So for those newbies to the term “AMBW,” it’s the acronym that stands for Asian Men and Black Women. I myself am an African-American woman (though my family does have some mixed race ancestry, as is common in the United States), and I have dated men of various ethnic backgrounds and have recently taken an interest in AMBW happenings. So a few months ago (back in October), I was pleasantly surprised to come across several groups promoting and supporting AMBW couples on FaceBook, including http://www.facebook.com/ambwl, http://www.facebook.com/ambwpersuasion, http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/124324620997188/304501132979535/?notif_t=group_activity, and http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/120565204691002/335280723219448/?notif_t=group_activity.
Yet at the same time, I was little surprised too. I’m definitely a healthy relationships’ advocate, so I’m of the firm mindset that there are no boundaries when it comes to love. We should all love, date, marry and/or procreate with whomever we choose, regardless of color, race, nationality, etc. etc. We’re all human, after all. Sadly, even in the twenty-first century, there are still a myriad of people who are having a difficult time accepting the notions of interracial relationships and biracial/multiracial children. Everyone seems to have different opinions on the topic of AMBW specifically, so we’ll cover a few of those points of view in just a few seconds.
First, I should point out a bit about my own worldview and a couple of quick things about my life experiences that have shaped my opinions too. I live in Southern California, so the diversity here makes it difficult to remember that not everyone is surrounded by such a metropolitan environment, or such differing perspectives. I see couples where each partner is of differing races frequently in my native LA. Yet as I recently began to delve more and more into the Happa (people mixed with Asian ancestry), Blasian (Black and Asian), and AMBW community topics online, I had mixed feelings about what I found.
On the one hand, there were the people who want to create a united front between Black women and Asian men. The most often sited reason was because if the media and our current social climate is constantly pushing Asian women and Black men as idealized sex objects, while portraying Asian men as brainy nerds and stereotyping Black women as angry and otherwise attitude having, we should connect. That way, each of the outlier groups could support each other through romantic involvements, friendships and neutral common ground shared both in cyber space as well as in real life.
On the other hand, there were people who negated the possibility that we all needed to come together as a sort of coalition. In fact, as often pointed out in Ranier’s blog (ranierm.wordpress.com), AMBW is not, or shouldn’t be some sort of movement. We should all just date who we want to. Color just happens to be part of the physical characteristics a person is born with. It doesn’t necessarily define who he or she is. So Black women shouldn’t really consider dating a man just because he is Asian (as some of the anime fan girls online seem to have an affinity for doing), or vice versa. Since after all, as TK the Korean likes to point out (http://askakorean.blogspot.com/) we’re all men and women first and foremost, so find someone you like and go from there.
It’s interesting to me too that there are so many Asian men and Black women that are attracted to each other and yet, don’t seem to be able to find each other so they can connect socially. This is poignantly and sometimes comically discussed by Jenna Rose and icysparks2007 is often chiming in and pointing out on Youtube (http://www.youtube.com/user/JennaCLuv/videos and http://www.youtube.com/my_subscriptions?feature=mhee&s=PMFThPOtobws4XmwBnhOgTm9IUKCmiIdlzjox0Mtrm4 respectively).
Though, as TK also points out, there can be family acceptance issues with AMBW couples too. I can attest that I have at times seen parents giving the disapproving “look” or glare, making rude comments or flat out disowning their children for dating or marrying outside of their own race. Which is ironic to me, because really, what difference does it make? Being a parent now myself, I can honestly say that at the end of the day, as long as my son chooses someone who he is well matched with (equally yoked, as the Bible would say), where there is mutual respect, love, and they treat one another well, who cares if his future significant other is purple?
I think people sometimes get so caught up in archaic ideologies and not really understanding who they, or other people are as individuals because of what they have been taught. It’s easy to forget the basic fundamentals and what’s really important about human connections. No, the world is not colorblind and yes, different cultures in the same relationship can impact it, at times negatively, because upbringing affects people’s worldviews. However, if two people can come together to work things out, between the two of them, and have a successful relationship, at the end of the day, it only matters what the two of them think about seeing each other.
So after checking out so many varying opinions on AMBW, and even having dated several Asian men myself along the way, I’ve stuck with my original thoughts on the matter. Date whoever you want! Focus on being happy and in a healthy relationship. Don’t let other people’s prejudice determine the path you choose for your life, because the decision is ultimately yours. So own it proudly.
If you want to check out more of my random musings, check me out at http://cecemonet.com/ or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to drop me a line and let me know your thoughts on AMBW, or any other interracial relationship topics.
About the Author: CeCe Monét is a California native, residing in her hometown in the South Bay Los Angeles metro area. She loves the synergy between men and women which she captures in her contemporary romantic stories as well as poetry. She also has an affinity for the unusual including the paranormal and urban fantasy genres. Much of her writing focuses on the true essence of human nature via the choices people make when faced with unexpected circumstances as well as mixed cultures, biracial, interracial/multiracial and race relations matters.
“My family has some mixed race ancestry, so I think my background has influenced me to always look at race-related identity issues and how these factors can impact romantic involvements. Besides, I’m a sociologist, so I’m always trying to better understand people and culture and how society relates to human interactions and individual worldviews.”