You may feel you don’t fit in but there is a place for everyone, as Gita Ramdharry’s experience shows
I was a homogeneous NHS baby, born to migrant nurses from Mauritius and Ireland in the 1970s. My father’s darker, South Asian skin tone has given me natural caramel colour that appears to leave me somewhat “ethnically ambiguous”. I am biracial, but I quickly realised as a child growing up in the UK that I was seen as Asian. But a trip to the family in Mauritius was confusing as my brother and I were “the white children”. Not white enough in one country and not brown enough in another.
As a teenager I became aware that not only did I have crushes on boys at school, but also some of the girls. At that time, ‘bisexual’ was not a word I’d heard and over the years when I was in a relationship with a woman, I was presumed lesbian. Now I am married to a man I am presumed straight. I am neither.
It seems there is a strong instinct for people to categorise one another.
Falling outside many of those categories was a source of angst for me for many years, but gradually I learned to feel comfortable on those fringes. I learned to value my unique perspectives and shared experiences with people from minoritised groups but perhaps with additional insights into the majority mindset. My position also affords me privilege and I am an activist and ally to people who will experience more oppression than me. I was on the outside looking in for many years, but I learned so much about myself and other people in that time.
The 2021 census gave me boxes to tick that were ME (yay!) but I’ve also had the joy of meeting others over the years who did not fit either. I’ve found my tribe of beautiful, rainbow misfits, discovering who they are and building strength from the feeling of not belonging. If you are on the outside looking in, come and find us in the CSP diversity networks. Your tribe is there for you too.
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