I’ve only been in two relationships: one ex, one current. My ex was Hmong, and my current boyfriend is Portuguese. My romantic experiences may have played a small role in my decision to date outside of my race, however many other factors played into this as well. I am not here to diss on the Hmong community or Hmong men or make a massive generalization; I am merely giving my personal, subjective view on my own outlook of my relationships and my future.
The reason why I decided to date outside of my race is because of the expectations that are put onto Hmong women as daughters and daughters-in-law. I know that in this day and age, there are some Hmong families who have modernized and do not play in part to the Hmong patriarchal ways. Nonetheless, there are still many, many Hmong families out there who: expect women to cook and clean; expect women to be submissive; expect women to not talk back; expect women to birth an abundance of boys; etc. That is not what I want to put myself through. However, there are also other reasons why I do not want to put a good Hmong man through a relationship with me. But for me, in general, I don’t want to be with a Hmong man just for the reason that I should keep my bloodline pure Hmong. I don’t want to be with a Hmong man just to make my parents and relatives happy. I don’t want to be with a Hmong man and have all of these negative expectations of him, because he deserves more than my negative thoughts and expectations; he deserves someone who will love him for who he is and what he has to offer. He deserves someone who is more easy-going and understanding of the Hmong community and who isn’t so critical of every little aspect like I am. So if you haven’t noticed already, what I am trying to say is that I do not want to date a Hmong man at the moment because I don’t want to string him along and play with his emotions while harboring negative expectations or feelings for the little things about him that is supposed to be overlooked or still loved. I don’t want to put a Hmong man through a relationship where his partner will only be thinking negative things, all due to her exposure since young and current, abstract thought processes. I am saying these things from experience and not just out of pure whim. Call me sexist or racists or a hoe or whatever comes to your mind, but this is me. I am not going to hold back my opinion – and as I said, OPINION, not facts, because this is my subjective view.
When I think about it, I think my feelings about Hmong men in part has to do with the way that I was raised. Just the fact that I didn’t have a voice in my own family, that I was always subjected to others, I could never talk back, I could never speak my mind, I couldn’t stand up for myself, I was expected to cook and clean while my brothers got to sit back and relax, I got punished for being academically involved at school, or I got in trouble for not washing my brothers’ dishes – just so many things that I can name. My parents basically instilled this, this sense of insecurity and fear into me of Hmong men and the Hmong community. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my Hmong identity and I am still infatuated with Hmong men and would love to get their attention. However, if I were to ever try and get into another relationship with a Hmong man at the moment, I think I would just be too critical of him. And I don’t want that. I don’t want to put any Hmong man through my own insecurities and negative feelings of men from the Hmong community. They deserve someone who will not mind their little quirks and love them wholly, whereas I basically feel like I have been conditioned to fear and/or dislike the little quirks.
I know there are many, MANY Hmong men who are well cultivated and respectful of women. I know that they exist. And I know that patriarchy runs in all cultures and communities. However at the moment, I am ok with where I am at and how I am feeling. I am grateful to have had the experience with my ex, and I am happy for those who have healthy and loving (Hmong) relationships. Will I ever date another Hmong guy again? Who knows, I might someday; I don’t know what the future holds for me. But for now, I am in my own healthy and happy relationship, and I couldn’t ask for more.