Meeting your partner’s family is a milestone almost every serious relationship comes to.
But for one Redditor that event raised serious questions about her boyfriend and her relationship.
Redditor ThrowRA8908 posted:
“I heard my boyfriend’s parents say something racist about me”
The Original Poster (OP) explained her situation:
“My boyfriend (25 M[ale]) and I (23 F[emale]) have been dating for a year now. To give a bit more context, he’s white and 100% Canadian, and I was born in Kenya (moved to Canada when I was 1).”
“I had never met his parents because they live 3 hours away from us and he’s not super close to them anyway.”
But then with the pandemic, an opportunity to visit and meet the parents arose.
“When lockdown started and both our jobs closed, he asked if I wanted to spend a few weeks with them, so I could meet them and visit his hometown. I said ‘sure, sounds fun!'”
“We drove there on a Friday night and when my [boyfriend] (bf) introduced me to his parents, they were super nice. We were talking, laughing, all that good stuff.”
“When it was getting late, my bf and I decided to prepare for bed and went upstairs. When he was already in bed, he realized he forgot his charger downstairs and asked me if I could please go get it.”
The OP then got a shock.
“When I was walking down the stairs, I heard his mother (still at the kitchen table) mention my name, so being nosy, I stopped and listened. They said I was nice and I was happy to hear that, but then his father said ‘it’s a shame she’s a nigg*r though’.”
“His mother answered ‘as long as he doesn’t marry her, it’s fine. And he won’t, he knows we would be disappointed’.”
“I kind of froze up, waited for them to change the subject, got my bf’s charger and went upstairs.”
OP is at a loss for how to react.
“I didn’t know how to feel, and I still don’t. I’m lucky enough to have never dealt with this kind of racism, so I’m a bit lost on what to do.”
“What his mother said implies my bf knows his parents are not happy with him being with me. Is this why he’s waited so long to introduce them to me?”
“And why didn’t he warn me that his parents don’t want him dating a black girl? Do I even talk to him about it?”
The OP was torn between addressing the issue and the fear of causing “more drama.”
“I don’t want to cause more drama, but at the same time, I’m mad. And also sad.”
“I know we’re not there yet, but would his parent’s disapproval stop him from marrying me? And if we have kids, will their grandparents hate them because they’re not white enough?”
“I love my boyfriend so much and I know he loves me, but I don’t know what to do and how to go about this.”
Reddit was ready to offer the advice this woman sought.
Most advised she talk to her boyfriend.
Maybe this is why he isn’t close to his parents.
“You definitely need to talk with you bf about this.”
“You need the emotional support and loving care to remind you that he chose you and to hell with his racist parents. Let him deal with them and don’t try to bottle up these emotions.” ~ tercer78
“Talk to your boyfriend. Sounds like he isnt close to them for a reason.” ~ xoxoLizzyoxox
“If your boyfriend knows they don’t approve of you, my guess is he didn’t tell you because he didn’t want to subject you to that kind of treatment and maybe that is why he waited so long to introduce you to them.”
“Your boyfriend also sounds sweet and I don’t believe he meant to purposefully put you in a situation in which you had to face those comments.” ~ its_that_redhead
“Almost crying reading this. So sorry you had to hear that, you should definitely speak to your bf about this. And to me, he should say something to them too.” ~ Bright-Bee
“He needs to stand up to them TOMORROW. You still have 2 more weeks there. He needs to confront them and tell them how f’ed up it is.”
“Definitely tell your boyfriend. I can’t believe they called you the n word either, dispicable.” ~ bunkbedgirl1989
Some were adamant the relationship was over and some even blamed her boyfriend.
“You should leave. The apple doesn’t fall to far from the tree.” ~ cbyrd_
“Leave the relationship. If you decide to stay and have kids with this man, you’ll be responsible for whatever racist treatment your kids receive from his side of the family.”
“You heard his Dad utter that disgusting slur. Don’t say you weren’t warned.” ~ LineOutMaster123
“Not the main point of this but—Your bf asked you to walk through his parents house and grab his charger for him on the first night you got there?”
“Why didn’t he go and get it himself?” ~ XRhodesFilms
“‘He knows we would be disappointed’ sounds like he is familiar with his parent’s racism and still invited a Black girl to a place that doesn’t welcome Black people, which puts you in danger.” ~ sugarbear88
But some advised there was more than one option and the OP should choose which one felt right for her.
“As an older woman of color, I’ve had to address situations like this in the past.”
