Smart, Loving Ways To Help Your Multicultural Relationship Work!

Interracial dating is often tricky business. But, we love who we love, right? 

No one on this planet can tell you who the right person is to give your heart to; the heart wants what it wants. That said, in order to make your relationship work (whether your love interest is of a different race, religion or nationality), you’ll need skills found outside your normal way of doing things.   

The good news is -- it's been 48 years since the U.S. struck down the last remaining laws that made it illegal for interracial couples to marry. Since 1970, the number of interracial marriages has risen significantly from one percent to 12 percent in 2013.  

Additionally, interfaith marriages are also on the rise with 31 percent of couples polled by Pew Research saying that they’ve married outside of their own religion.

So while the mainstream trend is still to marry someone within your cultural landscape, more and more couples are falling in love with someone outside their race, culture or community of origin.

So, how hard is it for couples from different backgrounds to make their relationship work?

To get to the heart of matter, we brought this question to our YourTango Experts to see how they advise clients with questions about loving someone of a different race, religion or nationality.

Specifically we wanted to explore: What challenges should someone in a multicultural relationship expect to encounter? And: What sage advice can you offer someone who’s fallen in love with a person with a markedly different life experience or world view than their own?

Who better to tackle this question than esteemed author and anthropologist Dr. Helen Fisher, joined by psychologist Dr. Alicia Clark, counselor Marta Rocha and psychologist Dr. Foojan Zeine. Not only did this panel bring their expertise to the discussion, they also shared their own stories of how they overcame loving someone who was "different" than themselves.

According to the panel, we're more similar than it can seem on the surface. And the main thing you don't want to miss in the video above is HOW to see past our differences and connect over shared love and goals.

So whether you love someone who truly looks or approaches life differently than you do, or you simply find that you don't share the same things in common with your beloved, this video has great advice to help you understand how to make sense of your tricky situation.

Learning to embrace what we have in common instead of focusing endlessly on what makes us different is the first step on a journey towards feeling loved and accepted in any relationship.

Take a few minutes to watch the video above, and then spend some time building shared love between you and your partner.

If you need support navigating your interracial or interfaith relationship, don't hesitate to contact the panelists for support. You can learn more by clicking their names above.