Raising a mixed-race child

Guest post by Theresa

Last week I took Ayla to one of those sing-along/nursery rhyme groups for babies. It happened to take place at a senior’s residence and moms, babies, and seniors all had a good time together. After the session, a kind old lady came up to me and said, “Now who does this little sweetheart belong to?”

“Oh…she’s mine,” I replied.

“Oh…”

Ayla might be the cutest baby-as-a-bunny EVER.


For the record, I am Asian and my husband is Caucasian. Of course having a mixed race child, I did not expect my baby to look exactly like me—I just never expected her to look so different than me. With her English-rose complexion, light brown hair, big light brown eyes, and cheeks the size of Texas; Ayla is a bit of an anomaly, even amongst other half Asian/Caucasian babies who tend to have darker features.

Everybody tells me she looks like her Daddy, which is plain to see. Her looks are still changing, so perhaps in a few years she might be a spitting image of me. But for now, people seem to think that I am just the nanny.

When I go out with Ayla, people often do double-takes: they look at me–then Ayla–then me again. “What an adorable baby,” I imagine they think. “Who’s that Asian lady with her? She must be her nanny.”

I guess it’s just a bit of motherly pride as I want people to make the connection when they see us together. I want to show off my beautiful baby girl. I want to tell strangers that I carried her in my womb for nine months and have the varicose veins to prove it. But I don’t. Instead, I casually mention in the conversation that my husband is Caucasian and hope that they make the connection.

While mixed race marriages are on the rise, I guess it still takes time for people to get used to seeing families where the kids don’t exactly look like the parents. My story isn’t unique—there are tons of mixed race children out there with mamas who probably feel the same way I do.

There are a few rare cases in which biological twins from a mixed race couple are born and one is black and the other is white. Now that is a tougher one to explain.

All babies are beautiful—black, white, yellow, purple or beige. As the comedian Russell Peters says, “Everybody’s going to be beige, the whole world is mixing.”

Comments on Raising a mixed-race child

  1. I suspect my mom had some of these feelings when I was a baby. I still look more like my dad, caucasion from Louisiana,than my mom who is from Taiwan. I wonder sometimes now that I’m adult what people think as I walk hand and hand with my mother towering over her 5’1 delicate frame. I’m 5’7, large boned with wide shoulders & hips, big-breasted, with really light brown hair almost ash-blond hair and very light brown eyes, though I have my mom’s eye shape, lack of profile, super straight wide shaft hair and darker skin all that does is make me seem younger than I am. I wonder sometimes if people think we are a couple rather than mother and daughter, the same when I am out with my half-sisters from my mom’s first marriage who are also full Asian.

    Now that I’m pregnant with my own child, I wonder what she will look like with all the mixed genetic heritage she will have between my husband and I. Will she have dark skin and eyes, a delicate frame or will she be tow-headed, blue eyed and tall,or will she have strawberry blond hair, hazel-eyes be super white with a large frame or some fascinating combination that I would never be able to imagine and if we have another kid will they look anything alike at all…

  2. *hugs*
    How offensive for her to assume that you’re the nanny. I’m impressed with how graciously you handled the situation.

    As the child of a Mexican mama and American dad, I’ve been told for years, “You don’t look Mexican.” (Whatever that means.) And I always reply, “I guess you just don’t know what Mexican looks like.”

    • I completely relate to this comment. I’m a child from a mixed family. My father is hispanic, my mother is a full blown mutt. I have dark curly hair with big blue eyes and I’m about as pale as they come.

      I was raised to embrace my heritage and I think of myself as being hispanic as well as caucasion… I love both sides of my family… but I’m often told that I dont “look mexican”.

      My reply is usually along the lines of “that’s because I was born in California and not Mexico.. I look ‘American'”

      • I am Mexican as in born in Mexico, and when in the US, I constantly got the “you don’t look mexican” comment. I would simply ask “so, what does a Mexican look like?” and that would be enough for people to stop and “uhhhh …”, giving me time to walk away ^_~

  3. Where I’m from a lot of couples are adopting children from other countries. I think it’s absolutely beautiful to see all these mixed race families but I wonder if they deal with this type of negativity. It would be an interesting offbeat mama post if it hasn’t been done before.

  4. Oh, I have the exact opposite problem with my step daughter. She is half caucasian half brazilian. I am half caucasian half native american. This has left us both with dark brown hair, very dark huge eyes. People are always saying how much she looks like her mother, always assuming that I am her mother. I never know what to say….