“Do you see a real future with this man? If you do, then you can’t just let it go.”
“If you’re willing to recognize this is not a long term relationship and you’re fine just letting it run its course because you’re having fun, then don’t bring it up. But you need to know that your relationship has an expiration date.”
“If you do decide to address it, I’ve found the best thing is just tell the other person what happened. Don’t discuss it in the context of ‘I feel’ or any of your own reactions. Just state ‘When I went to get your charger the other night I overheard your parents and they said this…’.”
“Then see what your boyfriend has to say. You’ll get his honest reaction more than you will if you frame it with your own feelings and emotions.”
“Based on his reaction, you might have some hard decisions to make. If he’s like ‘What’s the big deal?’ do you want to be with someone like that? Or you may end up even closer because he knows his parents are toxic.”
“Whatever you decide to do, make sure it’s what you can live with. Not just what a bunch of strangers think you should do.” ~ LakotaGrl
The OP provided an update.
She chose to speak to her boyfriend.
“I decided to tell my boyfriend what happened. I told him last night, at 2AM.”
“He was livid. I barely had time to finish the story before he started packing our bags.”
But it wasn’t the only conversation that would happen before sunrise.
“He kept on apologizing for the situation he put me in, and I could see how horrible he felt about all of this. He told me he wanted to talk to his parents about what they said and asked if I wanted to be a part of the conversation or if I’d rather wait in the car.”
“Not being a person who likes confrontation at all, I hesitated but ultimately said I wanted to be there. I just didn’t want to actively participate in the conversation, I was too uncomfortable.”
“He woke his parents up, sat them down and told them what I had heard. They were clearly extremely uncomfortable and kind of just stared at him, like they couldn’t believe he was doing this.”
“He told them it was unacceptable and how ashamed he was of them. He also told them that when/if we would decide to speak to them again, they better be ready to sincerely apologize and do better, because he wouldn’t tolerate anything else.”
“He also mentioned that their opinion would have no impact on who he would decide to marry. His mom looked like she wanted to say something but he didn’t let her, got up and we left.”
The couple also had a chance to talk more on the ride home.
Her boyfriend was not completely shocked by his parents’ comments.
“We were quite shaken up on the ride home, but he took the time to explain to me what he knew of why his parents behaved this way.”
“Basically, he remembers his parents making racist remarks here and there when he was little (not just about Black people but POC in general). He didn’t really know it was wrong until he got out of his hometown and realized his parents were very wrong in their views.”
“With time, he saw his parents less and less, because their views regarding race and other issues just didn’t align with his at all anymore and it would create animosity every time he visited them.”
“When he met me, even before we became a couple and were just friends, he would often post pictures of us on Facebook and his parents would see them. They never mentioned anything.”
“When they learned that we were a couple, they said they wanted to meet me, and he wasn’t sure of their sincerity. He said they talked about me when they would call him, and for a whole year, my bf basically tried to make sure that they were actually okay with our relationship.”
“His parents kept saying not to worry, that they had learned from their past mistakes, asking him to trust them. After a year, he finally believed them and that’s when he decided to introduce us.”
He had high hopes that his parents had changed their world view.
“He was so happy to see how nice and accepting they were towards me. He said it himself, he was too naive.”
But the OP doesn’t blame him.
“He was pretty much crying telling me this, but I could tell he tried not to because he felt responsible and didn’t want to make it about himself. Maybe it makes me dumb, but I don’t blame him.”
“I know him, and he wouldn’t put me in a situation like that on purpose. I believe him when he says he truly thought they changed.”
“He apologized numerous times and told me I never had to see them again, and that he wouldn’t either for a very long while. He was already not close with them, and this situation didn’t help at all.”
“He made it a point to say that what his mother said about him wasn’t true (that he wouldn’t marry me because he knows they would disapprove).”
As for their relationship, his parents’ racism will not come between them.
“We talked about it a lot since last night. We barely slept. And I decided I do want to stay with him.”
The OP also addressed some of the advice she received.
“A big majority of the comments under my last post told me that my best option was to leave him, a lot of it coming from POC. And I understand why.”
“But, I do love him very much and I really do not want to leave him because his parents hate our relationship. I think I would regret it.”
“I’m not saying it’ll be easy and maybe I am making a mistake, but I want to be with him. Maybe it’s disappointing to a lot of you, but it’s my decision.”
While OP may have felt many were pressuring her to end the relationship, the advice to at least discuss what happened with her boyfriend before making a decision was the highest rated by other Redditors.