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My brother stepped up and tried to be my pseudo Dad by doing things like fixing my broken faucet and expressing his discontent being the executor of the will now that my name was removed. I think she feels like my Dad’s intent was to protect me from a bad situation, but also acknowledged that Aaron was a good guy and I was an adult capable of making my own decisions. They were surprised by both my Dad and Aaron’s reaction.The reactions of my black friends and coworkers were the most interesting.Aside from the occasional comment on the freeway my dad never said anything about race. He responded saying and there was no point in trying to correspond with him. There was a pause, followed by “I wish you wouldn’t have told me that so I would still think the world is a cool place”.More awkward silence, lack of eye contact, blank face.Your parents are supposed to be the only people you can count on to love you unconditionally.And yet here he was, proposing ridiculous conditions in order for us to even be in the same room together.I’ll never forget the day I was walking to my car at work and spotted a tall, dark, and handsome guy walking towards me dressed in all black. As he got closer, I realized he was a former college classmate and coworker that I had known casually for years; Aaron. I was nervous and excited to bring Aaron over to meet my family. I’m a deceivingly outgoing introvert, but it was noticeable that I became withdrawn.

I think I always had a high bar when it came to dating because my dad really had it all; he was tall, dark, and handsome, educated, successful, ethical, funny, athletic, and handy. He was a tall, blonde, surfer that ended up moving to San Diego for college and that was the end of that. My aunt, however, told me both Aaron and I were welcome over for Christmas so I jumped at the opportunity.

He shared some of his negative experiences with African-Americans and how they treated women in the Marines and what he felt the view of white women dating black men was.

The email contained conditions for us working things out beginning with “you have to agree not to engage in this kind of behavior again” meaning that I would have to agree not to date black guys.

Some shrugged it off as being a typical reaction and just part of the everyday racism they experience as a people.

Others said Aaron and I should have known what we were getting into.

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