    • I think a smile and a “thank you” would do it. I’ve had stepchildren before, and we never felt the need to explain, we would just share a giggle afterward!

    • He he, my fiance is half Singaporean and looks absolutely nothing like my children from previous relationships (blonde hair, blue eyes), yet loads of people still assume he’s their biological dad! I think it’s just them trying to be polite – they can’t really win whatever they say, if he *was* their dad and it was just one of these quirks of genetic mixing they’d be making the mistake described in this post, so it would be just as bad if not worse.

      I think people just haven’t really developed ways of understanding the world we now live in. Things were so simple in the past, it was usually clear who the parents were and if the dad didn’t look like the kids it was just politely ignored for fear of implying infidelity 🙂 Now we all have stupidly complicated relationships which we don’t even have words for (if I’m not married to my partner, is he their step dad? Is my daughter’s grandmother my “mother in law” even though I was never married to her son? And what is my son’s dad to my daughter, who has a different dad? It makes my head hurt thinking about it) and mixed race relationships producing kids who possess none of the obvious characteristics of their biological parents. You can’t really blame people for making mistakes, I suppose.

  5. I get this all the time. I’m Caucasian, my husband is Cambodian and I look NOTHING like our son. Some people make the rudest comments, “Where’d you get him?” (!?!?!?) But it’s something I’ve just gotten used to. I can’t wait for the time when the majority of babies are “beige”!!

    • I would be so tempted to reply “well, I had sex with my husband and nine months later, this guy (meaning your son) came barreling down the birth canal…”

      Rude comments deserve graphic responses, IMO. Don’t ask the question if you’re not prepared for the answer. 😉

    • I am an older mother and I often get, “Is this your grandson?”
      I tell people, “No, we just found him in a shopping cart in the parking lot and liked the look of him.”

  6. my husband is half Chinese, half black. Almost daily he gets asked “what are you? Filipino? Samoan?” And he says “Im American”. He will be a great example to our daughter who is half “white” ( whatever the hell white is), a quarter Asian, a quarter black, with brown skin, grey almond shaped eyes, and fine hair. When someone asks you a ridiculous question, give them a completely blunt answer and make them feel as embarassed as they should be.

    • my husband is gorgeous irish-french-canadian-african-cherokee-american.

      the result: he mostly gets asked if he is from the middle east! or spoken to in spanish or portuguese.

      fortunately he has a great sense of humor. he comes home and says things like, “i got moroccaned today!”

      when we have an office, we’ll put up a map with pins of “places where people think hubby is from.”

      i, on other hand, am 100% wasp yet constantly assumed to be jewish (it no longer confuses me when people wish me happy new year in september!)

      basically we view the questions/comments as humorous, good opportunities to have a discussion with someone OR (if they are closed-minded) REALLY confuse them!

      i cannot imagine the commentary that will ensue when we adopt kids!

  7. my father is mexicano/native, my mother is “heinz 57″(her words) and my siblings all look a little different, older sister very native, me halfbreed (white in the winter, brown in the summer), little sister afro-cuban, little brother, irish complete with green eyes and freckles. i HATED people asking my mom whos girls she was watching as a kid. even as a child i knew how degrading it felt.
    Fast forward to present day. my husbands mother is mexicano/native, his father white (made for each other,seriously). he looks like his dad. our son is the most beautiful shade of cocoa, huge black eyes, with his dads stick straight hair, perfect really. i was shocked, at a local restaurant that we frequent, recently when our waitress asked me why i watch him so often. i told her he was my son to much befuddlement on her part. the dumb broad then went on to say he doesn’t look like me (which by the way he has my eyes and my mouth,thank you very much!)…..so i told her “he looks alot like my dad”. she says “oh his dad?” i said firmly “NO my dad.” blank stare.

    russel couldn’t be more right. i ve been telling people since i was a kid,”someday every one will look like me.”

  8. I’m of mixed eastern and western European decent, but many Asian people have asked if I’m part Asian, due to my dark brown almond shaped eyes (that’s the eastern European part).

    My husband is half Caucasian and half Trinidadian, with the Trini being a mixed bag – mostly Indian, a little African, and a little Spanish (we think?). He and his brother are both dark like their dad, but were raised primarily by their (white) mom and her new (white) husband. Considering they were born in the late 70’s/early 80’s she actually encountered very few difficulties.

    People aaaalllwwwayysss ask what mix he is, and I get that a lot too. We’re pretty excited to see how this baby I’m baking will turn out. 🙂

  9. I can’t believe….no, that’s not right, I can totally believe it but it makes me sad and angry that people can be so ridiculous.

