from?" thing gets old fast, but that's so minor compared to everything else I've experienced. How can I keep my chin up as a minority who is living in a place that is 90% white?
My question is somewhat similar to this one
, except this time it's a matter of ethnicity.
I grew up in a diverse place, but am now in an overwhelmingly white part of the country. Moving away is not a realistic option for now. Since I've moved here, I've dealt with these all these little annoyances-- people who speak to me slowly and loudly because they think I am a foreigner and cannot understand, being sexually assaulted by a white man who I later found out had a "thing" for women of my background, having supervisors at work who default to calling me "quiet" in their evaluations and claim that I lack leadership skills regardless of how I behave... (When I brought it up to administration, I was in turn accused of "accusing others of discrimination" and was basically told that what I've experienced isn't real, so... that's that.)
In general, nothing ever rises to the point that I can call them out on it (doing so would only make me
seem oversensitive anyway). I understand that people who say things like that honestly don't mean to be insulting, and most of the time they are just curious.
It is also possible that I'm being somewhat oversensitive-- at least, I don't ever see any of my non-white friends complaining about it; they seem perfectly happy here. My parents have told me that I am being oversensitive and I should accept that this is part of being a minority and just develop a sense of humor about it, because "other minorities have it much worse." I wish I could, but I don't know how to let this roll off my back! The cumulative effects are like water cutting into stone, and little by little, I realize that I'm experiencing this heavy sense of disillusionment, isolation and sadness. I'm not depressed, but I feel like I'm a nobody. I keep thinking that maybe it was a mistake that my parents immigrated, or maybe that I should just drop everything and go back to my parents' home country, where what I look like or what my last name is doesn't automatically imply
things about me (although obviously that is not at all a possibility).
On top of that, there's this implied sentiment that I am not in a position to complain about the assumptions made about me because on average, the assumptions are "positive" -- that I'm this cute, quiet, intelligent, studious thing
, I wish these traits were things that I could truly own
, but no, these are traits, regardless of whether they are true of myself or not, plastered
on to me.
It's one thing to have threads
and funny videos
about microaggressions, but it's another to have to live with them. ... Please help me deal with or be less sensitive about this.