Asians Who Hate Other Asians

I'm Japanese American and my girlfriend in high school was Vietnamese American. Luckily my parents were pretty much fine with whomever I dated. But my girlfriend's parents hated my guts right off the bat. When we first started dating, she would make me park my car around the block so her parents wouldn't be able to see me. After a few months of this, she let me pick her up at the door and her parents were literally eyeballing me from behind her. She didn't tell them that my ancestry was Japanese because she said that would really **** them off, but I guess they could tell that I wasn't Vietnamese from my facial features and mannerisms.

It really frustrated me because I felt like they weren't even willing to give me a chance. As far as boyfriends go, I kind of thought that I was pretty "parent friendly". I was a straight A student and had recently been accepted into UC Berkeley for engineering. I was in pretty decent shape, dressed pretty conservatively for high school and was extra polite around adults. I even started learning Vietnamese because I thought it might impress her parents. But I was never able to get past the front door with them. Eventually, I went off to college (she was a year behind me) and we ended up breaking it off.

I guess I never really understood families like that. I mean, here they are living in the United States, the melting pot of the world. They come all the way over here from Vietnam, and they insist that their daughter dates only other Vietnamese? Maybe it was the fact that I was Japanese that they didn't like? Maybe they would have been ok with a Chinese, Thai, Korean or some other Asian background that didn't invade their country during WWII or something.

Anyway, that was a really disappointing experience for me. I grew up in the United States believing that we are all Americans. It wasn't until non-Asians started pointing that I was different from them, that I even noticed there was anything "different" about me. Eventually, I was able to put that behind me. But then having to put up with prejudice from people who are essentially members of the same race just seemed ridiculous to me. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised. There are probably still some people who don't like people unless their ancestors came from the same small village in Bulgaria or something.
lmori lmori
4 Responses Dec 30, 2010

If you watch the flowers of war movie you will get the idea of what chinese and korean people feel about japanese people. has nothing to do with you but history. All you can do is set a good example for your self and see people as equals.

I'm really sorry to hear about your ex-girlfriend's parents treating you that way. I'm a Vietnamese female also currently in a relationship with a Japanese male. Luckily, my family is perfectly fine with him and his family is fine with me as well. But I know what you mean by how frustrating it can be when you're faced with discrimination by people of your own race. I haven't faced out-right, obvious racism from other Asians in real life yet but I've seen quite a few Asians who discriminate against other Asians on the internet, and I admit it's pretty annoying. And I'm not talking about the older Asians who are in their 40s or 50s, I'm talking about younger Asians who are near mine and your age. Many would simply define that being Asian requires you to be of either Chinese, Japanese, or Korean descent and THAT'S IT. If you are anything else, to them, you're not Asian. Fortunately, most Asian-Americans I've met don't think that way but a few do. And it's the few that do that generally try to exclude the likes of me from being considered as "part of the race" simply because I'm Viet and not Chinese, Japanese, or Korean. It is heartbreaking to me and it saddens me quite a bit to know that not only do some whites look down on me, but also do some people I thought were my own race. So yeah, I get what you mean by how ridiculous it is when members of your own race discriminate against you.

Thanks for your thoughts guys. I guess a lot of what makes people the way they are (good or bad) is who they hang out with. My circle of best friends throughout most of my school years consisted of a Caucasian, an Indian, a Latino, a Korean and a Chinese. But I have to admit, I think we were a rarity at our school. Most of the other cliques at our school consisted of kids who were pretty much carbon copies of one another. <br />
<br />
One of my best friends was Korean and he took me to a Korean dance club somewhere in LA and I nearly got my *** kicked when some of the regulars found out I was Japanese and dancing with a Korean girl. My friend and I had no idea that that sort of animosity existed among asians in the U.S. I guess it's natural to want to hang with people from the same background and be suspicious of people from different backgrounds. <br />
<br />
Personally, I don't really like hanging out with people just like me. I prefer meeting people from completely different cultures. And I tend to become friends with people who feel the same way. I guess that explains my friends.

I have a Vietnamese friend at work. I really feel for the guy. Here in Houston there is an abundance of Latinos, most of whom are Catholic. This guy is Catholic, a rarity for a Vietnamese man. He is not accepted by Latinos because of his race, he is not accepted by his own because of his faith. We have been to the brink of a strange racial/national brawl over this before where Mexican were giving him grief and I stood up for him. More Mexicans came over and nearly surrounded us. Salvadorians then came to our aid. Really? in 2010 and at work?. All because someone looks different? Bad thing is that they were immigrants too, and shared a faith with the Vietnamese guy. To add to the weirdness I had an uncle who was killed in the Vietnam war, another 2 who where injured, and his father was killed by an American bomb. I really need to leave this place. They say that small towns in KY like the one that I am from are backward, but damn!