    My favourite response for comments like these (pretty much works for anything ignorant) is, “Wow, what a rude comment/question! You must be REALLY embarrassed right now for having asked/said that!”.

    It boggles my mind when I hear people say, “what are you?”. Unless you’re actually having a conversation about family backgrounds and origins, who cares? Clearly, people only ask because they want to know what box they should put you in, and so that they can make assumptions about what kind of person you are.

    • I grew up in the Virgin Islands, where very few people were just one race. As a result, we were all much less PC about race and asking about somebody’s race was par for the course. I only knew one girl who sighed when she was asked, and that’s because she had to list off a whole bunch of different races.

      Since moving to the States, I trained myself out of talking about race because people seem really up in arms about it here for whatever reason. When people ask about my race here, they seem really hesitant. They shouldn’t be- it should be fun to talk about your family. I don’t think it’s because they want to put you in a box; I think it’s because you look exotic.

      • I agree that it’s not always to put you in a box and make assumptions (although for some people that certainly could be it). For lots of people they are just genuinely curious, because they are interested, because you look exotic, because they want to know you better, etc. I have a degree in anthropology and stuff like this fascinates me, not because I am judging, but because I love learning about and celebrating different cultures and I am interested in their integration.

        • my husband (see comment above!) also has had the fortune of EVERYONE who has ever commented on his looks ASSUMING he is one of THEM. it is actually kind of cool – very inclusive, never racist. Italian friends’ dads think he is Italian. People speak to him in their native tongues. Barbers, people he meets on buses, etc. will say he looks “JUST LIKE” their cousin/brother/ neighbor back home. We see it as people trying to reach out to others, to make a connection. The only time he has been annoyed is when people (to date only middle-aged white women, interestingly) say, “oh, did you just get back from vacation?” and then don’t seem to understand when he tells them that no, it is his normal skin color…

      • I agree I am fascinated with other cultures. I come from a Irish Swedish father (yes he was really pink with red curly hair) and an Irish Spanish native mother. When I am tan people get confused as my race and my eye shape (almond) and color make people curious, and I am proud to explain. I do understand being offended my aunt is Korean so my cousin is Irish swedish and Korean (and cute as a button) and while I can distinctly place her features (and proudly do so we inherited the same curls and chin) my aunt laughingly recalls that people regularly think she is the nanny and we always end up in a discussion where I convince her my cousin is a spitting image of her(and she is) I can understand not wanting to be judged fir your race. But her and my mother (aside from my colouring and body type I don’t look a thing like my mom) they were more upset that others didn’t see the mom’s faces in their children.

  10. you dont have to be half one race, half the other for people to assume things. my dh and i are both caucasion, with some american indian thrown in the background somewhere ( like, so many greats you cant count them all, grandparents ). we both look totally different, and my son looks nothing like my husband.

    people give him looks like hes the step dad. more often than not we get asked ” where did he get that blonde hair from” cause dh has a dark skin tone and dark curly hair and i have light skin and nearly brown hair, and our son is pale, pasty and looks like my mother did as a child.

    ive noticed that older people tend to ask questions like this, because to see mixed race families werent as common for them when they were younger, and they just arent used to it ( at least thats the impression i get from my old folks )

  11. My ex husband is hispanic and I am caucasian, but both of our children have very pale complexion. I have even had many issues with the schools changing their race from hispanic to caucasian since they “don’t look hispanic enough”.

  12. I have a question for everyone (with complete sincerity): Is there a polite way to ask someone’s ethnicity?

    I ask this because I am as Caucasian as you can get in terms of skin color – like seriously almost see through (top that with green eyes and blond hair- pre hair dye ) and I have always been incredibly envious of everyone with all the various gorgeous skin colors and I think I am one of those rude people you guys are talking about. I never say “what are you” because I’m not that tactless. But I usually say “If you don’t mind me asking what is your (or your son’s/daughter’s) ethnicity?” But I swear I never meant to be rude. I am always genuinely interested in their ethnic backgrounds and stories. Before reading everyone’s comments, I honestly never even thought that was a rude mind set.

    Is it the tone people ask the question or the assumptions they are making that makes it a rude question?

    • This is such a great question, and I’d love some perspectives on this too. Surely there has to be a way to open discussion about cultural background in a way that conveys interest and respect.

      • It’s tough – it depends so much on the person being asked, and their personal experiences in life.

