English | Nigerian
I identify as a straight male. My dad is English, and my mum is Nigerian but was raised in England. They met in London and I grew up in Brixton.
I identify as being mixed-race and from Brixton, the culture in Brixton is strong and has definitely influenced me, I probably know more about Caribbean culture than I do about west African, when I was growing up and wanted to identify with Black culture, Caribbean culture was all around me. It’s not always easy being mixed-race but I love it.
Growing up mixed-race for me never seemed unusual as my school was in Brixton and It was very mixed, I definitely knew I was mixed race quite young as I’m very light skinned and have blonde hair which was even blonder when I was younger, if I was walking with my mum people would always stare at us trying to work out if I was her son. I don’t think I experienced racism until secondary school. I knew what it was, but you only start to realise the effects it has on society as you get older. I have experienced racism but I’m aware of my light skin privilege definitely!
Although in all my experiences with the police (and there are a lot when you are a young, mixed or Black man growing up in Brixton) they classify me as a Black man which always makes me laugh because I’m so light skinned. But I think this is where that whole idea comes from, that if you’re not White you’re Black. That is how a lot of people view it, so I identify with being Black or politically Black/African definitely. I don’t know any of my Nigerian family apart from one of my uncles, who along with my mum was raised by foster parents in Essex in the 70s, which must have been hard in many ways. I met my biological grandad who was a chief in Nigeria once before he passed away when I was about 21. I’ve never been to Nigeria, my mum has about 12 siblings over there, so I’ve always wanted to know more about that whole side of me. I will go and find out definitely.
My friendship circle consists of a lot of different cultures, most of us grew up in or around Brixton, the main thing that plays a part is that we are good people.
Race & culture do not play a role in relationships, I like learning about other cultures. If I am attracted to them and enjoy spending time with them it’s enough. I especially love someone who can make me laugh.
A bit positive for me is that being mixed-race helps bridge gaps between people, especially race & culture. A negative I’ve experienced a lot is people’s want to touch my hair!
If I was to be born again I would want to return as myself, no different!
I think mixed-race will get more normalised if the current trend continues and people continue moving around the world, but it’s hard to answer just a big question like this. I do think the future is positive though!