Interracial Dating Multicultural Resources The Art of Interracial Marriage

A Second Chance At Love-African American Woman And Indian Man

A Second Chance At Love

About

Meet Dave & Sherrae. Sherrae is African American and was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Her husband Dave is Guyanese Indian American. Dave was born and raised in Georgetown, Guyana, and his family is originally from South India. They have been together for 13 years.

Sherrae and Dave

How They Met

Dave and Sherrae, who both had previously been married, met on an online dating site. Sherrae was on the site for a two-week trial and exchanged contact information with Dave after a week. They kept in touch, talked on the phone for about a month, and then went on their first date.  

What Happened During Dave’s First Marriage

Dave was born and raised in Guyana, came to the states, and moved to New Jersey when he was 18. His mom died a few months after he arrived, and he met his first wife a few years later. Dave was married to his first wife for approximately 15 years, and they had been together for almost 20 years.

When Sherrae met Dave, he was going through a divorce. Dave’s marriage had become dreadful, and he decided to move from New Jersey and live with his sister, brother-in-law, and their kids. Dave needed some time to find his own place.

How Dave’s His Family React To Him Being With Sherrae

Sherrae’s mother-in-law died when Dave was 18, so she never had the chance to meet her. Similarly, her father-in-law died when Dave was a young boy. Nonetheless, Dave’s brothers and sisters were never a fan of Sherrae. Initially, they seemed like they were, but they harness a lot of racism and prejudice. They would often make disparaging comments about his first wife, and Sherrae would ask them not to do that. She would say, “You don’t know her side of things. He’s not perfect.”

Sherrae and Dave

Dealing With Blatant Anti-Blackness In Dave’s Family

The micro aggressions and blatant ignorance shown by Dave’s family was consuming. They felt comfortable saying to Sherrae that Dave’s ex was “ghetto” because she was also a Black woman. They often exclaimed, “she wasn’t a nice a Black girl like you.” They made comments about her hair and skin tone, and they would ask Sherrae questions about why her sister is a little lighter or why her hair gets curly when it’s wet? As a way to allude to the possibility that Sherrae could be Dougla or mixed-race because she doesn’t look like a “regular Black person.” In Guyanese, Dougla means someone that is Black & Indian. And a “regular Black person” is a darker-skinned person of African descent.

 Simply put, Dave’s family liked Sherrae enough to get him away from his ex-wife, but they never thought they would get serious. Therefore, when Dave and Sherrae moved in together, they stated, “Oh well, you’re moving too fast.” And technically, they did move fast, aiding the women in Dave’s family to frown upon their union. 

Most unfortunately, things came to a head a few years ago after one of Dave’s sister’s left him a malicious voicemail.  In it she told Dave that he wasn’t an N-word; he’s a “coolie”. Since then, Dave has been estranged from his family. 

What Happened During Sherrae’s First Marriage

Sherrae was previously married in 2001, and that didn’t go well. Overall, it was a pretty traumatic experience. 

How Did Sherrae’s Family React To Her Being With Dave

When it was time for Sherrae to tell her family about Dave, it was easy, but nobody approved at first. Sherrae has only had two exclusive boyfriends, and she married both of them. The first was her first husband, and the second was Dave. And this is the same for Dave. He has had one other girlfriend, which was his ex-wife.

Sherrae and Dave

Why Didn’t Sherrae’s Family Approve Of Dave At First

Sherrae’s parents didn’t have a problem with Dave’s race or ethnicity. Her first husband was Latino. The issue was that he was previously married, and it was a messy situation when Sherrae met him. Sherrae’s parents frowned upon divorce and loathed that Dave’s wasn’t a buttoned-up situation. Sherrae’s divorce had already been finalized, while Dave was still going through a divorce that would take him a few years to get out of, although all parties had moved on.  

What’s more, Dave has kids from a previous relationship. He has two biological and non-biological children, one of which he always claimed as his biological child. Thus, Sherrae’s parents protested, “You have this man that doesn’t come from a lot of money, and he has kids.” It was all problematic for Sherrae’s parents, who weren’t happy about their relationship. It took about six months for them to feel like, “Oh, ok, this relationship is a good idea.”

What Issues Have They Dealt With As The Result Of Being An Interracial Couple

Dave and Sherrae have dealt with the deep-seated and internalized loathing that persons of color have around colorism. Dave has always been the black sheep in his family because he is one of the darkest. For this reason, he has naturally gravitated toward Black people. Dave felt more accepted in Black culture, and his family didn’t like it. 

