Olympian Suni Lee Says She Received ‘Hate’ For Dating Black Man

In Summary

Olympian Suni Lee recently went public with her interracial relationship and she says she's faced hate from the Hmong-American community.  

Olympic gold medalist Sunisa “Suni” Lee says she has received hate from members of the Hmong-American community over her interracial relationship.  

Lee, who is of Asian descent, was the first Hmong-American Olympic gymnast. On social media, the 18-year-old spoke about her experience receiving “so much hate” over her relationship with boyfriend Jaylin Smith, who is Black.  

RELATED: Gallup: US Approval of Interracial Marriage at 94% 

According to People, on Dec. 30, a video posted on TikTok showed support for Lee and Smith’s relationship. The caption on the video said, “I know that Sunisa will be judged by certain eyes in the Hmong Community because her man is Black. LOVE is LOVE, no matter what race or gender you are. Keep doing you QUEEN.”  

Lee responded in the comments of the video saying, “This makes me so happy. I’ve received so much hate. They support me when it’s beneficial for them, never when it comes to my happiness. Thank you!”  

The couple’s relationship went public in Dec. 2021, when Lee posted a photo of herself with the University of Southern California football player on Instagram. Comments on the post have been disabled.  

As an Asian American, Lee is no stranger to violent racism. In November, she and a group of friends, who were all of Asian descent, were pepper-sprayed and had racial slurs hurled at them during a night out in Los Angeles.  

RELATED: Olympian Suni Lee Reveals She Was Victim of Racist Attack  

If you or someone you know is struggling from trauma triggered by this story, resources are available here.   

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