Bill Belew has raised 2 bi-cultural kids, now 34 and 30. And he and his wife are now parenting a 3rd, Mia, who is 8.
These short dads are those that folks who look shorter than the average person would be in that particular community. They tend to stand out in a group. They are often subject to ridicule from their friends and family and also face humiliation in front of their family members and are often looked upon by the society in general for their appearance and features. The world that live in often judges people based on perception therefore, perception plays an important role in this entire process. The reality might be entirely different but that is not how the world works, the world has it biases and these differences and biases are often perpetuated by the media and the electronic and connected world that we live in, in addition to the fact that there is these mental conditioning that we are subjected to and lot of our beliefs and attitudes are shaped by the family and we pick up lot of things from their teachings which they pass on from one generation to the other.
Therefore all the wrong ideas also get passed on in this process and we are knowingly or unknowingly subjected to this situation. All our biases and prejudices get passed on as leanings from one generation to another and this actually creates conflict in ensuring the harmony in the society and we tend to crack jokes on these different individuals who might not be gifted with the same physical features or attributes that we are gifted with.
So therefore these dads face a lot of mental stigma in the sense they feel a terrible sense of longing and pain along with deep psychological suffering that cannot be explained in words. Some of them go to the extreme of committing acts of suicide and end their lives unable to withstand the bullying and the harsh treatment meted out by the society. Some of them other hand take it sportively and move on with their lives with the right attitude and also develop special skills in order to mask this handicap and then strive to stand out and win appreciation from people with their unique skills and talents. This is the way to go in my opinion, yes there are people who do not really care about what others think about them and are therefore withdrawn from any of these involvements and participation. Some of them also go for medical procedures and then correct their deficiencies and try to become one with the society and blend with the general crowd and mingle with people and have a better standing in the community.
We must also as by standers must understand what goes on behind the scenes and try not to hurt the sentiments of these people and point out their deficiencies and shortcomings just because they are different. We must understand that these people also have a life and we should respect that. What happens if one of our kids or brothers or sisters was handicap? Would we treat them in the same way?
We should put ourselves into others shoes and think for a moment before jumping to conclusions in the general scheme of things and must not pass judgement on others based on their physical disability or deficiencies. We must always strive to become a better human being with a sense of compassion and knowledge about the world because knowledge and wisdom really give you that understanding and sensitivity to deal with people with empathy and compassion and not be rude to them in any form or fashion. We must change ourselves in order to better appreciate our own shortcomings.
Talk to Bill and others about their experiences raising bi-cultural Japanese-American kids.