I watch him walking down the halls with his new girlfriend. I am filled with the uncontrollable anger, sadness, and jealousy. Yet, with all those emotions, there is still one more. It is lingering in my head, in my brain , the curiosity of why he ended our relationship.
We used to be a solid couple. We spent all our time together, laughing, singing, going places. We were "always and forever," as he had put it. That is, until this year. He broke up with me and began dating another girl. She was pretty, an average student, on the soccer team, and most hurtful of all, white.
I go to a mostly white high school. There are many ethnic kids who go here too and I am one of them.
Every time I pass my reflection in the mirror I stop and see two dark eyes, a flat nose, and a mass of black hair that frames my melon-shaped Chinese face. I ask myself, "Will I fit in? Will people overlook your outer-self and realize what a kind, considerate, cultured person is hidden beneath the color of your skin?" I reassure myself and say, "There is no reason for people not to like you, unless they are prejudiced, which is terrible and wrong."
There is not too much prejudice in my school. I was not aware that in other schools (and towns) it still existed. I had not been teased and made fun of for years, but one day when I was walking down the street in another town, a group of younger girls called out hateful names which hurt me badly. I did not say anything to them, being shy and self-conscious, and walked away, angered by their ignorance. It felt strange when they said those words. Since it had not happened for such a long time, I was not used to it. If the same thing had happened a few years back, I would have burst out crying, but now the shock, the realization that some people still felt that way, left me speechless.
So when my boyfriend broke up with me (after that incident had occurred), I could not help thinking that he broke up because of my race. I still think that now. He is white and it mattered to me to have a "white" boy like me. Maybe he was ashamed to be seen with me, or maybe our love was just not meant to be. I am not a confident or outgoing person. Right now I feel as if no one will ever love me again. I have so many doubts about why we broke up that will probably never be answered. I don't think that I'll ever be comfortable knowing I am different and that there are people that will not accept me. n
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.