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This is going to sound very naive

(56 Posts)
CinnamonPreztel Fri 24-Aug-12 12:38:27

But when do you consider someone mixed race? My ds's father is black, I am white. However ds' dad is 1/4 african, therefore my ds is 1/8. I am 1/4 Czech but wouldn't consider myself mixed race?

Although ds's dad is only 1/4 African, he is definitely black! My ds looks tanned, but has my caucasian hair, I suppose he appears Spanish.

I apologise for how ignorant this sounds! But would I term my ds as "mixed race"? I have done, because he has a black father and white mother. But because he is just tanned- I would still describe him as white.

cheapandchic Mon 01-Oct-12 16:35:33

just too add. 9 months is still young. both my children were always thought of as white by midwifes/other mums at playgroup...

that is until about 18 months when their hair curled up and skin went lovely caramel cappuccino smile

now everyone knows they are mixed

Marabou Sat 29-Sep-12 22:21:09

What an interesting thread! I would tick white to be honest if I were you.. If he looks it that is. It's just easier that way I think, you can't force ethnicity..

I'm mixed (1/2 white-1/2 black) but you would never know it. Probably like your DS. My DS is 3/4 black and 1/4 white but looks like a "regular" mixed race child. I often lie about my heritage, well not really lie, but when strangers ask me if I'm from Brazil or some Arab country etc. I just say yes to avoid having to explain. Then I swiftly say I don't speak the language lol!

I find it hurtful to be told I don't look like my true mix so I avoid telling people both white and black. I think it's a privilege to look like a particular race, it gives you a sense of belonging. So if you're DS look white, just say he is.

misslala1987 Mon 03-Sep-12 17:55:41

Hi just putting my 2 cents in! lol my 3 children are all mixed race (half white europeon/half black carribean) theyre all quite light with mixed texture hair (alot of people think theyre either half asian or greek or south american, anything but carribean!) though my eldest and youngest are darker, my middle is very light, practically golden white with golden curly hair. so i guess he could pass for white right? but would i ever let that happen? no! i have 3 mixed children and that is eactly what they are and are raised to know who they are. its not just because daddys around full time because even if we werent together i would raise them the same. its our responsibility as mothers of mixed children to raise them knowing and embracing exactly who they are otherwise they could possibly grow up to have a complex about their heritage

savoycabbage Fri 31-Aug-12 23:00:35

PS cinnamon, I know this isn't your question but I am always telling my girls how much they look like or act like me. The shape of their hands, the way they run, the way they like a lie in on a Sunday etc. I have found a baby photo of me and put it in a frame with one of them at the same age and I bang on about how we look like each other.

savoycabbage Fri 31-Aug-12 22:55:40

My dh is only 1/4 black too but he looks black so he says he is black. He has a brother and sister who don't look black. If he didn't say he was black or tick the black box people would behmm

His grandmother was black African, his grandfather was white Scottish. On the other side his grandfather was Chinese and his grandmother was Portuguese.

I still never know what box to tick and my dd1 is 8.

Mine have curly hair which makes them look more like they have black heritage I think.

marsiettina Fri 31-Aug-12 22:45:55

If I saw your son, I would think firstly he was European, but with his dark eye colour would be able to guess that somewhere in his family there was a black person. Living in London there are a whole range of different family histories, so no-one would question if you ticked mixed.

When I had my daughter everyone asked if she was half Japanese and were surprised when I said her dad was Italian. I am black and my dh is Italian. My son looks b/w mixed race, but my daughter looks like a black and asian mix.

Your son is very cute and only you can decide what to tick.

CinnamonPreztel Sat 25-Aug-12 20:59:41

Thanks thixotropoic, my ds knows it too haha! And love the espresso eyes reference, rather suitable for ds too!

discrete Sat 25-Aug-12 20:13:40

Not all children are born with blue eyes. Mine were both born with dark brown, practically black, eyes.

Frontpaw Sat 25-Aug-12 17:57:54

DS used to have 'espresso' eyes. No - not just because they were dark, but they also kept me wide awake (the child who never slept)

Frontpaw Sat 25-Aug-12 17:56:24

'He's (DS) Italian, I can tell, I'm italian'
'Errr, nope'
'Well your DH is italian, I've seen him'
Narrowing of eyes and contemplates next question before I offer:
'But people often think that...'

thixotropic Sat 25-Aug-12 15:25:50

Nothing helpful to add, but yr ds is cute as a button.

CinnamonPreztel Sat 25-Aug-12 15:16:17

Lol yes a Spanish parent at DS' nursery asked if ds was spanish! I too think he looks Italian/ Spanish. It is strange to see him next to his father, who has an afro and looks more than 1/4 African. I wonder how ds will view himself, we live in a small city which is 99% white british, ds' dad was the only black pupil in the school where we met.

Ds was born with blue eyes but they are now a very dark brown like his dad's, I call them his "minstrel eyes" lol they are beautiful.

