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Old 09-24-2013, 02:01 PM
 
56 posts, read 96,167 times
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My husband and myself are looking to relocate in about 6 months or so.
One of the considerations he brought up last night is racism.
As much as I don't like talking about this subject matter, it's reality so here goes.

We are an interracial couple. We have moved around in our state quite a bit and there hasn't been any verbal or physical racism except once in the area we live now. (very long unpleasant story).
However we have found that it's very quaint - and most of the people here are nice. Sometimes people will give their look of disapproval (as if it's their business), and some people don't care.

My husband mentioned that we don't know anything about the lifestyle there in Oregon or even Seattle....(even though we visited Seattle a few years ago and had nothing less than a great experience), but he brought up a good point.
Many people will defend their towns very quickly and say that everything is 'peachy'. This isn't always the case, although I realize not everyone is bad.

Can anyone tell me if they've had any experiences (especially interracial / bi-racial).
What areas seem to be more interracial / bi-racial friendly.

While we've heard so many 'good' things about Oregon / WA, We would hate to move and get into an ordeal. Any ideas on areas to avoid?
I really hate that I have to ask this question.
Thank you.
(also posted in Washington)

Last edited by FreeSpirit2219; 09-24-2013 at 02:10 PM.. Reason: addendum
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:21 PM
 
230 posts, read 565,864 times
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Hi,
Those are reasonable concerns. I'm not sure where you live now, as compared to OR/WA. I find that the Seattle area can be passive-aggressive racist, based on incidents in the area. And occasionally outwardly racist: Literally, this weekend, a bi-racial couple was assaulted in Seattle (this is a weird story.) The man and his gf got out of their car and some men in an apartment above began calling him slurs, then threw potted plants down on them and their car. It's in the media in Seattle today. In the small lovely town I've lived in up there recently, there have been incidents of slurs yelled out of car windows, and items being thrown at teens of color. And this is considered one of the most desirable towns here.

I think the key is to find a community where you can make friends, it won't be so bad. But there seems to be a very big segregation up in the Pacific Northwest, and a history of racism overall. I've never lived in a more racist place (but I'm from California, where I've never witnessed it at all.)

For Oregon, if you stay in the areas like Eugene or Corvallis, or parts of Portland, I'm sure it's not an issue. The hipster or hippie vibe is very open and accepting. But, like Seattle, the outlying areas and the history of these places are rooted in a hardcore, log jammer, mentality. You would not feel comfortable in many small towns outside of the cities in Oregon.

I guess the secret is to find an area that feels comfortable, and accepting, if you really want to move up to the PNW. If I had to choose, I'd choose Portland or Eugene, because it seems more accepting, and if someone has a problem with you, they're more likely to let you know, rather than be passive aggressive about it (Seattle specialty.) I think you'd feel more welcome in Portland.

Are you fully aware of life in the PNW? Have you been there for long visits during the October-May wet season? There is literally only 90 days of sunshine each year. A large number of transplants burnout within a year or two because of it. So be sure to factor the climate in. It depends on where you're from. So you'll really want to be realistic about that, as you make your plans.

Hope this helps. I truly wanted to be honest, and not "yay, where I live is great!!"
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Old 09-26-2013, 12:20 AM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,697 posts, read 25,287,173 times
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That's always a tough question to answer because wherever you go, there could be problems. You will often see bi-racial couples in Portland so it is not uncommon but whether or not other people give them a bad time is something really that only they can answer. I can think of about four bi-racial couples I have known, former co-workers, who have lived here in Portland for a long time. So Portland might be a consideration for you. Or the surrounding suburbs. I couldn't speak for the rural areas because I don't know about them.
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Old 09-26-2013, 02:14 PM
 
56 posts, read 96,167 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minervah View Post
That's always a tough question to answer because wherever you go, there could be problems. You will often see bi-racial couples in Portland so it is not uncommon but whether or not other people give them a bad time is something really that only they can answer. I can think of about four bi-racial couples I have known, former co-workers, who have lived here in Portland for a long time. So Portland might be a consideration for you. Or the surrounding suburbs. I couldn't speak for the rural areas because I don't know about them.
You made a good point. Thank you for your kindness and honesty.
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Old 09-26-2013, 03:04 PM
 
Location: Portlandish, OR
921 posts, read 1,644,041 times
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I live in a small-ish town on the edges of rural. I know two bi-racial couples (living here) personally. I agree with Minervah that only those people could really answer your question; you could live in the most accepting place in the whole world and one jerkface who's there on vacation might be the one to create a problem.

We are not an interracial couple but we also looked at moving to Seattle and decided that we like Oregon better because we like the slower pace and lower COL.
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