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Ashley Graham Reveals Her Grandmother Initially Rejected Her Interracial Relationship

Ashely Graham may be well known for fighting against body-shaming and being a champion for inclusivity, but it turns out that the model has also experienced another kind of unfair judgement. When Graham first introduced her now-husband to her family, her grandmother refused to accept the interracial relationship.


According to Glamour, Graham discusses the situation in her upcoming memoir, A New Model, where she first admitted that she “didn’t grow up around many Black people,” so when she brought her love, Justin Ervin (who happens to be Black), home to Nebraska to meet her family, things didn’t go well at all.

“I never told my grandparents that the man I was bringing home was Black,” she wrote. “I naively hoped everyone would be color-blind — which is not what happened.” Not only was her family *not* accepting toward her then-boyfriend, but they were downright racist toward Ervin. Graham continued, “When my grandparents met Justin, my grandmother was cordial but cold. She greeted him and immediately walked away. When it came time for them to leave, my grandparents didn’t even acknowledge him. Instead my grandmother looked me in the eye, with Justin standing behind me, and said, ‘Tell that guy I said goodbye.’” Oof.

Ashley Graham and Justin Ervin

The 29-year-old added, “I had never seen my loving, hardworking, and wonderful grandma be so hurtful and so racist. I was in shock.” Ervin, on the other hand, felt differently, telling Graham, “Racism is never surprising but always disappointing.”

While Graham admits that her grandmother had “probably never looked a Black man in the face, let alone had a conversation with him” before meeting Ervin, things have now changed after Ashley’s husband made an effort to reach out to the older woman by calling to congratulate her on her 60th wedding anniversary. “From then on out, she loved him,” Graham revealed.

You’ll be able to read more about this family-related situation and more when Ashley Graham’s A New Model comes out on May 9.

Have you ever dealt with racism in interracial dating? Let us know @BritandCo!

(h/t Refinery29; photos via Slaven Vlasic + Gustavo Caballero/Getty)

Desiree O
Desirée O is a ‘Professional Bohemian’ who loves anything and everything related to the arts, entertainment, and pop culture. She ADORES being a ‘Newsy’ for Brit + Co, covering all of the latest tidbits of awesomeness that you want to read about. When she’s not writing, she’s either making messy art, going on long adventurous walks with her camera, or poking around over at bohemianizm (http://www.bohemianizm.com/). You can find out about Desirée O and her work at http://DesireeO.com/ or follow her on Twitter @DesireeO.

Alright, folks. We've officially made it to fall. And if you haven't already started switching out your decor (as long as it's ready by Friendsgiving, right?) you still have time to do so. Draw inspiration from this round-up of new home products that includes harvest-inspired candles, cozy linens and textiles, and a v. practical piece of furniture. One scroll through these, and you'll have all the motivation you need to transition the seasons. Scroll on to start shopping.

Prism x LOREM Collection ($96+): Calling all Cali babes. The popular Long Beach boutique, Prism, announced a boho-fabulous collab with home decor line, LOREM, that we can't get enough of. Shop everything from plant hangers (eight options, to be exact) to artwork, all inspired by the very colorful vibes of the brands. If you were looking for a cheery way to tide you through winter, this. is. it!

Floyd Mattress (Price TBD): Fans of the cult-favorite Detroit-based brand will love their latest launch debuting on October 29. The highly-coveted Floyd Mattress will have the same made-to-last design and superior comfort as their other furnishings, tailored perfectly to fit the line's in-demand bed frame. Additional details for the mattress include a breathable foam material, highly-mobile packaging, and a low-profile design to secure your best night's sleep yet. Check back on the last week of the month to get one for yourself.

Dims 'Composed Vanity' ($595): Small space? No problem! Direct-to-consumer brand, Dims, is giving you a quick and stylish solution to your storage needs with their newest item that doubles as both a desk and vanity. The functional piece is made with non-toxic, chemical-free materials and can be assembled in seven minutes or less. Throw in four sleek shades to choose from, and this may just be your best purchase of 2019 yet!

Saatchi Art x The Citizenry Holiday Collection ($225+): Get ready to deck your walls this holiday season. Saatchi Art partnered with The Citizenry in a one-of-a-kind collection that features a curation of art across styles. Explore everything from modern to abstract creations in a selection so stunning, it's bound to spark a conversation at your next gathering.

NEST Spiced Orange & Clove Collection ($16+): If you haven't experienced the addicting aromas of the beloved NEST fragrance brand, this is the perfect time to get on board! The label recently released their latest scent — spiced orange & clove — just in time for all your gatherings. Inhale festive notes of orange pomander, spiced brandy, cinnamon, and gingered honey across their suite of candles and diffusers to bring all the good vibes to your home.

Bloomingdales x RiLEY Home ($19+): RiLEY Home gets millennials. So they teamed up with Bloomingdales to make shopping their selection more attainable than ever. Now, you can get in on long-lasting, luxurious staples like flannel sheets, bedding, printed throws, premium pet beds, and more, by shopping online and in-stores at the department store. (Trust us: These dream goods are ones you're going to be *glad* you stocked-up on.)

Italic Serene Towels ($12+): The luxury brand that prides itself on using the *same* factories namesake brands (like Calvin Klein and Lacoste) use, but without the price tag behind them, brings you a new product for fall. Treat yourself to Italic's ultra-soft towel set spun from fluffy, 100% Australian cotton, in a convenient set of six. Consider it the perfect indulgence after a long soak in the tub on a cozy FNI (Friday night in)!

Hyascent x Neiman Marcus ($169): 'Tis the season for a delightfully scented home. Warm your abode with scents like bourbon joy, cheeky rose and more in a unique diffuser that doubles more as decor than a fragrance-inducer. Fresh off the (online) shelves of Neiman Marcus, explore nine scents that last up to six months in a specialized hourglass holder. (Shhh! Your friends will never know the secret of why your place smells so darn good!)