Case in point: when his sister left the scathing voicemail a few years ago saying Dave would end up dead in a year, Sherrae is horrible, and he needs to get out of this relationship because she is awful for him, and she is going to destroy his life. Followed by the words, “You’re not an N-word; you’re a coolie.” And what’s even scarier is that this sister works in social services at a hospital. She has always talked about having great relationships with the Black people she works with while being a covert racist.  

Likewise, Dave’s other sister is the same way, and on top of this, things used to become competitive. Dave’s sisters define how good of an Indian he is based on who he is with. If Sherrae cooked certain Indian dishes, it became a highly stressful competition early on in their relationship until the final incident occurred. 

Sherrae and Dave

How Do Dave And Sherrae Work Through The Obstacles

Sherrae put her foot down and told Dave they must protect “us” when it came to his family. Together they have to protect their peace, or else she can’t do this. It was very stressful for them to do this, but they did. Sherrae, in particular, is not a fan of tradition over family. She is not a fan of tradition over love; instead, Dave is her priority. Hence, she would tell her family that she loves them and respects them, but there is nobody in any capacity of her life that could ever feel like they get the ability to disrespect Dave. And Dave’s family and anyone he comes into contact with must also understand this. That’s how they have worked through the challenges thus far.

Dave & Sherrae’s Wedding 

Dave and Sherrae had a destination wedding in Mexico. She added some elements of Dave’s culture to the invites to make it feel like a piece of his culture was there. 

Dave and Sherrae

What Are Their Top Tips To An Interracial Relationship

Sherrae and Dave’s advice for other couples:

  • First, you have to assess what is more important to you both individually. If tradition is more important than how you feel about the relationship or your partner, these takeaways probably won’t be for you. And if it is, that’s ok, but you have to understand that tradition may directly conflict with what is best for the relationship and for your partner. 
  • If the love you have for your partner and the respect you have for your partner and the relationship itself is what comes first, then you have to remember that tradition is a man-made concept. No matter how many decades and generations ago it was written, it’s merely manufactured, and you can rewrite it at any time. 
  • When you look at what’s important, you have to look at how that goes along with the core values you identify with and the values you choose to have as a couple. One value that Dave and Sherrae have, for example, is that nobody comes before them. For Sherrae, nobody comes before him; for Dave, nobody comes before her except for themselves. They believe you have to put your self-care first, and then after your own basic needs, it’s your mate and the relationship. 
  • Ensure there is a level of reciprocity in the relationship and established boundaries. 
  • Look at ways you can fuse your cultures. Many things within African American culture have been stolen or appropriated. Therefore, Sherrae teaches Dave about those things. She doesn’t just show him pop culture or American culture, and he’s taught her many things about his culture over the years. They want to pass those things on to one another and Sherrae’s bonus kids. He’s tried to do it with them, realizing it didn’t happen as much as he wanted. It’s also the message he wants to pass on to their future children. It’s essential to know all of you and accept all the parts of your culture and ethnicity that make you unique. 

What Do They Love About Being In An Interracial Relationship

Dave and Sherrae love that they are so much more alike than different in many ways. Dave often says, “that’s just Indian people,” and I think, “Nah, it’s pretty much the same for a lot of Black folks too.” Sometimes people don’t realize it because we are so busy looking at the differences. And the differences are beautiful; they should be celebrated. 

They both believe that it’s easy to forget that there are various similarities between different cultures. CPT (colored people time) tends to be a lot of ethnic groups, not just Black Americans. The fact that certain things center around respecting your elders or living for your parents and other traditional values applies to a lot of folks.

What Are They Still Learning-Individually Or Collectively About Interracial Relationships

 Sherrae never intended to be in an interracial relationship. Most of the people she dated were African American guys. It just so happens that both people who fell in love with her and wanted to marry her weren’t Black. As a result, she has learned colorism will always play a more prominent role in things versus racism or challenges with ethnic groups. Sherrae feels like many couples get flack for being in interracial or intercultural relationships, and most of the time, it’s because their partner is white. 

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Are you following us at www.growingupgupta.com yet? Please find us on Instagram and Pinterest @growingupguptas and on Twitter @growingupgupta, Facebook @growingupguptablog.

This post contains affiliate links that support the operation of this blog!

 

 

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