38 – Sacramento, California, United States

In the beginning of the 20th century, my family moved out of China from the...

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Online: More than 6 months ago

Modified: More than 6 months ago

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About Him

Country of Origin:
United States
Sacramento, California, United States
5' 8" (173cm)
Body Type:
A few extra pounds
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Jehovah's Witness
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Just online friends; Friends; Open to possibilities
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Bachelors degree
Teacher / Professor
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In His Own Words

About Him

In the beginning of the 20th century, my family moved out of China from the province of Hubei. They stopped in Thailand, and then moved their way into India. Eventually my fathers family moved into Pakistan, when it became its own independent state. Because of my familys move into a foreign land, they would have to acculturate. Acculturation involves two different ethnic groups interacting with one another. Psychologist Teresa LaFromboise and her colleagues came up with several models of acculturation (Hall & Barongan, 2002, p.22). These models are assimilation, acculturation, fusion, alternation, and multicultural. According to these models, our family fit in the acculturation model. This model pertains to how a person knows about the dominant culture but always identifies him or herself a member of the minority culture (Hall & Barongan, p. 22). Similarly, my grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles never consider themselves Indian, but always Chinese. They have competence in the Indian culture, such as being able to read, write and talk in Indian language (Hindi). However, my grandparents would often discourage close relationships with Indians, and always reminded my parents, aunts and uncles that they were Chinese not Indian. In addition, my grandparents made sure that our Chinese language would not be forgotten, so they would force their children to speak Chinese at home. They also made sure that when my aunts and uncles did get married, they would only marry Chinese. Furthermore, this trend slightly began to change when my cousins and I were born.

I was born in Pakistan on July 19, 1983. My mom had moved from India to Pakistan to live with my dad. When I did visit my moms side of the family in India, I noticed that my moms family was very interdependent of each other. In Asian Pacific cultural values, interdependence is one of the main traits. Oftentimes, family unit in Asian Pacific families are valued over the individual (G.M. Kim-Ju, Personal Communication, November 12, 2004). This cultural value was reflected in my family. In India, three uncles, including my grandparents had lived together in one building. They had separate apartment units, but they would eat, watch television and do other recreational activities together. Moreover, my cousins and I kept the Asian Pacific trait of being interdependent, but we did not keep the same acculturation model as our parents did. According to the five different models, I fit in the alternation acculturation model (Hall & Barongan, p.22). I had bicultural competence. My parents never discouraged me about closely associating with Indians or Pakistanis. They often did inform me about my Chinese cultural heritage.

In 1990, my family and I moved to Florida. When my family settled in Florida, I was still taught to remember my Chinese cultural heritage. However, over time the acculturation model that I fit in had changed. I was no longer in the alternation model, but rather in the fusion model. The fusion model is a combination of cultures to form a new culture (Hall & Barongan, p. 22). I fused American, Chinese and Indian culture all together. Furthermore, even my language started to reflect the fusion. I started mixing English and Hindi into my Chinese, thus creating a Creole language at home. This realization of me fitting into the fusion model only resulted when I started reflecting back on my experience and what I learned in Multicultural Psychology. My taste in entertainment had also changed. Instead of me just watching Indian movies, my family and I started watching American movies. We became accustomed to watching American movies, and over a period of time, we began to watch less Indian movies. Before long, I did not even think about my ethnicity and just began to associate closely with my fellow classmates.

As I grew older in the United States, I also learned the importance of socioeconomic status (SES). Most of my families here disregarded us because of our low SES. When we came to this country, my parents did not have much. They had to work very hard in order to support our family. Because of our low SES, we also lacked privilege. Privilege is defined the right, advantage, or favor held by a certain individual, group, or class, and withheld from certain others or all others (Kim-Ju, October 10, 2004). However, I noticed a change in my extended family living in the U.S. when our SES started increasing. We finally achieved the middle class privilege and that made us more visible to our extended family (Kim-Ju, October 10, 2004). Despite us being more visible to our extended family, we still preferred to distance ourselves from them because of how they treated us. Thus, the cultural value of interdependence in our family began to change. No longer did we have close relationships with our extended family. We remained interdependent with our immediate family, but not so much with our extended family.

Eventually, my family had decided to move to California. In 1999, we left Florida and came to California. We stayed with my cousins house for about a year. While I started attending high school in California, I noticed that unlike my high school in Florida, this high school had racial cliques. The Asians would be with Asians, whites with whites, and etc. I came to a realization, that before coming to California I had a race less persona. In Tajfels social identity theory, ethnic minority group members eventually develop a race less persona, which leads to psychological problems (Kim-Ju, October 22, 2004). I personally do not believe that because of my race less persona I had negative psychological effects. However, this experience did make me reevaluate my ethnicity, that there was a difference in being Chinese and being Euro-American. Before, this experience, I believed that race did not matter. My friends had come from various backgrounds. My friends have been blacks, whites and Hispanics. Yet, when I did come to California I knew that being a certain race had a distinction in American Society. In addition, this race less persona died off when I came into frequent contact with my race. In Florida, I had never seen more than 100 Asians at once. My contact with fellow Asian Pacific Americans had been very limited. The first time I did come into contact with a large group of Asians was when I visited California in 1998. I still remember the words I said when I first saw them, Man, they all look alike! Yet, as I spent more years in California and frequent contact with Asians, I began to notice differences in visual characteristics between Japanese, Chinese, Korean and other Asian groups.

As I continued on into high school in California, I noticed that I was deprived of the privilege I once had in Florida. I was considered the outsider. I felt this lack of privilege when I joined the debate team in my high school. In Florida, I had a strong bond with my fellow debaters, but over here it was different. I had to earn my privilege and be accepted in this new debate team. Because of this lack of privilege I started to become more silent, had more hesitation, and self doubt (Kim-Ju, October 18, 2004). In my debate team in Florida, I would often challenge, question or interrupt. However, because of my lack of privilege my confidence had dropped tremendously. This lack of privilege did not only pertain to my debate team, but throughout the school. Most of the students at my high school had remained in the school district all their lives. Thus they knew their classmates from grade school. However, I had only recently moved to this high school, so I had to make new acquaintances.

This lack of privilege continued on to my College career. Yet, I slowly gained the social privilege in college. I began to make new friends. This resulted in a gain in confidence. I did not hesitate and self-doubt as much. I became myself again as how I was in Florida. Eventually when I took Multicultural Psychology I began to reflect my life experiences and how it related to Multicultural Psychology. At times I believed that Multicultural Psychology did open some issues that I prefer not to talk about. Yet, I believed that experience was an enlightening experience. My life in a multicultural psychological perspective has shown me that I had gone through many changes in privilege, in acculturation, and in social identity.

About His Ideal Match

A strong spiritual person who\'s friendly. After all everyone should be friendly in this site. I don't know what else to write, but it seems that I should write 2 lines, so this is really just space filler.

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