Hispanic and I only speak English

marloMarlo Torres,
Riverside, CA.

I am Puerto Rican and I have always grown up with the question of; You’re Hispanic, why don’t you speak Spanish? At first it was always something that I just laughed off and my usual response was I don’t know or my parents never taught me. As I grew older and even now, it’s a question that bothers me. I would mostly be asked that question at work. I think what bothers me the most about that question is the look people give me when they ask that question, as if I am a disgrace to my culture because I do not speak Spanish. I remember I used to get angry and ask my Mother why she never taught any of her five children Spanish. I didn’t understand at first because both my parents spoke Spanish very well, however as I got older I began to understand the struggles my mom went through as a single parent raising five children and I knew it was not an easy task for her. I hope that in the future as our country continues to develop more diversity and more understanding of different races and cultures, we can also learn to understand that there are many Hispanic cultures that do not speak Spanish.


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