I was reading an article about a young boy who tried to take his own life. His father an American (white) had abandoned him and is mother leaving them in Asia. Since he was half white and half Vietnamese he was treated as a second class citizen, ridiculed and even beat because he was not “pure.” Like most Amerasians he ended up having an identity crises and this eventually lead to his suicide attempt. People can cruel and I know how this young man feel’s for the most part as I have experienced it.
So reading that article brought back memories and feelings and as a result I wrote the following;
I am a second generation Filipino American. OR am I ?, I am a first generation multi-cultural Amerasian. OR am I? I am a half-breed who by some have been marked without a culture, a sense of belonging. A being who has, at times, been rejected or marked as less than “something” by both cultures to which I am part of.
As I searched in my younger years for where I belong, I have been called me a “nigger” by white Americans, a “half-breed”, a “mutt”, a “white boy” by Filipinos–almost a nothing. But the worst were the hushed whispers of the elders on both sides Filipino and White, “the poor poor child.” You can’t imagine the pain you will feel as a child. You can’t imagine what it feels like to be almost-but-not-quite belonging to two cultures yet not fully accepted by both. A nagging question I confront–“Who am I, Where do I belong.” And I wonder “Why do you hate me for what I am?”
You grow up in a world accepted by few and only then after you have proven you are what you say you are–I am a Filipino. At least I am until the next time I am told I am not. And then the question comes again; “Who am I, Where do I belong” and the long past scars are opened anew.
[Thanks Cuber for the copy edit]