Reason 6. I do not want to be your new best friend. Ever.
Yes, I do know that you heard from an adoption professional that if there’s one person of color within a square mile of your house, you had better make friends with that person. Except you need to look a little harder, because it’s probably not going to be me.
Let’s face it, there’s something a little creepy about somebody telling you that they’d like to be your friend so that you can be a role model for their kid or because they want to have more friends of color. That is, more than zero.
A couple of times I’ve been asked by adoptive parents, “How DOES one make friends with people of color?” Beats the hell out of me. We’re so weird and alien that normal friendship overtures won’t work. Here are a couple of openers you could try:
Hey, what are you?
I just loooove your culture! It’s so interesting!
I love [select one or more of the following, bonus points if the ethnicities do not match: Amy Tan,* curry, anime, dim sum, fufu, sushi, tacos, Dinesh D’Souza].
I used to have a really good friend who was from [insert country here].
And if worse comes to worse, you could always try a rental service.
*I got the Amy Tan type of POC groupie recently, who was sorely disappointed to find out that I don’t like Amy Tan. At all.