Would You Date a Guy From a Trailer Park?

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I try not to judge a book by it’s cover because usually the cover very seldom reveals what is written inside of the book. A few years ago I passed judgment on one of my good friends based on a social stigma. It took me less than two minutes to realize what I’d done and apologized profusely. But to this date I am still embarrassed by what I‘d said.

My friend was a single dad raising his son, going to school, while working full-time. He lived in a trailer park. He was trying to save up money to move to a different state and provide a better life for his boy. In the end, he did achieve all of his goals: he got a good job in the state where he wanted to live and he bought a house. As of today he is planning to send his son off to college.

Back in the day his love life was not going very well. The contributing factors to his unfortunate dating situation was the lack of time, lack of money and the big gaping stigma of living in a trailer park. 

One night at school he told me that not a lot of girls wanted to go out with him when they heard that he lived in a trailer park. I nodded understandingly, and without a second thought or any glimpse of hesitation, I eagerly admitted that I would not go out with him either:

girls don’t like to date trailer park guys. 

In my mind I saw a trailer park as a place where crime and drugs ruled. A trailer park was a place filled with trashy, stupid and brutal hillbillies drinking beer, throwing darts, shooting birds and raping an occasional passerby. Deliverance, anyone?

My friend was hurt.

“Just because I live close to the garbage, it does not mean I am the garbage,” he said.

Then it hit me . He chose to live in the trailer park because in that particular stage of his life it made sense to him. It was the way for him to lower his living expenses and save up for his son’s future.

Sometimes people have to make hard choices that others might never approve or understand. But life is not about other people’s approval. It is about you and your choices.

Ironically enough, a few years later, I moved into a low income apartment building where I lived for one year. It was not a trailer park but some of my girlfriends refused to come and visit me because they were scared of my neighbors.

My neighborhood was tough: junkies, whores and some poor students like me. I made a choice to move to this apartment because it was cheap, clean and in a great location. I could walk to most of the places I needed, saving on gas. I was able to save quite a bit. A year later Beaker and I bought our condo.

Did living in this shitty place make me a junkie or a whore? Of course not.

Just because you live close to the garbage, it does not mean that you are the garbage.

51 thoughts on “Would You Date a Guy From a Trailer Park?”

  1. Can’t agree more. Look at Chairman at Xerox corp. She was raised in a ghetto in her childhood. But, we average out people by looking at where they love, you did nothing wrong by telling him that. He also thinks that way or else why had he moved on from there?

  2. Lesson learned. My husband and I currently live in a guesthouse, and it is very embarrassing sometimes but it’s what we have to do to save money and get by. I know it won’t be like this forever.

    1. A guesthouse is not as bad as a trailer park or my ghetto apartment where my friends were scared to come.

  3. You got me there! I really don’t know: intellectually of course I will be the first to admit the danger of making assumptions. Existentially, I have never been in a similar situation.

    1. It is a tricky question, I know. I was lucky to never face the choice like this because I am pretty sure I would not date a guy from a trailer park.

  4. I don’t know if I would date a guy that live in a trailer park. I guess the stereo type is really powerful. I’m pretty open minded in general and usually don’t pass quick judgement.

    1. Yep, I am still pretty sure that I would dismiss Beaker as a potential date if he would be from a trailer park. 🙂

  5. I hate to admit it, but I can almost definitely say that I would be inclined to not date someone from a trailer park. I think there are a lot of ways that people can be judged that are unfair (how they look, dress, etc), and I think think judging people is probably most prevalent when it comes to dating. Again, I hate to say it, but I think judging people to some degree is limits who we spend our previous time with and date.

    1. I totally understand you! I was the same way until I ended up in that ghetto apartment and my girlfriends refused to visit me there. The trailer park stigma is pretty big.

  6. So very true. However how do we get the world to know that? Would I date a guy from a trailer park? No. I am a guy who likes girls but if you wanted to know the male perspective I would say It depends who the person is and how I feel about them instinctually. Unfortunately I won’t ever know because I am married to a Colombian woman. That should be a topic of my next blog. Would you ever date a Colombian Woman?