        I’m always curious because, as an anthropology grad, I’m absolutely fascinated by people and how they move around the world and their cultural backgrounds and how those mix and and and and… 🙂

        But even the most uber-polite overture could be seen in a negative light by someone who’s had previous negative experiences.

        I usually wait until the person brings something up themselves, and use that as a jumping off point…

    • I’m never offended when someone asks about my heritage or ethnicity. Being as we’re in a country (assuming you’re from the states) that is a huge, giant melting pot… I always find it interesting when the topic is brought up. The part that gets me bent is when people say “You dont look Mexican” as if I’m lying about my back ground.

      I really think it’s in how you phrase it and say it. “do you mind me asking what your ethnicity is?” vs. “what are you? filipino? mexican?” I think it’s a little odd to make an assumption about someone’s background. It’s as if the person has already made a prejudgement on you.

    • In my experience, it’s all about tone and assumptions. I’m never really offended by someone asking my ethnicity if I feel they’re coming from polite curiosity, although i do find it strange to be asked the question by complete and utter strangers on the street. Or the bus driver who yelled down an empty bus to ask if I was greek…?

      From acquaintances, I rarely mind.

      That being said, I’m french-canadienne, which means “northern european with a handful of native american thrown in”. I’ve got olive skin and dark eyes so when I dye my hair black I get all sorts. Greek, brazilian, persian, spanish (I actually had a spanish guy start speaking spanish to me in a grocery store…), native american, mexican (funnily enough my little brother looks just like me, was born in Mexico, but nope, still french-canadien), etc, etc…
      Basically any ethnicity that has olive to brownish skin tone (depending on my tan) and dark features.
      maybe I would mind more if I didn’t find it so funny?

  13. My kids can absolutely be counted in the beige category. My maternal grandparents are from a holler in West Virginia and my paternal grandparents are from Portugal (and lived in Brazil most of their lives). My husband’s maternal family’s last name was LONGACRE, but they are Spanish/Chicano (he would correct me and say they are New Mexican!) His paternal family is Hispanic.

    I have never had a problem with people wanting to know the background of our family; I am fascinated by the different cultural backgrounds people are from, but that isn’t necessarily about race. I do get VERY bothered when my mother in law says of our babies “They look very white, no?” as if that were some great disappointment to her. Maybe I am a horribly rude person, because I do ask people where their families are from, because I am genuinely interested in their background, not because I want to fit them in a “box”.

    I do also get upset about people’s assumptions and the implications of “is this child REALLY YOURS”. I look young and often had older ladies tell me that my kids couldn’t possibly be mine because I was too young. What does it mean for a kid to be REALLY YOURS in this day and age of adoptions, step-parenting, guardianship, etc.?

  14. I once had an older gentleman in the grocery store ask me if my husband was a foreign exchange student staying with me! He’s Korean American and I’m European American. I’m excited to see what our daughter will look like!

    • My fiance’s cousin is super pale with red hair and has a very small frame. Her husband is jet black with a huge frame (he was a construction worker when he still lived in Ghana). We were so excited when she was pregnant, and their baby is ADORABLE.

      I look a lot like my fiance, and while I’m sure we’ll still be excited to see what our baby looks like when I’m pregnant, I don’t think it will be as much of a guessing game. 🙂

  15. Just be glad most of you guys aren’t living in Japan. The way “half” children are treated here is just shameful. I get really angry when I hear the way the teachers and students will talk about other children who are not full-blooded Japanese.

  16. Our kids look like their scandanavian ancestry, but being a young mum I get asked if they are really mine as they look like little female versions of their daddy.
    My sister and I have the same (caucasian) parents but look like opposites. I’m short, fine-boned, slim, porcelain-skinned with blue eyes and coppery-blonde hair. She’s tall, with solid bones, wide hips, wide shoulders, olive/light cocoa skin, gorgeous brown eyes and lovely mid-brown hair with other random natural colours mixed in. She keeps getting asked which mob (Aboriginal people group) she belongs to, and people don’t believe that we are actually sisters.

