8 First-Generation Kids Tell Their Story


“What was often tough as a first-generation American kid,” Heba told me, “was explaining things that were so culturally normal in America, like going to sleepovers or having a boyfriend, to which I’d receive a hard “no” or “la” (Arabic for no).”

It’s easy to call communities “melting pots,” but what does it really feel like when cultures mix inside a single home, a single person? When your birth – your life — marks a huge geographical and cultural shift in your family’s history? I talked to eight people about what it’s still like to be first-generation. Their situations are all different and yet they’re threaded together by similar anecdotes both comical and emotional. Click through above to read their stories.

Photos by Simon Chetrit.

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