They only see the Asian half.

395550_3132095985449_808346539_nKatelyn Tsukada
Northampton, MA

My mother is of Irish and Italian heritage; my father of Japanese descent. Both of my parents were born in the United States as were their parents before them. Both consider themselves to be American as documented by their passports, drivers licenses and birth certificates. My mother and father speak English has their first and only language. And the American child they created and raised together? Well she constantly gets asked where she is “really” from because New York State is never the correct answer.

I learned to identify myself as Asian-American because that is how others categorized me. My classmates assumed Asian was the reason I got good grades. Asian was the reason I liked seafood and tanned like an islander. And Asian was the reason my grandmother was made to live in an internment camp directly following the attack on Pearl Harbor. My history. Asian history. The rich Irish-Italian culture of my mother’s family never stood a chance.

Keep the conversation going - comment and discuss with your thoughts

  • LR

    It’s because the father is Asian. Children with a White mother and Asian father are still Asian rather than those with White fathers and Asian mothers.

  • barry irving

    …Your mothers history is not apparent in your look. so it’s your job to educate people id you choose…you create the balance that others do not see. I went to Syracuse University. There are lots of Asians there who look like you and many who are very white skinned, like no possibility of a tan. You can tell that they have a good deal of European blood, but until they speak, you never know if they American or Asian born.


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