China's amazing economic boom aside, Chinese society still adheres to many traditional customs. Being that marriage and family are at the core of Chinese culture, many Chinese still marry to fulfill obligations to their family and to society and, in a lot of instances, marriage is still more of a business transaction than a union of two people who love each other. With the personal freedoms afforded to them, however, combined with the great opportunities made available to them, more and more women are desiring a marriage of love, instead of a marriage of necessity.
Considering that Chinese society has existed for thousands of years, its marriage customs have undergone very little change. Even as China's modern women are now enjoying great career, business, and financial successes, their reasons for getting married are still more or less tied to traditional attitudes and expectations.
In fact, the only indication that marriage customs in China have kept up with the changing times and the country's economic boom is the fact that many successful Chinese women have been choosing their mates based on the good career/business/financial potential the marriage has to offer.
But at the end of the day, these marriages are still formed out of practical necessity; the context may have changed, but the (traditional) purpose has remained the same.
More and more of China's self-made daughters, as well as those who are just now coming of age in China's current economic atmosphere of abundant possibilities, are seeking a different purpose for marriage. A lot of these women are now indulging their desire to marry for love, and they are seeking foreign men to fulfill this desire.
Given that love, or at least romantic love, has, more often than not, been a non-existent factor in Chinese marriages for millennia, it is no surprise that Chinese men are not able to meet this growing need that many modern women of China are now yearning to have filled.
And given that the great successes of these women have also given them more freedom to choose who and when to marry, they can now also afford to choose why they should marry.
Traditional expectations, obligations, and attitudes still persist and hold a lot of women back from exploring the beauty and joy of marrying for love; but a growing number of women are now realizing that love is as good a reason as any, if not the most important, to marry.
Does this make them selfish? Does it make them irreverent of age-old customs, especially the tradition of filial piety? On the contrary, wanting to pursue personal reasons to marry and to satisfy personal needs, as opposed to indulging the old-fashioned reasons and satisfying the expectations of their family and the greater society, is simply a different approach to appreciating the value of family.
Rather than marrying for money, to get ahead in life, or for prestige, love has become the most important reason and the ultimate goal for many of these women. After all, marriage should still be about family, not financial, business, or political opportunities.
It must be pointed out that because a lot of these women seeking love and foreign life partners are self-made and have no real need to depend on a marriage contract to get ahead in life or to have a secure future, they are also probably the most honest and the most committed about their intentions to marry.
It is often said that money, and success, can't buy love and happiness; but in the case of many modern women of China, their successes and resulting financial independence have actually afforded them the opportunity to choose to find love and happiness in marriage.
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