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I've dated other races aside from black men—my first and only boyfriend of two years was Korean. "My parents, I should say, have never forbidden me from dating black men, or a man of any race, but their silence, more so my mother's, has been felt—it rendered each guy invisible.But I've never dated someone of my own ethnicity: Mexican. And I would say Colombian, but that courtship never blossomed into much after he came over my house and serenaded me with his acoustic guitar. Time and again, after being introduced to a black guy I was dating, my mother either let out heavy sighs or foretold my future under her breath. My dad used his seasonal, strictly temporary passport for work and came to Arizona to pick fruit.

My dad knew that in order to ask for my mom's hand in marriage, he had to have a house ready for her. He also knew that the American Dream was the dream he wanted to achieve for them. She's always said that he's 'mi media naranja' (a Spanish saying for soul mate).

Take the segregation and gang rivalry in Los Angeles or the hate crimes in southern states, like Texas and Atlanta.

This past April, a Hispanic father attacked his 14-year-old daughter after she chose a 15-year-old black guy as her dancing partner for a pre-quinceañera party.

The curse is that those factors establish tradition.

I've experienced my share of racism and have had racial slurs thrown in my direction. I've overheard conversations about me where people spewed hateful words because they didn't think I knew English.