Raising Our Biracial Kids in Suburbia

I grew up in a relatively rough neighborhood.  I realized quickly that I didn’t want to raise a family in that same environment.

After six years in the Air Force I decided I would move to Texas to finish college.  Eventually, I got a job where I met my husband.  We lived in an apartment community in a good area in town.  When we got pregnant we both decided to purchase a single family home further into the suburbs.  We wanted our child(ren) to have a big backyard and the freedom to run around at all times of the day.  I was 38 weeks pregnant when we closed on our house.

When the time came for me to go back to work we started scouting daycares.  We realized we did not live in a diverse area.  I am first generation American, my parents were Peruvian immigrants, and my husband is black.  Our kids don’t quite look like anyone else here – they have an olive tone and very thick, curly hair.

My hope for my children is that they are able to grow up without feeling like anomalies.

Though my early childhood was spent in a bad neighborhood we ended up moving to a better area when I was seven.  My parents were thrilled but I was in hell.  I was tirelessly teased by most of the kids at my school.  Almost all of it stemmed from the fact that I physically looked differently than they did.

I have been so traumatized that I am seriously considering homeschooling my kids in a couple of years.  I would have to quit my full-time job and we would probably have to move into a smaller home but I am willing to do all of this just so my kids don’t go through what I went through.  The current social climate is exacerbating my anxiety.

We have a couple of years until we have to make a firm decision but I think I already have my mind made up.

As a parent, we try our best to give our children the most opportunities to succeed.  I may just be projecting my struggles onto them which I also want to avoid.  They have so much potential and I want to instill in them that they can do anything.  I don’t really worry about Baby A because she is as headstrong a little girl as I have ever met.  It’s D who I don’t want to fail.  He is already considered different by the very nature of his diagnosis and I want to help him open as many doors as possible.

Maybe I just need to relax.

I might just be an elephant parent.

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