  17. I grew up in a time and place when I was generally the only biracial kid in the classroom. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to correct people in either pronouncing or spelling my name or had to stand up and say that it was my name since the other Asian girl in my classes generally had American names like Grace or Nina. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told I can’t be in the Asian group because I’m not Asian enough or that I wouldn’t understand racism since I looked so white or been told by a white person that I can’t speak about my experience of being from a different culture because I look too white. Or how many times I’ve had racial slurs yelled at me out a car window. Yet, I’m still pretty excited that my kid is going to grow up in a time a place that she will be more accepted and appreciated for her uniqueness than I was. At the same time, I learned a lot from being on the outside looking in and I wouldn’t exchange the knowledge I’ve gotten from that perspective. Yes, it is hurtful and rude when people asks “What are you” or assume you are the hired help or not related in any way, but when you respond back rudely you shut down any dialog or ability to teach them that there is more to the world than they’ve ever experienced. They are asking based on their experience of the world and I generally feel bad for people who live in such a sad, colorless world that the only thing they’ve ever seen is kids who look like carbon copies of their parents. I’ve made quite a few friends having conversations with people who have come up and asked me what most would consider rude questions about my race/ethnicity. I now see those types of rude questions as an opportunity… You can either shut-down that person and add to their biases and dislike of what is not-them or you can see them as meaning well with a small case of foot-in-the-mouth disease. It doesn’t make it any less hurtful for you, but maybe the next time they meet someone different they will treat them better and by example teach their kids something better and eventually that comes back to all of us who are different from what is considered the norm.

  18. My sister and I are mixed race and share our father’s coloring, but he wasn’t around much when we were growing up. People would see us with our mom and assume we were adopted. One time a friend of our mom’s asked if we were “natural sisters.” Mom said we were. Her friend replied, “That’s so neat that you were able to adopt them together!” I thought (and still think) it was hilarious.

  19. I am European-American and my son’s father is Filipino-American. My son’s facial features are placed almost identically to mine, but he looks decidedly Filipino. I love the questioning stares that my son and I get, because I feel like we’re opening people’s eyes to what love looks like.

  20. I am white as white comes, from a looooooong line of whitey-white mcwhitersons. My brother, cousins and I look like we stepped out of Nazi propaganda posters. (We’re not German at all, or at least in any significant proportion; I’m a DAR, and we’re just a huge mix of European ancestry, with the biggest contributors Ireland and Hungary.) My fiancé, however, is Puerto Rican; his mother has very Spanish looks and very light skin, while his father is mostly Taino and verrrrry dark. Where we live in the US, he’s considered simply Puerto Rican, but his relatives in Puerto Rico consider him mixed race. Our parents love us as a couple, but our grandparents, on BOTH sides, have expressed their displeasure at what color our children will be. Apparently neither side wants muddy grandkids?
    It really seems only his family perceives him as being markedly hispanic, though; he’s relatively light-skinned, and is often mistaken for Greek, Italian, Egyptian, or just a general “middle eastern.” He considers himself Caucasian, because technically, he is.
    One of the reasons I’m excited to have children with him is to find out how our mix of colors will balance out in their features: blonde hair vs. black hair, blue eyes vs. brown, my mother’s very slightly Asian looks or his father’s Native looks… I’m positive they will be BEAUTIFUL, in a way I wouldn’t be so sure if their father was just as Whitey McWhiterson as me.

    On a side note, I had a professor once who was British, of Scotch extraction, and whose wife was Puerto Rican. He told me about filling out the census for his daughters: Ethnicity, Hispanic/Latino;
    Race, Celtic. (“I’m not white, I’m blue, dammit. I’m a Celt. I’m not the same as a Frenchman… those fuckers.”)

  21. My mom get’s the comment “those are your kids? They’re so TALL!” all the time. My mom is Vietnamese Chinese (Hakka Chinese/Chinese born in Vietnam), and my father is Dutch. Me and my two brothers are all tall, while my mother is a petite 5’3.

    We’re also a range of skin tones. My brother has very white fine Chinese skin, my brother looks as though he could be Filipino he’s so dark, and i’m in the middle, with classic yellow undertone Asian skin. We all take after our mother, with dark eyes and hair.

    We’re used to the stares and the comments by now, especially when we’re in an Asian market or place, and we speak in Cantonese. Seems like nobody told the traditional Chinese people that gwai louh (white devil) kids could speak Cantonese!

    My grandma also hated that my mom married a Dutch man. In Vietnam, where she is originally from, mixed race children are seen as unclean, and a unwelcome reminder of the war. During the Vietnam war, American GI’s often had sex with the Vietnamese locals, and when the war was over, the women were stuck raising the kids alone. So when my mom told my grandma that she was going to be marrying a Dutch guy, she HATED the idea. She’s gotten used to it now, but at the time, she was extremely against it.

    When I was growing up, I often felt like I didn’t belong with any group. Was I Dutch or Chinese? Now that i’m older, I identify as Chinese, but I also acknowledge my Dutch ancestry. I was raised Chinese, with the Chinese traditions and festivals. When I have kids, I know that they’re going to be a beautiful mix of my cultures and whoever I marry.