    Question? Do you know what a Colombian neck tie is?
    I do. 🙂

    1. Colombian women are beautiful, Jay. I am not surprised you are married to one. 🙂 So what is a Colombian neck tie? Do I dare to ask? 🙂

  7. I think it would depend on the trailer park. I live in east Tennessee and well there a A LOT of trailer parks around. I would hate to miss out on the love of my life because I was so judgmental. It would also depend on the person. Life is tough right now. People are down are their luck. If the person had no drive or ambition then definitely not. I mean who wants to live in a trailer park forever?

    1. This is so true. Any of us can end up in a trailer park, or on a bench in some park. But somehow it is difficult to believe that it is possible to meet a good guy in a trailer park. I am biased I guess towards my friend but I think he was an exception.

  8. We shouldn’t be quick to judge, but we can’t be totally oblivious either. Granted his feelings were hurt and he only did it to make ends meet. But he has to step out of his shoes and realize, objectively, most people would naturally react the way you did. I’m sure your friend is a good guy, but there are dangers around a trailer park you cannot ignore. I’m glad he turned his life around.

    1. I think he thought at the time that being smart and charming would conceal the trailer park. Unfortunately for him, he was wrong.

  9. My BF’s sister introduced us to this guy she was seeing (she met him online) and he wasn’t the motivated type of guy. He was very chill, got his license suspended for drinking and driving a few years ago (and still doens’t have a car).

    She ended up breaking it up with him because she couldn’t see a future with him. He was just too unmotivated 🙁

    1. Unmotivated men drive me crazy! Not just in personal life but at work as well. I can go on and on and on… But I will stop here. 🙂

    1. Well, I wonder if those are some kind of luxury trailer parks. 🙂 Not sure if such a thing even exists.

  10. When I was dating it would have depended on the guy and why they were living there. I can’t imagine that’s something that would come up super early-on anyway…

    1. Well, I would expect a guy to tell me that he lives in a trailer park if not on a first date, then at least on the next one and probably our last.) It is an awful thing to say but it is true. I think I am still biased about it when it does not come down to my friend or me. 🙂

  11. You were just being honest when you said you wouldn’t date a trailer park guy, until you realized that maybe you would. If your friend was good enough to date, then others must be too.

    This is something a lot of us struggle with in society, the pressure to do things by the “rules.” If you don’t want to work 80 hours a week, then you must be lazy.

    Hopefully we can shift to a culture that values people for the intentions and actions.

    Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

    1. No, I don’t think I realized that I would date a guy from a trailer park. I think I realized that I applied stigma to a close friend who did not deserve it.

  12. I’m not sure what I would do. In my state, particularly in the more rural parts, trailer parks are way more common than apartment complexes. I don’t know that living in a trailer park would prevent me from dating someone but, if I’m being honest, I might not spend as much time at his place…depending on the trailer park. There are actually some pretty decent ones in the rural areas. Also, it depends on the reason he’s living there. If it was someone like your friend, I see no reason why I wouldn’t date him. But if he was a lazy junkie, then I definitely would run far, far away.

    1. He was my close friend and I never visited him at his place. I could not force myself to go to that trailer park. Honestly, I was scared of it and people who lived there… I never was there but I had a strong opinion about it. I call it bias.

  13. I love your friend’s quote, it’s simple and powerful. Trailer parks are pretty common in California, but they do have a big stigma associated with them. It’s too bad. And yet, the neighborhood I live in in LA is fairly expensive and yet it’s still considered “ghetto” and “scary” by some people. The good news, there are always going to be judge-y people around to rain on your parade. I try to spend less time with people who say a lot of ignorant things. One or two ignorant statements is OK, but when it becomes a pattern…ditch ’em :O)

    1. People will always judge people. I think it is in our blood and society actually teaches us to do by setting up stigmas. I am guilty of it as charged!

  14. I grew up being judged. I was always treated quite poorly as a child and I hated it. I hated being judged before people got to know me. In lieu of this I have always tried really hard to keep an open mind and give people the benefit of the doubt. I would never want anyone to feel the way I did nor would I want to be the one responsible for it if they did. This lesson I learned early in life has allowed me to meet numerous interesting people and I am grateful.

