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29 Awkward And Confusing Facts About Every American Desi's Life

"ABCD" isn't just the beginning of the alphabet, it's also an identity crisis.

1. You have two names: the correct pronunciation for your Indian family and friends, and the Americanized pronunciation for everyone else.

2. You get made fun of for your American accent when you go to India...

3. And you're self-conscious about your parents' Indian accents when your American friends come over.

4. You have spice-craving Indian taste in a bland American culinary landscape.

5. The downside: bringing elaborate Indian meals to school for lunch while all your friends had PB&Js.

6. Constantly being asked this awful question: "But where are you really from?"

7. And: "What was it like growing up in the third world?"

8. The most difficult decision you made in college was whether to join a dance team, and which one.

9. You've been called a coconut at least once in your life.

10. Every time you misbehaved growing up, your parents threatened to send you to India.

11. And their attempts to keep you connected to your roots meant you spent your childhood in and out of Bharatnatyam and Carnatic singing lessons.

12. Going to the one Bollywood theater in your town meant running into all of your family friends.

13. Your biggest secret is the hardcore Bollywood playlists on your iPod and Spotify.

14. Every time you go back to India to visit your relatives, they're constantly calling you healthy*.

15. But at the same time, they'll feed you relentlessly until "Eat, beta!" sounds like a threat.

16. Another well-meaning threat: "Don't worry, we'll find you a nice Indian husband/wife."

17. Which makes bringing home a non-brown significant other extremely awkward.

18. When people ask you why your English is so good:

19. Or if you speak Hindu:

20. You grew up confused between "Indian-American" and "American Indian."

21. Your parents constantly make you download and test various free international calling apps.

22. Every time someone you know goes to India, you send a shopping list.

23. And every time you go, you in turn become a delivery service for laddoos and sari blouses.

24. You know cricket is in your blood and all, but you truly understand baseball better. Oops.

25. Being repped in popular culture by characters that are math nerds or otherwise caricatured stereotypes.

26. Everyone congratulated you when a brown Miss America was crowned even though you did literally nothing.

27. When your Indian-from-India friends reminisce about their craaazy childhoods, you just listen quietly...

28. Knowing that you had a crazy and wonderful childhood too, as a permanent citizen of chaos and madness.

29. And you wouldn't trade your insane, baffling, incredible American Desi life for anything in the world.