Israelis and Palestinians are supposed to be fierce enemies, so the fact that their daughter was dating an enemy is the reason for the disappointment and outrage in her family.
When society is against an individual, their family is supposed to be there to support them, but in this case the weight of society’s beliefs outweigh their family’s desire to stand behind them.
While there are many adverse factors towards intermarriage, there are many facts and figures pointing towards an increasing acceptance of mixed couples.
Though mixed couples are often scrutinized and put under great pressure from their families and society, the trend of intermarriage will continue to grow and have a very positive affect on the families formed. Miller, an Asian woman, introduced her Caucasian boyfriend Jim to her family, she said, “He [her father] shook Jim’s hand and grunted while looking away when they were introduced.
For the most part, parents of mixed couples do not accept inter-racial and inter-religious relationships, or are at least hesitant about the idea at first. At dinner, he ignored Jim completely, speaking only in Chinese to my aunt (who, incidentally, was surprised to discover he could even speak Chinese)” (Miller 80).
Not all couples receive pressure this extreme from society, but any pressure put on an intermarriage couple could be damaging to a relationship.
The couple may not constantly deal with adversity, but they deal with it enough to make it a factor in their relationship.
This shows that the perception of intermarriage is taking a more positive spin in the publics view and that there are advantages to intermarriage. With racism and discrimination down, people feel less threatened and are able to explore relationships which may not have been possible in the past.
The relationships formed are very close, as the couple must be devoted to deal with any pressure they receive from their family or society.
Inter-religious relationships can be even harder to maintain because of pressure from society.
When a Sunni Muslim and a Shiite Muslim married, “Terrorists, most likely from Al Qaeda, destroyed the Shiites’ Askariya Mosque in Samarra, and Shia militants responded by attacking dozens of Sunni mosques, including two in the local neighborhood of Adhamiya” (Dehghanpisheh, Nordland, and Hastings 24).
People can be quick to judge, and mixed couples often do not gain support right away, if they ever do gain support from their friends and family.
While families are usually somewhat against intermarriage, society is what puts the most pressure on mixed couples.
Miller’s father blatantly did not approve of his daughter dating a white male.