A born white male named Adam now considers himself as Filipino named Ja Du.
Ja Du is one of them who consider themselves as transracial, which is now referred to a person born of one race and identifies with another race.
According to Ja Du, he grew up enjoying Filipino culture including food and events.
He said, “Whenever I’m around the music, around the food, I feel like I’m in my own skin.”
Stacey Schreckner who is a Tampa-based psychologist said that she hasn’t ever encountered with a client who wanted to change his race in her career.
“If someone feels that they feel at home with a certain religion, a certain race, a certain culture, I think that, if that’s who they really feel inside, life is about finding out who you are,” Schreckner said. “The more knowledge you have of yourself, the happier you can be”
She said, “And, as long as it’s not hurting yourself or anyone else, I don’t see a problem with that.”
Ja Du’s family still doesn’t know about it as he hasn’t told them as he thinks that they will laugh at his idea of changing ethnicity.
She said, “If that’s who they are and they want to celebrate it and enjoy it, then you have to think: What harm is it doing? All they want to do is throw themselves into that culture and celebrate it.”
“I think before we get offended, we need to take a step back and think about what is the harm,” she added.
According to Schreckner, if one is going to have such drastic change, he should talk to a professional.
She said, “I work with a lot, in my 15 years, a lot of transgender people.” She continued: “Before the doctors that I send them to do any type of physical changes to their body, they go through a long process with me and actually most the people, they are not upset about it because they want to make sure that they’re doing the right thing.”
In Ja Du’s case that brings another big change. Ja Du is transsexual and determined to change his gender. He had a conversation with his mother and his family about that as well.
Ja Du is absolutely aware that some people may intentionally question him and even accuse him of cultural appropriation. According to him, it could be an issue and he doesn’t want to take advantage of anything that happens.
He said, “I don’t want that.” He added, “I think that we all have the freedoms to pursue happiness in our own ways.”