Frontpaw Fri 24-Aug-12 23:02:58

Babies do tend to have a weird watery/greyish colour but eyes can change anyway - not just white babies. Mine changed from dark chocolate to bright green at some point along the way - not really sure when!). DSs eyes were the weird watery coffee brown colour and he is mixed.

HiHowAreYou Fri 24-Aug-12 22:46:56

I have one black grandparent, but I look white, as do both my parents really, Dad just looks tanned or Italian / Turkish / Spanish, so I've always just put white British on forms, and that's what I think of myself as.
Funny, I've honestly never wondered before if I ought to consider myself mixed race...
I'm pretty sure I'm just plain old white British!

MoRaw Fri 24-Aug-12 22:24:55

Yes, apparently white babies are born with blue eyes. I think also mixed race babies too. My son was born with blue eyes. His eyes are now hazelish/greenish with blue outer rims.

suburbophobe Fri 24-Aug-12 22:18:38

Great thread! Interesting mixes.

My DS has an African father - I am Euri - but is very light-skinned and got more of my hair.
When on the beach for a day I am red and he is dark brown LOL

The weirdest thing I was ever asked by a stranger was if he was adopted.... and she was a brunette with a blonde child. It would never occur to me to ask a stranger such a personal question....

Your son is lovely OP, and you are right to let him know he is mixed-race. You wouldn't want to negate that part of him.

marriednotdead Fri 24-Aug-12 22:12:02

It's an absolute minefield isn't it!

I am mixed race (white English/Bangaladeshi/Mauritian). I look vaguely Asian but with frizzy curly hair. DD's father is black Carribean but she looks as Asian as I do.

DS's father is white English although some of his features make us wonder if there is a distant non-white ancestor. DS looks white most of the time although I've always written mixed race on forms. His peers he questioned it all when he started secondary school and he logically decided that he had to be mixed race based on my appearance. When we came back from holiday he was darker than me and the doubters were silenced. We've been to Turkey a few times and the locals are always convinced he is one of their own grin

PurplePidjin Fri 24-Aug-12 21:52:15

Fascinating thread, thank you. We're expecting our first in December and he'll be an interesting mix. I'm a mash up of various parts of England and Irekand, DP is Jamaican and therefore lots of influences - he has green eyes, his dad's were blue, for example, despite all other characteristics being "typical" Black Carribean.

I can't wait to find out, could be absolutely anything from freckly ginger onwards!

Stupid question... Will our baby have blue eyes? I've heard all babies do, but i live in a predominantly white area so am sceptical of this All they speak of...

TwllBach Fri 24-Aug-12 21:44:23

I've often wondered what I will say my children are. My father is half Bangladeshi but I have quite pale skin. I've been told I could be Italian, Latino, eastern European or welsh (!) although my brother was picked on for looking Turkish.

My nieces definitely look 'mixed' but you can't really put your finger on anything definite - they just have a 'non Anglo Saxon' look IYSWIM. Rather like your DS, who is just beautiful by the way grin

I will keep watching this thread with interest, thanks OP!

MoRaw Fri 24-Aug-12 21:33:42

Cinnamon, I showed my husband the pic of our son and he thinks he looks Western European - Italian, Spanish, etc.

LOL! What fun your son is going to have when trying to tick the boxes.

discrete Fri 24-Aug-12 20:41:50

I consider my children to be mixed race and both dh and I are white.

However, between us we can claim 7 different ethnicities and 5 different passports among our parents and grandparents, so I think we are well and truly mixed.

Skin colour is irrelevant.

My sister has two dc, one is much, much paler than the other, but they are both mixed race.

I also know someone who describes himself as black although his skin is the same colour as mine. Apparently it is the hair that makes someone black or not in his country of origin (caribbean).

NewlyMintedPeasant Fri 24-Aug-12 20:37:08

I have this issue, I'm as white as white can be plus eastern european which people (especially thanks to panorama now) seem to see as the land of the whites. I'd had more than one midwife offer to correct the 'mixed box' or question it, it's always a faff to explain. I've even had to point out that ds (who is white blond/ blue eyes) has an epicanthic fold, otherwise known as 'asain eyes', as do many in my family. Cue looooong explaination that the Soviet Union had a HUGE range of ethnic groups and a lot of moving around.

It is important though to have 'mixed' on medical forms, it's been relevant to my medical history.

Quip Fri 24-Aug-12 20:31:09

You can always opt for "other" when you have to fill in what your race is. I always do this for my kids and myself.

Corygal Fri 24-Aug-12 20:28:06

I'm desperate to lurk here as I never know what to put for ME - I'm sheet white and blonde but a quarter Indian. (Mum came out very pale but uncle is not white.)

CinnamonPreztel Fri 24-Aug-12 20:22:24

Wow, well my son's elbows, knees and back of his neck go pretty much completely brown. Nail beds slightly darker, we will see!

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