Chinese women may have become westernized in a lot of ways, even when it comes to their attitudes toward dating and relationships; but many still possess certain traditional values that attach importance to a high degree of devotion and permanence in relationships. Foreign men dating Chinese women will meet some who are open to casual dating and taking their time getting to know each other without having huge expectations; but a lot of times, the women they’ll meet will not be looking for anything temporary and uncertain.
Once a Chinese woman starts to “date,” marriage is almost always in the cards; whether it’s sooner rather than later depends on the woman and her circumstances, but the expectation is there. This traditional mindset excludes the possibility of the relationship not working out, so when it doesn’t, the breakup often involves an all-consuming emotional intensity that is not commonly seen in western breakups.
How a Chinese lady handles a breakup also depends on her age, maturity, level of independence, and attitude toward relationships in general and the relationship in question in particular. The same can be said for most other women all over the world. But the emotional and psychological distress that a woman from China experiences when breaking up with a foreign man, or even a Chinese man, is normally brought about and compounded by the unrelenting pressure for them to find a husband and have a family.
This is not to say that the only loss they mourn is that of the chance to end their search; they also feel a genuine loss for the promise, not just the possibility, of having found a person they can grow old with and a stable family life. Many Chinese women do not view a breakup as the proverbial one-door-closing-and-another-one-opening situation; the way they see it, the door is a one-way ticket to a one-way path toward marriage. There are no other routes that they can take if the one they’re on doesn’t take them to where they want to go.
Again, it is the mindset that they have when they go into a relationship, one which is cultural in nature rather than a personal predilection. Not being able to handle a breakup calmly or without hopelessness and a fatalistic attitude does not always mean that a Chinese woman is immature, desperate, or irrational; it has more to do with the high expectation she had and the deep emotional investment she made in the relationship.
So a foreign man dating Chinese women must always keep in mind that setting the right expectations from the very beginning is extremely important because it means the difference between a cognizant heart that is willing to take a risk, or a crushed one that may take a long time to recover. Be sensitive, be considerate, and, most of all, be honest.
Dating Chinese women can be as challenging as it is rewarding, especially for a foreign man looking for his dream Chinese wife. Understanding not only Chinese history and culture, but also the issues that often arise in cross-cultural relationships with Chinese women will prove very beneficial in enriching one’s knowledge of and experiences in Chinese dating. One can find invaluable information on the blogs, forums, and magazine of ChinaLoveMatch.net, the home of trusted Chinese online dating where foreign men and Chinese women share their life experiences and bare their souls to give you the real goods on love, cross-cultural relationships, and all things Chinese.