Dating a person with a very different background

Just curious,

Lots of my friends’ parents and my own parents seem to believe in us kids marrying inside our own circle ie someone of similar education, socio-economic background, language, ethnicity, etc. etc.

Their rationalization is that these marriages may have better chance in the long term, less friction, less pressure.

My own take is that I’m very skeptical as many of these parents have failed marriages, extramarital affairs, unhappy family life, etc.

That said, I suppose some of that commonality might make it easier to bond. Language in a place like Taiwan, with this expat community, seems to be a non-issue in the long run for those that marry. Education and interests… well… to be frank… I wouldn’t want to talk shop with my gf/wife, and I don’t expect her to have the same reading interests as me. That’s what I have guy friends for.

So I’m just curious about your experiences, have you ever dated someone with an upbringing radically different from yours. For e.g. you have a degree, she didn’t finish high school, but became a full-time athlete at an early age. You speak English, she speaks Chinese, and a sprinkling of English. etc. etc. You’ve lived in many cities; she’s never left the country. I mean, sure, there may be love now, but will those differences, in the long run, be tough to deal with?

How hot is she?

[quote=“Jack Burton”]Just curious,

Lots of my friends’ parents and my own parents seem to believe in us kids marrying inside our own circle ie someone of similar education, socio-economic background, language, ethnicity, etc. etc.

Their rationalization is that these marriages may have better chance in the long term, less friction, less pressure.[/quote]Maybe they’re really scared of outsiders, or people of a different colour?

I used to bang this chick who was on the Olympic swim team…killer lats and thighs…dumber than a bag of hammers…
I found out she’d gone and slept with her former boyfriend.
Her defense: “Yeah, but I didn’t come…”

All you need is love…

Seriously.

Sure. And mutual interests are important too. You don’t have to talk shop with her, but if you’re both interested in at least some of your regular activities, it will go a long way toward holding the relationship together.

Yes, I’ve dated gals who were very different in a lot of ways, including country of origin, mother tongue, languages spoken, education, age, faith, girth – all kinds of things. Having at least SOME interests and activities in common was therefore even more important.

Sure. And mutual interests are important too. You don’t have to talk shop with her, but if you’re both interested in at least some of your regular activities, it will go a long way toward holding the relationship together.

Yes, I’ve dated gals who were very different in a lot of ways, including country of origin, mother tongue, languages spoken, education, age, faith, girth – all kinds of things. Having at least SOME interests and activities in common was therefore even more important.[/quote]

Erm… “girth”?

We are circumferentially incompatible, yes.

Oh, you mean your waist? Sorry, it’s just that when I use the word “girth”, I’m usually talking about another part of my body (5", before you ask)

(in an unexcited state)

Them’s “Irish inches”, of course.

I think how you manage having different cultural backgrounds is more important than the differences per se. For instance, I had a couple of friends who, among the causes for the split, was that she did not eat the (Western) food he prepared. This issue escalated until they could not even eat together. It also sparked discussions regarding other things they had differences and eventually… Maybe something is not that important to you, maybe it is, but small issues grow if you let them become a major issue and do not keep an open mind and good communication. Of course, you also have tounderstand in which issues you are willing to compromise and where you draw the line. In summary, as with every other kind of relationship, you need to know yourself and be whole before you add someone else to the equation.

thanks for the serious and not-so-serious answers.

So, she’s been raised by the State essentially, as a full-time athlete (modern pentathlon), so it makes me somewhat nervous that she didn’t have a traditional family background; ie her family was her coach and other teammates. Anyone have experience with that? I mean, I feel that she is a good person with values similar as mine, but maybe we haven’t known each other long enough to know (and unless we experience stressful situations). I’m not sure I know how to deal with that (not that my family isn’t dysfunctional like almost all families I know)

As for mutual interests, most of it is sports and outdoors activities, though in watching movies, I feel maybe we think the same way (or react the same way in a very subtle fashion).

Maybe I need more time to know this person.

Icon, I’m pretty good at managing different cultural backgrounds, methinks mostly because I come into contact with lots of different cultures, peoples, food, friends, cities, history, and I love the diversity. I think since she’s quite Chinese, I have to tone down my multiculturalism (e.g. I can’t use other languages; she’s not fond of foreign food, etc.)

[quote=“Dragonbones”] And mutual interests are important too. You don’t have to talk shop with her, but if you’re both interested in at least some of your regular activities, it will go a long way toward holding the relationship together.
[/quote]

i hear fisting is a good place to begin with,
most videos on this are couples in their late 50’s/ 60’s

[quote=“dablindfrog”][quote=“Dragonbones”] And mutual interests are important too. You don’t have to talk shop with her, but if you’re both interested in at least some of your regular activities, it will go a long way toward holding the relationship together.
[/quote]

I hear fisting is a good place to begin with,
most videos on this are couples in their late 50’s/ 60’s[/quote]

Thanks for sharing your own experience, but perhaps that’s a little too much information, more than we’d like to know about you. But good luck with that if that’s your thing.

[quote=“Jack Burton”]Just curious,

Lots of my friends’ parents and my own parents seem to believe in us kids marrying inside our own circle ie someone of similar education, socio-economic background, language, ethnicity, etc. etc.

Their rationalization is that these marriages may have better chance in the long term, less friction, less pressure.

My own take is that I’m very skeptical as many of these parents have failed marriages, extramarital affairs, unhappy family life, etc.

That said, I suppose some of that commonality might make it easier to bond. Language in a place like Taiwan, with this expat community, seems to be a non-issue in the long run for those that marry. Education and interests… well… to be frank… I wouldn’t want to talk shop with my gf/wife, and I don’t expect her to have the same reading interests as me. That’s what I have guy friends for.

So I’m just curious about your experiences, have you ever dated someone with an upbringing radically different from yours. For e.g. you have a degree, she didn’t finish high school, but became a full-time athlete at an early age. You speak English, she speaks Chinese, and a sprinkling of English. etc. etc. You’ve lived in many cities; she’s never left the country. I mean, sure, there may be love now, but will those differences, in the long run, be tough to deal with?[/quote]

Still scared to bring Brown sugar home to mom? :laughing:

I’d agree with that. It’s more about accepting each other for who and what you are. It’s trying to change people where all the shit starts.

Yeah seriously

When you’re younger, people tell you to really know yourself so you can find someone compatible. Then I look at the married couples I know who have been together 20+ years. I don’t know how they stay together, their personalities are so incompatible. They manage. However, I will say that some cultural differences can put a real strain on the relationship. Communication styles or expectations…

The good thing about love and relationships is that there really are no rules. Soon as you have a rule there’s an exception.

A relationship is an adventure. And most of them will eventually fail. The value in them is not the destination, it really is the journey."

They will help you define who YOU are as a person.

Surely it is necessary to have at least a few things in common. Even if it’s only love for food, or even only desire for sex. But in my (very limited) experience the educational background or the country of origin is not a very decisive factor. After all, you can find dumb university graduates as well as super-intelligent unskilled labour… Actually, if your partner comes from a totally different background, it can mean you have lots more to talk about and get to broaden your horizon :slight_smile: