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One thing I took away, but have yet to fully unpack, from my recent conversation with my mom is that I fear I may have heightened stereotypes, too.

Thirteen years of dating boys outside my race and it took sitting down to write this essay to have the first, real conversation with my parents about interracial dating.

I used to say I didn't have a type, but if we go off consistency, I do.

Both minorities have been reported to confront more than cooperate in certain areas; reports have pinpointed competition for jobs as a factor.

What's crazy to me is that both groups, Mexicans and blacks, have been marginalized historically, and dealt with levels of oppression by systems, yet tension is between individuals.

As far as dating, I've encountered men who've thought of me as the Mexican woman that is there only to serve, speaks Spanish in bed, or has a connect to an inner drug cartel member.

And those misconceptions were directed at me from men of all shades.And, really, it roots deeper than my parents, my grandparents, and their parents before them.Racial tension between Mexicans and blacks, especially on the west coast and in some parts of the south, is tied to an ugly history.I can't pinpoint physical features or characteristics of black men because that's not only wrong, it's just not the entire case. Have I come across one that's caught my attention? I have strong Mexican men in my life, too—my father and my two brothers—that I hold close, respect, and admire.What I'm attracted to can be found in men of all races: strong arms (sense of protection), a great smile, nice build (healthy), ambitious, passionate, a sense of humor—a touch of sarcasm helps—and a kind heart. My brothers never seemed to have an opinion as to the type of men I dated, and were only concerned with how each guy treated me. My dad has always been a quiet man, and his only insertion in conversations about my dating life: "Are you happy, ?"You're going to end up pregnant before you're married," she once said. But my grandfather—my mother's father—wasn't too fond of my dad.

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