Connect
To Top

Ask Rene: What To Do About This Teenage Dating Dilemma?

 

Young couple standing back-to-back on the outskirts of a city

Ask Rene:
What To Do About This Teenage Dating Dilemma?

 

Dear Rene:

Dropping my son off at school one morning, I pointed out an African American girl and said, “She’s cute”. My son replied, “I only like Hispanic girls!”

It’s not that I do not want him to date outside of his race it’s just kind of hurtful that he does not want to date an African American girl, you know, someone that looks like his mom. Perhaps even more hurtful, he has not even TRIED! Am I wrong for feeling this way?

Feeling Rejected

 

Dear Feeling Rejected:

You don’t say how old your son is but if you were dropping him off I’m going to guess he’s in middle school or a lower classman in high school. For the sake of this answer, I am going to assume he is in 8th grade. One of the things I love about kids is that they, for the most part, are pure; they have not been polluted with issues of race and gender (too much) and that’s a good thing. So if your 14-year-old son, whose hormones and feelings are just starting to stir, goes to a school that is heavily Hispanic, that is what he sees and will be attracted to.

When I was young, I went to middle school in Yuba City, California. My first boyfriend was white, my first kiss was to a white guy and I dated my share of white guys in college. The issue for me, quite frankly was one of access. It’s not that I was not attracted to black young men; heck I had a wicked crush on Michael Jackson! But my high school was predominantly white. There were only about 12 other black students, half of them were girls and one was my own sister! So you can see I just didn’t have an opportunity to meet African American boys my age. Because of that (kids were trying to conform and not a lot of them dated outside their race) I went to exactly two dances in high school with the only other black guy at the school. We did not particularly like each other and shared only one thing in common, the color of our skin. The dates were short and not a whole lot of fun.

Of course, all that changed when I got to college. Not only did my circle of friends get bigger, I started dating people who I was genuinely interested in, with mutual likes and tastes, no matter their race. My parade of paramours could well have been mistaken for a meeting of the UN general assembly. Having said that, here’s my advice for you.

 

3. Model The Kinds Of Traits Your Son Should Look For In A Young Lady

Picture 3 of 4

Personally, I can think of several more important than race. Love, kindness, forgiveness, understanding, patience, and being supportive of your son are the things that really matter and they come in people of all colors. Try focusing on that instead.

2 Comments

  1. pattyrowland

    October 8, 2014 at 7:41 am

    we’re white and my daughter dated a black kid and a korean kid before she was 21…i didn’t think about it too much but did think that it was cool that she didn’t let their race affect her thinking…you’re attracted to who you’re attracted to…it’s all chemicals so why worry about trying to stop whatever it is that you don’t like? like rene said, hopefully he’ll get with a girl that has the right traits and values, regardless of her heritage…pretty soon we’ll all be the same anyway so what does it matter?

  2. Michael Taylor

    October 8, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    As a man who happens to be black and the father of three grown children (28, 31, 33) I felt compelled to respond to this question. When my daughter was a teenager she asked me how I would feel if she dated a white guy. I could sense her hesitancy in asking the question but because she and I have always had an open honest relationship I was proud that she brought up the topic even though she was obviously nervous.

    I remember looking in her eyes and smiling and then I simply told her that the most important thing she needed to do was to find a guy who would love her as much as I do and as long as they shared the same values, had similar interests and he treated her with respect I would have absolutely no problem with him.

    I’ll never forget how my daughter hugged me and said “you are the greatest dad in the world and I love you.” It was possibly one of the proudest moments I’ve had as a father. I was proud that she asked my opinion and even more proud that she was open minded enough to consider dating someone outside of her race. Interestingly enough she didn’t have any guy in mind she simply wanted to know how I would feel if she did.

    Without question this country has a ways to go in regards to race, but I am optimistic that the current generation of children are evolving past the antiquated ideas that falling in love with someone of a different race is in any way wrong or unacceptable.

    I agree with you in regards to allowing our children the freedom to choose who they want to love and not let our own biases affect their decision. I believe that she should teach her son to be respectful, caring and honest with whoever he chooses to date and as you mentioned, “do not lay your own issues of race on your son.”

    If she will simply love her son and allow him to trust his own heart he will probably make the right decision. His preferences will change as he grows up but ultimately he must find someone with the same internal values and qualities as his versus just their skin color.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in Ask Rene

Combing the aisles at Target in search of the best deal on Cheerios, it hit Rene Syler like the stench of a dirty diaper on a hot summer’s day. Not only is perfection overrated its utterly impossible! Suddenly empowered, she figuratively donned her cape, scooped up another taco kit for dinner and Good Enough Mother was born.

Copyright © 2017 Good Enough Mother® Designed By ABlackWebDesign