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Is Interracial Dating a Mental Disorder?

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From the U.S. I am a white woman in a southern state who has dated several black men in the last few years, as well as a couple of white men. Some of my family and friends have expressed concern that I’m dating “too many” black men and that they are worried it means I have an underlying mental disorder that is compelling me to date outside my race. The word “fetish” has been thrown around. I was absolutely shocked that they felt this way; I’ve never considered my interest in these men to be a fetish, as I was genuinely interested in them as people and was not dating them just because they were black.
Is there any validity to what they are saying? I don’t feel like I’ve done anything wrong, but I am facing a lot of scrutiny and criticism for my dating choices.
Thanks for your help!

Is Interracial Dating a Mental Disorder?

Answered by on -


No. There is absolutely no validity to what these people are saying. Their comments reflect an underlying racism in them — not something wrong with you.

It’s difficult to ignore comments from people we care about, but please don’t let their criticism get to you. Hopefully our culture will some day evolve to the point where everyone will respect cultural and racial differences and will not see them as barriers to love.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Is Interracial Dating a Mental Disorder?

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). Is Interracial Dating a Mental Disorder?. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 20, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.