When looking for a relationship, we all have our prerequisites for our potential boo: a steady job, dirty blonde hair, no irreversible emotional damage, etc. You know, the important stuff.
We create our list of “must haves” because we feel that we're more compatible with people who possess certain characteristics. However, on our list of requirements, how often do specify that our match should be of a certain ethnicity?
We've come pretty far in modern society in terms of political correctness, and we've learned that it's important to love and appreciate diversity.
The most forward thinking individuals would not dare to distinguish the ethnicity of their potential love interests. But, in such a color blind society, can we whitewash the issue of culture?
Experiencing different cultures with a person on an intimate level can be both exciting and unpredictable; it can also cause couples to clash. A person may believe in and practice a religion, while their significant other doesn't care for it, while another couple deals with the debate on whether white rice deserves a spot in the kitchen pantry.
It's with these cultural — big and small — differences that some couples may find it difficult to keep the peace. I dated a Muslim guy who wasn't even supposed to date. I couldn't meet his parents and we could never eat pulled pork sandwiches together.
Though I knew the relationship wouldn't be going anywhere, I still found it a bother that I had to consume ribs alone at a restaurant that he considered to contaminate his religious purity. His culture did not contribute to my happiness and the relationship was over in less than five months.
On the other hand, I am currently dating someone of the same ethnicity and culture as me, and I can tell you now, we fit. We have the same morals, sets of values and he even appreciates my fondness for anything pork. He gets me and he doesn't even have to front.
Even though my experience with someone of a different culture was something less than extraordinary, I can't help but think of those relationships that have thrived because of the difference.
So, I did a little digging with some of my bi-racial couple friends and found that their cultural differences are the solid glue that binds them together, and that fried eggs with white rice actually tastes delicious. It's an overall learning experience to embrace your partner's culture, while still embracing them in bed with a clear conscience.
So, whether or not you want to take a chance with someone of a different culture, think about it with an open mind, because being able to share your favorite food with someone might be important to you, or maybe being deprived of it will open you up to new things. However you may think of it, my friend sensibly insists, “as long as you're happy, it's whatevs.”
Brittany Tai | Elite. follow her on twitter: @brittanytai