Free from fear or favour
No tracking. No cookies

‘Creating a Space for People Who Find Themselves Between Cultures and Identity’

The team behind the ‘In-Between Lines’ initiative, which explores the adopted and mixed-race experience, share why it is so important to talk about the complexity of identity

The team behind ‘In-Between Lines’

Newsletter offer

Subscribe to our newsletter for exclusive editorial emails from the Byline Times Team.

People put others into categories so they can understand them. A person of colour. An adopted child. Good or bad, these social categories help make sense of the world around us as they highlight familiar traits and patterns. But what about a person of colour who grew up in a fully white family? Or an adopted child, raised in British culture, who grew up in Asia? Suddenly, these categories hurt instead of help and don’t make as much sense. 

‘In-Between Lines’ is an initiative created by those with first-hand knowledge of what happens when these labels fail to represent us. 

Brought together by a shared ambition of bringing awareness of how people can fall ‘in-between the lines’ of conventional categories, the project highlights the unique dynamic between adopted or multi-heritage children and their clash with societal norms. Interelating identities are explored through exhibitions of art, text and audience prompts, alongside conversation panels and spoken word. 

Through In-Between Lines, we discuss not feeling ‘white’ or ‘ethnic’ enough, dealing with internal (and external) racism, and questioning stereotypes. 

As the four creators, here is what it means to us personally… 


For me, In-Between Lines is exciting because it connects people across different lived experience. We’ve had many people with non-adoptee and mixed identities, such as migrants or people growing up in non-nuclear families, who have resonated with our feelings of loneliness. Generally, In-Between Lines offers a glimpse into both the potential challenges and opportunities of complex identities. For example, I find it really difficult to reconcile both the racial trauma and the privilege of colourism that my mixedness provides. 

Personal identity is so multi-dimensional and constantly conversing with wider societal discussions about race, culture and family – so it’s often impossible to provide concrete, timeless answers. However, I hope our audiences feel empowered to have these conversations with more skill, nuance and connection to themselves and others.


In-Between Lines for me means creating a safe space for people who find themselves in between cultures and identity. It gives me the opportunity to talk about my experience and share it with people to show them that they are not alone. 

Together with like-minded individuals, I want to share the mixed and adopted experience through art, poetry and conversation. 

In-Between Lines allowed me to work through some of my struggles growing up – throughout the exhibition I have talked about my experiences with internalised racism, external racism and fitting in.

Don’t miss a story


Starting In-Between Lines was definitely the beginning of self-discovery. It was a chance to investigate the different parts of me – the places I grew up in, the cultures I have the privilege to be a part of, and the disjointed feeling of belonging, and how they led to who I am today. 

It’s been amazing to see the project resonate with so many people. The more I learn about the mixed and adopted experience in the UK, the more I see how necessary it is for us to talk about our experiences. 

For example, right now, mixed Caribbean students are being excluded from school at twice the rate of the national average with very little talk on the causes and consequences. I hope In-Between Lines will grow to address these issues so people from these groups no longer have to live between the margins that we have created. 


In-Between Lines was an opportunity for me to explore an under-appreciated part of my identity. I have never been desperate to find my birth parents, but I didn’t realise the healing that could come about by learning about my adopted identity. 

Through this exploration, I have been able to uncover how my transracial adopted identity interacts with my daily life and relate to people who experience a similar thing. It has been an incredibly enlightening experience that I am thrilled to be able to share with our community. 

The feedback that we have received is wonderful – so many people have been able to find a safe space amid the walls of our exhibitions and use it as a time to process their trauma or simply relax. It is this healing effect that makes me excited to take the initiative forward.

In-Between Lines is proud to have created a supportive community of people with complex cultural and racial identities. Whether you are a transracial adoptee, identify as multi-heritage, or a third culture kid, the initiative is a safe space to unpack your feelings and connect with others in similar situations.

This sense of community is especially important to those who felt like they were the only salmon in a sea full of trout – they are not alone.

In-Between Lines is important in that respect because not only does it connect people, it also makes it clear that complex identities exist. 

To find out more: Instagram (@inbetweenlinesorg) and TikTok (@inbetweenlinesorg)

Written by

This article was filed under
, ,