Anxiety.More than excitement, I felt the apprehension before he came to the Philippines. It was a country he had never stepped on, a new culture for him. Aside from that, I knew he will be using public transportation—which is not one of the best things in PH, to be honest. However, on top of everything was: the crowd.
There are stereotypes in the Philippines with interracial dating. To say some: it may mean the girl is a gold –digger because most old foreign people have really young girls with them. Second, the Filipina was once a domestic helper that found her way to date a foreigner. And third, the “exotic” beauty enticed the other person in having a relationship. Exotic, a glorified term to say your look doesn’t top the definition of beauty. Others even say, “Mukang katulong” (She looks like a maid). It’s not a bad thing to other countries but in PH, it’s a derogatory term. These things gave me most the anxiety for I know the Philippines is a country full of judgmental people. Come on, let’s face it. Alam niyo ‘yan.
He finally arrived and my qualms came to life. I heard a lot of hurtful words not only from strangers—actually, super less with strangers—and more with people I know. I’ve been called, as expected, ugly and exotic. I’ve been said to be undeserving of him. See, words hurt me but I can shove it off and control my feelings but actions—it bites a little more.
I saw eyes looking at him then to me then when I caught them; they roll their eyes at me. I’ve seen them look with disgust or judgments. I’ve experienced people whispering about us or staring more at me.
I have no idea why it’s such a big deal, to be honest. We’re now living in millennial age and still, people act as if interracial relationship is something new. I’ve been to big cities as Rome, Paris, Antwerp and Tokyo with him and I never got what I had in the Philippines. It felt more liberating in another nation where they are more open to this kind of relationships. Maybe it’s the culture, the stereotype, the society, I don’t know.
Nonetheless, I’m done with it. The strangers don’t know me—what do I do for a living, who I am and what I’ve been through. Those who know me, well, I shrugged it off.
I won’t let anyone—especially the society—define who I am, who will I date and what I deserve. In the end, I define myself.
It did hurt—party why I blogged but mostly to make a point. But, it’s all done now.
To all the eye rolling, hate speeches and dirty stares…知るか.