No relationship is perfect; whether it's a traditional relationship, a May-December one, a long-distance one, or a cross-cultural one, there will always be ups and downs. Just as the happy moments can bring two people closer together, the fights and disagreements can also strengthen a relationship as long as both parties handle the situation well, both learn from it, and as long as both are willing to forgive, forget, and keep moving forward. Chinese dating, of course, also has its share of disputes and misunderstandings, and those involved can and must take away valuable lessons from them and use these lessons to determine if the relationship is worth pursuing.
With Chinese dating, especially while in its early stages and whether online or offline, meanings can often get lost in translation and culturally-influenced attitude incompatibilities. Sometimes, the smallest thing can set the other person off, not because one was being callous and intentionally hurtful, but simply because he/she did not know any better as a result of a lack of a deeper understanding of his/her partner and/or his/her circumstances and culture. How a person reacts to a perceived affront or to their partner's alleged inconsiderate behavior can also spark off a fight or exacerbate it.
What a foreign man and a Chinese woman in such a situation must remember (and they should already realize this even before entering any cross-cultural relationship) is that while the unique nuisances and difficulties of being involved with a person who is so culturally different from them may have put them in a predicament, the disagreement or fight is essentially no different from those that they have also dealt with before in the past, with previous partners who may have behaved in a way that or said something they didn't approve of or which rubbed them the wrong way.
Understanding this, they would also realize that they can deal with the situation in the same way that two, adult, and mature individuals must do so: calmly and clear-headedly. As with all fights, raging emotions often cause one or both to say hurtful things they do not really mean and which they would regret later. Being angry or upset interferes with one's ability to think clearly, communicate effectively, and behave sensitively toward their partner. One's temper often gets in the way of his/her ability and willingness to understand the other person and the situation as a whole. When the situation is volatile, anything uttered of anger and hurt can only cause more anger and hurt; it can even cause the relationship to fall apart right then and there.
As with any fight or disagreement, the key to a proper resolution is for both persons to take the time to calm down, preferably separately. They should opt to leave each other alone while the other or both of them settle their roiling emotions and sort out their agitated thoughts. When they are both ready to talk calmly and with clear heads, then they can begin to analyze the problem together, figure out what went wrong, come to understanding and/or compromise, and fix the situation.
A foreign man and a Chinese woman should also take the time, separately, to figure out how the fight or disagreement affects their feelings toward the other and toward their relationship. They should also engage in some introspection to understand what that particular fight or disagreement says about them as a person and as a partner. The conclusions each of them arrives at must assure them that the other person and the relationship are both worth the effort it would take to understand and accept whatever imperfections they each might have and worth the leap of faith it will take to commit to each other for the rest of their lives.
Relationship disputes are not always detrimental; two people can learn new things about themselves and each other in the process. They can learn if the two of them are capable of surviving such situations and if their relationship will become stronger as a result. Each of them would and should learn what they are willing to accept and how far they are willing to go for the other and for the relationship. One or both of them can make a more informed decision if the relationship is still worth pursuing or if they should move on to new possibilities because they are simply not suitable for each other.
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