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I am Japanese-Hawaiian (mom’s side) and English-French (dad’s side).

I never knew the term Hapa until recently, but it has liberated me from trying to fit into the box that others have tried to cram me into.

It wasn’t easy being Hapa when I was younger. Kids can be cruel when you look/speak/act differently. All I wanted to do was to fit in and look like all the other white kids in my school. I hated my appearance for many years because it was a constant reminder of what I was not.

But over the years I have come to embrace my unique attributes and I’ve been able to shed my self-loathing and replace it with pride in my Hapa-Kepani-Haole identity!

5 thoughts on “Japanese, Hawaiian…

  1. I didn’t know the word “Hapa” till I was in my late-20’s when I typed in “half asian half white” on yahoo search back in 2005-06. Now I describe myself as a “Hapa.” I think we all went through the same stage growing up. I enjoy reading new stories on Hapa Voice and also it gives me more pride for who I am.

    • Yes, it is definitely empowering to see how many of us are out there and makes me even more proud to be able to identify with others like me!

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