it if your little one has (IMO) a nice skin colour. Just like I've had people comment on my skin/hair/height. But yes it does get tiring and these sound a lot more like random comments/questions than compliments. I'd just shrug and say 'dunno' while walking away.
When you got together with your partner did you not see this coming? Questions and comments like this are common. Not everyone is enlightened
Ohhh, so people who marry people of a different colour to them should expect racist comments and not be perturbed by them? Riiight. Thanks for that
I don't think its strange or rude. People love to be nice about babies and will comment on anything they can find, to be nice about it. Skin colour, hair colour/length, eyes, nose, freckles. size, smile...literally anything they can think of to say something nice about, they will find.
How can it be strange or rude to comment on your child being beautiful, lovely, adorable? It's not racist in the slightest. My pale as milk blonde DD was an object of intense scrutiny in Asia and Africa, with constant positive comments about how beautiful her skin was, was that racist?
People say all sorts of random stuff once you have a baby. They will comment on anything to do with the baby. The comments you received all sound complimentary so I’d just forget it. Mine were very long as babies. People used to ask me “why is that baby not walking” when they were 7/8 months old.
I know exactly what you mean. My son is 6, and has been subjected to people commenting on his skin since he was born. I ThNk it’s off and I do pull people up on it.
Sadly, you will realise that the stereotyping takes a snore sinister tone as the child gets older. Your cute “exotic” baby might as a toddler get told that he has a “wicked sense of rythm”. Or that with his great built he could make a great bouncer when he grows up? Or my favourite “he is a right little entertainer, bet we will see him on X factor in a few years”. 🙄 all very boring
I think its one of those things that bothers some people and not others, DS is mixed race and I've had similar comments and they don't bother me. Lots of his little friends are too and most of the mums (I'm the only white one if its relevant) make comments too. It's just something vaguely interesting about the DC to make small talk about.
I don’t think it’s quite the same because of the absence of any racist undertones, be it intentional or unintentional, but I get these types of comments a lot with one olive skinned sandy haired DS and a practically pigmentless skinned ginger one. It doesn’t bother me too much because I see that it’s such an obvious visual thing that often people remark without meaning to sound rude. It’s just a conversation thing. However I totally see why it would cut in a deeper / different way if the comments are race related, but I really think people can be just a bit stupid and don’t actually mean anything by their comments. Maybe think of a reply that doesn’t make you sound too rude but that cuts to the point that you can store and use when these comments come up?
Did you really just type that?
Ha, my husband and I are the reverse of you and your husband - I’ve had this with all three of our kids. The best was this stupid woman who worked in our local ASDA - she was insistent that my second child couldn’t be mine, as he was ‘white’ and I wasn’t. She said the same for our third. I couldn’t be bothered to school her in basic biology.
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