Wrong about racism
Last night I had dinner with my husband. There were six tables on an outdoor terrace, each table with a M/F couple. It was very windy and I noticed the wait staff offering several women a shawl towards the end of the evening. I was having a great night when I looked around and noticed that every woman at each of the other five tables was wearing a restaurant-provided shawl except me. At that moment I felt very excluded and my mind began to wonder why I was never offered a shawl. I noticed I was the only person of color at any table (my husband is also Caucasian) and for whatever reason, I began to wonder if it was because of my race and I said that to my husband. My husband became upset at me for bringing this up and pressured me to ask for a shawl. I didn’t want to ask because in that moment I started feeling somewhat insecure about the situation. Finally I asked since my husband was becoming increasingly more irate that I wasn’t asking and the waitstaff said they had no more shawls left and that they didn’t offer me one because I had an extra shirt wrapped around my waist. I felt bad and ashamed that I diverted to feeling like there may have been racism when there probably wasn’t. However, I felt really hurt in that my husband seemed to lack compassion in a moment where I felt very vulnerable. I tried to explain this to him but it didn’t seem to resonate. Do you think I am justified in feeling hurt by his reaction or was I out of line and he had a right to be upset with me? Feeling a little lost about the whole situation.
Yes. You recognize that this isn’t about a Shaw or racism but rather that you had a feeling of concern and your husband did not respond to your need.
Did you ask him why he didn’t respond to your call for distress? Does this make you feel uneasy that he might not respond if you were in some other kind of distress?
Hopefully he can reassure you that he would have your back.
On the other hand, he was not willing to jump into making this an issue based on your assumption that it was because of racism. Perhaps that’s why he stepped back from your concern. He wasn’t ready to respond at that level.
Accept that you may have been hyper sensitive, and that husband was having no part in making it an issue. The server observed that you were able to handle the weather with your own means.
Perception and reality are not always the same, but your feelings inform your perceptions. So he basically invalidated your feelings in that moment. I don't see why he would to egg you on and pressure you to ask for a shawl though...almost like he wanted the waitstaff to prove you wrong.
Making YOU ask for the shawl, especially when you were feeling self-conscious about your race, is the least gentlemanly/empathetic move he could have made. But since he is not a POC he doesn't truly know where you were coming from. His way of handling the situation was probably fit in his mind because of this racial/cultural disconnect. And like Susie said, you could have been looking too much into the race aspect but that's beside the point in my eyes.
Let him know how you were feeling and how his actions made you feel. Let him know how he can do better next time. Let him express himself as well so he doesn't feel attacked, and hopefully y'all can learn from this!
You had a shirt tied around your waist. You didn't put it on.
Then you noticed other women wearing shawl. You didn't untie your shirt and put it on, you didn't ask for a shawl from the staff, you instead decided to search for some sign of victimization. Your husband told you to ask for a shawl, but you refused. You weren't cold, you had an extra shirt, and nobody could do anything right.
Now you're mad at your husband? for not being sensitive enough? You seem to be walking a mile to get your feelings hurt on this one.