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Myths and Facts about Foreign Brides

With the explosion of new communications technologies enabling instant correspondence between any two people in the world, it is no surprise that more and more men are looking overseas in their search for the perfect life partner. While myths still persist surrounding foreign brides, many men still look for, and find foreign brides, and the reasons are as myriad and diverse as the women themselves are.

A quick survey of foreign brides Web sites would show that these marriage-minded women, most of whom come from Russia, Asia, Latin America, and the former Soviet Union, prefer to carry with them their cultures and customs wherever they go. A clear understanding of customs and traditions of these foreign brides is necessary in order to throw light on the foreign bride phenomenon and the reasons why foreign brides seek Western husbands.

Myth No. 1 : Foreign Brides Are Submissive, Domestic Slaves

One of the most widely perpetuated stereotypes about foreign brides purports that these women are submissive, undemanding, and willing to play the part of indentured servants to their Western husbands. We have to thank biased media representations of foreign brides for the persistence of the old saw about “submissive exotic women.” Traditionally, foreign brides are loyal, faithful, and devoted to family, qualities that are often misconstrued as submissiveness. A combination of economic and cultural realities have made extended-family living arrangements a norm for many foreign brides, and this experience has taught women the art of compromising, the clever use of tact, and the skillful negotiation of family rules. Thus, to these women, upholding family values remains an enormous source of pride.

Myth No. 2: Foreign Brides Are Opportunistic Gold-Diggers

While there is no denying that a substantial number of foreign brides hope to lead a better life in the west, it is just as legitimate to argue that a fat bank account does not top the list of qualities that these women look for in men. What women want is a man who is honest, loyal, sincere, respectful, and able to provide for the family’s basic needs. This is the same in the West also. A foreign bride does not harbor the illusion of landing a millionaire for a husband, but instead pins her hopes on finding a man with strength of character, a shared respect for family values, and the financial means to adequately support a family.

Myth No. 3: Foreign Brides Are Under-Educated or Worse, Illiterate and Uncultured

No other part of the world places a higher premium on education than the countries where most foreign brides come from. Thus, it is not unusual to find a foreign bride who touts a college degree (some even have postgraduate credentials tucked under their belt), speaks excellent English, and can tell the difference between Yo-Yo Ma and the rapper Yo-Yo. Because she is a healthy balance of traditional values and a modern, tolerant outlook, the foreign bride possesses the intelligence and sensibility to adapt to a western environment without sacrificing her norms and customs.

Myth No. 4: A Foreign Bride Will Abandon Her Husband Once She Gains Citizenship in His Country

A foreign bride who decides to marry a western man will have to leave the safety net of family, friends, and culture. Stepping foot into a strange country where the only person the foreign bride knows is her husband could be stressful and emotionally trying, at times. But the foreign bride knows that she needs to make the initial sacrifices in order to achieve what she has come to the west for: to build a happy family with her loving and caring husband and to secure a stable future for their children. Marrying a foreigner and starting a new life in a faraway country are not decisions that a foreign bride arrives at hastily. It is preposterous to think that a foreign bride who leaves her native country to be with her husband will chuck everything as soon as she gets her citizenship. Make no mistake about it: once her mind about settling abroad is made, a foreign bride will do everything in her power to build a happy home and keep her marriage together.

Foreign Brides : The Common Thread

Though their heterogeneous backgrounds guarantee that no two foreign brides are alike, these women share a number of qualities that make them ideal mates for Western men. Women from foreign countries value trust, loyalty, sincerity, and are extremely devoted to family. Because of their expected roles within society as nurturers and caregivers, foreign brides adapt easily to domestic life and do so with utmost pride. True, a marriage to a foreign bride has its share of ups and downs, but judging from the positive experiences of western men who have found their life partner on the other side of the Atlantic, the ups far outweigh the downs. Foreign brides are gentle, respectful, and loving, and any western man who wins the heart of such a foreign bride should consider himself blessed.

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