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Parenting Biracial Children: 6 Tips from Moms Who’ve Been There

biracial couples

My parents were concerned about my future when I brought home a non-Hispanic boyfriend, who soon became my fiancé and now my amazing husband. Their concern? You don’t need to complicate marriage more by marrying someone who is not of our culture.

I’ve been married 10 years and his culture and my culture have yet to be a groundbreaking problem. We have your typical marriage problems, like:

Why didn’t you call if you were coming home late?

Could you please listen to how I’m feeling and not get defensive?

Or the classic “love languages” misunderstanding: He thought I wanted a gift, when all I really wanted was his words of affirmation.

Our cultural differences have not been what we end up arguing about.

But parenting in an interracial marriage?  Not a single soul mentioned or broached the challenges and beauties of our future biracial children. Kristen Canales from Toddling the the Fast Lane explains it like this: “You might surprise yourself. You may think that as a couple you’ve got all the cultural kinks worked out, but raising kids is a whole new ball game. You might have assumptions or prejudices who didn’t even realize. Compromise is king.”

While parenting my biracial children is one of the most precious gifts God has given me, it doesn’t come easily. Any parent will tell you that raising inquisitive minds, creative souls, and giving hearts is a challenge in itself, so I hope these tips from mom bloggers who have gone from an interracial couple to parenting biracial children will help you out!

interracial marriages

1. Don’t feel like you have to choose a race or culture for your child

But if they do choose, this is what Toddling in the Fast Lane’s blog advises: “They might prefer or identify more with one culture or the other. It can be discouraging and sometimes even lonely if you’re the parent left out or if they don’t love your spouse’s culture the way you do. Roll with it. Forcing language or culture on your kids will almost for sure backfire.”

multicultural family

2. Strengthen bonds through family traditions

“Family traditions are a way to strengthen family bonds, teach our children our family’s values, and give our kids a sense of identity and security within our family. Celebrate cultural traditions from both sides of the family — and make up new rituals (like Friday movie/pizza night) and strengthen your family bond.”

— Becky from Kid World Citizen

multicultural family 1

3. Share their cultural roots with them

“Teach your children to be proud of all the cultures they are part of.”

— Rita from Multilingual Parenting

4. Don’t play the blame game

“Don’t blame everything on cultural differences. For example, it could be differences in character, gender, age, etc. that lead to potential problems, or a temporarily difficult situation, not necessarily culture.”

— Olga from European Mama

multicultural family 3

5. Remember that every family is unique

“Know it’s okay to start your own traditions and to combine things from both parents’ culture/race. Every family is unique. Finding ways to embrace that with your children is special.”

— Jaime from Frogs, Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

6. Make some decisions in advance

“If your spouse’s religion is different, you might be faced with a hard decision to make: Deciding what religion your child will follow and what holidays they will celebrate.”

— Galina from Raising a Trilingual Child

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