    Mixed children are more common nowadays, especially those of Chinese or Vietnamese descent. Its a huge change for me, since I knew NO mixed kids when I was growing up. Slowly, we’re challenging the stereotype that mixed kids are the product of a HEALTHY relationship, not one where the father loved and left.

    I’m PROUD of who I am, and i’m going to teach my kids to be proud also!

  22. Come to Hawaii! All you “mixed-breeds” will blend right in! Being raised here I didn’t know that there is something “strange” about being mixed until I went away to college in the mainland. In grade school and high school the vast majority of kids are mixed… two, three, four different ethnicities. We were proud of our mixes and could tell you what fraction we are of each one. Myself, half each of Japanese and Portuguese. That’s bland. I was jealous of the Chinese, Hawaiian, Japanese, Irish, Puerto Rican, German girl that could tell you her ingredients down to an eighth. That carries on till today. I can tell you that my girls are a quarter Mexican, three-eighths Japanese, and three-eighths Portuguese. People say, “well ya I guess she does sorta look like you in that picture”. I’m used to it…I “sorta” look like my mom too. Hapa people are beautiful!

    • I was waiting for someone from Hawaii to make this comment! Thank you! I find it amusing that in Hawaii you are asked all the time “what you are” yet on the mainland its considered odd. I guess the aloha spirit just makes us super proud of our mixed heritage!

  23. I’m another white mutt who had a baby with an Asian man. Our baby is 50% Viet and 50% a whole lotta other stuff (some of it includes American Indian).

    When I look at her, I see that she looks a lot more Asian than white. When Peter looks at her, he sees that she looks more white than Asian. HA!

    He’s somewhat tan all year round, and I’m almost see through I’m so pale. Our daughter is pale, but with distinct yellow undertones. I think she has beautiful skin, but sometimes when I hold her next to me, she looks like she came from someone else.

    She happens to have my hair, dark brown and fine, his eyes though bigger. My chin, maybe his cheekbones. Her uncles long skinny fingers, her Aunts teeny tiny bone structure, her Grandfather’s curls. Who knows what she’ll look like when she gets older.

    She’s beautiful, as most mixed kids are…but the looks we get when we’re out alone. Like…we’re you adopt that kinda Asian looking baby from?

    • To add to this, even though both of my parents are white, I don’t look like either. I guess it’s just easier to imagine similarities when they’re of the same race.

  24. My sister and I have both of the same parents, but were never paired together. She’s taller, blonde, and thin with blue eyes and fair skin. I’m just a shade darker, short, dark brown hair and eyes and built like a brick shithouse. Kids thought we just rode the same bus in school. My own daughter from a previous marriage looks very much like me, but with blonde hair and green eyes. Someone actually asked me how she could have blonde hair when my new husband (with whom I am pregnant with #2) is such a dark-colored Italian. It felt like she was calling me out on some sort of infidelity! But, yes, as a celt-native american mix, I’ve gotten plenty of questions, though I look plenty white to most. When I worked in a sushi restaurant, I was asian. When I tell people my name is arabic, I’m middle eastern. When I speak spanish in Dallas, I’m mexican!

    • OOHH good point! I look NOTHING like my brother. I’m short pale blue eyes, he’s tall tan brown eyes. When we used to go out together, everyone thought I was there with my bf….not my brother! ACK.

        • heh, my mom had me when she was 18 and we have been mistaken for sisters before. That has definitely led to some awkward conversations with tactless men before…

    • We do not have a mixed race family, but my husband and I are on different ends of the spectrum when it comes to our complexions. I have dark hair, dark eyes, and darker skin. In fact, in school I had classmates tell me that I did so well in Spanish class because I am Hispanic, but I am not Hispanic at all. My husband is blonde, with blue eyes, and fair skin. WE have three girls. Our oldest has medium colored hair with big brown eyes and a darker complexion. Our middle has greenish eyes, slightly lighter hair and complexion. The baby is blonde with big blue eyes and fair skin. When people see just our youngest and I together, they have a hard time believing she is mine. Of course, if you know my husband it makes sense. They do each have features that resemble both of us, but at first glance, the differences in the looks between my youngest and I can not go unnoticed.

  25. Wow – thanks for sharing all of your stories! Speaking of being mistaken for someone you’re not, while I (a little Asian girl) was vacationing in Mexico with a friend of East Indian descent, a local asked if we were sisters! Haha – we could not look any different!

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