    1. Interesting! I grew up being judged too. I was trying to hang out with some kids. They did not want to be my friends. For one simple reason: we were from different social circles. It hurt me back then (when I was 8.)

  15. When I was a wee toddler Bexxx, my mom started dating my stepdad who lived in a trailer down by the river (upgrade from a van down by the river). I have distinct memories of hanging out there, playing with the other girls (because there were always a ton of kids around, which was awesome), and the trailer park flooding and our resulting floating car. Most of my first friends were trailer park kids, even though my mom and I lived in a “Real House.”

    I think that my early proximity lead me to understand why sometimes you have to pull yourself up by the bootstraps and make the decisions for which you’ll be judged. As long as you’re still trying 🙂

    BTW, I live in a very safe neighborhood in Queens and no one wants to come visit me because it’s not Brooklyn or Manhattan. Friends are the worst haha

    1. Bexxx, I really enjoy your comment! It is quite a story worth a separate post in itself.
      When it comes down to friends, it can be complicated for a lot different reasons. One of my girlfriends refused to leave a car when we pulled up to my apartment building. She saw my neighbors smoking outside and was horrified by the way they looked. Those neighbors of mine looked rough and tough but were actually nice.

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  17. On the converse to this, I’ve also seen both girls and women who date guys whom appear to be “all there” yet suddenly change to garbage of one form or another once the guy moves in with them.

    And having lived in a trailer park in lower New York state, I can also say it depends on the park. Half the people in my park lived there so they didn’t pay property taxes! I knew four people who owned a business from that park. Yes, there was the garbage there too, but you could tell who was who by the condition of the trailer.

    1. Still the trailer is not a house. Why would you want to live in something that is so… move-able. I am not saying it is wrong. I am just saying that I never quite understood it.

    1. I am sure that there’ll always be some exceptions to the rule. Still I would not be that brave to date someone from a trailer park.

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  22. I know this is not the politically correct answer however why should a girl want to date a guy who lives in a trailer park or somewhere that is not so nice in terms if hygine, cleanliness?

    It’s not about having money or being flashy – I am just not interested in guys who do not have the same standards for living as me.

    Thought provoking post!

  23. Shame on you real house people! ya so a mobile home can be moved overnight but a house can be moved in a week, a trailer has a roof, walls,and floor, if being debt free having my 4 bedroom home paid off built in 99 with bb courts,swimming pool I dont have to clean all before my 35th bday with 3 kids then I don’t wanna be right and really who doesn’t know a few crazy wacked out trashy people in all kinds of neighbor hoods! Love in the trailer park

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  30. I dated a geek that lived in a trailor park (and still does) while I was in high school. I did it because I was just learning about dating and it was an invitation to go to a formal dance which I was thrilled about! But the more I got to know him the worse he became not only physically unattractive but he had a lousy personality as well. I eventually ended things and cut all contact right before I graduated from high school. I got married, had a baby and got divorced. He found out and started telling mutual friends that he was still interested in me even though I was divorced and a single mother. Even though over 20 years has passed my opinion has not changed. The fact that he still lives in the same trailor park with his father is s big part of it. But I have no physical attraction to him or his personality either. He has never been married and is in his 40’s which bothers me too!

  31. At first I didn’t know my boyfriend lived in a trailer park. I thought he lived with his cousin in a condo. But I never been to his trailer, he dresses like a regular white kid, he’s not dirty, but he talks like he’s from a country side because he’s from South Carolina. I guess it’s there Normal outing to live around people who are like them and get along. But he isn’t trash, at first he was embarrassed for himself and his family to let me see there home. I didn’t understand the problem.my parents seen this as a bad idea and didn’t want me to go over there. But I don’t want to hurt my boyfriends feelings. We joke about his accent sometimes but that’s because we think it’s adorable. He’s nothing like any guy I dated, he treats me like his girlfriend and wants to be with me 24/7. So I don’t think it’s the shell of the turtle, I think it’s what the turtle is hiding under the shell that counts. Or in this case, the trailer.

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